USPS: Worker witnessed major postal moment in 1970

Postal worker Ursula Hennessy doesn’t just remember the August day 50 years ago when President Richard Nixon signed the landmark Postal Reorganization Act. She was — to borrow a line from “Hamilton” — in the room where it happened. Hennessy was in her 20s when she joined the Post Office Department in 1969 as the…

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Landmark postal law signed 50 years ago

This week marks the 50th anniversary of the most comprehensive postal legislation since the founding of the republic — the law that transformed the Post Office Department into the Postal Service. President Richard Nixon signed the Postal Reorganization Act on Aug. 12, 1970, but as Publication 100, the Postal Service’s official history book explains, the…

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Where U.S. Mail Went to Die

By Ashley Bowen-Murphy – October 28, 2015 The “dead” mail arrived constantly, black bags filled with almost 30,000 letters and parcels each day. These high casualties caused only a general sense of alarm among late 19th and early 20th century Americans. Postal clerks in Washington, D.C. sorted through all letters pronounced dead, separating the truly…

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Owney the Mail Dog Still Lives, Sort of, in DC

By Matt Blitz – September 4, 2015 Before Rin Tin Tin, Sergeant Stubby, Lassie and Checkers, there was Owney the dog. During the late 19th century, this terrier-mix was the most famous dog in America, if not the world. As the Railway Mail Service’s mascot, he rode the rails delivering smiles and mail across the…

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USPS: Mailbox milestones – Rural boxes have come a long way

The larger mailboxes being tested in states like Colorado and North Dakota may seem a little unusual, but rural boxes have been evolving from the beginning. When the Post Office Department started Rural Free Delivery in 1902, customers were forced to make their own mailboxes using materials they found around their homes and farms. Rural…

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