The May 19, 1932 issue of the Bossier Banner addressed some proposed changes that would affect all mail delivery in Benton and the entire parish.

“Mail service here in Benton, and throughout Bossier Parish, though not half as good as many firms and individuals now desire, may be a great deal worse after July 1st, according to reports from the nation’s capital.  Plans now being worked out will drastically curtail postal services in rural districts and smaller towns, it has been learned.”

“The proposed changes call for the dismissal of between 30,000 and 40,000 postal employees, reduction of deliveries in cities from four to two times a day in business districts and from two to one time day in the residential sections.  No delivery service will be maintained in smaller towns and many rural mail routes will be consolidated.  Others will offer but three deliveries a week, as compared to six-day delivery service at present.”

“With the poor train service presently being maintained through Benton and other towns of the parish, and with the proposed postal service changes, it is believed by many that mail service would be most unsatisfactory, especially in view of the fact that letter postage would be hiked from two to three cents and that steamship and airway companies, now receiving huge sums for transporting the mails, would continue to get their money, with the users of the service paying the bills and getting absolutely unsatisfactory service.”

“Louisiana will be one of the chief sufferers among the states of the Union if this plan is put into effect, it is believed.  Users of the mails in this parish would receive their mail from twelve to twenty-four hours later than they do at present, and, in many cases, where they live on rural routes, their letters and other mail would be even three days later than at present.”

“No official announcement of these contemplated changes has as yet been made locally, as only the Postmaster-General and the Senate Post Office Committee have gone into the matter or had anything to say about it in print.”

The June 16, 1932 issue of the Banner confirmed that the rate of postage would indeed go up to three cents on first class mail.

“In addition to the increased letter-mail postage rate, publishers of newspapers and magazines must pay an increased rate beginning July 1st.  Also, there is to follow a raise in the air mail postage rate and that of return post cards.”

Seven 1932 stamps are included in a very large stamp collection (1898-1973) that is archived at the Bossier Parish Library Historical Center.  Pay us a visit and check it out.

Ann Middleton is Director of the Bossier Parish Library Historical Center. She can be reached at (318) 746-7717 or amiddlet@state.lib.la.us.

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