US Stamps

Special flight cover for Christmas 1929

Jan 10, 2023, 1 PM
Franked with older stamps, including an 1893 2¢ Columbian, this 1929 “Special Christmas Flight” cover is one of a group flown from stops on Contract Air Mail (CAM) route 30, which extended from Chicago to Atlanta.

U.S. Stamp Notes by John M. Hotchner

Few special flight covers connect directly to Christmas. An exception is the Dec. 25, 1929, cover canceled in Chicago shown here.

Interstate Airlines had been awarded a Contract Air Mail (CAM) route between Chicago and Atlanta in August 1928. The route was designated CAM 30. During the next year, additional stops were added to the route.

For Christmas 1929, Interstate Airlines decided to sponsor Christmas flights from cities on the CAM 30 route, using the Christmas wreath label that can be seen on the illustrated cover.

Other known points of origin include Evansville and Terre Haute in Indiana; St. Louis, Mo.; Nashville and Chattanooga in Tennessee; and Atlanta, Ga.

Many of the covers are signed by the pilots who flew various legs of CAM 30. The covers are not expensive — if you can find them. I have seen recent offerings in the $10 to $30 range.

With the exception of the stick-on label, each cover is different as to points of origin and destination, date of delivery, autographs, cancellation types, and additional postal markings and etiquettes.

These covers can make quite a nice specialty collection if you have patience.

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