Carl Jantzen (doopokko) wrote in dooptrivia,
Carl Jantzen
doopokko
dooptrivia

The Postal Service

On the 26th of July in 1775 the Second Continental Congress issued a decree stating that


That a Postmaster General be appointed for the United Colonies, who shall hold his office at Philadelphia and shall be allowed a salary of 1000 dollars per an for himself and 340 dollars per an for a secretary and Comptroller, with the power to appoint such and so many deputies as to him may seem proper and necessary.

That a line of posts be appointed under the direction of the Postmaster General from Falmouth in New England to Savannah in Georgia, with as many cross posts as he shall think fit.


The first Postmaster General was Benjamin Franklin. The postal system he established was used primarily to carry communications between Congress and the revolutionary armies. The system continued to operate under the Articles of Confederation.

In 1792 George Washington signed the Postal Service Act which established the United States Post Office Department as an Executive Department, and elevated the Postmaster General to become a member of the cabinet.

In 1970 President Nixon signed the Postal Service Reorganization Act which replaced the Executive Department with a government-owned corporation called the United States Postal Service. The act went into effect on July 1st, 1971. It is now headed by a Board of Governors, who are appointed by the President and approved by the Cabinet. They are, in turn, responsible for selecting the Postmaster General, who is considered the Chief Operating Officer of the service.

Recently the Postal Service has decided to use the URL http://www.usps.com instead of the traditional http://www.usps.gov (which now redirects to the formor). This reflects their business-minded attitude, and minimizes their involvement with the government.

Sources:
The United States Postal Service
http://www.usps.com/postalhistory/postal_service_begins.htm
Everything2
http://www.everything2.com/index.pl?node_id=39854
Wikipedia
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Postal_Service
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Post_Office_Department
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Postmaster_General
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