Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Postal Forwarding Directories...... An Unique Resource for YOU?

EWGS has had in its collection in the downtown Spokane Public Library a most unique collection of books. Called Postal Forwarding Directories, they would remind you of a city directory. But they were created to help postmen deliver the mail. On the printed pages, name and addresses are listed.

What makes these volumes so unique is that every few pages there are some blank pages inserted where the postman could write in the new/forwarding address of a family on his route. 

Our collection spanned about 1903 to 1940 for Spokane but EWGS figures that other cities had such too. (Doing a Google search, I could find nothing pertinent to this topic.) EWGS has wanted for years to have these unique resources to be digitized and finally that time came and the digitization is in progress under the direction of Becky Menzel. Even with the 2-year hiatus before we get a new library, Becky will have an office at Gonzaga and (I'm told) will continue working on the project. 

Now what does this mean to YOUR genealogy? Well, imagine this: you know where your family was in 1905 and again in 1930 but where were they in between? Was there a Postal Forwarding Directory in that 1905 town that would hold a clue? The only way to know is to contact the public library, genealogy society and/or historical society in that place.

I thank Jeanne Coe for information on this project; she's been on the digitizing crew. 

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