Western Expresses | H

Submitted by: The Red Cloud Collection

Western Expresses | H 2021-07-29T03:02:50+00:00

Western Expresses | H

Western Expresses Alphabetically

Western Expresses

Hall & Allen’s Express – 1857 to 1859

Edward M. Hall and Benjamin C. Allen began their partnership in the banking and gold dust business in Jan, 1857. They had offices in Auburn, Dutch Flat, and Todds Valley. Their new building in Dutch Flat was described as being “Hall and Allen’s Express Office” in May, 1858. However, they are thought to have begun their express business in the summer/fall of 1857. Wells Fargo opened an office in Dutch Flat in 1859, at which time Hall & Allen became their agents. Hall & Allen’s Express likely ceased operation in late 1859 as Wells, Fargo & Co. took a stronger hold of the express business.

Hall & Allen's Dutch Flat Express from the mining region around Dutch Flat

By Hall & Allen’s Dutch Flat Express from the mining region around Dutch Flat; connecting with Wells, Fargo & Company in Dutch Flat for delivery to San Francisco. One of six known examples from this short-lived express.

Placer Bank Auburn and Todd's Valley, Exchange for sale drawn by Drexel Sather & Church

Jan 17, 1857 Auburn Placer Times ad for Hall & Allen’s banking business. No ads are known for their express business, although they are shown as agents of Pacific Express in this ad.

Western Expresses

Harrier’s Express – May, 1864 to Aug, 1865

Daniel Webster Harrier was the proprietor of D. W. Harrier’s Express, which operated from Nevada City (where he connected with Wells, Fargo & Co.) to Moore’s Flat, Woolsey’s Flat, Orleans Flat, Lake City and North Bloomfield. The earliest reference to his express is from the Nevada City Transcript Jul 19, 1864; however, the unique Type 2 printed frank usage has a Nevada City May 1, 1864 postmark. In late Aug, 1865, Harrier sold his stage and express line to Philip & Gregory, who operated over the same route beginning Sep 1, 1865.

D. W. Harrier's Express PAID from the mining camps to Nevada City

By D. W. Harrier’s Express PAID from the mining camps to Nevada City; exchanged with Wells Fargo Nevada Jun 30 (likely 1865) to San Francisco. One of only two reported examples of this Type 6 purple printed frank.

D. W. Harrier's Express PAID from the mining camps to Nevada City

By D. W. Harrier’s Express PAID from the mining camps to Nevada City; exchanged with Wells Fargo & Co. Nevada Apr 12 (1865) to San Francisco. The only known examples of the Type 4 printed  frank.

Western Expresses

Harrier’s Express – May, 1864 to Aug, 1865

D. W. Harrier's Express. PAID from the mining camps to Nevada City

By D. W. Harrier’s Express. PAID from the mining camps to Nevada City; by Wells Fargo & Co. Nevada May 4 (1865) to San Francisco. One of only two reported examples of the Type 8 red printed frank

D. W. Harrier's Express PAID from the mining camps to Nevada City

By D. W. Harrier’s Express PAID from the mining camps to Nevada City; by post office from Nevada City, Cal May 1, 1864 to Brunswick, Maine. The only recorded example of this Type 2 printed frank.

Western Expresses

Harrison’s Susanville & Goose Lake Express – 1872

Harrison operated his California express is Siskiyou County between Susanville and Goose Lake in 1872.

Harrison's Susanville & Goose Lake Express Company PAID likely from the Goose Lake area to Adinville

By Harrison’s Susanville & Goose Lake Express Company PAID likely from the Goose Lake area to Adinville; by post office from Adinville Sept 1872 to Marysville. Adinville (Adin) was on the route between Goose Lake and Susanville. The only reported example from this express.

Map of route between Goose Lake and Susanville

Western Expresses

J. Hawes & Co.’s Express – Dec, 1854 to Mar, 1856

J. Hawes and Co’s San Francisco & New York Express was formed by Joseph Hawes and Charles Lumbard on Dec 13, 1854. They advertised for the Vanderbilt Independent Line steamer Cortes that departed on Mar 24, 1855 (cover below carried on this trip). Their last ad appeared on Mar 17, 1856.

