Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Captain Midnight Flight Patrooool!

On a recent trip to the Fox Valley Antique Mall in Appleton, Wisconsin with my friend Elise, I came across an entire lot of ephemera from Green Bay, my hometown.  One of the items included was this:

AHHH!!  Isn't it fantastic?!  It's for a card-carrying member of Captain Midnight's Flight Patrol!  The only name on it is just "William".  Judging by the penmanship, I'm going to say that William was about 8 at the time, which would make him around 82 years old today!  How do I know this?

In doing my research for this card, I discovered that Skelly Gasoline was the sponsor of Captain Midnight (more on the show later) for only two seasons: 1938-1940.  If William were indeed 8 years old then, that would put his birth date around 1930, which would make him 82-ish.  Doesn't that just sound bizarre?

I LOVE this card, because it hearkens to that time where kids actually wanted to be heroes.  Does any kid want that anymore?  When I first saw it, it actually reminded me of that part in "Up", when Carl tries to emulate Charles Muntz, the aviator/explorer who I'm going to assume was based on Charles Lindbergh (the hero part)/Amelia Earhart (the disappearing part).  He sees the amazing things Charles does in a newsreel before a matinee.

Well, Captain Midnight is sort of like that.  It began as a radio serial in 1938, with the hero being a part of a Secret Squadron of fighter pilots.  When the U.S. entered WWII, it was even more popular, as the protagonist (real name: Jim Albright) was fighting more conventional villains in the war effort.

All Captain Midnight Flight Patrol members had to live by the code, which is spelled out on the back of the card:
"As a Junior Pilot of the Captain Midnight Flight Patrol, I pledge myself to be Honest in all things, Fair to all others, Brave in the face of danger, Courteous to my superiors and elders and Alert at all times to the fine principles of our Flight Patrol."
I like that.  :D

Looks like William got more perks every time Dad hit the filling station.  And because of these here Internetz, you can see for yourself all of the wonderful Captain Midnight premiums (from Skelly) that were available!


  1. Replies
    1. Thanks, Jo! This little card is so much fun, isn't it? :D