You've Got Mail
You’ve Got Mail
When was the last time you wrote a letter? When was the last time you received one, handwritten with feeling and slipped through the mail slot in your front door, or in the more and more frequently empty mailbox outside your house? A great deal of the mail most of us receive today is electronic, and a great deal of that is spam, or thrown straight into our computer trash bins. These days, sending a message to someone on the other side of the world can be done with a mere click, and it's hard to imagine a time when a message from a loved one could take two years to arrive. During the 17th and 18th centuries, the mail system was slow and haphazard - but also fascinating. Thanks to a trove of centuries-old Dutch letters found in the UK, we can see how it operated, and hear the stories of ordinary people reaching out to each other across a wide expanse of time and space.
Produced for ABC Radio National's feature documentary program Earshot.