" GATESVILLE, Oct. 4th. MESSES. MUNN Co.—Please continue the Scientific American to my former address. Enclosed find $2 in payment. Yours, SAML. IVES." We publish the above letter for the purpose of directing attention to one of the most serious annoyances experienced by newspaper publishers, viz., the want of proper directions for mailing papers. Sam'l Ives has no doubt been a subscriber, but not at Gatesville, and as no such place appears on any of our books, therefore the conclusion is inevitable that Mr. Ives has never received his paper at that office,—indeed we never before heard of such a place, and could never find it by the aid of Mr. Ives' letter. Gatesville may be in Maine, North Carolina, Missouri, Texas, or any other of the thirty-one States, and, for aught we know to the contrary,, a ville bearing this name may be found in every State in the Union. We spent an hour in looking for Mr. Ives' name in hopes of discovering his whereabouts, and, after finding three of the same name, we are obliged to wait another letter from him, in which.he may slightly hint at our rascality, because we take his money without sending the paper in return. We have many times been so confronted by correspondents, where the fault was entirely their own. Whenever any person sends for a newspaper, great care should be taken to specify the address to which the paper is to be mailed. Write your names, with town, county, and State, in a clear legible hand. If you cannot write plainly, print the address in Roman letters, with a pen; this will always give satisfaction, and insure correctness in mailing. Sometimes we candecypher the address from the postmark, but this is not always to be regarded because we have had many letters mailed from offices at a distance from the writer's residence. We remember one from a gentleman who, we have since learned, resided in South Carolina. This letter was dated at one place, mailed at another, and contained a postscript requesting his paper to be sent to another place, and in neither instance was the State indicated. This, we repeat, is a great annoyance, not only to the publisher but also to the correspondent.
This article was originally published with the title "To All Whom it may Concern" in Scientific American 8, 6, 45 (October 1852)