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Rural Mail Delivery Is A Go

Rural Mail Delivery Is A Go image
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Many extensions are to be made duriDg the coming fiscal jear in rural free mail delivery, the experirnents in wbich have been highly satisfactory to tbejgovernment. During tne past year fmany changes üave been made, tbe result of finding vreak points iu the first experimental services, says the St. Louis Glab-Deruocrat. In the future the carrier will not attempt to go to the door of cvery farmer oit his route, as has been the case in the past. A route will be established over froin 25 to 30 miles of road. The carrier will be scheduJed ovei this on a time basis. Hs will pass witnin at least one mile of every farm house on his ronte. Those living off of the road can put up mail boxes at certain points, where they can leave mail for collection and also receive mail. At every cross roaa will be a governroent mail collection box, similar to those used in cities, where all may deposit mail with the assurance it will not lay there over 12 honrs. By this change almost twice as much territory can be successfully served at the expense which was formerly neoessary for the smaller routes. - - g, The salaries of the carriers has been raisea from $300 to $400, and special permits from the departinent enable the carriers to establish a parcel (lelivery of their own. Most of the carriers - where the topography I of the country is snch that it is pasible - use bicycles during the summer and go horseback in winter. They make one delivery and one collectiou a daj. Tneir eqnipment is practically the same as that of city letter carriers. At present tne most extensive experiments are being made in Indiana, Iowa, Misssouri, Michigan and Kansas in the central section, and Colorado and California in the west. During the ensuing year, however, special tests will be made in the Rocky Mountain aistricts. Assistant Postmasfcer General Perry win permit much improvement and extensión of tests. Bural mail delivery bas been introduced under the most favorable conditions in the garden district of California, where 75 miles of macadamized country roads lead through a succession of parks and past palaces, and are sprinkled daily like city streets. In has been put in operation along the banks of the Bayoa La Foarche, L. , where the carriers drive along on each side of the bayou. It has been inangnrated in tüe prodoetive irrigated fruit-growiug discricts of Arizona, amoug the well ïinproved and prosperous of Georgia, in the backvvoods of Maine, in the lake dittricts of Vermont and among the sums mer boarders of Alassachusetts. It habeeu carried over the nionntains oi Aikansas, through the heavy roads ot Sangainon county, lllinois, wlïich Liacolu conld hardly gut tbrough when he rode the circuits aloDg the rough banks of the Missouri in Kansas, throngb the unsnrvejed aud roadless farming districts of Kentncky, over the hill and throngh the snow-filled crosa loads of Michigan, down the stiff clay roads of North Carolina, along the sparsely rocky ridges of Westrnoreland county Pennsylvauia, and among the scattered colored settlements of Virginia. The resnlts have been higüly satisfactory. During the ensaing year we hope to battle with even greater natural obstaclesp. The department wants teuts under every condition. There is now no doubt that in a very few years this will be oae of the greatest departments of the servioe. The effect of rural deiivery is noticeable npon the people to whom givén. It Drings them into as close contact with the outsidö world as the people living in towns and cities. The morning newspapers are laid down at their doors as early as 8 o'clock on the day of pubüjation. ?,The increase in letter writing, in some iustances, flas been 1,000 within a year. Farmers Know the markets, the weather forecasts and the general news of the world every morning. The benefits and effects are so obvious that they are hardly worth enumerating. Thisadvauced condition of the farmer has its effect upon the city. Mr. Heath takes the high groaud that, onder the present ïoail servicfl, the United States is not fuifiJling her obligation in change of services witb tbose Europeau conntries - notably Eugland, France, Geriuany and Belginm - wbich deliver letters and otber mail matter to the doors of their rural, as well as city residents. It is proposed tokeep the expenses of rural mail delivery very uearly within the figures of L the present mail service. This is to tw done by abolishing star routes and small post offices. The oost of delivery and collection is very low. In fact, it is surprising. In many districts it ruus mnch Delow one cent a piece. This will be lowered as the uew changes in service siuipliy and better it. This, hoever, must come as the result of experimeüts. J