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Illinois Congressman Peter F. Mack Jr. (1916-1986) sent this personal and privately printed Christmas card in 1956. Accompanying it is a small "Re-Elect Mack to Congress" political button.
A native of Carlinville, Illinois, Peter Mack served in Congress from 1949 to 1963. He served on the congressional committee investigating the infamous "Payola" TV game show scandal of the 1950s. He also sponsored the famous Switchblade Knife Act of 1958, which outlawed switchblade knives like the one used by James Dean in Rebel Without a Cause (1955).
A licensed commercial pilot, Mack enlisted in the United States Navy in 1942 where he served four years as a naval aviator. In 1951, the "Flying Congressman" (as he was known) piloted the single-engine plane Friendship Flame on a round-the-world solo flight. As per his service in World War II as a naval aviator commander, Mack is interred in Arlington National Cemetery.
Thick card reads in red typescript: "Wishing You A Merry Christmas With A Happy and Successful New Year, Peter F. Mack, Jr., Member of Congress." Comes in mailing envelope hand-addressed by Mack postmarked Springfield, Ill., Dec. 19, 1953.
Card and political pin are in near mint condition. Rare item from Illinois' "Flying Congressman."
This item comes directly from the estate of Charles "Chaw" Mank Jr. (1902-1985), noted songwriter, author, bandleader, record producer, sheet music publisher, psychic, radio personality, silent movie theater organist, world champion pen pal, inveterate collector and Hollywood/music fan club pioneer.