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American Mail Line History and Ephemera

The American Mail Line was a steamship line that ran between Seattle, Washington, and the Far East.

It was created in 1920, the then-rival Dollar's holdings included five vessels operated under the name of Admiral Line, along with a half-million-dollar investment in the American Mail Line, the fifth-largest company on the West Coast.

The American Mail Line continued to operate with a temporary subsidy until June 1938 and then discontinued regular services.

American Mail Line - And their affiliate Dollar Steamship Lines operated Trans-Pacific Routes, primarily from China and Japan to Canada and the United States.

In 1910 the Dollar Steamship Co. was reorganized under the title of the Dollar Steamship Lines, a subsidiary of the Dollar line. In 1922, the Dollar family gained control of Admiral Oriental, changing its name to American Mail Line in 1926.

The American Mail Line operated Trans-Pacific Steamship Routes between the ports of Seattle, Victoria, Yokohama, Kobe, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Manila, Honolulu, and many others. The Dollar Steamship Lines and American Mail Line offered Joint Service on many routes.

The lines operating out of the Pacific Northwest region suffered severely by the cancellation of the ocean-mail contracts, for they lacked means of support.

The American Mail Line continued to operate with a temporary subsidy until June 1938 and then discontinued regular services. Only the Dollar Line, running on reduced schedules pending reorganization, served the California region after 1937.

Ephemera from the American Mail Line in Date Order

Dinner Menu, SS President Jackson, American Mail Line, 27 October 1930

1930-10-27 SS President Jackson Dinner Menu

Vintage Bill of Fare from Monday, 27 October 1930 featured Poached Black Cod, Normande Sauce, Prime Ribs of Beef au Jus with Browned Potatoes, and Cottage Pudding, Lemon Sauce for dessert. The back of the menu includes a route map for the ships of the American Mail Line.

Front Cover - 1934-09-18 Passenger Manifest - SS President Jackson

1934-09-18 SS President Jackson Passenger List

  • Class of Passengers: Not Stated
  • Date of Departure: 18 September 1934
  • Route: Kobe to Seattle via Yokohama
  • Commander: Captain M. M. Jensen, U.S.N.R
Front Cover - 1934-09-18 Passenger Manifest - SS President Jackson

1934-09-22 SS President Jackson Passenger List

  • Class of Passengers: Not Stated
  • Date of Departure: 18 September 1934
  • Route: Yokohama to Seattle via Victoria
  • Commander: Captain M. M. Jensen, U.S.N.R
Front Cover, SS President Jackson Dinner Menu - 16 February 1935

1935-02-16 SS President Jackson Dinner Menu

Vintage Bill of Fare from Saturday, 16 February 1935 featured Poached Red Snapper, Mustard Sauce, Yeoung Chow Wor Mein, Canton Style, and Boston Cream Pie for dessert.

 

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