This section is from the book "Hill's Manual Of Social And Business Forms: A Guide To Correct Writing", by Thos. E. Hill. Also available from Amazon: Hill's Manual Of Social And Business Forms: The How-To-Do-Everything Book Of Victorian America.
The postmaster, with a private secretary, has an office, where he maintains a general supervision over the entire post-office and its business, answering correspondence relating to postal business, and giving the public such information concerning the postal service as may be necessary for the general good. In his office, also, is an
"inquiry clerk," whose business it is to receive all complaints concerning missing letters and other mail-matter, to institute searches therefor in his own or other interested post-offices, etc.
In the larger post-offices, like that at Chicago, the work is divided into sections. The general laws provide for clerks, at various salaries, and the postmasters, with the consent of the Post master-General, assign to each a distinctive branch of labor. In the Chicago Post-Offlce, for instance, there are five divisions, embracing all the operations of the office, as follows:
The Executive Department - Composed of the assistant postmaster. the auditor of post-office accounts, the book-keeper, the cashier, the watchmen, etc
The Mailing Department - Devoted to the reception and sending-off of mail-matter passing into and through the office, and out of it, in the regular course of business.
The Letter Delivery - Including the superintendent of free delivery and the letter-carriers, with the general delivery, the box-delivery, etc.
The Registered-Letter Department - For the registry and mailing of valuable letters and the delivery of registered letters to the proper parties.
The Money-Order Department - In which money-orders upon other post-offices in the United States and several foreign countries are issued, and similar orders from other post-offices are paid to the proper persons.
Connected with the principal post-offices are also two or more special agents of the Post-Office Department, whose business it is to superintend the railway postal service, and special agents employed in the free delivery and money-order service, in the interest of the Depart-raent.
This officer is appointed by the postmaster, who is responsible for his acts. He is, as his title indicates, the active assistant of the postmaster in supervising the work of the post-office. He cannot be a contractor for carrying any mail, nor be interested in any mail-carrying contract, and his salary varies according to the location and circumstances of his appointment.
The auditor is charged with the examination and correction of the accounts of the postmaster with the Government, his subordinate officers, clerks and employes of the post-office.
The book-keeper is charged with the duty of correctly opening, keeping and closing, from time to time, the accounts of the postmaster with the Government and with every individual doing business with or for his post-office, subject to the orders of the postmaster and assistant postmaster, by whom his salary is fixed.
This officer has supervision of all the money paid into or out of the post-office, subject to the orders of the postmaster and assistant postmaster, and provides for its safe keeping and proper deposit with the United States Sub-Treasurer, or in some other designated place.