July 1st National Postal Worker Day

Six days a week most of us look forward to the arrival of the mail. Well, at least we hope we get something good. It’s sort of turned into junk mail these days but it doesn’t change the idea of something coming to us that can change our day into something better. Like the mail or not we all thank our Postal Workers for all they do. Of course we see the one who delivers it to our door, or mailbox, but there are many many more that work to keep the mail moving. It requires some 490,000 in the US to get the job done while that person that delivers it to our door, well they walk between 4 and 8 miles a day.

How to celebrate – Thank your local mail person. Leave treats for your mail person. Use your postal system to keep it in business.

February 4th Thank A Mailman Day

So this must be an older bizarre holiday since the proper term should be Mail Person Day. I love our Mailman, he is great. He rushes those things we need rushed, he checks to make sure we have stamped our mail correctly, he brings things to our door when he doesn’t have to. Our Mail Person doesn’t do any of that. Anyway, your mail, or at least some of it, is important. Your Carrier will visit you six days a week, regardless of the weather and sometimes (During holidays) they even come seven days a week. They really do work hard and rarely get thanked, so take the time to thank them for what they do.

How to celebrate – Thank your Mail Person. Meet your carrier with a sealed bottle of water or juice. Write a letter to your Mail Person, thanking them for their service.

December 9th Christmas Card Day

Today is sort of a reminder that we should be getting our Christmas cards together and sending them out so they arrive in time. Whether you celebrate Christmas or not, the Christmas card is a simple way to let someone know you are thinking of them. It can be a “Holiday” card instead, it just happens to come at Christmas. The Christmas Card was invented by Sir Henry Cole in 1843 (Kinda odd, we certainly hope you do not get a lump of coal for Christmas this year). Even those cards with the picture of the family in those gaudy Christmas outfits are welcomed. They should be fun, colorful and let people know you care.

How to celebrate – Send out your Christmas Cards. Find a way to send a card noone else can send. Make your own Christmas Cards this year.

February 4th Thank A Mailman Day

Aren’t we supposed to call them Mail-person now? Anyway, you really should thank your mailman, person, for all they do. Rain or shine, hot or cold, they deliver your mail. With all the online shopping these days they are kept very busy. Add to that the regular mail it’s a lot.

Does anybody actually send letters anymore!?! I haven’t received one or sent one for as long as I can remember (Which is a pretty long time) Did you know in the past, a long time ago, mail was delivered several times a day!?! Of course it took a lot longer to sort mail sometimes building up a backlog of thousands of packets in the larger cities.

How to celebrate – Try and catch you mail carrier today and thank them. read a book about the US Postal System. Write a letter to someone today.

October 9th World Post Day

October 9th World Post Day

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Today was created by the Universal Postal Congress in 1969 to commemorate the anniversary of the UPU, the Universal Postal Union, formed in 1874. The Postal service is obviously important to everyone of us all over the world.

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With the invention of email and texting the Postal services have had a reduced role in our lives. Still, we wait daily for the post person to visit us, bring us news, checks and junk mail.

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How to celebrate – Write someone a letter and send it via your regular postal service. Buy some stamps. Start a stamp collection.

September 7th Neither Rain Nor Snow Day

Today we celebrate those men and women who deliver our mail. They work hard and deserve some recognition for all they do. I remember the last hurricane we had, we had no electric, little water and no phone service but the mail was still delivered!

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The motto; :”Neither snow, nor rain, nor heat, nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds”, is often attributed to the Pony Express.  It was not they that came up with it. It was not Benjamin Franklin who helped create the modern day postal service, and it was not the New York Post Office building opened in 1914 (On September 7th) with the motto inscribed on it’s foundation.

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It actually came from the Herodotus Histories about the couriers serving in 500 B.C. Persia. But the idea is basically the same. It seems that the postal service was very instrumental in the formation of the United States. The American postal service was one of the first functions the states put in the hands of the Federal Government, even before the Federal Government existed!

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The service was required to unite the differing states against England who had just enacted the Stamp Act. It’s actually all pretty interesting… and apparently very political since 1830. But I’ll let you catch up on that on your own.

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How to celebrate – Read about the postal service. Thank your mail person for all they do. Buy some stamps!

April 3rd Pony Express Opened for Business

On April 3rd, 1860, the Pony Express opened for business delivering mail from St. Joseph, Missouri to Sacramento, California.  William H. Russell, William Bradford Waddell and Alexander Majors added a governmental contract to their freight and Drayage business to deliver mail in 10 days or less, 1,800 miles in all.  Their route would take them through Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, Wyoming, Colorado, Utah and Nevada ending up at California before starting the return trip.

The company started with 120 riders, 184 stations and 400 horses.  Each rider would make a run of 75-100 miles, each horse 10 to 15 miles.  Riders were paid $25.00 a week, the horses got all the food and water they could eat and drink.  The biggest celebrity to work for the Pony Express was “Buffalo Bill” Cody.

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The fastest trip on record was the deliver of President Lincoln’s inaugural address which made the trip in 8 days.  $5.00 a half-ounce was charged for mail delivered.  Each rider carried 20 pounds of mail, a water sack, a Bible, a horn to tell of the riders approach and a revolver.

Each rider was forced to sign an oath for their pay, $25.00 a week was pretty good pay back then considering the average pay was between 43 cents and $1.00 a day in 1860.  Here is the oath, “I (name) do hereby swear, before the Great and Living God, that during my engagement, and while I am an employee of Russell, Majors and Waddell, I will, under no circumstances, use profane language, that I will drink no intoxicating liquors, that I will not quarrel or fight with any other employee of the firm, and that in every respect I will conduct myself honestly, be faithful to my duties, and so direct all my acts as to win the confidence of my employers, so help me God.”

We have to wonder how many of these rules were forgotten when a rider was on the plains, in the rain and being chased by Indians. They didn’t have long to deal with their oath though as the Pony Express went out of business in October of 1861 when the 1st transcontinental telegraph went into use.