Woking Post Office 1932 - 1982

Contributed to the Central Peace Signal by Betty Coone.

The first Woking Post Office was put in operation on the 7th of June, 1932. It was located one half mile north of our present town site. The first postmaster was W. Hague. The post office was operated by their daughter, Lily, as she and I were good friends.

I had my first lesson on the inside in 1932. In 1938, the store and post office were moved to the west end of our present town site where they remained in operation till the fall of 1944. It was then sold and taken over by folks named Widdows.

They only stayed for one year, and in the fall of 1945, it was sold to Ace Coone, who was postmaster, with Frank Coone, his son operating it.

The spring of 1946, Hugh and Lucille Thorton (Hugh, my brother) took over and it was moved to its present location. It was first in the front of their house. In 1948, the little post office was built. Hugh and Lucille operated it till the first of April 1952. At that time Frank Coone was appointed postmaster, who remained as such till he retired on December 9, 1970. It was then turned over to me, but Frank operated it till December 1974, when his health failed and a stroke followed. Now it was my turn to go to work.

It was a big job to learn by myself, but the help of Helga Kristensen and a real swell Zone Postmaster, R.R. Hemmingway, I made it.  I must say, it has been very interesting and I have met some very lovely people. (also a few stinkers)

July 1975 I knew I could not manage without a kitchen, so with the help of Art Prowd and my family, we built a little room on the back of the post office which made my time there much more pleasant and convenient: with a hot plate, coffee pot, television and an easy chair. It was my little home away from home. I could also have visitors in, and I have had many.

By this time, I could see that I needed some help. In 1976, Marjorie Pettit started as my assistant. She has helped me in more ways than one. She has promised to stay as my right-hand helper till I retire in 1982. “Thanks, Marj.”

The first mail strike took place in 1975 and lasted 42 days. In 1977, they tried again, but it was short lived. Now, on the 6th of July 1981, another strike, which lasted 42 days, and another week before the mail got rolling properly, which as far as I can see proved nothing, except confusion.

While the strike was taking place my little back room at the post office got named ‘the Senior Citizen Center.’

The first of May 1966, a rural route to the west was started, with Fred Hess as currier. He only worked at it for five months. It was then taken over by Eileen Nagel.

In the spring of 1969, the rural route was extended to the east of town, currier Eileen Nagel, who is still doing a good job.

The high light of my post office career was December 1977, when I got a phone call (at 5 o’clock in the morning) from Woking, England, to exchange Christmas greetings and notes. I talked to the postmaster general, Mayor Albeny and two news reporters. One was Jane Pearce, editor of the Woking Times. This developed into correspondence acquaintance with an exchange of mementoes.

December of 1979, I received another phone call from Woking, England. Greetings from the Mayor and Jane Pearce. With an invitation to visit them and be their guest, which I accepted and plan on going April of 1982, as I retire March 1982.

April of 1982 will mark 30 years for Frank and I in the post office. We have seen it through the horse and wagon days, tractors, cars, trucks and motor bikes.

From the Archives of the Central Peace Signal


Thank You To The Central Peace Signal

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The Central Peace Signal has been publishing since 1977, covering northern Alberta’s Central Peace region. They have kindly agreed to share stories about the areas of the County from their archives.