Dangers, Disasters and Good Deeds

Packaged Threats

Danger in Disguise

On May 1, 1919, a New York City mail clerk became a postal legend. With one heroic deed, Charles Caplan saved many of America’s most prominent leaders from certain danger and possible death.

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Sorting clerks at work in large city post office.

In the early evening of that fateful day, Caplan had purchased a newspaper for the train ride home. While reading about a mail bomb that had injured a maid at the residence of Georgia Senator Thomas R. Hardwick, it struck him that he had seen similar packages at the post office where he worked.

Without delay, Caplan rushed back to his station and commenced a frantic search for parcels resembling the Hardwick bomb. When the dangerous mission was finished, thirty-six mail bombs had been recovered and thirty-six tragedies averted.

Three mail carriers holding many parcels and newspapers.
Sorting clerks at work in large city post office.