[Life, April 2, 1956. Illustration by William A. Smith. Click for a larger view.]
The text, if you’d rather not squint:
He is everybody’s trusted friend . . .Reader, do you know your mail carrier’s full name?
Most of the time you see him coming up the walk in a blue-gray suit with a leather bag slung over his shoulder. But you may remember him also in army fatigues or navy blues, when his familiar cry of “Mail!” was the most welcome sound in all the world. And there was a time when he wore a buckskin jerkin and rode fast ponies over dangerous trails few others dared to travel.
You call him the Postman or Mailman . . . and every day he is waited for and watched for by millions of people whose hearts beat faster when they see him coming.
He is the link that unites scattered families, the bearer of precious letters from absent sons and daughters. He is a bringer of hopes and joys and Yuletide spirit. He is the eternal consolation of separated lovers.
Once the bearer of dispatches was the exclusive emissary of kings and princes and powerful lords. In America he is everybody’s ambassador . . . and everybody’s trusted friend.
He stands for something pretty big. A kind of integrity so sure and unquestioned that you take it for granted as one of the verities of life. He comes like day and night — in rain or sleet or snow — when the pavements are cold enough to numb his feet or hot enough to fry an egg. Today there are 130,000 Postmen serving our needs, and to every one of them your sealed letters are “top secret.”
Without the Postman all of us would live in a lonelier world.
All mail posts (Pinboard)
[We know our carrier’s name: how else could we write a check for him at Christmas?]