Monday, February 7, 2011

Snail Mail

[Click for a larger view.]

“Without ZIP CODE the growing U.S. Mail load would move at a snail’s pace — if it moved at all!”: an advertisement from Life, November 22, 1968.

Poor Mr. ZIP: he lived to see all mail become snail mail. The Oxford English Dictionary traces snail mail — “the physical delivery of mail, as by the postal service, considered as slow in comparison to electronic mail; a letter, etc., sent by post” — back to 1982. Mr. ZIP retired in 1986. He later died of a broken heart.

comments: 4

Richard said...

Someday children will be astonished to hear that, back in the old days, if you wanted to communicate with someone you'd write down what you had to say on a piece of paper, put that inside something called an "envelope," then put that (after licking it, so it'd stay shut) in a "mailbox," so that, if all went well, it would be delivered a few days later to that person's home, where it would be opened and read and (it would be hoped) responded to.

Elaine said...

There are a few of us hoary old letter-writers still extant. Future headline: Last Living Letter-writer Dies...

Anonymous said...

ZIP: Zone Improvement Plan

Informative article at
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ZIP_code

mari said...

As a part-time Postal service employee, let me just say that the Postal Service itself may be going the way of Mr. Zip.