Neither Snow Nor Rain Nor Heat Nor Gloom—Nor Politics?

The Fireside—News and Views from The Living New Deal

Neither Snow Nor Rain Nor Heat Nor Gloom—Nor Politics?

During the Great Depression, struggling artists got work through federal art programs creating public art that reflected America to itself. The 1,200 murals they painted in post offices around the country often portrayed hard work, determination and confidence—values meant to encourage Americans through hard times. As post offices are sold and these murals vanish from view, Americans’ determination and confidence are being tested, as is the U.S. Postal Service’s ability to deliver the 80 million mail-in ballots expected to be cast in next month’s election on time—potentially disqualifying them. Chiseled in granite on New York City General Post Office is this promise, “Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.” It makes no promises about politics.

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“Mail Transportation” (1938) by Fletcher Martin, San Pedro, California, Post Office.

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