100-year-old delivery

A century-old postcard arrived Oct. 7 at the Chanute post office, where clerks wanted to find a home for it. The card is now on its way to Derby, to the granddaughter of the Chanute resident whose sister sent it.

Forwarded to relative found in Derby 


Even after a century, Chanute post office employees were able to track down the proper recipient for delivery.

Post office clerks used social media to locate the youngest granddaughter of a Chanute woman who was supposed to receive a postcard from her sister almost 100 years ago.

The card, dated Dec. 1, 1920, arrived at the Chanute office Oct. 7 from Albuquerque, NM, and went out Thursday to Derby. The postcard came inside a windowed envelope, so employees could see the postage, address and message meant for Martha, the wife of Sam Williamson.

The card shows Chanute written under the name and above the address 301 N. Garfield, which may have been added later. An additional stamp was added before the postcard was sealed in the envelope, which clerks were not allowed to open to see the other side.

But 301 is not a valid number on either north or south Garfield, since houses on those corner lots use east-west addresses.

So post office worker Connie Coover went to the We Are Chanute page on Facebook. 

There someone found a 1920 census that listed Sam and Martha at 301 N. Lafayette. Further investigation tracked down Sandy Stroup Hart of Derby.

“I’m so happy we were able to find it a home,” Coover said, adding that she contacted the city to find out how far back records went, but had no luck and hated to not try every possibility.

“I’ve been with the post office for almost 34 years so I still believe in the ‘service’ part of our name,” she said.



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