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A Post About Parcel Post January 11, 2017

Posted by nrhatch in Humor, People.

Pooh-With-MailbagBack in the early days of Parcel Post, people  didn’t just mail their mail . . . they also mailed their children.

Nope.  Not kidding.

I just read about it on Smithsonian and though you might want a peak too:  Special Delivery

Aah . . . going by post is way better than going postal!



1. Rainee - January 11, 2017

A old version of mail-order brides? 🙂

nrhatch - January 11, 2017

Haha, yes! The postal service soon realized that brides could be bulky and cumbersome . . . so they encouraged single men to mail the mail order form by mail while purchasing a one way plane/train ticket for the bride!

2. Jill Weatherholt - January 11, 2017

Probably safer than flying, eh? I loved that photo, Nancy!

nrhatch - January 11, 2017

That kid’s face is priceless . . . and to think it only cost $0.15 in stamps to mail him!

3. Under the Oaks - January 11, 2017

Happy to hear that they traveled with trusted postal workers… I think.

nrhatch - January 11, 2017

It was a different planet back then, eh?

4. Ally Bean - January 11, 2017

Well, whatever works, works… I guess.

nrhatch - January 11, 2017

The Postmaster General did his best to outlaw the practice . . . but he couldn’t be everywhere at once.

5. Tippy Gnu - January 11, 2017

When I worked for the postal service, if a kid wasn’t marked “Fragile” they got tossed to the bottoms of parcel bins, with more parcels piled on top of them. But if they were marked “Fragile”, they were gently lowered to the bottoms of parcel bins, with more parcels piled on top of them.

nrhatch - January 11, 2017

Ha! That reminds me of the scene in The Grinch (Jim Carey version) when poor Cindy Lou Who almost gets stamped by the stamp machine in the midst of the Holi-Who Rush!

6. Tiny - January 11, 2017

Ha! I’m happy those ‘parcels’ had a better destiny that the Christmas cards found in a post pouch tossed into the snow in Sweden this year….my sister’s card – sent mid December – just arrived today 🙂

nrhatch - January 11, 2017

Good thing her card wasn’t a kid, she would have arrived half famished!

7. colonialist - January 11, 2017

Imagine mailing a young male – if he had been a chimney sweep, would that have been blackmail?

nrhatch - January 11, 2017

I’m picturing the postman trying to get Dick Van Dyke (Bert the chimney sweep) to stand still long enough for the stamp application to take with Julie Andrews (Mary Poppins) sniffing in the background!

colonialist - January 12, 2017

Or feeding him a spoonful of sugar!

nrhatch - January 12, 2017

Or getting him to stop laughing long enough to float down from the ceiling!

8. Joanne Sisco - January 11, 2017

What an interesting piece of history. I had no idea … glad they came to their senses relatively early in the process!

nrhatch - January 11, 2017

Yes, the postmaster general had to stamp out the practice!

Joanne Sisco - January 12, 2017

Common sense prevailed!

9. Debra - January 11, 2017

Great little story and a reminder, too, of a fascinating website. I’ll listen to the podcast later. The photo couldn’t be any cuter!

nrhatch - January 11, 2017

Smithsonian sends some great articles to my in box. This photo was too cute not to share.

10. viviankirkfield - January 12, 2017

Oh, how funny, Nancy! Thanks for the chuckle. Maybe that’s where Jeff Brown, the author of the Flat Stanley series got the idea for his books. 😉

nrhatch - January 12, 2017

I’ve never read anything from the Flat Stanley series . . . so I checked out its charming synopsis:

Stanley Lambchop and his younger brother Arthur are given a big bulletin board by their father to display pictures and posters. He hangs it on the wall over Stanley’s bed. During the night the board falls from the wall, flattening Stanley in his sleep. He survives and makes the best of his altered state, and soon he is entering locked rooms by sliding under the door, and playing with his younger brother by being used as a kite.

One special advantage is that Flat Stanley can now visit his friends by being mailed in an envelope. Stanley even helps catch some art museum thieves by posing as a painting on the wall. Eventually, Stanley is tired of being flat and Arthur changes him back to his proper shape with a bicycle pump.

11. L. Marie - January 12, 2017

Oh my goodness! That photo is hilarious. (The baby looks heavy.) I guess you really had to know and trust your postal carrier. I can’t imagine mailing a baby to anyone!

nrhatch - January 12, 2017

I agree about the baby . . . he’s a solid little thing!

My grandfather handled a rural route delivery in Vermont at the turn of the last century. I know he once delivered a jar of preserves to someone farther down his route . . . and got to keep a 2nd jar of preserves for his effort. But I don’t know that he ever got asked to “deliver a baby” (in either sense of that phrase).

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