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Government Provides Xmas Boxes Renville Star Farmer October 31 1918

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Specially Constructed Boxes For Soldiers Overseas Furnished. Must Be Mailed Not Later Than Nov. 20

Relatives of the soldiers and sailors overseas will receive labels containing the name of that soldier or sailor. These labels should be turned over immediately to the postmaster who will hand you an empty box provided by the government size 3x4x9 inches. The person receiving the box may fill it with a combination of articles which will fit in it and which are not barred by the Post Office department.

You should then fill it according to directions printed below and return to Red Cross headquarters at the Club Rooms.

Inspectors of said boxes will be there on the afternoons of November 15th, 16th and 17th from 2:00 until 5:00 P.M.

Please remember the days and hours and help to make all work smoothly for a happier Christmas for the over-sea men in our service.

Study carefully the directions and plans printed elsewhere in this issue.

Boxes must not weigh over 3 pounds, Secretary of The Renville Branch of The American Red Cross.

Information For Red Cross Chapters

  1. The families of men in service abroad have been longing for some means of making Christmas overseas as merry a one as the conditions permit. Sensing this desire, the War Department has decided that each man may receive from his family a Christmas package of standard size and approximately standard contents.
  2. An arrangement has been completed between the War Department, Post Office Department and the American Red Cross, whereby the latter has undertaken to cooperate in the preparation for mailing of these Christmas parcels. To simplify the execution of this, plan a large number of specially manufactured cardboard cartoon have been purchase which will be distributed through the Chapters to the relatives and friends of men service overseas.

General Description of the Plan

  • The amount of shipping space which has been set aside for the transportation of Christmas parcels will permit the sending of but one parcel to each man. To avoid any duplication, and to make sure that each parcel will be correctly addressed, a Christmas Parcel label is now being issued to the men abroad.
  • Men will be instructed to mail this label home to some relative or friend, who, upon receiving it, will apply to the nearest Chapter, Branch of Auxiliary headquarters, or such other places as may be designated by the Red Cross, where, upon presentation of the Christmas Parcel label, they will receive one carton, 3x4x9 inches in size.
  • The person receiving a carton may fill it with any combination of articles which will fit in it and which are not barred by the Post Office Department. When completely packed and ready to be mailed, the weight of the carton must not exceed three pounds.
  • A parcel ready for shipment will then be presented at places designated, where Red Cross representatives will examine the contents in order to:
    • Exclude any articles barred by the Post Office Department from Christmas parcels.
    • Remove any notes or messages found among the contents.
    • Wrap, tie and weigh the parcel.
    • Place on the Christmas Parcel Label received from abroad bearing the address of the man for who it is intended. The person sending the parcel shall then, in the presence of a Red Cross representative, affix stamps sufficient to carry it to Hoboken, N.J. The postage charges for Christmas packages shall be at the rat of fourth class or parcel post zone rate.
    • The Red Cross Inspection label certifying as to the complete inspection of the parcel by the Red Cross shall then be placed on the parcel.
    • Parcels ready for mailing shall remain in the custody of the Red Cross until delivered by its representatives to the Post office authorities.

No Christmas Parcels can be mailed later than November 20, 1918.

Articles Barred By Post office Regulations

            The following is a list of the principal classes of articles which are un-mailable:

  1. All spirituous, vinous, malted, fermented or other intoxicating liquors.
  2. All kinds of poison and all articles and compositions containing poison.
  3. Explosives of all kinds
  4. Inflammable materials, including friction matches.
  5. Infernal machines and mechanical, chemical or other devices or compositions which may ignite or explode.

Note-Under this classification would come cigarette lighters, etc.

  • Liquids or liquefiable articles, fragile articles and other admissible matter when not packed in accordance with the requirements of the Postal Laws and regulations.
  • All articles which may kill, or in any wise hurt, harm, or injure another, or damage or deface or otherwise injure the mails or other property.

Bear These Facts in Mind When Packing Your Christmas Parcel

  • Nothing should go in a Christmas Parcel which will not keep fresh from the time of packing until Christmas.
  • Dried fruits and other food products should be packed in small tin or wooden boxes, one-quarter to one-half pound size.
  • Hard candy, including chocolate, would probably be safe in tin foil or heavy cardboard, but no soft chocolates not anything that could possibly be crushed should be used, as the remaining contents of the package might be spoiled thereby.
  • Several dainties packed in oblong in boxes holding will provide a better variety for a packet than a larger quantity of single confection.
  • No liquids nor articles packed in glass should be placed in the package.
  • For wrapping the gifts, use a khaki-colored handkerchief, twenty-seven inches square.