Rural Free Delivery in a Horse-Drawn Mail Delivery Wagon, 1895-1920

Summary

Officially adopted by the Post Office Department in 1896, Rural Free Delivery was a boon to residents who were previously required to personally collect their mail in the nearest town. Rural routes were long and served hundreds of customers. To facilitate their perennial labor, carriers often purchased horse-drawn wagons like this, with a cash box, foot-warmer, and small sorting desk.

Officially adopted by the Post Office Department in 1896, Rural Free Delivery was a boon to residents who were previously required to personally collect their mail in the nearest town. Rural routes were long and served hundreds of customers. To facilitate their perennial labor, carriers often purchased horse-drawn wagons like this, with a cash box, foot-warmer, and small sorting desk.

Artifact

Photographic print

Date Made

1895-1920

Subject Date

1895-1920

Creators

National Photo Company 

Place of Creation

United States, District of Columbia, Washington 

Creator Notes

Made by the National Photo Company, Washington, D.C.

 On Exhibit

By Request in the Benson Ford Research Center

Object ID

2000.32.46

Credit

From the Collections of The Henry Ford.

Material

Paper (Fiber product)

Technique

Gelatin silver process

Color

Black-and-white (Colors)

Dimensions

Height: 3.375 in

Width: 5.438 in

Inscriptions

Handwritten on ink on verso: DUTTON JUNE 9 THIS IS CHARLEY AND HIS MAN'S WAGON SIDE OF OUR BARN MOTHER

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