Thursday, October 10, 2019

Wallet Card and Mailbox History - Part I

Did you know that mailboxes and postal relay boxes have their date of manufacture stamped on the side?

Postal relay boxes are often seen in large cities, but occasionally can be found elsewhere. They are places for the post office to drop off mail for a carrier to pick up without having to go all the way back to the post office. Unlike standard mailboxes, these are green and do not have an opening for people to insert mail.

Here is an example of a row of relay boxes in Manhattan.

You can see the date stamp on the bottom of the broad side of a box, whether blue or green, on the bottom of the right side of the box.

All New York City blue boxes have been replaced in the past year to the new tamper-proof boxes that are being rolled out nationwide. Even on Long Island I haven't seen any that date back to earlier than the 1990s. However the green box photographed above is a lot older!


  1. I think there are still a few relay boxes in my neighborhood. I'm going to have to check out the dates stamped on them now!

  2. Ha, I always wondered about mailboxes that didn't have an opening to drop mail into. Makes sense! Pretty cool you found one from 1954.

  3. I had no idea that these kind of mailboxes had a date on them, it's really neat to know though. Too bad people can't stop trying to steal mail, otherwise the older boxes would be able to stick around a little longer.