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382 MAIL BY RAIL

and for many years, mails were sorted to railway divisions (much as in
America). The present county-division sorting was introduced by C. W.
Ward, author of British T.P.O.s. Paid overtime (aggregation) for clerks
began in 1897, and other benefits soon afterward. Earlier R.P.O. desig-
nations, such as "Sorting Tender" and "Railway Sorting Carriage"
gradually disappeared, with only the present "T.P.O." and "S.C." re-
maining. All T.P.O.s were suspended for World War II by September
21, 1940, but most were restored beginning in 1945. Considerable cele-
bration marked some resumptions; a gay "Pig's Head Supper," with
outstanding guest talent, was put on by T.P.O. men soon after.

[In addition to the fatal wrecks reported in Chap. 14, the old Tam-
worth-Lincoln S.C. (LMS) landed in a field years ago, killing one clerk.]

Note 19— Writers of the P.T.S. (In addition to those in Chapter 16.)
LaVern R. ZARR of the Chicago &: Council Bluffs (CB&Q) has sold
articles on the P.T.S. and other subjects to newspapers. Captain James
E. WHITE (later General Superintendent R.M.S.) also wrote Service
articles for periodicals in addition to his book, A Lifespan and Remi-
niscences, we've mentioned. Bruce L. BIRMINGHAM, retired (Illinois
Branch 10th Division, N.P.T.A.), writer of the Chicago Tribune's
"Wake of the News" column, also wrote a poetry book. Beckoning
Trails. Samuel M. GAINES, late 11th Division superintendent with a
fifty-year service record, wrote published poetry of considerable charm
("I have lived, I have loved, I have laughed— Life's glorious wine I have
quaffed . . .") and was an art collector and air-mail expert. Dr. Envin
A. SHAFFER (ex-Buffalo & Washington, PRR) is the author of three
non-P.T.S. books {Major Washington, Cavalier Prince, The Pennsyl-
vanian) and has degrees from six colleges. Honorable William D.
STEWART (ex-Ninevah & Wilkes-Barre, D&H-New York to Penn-
sylvania), later a New York State legislator, v^rote the book Kanisteo
Valley as well as magazine articles. Tudor F. BROWN, Pittsburgh & St.
Louis (PRR), wrote a poetry book {Beyond the Blue) and other pub-
pushed verse— and the poetry of Hugh GORDON (ex-St. Louis &
Monett, StL-SF) has appeared in books also. J. P. CONNOLLY of the
New York & Washington (PRR) and Third Avenue R.P.O. (TARy) sold
two articles to Railroad Magazine. Fred S. WIGHTMAN, retired
R.M.A. leader of the Williston & Seattle (GN), wrote a noteworthy
article for the same journal— "10 Days on a Train in the Cascades"— and
is secretary of the Seattle Retired Clerks Club.

Earl L. NEWTON, Nixie Box author, wrote other equally excellent
verse and is in retirement at Kalamazoo, Michigan. James L. STICE, the
Free Enterprise writer, has been mentioned frequently herein; he was
an early case-exam medal winner, checked nearly seventy-five hundred
errors on other clerks (only 282 were checked on him), and became a
division superintendent and an inspector. Hubert C. WELSH of the
Salisbury & Knoxville (Sou) writes verse of much merit, including one



TECHNICAL NOTES 383

much-reprinted poem about the heavy mails to Montreal and Ridge-
crest, North Carolina, on his line in summer. Harold KIMBALL, an-
other Railroad Magazine contributor, runs on the St. Albans 8: Boston

(see Chaper II), and E. Ray LOVE of Tiflin, Ohio, writes P.T.S. short
stories, as did Votaw. Leander POOLE of the Chattanooga & Meridian

(AGS, Tenn.-Miss.), a friend of Jack London, wrote for national
magazines under the name of Bill Sykes. John E. THWAITS (once
shipwrecked, on Alaska's old Sewarcl & LInalaska) wrote for various
magazines. H. H. HAIN, retired from the New York & Pittsburgh

(PRR), wrote the first history of Perry County, Pennsylvania (1,088
pages). Stan GOULD, another ex-clerk, wrote the book An American
System of Self Defense (Eastern Press, Chicago). J. P. CLELAND of
Omaha, Nebraska, a clerk for forty years, was a lecturer and world
traveled as well as a writer. Frank GOLDM.AN of the Philadelphia
Terminal, P.T.S. , wrote a prize-winning article for Scribner's Commen-
tator (1942). LeRoy O. CLARK of the 14th Division office at Omaha
writes short-short stories. Scores of other clerks write articles often for
the Postal Transport Journal and doubtless for other journals also; M.
A. PRIESTLY of the Wash, k Cin. (C&:0) won a prize with an H.P.O.
article in the Huntington (W.Va.) Herald-Advertiser, and Assistant
Postmaster General REDDING (over-all head of the P.T.S.) is a leading
journalist and author.

