“The Post Office Dog”

This blog was originally posted March 3, 2018. Recently, we came across a photo of King in our collection. We decided to re-post the blog and share this photo! If you can identify the postal worker with King, please reach out to us – we’d love to hear from you.

Unidentified postal worker with King, the honorary mascot of the Cañon City Post Office, ca. 1955. Object ID: 2012.073.585; Copyright Royal Gorge Regional Museum & History Center.

Did you know the Cañon City Postal Service used to have a mascot? His name was King and he was a constant companion of the mail carriers, which earned him his honorary mascot title. Each year, the postal employees chipped in together to buy King’s dog license. In an article from the Cañon City Daily Record on May 25, 1957, it was stated that King showed no partiality in the carrier he decided to accompany each day. A later article from November 1958 begs to differ however. This article claimed King preferred to go with Rollo Gebhardt on City Route 2. Once Gebhardt retired, King spent the majority of his time with carrier John Robertson “and divided his home life with Robertson and John Bridges”. As a pup, King apparently spent his early life with Darrel Wayne Pontius but by 1954 he was a familiar companion of the mail carriers. King was apparently a very dedicated worker and was at the post office each morning at 8 AM. Every once in a while, he might pass up a mail route and spend some time in the office instead. King apparently wanted to make sure he learned every job although he preferred the mail routes.  In the evenings, he stayed with different postal workers and would choose an employee to go home with at the end of each day for his food and lodging.

Just because King didn’t have a permanent home didn’t mean he was destitute. A checking account filed under “King U.S. Mail” was in the care of Carl Weinheimer at the First National Bank. The account was first started by Frank Harvey and was maintained by dog lovers and postal employees. At the time of his death in 1958, the balance of King’s account was $13.00 and was used to pay the veterinarian and burial fee. King was apparently beloved by many in the community.

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