||The Postal History covers presented on this site, are examples of commercial and personal mail carried on the Pan American Airways Pacific Clipper service from Sep 1, 1939 to Dec 7, 1941. There are covers from over 55 different nations on 6 continents. The covers are arranged alphabetically by country of origin for ease of viewing. Simply click on any Country Link below to bring up the covers from that country. You can move forward or backward from any page in the site. To view all of the covers in chronological sequence by date of posting, Click Here. (This is not recommended for dial-up users and those with slower computers.)||
Antigua (1) | Argentina (4) | Australia (5) | Bahrain (3) | Barbados (1) | Bermuda (2) | Bohemia & Moravia (1) | Bolivia (1) | Brazil (1) | Burma (4) | Canada (7) | Ceylon (1) | China (7) | Cuba (2) | Curacao (1) | Denmark (1) | Egypt (4) | Fiji (1) | France (1) | French Equatorial Africa (2) | French Polynesia (1) | Germany (1) | Gilbert & Ellice Islands (1) | Great Britain (6) | Greece (3) | Hong Kong (4) | Hungary (2) | India (5) | Indo China (5) | Iraq (5) | Ireland (1) | Japan (1) | Macau (3) | Malaya - Kedah (1) | Malaya - Perak (1) | Malaya (4) | Mexico (1) | Mozambique (1) | Netherlands (2) | Netherlands-East-Indies (7) | New Caledonia (6) | New Guinea (1) | New Hebrides (1) | New Zealand (3) | North Borneo (2) | Palestine (5) | Philippine Islands (7) | Portugal (4) | Sarawak (2) | South Africa (2) | Sudan (1) | Suriname (1) | Sweden (1) | Switzerland (2) | Thailand (4) | Trinidad & Tobago (3) | Turkey (1) | Uruguay (1) | United States 1 (11) | United States 2 (8) | United States 3 (10) |
Pan American Airways Pacific Clipper Service began in November of 1935, with the historic First Flight from San Francisco to Manila.
This first Pacific Air Route was designated FAM 14 (Foreign Air Mail route 14). From 1935 to 1939, FAM 14 served as the only trans-pacific airmail link
between the United States and the Orient. However, with the start of World War II, the volume of mail carried on the Pacific Clipper service began to increase,
as well as the number of countries that used the service. In July of 1940, Pan Am opened a "Southern Route" from San Francisco to Auckland, New Zealand.
This route was designated FAM 19. There was now trans-pacific airmail service to the Orient and to the South Pacific - including New Zealand and Australia. As World War II progressed, and more countries were drawn in to the
conflict, existing airmail routes were continually being adjusted and new routes were developed to create "safe" fly zones for commercial aircraft. When Italy entered the war in June of 1940,
all existing airmail routes over the Mediterranean were effectively closed. This created the need for an "alternate safe route" to connect countries in Western Europe with nations in Asia, the Middle East, Africa, Australia, and New Zealand.
As a result of this, a new long distance route developed - two-ocean airmail . For the first time in history,
airmail crossing both major oceans - the Atlantic and the Pacific, became a regular occurrence. Businesses and individuals
in Europe used the service to connect with countries in Asia, the Middle East, Africa, Australia, and New Zealand....and vice versa. The Pacific Clipper service was expensive,
but was safer, faster, and more reliable than other services available at the time. Because the service was expensive, Pacific Clipper covers are often franked with high face value stamps, otherwise seldom seen on cover.
From the start of World War II until the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, the Pacific Clipper service
connected businesses and people from a vast number of nations on six continents. The covers displayed on this site are historic evidence of the impact of Pan American's Pacific Clipper Service.
With the absence of backstamps and transit markings on some covers, I tried to use the words probable and possible when describing those routes. However, I am sure there are mistakes and oversights, so when reading this information, please do not be overly critical. I would certainly appreciate information and comments from viewers. Use the Contact Webmaster Link at the bottom of any page to send me an email.
ANA - Australia National Airlines
ANA - Australia National Airlines
KNILM - Koninklijk Nederlandsch Indische Luchtvaart Maatschappij