When I first started Forgotten NY in 1998, there were still a number of small slotted mailboxes, mounted on telephone poles or on their own pebbled concrete posts. Every one of them has now disappeared, replaced by the large, bulky blue mailboxes. I found a corner in Forest Hills Gardens on Ascan Avenue and Greenway South on which the remnant of one can be seen alongside the “new” model.


Not only did the pebbled concrete post hold a small mailbox, the date of installation, 1938, is stamped onto the side of the post! Though there are still a few dozen of these concrete posts around NYC, only some have the date.


In addition, most of the big blue boxes also have the date of manufacturer–in this case, 1955–as well as the manufacturer itself, embossed near the bottom of the receptacle. Thus, this corner in Forest Hills Gardens has a short history of NYC mailboxes right there for anyone who’s curious.

Sorry about the blurry shot; a tight zoom like this requires a tripod and I don’t want to haul one around.

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3 Responses to HISTORY OF NYC MAILBOXES, Forest Hills

  1. Ellen says:

    I have a picture of one of the old boxes on the concrete pebbled post… buried someplace in my closet. If I do come across it I will send it in to you. The mailbox was in Forest Hills, on Continental avenue. I remember taking the photo about 50 yrs ago.

  2. Michael Schwenk says:

    King of NYC Mailboxes!!

  3. Larry says:

    I lived in Flatbush growing up and our Rogers Ave corner had never had a mailbox. ….Then one day in the 40’s after WW 2 ended, they put one of the slotted mailboxes in on a pebbled post…These mail boxes were intended for Letters only and it said so by the slot…However every once in a while, someone tried to stick a thick envelope in and it got stuck so the Post Office had to send a repair person to clear it…

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