History Behind The USPS Logo

When it comes to postal services, USPS as a postal agency tops the list with a wide margin for its speedy and huge number of deliveries worldwide. Every citizen of the United States has to access the services of USPS. Officially, the postal department of America states that their services started back on 1st July 1971, but its history and logo are way earlier. 

The first logo and motto formed were back in 1775 when a famous politician Benjamin Franklin set up the U.S. post and became an executive head. It has been over two centuries of glory now. Many new logos of the U.S. post came during all these years, which we will learn in this article period by period. 

History Behind The USPS Logo


Officially now, the USPS has no official motto. But for a sign of authentication, they still maintain one. The bald eagle of the U.S. post is a mascot but not a motto, but people believe it as so. The bald eagle is the country’s national symbol, which is also used as the symbol of their post office services. 

So, from this, we know that the mascot bald eagle is known as the modern U.S. post logo. However, this sign of the bald eagle does not always represent different postal operations in the market of services. Before this bald eagle was the mascot, there were various other symbols of USPS. Let us learn about the different era and their symbols (logos). 


With the help of famous American politician Benjamin Franklin, the postal department of the United States of America was formed in the late 18th century. A Roman mythological character was taken as the symbol of the USPS post during this era, the very first stages of the postal services. 

The mythical character was the patron saint of the God of trade Mercury, which is responsible for all kinds of transportation. The suggestion came from one of the postal service workers Ebenezer Hazard, to keep the messenger of God responsible for good trading as the first symbol. This symbol first came into use in 1782 when UPSOD was not in existence, but only the United States Post Office. 

In the postage center, the symbol of Mercury became widely accepted. The swift God of trade runs across a ball with his arms spread out. The characteristic attributes of the mythological character show why it is taken as the symbol of the United States post: the God of trading stands still with this caduceus wand and a winged helmet. 

Around Mercury’s mythical character, there is a ring with an inscription written on it “SEAL OF THE GENERAL POST OFFICE DEPARTMENT.” This emblem ran for six decades until the year 1837. The U.S. emblem changed from 1838. 


From early 1938, a new emblem came in place of the old emblem of mythical God Mercury, which represents a horseman. Probably because a horseman (a postman sitting on a running horse) depicts a direct connection of the services provided by the post office department to its users, we can say that the horseman is a postman because of the sack with the inscription “US MAIL” on his horse saddle. 

Now, the history behind this image is substantial and did not arise by mere chance. Earlier, post office couriers used to deliver their letters and emails correspondence to land, using horses as their only means of transportation. 

The logo has a dynamic view in it. The idea of using this as the official emblem came from a UPSOD executive named Amos Kendall, who wanted to depict the daily hard work of a postman. It was fully in black and around which runs a ring exactly as the previous one with a couple of inscriptions “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” and “POST OFFICE DEPARTMENT.” Five-pointed stars separate between the two inscriptions on the logo. 

This logo ran for a very long time. From 1837 to 1970, for 133 years, this emblem was used to denote the United States Post Services. 


In the mid-1970, the old symbol of a postman riding a horse became defunct. During that period, the then President of the United States created the Postal Reorganization Act, which gave birth to the United States Postal Services (a modern rendition of the US Postal department), which is still in function. With this signing, a new emblem came into function. 

America’s pride, the bald eagle, took place for the first time. The eagle stands above a couple of red-colored horizontal lines, with its giant wings spread wide. Between the two red lines, there is an inscription in black as “U.S. MAIL.” The emblem has no boring square frame but an inscription of nine five-pointed stars and the full-service name. The designer of this emblem is known as the Master of Industrial Design, Raymond Loewy. 


The next update of the UPSC logo came in 1992 when Marvin Runyon became the postmaster general. In this new emblem, they decided not to use the whole eagle with its wings, and everything but rather only the head and its sharp hook-shaped beak remained of the bird. The beak is bent 90 degrees. As per design is concerned, the eagle’s head is put in a blue-colored rectangular box with the label “United States Postal Service” placed on the right side of the box. The first couple of words, “United States,” is written above a thin red-colored line while the next two words, “Postal Service,” come under the thin red line. The full inscription is in block letters with a sans serif italic font. 

About The Modern Emblem 

The head of the bald eagle is a symbol of the spirit of the United States Postal Service and its pride in being one of the best postal services in the world. The flying eagle also depicts speed which is common with the U.S. mail. 

Andrew Higgins, an engineering professor, and hydrodynamic fanatic tried to calculate the actual speed of the logo just by judging its flight through the picture. Using a series of numerical and scientific formulas, the professors find the eagle’s speed (Mach number) to be 4.9. According to this value, it denotes a speed that is even faster than the speed of sound. It is approximately around 60 thousand kilometers per second, which is insane. 

The italics sans serif font of the logo gives it a pretty modern look. All the letters in this logo include the classy-looking triangular” A,” crafted by famous typographer Daniel Zadorozny. The colors used in this logo are three in total: red, white, and blue. As per the Hex table, the colors in this emblem are corresponding to shades #004B87, #DA291C, and #FFFFFF. 

The postal department of the United States has been glorious for the country for almost 250 years now. During this course of time, the emblem of the department changed four times. Firstly, the Greek mythical God of Mercury became the emblem of the postal department back in the late 18th century. 

It ran for more than 50 years. Later, the second emblem was the most famous one and was in service for almost 150 years: a postman riding a horse to deliver the mail. After the USPS was modernized in the 1970s, the emblem changed again, and the pride bird of the United States took the place of the horse riding postman. 

And then, for the final time, the emblem went through fine modern tuning, and a new design came in place of the 1973 version. Which one of the four do you think was the most attractive one?

Avatar of Robert Johnson

Shipping guy at USPS, previously at Fedex.

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