The U.S. Postal Service, facing severe financial problems, is considering the closure of hundreds of small post offices across the country. Dozens of residents crowded into Sheldon’s on Friday to hear a USPS official talk about options for the post office there:
USPS manger of post office operations Michael Darling announced to the crowd that the post office would remain open with shortened hours, in part to the USPS’ Post Plan.
Post Plan for Devil’s Elbow means reduced hours of operation where people can actually engage in counter service inside the store. Patrons will still have access to their P.O. boxes as long as the store is open. […]
One representative from the Route 66 Association of Missouri expressed concern that the new hours would prevent tourists from sending mail from the location and cause revenue loss.
Darling said he didn’t know if consideration was given to the issue of tourism, but “those things existed long before we got to this point.” He did reassure the crowd that if business grows, normal hours may be reconsidered.
Proposed hours for the post office will be noon to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, starting in January at the earliest. Hours on Saturdays would stay unchanged.
Tonya Pike, who attended the meeting, said keeping the Sheldon’s post office open isn’t set in stone. She urged that readers print and fill out this survey form, choose Option 1, and mail it ASAP to the area’s postmaster.
She said foreigners who travel Route 66 could have sway in the final decision, and result in more-extended hours for the post office at Sheldon’s. Pike instructed:
At the bottom, where it says, “Additional Comments”, please make a brief statement that you do not want to see operations at Devils Elbow altered, that it provides a special experience for Route 66 travelers and that reducing its hours could potentially limit that experience.
The mailing address is:
406 East Street
Stockton, MO 65785-9998
Sheldon’s, previously known as Miller’s Market, was built in 1954. It’s rock-throwing distance from old Route 66 through Devil’s Elbow.
UPDATE 11/1/2012: The Daily Guide has posted this update about the Route 66 Association of Missouri’s efforts to keep the post office open.