Peter T. Daniels
2018-09-13 21:18:01 UTC
A long and rather unpleasant article in the September 2018 *American Philatelist*
on vermin that can damage mail in transit (a follow-up to one several years ago
that I haven't seen, which dealt with rats and mice and such) has near the
beginning some contemporary examples:
"Two [envelopes] eaten by snails in the mail [Figure 5]. One was sent in
August 1989 from Wales with a bright red official Post Office seal applied in
London stating, 'Eaten By Snails in Letter Box.'* The other [envelope] sent
locally in London shows that the stamp has been completely eaten off with
a 'Repair Duty/Royal Mail Norwich'** postmarked September 1.*** A large red
straight-line**** marking stating 'Damaged By Snails' has been applied. Snail
infestation is most common in the spring and midsummer seasons."
*Handwritten on a label that leaves room for the specific circumstances to be
**The letter is addressed to Norwich..
***The postmark clearly includes 2001.
****The word "rubber-stamp" or similar has been omitted from the text.
Really?? Are cartavorous, or chartiphagous, gastropods really so common that
it made sense to have a rubber-stamp made up to cover the exigency?