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My Newly Acquired Clipper Covers!

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Australia
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Posted 07/26/2017   11:55 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this topic Add Laurie 02 to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
Hi all,
I received these covers in a heap of stamps I purchased last week, I just thought I would share them with my American friends!
If anyone has any history to put to the covers, please do so!

this first one is the earliest I have...
Front,



And Back!

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Pillar Of The Community
Australia
916 Posts
Posted 07/27/2017   12:25 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Laurie 02 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
The next one is from San Francisco to Honolulu and back to Los Angeles Nov 1935.

Front



And Back!

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Edited by Laurie 02 - 07/27/2017 12:26 am
Pillar Of The Community
Australia
916 Posts
Posted 07/27/2017   12:29 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Laurie 02 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
And this one is The next one is from San Francisco to Manila and back to Los Angeles Nov 1935.

Very faint Cachet



And Back

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Australia
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Posted 07/27/2017   12:44 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Laurie 02 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
the next 3 are from 1937 and I think first flight covers?

there are no cancels on the back so I am assuming philatelic rather than postally used.





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1124 Posts
Posted 07/27/2017   01:00 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Kimo to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
G'day Lawrence,

Your first cover from April, 1935 is a nice example of Trans-Oceanic Flight number 1230 as listed in the American Air Mail Catalog. There are three varieties of this cover - ones that were flown from San Francisco to Honolulu (there were 2,908 such covers flown); ones that were flown back from Honolulu to San Francisco (there were 4,575 of these flown); and ones that were flown on the round trip from San Francisco to Honolulu and then back to San Francisco (there were 3,974 of these flown). Yours is an example of one of the ones flown on the round trip.

This was a special survey flight made by Pan American Airways in April, 1935 in one of their big 4 engine Sikorsky S-42 flying boats - this one was named the not very creative "Pan American Clipper" though fortunately a few years later Pan Am renamed her more romantically as the Samoan Clipper. On this particular flight Pan Am was conducting surveys to prepare for what would become their regular trans-Pacific airmail and passenger service - initially to Manila on November 22 of that year, and then eventually on to various Asian countries, Australia, New Zealand and others in around the region. Soon after this survey flight using this S-42 flying boat, Pan Am began purchasing even larger flying boats that were the mainstay of its trans-Pacific service.

A sad side-note is that this particular S-42 flying boat was destroyed on January 11, 1938 at American Samoa. The aircraft developed an engine problem shortly after taking off from Pago Pago Harbor. The S-42 was fully loaded with fuel and exceeded the gross weight maximum for a safe landing. Because of this, Pan Am's famous pilot Captain Musick who was at the controls elected to dump fuel before attempting an emergency landing. However, because of the seaplane's weight and reduced power, the S-42 circled the harbor with flaps extended to maintain lift while fuel dumping was in progress. Apparently, neither the Sikorsky company nor Pan American had ever tested fuel dumping with flaps fully extended. The position of the fuel dump vents on the wing, coupled with the consequent airflow with extended flaps created a back flow of vaporizing fuel which lingered and grew around the trailing edge of the wing. It is believed that this explosive fuel/air mixture eventually extended to the engine exhaust manifold causing a catastrophic detonation that destroyed the plane in flight. Captain Edwin Musick and his crew of six were all killed, though fortunately they were not carrying any passengers on this flight.

Here is a photo of this flying boat shortly after the survey flight for which you have a flown cover.



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Edited by Kimo - 07/27/2017 01:02 am
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Posted 07/27/2017   01:03 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Laurie 02 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
This one is my favourite!
it has like a little photo of a clipper and it seems to be from France to New York

Front...



Back.

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Posted 07/27/2017   01:06 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Laurie 02 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
thanks Kimo, that is awesome and a fantastic photo, I will print that and the photo and put it with the cover If that is ok with you?

Cheers
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Posted 07/27/2017   01:08 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Laurie 02 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Next from 1941 first day airmail issue with a Clipper cachet

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Australia
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Posted 07/27/2017   01:10 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Laurie 02 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
...And from 1942 Hoolulu to LA via Clipper, and examined by Censor #2629!

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Posted 07/27/2017   01:14 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Laurie 02 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
and my last one for the moment, from 1943 First day booklet pane stamp issue with another little photo!
the Alaska Clipper!
note the imperforate Vetical sides on the 3 stamps...is this unusual?



and that's it for me for a while!
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Posted 07/27/2017   01:23 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Kimo to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Your two November 22, 1935 covers are first flights from the first trans-Pacific airmail flown from San Francisco to Manila and back, with stopping points along the way. For this historical flight, Pan Am used one of their brand new giant flying boats, their Martin M-130 China Clipper that had just been delivered to the airline a few weeks earlier on October 9. For this historical flight, Pan Am assigned one of their best and most famous pilots to command the aircraft, Captain Edwin Music.

