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History Travel

Pan Am “First Moon Flights” Club

Between 1968 and 1971, Pan American World Airways issued over 93,000 “First Moon Flights” Club cards to those eager to make a reservation for the first commercial flight to the Moon. The cards were free. I was a proud member.

The Club originated from a waiting list that is said to have started in 1964, when Gerhard Pistor, an Austrian journalist, went to a Viennese travel agency requesting a flight to the Moon. The agency forwarded his request to Pan Am, which accepted the reservation two weeks later and replied that the first flight was expected to depart in 2000.

On July 20, 1969, Neil Armstrong became the first human to step foot on the moon.

On September 9, 1969, the United States Postal Service issued a 10 cent postage stamp showing an astronaut walking on the surface of the moon. It was called the “First Man on the Moon” postage stamp. According to the National Postal Museum, the stamp was made from the same master die that the astronauts took with them to the moon. Additionally, it was the largest stamp the United States had issued up to that point.

Pan Am sent members of the “First Moon Flights” Club “First Day of Issue” envelopes. I was excited to get mine and have kept it all this time. I now doubt I will make it to the moon. But it was an exciting thought.

Letter from Pan Am to First Moon Flights Members about the “First Man on the Moon” first day cover.

Unfortunately, Pan Am did not survive. It went bankrupt in 1991.

Categories
Travel

Air France’s New Safety Video Shows Off the Best of France

And a quick look at how this stylish video was made:

Categories
Travel

COVID Testing Required for International Air Travelers Starting January 26

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued an Order on January 12, 2021 requiring proof of a negative COVID-19 test or documentation of having recovered from COVID-19 for all air passengers arriving from a foreign country to the US. This Order will be effective on January 26, 2021.

This Order applies to all air passengers, 2 years of age or older, traveling into the US, including US citizens and legal permanent residents.

The Wall Street Journal has a helpful guide to the new rule.

The coronavirus is controlling the entire world.

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Travel

TSA: 2020 Passenger Traffic Fluctuated Between 24% and 61% of 2019 Volume

On January 4, 2020, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) reported the final daily figure of estimated travel volume for calendar year 2020. In 2020, the agency screened 324 million passengers, which is only 39 percent of the 824 million total passengers screened in 2019.

TSA also reported a big swing in passenger volume in 2020:

On April 14, 2020, TSA reported its lowest travel volume of only 87,500 passengers throughout all TSA checkpoints nationwide, representing just 4 percent of passenger volume recorded on the same weekday in 2019. During TSA’s historically busiest time of year, average travel volume per day between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Eve in 2020 continued to fluctuate between a low of 24 percent and a high of 61 percent of 2019 travel volume during the same period. TSA anticipates daily travel volumes will continue to rise steadily and follow seasonal patterns. However, the agency expects volume will remain well below pre-pandemic levels through most of 2021. 

Categories
History Photography Travel

The Sheridan-Kalorama Neighborhood of DC

Art on Call, Washington, DC, Artist: Peter Waddell Photograph: © David H. Enzel, 2021

Yesterday, I was walking in the Sheridan-Kalorama neighborhood of Washington, DC. I stumbled across one of the many works of art in Washington’s abandoned police and fire call boxes. The project is called “Art on Call.” I have been making photos of these call boxes as I come across them. They have educated me about the city’s rich history.

This call box explains that three chief justices of the United States Supreme Court lived in Sheridan-Kalorama:

  • William Howard Taft, the 27th President of the United States was appointed Chief Justice by President Harding, after serving as President. Taft is the only person to have served in both of these offices. He lived at 2215 Wyoming Avenue.
  • Charles Evans Hughes, a U.S. Secretary of State and an unsuccessful candidate for President in 1916, became Chief Justice in 1930 and resided at 2223 R Street.
  • Harlan Fiske Stone, a U.S. Attorney General, occupied 1919 24th Street. during his tenure.

In addition, other prominent Supreme Court justices have lived in Sheridan-Kalorama including Louis Brandeis, Joseph McKenna and Sandra Day O’Connor, the first female justice of the Supreme Court.

The rendering of the Supreme Court in the call box is the creation of Peter Waddell, a native of New Zealand who came to Washington in 1992 and became a U.S. citizen in 2002. Waddell’s beautiful paintings focus on America’s history and architecture. Waddell’s view of the United States is inspiring.

The Sheridan-Kalorama neighborhood also includes a number of diplomatic residences, including the residence of the French ambassador at 2221 Kalorama Road, shown below.

The French ambassador’s residence in Washington, D.C. is located at 2221 Kalorama Road, N.W., in the Kalorama neighborhood of northwest Washington, D.C. The residence was built in 1910. © David H. Enzel, 2021

The Sheridan-Kalorama neighborhood is worth visiting.

Categories
History Travel

‘Art On Call’ – Washington, DC

From 2000 until 2009, Cultural Tourism DC led “Art on Call”, a city-wide effort to restore Washington’s abandoned police and fire call boxes as neighborhood artistic icons. Cultural Tourism DC partnered with the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities and the District Department of Transportation on this initiative. The project is now managed by the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities.

Art on Call
A selection of “Art on Call” in Washington, DC