An acceptance is mailed within the meaning of the rule under consideration!, when it is put within the control of postal authorities authorized to receive it. Merely delivering an acceptance to a messenger with directions to mail it, amounts to nothing until the messenger actually deposits it in the mail.1'
15Potto p. Whitehead, 20 N. J. Eq. (5 C. E. Green) 56. A letter directed to the offeror at a place to which he only occasionally resorted, was held not to create a contract when
16Britten v. Phillips, 24 How. Pr. 111; Blake v. Hamburg-Bremen F. I. Co., 67 Tex. 160, 2 S. W. 368.
17 In Sehults v. Caledonia Insurance Co., 77 Fed. 375, it was held without discussion that such an acceptance was effective when mailed, though the deficiency in postage delayed delivery of the letter.
18 In Bal v. Van Staden, 20 So. African L. J. 407, it was held that mailing a letter of acceptance did not complete a contract when communication by mail was interrupted by war.
19Maday v. Harvey, 90 HI. 525, 32 Am. Rep. 35.
In England where postmen are not required by law to receive letters for mailing, the delivery of a letter to a postman with the request that he post it, is wholly ineffectual until the letter is actually posted. 20 In the United States the postal regulations require the carriers on their rounds to receive all prepaid letters that may be handed them for mailing. Therefore, handing an acceptance properly addressed and stamped to a postman would complete a contract.21 Depositing a letter in a street mail box is still more clearly a mailing of it within the requirements of the law.22
Sec. 86. It is not Important that the acceptor has the power to withdraw his acceptance from the mail. An inference is possible from an English case 23 that the doctrine that an acceptance is complete when it is mailed, is based on the assumption that thereafter the letter is no longer within the sender's control, and that where, as in France, the sender may reclaim his letter, the contract should not be regarded as complete until the acceptance is received. This doctrine can hardly be accepted in the United States, however, where, by the postal regulations,24 the sender of a letter may regain it by complying with certain specified formalities,25 and yet as has been
20Re London & Northern Bank,  1 CJi. 220.
21 In Pearoec Laogfit, 101 Pa. 507, 611, 47 Am. Rep. 737, the court said: "It certainly can make no difference whether the letter is handed directly to the carrier, or is first deposited in a receiving box and taken from thence by the same carrier. . . . The postal regulations of the United States require that carriers while on their rounds shall receive all letters prepaid that may be handed them for
22 "It is clear that when the plaintiff in pursuance of defendant's request deposited the duplicate of the contract signed by her, with her address, in the United States street mailing box, the agreement by that act became complete." Watson v. Russell, 149 N. Y. 388, 391, 44 N. E.
181. See also Re London & Northern Bank,  1 Ch. 220; Wood v. Cal-laghan, 61 Mich. 402, 411, 28 N. W. 162; Greenwich Bank v. DeGroot, 7 Hun, 210.
23 Ex parte Cote, L. R. 9 Ch. 27. The decision, however, involved the question whether the ownership in bills of exchange passed when they were mailed not whether a bilateral contract was completed. See supra, Sec.80.
24 Sec.Sec. 531, 633.
25See Crown Point Iron Co. v. Aetna Ins. Co., 127 N. Y. 608, 609, 28 N. E. 653,14 L. R, A. 147. In McDonald v. Chemical Natl. Bank, 174 U. S. 610, 620, 43 L. Ed. 1106, the court said, however,-"Nor can it be conceded that except on some extraordinary occasion and on evidence satisfactory to the post-office authorities, seen a contract is completed by an authorized mailing of an acceptance.26 Moreover, after an acceptance by telegraph, there can be little doubt that the company would, if requested by the sender of the dispatch immediately after he had delivered it for transmission, return it. In England the telegraph lines are in the control of the government, and are operated by the post-office department. Attention does not seem to have been called in the American cases to the difference in this respect of the telegraph from the post office as a medium of transmission. It may be observed that in the law of property title may pass by an authorized appropriation on the part of the seller though the property still remains entirely within his control,27 and though it would not be universally admitted that there may be delivery of a formal document remaining wholly within the maker's hands,28 it does not seem that a mere possibility that the maker may regain possession would prevent a delivery to the post-office from operating as a delivery of the instrument to the person addressed.29 Though the analogy is by no means perfect between a transfer of property or of a formal instrument on mailing and the formation of a bilateral contract by the mailing of a letter of acceptance, no reason is apparent why the possibility of withdrawal by the sender should be of any more importance in the latter case than in the former.