Western Expresses | R

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Western Expresses | R 2021-07-05T02:06:19+00:00

Western Expresses | R

Western Expresses Alphabetically

Western Expresses

Reticker’s Pony Express – Feb 18, 1871 to ~Apr 29, 1871

Chandler Reticker (sometimes erroneously reported as Charles) began a pony express Feb 18, 1871 from Salt Lake City to Little Cottonwood, the following week adding Bingham and East Canyon to his route. He connected with Wells, Fargo & Co. at Salt Lake City. An article in the Mar 18, 1871 Salt Lake City Herald Republican stated Reticker was adding stations for a second route to encompass Tintic, Camp Floyd, and Ophir. The Apr 29, 1871 Herald Republican made the last mention of Reticker’s celebrated (and apparently very short-lived) pony express.

Reticker's Pony Express to Salt Lake City

By Reticker’s. Poney. Express to Salt Lake City; exchanged with Wells, Fargo & Co. Salt Lake Cy U.T. Mar 10 (1871) to San Francisco. Merchants handstamp on verso “A. T. Green San Francisco. Mar 13, 1871”.

Pony Express Transcript announcement

Feb 18, 1871 Salt Lake City Herald Republican announcement of Reticker’s pony express.

Western Expresses

Reynolds & Company – Jan, 1850 to Oct 7, 1851

Reynolds & Co. Express began in Jan, 1850 with Angevine Reynolds, A. S. Reynolds, J. P. D. Wilkins as partners. They operated their route to the mines south of the Stanislaus River, connecting with Todd & Bryan’s Express at Stockton, and through them with Adams & Co. in San Francisco for destinations east. Reynolds & Co. later connected with Todd & Co. after Todd & Bryan’s demise in Jul, 1850, then ceased connecting with them altogether in Jun, 1851. A. H. Todd left Todd & Co.’s Express in Oct, 1851 and joined up with Reynolds & Co. to form Reynolds, Todd & Co.

Reynolds & Co Express to Jamestown (Tuolumne County) California

By un-identified private carrier from Washington, DC to Stockton; Forwarded by Reynolds & Co Express to Jamestown (Tuolumne County) California, with 1.00 pencil notation express fee. Enclosed letter transcribed below:

Dateline: Washington Nov. 28th, 1850

Dear Charly,

I have just got here – All are well at Somervale – and Old Jim Englishman rejoiced to hear from you by Capt. McGee’s letter – He has always appeared to take great interest in your welfare – It is on the eve of the Session of Congress [the 32nd United States Congress did not meet until Mar 4, 1851], what may be enacted, the Lord only can tell –

You shall hear from me again before long. –

I have rec’d a letter from Edward H. Whitney which gave me great satisfaction. –

This is written in a great hurry & you must excuse its unconnected appearance.

Wm. S.S.A.
To Chas. A. Atkinson, Esq.
California

Western Expresses

Reynolds & Company – Jan, 1850 to Oct 7, 1851

Reynolds & Co Express Sonora Stockton & San Francisco

By Reynolds & Co Express Sonora Stockton & San Francisco with their PAID handstamp. Carried by Reynolds from Sonora to San Francisco.

Reynolds & Co. Express Sacramento Transcript

Aug 19, 1850 Sacramento Transcript

Western Expresses

Reynolds, Todd & Co. – Oct 7, 1851 to Apr 22, 1852

Alexander H. Todd sold his interest in Todd & Co.’s Express on Oct 7, 1851 to his partners, E. W. Colt and L. W. Newell, at which time Todd joined Reynolds & Co. to form Reynolds, Todd & Co. They ran a daily line of stages between Stockton and Sonora, carrying their express, in addition to a daily express between Stockton, Mokelumne Hill, Double Springs, Carson’s Creek, and Angel’s Camp. They expanded their operations further by late 1851. Reynolds, Todd & Co. may have overextended themselves in the face of fierce competition from Adams & Co. They announced effective Apr 22, 1851 that the partnership of Angevine Reynolds, A. H. Todd, J. P. D. Wilkins, and Wm. H. Brown was dissolved, and that the express business would thereafter be conducted by C. A. Todd under the name Todd’s Express.