Note 20.— Collection & Distribution Wagons. These early horse-
drawn "H.P.O.s" were painted white with gold striping, like the
trolley R.P.O.s, and contained a postmarking ial)le as well as the cases
and pouch rack. They advanced mails to trains by as much as twenty-
four hours in both New York and Washington (daily trips in each city
were sixteen and nine respectively). The Washington wagon had a
door in the rear and carried two pos'men to gather in the letter-box
mail; clerks postmarked the mail and distributed it to states, city directs,
and local R.P.O.s; but by evening there was too much mail even to
postmark. Postmarks were of the large single-circle type, with two
lines of print in the upper arc, and read "COLLECT'N R: DIST'N/
WASH'N D.C./WAGON No. 1," the latter figure being repeated in a
lens-sect bar killer. The New York route operated past the West Side
stations from Fourteeenth Street to Thirty-fourth Street and beyond,
and had a hectic special run one day; reporter Dorothy Dare of the
World had been sworn in as an auxiliary clerk when that paper decided
to "cover" this trip and was soon proudly postmarking letters so fast
that only blurs resulted. A regular clerk had to stop her, and she took
her revenge in an article in the World next day! The service there lasted
only ten months— it was discontinued August 2, 1897, when the new
pneumatic-tube service replaced it, with the wagon transferred to
Buffalo, where it made only seven trips a day. On June 30, 1899, both
wagons were transferred to St. Louis, where they ended their days.



584 MAIL BY RAIL

Note 2].— The "Go-Back Pouch" and Other Regiovnl Publications.
Monroe Williams, late editor of the Go-Back Pouch during its retenily
terminated but colorful career, outlined its purpose in that popular
publication's "First Dispatcli":

The "Go-Back Pouch," like charity, covers a multitude of
sins. We all know that what goes into this convenient separa-
tion is off the record and not meant to be recalled until it has
had time to be forgotten. Likewise, we know that in the
memories of the old-timers ... in the files of their own personal
go-backs, there is a wealth of information on the early history
and traditions of our Service ... It is hoped that we may
provide here ... a place where these recollections may be
recorded, that the flavor and essence of the early days . . . may
not be forever lost.

N.P.T.A. di\ ision and branch publications still being published include
the 8/// Division Neios Letter (parent medium of the Go-Back Pouch),
Official News Bulletin (3rd Division), 12//^ Division News, Up to the
Second (2nd Division), The First ]Vord (1st Division), and Division
NeuKS Letter (lOih Di\ision); and the following publications of branches
indicated: Texarkana RePerCussions, Postal Transit (Kansas City), Tall
Corn Bulletin (Des Moines, Iowa), Little Rocket (Little Rock,
Arkansas), Long Island Sound (Long Island Branch, Jamaica, New
York), Pick-Up (St. Louis). Booster (Florida Branch), Nixie News (Cin-
cinnati), Ptiilty Sentinel (Philadelphia), two called The Standpoint (Los
Angeles and Forth Worth); and the following, all entitled Branch Nexus
preceded by name of branch indicated: Alabama, Georgia, Buffalo,
South Carolina, and Illinois.

Note 22.-Addenda. In Chapter 10 (p. 171) our shortest R.P.O., the
Carb. &: Scrant., should have been noted as having been formerly the
much longer Ninevah fc Wilkes-Barre (D&:H) starting from New York
State (see Note 19, W D. Stewart); and on p. 190, after Nowling's exam
record, add that of S. M. Atkinson of the Cin. &: Nashville (L&N)-a//
lOO's thus far, after 3 years' service. In Chap. 13 on p. 259, British readers
should make note that membership in the T.P.O. fc Seapost Society is
5y_ to accepted applicants (inquiries to N. Hill, Netherleigh, Old
Wortley Rd., Rotheiham, Yorks.); U. S. readers, note that The R.P.O.-
H.P.O. Magazine is to be published monthly at $1 annually by M.
Jarosak, 62 New York Ave., Brooklyn 16. In Chap. 16 (p. 360). it should
be noted that the substitution of closed-pouch service for local R.P.O.s
in New Jersey and elsewhere is partiridarly to be deplored in view of
the fact that not even local mails can then be exchanged by way-pouch
in star route fashion— mails must sometimes cross the state to a terminal
for sorting, just to be delivered in the next town.



i



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