Friends and family of Mitchell Rowland turned out for a reception in his honor Friday afternoon at the Liberty Post Office where he has retired after 38 years with the US Postal Service.
Rowland began his career with the Postal Service as a substitute rural mail carrier at the Liberty Post Office in March 1975. At that time Hoyte Cook was the Post Master. Gordon Jennings ran Route 1 and Truitt Robinson ran Route 2. Rowland was Jennings' substitute.
In April 1982, Robinson transferred to the Watertown Post Office and Rowland took over Route 2 full time. At that time the route was considered a 34 hour per six day a week route, and was approximately 90 miles.
In July 2013, Rowland's route became a 42 hour per six day week route and was approximately 98 miles.
Rowland's substitute was Resha Self. Sharon George worked in the post office. Charlie Robinson ran Route 1 with Jack Campbell being his substitute. There have been approximately five Post Masters while Rowland has been employed at the Liberty Post Office. George is now the Officer in Charge. Rowland always delivered his own mail as well as his sisters' Genrose and Terry Bess.
Self took over Rowland's route when he officially retired on July 31, 2013.