Some time ago I posted the following query to crvnet:

>     Hello - I visited the Dutchess County Fair in Rhinebeck, NY
>     today and one item on display was particularly interesting to
>     me, but no one had much info on it.  It was called a US Mail
>     Service sled, used in Vermont (exact location unknown) sometime
>     between 1900 and 1920. Painted wooden dome top to enclose the
>     driver and actual small glass windows around side & front, much
>     like today's cars. Entire size, not including the metal parts
>     off the front that would connect to the horses, was
>     approximately 5'Long by 3' wide, by 3.5' high.  Sled blads
>     connected beneath run the entire length of the vehicle.  Pulled
>     by horses, I presume, through snow covered roadways to deliver
>     the mail. Is there any information on this available.  Thank
>     you - Janet Dianni

Many thanks to the crvnetters who responded. I am posting a summary
of the replies below, in case some of them were not received by the

    We have a mail sled at the President Calvin Coolidge State
    Historic Site in Plymouth Notch which came from Concord, Vermont
    and is similar to one used on a postage stamp released by the
    postal service about eight or so years ago.  It's a small
    enclosed carriage with a small stove inside and I think, because
    of the image on the postage stamp was used in rural areas.  I am
    forwarding your message to Bill Jenney, our Regional Historic
    Site Administrator, and perhaps he can measure our mail sled and
    tell you more about it. He may have a photograph he could scan
    and send to you.

    John P. Dumville
    Historic Sites Operations Chief
    Vermont Division for Historic Preservation
    National Life Building, Drawer 20
    Montpelier, VT 05620-0501 <>

    Telephone 802-828-3051  Fax 802-828-3206

Karl Bridges <[log in to unmask]> commented:

    Actually this is true.  There is an example of one of these
    vehicles at the Calvin Coolidge Homestead in the barn. Which leads
    to the punch line for this.  One day I was in the barn there at
    the Homestead standing near this sled (which has a small stove in
    one corner) when a small boy tourist came in, looked in the sled
    at the stove, and turning excitedly to his Mother said "Look Mom.
    You got to see this. They used to burn the junk mail."

[For information about the Calvin Coolidge Homestead, you may visit
the Web site for the Calvin Coolidge Memorial Foundation at

Another source suggested:

    Check with the Vermont Historical Society's librarian, Paul
    Carnahan. VHS must/may have photos of vehicles like this.

[To contact the Vermont Historical Society, visit its Web site at
<> or telephone 802-828-2291. Note: They
will be packing up their library to move to a new location ca. November

Robert Sloma of GEO/ARCH wrote:

    I would assume that mail sleds were fairly common in northern
    parts of the us & Canada. The Adirondack Museum at Blue
    Mountain Lake has a nice NY example. I'm not sure of any other
    specific sources of information. Good Luck.

Again, many thanks to everyone for your help.

With best regards,


Kristin Peterson-Ishaq
Center for Research on Vermont
   and Vermont Studies Program
University of Vermont
Nolin House, 589 Main Street
Burlington, VT 05401-3439
Telephone: 802-656-4389
Email: [log in to unmask]
Fax: 802-656-8518
Visit the Center's Web site: