I was watching the movie "Pride and Prejudice" not long ago, struck by how much the main character Lizzie Bennett wrote letters. This was the time of quill pens and mail delivery by horse.

By modern standards, Lizzie’s postal service was notoriously slow, typically several days or weeks to receive correspondence. But she got very personal service ---the horseback postman delivered to the front door of Longbourn, her family’s humble English cottage.

If Congress has its way the door-to-door service Lizzie enjoyed, and most of us still do too, will soon be the stuff of nostalgia. Under a plan to cut postal costs -- the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee recently voted to eliminate front door mail service. Instead, letter carriers would deliver to your curb or to cluster boxes. The new plan is called Delivery Point Modernization. It’s part of the effort to slash the United States Postal Service's nearly $6 billion annual deficit. It’s a significant savings— door to door delivery costs $350 for each address-- about twice as much as a cluster box

For lots of people, door-to-door service is already a thing of the past; they live in new housing developments where curbside and cluster box delivery is the norm.

The door-to-door elimination plan, however, is not quite final. There is strong opposition from lawmakers like Massachusetts Rep. Stephen Lynch who points out that in densely populated neighborhoods like South Boston there is no room to build cluster collection stations.

Congress already rejected the post office’s proposal to end Saturday delivery, but the agency’s huge ongoing deficit requires more cuts to service.

The door-to-door postal delivery is more than a budget line item. It’s part of the American cultural experience -- opening the mailbox anticipating the fat or thin college application letter, sorting through credit card solicitations, bills, and the occasional ivory linen wedding invite.

Though I live in the world of email, and am known to send a tweet or two, I also enjoy writing letters and sending cards which I know marks me as old fashioned as Lizzie Bennett’s elbow length ball gloves.

In "Pride and Prejudice", a letter from the prideful Mr. Darcy to Lizzie comes at a significant turning point in the novel. He concludes his several page missive to her with these words, "I shall endeavor to find some opportunity of putting this letter in your hands in the course of the morning.”

Would that Mr. Darcy was the Postmaster General.