With an ear-splitting roar, the downward rush of incandescent gas is deflected up and out by the cup-shaped walls of the bunker. Slowly, the missile rises, gathering momentum with every foot of altitude. Climbing high into space at 10,000 mph the winged postman is guided on its course by electronic pilot installations spaced across the country. With engines cut, it begins the long, roller-coaster dip to the Pacific. As it nears the coast, controls are actuated and the huge missile turns slowly end-for-end. Tail first, with rocket again soaring, it gradually brakes it descent. Now the landing controls at its destination take over. Lightly, it touches down on its landing pad.
The postman’s engine is cut. A reversal of the New York procedure whisks the merger container into the hands of its addressee by 10 a. m. Pacific Standard Time. Quickly countersigned and witnessed, it begins its return trip. Our New York executives receive the papers at 2:30 p.m.—in plenty of time to close the deal.
When will this closely-coordinated missile mail service be in operation? According to Hall L. Hibbard, head of Lockheed Aircraft’s Missile Division, missile mail and freight will be possible by 1965.