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Today in Ph History, Nov. 22, 1935, the first air link between the US & Manila was established



On November 22, 1935, a crowd of around 125,000 spectators gathered on the shores of San Francisco Bay to witness the take-off of the Pan American World Airways famed flying-boat, China Clipper, on the first trans-Pacific commercial flight in history.

Commanded by Captain Edwin C. Musick, the China Clipper soared over the Golden Gate and after 59 hours, 48 minutes flying-time landed on the waters of Manila Bay, establishing the first air-link between the Philippines and the United States.

The arrival of the China Clipper was an epochal event for the people of the Philippines. Until then, the only link with the Western world had been time-consuming surface travel. Via ship, it had taken passengers, mail, and express, weeks to reach the United States. The coming of the flying Clippers slashed that travel time to a matter of days!

For six years, Pan American continued to serve the Philippines. Then the Japanese struck. It was to be four years before the people of the Philippines again saw the familiar insignia of the Clippers. During the war interval, John Oppenheimer, PAA’s District Traffic Manager at Manila, and 33 other employees of the airline were interned at the Santo Tomas and Los Baños prison-camps. Two years after the Japanese surrender, the flying Clippers were playing a vital role in making Manila one of the great aerial crossroads of the world.

The American Chamber of Commerce in the Philippine Journal, Volume XXIII, Number 7, November 1947

Source: kahimyang

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