This Day in History: 1925-02-16
Second Assistant Postmaster General, Col. Paul Henderson celebrated the first six months of regular transcontinental air mail service by hailing the fact that San Francisco had been permanently moved to within 34 hours of New York City. The seven day a week service, made possible by night flying was becoming more and more popular and could only get better. A recent experimental flight had reduced flying time to 26 hours. All this had been accomplished in the six years since the first airmail route, between New York and Washington. The next six years should bring unbelievable further progress, he promised. He was confident that the cost of air mail service could be reduced from $2.63 to thirty cents per ton mile, less than 11% of the 1925 figure. This could only be done, he stated, of larger and more efficient planes could be built. He was certain that this would be accomplished soon. The air mail service would soon be able to expand to carrying freight and eventually passengers, he predicted. He did not believe, however, that the airplane would ever replicate the railroad as the way most Americans traveled.