Interesting Facts

 

Federal historical records show that San Benito Post office was a second class post office as early as 1913 and became a first class post office on July 1, 1945.

City delivery began in 1925 with two city routes. today we have seven city routes and one auxiliary route plus parcel post and five rural routes with two auxiliary routes. The area covered includes Los Indios, Blue Town, Arroyo City, Lozano and Rio Hondo.

 

 

 

The fort-like home built one block to the north of the post office on North Sam Houston, now Jeff Jackson Law Firm, was built by Colonel Sam Robertson. He was an engineer and laid out the streets of San Benito. His home was built like a fort to protect his family from the bandits of that time.

The post office served as the headquarters and meeting place for the entire community. The development of the community centered around the post office and provided a continuity of life in the community.

During the period of building the post office, 1931-33, the country was in the middle of the great depression. The post office was dedicated on Saturday, April 15 and was opened for business on Easter Sunday, April 16, 1933.

Elisha Daughtrey, a long-time postal employee related some of his memories of this period. When architectural plans were sent down here with a building designed with a basement, Chauncey Milner, who was assistant post master at that time, questioned the advisability of a basement in this part of the country. He asked Ralph Agar and Bruce Gentry to compose a letter to that effect and to question the advisability of the basement. Supposedly, the response from the government was it know what it was doing. It had built many post offices all over the country and it knew what it was doing. The building was dedicated on Easter weekend, 1933 and on Labor Day, the disastrous Hurricane of 1933 struck this area and the basement filled to a depth of four feet of water.

When the hurricane was eminent, Postmaster Floyd Worth ordered Elisha Daughtrey to stay at the post office during the hurricane because Mr. Worth's mother was ill and he was needed at home. Mr. Daughtrey countered with he was needed at home with his wife and children, also and that if he stayed his family would have to come there. Postmaster Worth said this was against policy. The story goes that not only Mr. Daughtrey's family stayed there but several other postal employee families plus other citizens stayed there for protection from the Hurricane of 1933. Persons staying there were put to wok bailing out the water accumulating in the basement.

Roswell Bohner, Jr., whose father was a longtime postal employee, stated he remembered a story that the roof construction was such that it would melt snow.

These two stories seem to support the idea that the design was originally to be used in New England. The alleged design of the San Benito Post Office with porches and more open construction suitable to South Texas was sent to New England.

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