Its historic character undimmed, the Lewes Post Office still delivers a timeless sense of pride — and belonging

By Chris Beakey  |  Photograph by Carolyn Watson
From the June 2017 issue

postofficeIf you’ve ever wanted to slip back 100 years or so into Lewes history, the post office on Front Street is a good place to start. Virtually unchanged since 1915, its lobby is an airy space with tiger-striped oak woodwork, dentil moldings, and a frosted glass door to the postmaster’s office. In contrast to utilitarian post offices typically found in modern suburbs, this relic of the past is a warm and welcoming place that invites you to linger even after you’ve picked up your mail.

And then there’s that stairway off to the right, with its gracefully turned balustrade, leading to rooms you can’t quite see beyond the second-floor landing ...

Although visitors may wonder about those mysterious second-story spaces, any reveries are cut short when they’re invited — typically after a short wait — to the counter, where the staff stands ready from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays, and on Saturdays until 12:30 p.m.

“I’ve made so many trips to that post office over the past 16 years, and am always astounded by the efficiency and friendliness of the place,” says Lewes resident Al Salas. He’s even more impressed by “the lengths they went to when we moved to our new house.”

That new house is adjacent to the boatyard on the Lewes-and-Rehoboth Canal, one of many new developments near the town’s core. The clerks were just barely familiar with the postal arrangements for the new neighborhood on the day Salas moved in, yet they were happy to take extra steps to ensure that his mail would be delivered on time.

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