Friday, February 26, 2010

Mail Delivery 12 Times a Day!?!

Randall Stross writes in the New York Times, "In Victorian London, though service wasn’t 24/7, it was close to 12/6. Home delivery routes would go by every house 12 times a day — yes, 12. In 1889, for example, the first delivery began about 7:30 a.m. and the last one at about 7:30 p.m. In major cities like Birmingham by the end of the century, home routes were run six times a day."

He quotes Catherine J. Golden, a professor of English at Skidmore College and author of Posting It: The Victorian Revolution in Letter Writing (2009) as saying, "In London, people complained if a letter didn’t arrive in a couple of hours.”

An overview of Posting It on the University of Florida website points out, "Although 'snail mail' may seem old fashioned and outdated in the twenty-first century, Catherine Golden argues that the creation of the Penny Post in Victorian England was just as revolutionary in its time as e-mail and text messages are today."

Shown above, a British mail carrier in 1839.

To read the entire article, click here.
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posted by Don Schilling at 12:01 AM