Seapost -> German Sea Post Office

German Sea Post Office
on board Hamburg America Line's Füerst Bismark

Reproduction of an article from THE GRAPHIC dated August 20th 1892

Floating Post-Office on a German Transatlantic Liner

In these days of "ocean greyhounds" Europe and the United States are brought into such rapid communication that a London letter takes scarcely more time to cross the Atlantic than to reach many out of-the way spots on our own Continent. Every second of time is economised in the Transatlantic mail services: witness, for instance, the ocean post offices lately installed on board the North German Lloyd and Hamburg American steamship lines. Instead of the mails being sorted before the departure and on the arrival of the steamers, this work is now done on board during the voyage following the practice of our own mail trains. Thus a letter can be posted from Europe up to almost the last moment before the steamer leaves, and the mails are ready for distribution directly the vessel reaches American shores. Further, letters written during the passage can be mailed ready for delivery, and other postal business transacted by the passengers, an important matter for business people.

The post office on board these German vessels is situated in the second class quarters, and is fitted up with all the arrangements and appliances of an office on land. Two clerks are on duty - one German, the other American and the work goes on in as regular and orderly a fashion as if the officials were at home rather than in a floating city. Our illustration is from a drawing by Herr Willy Stöwer.

Sorting mail on board a German Sea Post Office

US-German Seapost No. 12 commenced on Hamburg America Line's Füerst Bismark on 21st May 1891 [United States Sea Post Cancellations, Part 1, Transatlantic Routes, Cockrill Booklet No 54].

Click this link to review a list of cancellations used on board German and American ships operating on the North Atlantic.

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