And if that still doesn’t work you can threaten to mail them somewhere. And you could have made good on that threat up until June 13, 1920.
When parcel post first became available to Americans in 1913, we loved everything about it. Sending and receiving packages through the mail took the country by storm. We shipped and received live chickens, tobacco, and other items affordably and reliably. However, in some cases, children fell into the category of other items.
While it was frowned upon, families who did not wish to pay the price of a train ticket could ship their tyke to their grandparents house, for example, for the cost of shipping a chicken- about 53 cents for a 50lb bird.
In one instance, in Indiana, a postal carrier picked up a box that read “Live Infant” and was addressed to the baby’s father, who was divorced from it’s mother and lived across the state. Postage? 17 cents. Expression on the father’s face when he opened the box? Priceless.
This practice continued throughout the early twentieth century until the United States Post Office declared it would no longer accept children in the mail.