With more than 644,000 employees working at USPS at any given time, it’s not surprising that some famous faces have graced Post Offices and delivery trucks over the years.
In this article, we’re spilling the tea about which celebrities once donned the light-blue USPS polo shirt. We know you’re curious, so without further ado, here’s the list…
Famous Postal Workers In 2022
Famous USPS workers include former presidents Abraham Lincoln and Harry S. Truman, as well as statesman and inventor Benjamin Franklin. Entertainers and authors like Steve Carrell, Bing Crosby, Charles Bukowski, Richard Wright, and William Faulker also used the Postal Service as a jumping-off point for their careers. In addition, famed aviator Charles Lindburgh was a contract airmail pilot.
To get the details about when these celebrities served, what positions they held, and how good (or bad) they were at their jobs, check out this article!
1. Benjamin Franklin (Postmaster General, 1775 –1776)
Franklin is known for a lot of things—drafting the Declaration of Independence, a successful printing business, and his famous lightning experiment.
But did you know that this statesman and inventor also served as the first Postmaster of the Continental Congress?
Before taking the job in 1775, Franklin served under the British as Postmaster of Philadelphia from 1737 to 1753 and as joint Postmaster General from 1753 to 1774.
Not only did Franklin’s experience working for the British help prepare him for his role as America’s first Postmaster, but it also helped him streamline communications when it came time to rebel against the British.
Franklin’s tenure as Postmaster General was considered a success, something the 100 postage stamps in his honor can attest to.
2. Abraham Lincoln (Postmaster, New Salem, IL; 1833 – 1836)
Before becoming America’s 16th president, Honest Abe held the position of Postmaster in his mid-twenties.
Lincoln was known for being an exemplary postal employee, even personally delivering mail to people’s houses when they didn’t come to the Post Office to pick it up.
He held the position for three years until the location was closed. When it did, there was a remaining balance of $16 that Lincoln took with him when he closed the doors for the last time.
Even though he needed the money at the time, Lincoln didn’t touch a cent of it until a postal agent came to collect the balance. Talk about honest!
3. John Brown (Postmaster, Randolph, PA; 1828 – 1835)
Well-known American abolitionist leader John Brown helped establish a Post Office and was named the first Postmaster of the Randolph, Pennsylvania location by then-president John Quincy Adams.
Following his first service period, he was reappointed by President Andrew Jackson and served until he left the state in 1835.
In addition to his Postmaster duties, Brown also carried mail from Meadville, Pennsylvania to Riceville, Pennsylvania (a distance of about 20 miles).
4. Conrad Hilton (Postmaster, San Antonio, NM; 1910–1911)
Before becoming a millionaire hotel magnate, 23-year-old Hilton served as Postmaster of his hometown of San Antonio, New Mexico.
5. Bing Crosby (Substitute and regular clerk, Spokane, WA; 1921)
With his baritone voice and crooning style, Bing Crosby delighted audiences for over 50 years with his radio, television, and movie performances.
But before he made it big, Crosby made a living working as a substitute and regular clerk at the Spokane, Washington branch of the Postal Service.
As a tribute to his lengthy career, Crosby was honored with a $0.29 stamp in 1994.
6. Walt Disney (Substitute carrier, Chicago, IL, and Christmas temporary, Kansas City, MO; 1918, 1919)
Before he was delighting millions with theme parks, movies, and cartoons, young Walt Disney was employed by the Postal Service.
Disney first applied for a position in the summer of 1918 when he was only 16 years old.
He was initially rejected because of his young age, but after putting on a disguise to appear older, young Walt got the job.
In his first stint with the Postal Service, Disney worked as a letter carrier during the day and a route collector at night.
He left the position to volunteer in the war. After returning home, he took a short-lived art job. When he was let go, he returned to the Postal Service for the Christmas period.
Disney’s contributions to the entertainment industry were honored with a $0.06 stamp in 1968.
7. William Faulkner (Acting Postmaster and Postmaster, University, MS; 1921–1924)
Known for works like As I Lay Dying and The Sound and the Fury, Faulkner was perhaps the worst-behaved celebrity postal worker on this list.
He started working as Postmaster at the University of Mississippi in 1922 and quickly found the job boring, tedious, and uninspiring.
Faulkner did nothing to hide his contempt for the job, even going so far as to play cards, write poems, and drink alcohol while on the clock.
Even worse, he opened and closed the Post Office whenever he felt like it, lost letters, and threw away mail.
While Faulker’s time as a Postal Service worker left a lot to be desired, he was honored with a $0.22 stamp in 1987.
8. Sherman Hemsley (Clerk, Philadelphia, PA, and New York, NY; 1960s)
Before “movin’ on up” to his role as George on the long-running sitcom The Jeffersons, Sherman Hemsley was a postal clerk.
He first started in Philadelphia, then moved onto a New York branch so he could take small acting jobs at night.
9. Rock Hudson (Substitute letter carrier, Winnetka, IL; circa 1947)
Actor and heartthrob Rock Hudson worked for the Postal Service sometime around 1947 before striking it big in Hollywood.
10. Charles Lindbergh (Airmail pilot; 1926–1927)
Famed aviator Charles Lindbergh worked as a contract airmail pilot for one year.
He had a 99% delivery rate, a statistic that’s impressive on its own, but even more so when you consider that flying in the mid-20s was hardly a reliable means of transportation.
Another interesting fact about Lindbergh’s Postal Service tenure is that his famous Spirit of St. Louis only carried mail once.
11. Richard Wright (Substitute clerk, Chicago, IL; 1929 –1932
Author of famous works like Uncle Tom’s Cabin, Black Boy, and Native Son, Wright worked at the Post Office in Chicago before moving to New York City to launch his writing career.
USPS honored Wright with a $0.61 stamp issued in 2009.
12. Charles Bukowski (Clerk Los Angeles, CA; 1950s – 60s)
Writer and poet Charles Bukowski had one of the longest Postal Service careers of anyone on this list, staying there for over a decade.
In the early 50s, he spent three years as a substitute mail carrier, then worked as a mail clerk for most of the 60s.
He finally left in 1969 to dedicate his time to writing after receiving an offer from a publisher.
Bukowski’s time at the Post Office provided him with plenty of valuable material for his work. Indeed, his first novel was called Post Office and tells the story of a barfly who works as a substitute mail carrier, quits, and then becomes a mail clerk.
13. Steve Carrell (Rural letter carrier, Littleton, MA; 1985)
Actor and funnyman Steve Carrell briefly served as a rural mail carrier in Massachusetts before moving to Chicago to pursue acting.
Carrell has admitted to being “terrible at the job” due to his tendency to lose mail underneath the seats of his car. He’s also called the position the hardest job he’s ever had.
14. Harry Truman (Postmaster, Grandview, MO; 1914–1915)
Former President Harry Truman held the position of Postmaster officially but did not actually serve in the role.
Rather, he used the position to help a widow, Ella Hall. Hall was actually the one doing the daily duties and earning a Postal Service salary.
USPS has known its fair share of famous postal workers over the years. In fact, the list includes former presidents, actors, and writers. With a record like that, who knows, maybe a future star is working at the Postal Service right now!