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Blog > The Little Mail Carriers at the National Postmark Museum!

Earlier this year, we noticed a curious link on Terry’s (aka Terry5) profile… which triggered a few enthusiastic email exchanges, and eventually ended with the Little Mail Carriers jumping onto an envelope headed to Ohio to check out a very special place. Come discover the Postmark Collectors Club, and their wonderful museum!

The Little Mail Carriers at the National Postmark Museum

Hi everyone! We traveled to the center of the USA to visit the National Postmark Museum, the premiere collection of the Postmark Collectors Club. Yes! There is a whole club devoted to the collecting, studying and enjoying the trusted postmark! The Club has been around since 1946 and a few years later some of the Club members formed a group collection of postmarks. When the collection began to grow, they actually put it into an old School Bus!

The Little Mail Carriers at the National Postmark Museum

The club’s membership comes from all across the USA and many other countries. Each year they hold an annual convention somewhere around the USA, getting together to share postmarks, stories and good wishes. The Museum has continued to grow and preserve material important to the field of postmarks and postal history. The Museum has been in a few homes along the way typically moving to larger spaces to house the holdings. Then it moved to Bellevue, Ohio, USA, into the Historic Lyme Village, where it has been since 1978.

The Little Mail Carriers at the National Postmark Museum

One of the largest single holdings is the Willett-Thompson Collection, and today it is held in more than 300 blue binders.

The Little Mail Carriers at the National Postmark Museum

We checked out many of the special collections including postmarks from Military Camps and Bases. “First Day Cover” with postmarks that were only cancelled on the first day that a new stamp is issued by the Post Office.

The Little Mail Carriers at the National Postmark Museum

There are so many of these in this collection, covering many years. Some of the other special collections here in the Museum include postmarks with slogans, “Pray for Peace” cancels, and individual U.S. state collections. Being mail carriers, we moved over to our favorite part of the museum, a collection of Post Office photographs.

The Little Mail Carriers at the National Postmark Museum

The museum has drawers and drawers holding more than 55,000 pictures of Post Offices including new and old ones, from around the USA and around the World. They have thousands more pictures in their on-line internet collection.

The Little Mail Carriers at the National Postmark Museum

Another cool stop on our journey was the assortment of memorabilia and artifacts from Post Offices, hand stamps, canceling devices, sorting windows, mailboxes… and even some model mail trucks! All of these tools helped move the mail. There is certainly a passion here for collecting and showing mail and postcards, especially those with interesting postmarks. Each letter and postcard has a story to tell and the cancel helps telling that story!

The Little Mail Carriers at the National Postmark Museum

PS – Thank you very much Terry and Ron for these wonderful photos and report! They were a nice distraction from the nail-biting wait for postcard number 50 million to be registered…

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31 comments so far

STUFFellaneous, United States of America
I was born and raised in Ohio and never knew about this place. Next time I go home for a visit I'm going to see if I can go there. Thanks for sharing this!!!
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NIDUSKA, Finland
Thank You
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ned44440, Ireland
Wonderful article. Another place on the ever growing bucket list.
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Tranchile, Guernsey
Very interesting being a stamp collector and also collector of postal related items.
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msquared47, United States of America
Sounds like a very cool place to visit!
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amievawu, China
The first place which I will visit when I travel to Ohio! Thanks for sharing~
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JonathanChua, Singapore
Thank you so much for the sharing....looks like a great place...cheers.
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sharifah, Brunei
Wow.....how i wish our Stamp Gallery be tranformed to be a lot better and most convenient like this. Well not exactly, even a 10% is good enough. 😻😻. Gonna have to show it to the boss for next FY project 😂😂😂😂😂😂
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lostresviajeros, Austria
Impressive collection! Thanks for sharing!
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ivandobreff, Bulgaria
:) :) :) :)
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shugal, Germany
Interesting! Would have been nice to add location and opening hours to the article, so here comes:
Historic Lyme Village
5001 Ohio State Route 4
Bellevue, OH 44811
USA
open from April to September each Wednesday 10:00 - 16:00 (10 AM -4PM) and on special request.
No information on admission fee is given, so I guess it's free, but most likely you'll have to pay for the Historic Lyme Village (again no information on the PMCC homepage).