Hawes & Co.'s Express S.F. & N.Y. out of the mails from San Francisco to New York with double 6¢ postage paid by four 3¢ 1851 issue adhesives.

By Hawes & Co.’s Express S.F. & N.Y. out of the mails from San Francisco to New York with double 6¢ postage paid by four 3¢ 1851 issue adhesives.

  • Vanderbilt Line steamer Cortez, depart San Francisco Mar 24, 1855, arrive San Juan del Sur Apr 6
  • Two days across Nicaragua to San Juan del Norte
  • Vanderbilt Line steamer Northern Light, depart San Juan del Norte Apr 8, arrive NYApr 15, 1855
  • N. York Steamship Apr 15 (1855) entered US mails for delivery to Connecticut
Mar 22, 1855 advertisement from the San Francisco Daily Alta

Mar 22, 1855 advertisement from the San Francisco Daily Alta for the sailing of the steamer Cortez via Nicaragua

Western Expresses

Hawley & Co.’s Express – Nov, 1849 to Nov, 1850

T. R. Hawley began in the express business as a partner in Weld & Co.’s Express in 1849. In Nov, 1849 Hawley bought out his associates in Weld Co.’s Express and changed the name to Hawley & Co.’s Express. Initially, he ran between San Francisco and Sacramento, with a stop at Benicia, later adding Fremont, Nicholas, Eliza City, and Marysville. Hawley connected with Adams & Co. in San Francisco. He added John M. Freeman (who had left Adams & Co.) as a partner in Jul, 1850, around the same time he acquired Angle & Co.’s Express. Hawley sold his interest in the firm to John M. Freeman, based on an announcement of Nov 11, 1850. Hawley & Co.’s Express operated through the end of Nov, 1850, after which it transitioned to Freeman & Co.’s Express.

Hawley & C's Express with From Sacramento to San Francisco

Folded business letter datelined Sac City Sept 23 1850 carried by Hawley & C’s Express with From Sacramento to San Francisco.

Hawley & Co's Express Sacramento Placer

Jan 19, 1850 Sacramento Placer Times

Sacramento Transcript 1850

Nov 14, 1850 Sacramento Transcript

Western Expresses

Hawley & Co.’s Express – Nov, 1849 to Nov, 1850

Hawley & C's Express from San Francisco to Sacramento City by steamboat

Folded letter from New York Feby 14 1850 carried privately “By Mr Huff” via Panama to San Francisco. Letter mentions Mr. Huff takes the steamer tomorrow, but there is no record of a Feb 15, 1850 steamer departure from NY to Chagres. The writer likely had the date incorrect, such that the waybill would be:

  • USMSC Ohio, depart New York Feb 13, 1850, arrive Chagres Mar 9, 1850
  • Across the isthmus of Panama via mule and canoe from Mar 9 to Mar 23, 1850
  • PMSC Tennessee, depart Panama Mar 23, 1850, arrive San Francisco Apr 14, 1850
  • circa Apr 15, 1850 by Hawley & C’s Express from San Francisco to Sacramento City by steamboat
Dateline New York Feb 14, 1850
Mr Huff…takes the steamer tomorrow for Chagres & California he will take this with others to you. I told him he could hand them to Mr Hawley Express…I was much pleased to hear from you that you was well and had not gone to the mines. I am very mutch obliged to you for the Gold. I will send the letter and the Gold to your Brother…A. Littlefield
Steamer Senator at Sacramento City.

Steamer Senator at Sacramento City.

Western Expresses

Hawley & Co.’s Express – Nov, 1849 to Nov, 1850

Hawley & Co.'s Express from San Francisco to Sacramento City

By Hawley & Co.’s Express from San Francisco to Sacramento City on folded business letter datelined San Francisco Oct 14, 1850. Enclosed business letter transcribed, in part, below.

