from New York Times
Queens Houses Loathe to Use New Numbers
Mixed System Complicates Mail Delivery
Reluctance of residents and business firms in Queens to use the new system of street and house numbers in the borough, recently established by the Topographical Bureau, is proving a problem for officials and postal authorities there, according to an announcement yesterday by the Chamber of commerce of the Borough of Queens.
The valuable business asset connected with a well-known address and the inconvenience of printing new stationery were given as reasons why business firms were slow to adopt the new numbering system.
Delivery of mail is complicated because part of the residents of a street use the old system and the remainder use the new numbers. Postmasters of the four postal districts in Queens have endeavored to increase the use of the new numbers, and Borough President Maurice Connolly has urged their adoption.
A simple method for remembering the new system has been put down in rhyme by Ellis Parker Butler, one of Flushing's most famous authors, as follows:
In Queens to find locations best --
Avenues, Roads and Drives run West;
But ways to North and South, 'tis plain
Are Street or Place or even lane;
While even numbers you will meet
Upon the West and South of Street.
Proper street names and numbers will be furnished upon request by Albert E. Thomas, Assistant Chief engineer of the Topographical Bureau.
In 1920, according to the United States Census, the population of Queens Borough was less than 500,000. Today it is more than 1,000,000 according to an estimate. The Chamber of Commerce points out that if the new house and street numbers had been fully adopted in 1920 more than half the population of Queens would never have known the annoyance of changing and that by today the new system would be altogether in use.