An Exhibit to Celebrate 75 Years

PHL airport

According to a recent press release from Philadelphia International Airport, the airport is celebrating its 75 years of service in a unique way – with a photographic exhibit along the Terminal C-D link.The exhibit displays the airport’s history through photographs, from its early days in 1940 to the hustle and bustle of today.


“This exhibit illustrates how the Airport has changed over the years,” says PHL Chief Curator Leah Douglas. “Some passengers from the area will likely remember the old days and appreciate how much has been achieved.”

The photographs show Philadelphia International when it was still known was Philadelphia Municipal Airport in the 1940s and served around 40,000 passengers per year. At the time, the four main airlines that serviced the airport were United Airlines, Trans World Airlines (TWA), American Airlines, and Eastern Air Lines. Over the years, the number of airlines has grown to 29 (including major carriers like Delta, Southwest, and US Airways) and the airport serves around 30 million people annually.

As the exhibit continues, visitors (which include ticketed passengers only) can revisit iconic points of expansion that the airport underwent. For example, when jet airliners became popular in the 1960s, Philadelphia International expanded to create more terminals, longer runways, and upgraded facilities. Two decades later, during the 1980s, a modern air traffic control tower was built and PHL Airport parking garages were expanded. In addition, the SEPTA Airport Rail Line was introduced and by 2001, Terminal F was created.

If you’re flying out of Philadelphia International between now and December, take a moment to look at the exhibit and appreciate how far the airport has come since it first opened.