Dateline San Francisco Oct 14, 1850
…We send you by the “Hartford” one bag Pepper weighing 107 # @ 30c. We were unable Saturday to get the Beans from the vessel – could not get them off in time today – they will go up tomorrow without fail. The coffee was sold before we received your reply. There are no crates of crockery here of the description you mention…Boardman Bacon & Co., Cor. Montg & Sacs Streets

Sep 11, 1850 ad from the Alta California. By the end of November 1849 regular steamboat service connected San Francisco and Sacramento City. Service soon was extended north to Marysville. This major steamboat trunk line was dominated by two primary operators, the People’s Line and the Union Line. Hawley & Co. had exclusive rights to carry express matter on People’s Line while Mumby & Co. used Union Line steamboats.

Sep 11, 1850 ad from the Alta California

Western Expresses

Hawley & Co.’s Express – Nov, 1849 to Nov, 1850

San Francisco Daily Alta California Jun 8, 1850

San Francisco Daily Alta California
Jun 8, 1850

San Francisco Daily Alta California Jul 15, 1850

San Francisco Daily Alta California
Jul 15, 1850

San Francisco Daily Pacific News
Sep 2, 1850

San Francisco Daily Pacific News Sep 2, 1850

Western Expresses

Haydon’s Express – Aug to Nov, 1855 and Jan to Mar, 1857

Stephen Clayton Haydon, a merchant in Petaluma, established his express to handle mail in Sonoma and Marin County towns north of San Francisco, as listed on his printed frank. Haydon had been agent for both Pacific and Wells, Fargo & Co.’s Expresses, as well as advertising an express from Aug 18, 1855 to Nov 10, 1855. Haydon’s Pioneer Express again advertised in the Petaluma Sonoma County Journal from Jan 30, 1857 to Feb 27, 1857. The Apr 17, 1857 issue contained the first ad for American Express, which noted that they had purchased “Mr. S. C. Haydon’s list.”

PAID Haydon's Express from one of the locations noted on the printed frank to Petaluma in Feb, 1856
  • PAID Haydon’s Express from one of the locations noted on the printed frank to Petaluma in Feb, 1857
  • By Pacific Express Petaluma to San Francisco
  • PMSC John L. Stephens, depart San Francisco Feb 20, arrive Panama Mar 5
  • One day across the isthmus of Panama via the railroad
  • USMSC George Law, depart Aspinwall Mar 6, arrive New York Mar 16
  • By government mails from New York Mar 16 (1857) to Washington, D.C.
Petaluma Sonoma County Journal Ad

Petaluma Sonoma County Journal ad from Aug 18, 1855 issue (Volume 1, Number 1) which ran through Nov 10, 1855

Petaluma Sonoma County Journal Ad from 1855 to 1857

Petaluma Sonoma County Journal ad from Jan 30, 1857 which ran through Feb 27, 1855

Western Expresses

Haywood Express Company – 1869? or 1871?

Little is known about this express company, except for information from the lone surviving cover. From that cover, below, we can assume they operated in the East Bay (Hayward, formerly known as Haywood, is in Alameda County) and connected with Pacific Union Express Company, possibly in Oakland. The latter express company operated from Jul 1, 1868 to December 1869 when they were absorbed by Wells Fargo.

Haywood Express Co., connecting with Pacific Union Express Co. (probably in Oakland) to San Francisco

By Haywood Express Co., connecting with Pacific Union Express Co. (probably in Oakland) to San Francisco. Only known example from this express company.

San Leandro & Haywood Advertisement

May 9, 1871 Oakland Daily Transcript advertisement for the San Leandro & Haywood Express. It is not known if this express is synonymous with the “Haywood Express Co.” If so, then the leftover Pacific Union Express Co. franks were simply overprinted by the Haywood Express Co. to avoid losing the 3¢ government postage and the cover on this page would have been carried from San Leandro to Haywood by this express, then turned over to Wells, Fargo & Co. for delivery in San Francisco.

