Uniformed Letter Carrier with Child in Mailbag

Newer Older

Description: This city letter carrier posed for a humorous photograph with a young boy in his mailbag. After parcel post service was introduced in 1913, at least two children were sent by the service. With stamps attached to their clothing, the children rode with railway and city carriers to their destination. The Postmaster General quickly issued a regulation forbidding the sending of children in the mail after hearing of those examples.

Creator/Photographer: Unidentified photographer

Medium: Black and white photographic print

Culture: American

Geography: USA

Date: 1900

Collection: U.S. Postal Employees

Persistent URL: arago.si.edu/index.asp?con=2&cmd=1&id=194274

Repository: National Postal Museum

Accession number: A.2006-22

aplari, artelisa, 77krc, missnae, and 1729 other people added this photo to their favorites.

View 20 more comments

  1. 康师傅2010 53 months ago | reply

    You are learning kangaroos

  2. Giovanni Rueda 51 months ago | reply


  3. milind.nalawade 50 months ago | reply

    It great photo, so gogoglygo babeeeeeeee....

  4. aattura 48 months ago | reply

    Hmm... WHY is all my mail-- YELLOW?????

  5. oddsandwich 38 months ago | reply

    Hello! This image has been featured (with appropriate credit) on The Odd Sandwich:


    Thanks for all you do, Smithsonian!

  6. Smithsonian Institution 38 months ago | reply

    Thank you for your interest in Smithsonian photography, oddsandwich!


    Smithsonian Institution Archives

  7. click a pic. 37 months ago | reply

    to join - Click
    to post images to

  8. ~~AragornPrime~~ 14 months ago | reply

    "With the advent of Parcel Post in 1913, after some adults sent their children in the mails— with postage affixed to clothing— the U.S. Postmaster General issued regulations barring such shipment. The theory was that children were under the 50 lb. weight limit, and that it was a lot cheaper to mail them than to pay rail fares. In part, the regulation followed a letter inquiring as to whether parcel post would be appropriate, and the Postmaster General was of the opinion that children were not within the definition of "bees and bugs" which were the only fauna permitted to be mailed.[13] Nevertheless, several children were actually mailed. On 13 June 1920, sending children by Parcel Post was officially forbidden. Thereafter, a mail bag stuffed with a child was prominently featured in a humorous photograph to illustrate the prohibition."

  9. thelawinlife 13 months ago | reply

    Thank you for sharing this great image! I have used it on my blog, The Law in Life, in a post about the Postmaster General's 1920 regulation forbidding the sending of children via Parcel Post. If you discover any copyright restrictions or would like the image removed, please don't hesitate to e-mail me at thelawinlife@gmail.com.

  10. KaufmanTrailers [deleted] 12 months ago | reply

    So that's where babies come from.

  11. farissshafee II 7 months ago | reply

    that must've been an extraordinary beginning

  12. chicore2011 3 weeks ago | reply

    Lovely 'news'!

keyboard shortcuts: previous photo next photo L view in light box F favorite < scroll film strip left > scroll film strip right ? show all shortcuts