First Stock Offering Absent Afterthought New Name

Veterans Air was almost not officially Veterans Air

The stock certificate for the company’s first public offering was printed for Air Express Company.  Before it was issued on November 9, 1945, as an afterthought, “Veterans” was added to the official name.  Look closely at this certificate belonging to Jack Stettner, an original founder and a Veterans pilot and manager. 

“V E T E R A N S'” is typewritten at top of Air Express Company and twice more – squeezed in at the beginning of the second and third lines to read VETERANS’ AIR EXPRESS and then immediately over the official seal. The offering is signed by Nellie Brenner, Secretary Treasurer and Saunie Gravely, President.

The story goes that the founders altered the name because they were proud of who they really were.  Plus, they hoped Veterans in their official name might help win cargo contracts with private business — and the government.

This "Air Express Company" Common stock issue dated Nov 9, 1945 belongs to Jack Stettner, one of the original founders. You can see the word "Veterans" added by typewriter acknowledging the official company name on the Veterans Air first stock offering.

Dear Reader, to date, family and historical records on Nellie & Arthur Brenner remain elusive. They both played such vital, active roles in the founding of Veterans Air, finding information on them would be treasure.

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