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Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 5,153
Registered: ‎06-06-2011

Were You Around When Zip Codes "Became"?

If memory serves me it was in the '60's. Anyway, I remember the hype about how it will help the mail move faster, etc. Today we received a piece of mail kindly forwarded to us by the erroneous recipient. It had the wrong name, the wrong state, and the wrong zip code. Same PO Box number and same town "name". This isn't the first time we have received mail from someone with the same town name, but nothing else matches. So ~~ herein lies my question. Is mail really sorted by zip code?

Women and cats will do as they please, and men and dogs should relax and get used to the idea-Robert A. Heinlein
Respected Contributor
Posts: 2,213
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: Were You Around When Zip Codes "Became"?

I worked for the Post Office for many years.

 

Yes, mail is sorted by zip codes. (The fact that human beings are involved makes it an imperfect operation.)

Trusted Contributor
Posts: 1,560
Registered: ‎12-31-2013

Re: Were You Around When Zip Codes "Became"?

There are millions and millions of pieces of mail being moved each day.  No process can be expected to eliminate a small number of mistakes.

Super Contributor
Posts: 479
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: Were You Around When Zip Codes "Became"?

Yes, I do sort of remember when zip codes came to be. The '60's do sound about right. And yes, mail is sorted by zip code. Years ago, we toured a USPS distribution center in our area when they had an open house. Postal employees sit at these long machines with the mail shooting by. Each envelop slows down enough so the employee keys in the zip code. You can write the incorrect city/town and state, but the correct zip code, and the mail will get there. Write the incorrect zip code, and you gum up the whole works.

Honored Contributor
Posts: 37,073
Registered: ‎06-11-2011

Re: Were You Around When Zip Codes "Became"?

@twopeas  Yes, it was in the '60s - I remember when we used to use a City, Zone and then State for the address.   For instance;  Chicago, 21, Illinois or whatever.  I think the zone ended up being part of the zip code later.  

 

I also remember when telephone numbers were not all digits.   Our telephone number started with the word Yellowstone and we would dial YE in stead of what is now the first two numbers of the telephone number.  OY I'm old! 

Honored Contributor
Posts: 17,129
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: Were You Around When Zip Codes "Became"?

TV programs always used Klondike 5 xxxx.

Now they use 555-xxxx

☼The best place to seek God is in a garden. You can dig for him there. GBShaw☼
Honored Contributor
Posts: 37,073
Registered: ‎06-11-2011

Re: Were You Around When Zip Codes "Became"?


JustJazzmom wrote:

TV programs always used Klondike 5 xxxx.

Now they use 555-xxxx


Only in Alaska.... LOL!

Occasional Contributor
Posts: 9
Registered: ‎01-21-2011

Re: Were You Around When Zip Codes "Became"?

Pearley, this caught my eye.   Our telephone number started with Yellowstone.   Are you in NYS?

Honored Contributor
Posts: 30,108
Registered: ‎03-12-2010

Re: Were You Around When Zip Codes "Became"?

Yes, I'm old so I was around when phones had a 2 party system.

 

When you think of the amount of mail the post office delivers every day they do an amazing job.

 

I sent my daughters friend a JoeZ leather jacket.  She instead received a green blouse that was huge and addressed to someone in California!  She lives in Arlington, Va.

 

No big deal, I called QVC and they said, 'tell her to just keep it and we'll send out to her the leather jacket'.

 

Sometimes things happen.

Honored Contributor
Posts: 19,970
Registered: ‎08-08-2010

Re: Were You Around When Zip Codes "Became"?

I don't remember a time before zip codes, born in 61.

 

I do remember being a small child and having a party line phone. We lived kind of rural for awhile, and there were five houses on our line. 

 

And later when we were in town, I remember my folks making a big deal when we finally were down to two houses on the line, then a private one. I don't remember using the phone back then, as when we were children, we weren't allowed to use or answer the phone until we were maybe 12 or so.