Lincoln Post Office
Historical Dates: 1874-today
Threat Level: Low
Location: Lincoln Road
The store filled in as a kind of town hall or Lyceum Hall. It had been constructed as a "Good Templars Hall" and had provided basketball and other recreation as an alternative to "spirits". Asa Moore Janney, Jr. purchased the building in 1928. Since he was a Justice of the Peace, it could double as a temporary courtroom at times. More often, it was a general store and meeting place. The potbelly stove was a focus for gathering. Mr. Janney sold notions and groceries—bread, tobacco, nails, shirts and work clothes. You can still see the "Sunbeam Bread" ad painted over on the screen door.
The Lincoln area was settled between 1733-1741 by Quakers, many who came from Pennsylvania in search of good farming land. The area became known as ‘Goose Creek’ when the Quakers formed the Goose Creek Society of Friends and began the Goose Creek Friends Monthly Meeting circa 1738. The village remained with that name (Goose Creek) until 1868 when it became known as Lincoln. Prior to 1865 residents of the Goose Creek Area customarily got their mail at Purcell’s store in what is now known as Purcellville.
The Goose Creek Meeting had several members who were strong abolitionists and nine members voted in support of Abraham Lincoln for President. The Goose Creek Friends petitioned congress for a post office and offered to name it after the President. Congress approved “the Lincoln Post Office at Goose Creek Village” and President Lincoln appointed Rodney Davis the first Postmaster in April 1861; however, the post office was not activated until sometime later (1865).
During this period post offices were located in the homes of the Post Master and the position was one of significant importance. All mail was picked up and delivered to the Post Master’s home; there was no rural or ‘home’ delivery.
Lincoln’s Post Masters:
Rodney Davis: July 3, 1865- March 1888
Franklin Myers: March 1888-June 1889
Charles G. Davis (Rodney’s son) : June 1889-Sept 1893
Franklin Myers (again): Sept 1893-Sept 1897
Charles G. Davis (again/son?): Sept 1897-March 1914
William F. Myers: Mar 1914-June 1918
William Nichols (store): June 1918-May1928 (Now 18197 Lincoln Rd)
Blondina Janney (Store): May 1928-Dec 1932 (Now 18186 Lincoln Rd)
Asa M. Janney (store): Dec 1932-Jan 1972.
(only one person offered the Postmaster position ever declined: Lawrence H. Taylor; April, 1918)
In June 1972, the Lincoln Post Office became a branch office under the administrative control of the Purcellville Post Office. Although Lincoln had no postmaster, postal service remained in operation with Arlene Janney and her son John as “postal clerks” until January of 1995 when the Janney store closed and all postal operations were assumed by the Purcellville Office.
Because the village believed that the Post Office was part of the heritage and history of Lincoln, the Lincoln Community League initiated an effort to have it reopened. In January of 1996 the new Lincoln Post Office was, with the help of Congressman Frank Wolf, opened as a contract Community Post Office in the old Nichol’s Store which is across the street from the present location. Amy Osowski was the manager and Anna Bettis the postal clerk (Anna had worked in Janney’s Store as a postal clerk since 1990.) In 1999, the postal operation moved back to the Janney Store at 18196 Lincoln Road, with Anna Bettis as Senior Postal Clerk.
Lincoln Community League holds the contract with the USPA and in accordance with L.C.L.’s contract , the operation is overseen by a five person committee of Lincoln Community League members.
(this history submitted by Phil Daley of the Lincoln Community League)
References and Links
18196 Lincoln Rd, Purcellville, VA 20132
540-338-9022. Open to the Public