The term ‘mail’ relates mostly it to e-mail these days, but try telling that to someone who collects stamps or postage artifacts as a hobby. If your interests lie in stamp collection and other postage-related things, do visit the National Postal Museum when on private tours Washington DC. The museum, opened in 1993 and owned by the Smithsonian Institution, has a collection of stamps and postal artifacts, as well as other informative exhibitions for people of all ages. What’s more, visitors get to know the progression of the postal services, and how people used them both domestically and beyond the border. The collection at the Postal Museum, which includes archived objects and documents, examines this evolution.
Visitors to this museum can see objects used to transport mail, including everything from early on-road automotives to airplanes propelled by horsepower, and can discover stamp making as well as its designing. Much like most of Smithsonian’s museums, this one too is devoted to archiving, study and exhibition of a particular field.
The Postal Museum’s stamp gallery, named after William Hunt Gross, the American investor, is the biggest of its kind in the world. You can see a wide variety of stamps in this gallery. The museum also has an atrium, with a tall ceiling decorated with objects related to postal past. The presentation of objects in the atrium would remind visitors of the installations at the National Air and Space Museum. In other words, there are airmail planes that are held aloft near the ceiling, and the museum also has stagecoach from the 19th Century, as well as an early 20th Century mail truck of Ford Motor Company.
Planning a National Postal Museum Tour
The museum resides adjacent to Union Station along the Massachusetts Avenue, and stays open from 10:00 am to 05:30 pm each day except on Christmas. It is free to enter. You can get to the museum when touring Washington DC by boarding the Metro that runs through Red Line and alighting at Union Station. Get down from the train at Union Station and use its exit, which leads to Massachusetts Avenue, situated across the street from the museum. A better option is to take a circulator bus that runs along National Mall route, allowing you to visit attractions along the way.