AIRMAIL CREATES AN INDUSTRY:
Coast to Coast
On May 15, 1920, the third leg of the transcontinental
route, Chicago, Illinois, to Omaha, Nebraska, via Iowa City,
Iowa, was established, performing service similar to that
performed on the routes between New York and Chicago. On August
16, 1920, a route was established between Chicago and St.
Louis, and on December 1 of the same year a route was also
established between Chicago and Minneapolis. Both of these
latter routes expedited mail between the points named, and
were feeder lines to mail trains and the transcontinental
route at Chicago.
The last leg of the transcontinental route,
Omaha, Nebraska, to San Francisco, California, via North Platte,
Nebraska, Cheyenne, Rawlins and Rock Springs, Wyoming, Salt Lake
City, Utah, and Elko and Reno, Nevada, was inaugurated on September
8, 1920. The initial westbound trip was made at the rate of
80 miles per hour and was flown without a forced landing,
either for weather or mechanical trouble. The airplane carried
16,000 letters, which arrived in San Francisco 22 hours ahead
of the best possible time by train.
Due to the necessity of economizing on expenditures,
and the fact that Congress had not specifically authorized
it, the New York-Washington route was discontinued on May
31, 1921, and the Minneapolis-Chicago and the Chicago-St.
Louis routes on June 30, 1921. Operation was then confined
to the service between New York and San Francisco, for which
appropriation was specifically made.
The new routes would prove as dangerous as the old. D. B. Colyer, a chief of flyers, wrote to Edgerton DB Colyer, a chief of flyers, wrote to Edgerton
that the Cheyenne-Salt Lake City route was "a good one to kill the
men that you seem to have a grudge against or want to see
out of the way."
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of the Coast to Coast.