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United States/Covers & Postmarks : Airmail Special Delivery Cover From 1936

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Linus
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19 Jul 2019
08:34:11am
Today I will share with the club this cover from my postal history collection with some nice cancellations. It was mailed on February 24, 1936 at 1:30 PM in Long Beach, California, USA and arrived the next day February 25, 1936 at 6:00 PM in Huntingdon, Pennsylvania, USA. I like how it was cancelled at 3 AM at the Airmail Field in Kansas City, Missouri, USA. They flew this cover all night long across the USA in an airplane in 1936, then it went by train from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA (see the RMS cancellation) to the final destination. The whole process was amazing, in that time period, when you think about it.

Linus

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BenFranklin1902
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Tom in Exton, PA
19 Jul 2019
11:01:51am

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re: Airmail Special Delivery Cover From 1936

I love a cover with all the way markings! It just oozes with history and you can feel like you are there when you hold it in your hands!

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Here's one from my collection. San Francisco on the evening of December 31, flew over the year boundary to Chicago on Jan 1st. From there it had to fly to Philadelphia and then be driven to Ardmore, a suburb probably via train as this is on what's known as the Philadelphia "Main Line".

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And courtesy of Google, here's the house it was delivered to! Still there!

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amsd
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Editor, Seal News; contributor, JuicyHeads
19 Jul 2019
03:30:59pm
re: Airmail Special Delivery Cover From 1936

Linus,

love that one: two Airmail Field and one RMS receiving (or transit) cancels. very, very nice

David (AMSD)

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"Save the USPS, buy stamps; save the hobby, use commemoratives"

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smaier
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Sally
19 Jul 2019
10:36:25pm
re: Airmail Special Delivery Cover From 1936

Linus - in the first Long Beach cancel (1:30), there is a 2 between the words Long and California. What does that 2 mean? Really neat cover.

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Linus
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19 Jul 2019
11:25:43pm
re: Airmail Special Delivery Cover From 1936

Thank you for the kind words from all, on my cover.

Sally, I think it refers to the machine number in the Long Beach post office. They had more than one canceller machine, so they numbered them, 1,2,3, etc. My cover went through machine #2. My source is this old post on Stamporama:

https://stamporama.com/discboard/disc_main.php?action=20&id=16521#124723

Tom, nice cover and thank you for adding to this thread. Note that your cover has a 5 after Calif in the machine cancel. It went through machine #5.

Somebody correct me if I am wrong,

Linus

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BenFranklin1902
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Tom in Exton, PA
20 Jul 2019
10:16:23am

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re: Airmail Special Delivery Cover From 1936

I dunno if the numbers in the cancel are the cancellation / machine number or they could be the postal zone of each office? I know they had addresses like "NY, NY 2" prior to zip codes.

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Linus
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20 Jul 2019
10:54:59am
re: Airmail Special Delivery Cover From 1936

Smauggie would probably know the correct answer, but he and "The Wizzard" and all our Minnesota members are busy this weekend with their biggest stamp show of the year in Crystal, Minnesota. I wish I was there, instead of mowing weeds here. Man is it hot the past few days! The corn in Iowa loves the heat.

Linus

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smauggie
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21 Jul 2019
08:12:10am
re: Airmail Special Delivery Cover From 1936

Good morning!

The 5 in the machine cancel is referred to as the service mark.

In a big post office like San Francisco there would be several machine cancellation devices being used. Each machine/workstation had a machine and a postal worker to operate that machine. Each machine was coded with a number (and sometimes a letter) to note which postal workstation it came from.

In one way you could definitely see it as a machine number, but another purpose was to know which postal worker had processed that piece of mail, for oversight purposes

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Linus
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21 Jul 2019
09:12:15am
re: Airmail Special Delivery Cover From 1936

Good morning, Antonio! Thank you for the detailed explanation.

Linus

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smaier
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Sally
21 Jul 2019
12:21:59pm
re: Airmail Special Delivery Cover From 1936

Thanks smauggie!

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