Bicentennial Essay: From Sermons to Sonys: HOW WE KEEP IN TOUCH

NEIL HARRIS

The following Bicentennial Essay is the sixth in a series that will appear periodically and will discuss how we have changed in our 200 years.

Writing from Williamsburg in 1777, Thomas Jefferson voiced a complaint that echoes across the years. The post office, he grumbled, was inefficient. Riders were supposed to travel night and day, and pick up their mail three times a week; yet they were not meeting their schedules. "The speedy and frequent communication of intelligence is really of great consequence," Jefferson reminded his correspondent, John Adams. "Our people, merely for want of intelligence which they may rely on,...

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