Blaze of Noon Author:Ernest K Gann It is about 1927. Since 1918 the U.S. Post Office has been flying the mail with its own pilots and planes; but now Congress has acknowledged the railroads' complaint that this puts government in competition with the private sector. "The Flying McDonalds," four barnstorming brothers, have been invited to sign on with a start-up airline. Against t... more »he eldest's better judgment, they do so.
Their Pitcairn Mailwing biplanes are a substantial improvement over the World War One surplus craft that have been used up to now; but lack radios and any reliable blind flying instruments. (The episode of a whiskey bottle being used as the world's first artificial horizon is based on truth.) Flying is as often as not at night, and in awful weather and visibility. And there's not that much mail to carry, given the fatality rate.« less