On this day in 1775, members of the Second Continental Congress, meeting in Philadelphia, agreed:
That a Postmaster General be appointed for the United Colonies … [and] 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.
This simple statement signaled the birth of the Post Office Department, the predecessor of the U.S. Postal Service.
As the first American communications network, the postal system not only facilitated commerce and strengthened the bonds of family and friendship—it united a nation.
Many things have changed since 1775. In scale, the postal system has grown from 75 Post Offices scattered along the East Coast to more than 30,000 locations tucked into every corner of the nation.
Now, 238 years after its birth, the Postal Service is still delivering for America, moving faster as technology develops and making sending and receiving mail more convenient than ever.