Western Expresses

Hervey’s Express – Nov, 1858 to Apr, 1860

Samuel Hervey began his express in Nov, 1858 by purchasing the route (former proprietor not identified) from Nevada City “to the principal points in Little York township” passing through Camden, Red Dog, Waloupa, Little York, Liberty Hill, and Remington Hill. Hervey sold his express to James McLearn in Apr, 1860, after only 17 months in the express business.

S. Hervey's Express Nevada, Cal to Little York

By Langton’s from Monte Cristo to Nevada City; exchanged with S. Hervey’s Express Nevada, Cal to Little York. Enclosed letter datelined Monte Cristo June 29th/59 transcribed, in part, as follows: …We have built a Shanty and have just begun to keep house in true California Style. This place is only 5 miles from Downieville and I expect will be some day a big town…Jane is most tired out with her journey and 30 miles of mule riding…Yours truly…G. W. Greeley.

One of only two known examples of Hervey’s Express usages, the other being on a newspaper.

Nevada City Democrat 1858 info

Oct 22, 1858 Nevada City Nevada Democrat

Grass Valley Nevada National Fragment 1860

Apr 14, 1860 Grass Valley Nevada National

Western Expresses

Hinckley & Co’s. Express. – 1860 to May 11, 1861

Hinckley & Company’s Express was founded in 1860 by C.S. Hinckley and John Sowers. The express operated among the mining towns, via Denver City and Fort Kearney, to Omaha City, Nebraska Territory. The company was purchased by the Central Overland, California & Pike’s Peak Express Company on May 11, 1861.

Hinckley & Co.'s Express, Denver City. Dec 12, 1860 from Denver City to Central City, Kansas Territory

By Hinckley & Co.’s Express, Denver City. Dec 12, 1860 from Denver City to Central City, Kansas Territory (later Colorado). Manuscript notation “Paid” in pencil. Business letter enclosed from Denver City, K. T. Dec 10th, 1860.

Dateline Dec 10th, 1860
Denver City, K. T.
"Stagecoaching in the Mountains" from Harper's Weekly

“Stagecoaching in the Mountains” from Harper’s Weekly

Western Expresses

Hinckley & Co’s. Express. – 1860 to May 11, 1861

Hinckley & Co.'s Express Denver City Feb 25, 1860 to Saint Joseph, MO

By Hinckley & Co.’s Express Denver City Feb 25, 1860 to Saint Joseph, MO; by government mail from Saint Joseph MO Mar 5 to St. Louis. This type printed frank, with the box beneath the scroll is unreported in Thomas’ book and unique.

Hinckley & Co.'s Express Denver City Feb 18, 1861 to Saint Joseph, MO

By Hinckley & Co.’s Express Denver City Feb 18, 1861 to Saint Joseph, MO; by government mail from Saint Joseph MO Feb 28 to Stillwater, Minn. Only the second reported example of this type printed frank, per Thomas’ book.

Western Expresses

J. W. Hoag & Co’s Contra Costa Express – Oct, 1855 to Sep, 1858

J. W. Hoag, John Bamber, and Charles Gable purchased the Contra Costa Express from R. T. Lockwood in Oct, 1855, adding W. F. Herre’s Contra Costa Express in Nov, 1855. John Bamber had left and started his own express when J. W. Hoag advertised for the sale of his express in Sep, 1858. Hoag’s attempt to find a buyer (to challenge Bamber’s dominance of the area) was unsuccessful and he exited the business on his own.

J. W. Hoag & Co. Contra-Costa Express San Francisco to Warm Springs, Cal

By J. W. Hoag & Co. Contra-Costa Express San Francisco to Warm Springs, Cal with Collect 25¢ express fee notation. Docket Dec 5, 1856 indicating either the date of the contents (now missing) or receipt by the addressee.

San Francisco Daily Alta California advertisement: Nov 25, 1855
San Francisco Daily Alta California advertisement: Oct 15, 1858

San Francisco Daily Alta California advertisements: Nov 11, 1855 (left) showing the earliest ad for J. W. Hoag & Co.’s newly formed express; and Sep 19, 1858 (right) in which J. W. Hoag advertises for the sale of his express and newspaper business. Interestingly, he asks that inquiries be directed to J. Bamber & Co. or  W. K. Bacon, his two primary competitors in the region.

