Chapter XIII - Our Postal Business

  • 1. The department.
  • 2. Rural free delivery.
  • 3. Classified mail matter.
  • 4. Postal rules.
  • 5. Foreign rates.
  • 6. Stamps.
  • 7. Postal cards.
  • 8. Registering letters.
  • 9. Special delivery.
  • 10. Money orders.
  • 11. Cashing P.O. orders.
  • 12. Advice.

Up to a few years ago, it was the city, town and village dweller who reaped the greatest benefit from the post office.

In dense communities carriers leave the mail at the place to which it is addressed. Where this is not done the walk for the mail is not far.

Now the purpose of our Government, which is of the people and by the people, is to treat all the people alike.

However, up to a few years ago the farmer, our most essential producer, had not a fair deal.

Fortunately things have changed and are still changing for the better.

Rural Free Delivery was an idea as just as it was grand, and as welcome as it was necessary.

The good work began October 1, 1896.

The purpose of rural free delivery is to accommodate dwellers in the country, whether farmers or not.

Through this branch of the service mails are carried daily, on fixed lines of travel, to people who otherwise would have to go long distances to reach a post office.

The Government requires that the states or counties shall keep in good condition the roads traversed by the mail carriers.

Gates must not obstruct, and it is required that every unfordable stream shall be bridged.

It is further required, as a condition for establishing a line for rural free delivery, that each route of twenty-four or more miles in length shall have at least one hundred families resident on either side.


Mail matter is divided into four classes. For each class a different rate is charged.

First Class:--All letters, and all other written matter, with a few exceptions, pay two cents for each ounce, or fraction of an ounce.

Second Class:--Newspapers, magazines, and other periodicals, one cent for each four ounces or fraction of four ounces. Publishers of periodicals, sending direct from place of publication, get a lower rate,--one cent a pound.

Third Class:--Books, circulars, and other printed matter, one cent for two ounces or fraction of two ounces.

Fourth Class:--Merchandise and miscellaneous articles, weighing not over four pounds, one cent for each ounce or fraction of an ounce.


1. On a tag, or the paper on which the address is written, the sender of third class matter may write "from" and add his own name and address. 2. On the blank leaf of a book, forwarded as third class matter, the sender may write a dedication or inscription, but it must not be in the form of a letter. 3. Fourth class matter must be so wrapped that the postal authorities can examine the contents without much trouble. 4. Such articles as glass, nails, needles or other matter that might work injury if it came loose, must be enclosed in two separate wrappings, or a double case. 5. Poisons, explosives, inflammable substances, and live animals are excluded from the mails. 6. Firearms may only be sent in detached parts. 7. All alcoholic liquors are regarded as explosive.

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