Boulder City Magazine is a monthly publication full of information about Boulder City and Southern Nevada. Boulder City Magazine features the Boulder City Home Guide, a real estate guide to Boulder City and Southern Nevada.

Boulder City History
by Shirl Naegle, Manager
Boulder City/Hoover Dam Museum

Boulder City's First Post Office
April 15 is a day most of us have burned into our consciousness as a day to remember. It is indeed the day in 1931 that James L. Finney opened the first post office in Boulder City. Mr. Finney described this structure in the following way: “If it hadn’t been for the heavy safe holding it down, Boulder City’s first post office would have blown away.”

The 16’ x 20’ building ably described by Finney was located near Boulder City’s first airport and the U.S. Marshal, Claude Williams’, similarly ramshackle structure. Neither building was much more than a pine shanty, built in a hurry for a make-do structure until something else could be arranged or the need went away.

When James Finney and his assistant Gordon Barkley opened the fourth-class post office, they had only $250 worth of stamps and no canceling machine. The growing operation was upgraded to a third-class facility on July 1, 1931 and moved to the Boulder City Company office, which was located near the Frank Crowe Park. On March 1, 1932 the Boulder City post office would move again, this time into the south wing of the new municipal building at the corner of Arizona Street and California Street, along with the city clerk, manager, engineer, and U.S. Marshal.

Communication during the construction of the dam relied heavily upon the U.S. postal service. Though one could get national news from the paper, radio, or film reels, communication of a personal nature was accomplished mostly by mail. This was especially true in the construction town of Boulder City were phone service was limited and workers had come from all parts of the country, leaving family and friends back home.

Keeping in touch was not the only service Boulder City residents relied on the post office for. Since there were no banks, Boulder City workers used the Postal Savings Bank to deposit their savings. When the post office moved into the municipal building its reported business averaged about $15,000 a month in stamps, $25,000 a month in postal savings and $45,000 a month in postal orders. The post office would remain at the municipal building for 26 years until it moved next door on April 11, 1958. The fifth and present post office was dedicated August 12, 1991.

On behalf of the Boulder City Museum and Historical Association.

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