"From my Collection"
Some interesting examples from our collections
AN AIR FEE OF SIX PENCE HALFPENNY
As part of my Jamaican Collection, I've been interested in much air mail material but these are the real "firsts".
The initial air mail service to the Caribbean islands was operated by Pan American Airways (Pan Am) in 1929 from Miami to Cuba. Pan Am also wanted to fly to Jamaica, where huge Kingston Harbour would perfectly suit their large flying boats. In addition to serving the islands, the service would provide a rapid connection to the American interests in the Canal Zone.
The Jamaican Government insisted that a new air mail service should have a "British" component and on 30 December 1930 it was started as a joint operation with Pan Am and Caribbean Airways. The "British" company used a Fairchild single engined amphibian, while Pan Am flew four-engined Sikorsky Flying boats.
The postal charge to the USA was 9d (i.e. the surface letter rate of 2½d plus the "air fee" of 6½d). There was an additional charge of 4d for mail to the Canal Zone.
The second sheet includes a further first day cover marking the extension of the service to Haiti in 1932.