The journey of the Post Office started in 1660. Charles II established it under the guise of the General Post Office (GPO). Soon, it evolved as an essential organization along with the arrangement of England. After just one year, the postage date stamp and the maiden Postmaster was introduced.
Henry Bishop was the inventor of the first postmark that was used on mail for many years. He was appointed tasked to control the GPO. Gradually, the GPO evolved across the British Empire then.
The Invention of the First GPO Headquarter
The next landmark in the timeline of the GPO was discovering the uniformed postmen. It happened over 100 years later, in 1793. Then a fully operational mail facility was built in 1829 at St Martin’s Grand, EC2. Sir Robert Smirke designed this facility, which was 400ft long by 80ft in width.
The First Postage Stamp
After founding the GPO headquarter, Sir Rowland Hill invented the adhesive postage stamp. It was an important milestone for the Post Office. To sending letters globally, the Penny Black was launched after the Postage stamp. The Penny Black still an iconic stamp that reminds us of the Post Office pillar box.
It resulted from the uniform penny post to cut administrative costs. Another goal was to increase the availability of the postal system. Users could generally pay the fee, and they had the right to refuse to accept any item. The stamp charges were depending on the distance the item had been carried and the number of sheets. In that case, the post office had to keep a different account for each thing. As a result, the rates were high in the British empire.
First Post Office Regulations
In the meantime, GPO was performing very well for building communication. But less than 20 years later, the first military links to the Post Office. It was formed as the 49th Middlesex Rifle Volunteers Corps. Whatever the regulation is, the post office had a significant role in the first world war.
Postal code is what we call postcode or ZIP code in the modern system. It is a series of letters or digits. It can include spaces or punctuation for a postal address to sort out mails.
For the first time in 1974, postcodes were introduced. As a result, postal distribution efficiency was increased significantly. It was the point when the previous regulations of the Post Office disappeared in 1981. And the British formed the Telecommunications Corporation.
As a member, 117 of the 190 countries of the Universal Postal Union (UPU) had postal code systems within February 2005.
Development of the Airmail
Balloons were used to carry souvenir mails before the development of airmail. After inventing Airships, the problem reduced. But they did not establish themselves as a regular mail transporter. Airmail truly came into its own after only the development of the aeroplane. The reliability of aeroplanes had considerably improved then. On the long-distance continental routes, airmail has proven its capability.
In 1920, the first American transcontinental airmail flight took off. However, the regular service did not begin until 1924.
The growing accessibility of air flight did not affect postal organizations like the railways. Its operational reliability has been broken in different ways since the 1920s.
The most practical and cheap form of airmail remains the compact aerogramme.
It was introduced in Britain during World War II for writing to overseas military personnel. It is made of a sheet of lightweight paper.
According to the UPU, the aerogramme is available in most countries.
History of The United States Post Office
William Goddard was the first who suggested the idea of an organized U.S. postal service in 1774. The vision was to pass the latest news between colonial British postal. He formally proposed a postal service to Congress two years before the Declaration of Independence.
At first, congress did not care about the proposal. But after the battles of Lexington and Concord in the spring of 1775, they became serious. Later, on July 26, 1775, the United States Postal Service first started mailing. Benjamin Franklin was the nation’s first Postmaster General then. Franklin dedicated his life to fulfilling George Washington’s vision.
Technology and Change in Postal Services
The advantage of postal services was improved roads, railways, and aeroplanes before. But now technology can be a great benefit for this sector. Quickly advancing computer and data transmission technologies are being felt far more nowadays. Today’s technologies providing alternatives for electronic messaging networks. Electronic data-processing techniques can improve the administrative efficiency of the postal system.
In this internet era, people do not use a postal service without formalities. Short message service, e-mail, social media vanished the culture of writing letters. Now, we can send any message to anyone in any corner of the world within seconds. But the importance of the post office still demonstrating among us. Without a postcode, we cannot fill up an e-commerce form to buy or take advantage of internet banking. Technology and changes in the post office are ways to ensure that we can check rapid changes in the postal sector. And that is being driven by digitalization. Learn about more form wikipedia.
Rome was the first who had a well-documented postal service. At the time of Augustus Caesar, the service was called Cursus Publicus and was provided with light carriages.
India has the largest postal network. It has more than 1.5 lakh post offices across the country.