John Creswell was born in Cecil County, Maryland, on 18th November, 1828. After graduating from Dickinson College, Carlisle, he studied law and was admitted to the bar in Baltimore in 1850.
In 1869 President Ulysses S. Grant appointed Creswell as his Postmaster General. After resigning in 1874 he served before the Alabama Claims Commission (1874-76) before resuming work as a lawyer. John Creswell died on 23rd December, 1891.