Postal Child

POSTED: November 13, 2020

I saw this in Mental Floss:

The United States Postal Service has a proud tradition of transporting letters and packages in a timely and efficient manner. Parcels were a later addition; the USPS was granted the ability to deliver items greater than 4 pounds as of January 1, 1913.

Like any new service, there were attempts to game the system. In this case, it involved parents attempting to mail their children.

According to the Smithsonian, it was not unheard of for enterprising—and some might say grossly incompetent—parents to exploit the new Parcel Post service for the transport of tykes. One such example occurred in Ohio, when Jesse and Mathilda Beagle mailed their son, 8-month-old James, to his grandmother a few miles away, paying just 15 cents for the service. (Had the postal carrier lost him, there was recourse: the Beagles insured James for $50.)

That’s all.