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Moving the Mail

photo of the museum's Atrium
The museum's Atrium

Transportation is critical to good mail service. Among the National Postal Museum's artifacts are a number of different vehicles that have carried the mail.

photo of a plane

Airmail in America

February 22, 2006 — Permanent
In the 1920s and 1930s, funds from airmail contracts breathed life into the nation's fledgling commercial aviation industry.

interior of the railway mail car

Mail by Rail

July 30, 1993 — Permanent
The Railway Mail Service revolutionized the way mail was processed by sorting mail aboard moving trains. The National Postal Museum re-created a railway mail train in its Atrium. The interior fixtures is from a de-commissioned mail car. The exterior portion of the Railway Post Office train was created by Smithsonian artisans.


Networking a Nation: The Star Route Service

February 21, 2006 — Permanent
In 1845, postal officials tried a new approach to expand the nation’s mail service—Star Routes.

Model A Ford Parcel Post truck

On the Road

December 23, 2004 — Permanent
Discover the history of the postal service's vehicular fleet, the largest in the world.