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Mr. Route 16

Mr. Route 16 image
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Donated by the Ann Arbor News. © The Ann Arbor News.
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One of the most familiar faces to merchants in the busy State St. business area is that of Edwin (“Eddie”) Baur, who has devoted his last 26 ½ years to delivering mail there.

Baur, whose home is at 308 Thompson St., knows the State St. area like you know the face of your watch.

Since Sept. 5, 1924, Baur has carried Route 16—embracing the 500 and 600 blocks of E. Liberty St., the 300 block of S. State St., the 700 block of N. University Ave., and the Nickels Arcade.

He makes two trips per day. In the morning, it takes him from about 8:30 to 10:30 and in the afternoon, from about 1 to 2:30. His average daily delivery is about 2,500 letters and some 500 parcels, including newspapers and magazines.

Walks Five Miles

To do it, Baur walks roughly five miles a day.

He remembers when the State and Liberty St. sidewalks were three or four feet wider than they are now. Back in 1927, the new popularity of the automobile forced a street-widening program for parking space.

A good many changes have come about in Baur’s 26 ½ years. He remembers particularly that there were “a lot more restaurants and beauty parlors” in the State St. area back in the 1920’s than there are now. Both the Michigan and State theaters have been built during that time, and the old Majestic, dark for years, was finally torn down to make way for a municipal parking lot.

Baur, now 51, has nine more years—presumably on the State St. run—before his retirement.

PHOTO CAPTION: MR. ROUTE 16: Eddie Baur, mailman who has practically grown up with the State St. business area, sorts through a small portion of the 2,500 letters he delivers daily. Baur has carried Rout 16—the main State St. area—since 1924.