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UMBERTO NOBILE - TYPED LETTER SIGNED 11/15/1960 - HFSID 297334

UMBERTO NOBILE The Italian who overflew the North Pole with Amundsen in 1926 discusses the absence of a commemorative stamp honoring that flight. Typed Letter signed: "U. Nobile", 1 page, 8½x11. Rome, 1960 November 15.

Sale Price $450.00

Reg. $500.00

Condition: fine condition
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UMBERTO NOBILE
The Italian who overflew the North Pole with Amundsen in 1926 discusses the absence of a commemorative stamp honoring that flight.
Typed Letter signed: "U. Nobile", 1 page, 8½x11. Rome, 1960 November 15. On Italian-language letterhead of the Engineering Faculty, Aeronautics Institute, University of Naples to Moshe Y. Goodman, Jerusalem. In full: "Your letter of October 29th reached me some time ago, but I have not answered it sooner, as I had asked a friend of mine who was going to London to make some inquiries from the famous philatelic firm of Stanley Gibbons there. To the best of my knowledge, no special stamp was issued, either in Italy or in Norway, to mark the 'NORGE' flight. Stanley Gibbons' catalogue lists, however (under their reference number 176-20 to 182-20, inclusive) a set of Norwegian air stamps issued in 1925 under the title 'Amundsen's Polar Flight.' I think this must be what you have in mind. It does not, of course, refer to the Transpolar voyage of the 'NORGE,' but to Amundsen's previous attempt to reach the North Pole with two Italian-built flying-boats. When one of these was damaged, both had to make a forced landing. The whole party remained for some weeks on the ice, until they were able to make a runway for the second machine, into which they all crowded for the return flight. Their safe return was greeted with great rejoicing in Norway, and it was no doubt on account of this that the stamps were issued. My friend was shown three unused stamps from this set of seven, which were priced at 30/- (thirty shillings); so the complete set is no doubt expensive. The design of each stamp was identical, the colour varying with the different values. Trusting that this information will be of use to you, Yours sincerely". Italian aeronautical engineer and Arctic explorerUmberto Nobile (1885-1978) began designing semi-rigid airships for the Italian air force during World War I. In 1926, on of Nobile's dirigibles, the Norge, took Norwegian Roald Amundsen, Nobile (as pilot) and an accompanying crew on what may have been the first flight over the North Pole, and was certainly the first flight over the Arctic from Europe to North America. (For years, American explorers Richard Byrd and Richard Bennett were credited with an earlier over-flight in a Fokker F-VII aircraft, but that claim has now been largely discredited.) In 1928, another Nobile airship, the Italia, crashed on an Arctic mission, with loss of lives despite a prolonged rescue effort. Nobile's competitors, and his enemies in Mussolini's government, scapegoated him, and his airship building for Italy was at an end. Nobile did some aeronautical work for the US and Soviet governments, and sat out World War II. He lived long enough to participate in observances of the 50th anniversary of his historic flights. Multiple mailing folds. Lightly toned at edges. Otherwise, fine condition.

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