By Jack Gurner
Home mail delivery in Water Valley celebrates its 90th birthday this month. In 1917 it cost just two cents to mail a letter. Beginning on May 14, 2007 it will cost two cents more when postal rates go from 39 cents to 41 cents.
A newspaper article from the time touted home delivery as being, “of great benefit to our people bringing their mail to their doors twice daily.” The city had to build crossings and sidewalks all over town in order for the service to be put into operation, according to the article.
Things have changed since 1917, says Water Valley Postmaster Sherman Hillhouse. Today there are two city routes, five rural routes and 584 post office boxes with almost 4000 possible deliveries every day. Each week approximately 71,000 pieces of mail pass through the local office.
Hillhouse says that the Water Valley Post Office employs 16 people and serves parts of four counties; Yalobusha, Calhoun, Panola and Lafayette.