Western Expresses

J. W. Hoag & Co’s Contra Costa Express – Oct, 1855 to Sep, 1858

J. W. Hoag’s & Co. San Francisco & Contra Costa Express

By J. W. Hoag’s & Co. San Francisco & Contra Costa Express with matching boxed PAID from Haywards to San Francisco. Haywards is not shown in the 1857 map of Alameda County by Horace A. Higley.

Alameda County Map 1878

Portion of 1878 Alameda County map, showing location of Haywards, across the Bay from the city of San Francisco.

Western Expresses

Hoffman & Co.’s Express – Dec, 1849 to Oct, 1851

Frank J. Hoffman was the senior partner in each of the three Hoffman Expresses which operated in Northern California between Dec, 1849 and Oct, 1851: Hoffman & Co. Express with an unknown partner (Dec, 1849 to sometime in 1850), Hoffman & Page’s Express (Sep, 1850 to Jan, 1851), Hoffman & Little’s Express (Jan/Feb, 1851 to Sep/Oct, 1851). Their primary route was from Sacramento up the American River to the South and North Forks of the American, with an additional route from Nevada City to Rough & Ready, Grass Valley, Newtown, Bridgeport, Sacramento and San Francisco. Hoffman & Co. sold out to George E. Clarke, acting on behalf of Gregory’s Express.

Apr 1, 1851 list of letters remaining at Hoffman & Little's Express

Apr 1, 1851 list of letters remaining at Hoffman & Little’s Express to be collected at Gregory & Co. office.

Forwarded by Hoffman & Co. Express from Sacramento City to the mines

By post office Drakeville, Iowa May 29 (1850) with 40 (due) rate notation to Sacramento City; Forwarded by Hoffman & Co. Express from Sacramento City to the mines.

Western Expresses

Hogan & Company’s Express – 1870 to Jul, 1874

John Hogan was the proprietor of Hogan & Co.’s North San Juan and Humbug Express. Hogan is listed as a “Stage Proprietor” and North San Juan resident in the 1870 census. The earliest ad for his “stage and express line” is from the Aug 3, 1872 North San Juan War Club, noting that he connected with Wells, Fargo & Co. at North San Juan. The North San Juan Times carried Hogan’s last express ad on Jul 4, 1874. He sold his stage and express line to Sherman & Co., whose first ad appeared on Jul 25, 1874.

Hogan & Co.'s North San Juan and Humbug Express into North San Juan

By Hogan & Co.’s North San Juan and Humbug Express into North San Juan; US Post Office North San Juan Cal. Mar 18 to San Jose.

Hogan & Co.'s North San Juan and Humbug Express into North San Juan

By Hogan & Co.’s North San Juan and Humbug Express into North San Juan; exchanged with Wells, Fargo & Co. North San Juan Oct 23 to San Francisco.

Western Expresses

Holladay Overland Mail & Express Co. – 1862 to Nov 1, 1866

Ben Holladay started his overland express from Atchison, Kansas to Placerville, California in 1862. He extended his lines in 1864, going from Salt Lake City, Utah to Walla Walla, Washington, with branches into Idaho, Montana and Colorado. In the spring of 1866, he bought out Butterfield’s Overland Stage and Dispatch Company. Ben Holladay, “the stagecoach king”, sold out his empire to Wells, Fargo & Company on Nov 1, 1866.

Holladay Overland Mail and Express Company to Omaha

By Holladay Overland Mail and Express Company to Omaha; by US post office from Omaha, Neb Jun 28 (1866) to Vermont. This type Omaha postmark is known used from July 29, 1865 to June 21, 1867, being replaced by a device with “Omaha City” in the dial, making this one of the few Holladay franked envelopes that can be documented as used during the period prior to the Nov 1, 1866 sale to Wells, Fargo & Co.

