Inaugurated in the early 20th Century, airmail was a premium service which required paying special postal rates. U.S. airmail stamps document the early history of aviation commerce - from biplanes to Zeppelins to flying boats.
The first airmail stamp - a 24-cent stamp that covered postage from New York to Washington - was issued in May 1918. The stamp pictured the plane that carried the mail – the Curtiss Jenny – and is widely recognized today because a pane of 100 was accidentally printed with the plane upside-down.
On July 1, 1924, regular airmail service across the country was established. Airmail was divided into three zones: New York to Chicago, Chicago to Cheyenne, and Cheyenne to San Francisco. Mailing a letter cost eight cents per zone, so stamps were made in denominations of 8, 16, and 24.
In February of 1926, the Post Office contracted private air companies to distribute airmail. Three stamps were issued for use on these contract airmail routes (or CAMs), each depicting the U.S. map.
Charles Lindbergh’s historical flight in May of 1927 inspired one of the most popular airmail stamps issued, which featured his plane, the Spirit of St. Louis. The cost of airmail was reduced in 1928, and two new stamps were issued: Beacon on Rocky Mountains and the Winged Globe.
Airmail service across the Pacific was taken over by the Post Office Department in November 1935 as the threat of war with Japan increased, and Pan Am was chosen as the carrier. A stamp was issued for the three trans-Pacific zones: San Francisco to Hawaii, Hawaii to Guam, and Guam to the Philippine Islands. It originally cost 25 cents per zone, but in 1937, a 20 cent stamp was issued and the cost of mailing a letter from the mainland U.S. to the Philippine Islands was reduced to 50 cents and airmail was extended to Hong Kong.
Cross-Atlantic airmail began on May 20, 1939 as Pan Am delivered mail from New York to Marseilles, France, traveling through Portugal on the way. Although this service didn't las...
During World War II, seven stamps known as Transports were issued, each with a different denomination and depicting a different twin-motored transport plane.
After World War II, many commemorative stamps were released, such as a stamp to honor the 75th anniversary of the Universal Postal Union in 1949 and another to honor the 50th anniversary of airmail service in 1968. Many commemoratives featuring aviators (such as Amelia Earhart, Robert Goddard, and the Wright brothers) were also released.
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Find springtime fun in your May calendarGoErie.com, April 23rd
'The Collector': Thursday, May 1, 7:30 p.m.; Edinboro University Performing Arts Center; presented by Laugh/Riot Performing Arts Company; also on May 2-3, 8-10, 7:30 p.m.; and May 2 and 9, 2:30 p.m. Cost: $10; $5 students, seniors and EUP faculty/staff...Read more
Glenview Park District events calendar April 24-April 30, 2014Glenview Announcements, April 23rd
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Calendar for April 23, 2014Troy Record, April 23rd
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Official Rules: Car4Free SweepstakesKMOV.com, April 22nd
If the News 4 This Morning or Great Day St. Louis are pre-empted, Sponsor reserves the right to air the key word of the day at a different time but is not required to do so. OR (2). Wireless Entry: .... In the event of a dispute regarding on-line entry...Read more
Courier Times Community Calendar for April 21Bucks County Courier Times, April 20th
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Oh, the grancy greybeard abounds with beautyAndalusia Star-News, April 18th
Mail to CHS, P.O. Box 1582, Andalusia, Alabama 36420. Include your e-mail address if you wish to be reminded of upcoming meetings. To commemorate the Sesquicentennial of the War Between ... For those who collect stamps, consider those associated with...Read more
Would you invest $5000 in a parcel tag?WA today, April 14th
According to the catalogue, "the tag is believed to have paid postage for a 27lb 9oz gold bullion shipment from Melbourne probably to California for refining …". A few minor blemishes affected its total value. ... of people collecting them has...Read more
'Misprinted Stamps Escape Postal Vault'DigitalJournal.com, April 1st
"We are leveraging the incredible story behind the rare collectible as a creative way to generate interest in stamp collecting while highlighting the role the Post Office Department had in developing the commercial aviation industry," said Postmaster...Read more