May 9 Post Office Meeting
A meeting on May 9 at 5 PM at the Pie Town Community Center may decide the fate of Pie Town’s post office.
On April 27, the US Postal Service closed the Pie Town post office. Several reasons were given, including the building was unsafe, there is a problem with the lease, and repairs would not be made by the building owners. The USPS has put up cluster boxes and keys are being distributed, this is after the Catron Commission tabled permission to install such boxes. A lease has also been signed to provide temporary postal service at Bill Pennington’s building on the corner of Hwy 60 and 603. The USPS has not provided specifics of problems with either the lease or the building issues, and has said that the historical postal boxes cannot remain with Pie Town. This means Pie Town will lose one of its tourist attractions.
On May 9 at 5 PM a representative from the USPS will visit Pie Town. This meeting is important not just to residents of Pie Town but to ru- ral communities. Savethepostoffice.com reports the USPS has been “temporarily suspending” service in rural communities across the US. The communities get cluster boxes, but never get a post office back.
The Pie Town post office has been in service since 1927, has been at its current location since the 1940s and has the oldest post boxes in New Mexico—which are now due to be taken from Pie Town. Tourists buy post cards from local shops just to get the Pie Town postal stamp. The post office also serves hikers and bikers along the Continental Divide Trail who ship packages to General Delivery to resupply them on the hike.
Senators Heinrich and Udall and Representative Pearce sent a signed letter to the Post Master General to urge that Pie Town maintains a permanent post office in Pie Town. State Representative Gail Armstrong and County Commissioner Anita Hand have also been in communication with the USPS, and an article ran in the ABQ Journal on April 24.
Now it’s up to the May 9 meeting to show the USPS that rural residents want to keep— and need—full postal service and their historic post boxes. Everyone in Catron County can attend to ensure the USPS knows that rural postal service is vital to this area. ◊●◊
Former postmaster of Pie Town’s historic post office Lola Albin (left) and her mother, Billie Weathers, now deceased (right).