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National Postal Museum in DC full of interesting exhibits

The National Postal Museum, located opposite Union Station in Washington, D.C., is a joint venture between the US Postal Service and the Smithsonian Institution and opened in 1993; it had just reopened when I visited after being closed due to Covid

The National Postal Museum, located opposite Union Station in Washington, D.C., is a joint venture between the US Postal Service and the Smithsonian Institution and opened in 1993; it had just reopened when I visited after being closed due to Covid

The Penny Black was the world's first adhesive postage stamp used in a public postal system; first issued in the UK, on May 1, 1840, the stamp features a profile of Queen Victoria

The Penny Black was the world's first adhesive postage stamp used in a public postal system; first issued in the UK, on May 1, 1840, the stamp features a profile of Queen Victoria

This letter was sent from the RMS Titanic (RMS stands for Royal Mail Steamer) shortly before it left Southampton, UK on its maiden voyage to New York City; as with all Smithsonian Museum locations, admission was free

This letter was sent from the RMS Titanic (RMS stands for Royal Mail Steamer) shortly before it left Southampton, UK on its maiden voyage to New York City; as with all Smithsonian Museum locations, admission was free

Famous stamp collectors have included Supreme Court Justice William Rehnquist, John Lennon, Queen Elizabeth II, Pope Francis, Ansel Adams and James Michener; my mom and I were both avid stamp collectors in our younger days

Famous stamp collectors have included Supreme Court Justice William Rehnquist, John Lennon, Queen Elizabeth II, Pope Francis, Ansel Adams and James Michener; my mom and I were both avid stamp collectors in our younger days

Jeweler Harry Winston mailed the world-famous Hope Diamond to the Smithsonian Institution in November, 1958; the postage was $2.44 but Winston did pay to insure the package for $1 million too

Jeweler Harry Winston mailed the world-famous Hope Diamond to the Smithsonian Institution in November, 1958; the postage was $2.44 but Winston did pay to insure the package for $1 million too

NC stamps; the National Postal Museum houses one of the largest and most significant philatelic and postal history collections in the world and one of the world’s most comprehensive library resources on philately and postal history

NC stamps; the National Postal Museum houses one of the largest and most significant philatelic and postal history collections in the world and one of the world’s most comprehensive library resources on philately and postal history

This is one of the 360 pieces of mail (out of 17,000) that was saved when the German passenger airship Hindenburg crashed in 1937 in NJ killing 35 of the 97 people on board; this letter reached its recipient in a glassine envelope

This is one of the 360 pieces of mail (out of 17,000) that was saved when the German passenger airship Hindenburg crashed in 1937 in NJ killing 35 of the 97 people on board; this letter reached its recipient in a glassine envelope

The USPS traces its roots to 1775 during the Second Continental Congress, when Benjamin Franklin was appointed the first postmaster general; the National Postal Museum is located in the beautiful building that housed DC's post office from 1914 until 1986

The USPS traces its roots to 1775 during the Second Continental Congress, when Benjamin Franklin was appointed the first postmaster general; the National Postal Museum is located in the beautiful building that housed DC's post office from 1914 until 1986

Looking at this envelope, sent by Pony Express, it's amazing mail ever reached its intended recipient!; before postage stamps, rates would vary wildly and fees were paid by the recipient who sometimes refused to pay

Looking at this envelope, sent by Pony Express, it's amazing mail ever reached its intended recipient!; before postage stamps, rates would vary wildly and fees were paid by the recipient who sometimes refused to pay

Fred Wiseman flew the first government sanctioned airmail in world history on this plane on February 17, 1911; the 17 mile trip between Petaluma and Santa Rosa, CA took two days to complete (he could only get 100 ft off the ground!)

Fred Wiseman flew the first government sanctioned airmail in world history on this plane on February 17, 1911; the 17 mile trip between Petaluma and Santa Rosa, CA took two days to complete (he could only get 100 ft off the ground!)

After the Continental Army's brutal winter at Valley Forge, Quartermaster General Nathanael Greene (namesake of Greensboro) sent this letter desperately seeking supplies; the museum was full of fascinating pieces such as this

After the Continental Army's brutal winter at Valley Forge, Quartermaster General Nathanael Greene (namesake of Greensboro) sent this letter desperately seeking supplies; the museum was full of fascinating pieces such as this

Half of the world’s mail volume is handled by the USPS (150  billion pieces annually); 155  million delivery points are served by roughly 500,000 employees (they also get 37 million changes of address each year)

Half of the world’s mail volume is handled by the USPS (150+ billion pieces annually); 155+ million delivery points are served by roughly 500,000 employees (they also get 37 million changes of address each year)

It is estimated that 10% of San Marino's revenue is generated by the sale of its postage stamps to international collectors; the government of San Marino has the world's only philatelic minister of state

It is estimated that 10% of San Marino's revenue is generated by the sale of its postage stamps to international collectors; the government of San Marino has the world's only philatelic minister of state

Concord-style mail coaches (this one was built in 1851) first appeared in the 1820s and remained in use into the early 1900s; today more than 90% of US mail is carried by long-haul trucks

Concord-style mail coaches (this one was built in 1851) first appeared in the 1820s and remained in use into the early 1900s; today more than 90% of US mail is carried by long-haul trucks

From June 2015 until December 2018, the museum displayed the 1856 British Guiana One-Cent Magenta, the world's most valuable stamp, which sold for nearly $10 million

From June 2015 until December 2018, the museum displayed the 1856 British Guiana One-Cent Magenta, the world's most valuable stamp, which sold for nearly $10 million

In 1931 the USPS acquired 1000 Ford Model A trucks to deliver parcel post (packages too large for letter carrier pouches); ZIP codes were introduced in 1963 followed by the ZIP 4 format which was added in 1983

In 1931 the USPS acquired 1000 Ford Model A trucks to deliver parcel post (packages too large for letter carrier pouches); ZIP codes were introduced in 1963 followed by the ZIP+4 format which was added in 1983

In 1848 Mauritius, then a British colony, issued stamps showing Queen Victoria at age 18; some of the world's most valuable stamps are ones that were mistakes such as the stamp on the right where 'pence' is misspelled

In 1848 Mauritius, then a British colony, issued stamps showing Queen Victoria at age 18; some of the world's most valuable stamps are ones that were mistakes such as the stamp on the right where 'pence' is misspelled

Named after its primary benefactor (he gave $8 million in 2009), the William H. Gross Stamp Gallery is the world’s largest gallery dedicated to philately; distributed throughout the thematic areas are hundreds of pullout frames containing 20,000  objects

Named after its primary benefactor (he gave $8 million in 2009), the William H. Gross Stamp Gallery is the world’s largest gallery dedicated to philately; distributed throughout the thematic areas are hundreds of pullout frames containing 20,000+ objects

This anthrax-laced envelope and letter were part of an interesting exhibit on postal inspectors; each year they arrest roughly 1500 people for mail fraud, investigate 200 robberies and arrest 2500 for money laundering or drug trafficking

This anthrax-laced envelope and letter were part of an interesting exhibit on postal inspectors; each year they arrest roughly 1500 people for mail fraud, investigate 200 robberies and arrest 2500 for money laundering or drug trafficking

Posted by VagabondCowboy 10:49

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