One for 'steampunk' fans of lost Victorian technologies .... a nice piece from Mr. Andrew Wynter on the future of pneumatic despatch systems ...
"The projector of the railway system could scarcely have foreseen the extent to which the locomotive would supersede other means of progression, and the principle of suction certainly starts on its career with as much certainty of succeeding as did that scheme. Some time towards the end of the century, we may perchance hear the householder giving directions to have his furniture sucked up to Highgate — for hills form but little impediment to the new system of traction, — or the coal merchant ordering a waggon load of coals to be shot into the pipe for delivery a dozen miles distant ..."
See Alfred Rosling-Bennett for a little more perspective. Picture courtesy of Illustrated London News Picture Gallery.