Postmen and messengers c1885
Bury Postmen 1885
Bury St Edmunds
Postmen and Messengers

Photograph by Palmer Clarke c 1885

Introduction to the Article

In 1861 the post office in Bury was at 10 the Buttermarket, and customers stood outdoors and handed in letters or bought stamps through a foot square window.
A few years later it moved to 24 Abbeygate Street, which was on the corner of Lower Baxter Street, where customers could be accommodated in a proper indoor office.
In 1881 there was a need for larger premises, so the Post Office moved to 52 Abbeygate Street, premises formerly used by Gurney's Bank who had moved next door. The next move would wait until 1895.

Postmen and Messengers of Bury St Edmunds around 1885.
Bury St Edmunds Postmen and Messengers c 1885

This photograph, dated to about 1885, was published in the Bury Free Press in July, 1935.

The photo is 11 inches by 7 inches (28cm by 18cm), and is mounted on board 12.25 inches by 8.5 inches (32cm by 21.5cm). In Good condition, it was sold on E-Bay in December 2010 to the author, accompanied by the following provenance.

The text from the Bury Free Press in 1935 read:

"Many of those seen in the above picture will be well remembered by readers. The group was taken 50 years ago at the time when the Post Office was in Abbeygate Street , opposite Messrs. Plumpton and son’s, where Messrs Woolnough Gross, son and Chamberlayne’s office is now situated. It was previously at the corner of Lower Baxter Street . It was in 1895 that the present Post Office on the Cornhill was opened.

The above photo was taken at Mr. Palmer Clarke’s studio on the Angel Hill, the site being that now under discussion for use as new Corporation offices.

At the time the photo was taken, in 1885, Mr. W Dawson was the Postmaster, and in the picture are all the town postmen and messengers at the time connected with the office. There have been eight Postmasters since then, and the staff has considerably changed, and the work likewise in the interval.

The three standing in the picture are:

Mr. Jeffery is still active and is occasionally seen in the town, where a daughter (Mrs. Steggles) is headmistress of the Victoria Street Infants’ School. A son lives at Slough , and another was a Police Inspector, who died a few years back.

The six in the second row are:

Seated are:

Article published in Bury Free Press, June 21st, 1935
Picture sold on E-Bay December, 2010

Signed on reverse L W Earle

Return to Chronicle at 1881 Go to Picture Story homepage Created 16th December 2010
Amended 17th December 2010
Go to Main Home Page