F277 Heinz Modern Aviation and Famous Air Pilots Album Variations
Beginning in 1935, Heinz was issuing cards in their Rice Flakes and Breakfast Wheat products. If you cut out the 57s from the sides of two packages, you would receive a "beautiful new Album with spaces for each card."
The Album arrived in an envelope with 2 insert cards and a 4-page letter.
Airplane Letter (Above); Pilot Letter (Below):
After collecting a few of these Heinz Albums, and consulting with Allen, I have found a few variations. While the pages differ within the Album, Im going to use the code date on the bottom right corner of page 14 to define the variations:
F277-2 Famous Airplanes:
Although ACC'd second, the F277-2 Famous Airplanes (Bold) series was the first Airplane series issued. The only variation I have seen for this album is coded as 18235:
F277-1 Famous Airplanes:
The F277-1 Famous Airplanes (Script) series was issued after F277-2. I have seen 4 variations for this album - coded 18235, 15336, 13137, and RB-1:
In my opinion, the 18235 variant is just a F277-2 Album with a F277-1 cover, as the interior contents are identical to the F277-2 18235 Album.
F277-4 Famous Aviators:
For the F277-4 Famous Aviators series, I have 5 variations for this album. There are three code dates 32236, "No Number" (Blank) and RB-2. For the first two code dates, I have variations with a cut and replaced page 5/6 clearly glued into the Album. To date, I have not seen an Album, coded RB-2, with a replaced page 5/6 (does anyone have one of these?).
[[Note, there is some speculation that an Album exists that has the original 5 pilots printed on page 5/6. Albums exist with a replacement page clearly glued in. Some of those albums (with a 32236 print run), correspond with the print run of the First Pilot Series, which includes the Rare Five Aviators. Since the page, which would have had the Five Rare Aviators, was cut out, it's reasonable to believe albums originally existed with the Five Rare Aviators. So, they probably exist. But the real question is - did any survive?]]
Note that there is also a variation in the 4-page (Pilot) letter:
The RB-3 (Pilot) letter probably came with the RB-2 (Pilot) Album.
[[ While I do not have a copy of the RB-4 (Airplane) letter, it probably came with the RB-1 (Airplane) Album.]]
Im still in the process of looking at the insert card issue dates.
The original (Pilot) print run was in November 1936 (32236). Heinz pulled the 5 rare pilots from production and in April 1937 (second print run) it "appears" Heinz only produced the five supplement/replacement aviators. Although the NSB shows a Doolittle card with a 1937 print run date, that's either a mis-print, typo, or an extremely rare short-print. So, the only Aviator cards with a 1937 print run code should be the 5 replacement Aviators (2,5,7,8,9) and none of the other card numbers. Incidentally, the replaced 5 will never indicate a 1936 print run. Can anyone confirm that there are Famous Aviator (F277-4) cards coded 13137 that are NOT the replaced pilot cards (2,5,7,8,9)?