On Thursday, I shared some of the information that can be gleaned from our ancestors’ mail and the U.S. Post Office.
Today, we will look at some of the online resources available to help with family history research.
- Newspapers – Chronicling America and websites that have historical newspaper databases may carry Mail Waiting notices. Newspaper notices were common during the 1800s and early 1900s.
- Pony Express – National Historic Trail (through CA, CO, KS, MO, NE, NV, UT and WY)
- National Pony Express Association
- The Story of the Pony Express (1860-1861)
- Smithsonian National Postal Museum
- The Pony Express: History and Myth
- U.S., Appointments of U.S. Postmasters, 1832-1971 – Ancestry subscription required to view.
- Post Office Records – National Archives
- List of Post Offices and Postmasters in the United States, 1870
- Google Books and Internet Archive have more links to early post office records and governmental reports.
There are also a number of state, regional and county postal societies:
La Posta: The Journal of American Postal History
United States and Worldwide Postal History
Arizona Postal History Foundation
Arkansas Postal History Society
Colorado Postal History Society
Georgia Postal History Society
Hawaii – Post Office in Paradise
Illinois Postal History Society
Postal History of Iowa (article)
Massachusetts Postal Research Society
Missouri Postal History Society
New Jersey Postal History Society
Pennsylvania Postal History Society
Rhode Island Postal History Society
Jim Wheat’s Postmaster and Post Offices of Texas, 1846-1930
There are most likely other resources to be found online through a more specific locality search.
If I knew an ancestor worked for the post office in a particular area, I think I’d also check the local public library and any nearby historical societies.
Hope you find lots of mail waiting for you!