The nation needed a postal system that could meet its surging need. To answer that challenge the Post Office Department had to integrate new machines and systems into an organization that was second only to the military in scope and numbers. It would not be easy.
On December 2, 1942, the Manhattan Project’s team of scientists produced the world’s first self-sustaining nuclear chain reaction at the University of Chicago. To commemorate this important accomplishment, the Smithsonian National Postal Museum has created this mini-exhibit highlighting different objects with connections to this event.
Postmasters displayed the daily publication “Farmers’ Bulletin” for their patrons. The bulletins were “published by co-operation of the War and Post-Office Departments” for disseminating information to rural populations. Weather details from around the nation were compiled in Washington, DC for the preceding day by 1 a.m. The bulletins were telegraphed, printed, and dispatched to postmasters before daylight every day but Sunday. This “synopsis” of national information gave communities access to weather trends that could affect their lives and livelihoods.