The Spirit Of America

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The Spirit of America

The Spirit of America

American Express is the greatest single factor in stimulating American travel abroad. By its promotional advertising and sales in the United States, the comfort and convenience afforded tourists by its skilful planning of trips to Europe, and the services offered them by its 94 offices and sub-offices on that continent, it first produces the will to travel and then provides the facilities for the enjoyment of the trip. This encouragement of American tourism is one more important service which it renders both to America and to other friendly nations.

In the history of American business it has played a role that far transcends any mere moving of people and goods around in the world, or even the aid and comfort it has given to so many Travellers. That role is unofficial American ambassador of good will to the whole world.

From the time of Dalliba in France and Thomas in England to the present day, American Expressmen have won high esteem and affection in the countries in which they have been stationed. The traditional integrity, courtesy, and eagerness to serve which form the century old policy of the company have made its flag a symbol of friendship. The strength of this feeling is evidenced by the fact that even in the countries with whom we have been on the verge of war - in Germany in 1940, for example - there was no hostility against American Express. On the contrary, many Germans went out of their way to make friendly gestures.

Though American Express is in one sense an international institution, in its methods, philosophy, and spirit it is typical of America at its best, and this fact is generally recognized and appreciated around the world.

It is not too much to say that American Express has done more than any other private company to promote understanding of the American way of life and to give people throughout the world a warm and friendly feeling for Americans. In an era during which the United States has assumed the leadership of free nations everywhere against the forces of despotism, this has been the American Express Company's greatest service to its country.

As it stands today, with its great international organization, American Express is typical of a world-conscious America. Also typical of America is the fact that, as American Express moves into its second century of service, its eyes are fixed not on the past, but on the future.

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The Nazis before the United States entered World War II caused its representatives to be expelled from Germany and the occupied countries, and earned them a curious accolade from the German Government, which stated that "they were guilty of activities not in the best interests of the Great German Reich."

The largest free service performed by American Express is forwarding mail. The Paris office employs thirty mail clerks who handle up to 8,000 letters a day in the season. Many people give their address as "c/o American Express, Paris," who never bought a Travellers Cheque or so much as a sight-seeing coupon. Yet their letters are delivered or forwarded to them without charge.

The uniformed representatives of American Express will go to almost any lengths to help Travellers in difficulty. They are the shepherds and the tourists are their Rocks, and when a stray lamb is rescued there is the customary rejoicing.

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