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Pie Town P.O.: 1940

June 1940. "The stage which daily brings in mail, freight, express and passengers to Pie Town, New Mexico." Medium format acetate negative by Russell Lee. View full size.

June 1940. "The stage which daily brings in mail, freight, express and passengers to Pie Town, New Mexico." Medium format acetate negative by Russell Lee. View full size.


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The Miracle of the Precariously-Piled Portmanteaux

I can think of no other reason besides divine interdiction to explain how this Physics 101 nightmare-on-wheels made the 75+ miles from Springerville (or Socorro) to Pie Town, lurching and bouncing and wheezing over winding trails of washboard and ruts, without that precarious pile of portmanteaux bouncing off and scattering to the winds, somewhere outside of Quemado (or Magdalena).

A close look shows a mere wisp of cord (and substantial prayer to the Gravity God) holding the top valise in place. If my father ever saw this load, once he recovered from the resulting angina attack, he would mutter "No! No! No!" and send me to fetch another 100+ft of rope.

Mr. Lee, however, provides proof that the load survived at least half of its journey, and for that demonstration of divine providence and travelling mercies, can I get an AMEN?!

I will submit an application to the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, making the case that Santa Fe Trailways truly deserves the name "SANTA" Fe Trailways.

[Still, I wonder how many of those chicks arrived scrambled. - Dave]

Out in the weather

They certainly seem to count on rain being infrequent in that part of the country.

Both Sides Marked

SANTA FE TR___ Truck Lines? Trucking Co.?

[Trailways. - Dave]

Like many chicks I have known

They come with a lot of baggage.

ICC Lights and Reflectors

Lots going on in the photo. Interesting to see a automobile fitted with Interstate Commence Commission lighting in addition to being rigged out like a stagecoach. Wonder how long these cars lasted in this type of road service.

Royal Family

"Well let him out!"

Prince Albert in a can ...

... Clabber Girl in a box.

The Real McCoy!

I see Amos McCoy (Walter Brennan) is in town to pick up his load of chicks for the farm.

'38 Chrysler Royal

Looks like a 1938 Chrysler Royal sedan from what we can see of it. A very cool pic for sure. I will buy a print of this one.

[The car is a 1937 Plymouth. - Dave]

Well Carl,

I still think we should have bought the truck.

The Red, White & Blue of Barnsdall

The globes, decked out in all their color!

Straps Galore

Those are some beautiful suitcases strapped on there next to the baby chicks... I would love to own just one! Someone is traveling in style!

Smoke 'Em If You Got 'Em

It's a gas station. What could go wrong?


Looks like someone is getting a bunch of chicks to raise in those boxes on the left. We used to get those in my long-ago boyhood and raise them in the “brooder”. The brooder was a feeder that had a light to keep the little ones warm until they got some feathers. First thing you knew, there were eggs to eat and nice fryers to have for Sunday dinner.

Pie Town Mail Drama

Two years ago the USPS said they were closing the town's PO building due to it being unsafe and beyond repair. The residents kicked up enough of a fuss, with some high-powered help, that the plan to relocate services to another town 20-ish miles away were scrapped. Pie Town is still on the (postal) map.

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