Practicality was the name of the game as aviation’s Golden Age ended in 1938 and war quickly approached. Despite the previous era’s name, there was little gold in the slowly growing industry.
The Beech Staggerwing sold well as a business aircraft, but at $26,000 it did not appeal to the general public. Not even the $1,000 Cub from Taylor Aircraft sold well. The Boeing Stearman was near the end of its career as a mail plane.
All these companies were sustained by sales during World War II. mostly as trainers, but also as transport aircraft —and even ground attack roles in the unusual case of the Piper Cub.