Historic Post Offices That Existed in the Bethel/Cruso Area

Forks of Pigeon Post Office was in Colonel Joseph Cathey's Store (also called Cathey's Store Post Office).  Postage for a letter was five cents. Colonel Cathey charged an additional three cent fee for writing the letter. This post office was eventually moved and operated out of the Blaylock home near Silver Bluff in Bethel.

Dates of Operation: 1841-1901.  During the Civil War era (approximately 1861-1867) Forks of Pigeon operated as a CSA post office.  It reopened as a regular post office in 1867        

Postmasters/Postmistresses with dates of appointment:

William Cathey (September 23, 1841)                              

Joseph Cathey (April 7, 1852)

Armand Ermintia S. Deaver (January 9, 1867)

Mary C. Evans (February 26, 1867)

William S. Evans (August 19, 1869)

James A. Blalock was the last postmaster (     -1901).

Envelope from an 1846 letter from Thomas Isaac Lenoir to his sister Sarah at Fort Defiance, NC.  with Forks of Pigeon on the label.

-from the Carroll Jones Collection

Garden Creek Post Office was operated on the Osborne Farm in the vicinity of today's Crestview Baptist Church on Highway #110.  The Osborne family ran one of the finest dairy farms in the state into the twentieth century on the Osborne Farm, and the post office was operated by the family on the farm in the later quarter of the 19th Century and two years into the 20th Century.   Available historical documentation lists Arthur and sisters Mary Louisa and Florence Osborne in charge of operations at the Osborne Dairy Farm, though other family members may have been involved with the post office operation also.

Dates of Operation: 1878-1901

Postmasters/Postmistresses with dates of appointment:

Adoninamy Judson (sometimes listed

as Adoninamy Osborne or as J. Osborne) (April 8, 1878)

Other members of the Osborne family

The Reverend James Anderson Inman built the Lavinia Post Office near his home just off McClure's Creek Road. Later the operation moved to the home of Joseph and Susan Inman near McClure's Creek.  Their son Lon walked approximately twelve miles to Waynesville twice a week to bring the mail to the post office.  James Ballou Inman contracted to carry the mail three times a week from Waynesville to Livingston, Sonoma, Retreat, and Lavinia Post Offices.  He earned $112 per year.

Dates of Operation: 1886-1913.  Operations moved to Sunburst after 1913.     

Postmasters/Postmistresses:

Charlotte L. Penland (November 22, 1886)

Joseph W. Singleton (April 1, 1891)

Minnie Franklin

Joseph Pingree Inman (1893-1913)

Susan Franklin Inman (acting postmistress) (1893-1913)

Mail Carriers to the post office with dates of operation:

Lon Inman

James Ballou Inman (May 1896-1900)

Mr. M.J. Boyd

James Inman     

Little East Fork Post Office was primarily a horseback delivery arrangement.

Dates of Operation: Unknown

Postmasters/Postmistresses:

Holden G. Warren was the mail carrier

Cruso Post Office

Forks of Pigeon Post Office

Garden Creek Post Office

Lavinia Post Office

Little East Fork Post Office

Lavinia Post Office

-from the Cheryl Haney collection

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Cruso Post Office existed in a variety of locations through its five decades of operation.  The area that would become known as Cruso was served by Springdale and other small post offices. Post office locations moved as new postmasters were appointed.  The first Cruso Post Office was on Cold Creek Road, then near Tom J. Reece's farm near Pisgah Creek, later across the Creek from the Free Will Baptist Church, then to Lucy Poston's and Oder Burnette's. The last location recorded was in the Ira Cogburn Store near today's East Fork Baptist Church and the Cruso Fire Department.  Eva Pless Fulbright Cogburn Fish and family operated the store.  The Jack Delmar Fulbright family briefly lived in the back of the store that also served as a post office until 1942.

Dates of Operation: 1890-January 30,1942. After 1942, delivery moved to the Canton Post Office.

Postmasters/Postmistresses with dates of appointment:

US postal archives lists a total of 16 postmasters for this area, though our available documentation lists only 12.

James R. Trull (May 2, 1890)

William J. Trull (June 10, 1890)

Thomas N. Massie (January 3, 1901)

William W. Pless (September 10,1904)

James N. Osborne (January 31, 1914)

Thomas J. Reece (September 30, 1919)

Ira H. Cogburn (November 10, 1925)

Roy L. Pless (January 4, 1937)

The Reverend Oder F. Burnett (March 26, 1937)

Frank D. Grogan (March 18,1938)

Arnold Poston (August 16, 1938)

Jacob Arnold Poston (January 14, 1939)      

1927 Photo provided by Diana Fulbright Berg

Diana Fulbright Berg and Eva Pless Fulbright Cogburn standing in front of the Cruso Post Office.  (1980s Photo provided by Diana Fulbright Berg)