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Step Back In Time

February 16, 2013

Step Back in Time: Feb. 16, 2013

25 years ago

Feb. 16, 1988

The Oneonta Post Office is celebrating the 100th anniversary of free mail delivery service in the city of Oneonta on April 1.

Postmaster Harlow E. Bundy responded to public pressure by successfully lobbying for the delivery service, which began in 1888 with three letter carriers, according to Michael Hubbs, a letter carrier and member of the postal Employee Involvement group.

The group plans to celebrate the event with an open house on April 1. Hubbs said on that date letter carriers will be giving hourly tours of the Oneonta Post Office between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m.

There will also be a special postmark depicting the location of the post office in 1888 at the corner of Main and Dietz streets, Hubbs said.

The free delivery service gave residents of the city a more reliable mail system. Prior to the service, people had to come to the post office to retrieve their mail and it came on a sporadic basis.

But Hubbs said there were also problems with the delivery service. The local merchants weren’t very thrilled with the new service because it meant people didn’t have to make a daily trip downtown, and so were less likely to frequent their stores.

The first letter carriers used bicycles and horse and buggy to make deliveries. Hubbs said the growth of the city at the time was evident by the increase in the number of letter carriers.

 50 years ago

Feb. 16, 1963

Atonement Lutheran Church will conduct several services of an unusual nature on this Sunday. At the 8:30 a.m. matins service, the Rev. Harold C. Fry will preach on the theme “Without Spot or Wrinkle.” The acolyte for this service will be Richard Rabeler.

The Sunday School will meet in the church auditorium at 9:45 a.m. under the direction of Kenneth Agne, who will have charge of devotions and will direct a lesson with visual aids and moving pictures presented by Albert Nigro.

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