These are the pages with which I began my journey in Green County (the microfilm collection is more completely explained in my blog back in April):
The second name listed is Fredolin Egger, who was appointed as the Postmaster for the New Glarus Post Office on 24 May 1856. There was not another Postmaster appointed before the 1860 census, so I checked that Population Schedule to see if he declared himself a Federal employee. Nope. He said he was a "merchant." He was born in Switzerland (no requirement to be a native-born American for a Postmaster position).
Let's check another one - Harry Prior:
Harry was appointed Postmaster of the Morefield Post Office on 13 December 1854. According to the 1860 census, he considered his main source of income to be as a farmer and he lived in Mt. Pleasant. The Morefield Post Office was discontinued on 16 January 1861. Good luck finding any references to this small locale! But if you have an ancestor who declared his/her home was "Morefield," there is a chance that he/she was being quite truthful. Have problems locating the town your forebear came from? Check this microfilm collection!
One more for this post - Alfred Goddard of Monroe, Wisconsin. Monroe was a larger town and had many change outs in the Postmaster position:
Let's get a closer look at Mr. Goddard:
Monroe was the County Seat and housed the courthouse (that's what /c.h./ means) and Mr. Goddard received his assignment on 2 June 1853. He lived in that same community, according to the 1860 census (where he is listed as "A. Goddard") and declared his primary occupation to be "merchant." His successor did not take over until April 1861, so it is very likely that Mr. Goddard was still at his Post Office job (probably in the General Mercantile) just before the Civil War broke out. Something to check from here: an enlistment for Alfred Goddard in the Union Army (my own cursory check revealed nothing, but a more thorough search might be more revealing - however, he was 42 in 1860 so this probably would not pan out).
Well, I hope I've given you some ideas for further research on your ancestors. I'll continue with some other types of examples in the posts to come. Best wishes in your roots pursuits.