The Griswold Post Office was constructed in 1932 on the site of the
former Erie Taxicab Company. This 55,900 square foot structure housed a
local branch of the United States Postal Service for over seventy
years. Its location was strategically placed adjacent to Union Station.
The post office’s 23,900 square foot basement was constructed with a
system of tunnels that connected it westward to the train station. This
allowed mail transported by train to be easily and safely transferred
to the post office. Also, a bomb shelter was placed within this
westward tunnel and could shelter about 500 people. Union Station’s
passenger trains could effortlessly evacuate those in the bomb shelter.
Eastward of this main tunnel was an adjoining tunnel that has a rations
shelter, with food containers still stocked on shelves, a two-story
coal room, and a two-story boiler room with three blast furnaces. A
continuation of the eastbound tunnel heads towards Peach Street and may
lead to the docks at Presque Isle Bay, but this extension of the tunnel
has been blocked. Upstairs on the building’s first level, where much of
the post office’s activity occurred, is a mailroom and post office
boxes. Employee offices were on the second floor. The Griswold Building
was purchased by a local lawyer in 2010, and due to the waning use of
paper mailing in the past decade, the post office relocated to a
smaller space in the Mercantile Building on East 14th and State in
2012. Currently the Internal Revenue Service occupies space in the
newly renamed Griswold Plaza. Its owner is dedicated to preserving the
property’s history and attracting new businesses to the area.