Five little zip code numbers may not seem like much, but to the people of Jonesville, Texas, it's what puts their community on the map. Literally. Now they may lose all of that, as the U.S. Postal Service considers shutting down the post office which has served this community since 1847.
Marty Vaughan's family has played a big part in the history of the community. Her aunt was worked for the postal service for 35 years. She says this is a disappointing blow to the people who live here. "It's a piece of history, but it's a history that's very important to the people that live here in this day and time."
In a letter to residents, the Postal Service says it's considering closing the post office because of "low demand." The nationally funded service faces an estimated $9 billion shortfall and cutting rural outposts is one method it's using to cut costs.
A community meeting in August gave residents a chance to voice their concerns. Since then, they've been writing letters to the Postal Service in hopes of keeping the post office where it's been for 164 years. Jeff Thompson, Precinct 1 Commissioner of Harrison County, is also voicing his support, saying the economic benefits are minimal and won't balance the negative impacts. "If they lose their zip code, you know, individuals that want to get on the Internet today and pull up a certain area or a certain community and they lose that, then they lose their identity."
The U.S. Postal Service is accepting letters and petitions concerning the Jonesville Post Office through October 24th. It's slated to make a final decision in November.