Merrill C. MeigsMerrill C. Meigs (November 25, 1883 - January 26, 1968) was the publisher of the Chicago Herald and Examiner in the 1920s. Inspired to become a pilot by Charles Lindbergh's solo flight across the Atlantic Ocean, he became a booster of Chicago as a world center of aviation. He gave flying lessons to President Harry S Truman.
Meigs grew up on a farm near Malcom, Illinois, where he was more interested in the mechanical devices used to raise crops than actually farming. In 1901, he took a job as a salesman for the J.I. Case Threshing Machine Company in Racine, Wisconsin. Within a year, he was in charge of the company's sales for South America. Despite never graduating from high school, Meigs was allowed to enroll at the University of Chicago, where he played football under Amos Alonzo Stagg and also played baseball and water polo. While at the college, he would also be the campus correspondent for the Chicago Herald and Examiner, of which he would become publisher later in his life.
As head of the Chicago Aero Commission, Meigs insisted that in addition to Midway Airport (then called Municipal Airport) and O'Hare Field (then called Orchard-Douglas), the city needed an airfield within ten minutes of the Loop. It opened in December of 1948 and renamed Meigs Field the following year.
Meigs retired in 1962 and became a consultant to the newspaper industry. He died at age 84.