This is a large-format photograph that measures 6 1/2″ x 8 3/4.” It shows a zeppelin engine that has been removed from the airship.
This is an interesting early table medal for the Graf Zeppelin. The table medal is gilt-colored and measures 1″ in diameter. The obverse features the Graf Zeppelin in profile, along with the date 1928 and “Graf Zeppelin.” On the reverse we see something most interesting, the symbol for Shell Oil Co. Within the shell we also see the word “Shell.” I would expect that this is some kind of sponsorship deal that the Zeppelin Company had with Shell Oil.
This is an envelope that was flown on the Graf Zeppelin’s first U.S. to Germany flight. The Graf Zeppelin entered service in 1928. It was a major effort for the company, which struggled financially after theGraf Zeppelin’s death in 1917 and the war’s end. Hugo Eckner assumed the company’s control after the Graf’s death and navigated the company through a difficult period. He convinced the German government to include building a zeppelin to count toward German war reparations. Thus, the LZ-124 was constructed. Eckner personally commanded it in an historic 1924 flight and, with a great deal of publicity, turned it over to the U.S. Navy to become the U.S.S. Los Angeles. The historic flight began in Friedrichshafen, and ended in Lakehurst, NJ, a U.S. Navy station. Lakehurst was the East Coast base for zeppelin operations. The Graf Zeppelin and Hindenburg landed there. The Hindenburglanded for the last time as a fireball at Lakehurst in 1937. The U.S.S. Los Angeles continued in service until 1940, partly because it used the much safer helium (German zeppelins were forced to use highly flammable hydrogen due to the USA’s embargo).
Today we are offering a very special zeppelin-flown envelope. It was flown aboard the LZ-127, Graf Zeppelin, on its FIRST flight from the U.S. to Germany. It is an envelope that was a part of Joel E. Fischer, 40 Wall Street, New York’s personal stationery. The envelope’s upper right corner sports a one dollar U.S. stamp and a five-cent U.S. Air Mail stamp. It cost a total of $1.05 to send the envelope. [The equivalent cost in 2013 U. S. dollars is more than $14.00]! To the two stamps’ left is a cancellation for New York, NY on 27 October 1928 at 5:00 PM.
The envelope was mailed to a Mrs. Charles Robinson at a hotel in Paris, France. Directly below Mr. Fisher’s address is a special large, oval, hand stamp that contains the various information listed below.
“First Flight Air Mail”
“Via Graf Zeppelin”
A profile of the Graf Zeppelin
“United States ± Germany”
Two globes depicting North America and Europe
A date stamp of 28 October 1928
The lower left corner displays the following in black ink, “Via Zeppelin C/O Postmaster New York.” The reverse displays an inbound cancellation for Friedrichshafen dated 1 November 1928. The Graf Zeppelin carried a small post office on board. Mail was forwarded accordingly, based on its final destination.
This is a lovely envelope from a historic flight. It would make a fine addition to a zeppelin collection.
Over the years we have offered several examples of Karl Goetz’s beautifully executed table medal, which commemorates the voyage of the LZ-126 from Germany to the USA. As a part of the WW I’s reparations, Germany was obligated to turn over a zeppelin to the U. S. government. This all took place in 1924. Hugo Eckner was the company’s head. Like old Graf von Zeppelin himself, he was a real salesman and promoter. He knew if he was to save his company, he had to convince the world that zeppelins had potential not only as military tools, but as ultimate travel conveyances between countries. This was particularly true when crossing large bodies of water was involved. Ultimately, zeppelins made frequent trans-Atlantic voyages to the U.S., South America, and even Japan. The good doctor himself personally flew the LZ-126 to Boston, New York and finally, Lakehurst, NJ (scene of the destruction of the LZ-129 Hindenburg in May 1937), where it was handed over to American authorities and renamed the U. S. S. Los Angeles. Eckner went on to design and build the highly successful LZ-127 Graf Zeppelin and the LZ-129 Hindenburg. The table medal is quite unusual. All of the previous table medals I have seen commemorating the event were made of silver, nickel, or even aluminum. This example is gold-toned and is made of either brass or bronze, possibly. All of its other details are identical with the other medals. The obverse shows Hugo Eckner. The reverse shows the LZ-126 flying across the Atlantic. Below that are details of the flight. At the table medal’s very top somebody has neatly drilled a small hole so that it might have had a ring installed for supporting a ribbon, or for some other similar purpose.
I'm Kenneth (Ken) J. Greenfield, currently of New Port Richey, Florida, located on the West Coast of Florida in the Tampa Bay area. I started out as a collector of Imperial German Militaria, particularly items dealing with the Imperial German Air Service in the early 1960's. After more than forty years of avid collecting, I began to sell a few items to upgrade my collection and help finance my collecting "habit." I attended militaria shows, both to buy and sell. I wanted to spend more time at home and less traveling for the national companies that I had worked for; so, starting my own business seemed like an attractive alternative. I like nothing better than talking with others about militaria, and introducing newcomers to the joys of owning a "piece of history."