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United States Postmaster General

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  • Franklin E. Plummer (1795 - 1852)
    Franklin E. Plummer, a Democratic Party leader in the 1830s, was born in Richmond, Massachusetts, around 1795, the son of Edward Plummer and Esther Raymond Plummer. Earning his passage as a deck hand, ...
  • Dr. Zachery D. Massey, US Congress (1864 - 1923)
    David Massey (November 14, 1864 - July 13, 1923) was an American politician that represented the 1st congressional district of Tennessee in the United States House of Representatives. ContentsMassey wa...
  • Francisco Perea, US Congress (aft.1830 - bef.1913)
    Perea (January 9, 1830 – May 21, 1913) was Union Army officer in the American Civil War and a cousin of Pedro Perea. He was a delegate for the Territory of New Mexico to the 38th United States Congress...
  • Lt. (USA) William Shadrach Shallenberger, US Rep, PA (1839 - 1914)
    William Shadrack Shallenberger (November 24, 1839 – April 15, 1914) was a Republican member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Pennsylvania.William S. Shallenberger was born in Mount Pleasant, P...
  • Marvin Travis Runyon (1924 - 2004)
    Travis Runyon (September 16, 1924 – May 3, 2004) was an American business executive. After a long career as a manufacturing executive at Ford Motor Company, he retired, then was the U.S. head of Nissan...

The United States Postmaster General is the chief executive officer of the United States Postal Service. The office, in one form or another, is older than both the United States Constitution and the United States Declaration of Independence. Benjamin Franklin was appointed by the Continental Congress as the first Postmaster General in 1775, serving slightly longer than 15 months.

Until 1971, the postmaster general was the head of the Post Office Department (or simply "Post Office" until the 1820s). From 1829 to 1971, he was a member of the President's Cabinet.

The Cabinet post of Postmaster General was often given to a new President's campaign manager or other key political supporter, and was considered something of a sinecure. The Postmaster General was in charge of the governing party's patronage, and was a powerful position which held much influence within the party.

In 1971, the Post Office Department was re-organized into the United States Postal Service, an independent agency of the executive branch. Thus, the Postmaster General is no longer a member of the Cabinet and is no longer in Presidential succession.

During the American Civil War, the Confederate States of America Post-office Department provided mail service for the Confederate States, headed by a Postmaster General, John Henninger Reagan.

The Postmaster General is second-highest paid U.S. government official, based on publicly available salary information, after the President of the United States.

List of Postmasters General