Stories from the Former Canadian Westinghouse Company: The Mailroom

Edward (Ted) Smith worked in the Westinghouse Annex building (HO Annex) from 1973 to 1983 in the Payroll Accounting department, but started as a mail boy at Westinghouse HQ in 1972. Ted shares his stories of working in the mailroom at the age of 21.


“I began at Westinghouse July 31, 1972 as a mail boy. The mailroom was in the basement of the Westinghouse HO building. It had a conveyor belt chute from the back parking lot into the mailroom. Every weekday and Saturday morning the Post Office would deliver about 7 large mail bags and packages.


The mailroom supervisor, Jack Milburn, would hit the conveyor button to bring down the packages.  If there was large one he would stack it on the floor, but if it was small enough to hold in one hand, he would see where the package needed to be delivered and would fling it through the air into the appropriate bin. If you were a newbie, you might find yourself whacked in the head with one of those flying packages - I learned to duck very early on in my mailroom career. There were two mail boys who delivered mail out to the factory and two girls who did the head office building - dividing the floors in two.


At the other end of the mail room in the basement was the Addressograph department - an old technology for printing addresses on envelopes. I worked there for a couple of months before moving out of the mailroom. Many people will remember Alice Coleman who ran that area - always respectfully called Mrs. Coleman.”


Ted finished his career as a Senior Clerk in Payroll Accounting. This picture is from 1983 - packing up the payroll office to move to the downtown location. Left to right standing: Clark Stewart; Lorraine Bigrigg; Anonymous; Betty Oberski; Lloyd Howarth; Doug Simpson. Kneeling: Norma Wright and Ted Smith. Photo by Boschler.

After his career at Westinghouse, Ted went on to get PhD in History and now teaches at the University of Guelph and Guelph/Humber.


We continue to gather stories from people who worked at the Former Westinghouse Company to share the history and community connections that contribute to the richness of Westinghouse HQ today.


If you have a story to share, please email history@westinghousehq.com.

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