In February 1994, Mesa Airlines bought the assets and routes of Crown Airways and started a new company named Liberty Express Airlines. Crown had been owned by the Brockway Glass company and was an Allegheny Commuter airline for years. In 1989, Crown was purchased in a leveraged buyout by two investors at the same time Allegheny Commuters became US Air Express.
Mesa bought the assets of Crown, which included seven aircraft, BE1900 (old C models with UB serial numbers), Shorts 330s, and DeHavilland Twin Otters. Mesa replaced the old 1900s with seven Beechcraft BE1900Cs and the Shorts 330s with five Shorts 360, except that they had six seats removed so that they didn’t have to be operated on an FAR Part 121 certificate. The Twin Otters were sold.
The company was headquartered out of Dubois, Pennsylvania, and fed US Air at the Pittsburgh hub. Crown employees were required to reapply for the new subsidiary and selected employees were hired at Liberty Express, which was operated on the Mesa Airlines operating certificate.