This Day in Georgia History
September 15, 1926
Atlanta Regular Airmail Service Began
The first regularly scheduled airmail service to and from Atlanta began on this morning. Tampa-based Florida Airways won the U.S. Post Office Department’s Contract Air Mail route 10 (CAM 10) in late 1925. According to the contract, airmail service would begin April 1, 1926, between Miami, Fort Myers, Tampa, and Jacksonville. Extension of the route to Atlanta was supposed to take place on June 1, 1926. However, lack of sufficient aircraft caused Florida Airways to miss the June 1 startup date for phase 2 of the CAM 10 route. After purchasing three 1926 Stinson Detroiter airplanes in August, Florida Airways was ready to begin service to Atlanta, which was rescheduled to start Sept. 15, 1926. At the last minute, Macon was added to the route. At 6:30 am on Sept. 15, a Florida Airways airplane flew out of Candler Field with the first cargo of airmail from Atlanta headed south for Macon, Jacksonville, Tampa, Fort Myers, and Miami. Also, at 6:30 am, Florida Airways airplane No. 8 flew out of Miami headed north for the same stops in reverse order. After a nine hour journey, the airplane No. 8 from Miami landed at Candler Field. The U.S. Post Office had prepared a special cancel to mark the first flight of CAM 10. This route was discontinued on the following Dec. 31 because of limited use. This was because the airports involved were not equipped with lights for night landing - and overnight train service got there just as quickly.