Rural Free Delivery 1901

RFD Historical Resources

(Photo above:  Postal Wagon D, Jan. 1901, showing one of the old barns on the hill, demolished in the 1950s. Photo taken by Louis Shriver at Union Mills.)

RFD Links

Historical society offers a special delivery in talk about Carroll’s ‘post office on wheels’ — Bob Allen, The Baltimore Sun, June 9, 2012.

Rural Free Delivery – Behind the Badge — Smithsonian National Postal Museum.

Rural Free Delivery ‘Tunnel’ Mailbox — Smithsonian National Postal Museum.

Rural Free Delivery Sled — Smithsonian National Postal Museum.

Soap Boxes Won’t Do — James H. Bruns, Smithsonian National Postal Museum, Volume 5, Issue 3,  July-September 1996.

Free Rural Mail Delivery Began in State — George Hohmann, Daily Mail Business editor, Charleston (WV) Daily Mail,  June 18, 1999.

RFD Postmarks

Here are four letters carried on RFD Wagons A, B, C, and D respectively.  Each image shows the front and back of the envelope. Note that the letters were postmarked each time they were handled by a post office, with location, date, and often time — you could track your mail’s progress.  Some letters had same-day delivery!

Obituary for Edwin F. Shriver

(From the files of Frederic Shriver Klein, source and date unknown.)

Services were held March 14 for Edwin Frysinger Shriver, 76, a former Westminster resident and R. F. D. historian who died March 12, at the Dixie Hospital, Hampton, Virginia, following a long illness.

The son of Edwin W. Shriver, originator of rural free delivery in Carroll county, Shriver contributed his father’s 1898-1904 log book of R.F.D. information to the Carroll County Historical Society in 1959.

This book “the most highly prized” R. F. D. historical item according to the Society, helped Carroll county to have what experts called then “the most outstanding collection of R. F. D. material, in the United States. The recently deceased Shriver and his wife, Marian Neilly Shriver, have been residing with a son, Edwin L. Shriver at 13 Laydon Way, Poquoson, Virginia. He was born in New York City son of the late Edwin W. and to Jospehine Vacheron Shriver and he came to Westminster at an early age.

He was a retired employee of the Pennsylvania Railroad, Baltimore, where he had been employed for 40 years. Surviving besides his wife and son are two grandchildren. Funeral services were held Saturday, March 14, at the Myers funeral home, Westminster. The Rev. Pinckney M. Corsa, pastor of the Ascension Church, Westminster, officiated and burial was in the Westminster Cemetery.

Paul A. Welch

Carroll County Historical Society Donations

In 1958, Frederic S. Klein donated RFD materials to the Carroll County Historical Society.

RFD 1958 gift

Excerpt from thank-you letter from Lillian Shipley, Sept. 13, 1958:

Historical Society of Carroll County, Maryland, Inc.
Westminster, Maryland

Sept. 13, 1958

Dear Professor Klein.

The C and D postal covers you gave me last Thursday fulfill a dream of many years and complete our display of postal markings. I’m enclosing A and B to add to your collection. Many thanks.

I know everybody enjoyed your party. You have an unusual homestead and Carroll County is proud of it. It was thoughtful of you to include the Historical Society in your festivities. . . .

My thanks and best wishes,
(Signed) Lillian Shipley