Issue Date: 30/06/2014
Issue Name: 75th Anniversary of the First Transatlantic A
Producer: Buckingham Covers
The 26th March 1939 saw the Pan American Boeing 314 Clipper make its trial flight across the mid Atlantic, from Baltimore, Maryland to Foynes in Ireland. Regular mail services began in May 1939 with a flight time of 29 hours. This then led to the first transatlantic air service on the 28th June 1939. To commemorate this event we have produced this stunning presentation sheet.Our cover features a beautiful image of an Air Service plane coasting on the water Postmarked with a Southampton postmark (28th June, 2014) Doubled with a stamp and cachet Featuring our choice of stamp and label from our Transatlantic Air Service Presentation Sheet
The sensational first non-stop flight by Charles Lindbergh from New York to France in 1927 sparked an interest in the possibility of flying transatlantic routes. The North Atlantic had always made it impossible in the past due to unpredictable weather and the fact that stopping points along the route were unavailable. There were commercial flights to South America by French, German and Italian airlines carrying mail and German Zeppelins that conducted some transatlantic passenger services during the 1930s but there was no airline making regular flights.
1936 saw experimental flights made by airlines such as Britain’s Imperial Airways and Pan American. The decision to use flying boats was made since there were few concrete runways at coastal airports on the Atlantic. Initially, the planes only carried mail rather than passengers, taking almost a full day to travel, using the Short S.23 Empire flying boats.
Pan American held a competition between eight U.S. airplane manufacturers in 1937 to build a 100 seat long range airliner. Boeing won the competition with the Boeing 314 flying boat or Clipper. It was the largest commercial plane to fly until the jumbo jet 30 years later. The Boeing 314 had a range of 3500 miles and could carry up to 74 passengers.
On 28 June 1939, Pan American Airways began its first transatlantic air service between New York and Marseilles, France, using the Boeing Model 314 Clipper.
Pan American dominated the service by the beginning of World War II. The service was intermittant during World War II, resulting in Pan American selling three Clippers to the British Overseas Aircraft Corporation (BOAC). With the advent of the Lockheed Constellation and the Super Constellation aircraft in 1945, it was soon possible to have regular scheduled flights between New York and London, greatly increasing tourism and trade by 1947. By 1950, the transatlantic became the world’s number one route.
Order your cover below: