Final Jeopardy: U.S. Postal Abbreviations

Today’s Final Jeopardy question (9/20/2017) in the category “U.S. Postal Abbreviations” was:

In 1969 the “B” in this State’s abbreviation was changed to an “E” to avoid confusion with a Canadian province.

New champ Betsy Knudson won $29,200 yesterday, the highest payout out of the first 7 games of this season. In Game 2 for Betsy, she takes on these two players: Julie Roth, from Odessa, TX; and Justin Torello, from Monroe, NY.

Round 1 Categories: Fond Meme-ories – Bush I & II Cabinet Members – The Next State Capital Alphabetically – Go for the Throat – Art Supplies – The “Ex” Factor

Justin found the Jeopardy! round Daily Double in “Bush Cabinet Members” under the $600 clue, with 2 clues still to go after it. He was in third place with $1,600, $2,200 less than Julie’s lead. He bet $1,000 but did not know so he was WRONG.

Married to a Kansas senator, she was Secretary of Labor for H.W. show

Julie finished in the lead with $4,600. Betsy was second with $3,000 and Justin was last with $600.

Round 2 Categories: Let’s Hear It for Wednesday – Marine Biology – British Playwrights – Rap Music Grammys – Words of Opposition – Europe “N”

Justin found the first Daily Double in “Wednesday” under the $1,600 clue on the 7th pick. He was in third place with $3,000 at this point, $2,400 behind Julie’s lead. He bet $1,500 and he was RIGHT.

Black Wednesday, sometimes called the biggest night of the year for bars & partying, is in this month. show

Betsy found the last Daily Double in “Marine Biology” under the $1,600 clue, with 5 clues left after it. In third place with $5,400, she had $1,600 less than Julie’s lead. She bet $1,600 and she was RIGHT.

Since it is lighter than water, the oil mainly in this organ prevents sharks from sinking. show

Julie finished in the lead with $9,400. Justin was next with $7,700 and Betsy was in third place with $7,000.

Only ONE of the contestants got Final Jeopardy! right.


The U.S. Post Office has a pdf chart comparing official state postal abbreviation changes going all the way back to 1831, the first time they issued them. Nebraska was initially changed from “NEB” to “NB” in Oct 1963, then later changed in 1969 to “NE” at the Canadian government’s request to avoid confusion with the province of New Brunswick.

I remember that those changes included changing from zones to zip codes and it was driving everyone bananas, especially if you worked in a big city. I also found it interesting that, officially, the abbreviation for Pennsylvania was always Pa. or PA, because I remember many folks using Penn. or Penna.

Betsy got it right. She bet $2,401 bringing her up to $9,401.

Justin had no response so he lost his $1,000 bet, finishing with $6,700.

Julie also had nada. She lost $6,000, landing her in third place with $3,400. So Betsy remained the champ. Her 2-day total is $38,601

Final Jeopardy (9/20/2017) Betsy Knudson, Justin Torello, Julie Roth

A triple stumper from each round

ART SUPPLIES ($800) This fast-drying type of paint made from synthetic resins comes in 2 main types, fluid & heavy body

BRITISH PLAYWRIGHTS ($2000) This “Betrayal” dramatist was Oscar-nominated for his adaptation of “The French Lieutenant’s Woman”

2 years ago: ALL of the players got this FJ in “Final Jeopardy: Historic Legislation”

In 1820 Jefferson called this bill “the knell of the union”, saying “a geographical line… will never be obliterated.” show

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9 Responses

  1. Marilyn says:

    Justin’s wager did not make sense to me.

  2. Lou says:

    Zip codes are not to be forgotten. Also Justin was a good sport in only betting 1000 dollars to avoid losing a lot of cash. VJ, what state did you originally move from? I sometimes do get MA and ME confused because I always thought that ME was Massachusetts and MA Was Maine.

    • VJ says:

      Back then, it sure wasn’t as easy to look up a zip code as it is now, that’s for sure ;)

      I am originally from NJ, Lou. The zip codes in that area start with 07. Here in TX where I am, a lot of them start with 77, and I still start writing or typing 07 out of habit sometimes

      • Lou says:

        Ah yes I see, my family and I used to live in New Jersey as well until we moved to Connecticut because they changed jobs. Before that we lived in Indiana. And the zip codes in Connecticut always start with zero since, well, it makes things a lot easier to read and usually I type that out when doing letter mailing or something else all together. Still using zip codes makes people’s lives a whole lot easier.

  3. Richard Corliss says:

    I’m sure we can keep this streak alive.

  4. ZIP Codes were introduced on 1 July 1963, with the two-letter ALL CAPS no periods state abbreviations debuting on 1 October 1963, three months later (and two days before the Sigma 7 Wally Schirra space mission). The NB to NE switch did occur in 1969. Some behind-the-times ignoramuses, including alas those writing the AP style book, still resist adopting this clean, sensible, modern approach. BTW, I did easily get this FJ clue.

    • VJ says:

      Thanks, Alfred. I fixed my 60s refs. Well, I thought that would be a 3 for 3. I only know 2 states that have a B in them and the other one doesn’t have an E in it

      LINK: 13 more clues from this match!

  5. aaaa says:

    For a show that historically has had slightly more male champions than female over the Trebek years, no man has won a game so far in season 34.

    • TR says:

      Unfortunately, they’ve all been 1- and 2-day champs. Last season felt like there were more female winner than in past years (I might be wrong, I wasn’t counting or anything), but as of right now the upcoming TOC will have only 2 women out of 15. I know there are more Julia Collinses out there!

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