Reynolds, Todd & Co Express San Francisco with Not Paid to Stockton

Forwarded By Reynolds, Todd & Co Express San Francisco with Not Paid to Stockton. Folded business letter datelined March 19th, 1852. The US government did not require postage on privately carried mails until Aug 31, 1852.

Reynolds, Todd & Co Express Advertisement

Western Expresses

Reynolds, Todd & Co. – Oct 7, 1851 to Apr 22, 1852

Forwarded by Reynold's & Co. Express Columbia

Forwarded by Reynolds, Todd & Co. Express Columbia to San Francisco; by post office San Francisco Cal. May 3 (1852) to Bangor, Maine with 20 rate handstamp (double the unpaid 10¢ rate for distances >3000 miles).

Columbia in 1853

Columbia in 1853

Western Expresses

Reynolds, Todd & Co. – Oct 7, 1851 to Apr 22, 1852

Reynolds Todd & Co Express Stockton to Sonora

Forwarded by Reynolds Todd & Co Express Stockton to Sonora. Folded letter datelined Mar 29, 1852 transcribed below (spelling and punctuation uncorrected).

San Francisco Daily Evening Picayune

Oct 13, 1851 San Francisco Daily Evening Picayune

Western Expresses

Rhodes & Lusk’s Express – Mar/Apr, 1852 to Feb 17, 1854

James H. Rhodes and Hiram Lusk were the proprietors of Rhodes & Lusk’s Express, initially operating from San Francisco to Yreka, serving intermediate points, and by branch express to Oregon. Once Wells, Fargo & Co. opened their San Francisco and Sacramento offices in Jul, 1852, they connected with that firm in Sacramento versus running all the way in to San Francisco. Rhodes & Lusk’s Express continued to serve various points in the northern mines, Marysville, Weaverville, Yreka, Shasta, etc. In Feb, 1854, the partnership inexplicably dissolved, with Rhodes purchasing his partner’s interest, and the company became Rhodes & Co.’s Express.

Rhodes & Lusk's Express Weaverville with their PAID in oval handstamp to Sacramento

By Rhodes & Lusk’s Express Weaverville with their PAID in oval handstamp to Sacramento; exchanged with Wells Fargo & Cos Express Sacramento to a merchant in San Francisco. Docketing on verso Rec’d March 14/53.

Rhodes & Lusk's Express First Ad

First ad, Apr 19, 1852 Sacramento Daily Union

Dissolution of co-partnership notice

Dissolution notice, Feb 18, 1854 Shasta Courier

Western Expresses

Rhodes & Lusk’s Express – Mar/Apr, 1852 to Feb 17, 1854

 

Rhodes & Lusk's Express Shasta with Not Paid for delivery to Weaverville

By Gregory’s Express Office San Francisco to Shasta; exchanged with Rhodes & Lusk’s Express Shasta with Not Paid for delivery to Weaverville with $1.00 express rate due by addressee.

Map of Gregory's Express to Shasta in blue, Rhodes & Lusk's Express to Weaverville in red

Gregory’s Express to Shasta in blueRhodes & Lusk’s Express to Weaverville in red

Western Expresses

Rhodes & Lusk’s Express – Mar/Apr, 1852 to Feb 17, 1854

Mail Stage Office dated Oct 8, 1852
By Rhodes & Lusk Express Shasta & San Francisco with F (free) on folded letter from Mail Stage Office dated Oct 8, 1852 to Cottonwood.
Mail Stage Office dated Oct 8, 1852

J. A. Marsin Esq
Dear Sir
Annexed please find statement of balance of fare to books, which our agent neglected to collect on the departure of the stage from this place,

  One seat to Cottonwood $22.00
  Credit Cash on same $10.00
  Balance $12.00

By forwarding the above amount to our agent, Mr. Kellogg, at Colusa you will much oblige
Your Obdt svts
Mess Bather & Co.

Western Expresses

Rhodes & Co.’s Express – Feb, 1854 to Jul, 1855

James M. Rhodes purchased Hiram Lusk’s interest in Rhodes & Lusk’s Express in Feb, 1854, changing the name to Rhodes & Co.’s Express. James’ brother, George Rhodes, and his uncle, Jesse Rhodes positions of responsibility in the firm. The primary route was from Sacramento to Marysville, Shasta, Yreka, and on to Jacksonville (Oregon Territory), with a branch route to Weaverville. They connected with Wells, Fargo & Co. at Sacramento. On Jul 2, 1855 James M. Rhodes sold his express to the newly-formed partnership of Jesse Rhodes and Cornelius S. Whitney, forming Rhodes & Whitney’s Express.