Holladay Overland Mail and Express Company office and stagecoach

Western Expresses

Holland, Morley & Co.’s Express – Sep 1, 1862 to Jul 1863

Charles J. Morley and Homer B. Holland purchased Francis’ Express on Mar 3, 1862, forming Morley & Holland’s Express. Based out of LaPorte, they served numerous camps throughout Sierra and Plumas Counties, connecting with Everts Wilson & Co. at Marysville and Whiting & Co. at Quincy. They sold their express route to William Ford Jun 14, 1862, who operated his express over the same routes they had. Holland and Morley re-entered the express business a little over two months later when, on Sep 1, 1862, they purchased Everts, Wilson & Co.’s “LaPorte and Plumas Express” and started Holland, Morley & Co.’s Express, connecting at Marysville with Wells, Fargo & Co. and at LaPorte with Whiting & Co. They were succeeded by Holland & Wheeler’s Express in Jul, 1863.

Holland, Morley & Co.'s Express La Porte, Cal. to Marysville

By Whiting’s & Co.’s Feather River Express to La Porte; exchanged with Holland, Morley & Co.’s Express La Porte, Cal. to Marysville; by Wells, Fargo & Co. Marysville Oct [xx] (1862) with Wells, Fargo & Co,’s Express from Marysville label to San Francisco. Triple conjunctive express usage.

Morley & Holland's Express Ad

The earliest Morley, Holland & Co. ad, from the May 31, 1862 Downieville Sierra County News

Western Expresses

Holland, Morley & Co.’s Express – Sep 1, 1862 to Jul, 1863

Holland, Morley & Co's Express in their Type 1 printed frank to Marysville

By Holland, Morley & Co’s Express in their Type 1 printed frank to Marysville; exchanged with Wells Fargo & Co. Marysville Sep 12 (1862) for delivery to San Francisco. One of only five known examples of this printed frank.

By Whiting & Co.’s Feather River Express. PAID. in their printed frank to Marysville

By Whiting & Co.’s Feather River Express. PAID. in their printed frank to Marysville; exchanged with Holland, Morley & Co.’s Express Marysville, Cal. for delivery to Bidwell’s Bar.

Western Expresses

Holland & Wheeler’s Express – Jul, 1863 to Oct 1, 1863

Charles H. Morley sold his interest of Holland, Morley & Co.’s Express to Simeon (Sam) Wheeler in Jul, 1862, thereafter being Holland & Wheeler’s Express. They had principal offices at LaPorte and Marysville and operated over the same basic routes as their predecessor company, connecting with Wells, Fargo & Co. at Marysville and Whiting & Co. at Quincy. Holland & Wheeler’s Express operated for a little more than two months, with Holland selling out his interest to Wheeler effective Oct 1, 1863.

Holland & Wheeler's Express to Marysville

By Holland & Wheeler’s Express to Marysville; by Wells Fargo & Co. Marysville Mar 31 (1865) to Atchison; by post office Atchison Kas. May 11 ’65 to Wisconsin. Docketed Mar 25 1865 check $576 gold. Type 1 printed frank used during the Wheeler & Rutherford’s Express period.

Holland & Wheeler's Daily Express with light Holland, Morley & Co. Express LaPorte Cal handstamp

By Holland & Wheeler’s Daily Express Type 4 printed frank with light Holland, Morley & Co. Express LaPorte Cal handstamp. Half of paste-up with July 28th, 1863 docket.

Western Expresses

Hopkinson’s Express – Mar, 1862 to late 1868/early 1869

In Mar, 1862, Emerson Bennett Hopkinson purchased Durgan’s express route that ran from Nevada City into the Dutch Flat area with service to Hunt’s Hill, Red Dog, and Little York. In Jun, 1864, he sold the route to J. A. Stone, but repurchased it Feb, 1865. Hopkinson established another route in Jun, 1864 on the Dutch Flat and Washoe Road. He connected with Wells Fargo at both Nevada City and Dutch Flat. Hopkinson is thought to have ceased operating sometime in late 1868 or early 1869.

