August 12, 1918

The Post Office Department hired army Captain Benjamin Lipsner, Major Fleet's second-in-command to run the service that began that August. 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.

Here are some envelopes from those first August flights.

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This envelope was addressed to Henry Woodhouse, head of the Aero Club of America. The cover was carried on the August 12, 1918 airmail flight from Washington to New York City.

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This envelope was addressed to Henry Woodhouse, head of the Aero Club of America. The cover was carried on the August 12, 1918 airmail flight from Washington to New York City. Woodhouse wrote his congratulations to U.S. Aerial Mail Service Superintendent Benjamin B. Lipsner on the front of the envelope.

Learn more about the first postal pilots.

Learn more about the August 1918 flights.

Fad to Fundamental: Airmail in America