“Congress shall have the power to establish Post Offices and post roads.”
—United States Constitution, Section 8, Clause 1/7
The Star Route Service began as an effort to save money and expand the range of the postal system. Despite episodes of scandal and strife, it became an integral part of mail transportation in the United States. For more than 150 years, the Star Route Service has transported mail within cities, between cities, and to the homes of citizens across the United States.
Winning a Contract
Advertisements announced available Star Routes and contractors offered proposals for carrying the mail. Typically, Star Route contracts were awarded for four-year terms. The contractors had to carry insurance and take an oath of office.
The language and specifications of Star Route contracts changed over time. Originally, Star Route contractors chose the mode of transportation. Today, postal officials designate the route and mode of transportation.