The History of the Post Office

The History of the Post Office

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Excerpt: ...thus: "We shall find ourselves compelled, if the present weight of Parliamentary and 251 official duties shall make it impossible for your Lordships to give us the authority we request in the course of a week, to take it upon ourselves to issue the money at our own risk, or the persons who are the object of this relief will be unable to attend their duty, and the business of the office will be literally at a stand." Whatever Pitt may have thought of the somewhat unusual terms of this address, he allowed no sign of dissatisfaction to escape him, and the authority sought was given. As long as Walsingham confined his attention to the packets and the clerks of the roads, there was no danger of a collision with Palmer. Palmer, on the contrary, offered his congratulations to Walsingham on the improvement which he had been instrumental in making in these officers' condition. It was when Walsingham gave an instruction which even indirectly affected the inland posts that Palmer's jealousy was aroused. This he regarded as his own peculiar domain, a domain upon which even the postmasters-general themselves were trespassers; and a trespass or what he considered as such he never lost an opportunity of resenting. The earliest and not the least curious illustration of these pretensions appears in the case of the King's coach. In the summer of 1788 the King repaired to Cheltenham for the purpose of drinking the waters, and Walsingham, who was above all things a courtier, had arranged that during the royal visit a mail-coach should be stationed at that town for the exclusive use of His Majesty. The coach was to be a new one, sent down from London for the occasion, and the leading contractor on the Cheltenham road, one Wilson by name, was to provide the horses. The royal visit at an end, the contractor's bill was sent in, and Palmer, in forwarding it to Walsingham, professed to be extremely dissatisfied with the magnitude of the charge. On the sale of the horses and...show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 168 pages
  • 189 x 246 x 9mm | 313g
  • Rarebooksclub.com
  • United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 1236718356
  • 9781236718358