Lae’s First Airmailed Envelope Returned After 79 Years

An  envelope from the first airmail  sent from Lae to Australia nearly 80  years ago  has finally been framed and mounted on  a wall insidethe Lae Post office.

The envelope was initially brought to Lae two months ago by  75-year-old Australian,   Cliff Harvey, who  just wanted to find out ifthe Post Office would be interested in a tiny piece of history.


“It belonged to an uncle of my partner.   He dlied 15 years ago and this was left to us.”

A frame containing  the envelope and a picture of the Australian postmaster, Hugh Macmillan Lyon,   who sent  it to his mther was unveiled  yesterday on  its 79’s up>th anniversary.


Lyon   was serving as a postmaster in Lae inthe 1930s.   He was in those days one  of a small group  Australia’s living inthere. In 1934, he made history. He sentthe first airmail from Lae to Australia.  


The letter addressed to the most important woman in his life:   His mther  who lived in Sydney.   After 79 years, the envelope found its way back to its point of origin.


The envelope  beatrsthe original stamps  and is signed bythe crew  that flewthe   letter to  Australia.   The envelope  has been framed and mounted on the wall insidethe Lae post office.  


Whenthe second world war began,  Hugh Lyon, joinedthe Australian Army. As a major,  he was also in command of a  rifle battalion and fought the Japanese in Lae and surrounding areas.


Along withthe envelope, Cliff Harvey  has also sent  ther important pieces of history including   a  page  of  one  ofthe earliest newspapers  produced   here in Lae.   It doesn’t just contain any news. It announcesthe  end ofthe second world war  after  US  droppedthe atom bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. 


While each piece is of significant  historical importance,the item that stands outthe most isthe envelope  containing  a  letter  sent from a young man to his mther  79 years ago.

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