POST OFFICE HISTORY WITH NALC EMPHASIS
This page hasn't been updated in quite a while but I still find the information interesting. Please send more interesting information to post.
2/23/23: Click here to see a powerpoint slideshow organizing presentation about the NALC and how it operates.
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History of the NALC
Click on Ed Martin: Education with Ed. Posted March 17
Greetings Union Brothers and Sisters,
Did you know?
1. Benjamin Franklin was the first Postmaster General
2. Letter Carriers were the first postal craft to form a union.
3. The NALC was founded August 29, 1889. The NALC had 96 Members.
4. In 1893 the NALC vs. The Post Office Department won letter carriers 3.5 million dollars in overtime claims in the Supreme Court.
5. The Post Office Department once hired men called "Spotters" to spy on letter carriers. In March 1896, the Spotter System was disbanded.
6. On September 20, 1917 the NALC affiliated with the American Federation of Labor.
7. Our 18 & 8 Standard was based on the ability of a young physically fit letter carrier that was timed with a stopwatch
8. In 1920, the Civil Service Retirement Act Passed: City Carriers also received Sick Leave
9. In 1930, the NALC had 58,000 Members
10. From 1929 to 1949 the average pay of a letter carrier was $2,064 per year.
11. March 20, 1933, President Roosevelt cut letter carriers wages by 15% reducing our salaries to 1916 levels.
12. In 1960 the NALC Health Benefits Plan began operating
13. In 1962, NALC President Doherty turned the first shovel on earth for NALCREST
14. NALCREST stands for "National Association of Letter Carriers Rest, Education, Security and Training"
15. In 1968 a Letter Carrier average pay was $6,000 per year
16. In 1970, the NALC had 212,000 Members
17. On March 17, 1970 NALC Branch 36 Members voted to strike regardless of whether the national union would join or not.
18. On March 18, 1970 City Carriers did not report to work with satchels but Picket Signs instead
19 By March 23, 1970 Over 200,000 postal employees were on strike.
20. The strike lasted approximately 8 days which led to the Postal Reorganization Act.
21. In 1976 the NALC defeated LCRES in arbitration. (Read: Carriers in a Common Cause)
22. In 1979 Vincent R. Sombrotto became the NALC 16th President.
23. DPS was introduced in the early 1990s
24. May 15, 1993 a revamped version of our NALC Food Drive began
25. In 1996 usps management unilaterally withdrew from the 14 year joint employee involvement process
26 1999 Arbitration Decision elevated City Carriers from Grade 5 to Grade 6!
27. In 2002 Vincent R. Sombrotto concluded his 24 Year Career as our NALC President
28. In 2003 "e-Activist" legislative network was created to provide instant legislative updates and rapid communications to legislators
29. In 2009 Fredric V. Rolando became the NALC 18th President. President Rolando is from Region 9
30. In 2016 the NALC had 290,000 members
Brothers and Sisters, this is just a small fraction of our history I listed above. If you knew all the history of the NALC you would never question the loss of one grievance, the dedication of a shop steward, the cost of union dues, the occasional 10 hour workday, the six day workweek, the occasional delivery after dark, or the additional packages we deliver today. If you just knew a little about the history of the NALC as I do about the sweat and tears from the struggle of the carriers that once did the exact same work we do today for approximately $125.00 per week, like me, you would say, "Thank You NALC!" every payday. Forget about the pay for a moment. I never imagined I would have so many rights and benefits with just a High School Diploma. In my 27 Years with the USPS, I made use of the benefits negotiated by the NALC such as Transferring from one state to another with Salary Protection, Healthcare, Annual Leave, and Sick Leave benefits. With that said, thank you NALC and all those members before me that paved the way.
American Activist Samuel Gompers once said, "Where trade unions are most firmly organized, there are the rights of the people most respected".
Ed Martin, LBA
NALC Region 9 / Columbia
P.O. Box 91065
Columbia, S.C. 29290
Webmaster: David Kopp: History of the Post Office
The Article to the left by Ed Martin prompts me to add a little more information: Click here to the NALC.org page history page. For a complete history please download Carriers in a Common Cause, click here.