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A postmaster is the head of an individual post office. When a postmaster is responsible for an entire mail distribution organization (usually sponsored by a national government), the title of Postmaster General is commonly used. Responsibilities of a postmaster typically include management of a centralized mail distribution facility, establishment of letter carrier routes, supervision of letter carriers and clerks, and enforcement of the organization's rules and procedures.
In the United States, women have served as postmasters since the Revolutionary War and even earlier, under British rule. "Postmaster," regardless of the person's sex, has always been the official title for this position.
In Canada, many early places are named after the first postmaster.
In the days of horse-drawn carriages, a postmaster was an individual from whom horses and/or riders (known as postilions or "post-boys") could be hired. The postmaster would reside in a "post house".
In the United States, many Postmasters are members of a management organization which consults with the United States Postal Service (USPS) for compensation and policy. The two management organizations are the National Association of Postmasters of the United States (NAPUS) which has approximately 80% of Postmasters as members and the National League of Postmasters, which is a smaller group. Some Postmasters are members of both organizations.
USPS Postmaster annual salaries average around $60,000, with the upper limit being approximately $110,000 and an entry level salary of $55,000.
The level of pay is based on deliveries and revenue of the post office. Levels are from EAS (Executive and Administrative Service) 11 through 26. Smaller part-time post offices are EP levels 51-55. Larger metropolitan post offices are PCES (Postal Career Executive Service).
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