Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Post Office Badges

National Postal Museum Historian and Curator Nancy Pope posts on the museum's Pushing The Envelope blog, "The Post Office Department has long required its workers to carry identifying documents to prove that they are permitted to have access to the mail. One of the earliest such identifications was the pass signed by Postmaster General Benjamin Franklin in 1776 that identified William Goddard as the nation’s Riding Surveyor for the Post. Postmasters received signed certificates recognizing their appointments, mail agents carried special credentials while inspecting or protecting the mail."

She goes on to say, "The most commonly used identification credential in America’s postal history is the metal badge. Badges were first assigned to letter carriers in the 1880s, but before long just about every postal employee carried a badge of one type or another. The museum is home to dozens of postal badges, from the wildly ornate to inexpensively common."

Shown above, a New York City Postal Supervisor badge. 

To read Part I of Nancy's Badge of Service article, click here.

To view more Post Office Badges, click here.
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posted by Don Schilling at 12:01 AM