When did delivered newspapers start to be bagged in plastic?

I once filled in for a friend who was on vacation in the late 1980s, and delivered newspapers on his route (by bicycle, of course) for a week. At that time, we stuffed the newspapers in plastic bags at home so that, when I threw them on the driveway/lawn/sidewalk/bushes/car/cat, they wouldn’t land in a puddle and be ruined.

When did bagging newspapers that in plastic (for home delivery only) become widespread in the US? Was it being done in the 1970s?

My brother delivered the Cleveland Press in the mid 60s. I helped on occasion. We never bagged them.

For a long time, the newspapers here were wrapped in some sort of oiled paper bags. I guess they were relatively expensive, since the carriers only used them when the weather was bad, and even then they had a tendency to tear when they landed. I think they switched over to plastic in the early 1980s.

When I delivered papers in the '60s they were not bagged. The paper I get now is bagged during rainy season (winter) but not during dry season (summer.)

Small-city paperboy 1973-75. We were provided plastic bags. My dad wanted me to use them every day, as the newspaper gave those to paperboys for free. We had to buy rubber bands.

  1. We moved to the Philly suburbs and the paper was delivered in actual bread bags on rainy days. Not long after it was every day and then after that custom bags appeared.

I delivered papers in the early 70’s. Everyone on my route had newspaper boxes, no bags needed.

I delivered a couple of local papers in the late 80s as a kid, and we didn’t bag them as a matter of course. Only when the weather required it.

I delivered the Hartford Courant from 1973 to 1977 and never saw a plastic bag. On rainy or snowy days you just put the paper in a secure, dry area. Wind sucks. I hated windy days, more so than any stormy, rainy, or icy days. Wind really sucks.

In 1970 my first husband and I delivered the now-defunct Dallas Times Herald on a 60-mile motor route in Arlington, Texas. No plastic bags (for the daily paper-- we did have them for the Sunday paper)), and the paper carriers had to PAY for the rubber bands if we wanted to use those. We used string. He became very adept at wrapping the string around the tightly rolled paper that I handed him, sliding it briskly down the paper so it wrapped around itself, snapping the string, then tossing the paper out the window of the moving truck. LOTS of newsprint on your hands at the end of the route. We also had to go door-to-door to collect once a month–no mail-in bills. (Aside: that’s where I learned to drive a standard–plenty of practice backing up, stopping and starting, slowing and speeding up.)

As a fellow DTH delivery person from the late 60s, I can tell you that there was a brief time that Mrs. Bairds Bread supplied plastic bread bags for delivery, the forerunner of wrapper advertising, I suppose. My route was quite a bit shorter, however, and papers were delivered from the seat of my Schwinn

Edit: Collecting sucked royally.

I delivered the Pittsburgh Press (defunct) in the late 60s and early 70s. No bags.

Long enough that I don’t remember that not being the case (born early 70s). I grew up in the Pacific NW, so there was a good chance on any given day your newspaper was going to get rained on. My wife delivered papers in the mid-90s and said they only did it when there was bad weather, which, was quite often.

What are newspapers?

In one of today’s classes, I had to explain to a 12-year-old why the text talked about looking in newspapers for the start time of movies.

She’s actually seen newspapers for sale at 7-11 but had never held one, let alone read one.

Maybe those were the bags we used for the Sunday paper. During the week we delivered the afternoon paper. Went to pick up papers at 1:00 AM Sunday morning and bagged them on the tailgate of the pickup while munching on KFC from a big bucket. Today if I ate fried chicken in the middle of the night, it would probably kill me.

Absolutely! Some people would REFUSE to pay–after you’d delivered their paper for a month! Or they wouldn’t answer the door. Grrr…

This breaks my heart.

Wow I never thought a young kid would have to deal with that. That’s terrible.

Ann Arbor News in 1980. No plastic bags and no rubber bands.
Everyone on my route had a special place, and on day one I was handed a crazy photocopied hand-written list of things like “1234 Main - milk box on porch”, “1288 Main - screen door” and “1292 Main - mailbox”

One house had “in milk chute” and I was introduced to a quaint concept of a little insulated pass-through from the exterior wall of the house to the kitchen, with doors on either end, where a 1930’s-era milk man placed the deliveries, and where 1930’s-era ne’er-do-wells probably placed stray cats.

Another house had “hole in garage door” and there was, indeed, a ragged hole that looked like it had been roughly hewn with a drywall saw.

I did adult early morning delivery from a car for a while. Plastic bags were for rainy days.

However, now many people have sprinklers that come on early mornings. so the paper gets wet. Thus plastic bags.

I delivered newspapers in the late 80’s through the early 90’s. When I started, we rubber banded newspapers on dry days, and had the option to buy bags for rainy days. By '91 or '92, I had to deliver all papers in plastic bags.

Miami 1979, I helped out a buddy (were were 11) deliver papers sometimes.

Papers got bagged on rainy days IIRC.

People would refuse to pay, if you don’t pay you get canceled. Too many cancellations get you fired, so paperboys pay for deadbeats or lose their jobs.:mad:

The nice people laughed and didn’t pay, the mean ones called and made up fake complaints to get the paper free…getting the paperboy fired. :smack: