Photograph of Army Air Corps pilots Maj. Reuben Fleet and Lt. George Boyle
Major Reuben Fleet of the Army Air Corps (left) and Lieutenant George Boyle (right) standing near a Curtiss Jenny (JN-4H) airplane on May 15, 1918. Major Fleet was tasked by the US Army and the Post Office Department with arranging the first regularly schedule airmail service flights in the United States. The flights began on May 15, 1918 with flights between Washington, DC, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and New York City. Major Fleet and Lt. Boyle were photographed at Washington’s temporary airmail field on the polo grounds near the Potomac River.
The pair are admiring Major Fleet’s new wristwatch. The Hamilton Watch company presented each of the Army Air Corps airmail pilots with a new wristwatch in honor of their historic flights.
National Postal Museum, Benjamin Lipsner Collection