Monday, January 26, 2015

When The Mail Man Rang Twice…

Have you ever wondered what happened to your mail service? Are you realizing what cuts the Postal Service has done to your daily mail delivery?

As I opened the “Edmonton Journal” this morning I found an article about a Postal cut-back made on January 26 1950 reducing daily residential mail service to only once a day.


So the postman rang twice a day? 

That sure puts today’s mail service in a different light.

But this 1950 service reduction was only the beginning. Canada Post was to make further reductions. In 1969 mail service was further reduced to 5 days a week. No more mail delivery on Saturdays.

While the 1950 service cut-back affected 30 Edmonton postmen, we are now looking at  Canada-wide job losses in the thousands over the next 5 years, as Canada Post has announced a “major overhaul” accompanied by sharp increases of postage rates.


How many more cut-backs can we tolerate?

I see growing opportunities for private courier companies on the horizon. That is, if you are willing to pay for it. Maybe electronic mail will take over more and more? With the latest generation of smart phones I get an alert every time a new email is deposited in my mailbox.

If you are of the older generation you will also remember that your milk was delivered to your door.
Milkman (1)milkmanOf course, your milk came only once a day or twice a week. Naturally, that kind of service would not even
work today as nobody would be home to take the milk inside as mom has gotten a job as well and is busy working in the city. Our milk would sit outside all day long turning sour.

I have heard some places still have an ice cream truck lumbering through the neighbourhood. But I guess it’s suffering a slow death as well.

icecream truck
Our way of life sure changed a lot over the last 40-50 years and more changes are to come. 

We have gotten busier than ever and with an ever-increasing traffic problem we now have less time and a growing horror to do our grocery-shopping. The result is a booming fast-food industry and all kind of pre-cooked food-items available in your food market. National mail order companies are already in the market delivering fresh vegetables pr. courier to your door.
logoAre our busy lives forcing us to go looking for alternatives?  Many people already are, as a near throw-back to pre-digital times is showing. An Edmonton-based company called GROCERY-BOX is now offering food deliveries right to your door. What they really do is going shopping for you. Delivery fee: 30 Bucks (20 for seniors and people with disabilities).  And that’s all they do - at your favorite food store. Instead of getting just milk and cream, your entire grocery bag is filled for you while you are still plotting over your work. 
The big question is whether somebody is going to be home to take the delivery inside or whether neighbour’s dog will be feasting on the delivery.
Chances are, you are still stuck in traffic when the delivery boy is ringing twice.

Have a wonderful day!


  1. I remember twice a day and Saturday mail delivery, and also the Toyon Milk delivery, which I think was twice a week. Also the ice cream man, and when I really young, there was an ice truck that used to come up the street for people who still had an "ice box." Things sure have changed. It's kind of cool to be part of a generation that can remember those things, and also be driving around in a house on wheels typing on a laptop keyboard. Lots of changes during our lifetimes, and more to come, I'm sure. Thanks for the walk down memory lane. :)

  2. Edmonton's last milkman retired in 2012

    When I was little, I remember we had a little cubby with a separate door beside the regular door of our house (back door) where the delivery guy put the milk . It would stay cool there for a few hours before my mom realized the milk man had come. But it never spoiled.
    I think we even had cheese and eggs delivered sometimes.

    1. THX for the link. I read the article. It really shows what's been going on.

    2. After I read your input I (Bea) went to check by the back entrance. There I saw a "cat door". Now I am convinced that it is an old "milk door". There is one small door outside and inside. In between there is space enough for a few bottles, that space is now filled with insulating material. I took some photos and maybe Peter will post them later.

  3. I remember milk delivery in our house in the city of Calgary, but it was a treat when we would visit my uncles place in Edmonton, their milk man still came with a team pulling his milk wagon, and you could always depend on him to give the kids a chunk of ice to suck on a hot summer day.

  4. I'm down in the states, and I have similar memories. Every time I get a bit nostalgic, I also look at the conveniences we have now. All the b!ogs and email would not be possible. Not many people could do you this full-time RV
    Lifestyle either.

    Sadly, I am also reminded of a time of great ignorance and prejudice. I was so unaware of the atrocities that went on in our country.
    I was a kid in my own world shielded from those things. I went to COLLEGE, had my eyes opened.
    Those are days I'm sure no one wants to revisit.


We like to hear from you. You can add your comment here: