[Scriptoris] Address Etiquette

prudencecurious at netscape.net prudencecurious at netscape.net
Thu Nov 22 06:44:10 PST 2007

Dear Mistress Hillary,


I used to work for the post office, so here is some information that may be of help:


1) Remember that 85% of all mail is sorted by machine.

2) The machines read the mail from the bottom of the envelope to the top. The information is assumed at the bottom line to be the least detail and work get more specific each line up. (ie, country – state – city – address – apartment – individual in the apartment)

3) The fancier the script the less likely the machine is able to read the writing. Calligraphy and/or cursive are worst options; humans have problems with them. Best is capital block letters from a typewriter or computer.

4) Water soluable inks may run if exposed to water; avoid inkjets and pens with ink that run for addressing the outside envelope.

5) Avoid putting any additional notes or information below address. This includes drawings, attention lines and special instructions, like Fragile. Draw an invisible line immediately above the top line of the address across the envelope. The only thing that should appear anywhere below that line is the address; the rest of the area should be white space.

6) Bottom line of the address can be the zipcode standing alone or the city, state, country, zip.

7) The line above where city, state, country appears should be the address.

8) Apartment numbers, floor number, or suite numbers should be on the same line as the address immediately following the street address OR on the line above the address. The apartment number should NOT be on the line below the address. Remember the machine is working for more specific details as it works up from the bottom of the envelope.

9) The person who specifically is to receive the letter from the postal system should be next. 

     a) If they are to receive it for someone else, this line should start (C/O – care of). 

     b) In cases where one member of the family has moved out (divorce, college) AND there is a forwarding address, one of the duties of the postal carrier is to take out the mail specific to that person and forward it. So if you want mail to go to the Smith family, address it as such – not Miss Janet Smith.

10) Specific instructions of what the person who is to get the mail is to do with it should be located inside the envelope. 


So optimally on the outside envelope write:

SCA name, SCA job

C/O Mundane name

Address line(s)

City, State, Zip+4


On the inside envelope write:

For Their Excellencies

Through the Care of: SCA name, SCA job


Ever a Servant,


Lady Prudence the Curious

-----Original Message-----
From: Hillary Greenslade <hillaryrg at yahoo.com>
To: Scribes within Ansteorra - SCA, Inc. <scriptoris at lists.ansteorra.org>; tessa at gt.rr.com
Sent: Wed, 21 Nov 2007 11:34 am
Subject: [Scriptoris] Address Etiquette

Actually, I agree with Sara that the reason I've never used the Excellencies 
eturn 'address' is that I need to know if the mail was returned, so I can make 
ecessary adjustments to get the post delivered.  
 However, a nice compromise to Tessa's suggestion of correct protocol, would be 
o setup the return address as below, using their Excellencies name, followed by 
he actual address of the sender: 
 Excellencies John and Joan, Baron and Baroness of XYZ
 C/O Susan of the Glenn, Principal Scribe of Barony XYZ
 Attn: Mary Jones, real address, real city, real zipcode. 
 That lets the receiver know that the document is from the representative of 
he B&B, the Scribes SCA name, and their real contact information, in the event 
he post office needs to return the mail.  There is probably a more correct way 
o do the secondary name, rather than using C/O or Attn:, but since we are using 
seudonyms for our SCA names, most Etiquette books don't cover that address 
 Anyone have a better idea?
essa <tessa at gt.rr.com> wrote:
 ...Bowing, Scraping, Bowing, Scraping...
ara, Hillary,
hank you for teaching my ancient and narrow mind the current
ays of appropriate scroll-dom and deliveries thereof,
f not from the hand of the Court at event, if then to be mailed.
 yield to your greater knowledge, and do hereby offer
pologies to Kaithlen Hamilton for my skewed request about return address.
ou are truly correct about not burdening the signatory with return mail...
s well as invitation "returns."
While here, may I please add that it is so marvelous to see "pretty papers"
o out for many venues, winners, participants, etc. Events are greatly 
nhanced, but moreover,
ndividual's hearts are warmed by receiving these works of art.
cribes rock!
essa (who sometimes cannot even spell her name)
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criptoris at lists.ansteorra.org

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