Welcome to Tuesday Politicados! In retrospect it was probably not smart to write up a Labor Day post for the day after Labor Day. It was covered well on the actual day so here I am needing to come up with something else. With our
courageous competent compassionate crappy Postmaster currently staring down the barrel of yet another Trump betrayal and the USPS still staring down the barrel of ham-handed efforts to undermine a basic function of our society (It’s in the Constitution people!) I thought we might just highlight one of the stories of the USPS: Mary Fields aka Stagecoach Mary.
Mary Fields was born into slavery in 1832 in Tennessee. Through a series of events she ended up a freed person in Montana in 1884 (then just a territory) caring for Mother Mary Amadeus who was running a school for Native American girls, but who had come down with pneumonia. Mother Mary Amadeus recovered and Ms. Fields stayed at the mission until ~1894. During that time she established herself as fearless, with stories of her fighting off wolf packs and blizzards alike. She may have spent the rest of her life there, but for the fact that she wasn’t one to fuck around with. The details are lost to history but eventually she apparently got into a gun-duel with one of the hired hands. All we know for sure is she was still walking around afterwards. However she ended up getting kicked out because of this incident.
So at the age of 60 (!!!) she applied to run the mail routes in the back trails of Montana. For 8 more years she was undeterred by thieves, wolves, and snowfall. Stories tell that when the snow was too thick for her horses she would strap on snowshoes and walk miles to deliver the mail. Talk about living up to the USPS motto!
Supposedly in her “retirement” she was a beloved figure in Cascade, MT. I hope this is true. Apparently she was an avid fan of the new-fangled sport of base-ball. She is said to have presented the town’s team with bouquets of flowers from a garden she tended to with the same focus she brought to her mail routes. At the end of her days it was said the schools shut down in her honor.
This all connects back to Labor Day I promise! There are a series of workers in our country that function as essential lifeblood. Among them are our postal workers. Perhaps never before since Costner’s eponymous film have we appreciated this includes at the very top our postal service. Thank you to all who labor for the creation of a more perfect union. Thank you to all who labor in service of the pursuit of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Thank you to all who labor.
Also fuck Donald Trump.
Don’t step on the flowers. Smoke em if you got em.