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Postmen of the Skies exhibit logo

Exhibition Opening Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Postmen of the Skies,” opening May 1 at the Smithsonian’s National Postal Museum, celebrates the 100th anniversary of the first regularly scheduled airmail flights. The exhibition, on view through May 27, 2019, invites visitors to step into the exciting and memorable stories of the airmail pilots whose pioneering flights set the stage for today’s advanced airmail system and commercial aviation.

Associated Programs and Events

United States Postal Service First-Day-of-Issue Ceremony (Stamp Dedication)

Airmail stamp

The United States Postal Service will honor the beginning of airmail service by dedicating two United States Air Mail Forever stamps this year. The first, depicted in blue, commemorates the pioneering spirit of the brave pilots who first flew the mail in the early years of aviation. The first-day-of-issue ceremony will take place May 1 at 11 a.m. at the museum. The event is free and open to the public.

National Postal Museum Public Programs

Aaerial Age cover

Airmail-Themed Scavenger Hunt/Self-guide—The museum will feature a gallery self-guide that will direct visitors to artifacts and exhibitions throughout the museum that highlight the history of airmail in the U.S. Exhibitions, including “Postmen of the Skies” and “Airmail in America,” will be featured, along with objects throughout the museum.

Airmail Game Time—A gallery activity will feature airmail-themed board games as part of the story of how airmail impacted American pop-culture. Visitors will be able to try their luck and test their skill at some of these vintage and reproduction games at this gallery experience.

Book Launch and signing for Stamp of the Century

Stamp of the Century book cover

The Smithsonian’s National Postal Museum and the American Philatelic Society will host the launch of Stamp of the Century, a book about the famous philatelic error, the Inverted Jenny. This will be the first readable, popular study of this iconic postage stamp to appear in nearly thirty years and should be of interest to stamp collectors and readers interested in American history and culture. The authors, Kellen Diamanti and Deborah Fisher, will be on hand from 12:00 – 2:00 p.m. to converse with museum visitors and sign copies of their book, which will be for sale in the museum gift store. (The authors will also be part of the museum’s “History After Hours” program on May 2, from 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. for an evening book talk and signing.)

Visit the museum’s event calendar for information on the many fun and educational programs available at the National Postal Museum.