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Travel commission for a Railway Mail Service clerk

Paper keeps the wheels of the postal bureaucracy turning. This paperwork organizes the system, ensuring coordination and communication. Information flows back and forth between the central bureau and offices in every corner of the United States. From issuing the latest regulation to documenting an employee’s retirement, every step is announced, executed, and reported.

In addition to internal exchanges, the postal service interacts with the government, contractors, and consumers. The local post office has functioned as the avenue through which the federal government reached its constituency through the mail, tax forms, wanted posters, and more.

Lynn Heidelbaugh, National Postal Museum


Broadside issued by Franklin and Hunter

Every business and government bureaucracy creates vast amounts of information about and documentation of...

Post route map by Abraham Bradley

Moving mail from one location to another is the primary function of any...

ZIP code poster featuring Dick Tracy

Some forms of communication and advertising seem perfectly suited to their...

Telegram to A. F. Cryder, September 1918

In 1918 the Post Office Department turned to the telegraph to monitor the progress of its newest endeavor, the...