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 Parcel post

The First Books-By-Mail Program in Wisconsin

Posted by Larry T. Nix
Larry T. Nix
Larry T. 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

28 Bookmobiles ca Gilbert H. Doane library education Buttons Hall of Fame 2016 Lutie Eugenia Stearns Eager Free Public Library Woman's Congress Hall of Fame 2015 Richard E. Krug Wisconsin Library Heritage Center caly film Lutie Stearns Hall of Fame 2012 Katharine MacDonald Jones Wisconsin Literary Travel Guide presentations library legislation Larry T. Nix National Bookmobile Day Anniversaries Suring Area Public Library Hall of Fame 2015 Edward Asahel Birge Charles Bunge Wisconsin Association of Academic Librarians campa Tower Hill Wisconsin S. Janice Kee Library Systems Brown County Library WLA 125 Marketing-Publicity Hall of Fame 2012 Portage Public Library Wisconsin Historical Society Cornelia Marving Pierce Louise S. Robbins Elroy Public Library cam buil Wisconsin State Law Library campaign McMillan Memorial Library library memorabilia William J. Wilson Wisconsin Federation of Women's Clubs Brown Deer Public Library John J. Jax American Library Association caly film Meter mail slogans UW-Milwaukee School of Information Studies Delia Ovitz books-by-mail Hall of Fame 2013 Gerald A. Somers state historical society 21 Wisconsin Library Bulletin Anniversaries School of Library and Information Studies Uncategorized Library History Campaign Jane K. Billings Orrilla Blackshear Exhibits Events Wayne A. Wiegand Wisconsin Free Library Commission Hall of Fame 2011 Library Buidlings Hall of Fame 2015 Library celebrations John Miller Chancellor Hall of Fame 2009 Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries Hall of Fame 2018 Hall of Fame 2017 Cooperative Children's Book Center Kimberly-Little Chute Public Library Ice Storm Middleton Public Library Academic Librarians 23 Hall of Fame 2019 Dorothea M. Krause 11 Milwaukee Art Museum Cam Gertrude Thurow Matthew S. Dudgeon T. B. Scott Free Public Library WWI Library War Service Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries Postcards Nancy Marshall Dianne McAfee Hopkins Hall fo Fame 2012 Richard J. Sorensen Wisconsin Rapids WLA 125 Sarah Janice Kee Hall of Fame 2008 Hall of Fame 2015 Parcel post bed and breakfast Postcards trav Milwaukee Public Library Public libraries Library People Amer Marjorie Sornson Malmberg Madison Public Library Academic Libraries 24 Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries Hall of Fame 2014 State Law Library 22 Clinton Public Library Pewaukee Public Library Brown Deer Public Library Bob Bochfer 20 Irene W. Newman People Peter G. Hamon Black River Falls Public Library Centennial Robert Bocher Sandra Friedman Dolnick Oshkosh Public Library Eratus Swift Wilcox background Postcards Events & Meetings CCBC Library people UW-Madison school of library and information studies Hall of Fame 2015 Helen Adams Dick Sorensen UW-Milwaukee Libraries Carl Spitzweg Ruby Roeder Library people Postcards Clarence Brown Lester Soughton Public Library Special libraries Lucy E. Smith Morris Black River Falls COLAND traveling libraries Manitowoc Public Library DeForest Area Public Library caly film Ruth Ann Montgomery Hall of Fame 2012 Wilbur Lyle Eberhart Milwaukee Public Library Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries anniversaries Beloit Public Library membership libraries Pinback buttons Frank Avery Hutchins Inform Wisconsin 27 Hall of Fame 2018 Wisconsin Free Library Commission Historical Register WLA 125 Hartford Public Library Carnegie libraries American Library Association Library War Service James Duane Doty Zona Gale WLA 125 White House Conference on Library and Information Services Campaign Publications Events & Meetings Capitol Fire 1904 Wisconsin Library Association Public libraries Council on Library and Network Development Dick Sorensen Association of Library Trustees Advocates and Friends Hall of Fame 2010 Public library systems Digital Collections J. D. Witter archives Hall campaign Jerome P. Daniels campaign I Love Libraries library exhibit Library Trustees Campaing for Wisconsin Libraries Increase A. Lapham Campaign hall of WHCLIS Governor's Conference on Library and Information Services School libraries Library Artifacts Evansville Wisconsin National Library Week Bernard Schwab Library Buildings 14 WAAL Appleton Public Library Superior Carnegie Libraries Klaus Linderfelt Wisconsin State Normal School-Milwaukee 10 Library e Ripon Public Library Rusk County Community Library bookworm James Huff Stout Lowell W. Wilson Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries Nolan I. Neds Beaver Dam Public Library Wisconsin Library Trustees and Friends World War I

Wisconsin Library Association Foundation Logo