Search Images Maps Play YouTube News Gmail Drive More »
Sign in
Screen reader users: click this link for accessible mode. Accessible mode has the same essential features but works better with your reader.


  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS884964 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateApr 14, 1908
Filing dateMar 25, 1907
Priority dateMar 25, 1907
Publication numberUS 884964 A, US 884964A, US-A-884964, US884964 A, US884964A
InventorsWilliam H Voss
Original AssigneeWilliam H Voss
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Mail-box signal.
US 884964 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
Next page
Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)


No. 884,964. PATENTED APR. 14, 1908. w. H. voss,



vvi b1 eases atto'www No. 884,964. PATENTED APR. 14-, 1908.

- W. H. VOSS.




Q/Vi tn use:


Specification of Letter- Patent.-

Eatented April 14, 1908.

Application filed larch 25, 1907. Serial No. 386,887.

To all whom it may concern:

Be it known that I, WILLIAM H. Voss, a citizen of the United States, residing at Poynette, in the county of Columbia, State of Wisconsin, have invented certain new'and useful Improvements in Mail-Box Signals; and I do hereby declare the following to be a full, clear, and exact description of the invention, such as will enable others skilled in the art to which it appertains to make and use the same.

This invention has relation to mail-boxes for rural free-delivery mail routes. 7

It is the object of the invention to provide improvements in mail-boxes of the class mentioned that will indicate to the carrier as to whether there is anything in the box for him to collect, and that will automatically set a signal, upon,the carrier putting mail matter in the box or taking any matter out to auto- ,matically lower the signal reviously set and raise a diiferent one to in icate that he has gone by and opened the box to do either one or both of the things mentioned.

The nature of the invention may be fully and clearly ascertained from the device portrayed in the annexed drawings, forming a part of this specification, in view of which it will first be fully described in detail with respect to this construction and mode of operation and then be pointed out with particularity in the subjoincd claims.

Of the said drawingsFigure 1 is a side elevation of a rural mail delivery box secured upon a supporting post and equipped with my improvements. Fig. 2 is a front view of the same, showing the staff carrying the round signal as down, while a staff carrying the square transverse slgnal is raised. Fig.

3 is a vertical sectional view in the lane 3 3,

Fig. 2. Fig. 4 is arear elevation. ig. 5isa plan. Figs. 6 and 7 are respectively separate views of the two staffs and their signals. Fig. 8 is a sectional view in the plane 88, Fig. 1, drawn to an enlarged sca e.

Similar figures of reference designate similar parts or features, as the case may be, wherever they occur.

In the drawings, 10 designates the post to which the letter-box 11 is secured. The

hinge point 14.

On top of the post 10 there may be a baseboard, 15, of suitable width and length provided at its rear end with an n right or standard, 16, upon the front of which is pivoted a flat staff 17 carrying at its upper or outer end a s uare s' a1 17, and upon the same side of t e uprig t 16, is a like staff 18, bearmg a round signal 1 8, the square signal being disposed transversel of the roadway and the round signal paralle with it...

20 designates a trip-rod that is supported horizonta y on the upper side of the baseboard 15 and hasits'forward end 20 turned u in the rear of the upper edge of the cover 0 the box, and its rear end extends through a hole 21, see Fig. 3, in the upright 16, where it is bent upward vertically, as at 22, the extremity being turned forward at a right angle to the said part 22 and parallel with the baseboard 15, so as to form, as it were, a pin, 23. A spring connected with the base-board or otherwise suitably arranged operates on the trip-rod to press it norma ly forward, so that the pin 23, will tend to be normally projected through the hole 25 of the upright 16.

The upright 16 is provided with a pin 26 upon which the respective staffs 17 and 18 are su ported, the said pin extending through the ho es 27 and 28 of said staffs respectively.

A spiral spring 29, supported on and attached to the base-plate 15 is connected at one end with the staff 17 and at the other end with the stafl 18 and operates with a tendency to raise the former and lower the latter.