Hopkinson's Express PAID into Dutch Flat

By Hopkinson’s Express PAID Type 6 printed frank into Dutch Flat; by Wells Fargo & Co. Dutch Flat Jan 5 to Oroville.

Hopkinson's Express PAID into Nevada City, California

By Hopkinson’s Express PAID Type 4 printed frank into Nevada City, California. Docketing at left from Dec 25, 1865.

Western Expresses

Hopkinson’s Express – Mar, 1862 to late 1868/early 1869

Hopkinson's Express PAID Nevada, Red Dog, You Bet & Dutch Flat into Dutch Flat

By Hopkinson’s Express PAID Nevada, Red Dog, You Bet & Dutch Flat into Dutch Flat; by Wells Fargo & Co. Dutch Flat Jan 6 to Oroville. The only known example of the Type 11 printed frank.

Nedava & Dutch Flat Express Transcript

Sep 7, 1862 Nevada City Daily Transcript

Hopkinson's Daily Express Sacramento Daily Union

Jul 20, 1866 Sacramento Daily Union

Western Expresses

Horn’s Tri-Weekly Express – May, 1874 to Jan, 1877

The May 23, 1874 Yreka Union reported that “Dave Horn is now proprietor of the Yreka and Scott Bar Express,” with tri-weekly service from Yreka to Scott Bar, and return the following day via Indian Creek, Fort Jones, McAdams Creek and Deadwood. An article of May 27, 1874 noted that Horn’s express was under the management of Lavinia Tickner, perhaps indicating that Tickner was a partner in the business. The Jan 27, 1877 Yreka Union reported “David Horn has sold his interest in the Scott Bar and Yreka Express to F. L. Tickner, who now owns the entire business,” further reinforcing the possibility that Tickner was a partner prior to Horn’s sale.

Horn's Yreka, Fort Jones, and Scott River Tri-Weekly Express PAID to Yreka

By Horn’s Yreka, Fort Jones, and Scott River Tri-Weekly Express PAID to Yreka; exchanged with Wells, Fargo & Co. Yreka Dec 12 for delivery to San Francisco.

Horn's Express, Yreka Union 1874

May 23, 1874 Yreka Union

Dave Horn's Scott River Express Ad

First ad May 27, 1874 Yreka Union

Western Expresses

Hunter & Company – Feb, 1851 to Jun, 1854

Alexander Hunter was the principal proprietor of the first of the two Hunter & Co.’s Expresses, announced as a new express on Feb 5, 1851, serving the mining camps on the South, Middle, and North Forks of the American River. Hunter’s connected with at first with Gregory’s Express and later with Adams & Co.’s Express. Alexander Hunter left the firm in the spring of 1852 and departed for the Eastern States. The Jul 30, 1852 Sacramento Union noted Hunter’s return from the East, but also stated that eight individuals (none from the original company) were co-partners under the name of Hunter & Co.’s Express. Alexander Hunter became their agent at Placerville, and was the de-factor Wells, Fargo & Co. agent there as well. Hunter & Co.’s Express sold out to Wells, Fargo & Co., as announced in the Jul 15, 1854 Placerville Mountain Democrat, effective Jul 1, 1854.

Bowling Green, route By the way of New York via Panama to Sacramento City

Bowling Green, Mo. May 14 (1851) routed “By the way of New York,” via Panama, to Sacramento City; by Hunter & Co.’s Express from Sacramento to “Sp Bar Mill” (Spanish Bar) on the American River; 1.65 manuscript rate (40c postage due, plus $1.25 express fee).

  • BowlingGreen, Missouri, May 14, 1851 to New York
  • USMSC Cherokee depart New York May 26; arrive Havana June 1
  • USMSC Falcon depart Havana June 4; arrive Chagres June 9
  • Threedays transit of isthmus of Panama
  • PMSC Northerner depart Panama June 6; arrive San Francisco July 7
  • River steamerfrom San Francisco to Sacramento; arrive ~July 9
  • Hunter& ’s Express from Sacramento to Spanish Bar Mill
Sacramento Transcript Notice of Start of Hunter & Co.

