Prompt Postal Service

The Chicago Record-Herald

In one feature of the public service the British are far ahead of us, and that is their mail deliveries. From any point in London a man can write a letter in the morning and get an answer the same day, and if not too far off he can do the same in the country, depending, of course, upon the promptness of the person to whom the letter is addressed. This rule will apply anywhere within one hundred miles of the Bank of England. There are hourly collections and hourly deliveries in all parts of the city, the business as well as the residence quarters. The average number of deliveries in cities of over ten thousand inhabitants is fourteen a day.

There is a letter box at every corner. A person mailing a note at nine o'clock is sure to have it collected before ten in the morning and delivered at its destination anywhere within the limits of London before twelve, and if the reply is posted before one he will receive it within three or four hours at the farthest. This quick postal service has been a great obstacle in the way of telephones. There are probably fewer telephones in London when compared to the population than in any city of the United States. Many people do their marketing by post. My lady makes out her list between eight and nine o'clock, writes it on a postal card to her butcher, baker, or grocer, and the goods are delivered before noon.

The parcel post deliveries are quite as prompt, the rate of postage is low, and the service is extensively used by merchants for small packages. London is so large that ordinary delivery by wagons would be slow and expensive. Hence a merchant finds it cheaper and more convenient to pay the postage, and there is a basket in every shop to receive parcels intended for the mail. Boys weigh them and put on the stamps, take them to the nearest box or postal station at frequent intervals, and they are always delivered the same day, and often before the purchaser reaches home. If you go into a book store and buy a magazine or an illustrated paper it is customary to request its delivery. The clerk writes your address upon a wrapper and passes it over to a lad, who wraps it, puts on the stamp, takes it to the mail box at the next corner, and within an hour it is on its way to your house.

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Christian Science and Absent Treatment
August 29, 1901

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