Germany was one of the first nations to offer airmail. They did so by issuing a special postcard. They were highly-prized by both aviation collectors and postage stamp collectors. The special route that was set up went from Mannheim to Heidelberg and returned. Its obverse features an airplane in flight with the legend below it stating “Erste Deutsche Luft=Post” (First German Air Mail). Flanking this scene are views of Mannheim and Heidelberg, along with Mannheim Heidelberg and Heidelberg Mannheim.
A message has been penned on the reverse. In the lower left corner we see that the price is twenty pfennigs for the postcard, and that it is for use in airmail. The cancelled stamp (five pfennigs) appears in the upper top right corner. The postcard was mailed in Mannheim, going to Heidelberg on 19 May 1912. [The USA did not begin airmail service until the 1920’s].
This is a very attractive and historic postcard that was sent by airmail more than one hundred years ago.