The Appalachian Trail

The Postmark Adventures of Kelvin Kindahl, Part 9

June 1 -- Stopped at a few post offices to fill in a little blank area in western Orange County, N.Y. Also drove out to Millrift, Pa. Millrift is on the Delaware River, five miles upstream from Matamoras and Port Jervis, N.Y. There is no bridge there and the road doesn't go any further upstream. It isn't really a dead-end road, but it's not a through-route either.

Millrift is a five-mile detour from any through-routes, so Sunday seemed like a good time to go. It would be the last Pennsylvania office for me on this trip.

There was some construction on two different railroad bridges in town, and apparently they sometimes have to close the road to do the work. The post office had two sets of hours posted -- one for when the road is open and slightly different afternoon hours when the road is closed.


June 3 -- Began the morning at Bear Mountain, N.Y., and Fort Montgomery. Bear Mountain is in the back of a state park maintenance building and serves mainly people connected to, or visiting, the state park or the Bear Mountain Inn.

From there I went to Highland Falls, the town outside the West Point U.S. Military Academy. It is the main West Point post office. Looking at the map, I had thought the main West Point office was in the town of West Point, and the USCC Sx would be at the Academy. In fact, there is no town of West Point at all. What looks like a town on the map is all part of the Academy.

The West Point post office is the main office, and the one that serves the public and civilian staff. USCC Sx is strictly for the cadets, and isn't accessible to the general public. I might have been able to get to it, but I couldn't park anywhere near it, and I didn't want to walk a long way in the rain when I probably wouldn't be allowed inside anyway.

There is apparently another station on the USMA grounds that I knew nothing about. There is a U.S. Mint at West Point where they mint gold coins. Distribution of the coins is done by registered mail, and supposedly they have a station there to handle that. The clerk at the main office told me that USCC station had its own postmark (which it does) but that the station at the mint would not.

I will have to write and find out if it does, or even if it is an actual station. I did find the route to the mint, but not surprisingly it was behind a huge barbed wire fence. I did not ask to be let in. Talking my way into a gold coin mint might be just about impossible.


June 3 - When West Point helped me complete Orange County for me as best as I could, I crossed the Hudson to Westchester County, and went to a bunch of suburbs in the northern part of Westchester.

Scarborough station of Briarcliff Manor is located in the train station. I've found this before in a number of smaller, older train suburbs of New York and Philadelphia. The train station is the center of the town, and probably has some extra room.

Maryknoll, N.Y., is located on the grounds of the Catholic Foreign Missionary Society of America. It was one of a bunch of Westchester post offices today with no decent postmark at all. Both their four-bar and round dater were worn out beyond legibility.

At both Briarcliff Manor and Baldwin Place there were two or three different postmarks thoroughly worn out. I heard the line "We've got new ones on order" and "we really should get some new ones" far too many times in the past few days.

June 4 -- Began the day in North Tarrytown, N.Y. I remember reading a few years ago that it had officially changed its name to Sleepy Hollow, as in "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow," which author Washington Irving wrote there. The post office has finally caught up. N. Tarrytown -- Bx Tarrytown - has changed its name to Sleepy Hollow, Bx Tarrytown. The sign on the building still says N. Tarrytown, but the postmark is now Sleepy Hollow. When I asked the clerk when the change occurred, he grunted "dunno." A clerk at the main office told me it was March 1997.

Across the Hudson, I went to Nyack College, where Station No. 1 was the only post office left in Rockland County that I hadn't visited.

On my way back from visiting the Unionville post office, I stopped at the Stewart Airport Bx of Newburgh. Stewart Airport is the name of the window section of the Mid Hudson General Mail Facility P&DF. The clerk told me part of the deal when USPS bought the land was that there had to be a retail post office there. Whether that is true or not, I don't know. However, there had been a retail post office at Stewart Airport before the P&DF was moved there.