Rural Free Delivery saddlebag with segregated mail pouches
Segregated Rural Free Delivery saddlebag, c. 1896

Palmyra, Virginia became a Rural Free Delivery post office on October 22, 1896, one of the first in the nation to deliver mail to farm families. This mailbag with separate compartments for “white” and “colored” mail was not required by federal policy but was procured by the carrier to satisfy either his own preferences or those of his customers.