I think I'll need two days in Bellevue, one for the postmark museum and at least one for the surrounding museum village. https://www.lymevillage.com/
Opening hours:
June, July & August
Tuesday - Saturday: 10:00 am - 4:00 pm
Sunday: 12:00 pm - 4:00 pm
September
Sundays: 12:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Admission fees:
Adults: $10.00
Children 6-12: $5.00
Senior Citizens: $9.00
Groups (12 or more): $8.00
Children under 6 FREE with an adult.

Bellevue is located in Ohio close to Lake Erie, about the middle between Cleveland and Toledo. Closest international airport is Cleveland Hopkins nternational Airport (CLE), though you may have more luck with direct flights to Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport (DTW).

Put on my ever expanding list of places I would really like to visit. :-)
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Prinzmucki, Germany
Whow a very great collection !
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meiadeleite, Portugal
@shugal thank you for the extra info — we appreciate it!
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Sfander, Canada
Really enjoyed reading about the National Postmark Museum. I have a large collection of antique postcards and the postmarks add to the fascination of the postcard for me. I can understand why
there are so many postmark enthusiasts. Too bad you didn't show the 'thumb print' cancel which occurred before they had official stampers made. I will certainly be checking out their website.
Great story!
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Talal90Ahmed, Iraq
waooooo- nice object- happy postcrosser-
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betslets, United States of America
It's fun to know about these special places. I have a couple of older cards in my collection, that were given to me years ago, that have RRPO postmarks (from a train's Post Office car travelling between two cities) which I think are interesting. When I first began collecting postcards, I really never paid much attention to the "marks".
Isn't it interesting that there is so much to enjoy on just a little postcard - from the photo/art on the front, the descriptions on the back, the stamps, the postmarks and the wonderful messages. Each one tells such great stories.
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fisherman, Ireland
I love those postmark exhibits. We have many here in Ireland who collect the older postmarks many of which were in the gaelic language
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Lurgan-Lad, United States of America
Leave extra time to visit Lyme Village on your visit . We have been there for the Pioneer Days weekend and the Home tour . It is really excellent .
Westbound on Route 20 there is a sign for Lyme Village , but not Eastbound so it is easy to miss. Not too far is the Thomas Edison home in Milan Ohio , another excellent stopover
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Flippie, Canada
Thank you for all your updates postcrossers. Thanks for the Story.
-Merry Christmas and a good New Year- with a lot off new cards, Anneke
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Marjie, United Kingdom
I love the Little Mail Carriers! I wonder if they might ever want to come and visit the Handwritten Letter Appreciation Society which is in Swanage in the UK?Marjorie
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Luziaceleste, Brazil
So many nice places to visit in world!!!!
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JoDennis, United States of America
Thanks for the fun story. Didn’t know about this place and I live in Detroit MI — so close!
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IrinaAlexandr, Russia
This is very interesting!
Thanks!
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susi-k, Germany
This is a really nice story and description. As I wrote my profile partially new yesterday evening, I will put more emphasis on stamps from next year on to the postcards I send.
I hadn´t heard about the Ohio Postmark Museum and I always "soak descriptions about museums and conventions up like a sponge" - I´m so curious about it! Thanks for telling about the museum!
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djcid, United States of America
I wonder if this place offers it's own unique Postmark? How about a PostCard?!?!?!
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duncanpjames, United Kingdom
Thank you, Little Post carriers (Mail) for a great exhibition
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lilacs, Germany
Thanks for this great story. Hope I can visit this museum in Ohio. I always try to get special postmarks for my sending cards. The German Post offers several every month.
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rcornelison, United States of America
I'm a member of the postmark club, but have never been to the museum. I did get to go to one of the conventions, lots of fun. I love reading about the traveling mailman.
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marica_t, United States of America
Huh - I live in Ohio and I'm only about a 1.5 hour drive away! I should visit sometime! :D
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John_Doe, Germany
Very informative and interesting. Thanks for this post, little postman.
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Quitziabird, France
C'est génial de suivre les aventures de ces petits Playmobil !
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