100 years of US international air mail service
Exactly 100 years ago, on 15 October 1920, the first companies started operations under a Foreign Airmail Contract (FAM I) of the American Postal Administration, creating the USA's first international airmail system which was in operation until 1923. FAM I was awarded to Florida West Indies Airways to carry mail between Key West and Havana (Cuba). According to Claude Allaz' "The History of Air Cargo and Airmail" the airline was taken over by Aero Marine Airways, which went out of business in 1923.
On the same day, (photo) the Seattle Victoria Air Mail Line took off with FAM II to connect the two cities in the US federal states of Washington and British Columbia from which it drew its name. 270 kg of mail were delivered on up to twelve flights per month. Until the service was discontinued on 30 June 1937, the company flew from 10 t to 20 t of mail per year.
Finally, on 9 April 1923, FAM III helped launch a service between New Orleans and Pilottown: From the mouth of the Mississippi river delta, the Gulf Coast Airline carried letters from and to ships on routes to the Caribbean and South America. (ah)