Mail in our past
Mail by sailing ship
The first people to come and live in Australia had to wait about six months for a letter to arrive from England. It also took about six months for a letter written in Australia to reach England because mail was carried by sailing ships.
Australia's first postie
In 1809, to stop people racing on board the ships to grab their mail, the first postmaster was chosen. It was the postmaster's job to collect the mail from the ship and take it to his home. People had to pay him to get their mail.
Mail by men on horseback
In 1838 the first mail was delivered from Sydney to Melbourne by men on horseback. It took about two months for mail to travel between the two cities. Cobb & Co. carried the mail in their coaches until 1924.
Messages sent by telegraph
Mail by train
In 1883 mail began being carried by train between Sydney and Melbourne.