Historical Highlights

William S. King of Minnesota was chosen as Postmaster of the House

July 05, 1861
William S. King of Minnesota was chosen as Postmaster of the House Image courtesy of Library of Congress William S. King not only served as Postmaster of the House, he served one term as a Representative from the state of Minnesota from 1875 to 1877. King received one committee assignment during his term: the Committee on Militia.
On this date, future Representative William S. King of Minnesota was chosen as Postmaster of the House of Representatives. King served as Postmaster from 1861 to 1865 and then again from 1867 to 1873. An elected officer of the House from the 24th Congress (1835–1837) through the 102nd Congress (1991–1993), the Postmaster managed all mail operations for the House. Initially, workers in the Doorkeeper’s office were paid additional compensation to perform mail duties. A December 13, 1832, resolution made the Postmaster a distinct and permanent House employee. In 1834, William J. McCormick, a Doorkeeper’s employee, was named the first House Postmaster. Four years later, the House adopted a rule that charged the Postmaster with superintending the post office in the Capitol and overseeing the delivery of mail to Members and officers. The House Reform Resolution of 1992 abolished the Office of the Postmaster and reassigned mail handling procedures for the House of Representatives among other House officers and private entities.

Related Highlight Subjects