Supposing both staffs to, be raised, and a(person opens the box, the rear end of the li will push back the tri -rod, which will carry the pin 26 back out o the holes 27 and 28 that held the staffs raised and the staff 17 and it signal 17 will through the sup ort of its spring remain upright, and this wi be the condition of things when the box lid is closed.

It being intended that the staff 18' shall be automatically raised to vertical position and the stafl 17' and its-signall7 automaticall lowered at each time that the lid of the box IS raised, the operation stated will take place I spectively of the staff.

When a letter is placed in the box the party mailing it wi manually lower the staff 18 and signal 18 by pushing back the trip-rod and releasing the said staff so that it may be put down. After the letter shall have been mailed the stafi' 17 carrying the squaresignal 17 will be raised to vertical position and the trip-rod released, when its pin 23 will enter the hole 28 of staff 18 and the hole 28 of the lowered staff 18 automat ically holding the former in vertical position and the latter in lowered position. This will indicate to the carrier that mail has been put into the box and is ready for him 'to take it up. When, now the carrier goes to the box in response to the signal 17 he opens the lid which pushes back the trip-rod and its pin 23 releasing the staff 17 and lowering the signal 17 while the stafl 18 and its signal 18 will be raised. Upon closin the box-lid the pin 23 of the trip-rod wi engage the hole 28 in the staff 18 and maintain the latter in vertical position while the stafl 17' will be lowered. The si nal 18 inally raised and the stall 18 will be kept down;

it being understood that the signal 17 which extends transversely of the roadway where the box is placed is raised for the attention of the carrier and that the si nal 18 which extends parallel with the roa way is raised for the attention of the patrons indicating that there is mailmatter in the box that may be taken out or that the carrier has passed. With both the signals down there IS indicated to the carrier that there is nothing in the box, and he goes by without examining the same.

It is further the design of the invention that the signal 18 shall be raised automatically when the carrier examines the box or opens the lid for any purpose and that the signal 17 shall go down automatically through the operation of the lid of the box.

What is claimed is:

l. A mail-box comprising two signal devices, a spring connected with one signal to raise it and a spring connected with the other signal to lower it, combined with the boxli and means intermediate of the same and the signals to hold them in raised position and to release them upon the opening of the lid to allow the springs to act thereon.

2. A mail-box comprising two signaling devices, a standard for each signal, an upright u on which the staffs are ivoted, a tri -r0 having a pin, each stafi' eing provi ed with a hole to be engaged by said pin and a s ring engaging each upright and acting to e ress one and lower the other, combined wit the box-lid adapted when opened to engage the trip-rod to release the stalls.

3. A mail-box comprising two signaling devices, a spring connected with each and acting to raise one and lower the other, a tri -rod adapted to engage the signals in ho d them 1n raised position, and to be moved to release them to allow one to be automatically lowered and the other remain in osition, or to allow both to be lowered.

n testimony whereof, I aflix my signature, in presence of two witnesses.



Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2551915 *Jan 16, 1948May 8, 1951Turner Carl MMail deposit carrier actuated signaling flag
US2573879 *Mar 14, 1949Nov 6, 1951Seibel William EDelivery box signal
US2594885 *Mar 21, 1949Apr 29, 1952George V DueIrrigation signal
US2670897 *Feb 28, 1952Mar 2, 1954Gagnon Henry JMailbox signal
US3013715 *Jun 10, 1960Dec 19, 1961Lester FerenciMailbox signal
US3072322 *Feb 23, 1961Jan 8, 1963Meter James Adams VanMailbox indicator
US3261321 *Feb 1, 1965Jul 19, 1966Otto MandlParking device
US3523639 *Aug 2, 1968Aug 11, 1970Wiebe WalterDoor triggered service indicator for rural type mailbox
US3958752 *Jan 27, 1975May 25, 1976Pieszchala Chester ASignal device for use in conjunction with a mailbox, newspaper tube, lock box or similar device
US4596204 *Apr 1, 1985Jun 24, 1986T. D. Williamson, Inc.Flag-type pig-sig
Cooperative ClassificationA47G29/121