Boston Airport – February, 1934

Boston Airport – February, 1934 


Early Air Mail Advertisement

Early Air Mail Advertisement

     On March 1, 1934, the U.S. Army Eastern Zone Air Service announced it had cancelled until further notice all air mail flights to Boston due to hazardous landing conditions at the airport there.  The decision came after there had been three air mail plane accidents on the narrow runways within four days.  Apparently the runways had been plowed of recently fallen snow, but the mounds were piled high right at the edges.

     On February 26th and 27th, two air mail planes were damaged upon landing when their wings clipped the snow drifts. 

     On the morning of February 28th, a plane piloted by Lt. Charles E. Flaherty, carrying 81 pounds of mail hit another snowdrift damaging the propeller and both wings.  (It wasn’t stated if Lt. Flaherty was injured or not.)  

     Source: New York Times, “Air Mail Cancels Trips To Boston”, March 1, 1934





Willington, CT – September 3, 1927

Willington, Connecticut – September 3, 1927

Missing Airmail Pilot 

      At 7:15 p.m. on the evening of September 2, 1927, a U.S. Airmail plane belonging to Colonial Air Transport Inc. left Boston bound for Brainard Field in Hartford.  The pilot was identified as Daniel G. Cline, 33, reported to be “one of the most experienced in the service of Colonial.”  There was also an unidentified passenger aboard.

     The trip was to take one hour, but while in-route Cline encountered misty rain and foggy weather, and was forced to make a landing in a field in Duxbury, Massachusetts.  There he waited for the weather to clear. 

     At 10: 15 p.m. he took off again, but left his passenger behind.  However foul weather forced him to make another emergency landing, this time in Webster, Massachusetts.  There he waited until after midnight to resume his journey.  After Cline’s departure, officials at Brainard Filed were informed that his aircraft  was once again airborne, and should be arriving within a half-hour.   But Cline never arrived, and when no word of another forced landing was received, so a search was instituted.

     The missing plane was discovered in a thickly wooded area along a rocky hill on the farm of John Hitsky, located in an area known as Moose Meadows in the town of Willington, Connecticut.  Cline’s body was found inside.

     Cline was the first mail pilot flying the newly established Boston – Hartford – New York airmail route to die in the line of duty.  Two others would follow.


     Woonsocket Call, “Air Express Plane 16 Hours Overdue, Believed To Be Lost”, September 3, 1927, pg. 1   

     New York Times, “Air Express Pilot Dead After Crash”, September 4, 1927

     Evening Star, (Wash. D.C.), “Mail Pilot Dies As Plane Crashes”, September 4, 1927, pg. 4



Mt. Lamentation, Berlin, CT – September 17, 1929

Mt. Lamentation, Berlin, Connecticut – September 17, 1929 

     On the night of September 17, 1929, Henry H. Tallman, 33, a U.S. air mail pilot with Colonial Air Transportation, departed Brainard Field, in Hartford, bound for Newark, New Jersey, with 500 pounds of mail.  The weather was foggy, and ten minutes into the flight Tallman plowed into the side of 720 ft. high Mt. Lamentation.  The plane, a Pitcairn PA-6 Mailwing, exploded and burned on impact killing Tallman instantly. 

     Shortly before the crash Tallman was reportedly flying low to the ground, and almost struck a bus, and then a house, before hitting the mountain.  The owner of the home told reporters that the plane was within twenty feet of the ground seconds before the crash.

     Mr. Tallman had been flying the Boston to Newark route since January of 1929, having replaced Edward C. Carrington who died in a mail-plane crash at “Bald Hill”  Connecticut, on January 5th.  (The town and location of Bald Hill not specified.)  Carrington had replaced another air mail pilot, Daniel G. Cline, who died on September 3, 1927 while flying over Willington, Connecticut. 

     Henry Tallman was a veteran of World War I.  He was survived by his wife and daughter in Ridgewood, New Jersey.  He’s buried in Valleau Cemetery in Ridgewood.  (See  memorial # 39889207)

     Tallman was the third airmail pilot to die in the line of duty flying the Boston – Hartford – New York route.  


     New York Times, “Jersey Mail Pilot Killed In Crash”, September 18, 1929

     The Troy Times, “Pilot Killed When Plane Hit Mt. In Fog, September 18, 1929

     New Britain Herald, “Night Mail Pilot Killed In Berlin As Plane Crashes And Is burned Near Peak Of Mount Lamentation”, (With photo), September 18, 1929




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