Owney the Mail Dog (of Milwaukee) honored with stamp

Alyssa Schulte

Dog-lovers out there, prepare to have your heart warmed. Owney, a little mutt who road the rails in the 1890s, is being commemorated on his very own postage stamp. What’s so special about this pup? Every mail train he hitched a ride with arrived at its destination safely, in a time period when crashes were commonplace.

Now a part of the Railway Mail Service train folklore, Owney was once known as a good luck charm. Loved by everyone he met, Owney road the rails, sleeping on mailbags and collecting souvenir tags at every stop, until his death in 1897. But not before travelling over 143,000 miles in his lifetime … without a single accident or crash.

His connection to Milwaukee will be celebrated in the postage stamp, complete with a free public ceremony that was held at the Wisconsin Humane Society this past Wednesday. The event included people telling Owney’s story, with a video about the railway postal system. And, there were crafts! Guests were able to make their very own Owney souvenirs.

What’s even more wonderful about Owney’s story is that it began with him as an unwanted pet, but ending up with a life filled with never-ending appreciation and care. Now, although he’s been gone for over a hundred years, he still remains a lovable symbol for animal adoption.