The Mail Boat Captain of Detroit

Capt. Sam Buchanan skippers the nation’s only boat with its own zip code (48222), which delivers U.S. mail to ships while they are underway. His boat, JW Westcott II, is a 45-footer built in 1949. We followed in the wake of the 51-year-old captain as he piloted JW to make a mail delivery to a passing freighter, and caught up with him after his appointed round.

Yep. We call it “mail by the pail” because that’s what most ships’ crews have on hand to heave over the side and fetch our deliveries.

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