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AIRMAIL CREATES AN INDUSTRY: The Postal Service Takes Over

Did you know?From the beginning, Second Assistant Postmaster General Otto Praeger knew that the success of airmail was not in proving mail could be flown over ever-increasing distances, but that in proving it could be flown on a regular schedule. Without Congressional funding for the service, aided by wide-spread public support and excitement, Praeger's vision was unobtainable.

The army turned operations of the airmail service over to the Post Office Department in August. The department hired army Captain Benjamin Lipsner, Major Fleet's second-in-command, to run the service. Lipsner resigned his commission and became the First Superintendent of the Air Mail Service. The first flight operated by the Post Office Department took off from College Park, Maryland, on August 12, 1918.

Click here to learn more about The Postal Service Takes Over.

Related Link:
>> New York-Chicago pathfinding flights.

Lipsner and Miller Standard airplane
  Envelope from September 1918 flight
Click on the photos to view a larger image.

(top left) Lipsner and Miller

(top right) Standard airplane

(bottom right) Envelope from September 1918 flight
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