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The Post Office: 1907

The Post Office: 1907

Washington, D.C., circa 1907. "Post Office." Must be where the coughdrop-box tryouts are. Harris & Ewing Collection glass negative. View full size.


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In the past, and at least up until the mid-50's, registered letters had to be stored in the postmaster's safe. That may explain the locked chest of drawers. Either that or it's where Cornelius keeps his tobacco.

As far as the cough drop gig goes

I think the job should go to the man in the middle.


I wish this was clear enough to get a better look at the "list of winners and their states" hanging up. I wonder what they won! Cough drops, perhaps.

[It's "Members." Of Congress, probably. - Dave]

Rebellious sort

There's always that one guy that refuses NOT to stare right into the camera. Quel gauche.

Sorry, next window please

We're on break.

Two workers

Don't forget the person (lady?) in the cage, apparently sorting mail.

Also, I wonder what they had in that file cabinet that made it worth an iron bar and padlock?

Spittoon floor two?

Why is there a gutter and scuppper in the upper right hand corner? Second floor flush?

6 Loafers

It looks like all three are wearing exactly the same shoes.

Trade & Mark

When I was a kid, I actually thought the Smith Bros. names were "Trade" and "Mark" like it said by each of their portraits on the box.

Pinkie Rings

All three men seem to be wearing pinkie rings - but no wedding rings?

Great Site Dave. One of my favorites.

Cornelius muttered under his breath...

"Young people today, allowing the Postal Service to grind to a halt just to primp for a newspaperman.

"Well I'll have none to do with this foolishness -- NONE TO DO, I SAY!"

spit -- (ding)

Another working stiff

(As opposed to the two-and-a-half stiffs facing us)

There is at least one other gent working there. He's the blur behind the cage. Probably sorting, judging from the speed he's moving.

The spittoon

Although I'm sure there must be other examples here, I can't recall seeing a spittoon before. It's apparently exclusively for the one guy actually working.

Postal efficiency.

One man working at his desk, and I'll guess three supervisors.

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