AMF Midway Postal Retirement Organization Archives
Scope and Contents
AMF Midway Postal Retirement Organization Archives include materials relating to the experience of Midway Airport’s AMF postal facility employees and the formation and history of AMF Midway Retirement Organization. The collection is organized into five series. The series are “AMF Midway Postal Retirement Organization Records,” “AMF Midway Postal Employee Records,” Memorabilia,” “Serials,” and “Photographs.” The collection spans the years 1957 to 2010, with undated materials. The collection will be of value to researchers interested in the history of African Americans in the postal service and transportation.
- 1957-2010, undated
- Horne, Albert. (Person)
Conditions Governing Access
Materials are open without restrictions
Conditions Governing Use
Please consult staff to determine ability to reuse materials from collection.
Biographical / Historical
The members of the AMF (Air Mail Field) Midway Postal Retirement Organization included the first African Americans allowed to work at Midway Airport’s AMF postal facility. They later worked on trains, distributing mail throughout the Midwest. The AMF Midway Postal Retirement Organization was founded in 1991 to document the history of African Americans in the organization.
AMF Midway Organization’s first meeting was a breakfast meeting at Burger King on April 29, 1989, though there had been discussion about starting such a group for about ten years before the group met. Marion Byrd and James Knox organized the meeting. In attendance were Harold Barnett, Marion Byrd, Edgar Kinney, James Knox, Charles Livingston, Albun Long, Macklin Martin, Frank Rias, and Ernie Reynolds. After a few additional Burger King meetings, members decided to host meetings at their homes. James Knox volunteered to host the first home meeting and Marion Byrd volunteered to host the second. During these meetings Marion Byrd was the Acting President and James Knox was the Acting Secretary.
After six home meetings, Edgar Martine secured permission for the club to meet at Foster Park Field house on a permanent basis. The first meeting at the field house was held March 23, 1991. Officers were elected and the group named the club AMF Midway (PTS) Organization at this meeting. PTS refers to the United States Post Office Department officially changing what had been the Railway Mail Service a more appropriate name—the Postal Transportation Service in 1949. Club officers included Marion Byrd as President and James Knox as Secretary. The organization’s by-laws were written and stated that all former clerks who were employed at any time at AMF Midway were eligible for membership. The organization was chartered by the state of Illinois on March 29, 1991. Edward Jackson established the group’s newsletter and the first issue was published September 1991. Jackson also created the airplane logo, and the birthday and anniversary column that became a staple in the newsletters. In April 1993 the club registered as an Illinois charitable organization.
AMF Midway (PTS) Organization had an active social committee that planned fundraisers and parties. The club’s first fundraiser on May 23, 1992 was a lotto chance raffle drawing with twenty-eight members in attendance. The first party was held on November 4, 1992. It was a dinner dance at the Martinique Restaurant for the members, their wives, and friends. The organization also made monetary donations to support local athletics; one donation was given to the Foster Park Small Fry Basketball team to help with team expenses.
5.25 Linear Feet (in 7 boxes)
Language of Materials
These workers were the first African Americans allowed to work at Midway Airport’s AMF postal facility. They later worked on trains, distributing mail throughout the Midwest. The AMF Midway Postal Retirement Organization was founded in 1991 to document the history of African Americans in the organization. The collection contains administrative records, newsletters, photographs, reports, diagrams and memorabilia.
Archive is arranged into 5 series
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Gift of Willie S. Black, President of AMF Midway Postal Retirement Organization
- AMF Midway Postal Retirement Organization -- : Archives.
- African American postal service employees -- Illinois -- Chicago. Subject Source: Library of Congress Subject Headings
- African American postal service employees. Subject Source: Fast
- Archives. Subject Source: Fast
- Illinois -- Chicago. Subject Source: Fast
- Newsletters. Subject Source: Fast
- Newsletters. Subject Source: Library of Congress Genre/Form Terms
- Photograph Subject Source: Medical Subject Headings
- Photographs. Subject Source: Library of Congress Genre/Form Terms
- Records (Documents) Subject Source: Fast
- United States Postal Service -- : Officials and employees, Retired.
- United States Postal Service
- personnel records. Subject Source: Art & Architecture Thesaurus
- photographs. Subject Source: Art & Architecture Thesaurus
- Horne, Albert. (Person)
- Knox, James. (Person)
- Black, Willie S. (donor., Person)
- Guide to AMF Midway Postal Retirement Organization Archives
- Processed by CLIR funded Black Metropolis Research Consortium “Color Curtain Processing Project.” By Beth Loch and Emily Minehart. May 8, 2013. By BMRC intern Ariella Brotherson, 2016 June 20
- July 2022
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
- Language of description
- Script of description
Part of the Vivian G. Harsh Research Collection Repository
Woodson Regional Library
Chicago Public Library
9525 S. Halsted Street
Chicago IL 60628 United States