The History Of Courier Shipping 101

As the number of local courier service and delivery companies continues to increase, more and more businesses are beginning to rely solely on their services. Due to the rise in internet sales and growing eCommerce customer demands, courier companies, especially those able to handle rush delivery requests, will continue to see an influx in customers. Some may be new to courier services, but the nature of these businesses has been present in the United States for thousands of years. Contact your local courier here!

While Econo-Courier hasn’t been around for quite that long, we still think the history of the courier industry is a story worth telling.

Early Days

Running messengers are the first noted couriers dating back to 400 B.C. – within Greek, Native American, and South American cultures. These individuals would run letters and packages which included news, legal matters, warnings, and military orders to nearby tribes.

Eventually, runners became riders or post riders to deliver messages when horses became the primary mode of transportation. Post riders had prearranged meeting spots where they would meet other post riders to hand off the delivery of information from other regions. Over time, post riders created specific routes to use, adding post houses with inns, as exchange and rest locations for deliveries.

Post Service

The post service was officially introduced to the public in 17th century England, thanks to Charles I. Initially, wealthy families were the only ones to use this service as they were the only individuals that could afford postage rates. Unlike today, the recipient of the letter paid the postage charge instead of the sender.

In 1680, everything changed when William Dockwra and Robert Murray created the Penny Post in London. With the Penny Post, the one cent postage fee had to be prepaid. As time continued, the post service experienced numerous upgrades and utilized trains and ships to deliver letters and parcels to further distances. And eventually, across the sea to the United States.

Finally, in 1775, the United States Postal Service was launched as an independent agency of the Federal government.

Privatization of Couriers

Until 1852, all package and letter delivery went through the postal service. Wells Fargo established itself as an express delivery service and carried packages from door to door. Through time, the industry has become regulated and relies more and more on technology and software to manage deliveries efficiently.

Today, businesses use local courier service to deliver packages to customers in a timelier fashion than the traditional mail system. Unlike the traditional mail system, drivers can also pick up packages and return them to businesses. Couriers are well-trained to handle packages and deliveries with care, so business owners can focus their efforts on other crucial aspects of operations.

Econo-Courier has been a prominent courier company in the New York Metropolitan area for 45 years. Today, we are headquartered in New Jersey and assist many businesses with package deliveries, trucking services, and warehouse solutions. To learn more, contact our team today!