Revised: 03/28/2014 kw
1997 Ken Mackenzie Writer's Award Winner
Christmas Cancels of Kentucky
Lawrence, CPC #1040
A Yule Log article entitled "The Christmas Connection" by Don Dombrowsky (January/February 1994) made me aware of one town cancel I had never seen. The Christmas, Kentucky post office was open from 1909 to 1930. The article featured a cover with a last day cancel. I have yet to add one of those covers to my collection.
At one time I thought I had quite a large collection of Kentucky cancels. Then I came across an index of all of the post offices that have ever existed in this state. There are/were more than seven thousand! What a let down to dis cover that my meager collection consisted of less than 5 percent of the obtainable cancels. But now with this reference in hand, I could look for other Kentucky cancels with Christmas connections. I found several.
The following post offices, to the best of my knowledge, are still open. There is Bethlehem (zip 40007), Berry (41003), Hope (40334), Hollybush (41823), Nazareth (40048) Nicholasville (40356), Mistletoe (41351), Saint Joseph (42373), Sa int Mary (40063), Miracle (40856), and Partridge (40862). The Bethlehem post office will apply a nice rubber stamp, along with its cancel to all mail sent at Christmas time.
If you are lucky, or know some postal history buffs, you may find covers from one of the following closed post offices: Angel (1892-1914), Halo (1923-1993), Faith (1888-1917), Joseph (1898-1902 and 1910-1913), Mary (1891-1898 and 1901-1 986), Wisemantown (1893-1957), and Peartree (1889-1916). There have been several post offices named Bell or Bell's. The most recent was open from 1887-1908. Too bad that Peartree is closed. I doubt anyone ever made a cover with both Partridge and Peartree cancels.
There are many interesting sounding town names in Kentucky. Someday when I retire, I will drive the state back roads in search of places like Hard Scrabble, Soft Shell, Poteet, Happy, Thousandsticks, Sideway, Why, Whynot, Quicksand and Crummies. At least the founders had a sense of humor.
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