Press Release

SFO Museum Receives Gift of Historic United Airlines Uniforms, Now on View in New Exhibition

CONTACT: Charles Schuler
Associate Deputy Airport Director
Communications & Marketing
San Francisco International Airport  

SFO Museum Receives Gift of Historic United Airlines Uniforms, Now on View in New Exhibition

SAN FRANCISCO -- SFO Museum at San Francisco International Airport has received fifty-five flight attendant uniforms donated to its aviation collection by the United Airlines Historical Foundation. This major gift represents the full history of the airline’s company-issued cabin crew attire. Both female and male outfits are included in the donation that spans seven decades of uniforms—from the 1930s and the military-styles of the WWII era to the designer fashions worn in the 1950s, ‘60s, and ‘70s, and up to the present.
In 2007, at the request of the United Airlines Historical Foundation, United Air Lines Inc. generously donated their large collection of extra flight attendant uniforms and accessories to the Foundation for distribution to select aviation museums across the U.S. “We felt the museum program at SFO was the right home for this important collection of United’s history and the preservation of that legacy,” said United Airlines Historical Foundation President Tom Goodyear.
SFO Museum, which is accredited by the American Alliance of Museums “has the professional staff, including conservators, needed to support these artifacts.” said Goodyear. SFO Museum Director and Chief Curator Blake Summers expressed appreciation, “For the generosity of the United Airlines Historical Foundation in enabling SFO Museum to further its mission of sharing aviation history with the public it serves.”
Eighteen of the female uniforms from the collection are now on exhibition at San Francisco International Airport in the Louis A. Turpen Aviation Museum. Included are the ensembles created by Raymond Loewy, and the fashion houses of Ben Reig, William Travilla, and Jean Louis, many with hats made by famed milliner Mae Hanauer.
Selected images from the exhibition are available for download at:
United We Stand: Female Flight Attendant Uniforms of United Airlines is on view from Monday, April 8 to September 15, 2013, and is located pre-security in the San Francisco Airport Commission Aviation Library and Louis A. Turpen Aviation Museum in the International Terminal, Departures Level, adjacent to the Boarding Area 'A' entrance. The museum is open free of charge to all visitors during the operating hours of 10:00am to 4:30pm, Sunday through Friday. It is closed Saturdays, Holidays, and during private events. Telephone (650) 821-9900 or extension *1114 on any Airport courtesy telephone.
The United Airlines Historical Foundation is a non-profit organization, independent of United Airlines, Inc., that is dedicated to the preservation of the airline’s historic accomplishments in commercial aviation. See for information on the Foundation’s uniforms preservation program.

SFO Museum

SFO Museum was established by the Airport Commission in 1980 for the purposes of humanizing the Airport environment, providing visibility for the unique cultural life of San Francisco, and providing educational services for the traveling public. The Museum was granted initial accreditation from the American Alliance of Museums in 1999, reaccredited in 2005, and has the distinction of being the country’s only accredited museum in an airport. Today, SFO Museum features approximately twenty galleries throughout the Airport terminals displaying a rotating schedule of art, history, science, and cultural exhibitions, as well as the San Francisco Airport Commission Aviation Library and Louis A. Turpen Aviation Museum, a permanent collection dedicated to the history of commercial aviation. For more information, please visit
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