This is the regular service by Pan American Airways for which the survey flight memorialized by your first cover had prepared. In particular you these two are listed in the American Air Mail Catalog under Foreign Air Mail (FAM) route number 14 and as numbers F14-1 for the San Francisco to Manila leg (44,346 covers flown) and F14-1a for the San Francisco to Honolulu leg (46,561 covers flown). To have the full set of each leg of the flight out and back one would need to collect a total of 12 covers. If one would like to collect varieties of different color ink cachets one would need to collect an additional 6 covers for a total of 18 covers. Most of these are relatively common with your two being by far the most common. Unfortunately for yours they are a bit soiled and their cachets have been faded quite a bit, perhaps from having been left out in the sunshine at some point in their life. But still they ignite the imagination that they were actually on that first commercial flight that opened up for the first time mail and passenger service across the Pacific.
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Posted 07/27/2017   01:25 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Kimo to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I do not own that particular photo so I cannot give you permission to use it commercially, but anyone is welcome to print it out and keep it as a reference in their personal collection.
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Posted 07/27/2017   01:43 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Kimo to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Your favourite cover, the one between New York and Marseilles in 1939 with the little photo of the Pan Am clipper flying boat on the front is listed in the American Air Mail Catalog in the Foreign Air Mail route number 18 section as number F18-1. It was flown from New York, departing on May 20, 1939 and arrived at Marseilles on May 22. For this flight Pan Am had just received delivery on their newest giant flying boats, their Boeing 314s. In particular, they named one of them the Yankee Clipper and this was this particular aircraft that was used. It was piloted by one of Pan Ams' famous clipper pilots, Captain Arthur E. LaPorte. There were 88,814 covers flown on this leg of the flight which is an enormous number, though not all had this particular pre-printed cachet. There was an official rubber stamped ink cachet applied to all covers on this flight, though it seems to be missing from yours, perhaps because yours has a private commercially applied pre-printed cachet where the official rubber stamp cachet should have been applied. The cachet on your cover was created and sold commercially by a philatelic dealer and is called a "Crosby Cachet" Crosby cachets are instantly recognizable as they have tiny photographs glued to them such as yours has. Crosby made cachets for first day covers, some first flights, and also for general use as fancy stationery. I just did a quite search on the US eBay site for "Crosby cachet" and it returned over 1,100 current auctions for all kinds of covers with his signature little photos so while you do not find his cacheted covers on every street corner, they are not difficult to find
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Posted 07/27/2017   01:57 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Laurie 02 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
you are certainly the "Clipper Oracle" Kimo, I am really enjoying the info you are posting on the covers, It gives the covers "depth"


Quote:
I do not own that particular photo so I cannot give you permission to use it commercially, but anyone is welcome to print it out and keep it as a reference in their personal collection.


Yup it will only be for me, and to show the guys at the club!


Quote:
The cachet on your cover was created and sold commercially by a philatelic dealer and is called a "Crosby Cachet" Crosby cachets are instantly recognizable as they have tiny photographs glued to them such as yours has


Handy to know! I have a lot of first day covers like this so once again, its nice to have that information!

Cheers

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Posted 07/27/2017   09:31 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add blcjr to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
This one is my favourite!
it has like a little photo of a clipper and it seems to be from France to New York
Adding to what Kimo has said about this cover...

It appears only to have made the first leg of the round trip depicted in the Crosby cachet, from New York to Lisbon, and then to Marseilles; it did not make the trip on the northern route back from Southhampton to New York (from Marseilles to Southhampton would have been by surface mail, not air mail). Curiously, it lacks the handstamp cachet "Type F18a" normally seen on FAM 18-1 first flight covers.

There is a specialist catalog for Crosby covers, and this cachet is listed as "113-C." The representative example shows the "Type F18a" handstamped cachet, and like yours was cancelled first in New York and then in Marseilles.

The first flight back across the northern route would have left Southhampton on July 1. On P. 115 of the Crosby catalog is a cover shown that flew the Northern Route, FAM 18-10, from New York to Southhampton, and then the flight back on the northern route, FAM 18-15.

I wonder if there is any cover that actually ever made the trip out on the southern route, FAM 18-1, and then back on FAM 18-15, as depicted in the Crosby cachet?

That's a nice batch of covers.

Basil
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Posted 07/27/2017   3:17 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Laurie 02 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Thank you Basil, for the extra information and your kind words.
Its funny, I never really limed FDC collecting focussing more on the stamps until I came across these clipper covers and the other Crosby covers.
I wonder if there is a "show us your Crosby covers" thread somewhere?
Cheers
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