Railway mail catcher pouch
This “catcher” pouch was used by Railway Post Offices (RPOs) in exchanging mail with stations where the train did not stop. The pouch was hung on a trackside "mail crane" and snagged from the crane by an steel rod "catcher arm" that was mounted in the RPO's doorway.
Catcher pouches are all one size and made of canvas strengthened by leather bindings around the rounded top. A leather strap buckled around the center so that it would form an hour-glass shape. A pouch lock secured the leather strap closing its neck. Both ends of the pouch had a steel ring attached. The leather-reinforced end was clipped onto the upper mail crane bracket and the locked-end was fastened to the bottom bracket.
This pouch was made in October 1963 at the Mail Equipment Shops, Washington, DC. This was close to the end of manufacturing for this pouch style. RPO routes were being discontinued throughout the 1960s.