Feb 5, 1851 Sacramento Transcript notice of start of Hunter & Co.’s Express, in reference to the news of Placerville.

Western Expresses

Hunter & Company – Feb, 1851 to Jun, 1854

Calaveras Chronicle News

Calaveras Chronicle Apr 24, 1852 delivered to the mines by Hunter & Co.’s Express

Western Expresses

Hunter & Company – Feb, 1851 to Jun, 1854

Hunter & Cos Express from Sacramento to Murderer's Bar

By post office Fairfield, Ct. Oct 24 (1851) with 10 (due) to Sacramento City; by Hunter & Cos Express to M.Bar (Murderer’s Bar), with Hunter’s manuscript notation 1.35 ($1.25 express fee, plus 10¢ postage due). The collect rate for distances over 3000 miles was reduced from 40¢ to 10¢ effective Jul 1, 1851.

New Express company, a second notice, Sacramento transcript

A second notice in the Feb 5, 1851 Sacramento Transcript announcing the start of Hunter & Co.’s Express.

Western Expresses

Hunter & Company – Feb, 1851 to Jun, 1854

Hunter & Cos Express Yankee Jim's to Yankee Jim's

Independence, Mo. Mar 13 with 10 (due) Via New York to Nevada City; by Hunter & Cos Express Yankee Jim’s to Yankee Jim’s. The collect rate for distances over 3000 miles was reduced from 40¢ to 10¢ effective Jul 1, 1851. The only known example of this Hunter’s Yankee Jim’s marking on a full cover.

Yankee Jim's in 1857

Yankee Jim’s in 1857

Western Expresses

Hunter & Company – Feb, 1851 to Jun, 1854

Hunter & Co's Express Mormon Island endorsed and delivered to Murderer's Bar

By post office Boston 23 Feb 6 cts (1852) PAID to San Francisco; forwarded to Mormon Island with Fd 5 (due) notation; by Hunter & Co’s Express Mormon Island endorsed and delivered to Murderer’s Bar with notations Murd Bar and 1.25 (express rate due). The prepaid rate for distances >3000 miles was 6¢, and the unpaid rate for distances <3000 miles was 5¢, from Jul 1, 1851 to Apr 1, 1855.

Murderer's Bar, from Harper's Weekly

Murderer’s Bar, from Harper’s Weekly

Western Expresses

Hunter & Company – Feb, 1851 to Jun, 1854

Hunter & Co. Express Mud Springs to San Francisco

By Hunter & Co.’s Express Mud Springs to San Francisco. The only reported genuine example of this marking.

Hunter & Co. Semi-Weekly Express

May 20, 1851 Sacramento Transcript advertisement for Hunter & Co.’s Semi- Weekly Express, listing “Mud Spring” as among those locations served.

Western Expresses

Hunter & Company – Feb, 1851 to Jun, 1854

Hunter & Cos Express Auburn from Sacramento

Avon, Me March 8 (1852) with Free E.M. Towle, P.M. to Sacramento City; Forwarded by Hunter & Cos Express Auburn from Sacramento “Received at Secret Diggings Ravine May 5th, 1852 D. Towle”, with Hunter’s manuscript notation New Castle 1.25 (express fee). One of only three known examples of this Hunter’s Auburn marking.

Daguerreotype of Auburn Ravine in 1852

Daguerreotype of Auburn Ravine in 1852

Western Expresses

Hunter & Company – Feb, 1851 to Jun, 1854

Hunter & Co's Express in their printed envelope to Placerville

By Hunter & Co’s Express in their printed envelope to Placerville; by post office Placerville Cal Mar 31 (ca1852) with 10 rate marking to Elkhart, Indiana. One of only two known examples of this printed frank.

Placerville (Hangtown) in 1852

Placerville (Hangtown) in 1852

Western Expresses Alphabetically