Wisconsin Library Heritage Center

The Wisconsin Library Heritage Center is a program of the Wisconsin Library Association Foundation promoting understanding and appreciation of the history of libraries and librarianship in Wisconsin.

Subscribe to feed Viewing entries tagged books-by-mail

The First Books-By-Mail Program in Wisconsin

Posted by Larry Nix
Larry Nix
Larry Nix has not set their biography yet
User is currently offline
on Thursday, September 01, 2016
in WLA 125
stamp-us-parcel-72Parcel post, the delivery of packages through the mail, began in the United States on January 1, 1913.  Libraries had long lobbied for a special rate for library materials sent through the mail, and in 1914 the postmaster general authorized the shipment of books at the parcel post rate. This decision opened up significant possibilities for library service to geographically remote populations.  One of the first librarians to realize the potential of parcel post and library service was Matthew S. Dudgeon, the Secretary of the Wisconsin Free Library Commission (WFLC). Under Dudgeon's leadership the WFLC began implementing a system in which any resident of the state could request a book from the major libraries in Madison including the University of Wisconsin Library and the State Historical Society Library. There was little red tape involved. All that was required was a letter requesting a book along with the postage. Under the new postal rates a book could be sent anywhere within a 150 mile radius of Madison for an average of six cents and for greater distances for eight cents. Implementation of this system was facilitated by the fact that the President of the University of Wisconsin and the Secretary of the Wisconsin Historical Society served on the WFLC board. An article about Dudgeon's parcel post system appeared in the December, 1915 issue of American Review of Reviews.


Popular Tags

Lutie Stearns WHCLIS Hall fo Fame 2012 hall of Charles Bunge Hall of Fame 2014 Hall of Fame 2015 library legislation Wayne A. Wiegand 21 WLA 125 Ripon Public Library Anniversaries Peter G. Hamon Carl Spitzweg books-by-mail Nolan I. Neds Hall of Fame 2015 Library celebrations Bookmobiles Wisconsin Library Heritage Center Kimberly-Little Chute Public Library Hall of Fame 2012 Pewaukee Public Library Tower Hill Wisconsin WLA 125 Academic Libraries Milwaukee Art Museum campaign Wisconsin Literary Travel Guide State Law Library Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries Black River Falls Public Library Increase A. Lapham J. D. Witter Capitol Fire 1904 T. B. Scott Free Public Library Evansville Wisconsin Association of Library Trustees Advocates and Friends Ice Storm Events & Meetings Cornelia Marving Pierce Library Buidlings S. Janice Kee Library People Brown Deer Public Library Academic Librarians Library people Brown Deer Public Library 23 Library people Postcards Madison Public Library Library Buildings Dianne McAfee Hopkins Wisconsin Library Trustees and Friends Woman's Congress I Love Libraries Carnegie libraries bookworm Orrilla Blackshear School libraries ca Special libraries CCBC 10 Meter mail slogans World War I presentations state historical society Events Suring Area Public Library trav Postcards buil library exhibit Delia Ovitz People Hall of Fame 2011 Zona Gale McMillan Memorial Library Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries caly film Amer UW-Milwaukee School of Information Studies Public libraries Library Artifacts Hall of Fame 2012 24 Governor's Conference on Library and Information Services Richard E. Krug Hall American Library Association Campaing for Wisconsin Libraries John Miller Chancellor traveling libraries Brown County Library Centennial Wisconsin Historical Society Sarah Janice Kee Uncategorized Black River Falls Public library systems UW-Madison school of library and information studies Jane K. Billings WLA 125 American Library Association Library War Service Hall of Fame 2015 11 Library Systems 20 Publications Anniversaries Gertrude Thurow 22 Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries James Duane Doty Historical Register 27 Appleton Public Library Hall of Fame 2009 Exhibits Manitowoc Public Library Lutie Eugenia Stearns Buttons Parcel post Larry T. Nix Edward Asahel Birge WAAL bed and breakfast Library Trustees Eager Free Public Library Marjorie Sornson Malmberg caly film Portage Public Library Hall of Fame 2008 library memorabilia Hall of Fame 2013 National Bookmobile Day Milwaukee Public Library National Library Week Dorothea M. Krause Gilbert H. Doane Events & Meetings White House Conference on Library and Information Services Frank Avery Hutchins Hall of Fame 2016 Wisconsin Rapids Council on Library and Network Development Eratus Swift Wilcox Campaign Oshkosh Public Library 28 Wisconsin Library Bulletin Cooperative Children's Book Center archives Irene W. Newman Clinton Public Library School of Library and Information Studies Clarence Brown Lester DeForest Area Public Library Matthew S. Dudgeon Marketing-Publicity Milwaukee Public Library campaign Katharine MacDonald Jones Middleton Public Library Klaus Linderfelt Elroy Public Library Hall of Fame 2012 14 Public libraries Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries Wisconsin Free Library Commission Wisconsin Library Association Bernard Schwab Wisconsin State Normal School-Milwaukee Library History campa caly film Campaign Cam library education Ruth Ann Montgomery campaign Superior Carnegie Libraries James Huff Stout WWI Library War Service Digital Collections Hartford Public Library Postcards Wisconsin Association of Academic Librarians Hall of Fame 2015 Hall of Fame 2015 anniversaries cam Soughton Public Library Pinback buttons COLAND Campaign Postcards Rusk County Community Library Wisconsin State Law Library UW-Milwaukee Libraries William J. Wilson Beloit Public Library Beaver Dam Public Library WLA 125 Hall of Fame 2010 Gerald A. Somers Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries Inform Wisconsin Jerome P. Daniels Wisconsin Free Library Commission Wilbur Lyle Eberhart membership libraries background

Wisconsin Library Association Foundation Logo