Rhodes & Co. Express Shasta to Sacramento

By Rhodes & Co. Express Shasta to Sacramento, and although not marked as such, exchanged with Wells Fargo for carriage to San Francisco.

First ad, Mar 4, 1854 Shasta Courier

First ad, Mar 4, 1854 Shasta Courier

Western Expresses

Rhodes & Whitney’s Express – Jul, 1855 to Dec, 1855 

Jesse M. Rhodes sold Rhodes & Co.’s Express to his uncle, Jesse Rhodes, and San Francisco capitalist, Cornelius S. Whitney, in July of 1855, forming what became Rhodes & Whitney’s Express. The route extended from Sacramento to Marysville, Shasta, Weaverville, Crescent City, Scott Bar, Yreka, and Jacksonville (Oregon Territory). They connected with G. H. Wines & Co.’s Express at Sacramento. In Dec, 1855, Whitney sold his interest in the company to his partner, who then carried on as Jesse Rhodes & Co.’s Express until Feb, 1857 when the failure of the Sacramento City Bank precipitated the demise of his express (the last of the Rhodes Expresses).

Rhodes & Whitney's Express Yreka with oval PAID handstamp to Sacramento

By Rhodes & Whitney’s Express Yreka with oval PAID handstamp to Sacramento; exchanged with Wines at Sacramento for delivery to San Francisco with G. H. Wines & Co. Express San Francisco handstamp.

Yreka Weekly Union Ad

Jan 26, 1856 Yreka Weekly Union ad still showing “Rhodes & Whitney’s Express” after Whitney sold his share in the partnership to Jesse Rhodes in Dec, 1855.

Western Expresses

River Express – 1878 to 1921

River Express existed under a variety of proprietors as a freight hauler, storage company, and package forwarder. It operated primarily between Stockton and San Francisco but at times had agents in Alameda, Antioch, Benicia, Berkeley, Napa, Oakland, Petaluma, and Vallejo. They carried letters as an express service from 1893 and 1901, using Whitney as an agent in the east bay towns of Alameda, Berkley and Oakland.

By River Express Co. Stockton, Cal. Mar 17 1893 to San Francisco.

By River Express Co. Stockton, Cal. Mar 17 1893 to San Francisco. The Postal Act of Aug 31, 1852 required equivalent US postage on privately carried mails. The 2¢ postage rate became effective Oct 1, 1883, having been reduced from 3¢.

River Express Company - Stockton Record

Apr 8, 1895 Stockton Record (Vol. 1, No. 1)

Western Expresses

Robinson’s (W. H.) Express – Aug, 1851 to 1857 

William H. Robinson was the proprietor of this express, which ran from Sacramento to various locations in Calaveras County, including Mokelumne Hill and Murphy’s Camp. He began his express in Aug, 1851, based on his biography, having had a partner named Clark for a while. The 1852 California State Census listed him as “Letter Carrier.” Robinson quit the letter express business in 1857, again based on his biography.

By post office from Caledonia Me June 18/52 due 10 to Sacramento City

By post office from Caledonia Me June 18/52 due 10 to Sacramento City; delivered by W. H. Robinson Express Agent SacramentoThe unpaid rate for distances greater than 3000 miles was 10¢ effective Jul 1, 1851. Exceptionally clear strike of this handstamp express marking. Folded letter datelined June 12, 1852 transcribed, in part, below.

Caledonia Me June 18/52
…We heard from the emigrants at Fort Kearny grass short & colera & small pox on behind the feaver fer next spring is high even friend Moon talks of going in 53…

Western Expresses

Rowe & Co. – Mar, 1855 to Oct, 1856
W. F. Rowe’s Express – 1858

Three Rowe brothers were involved in the express business in Trinity and Shasta Counties between 1852 and 1856: Edwin A. Rowe, William F. Rowe, and Charles E. Rowe. Edwin had been Weaverville agent for Cram, Rogers & Co. and then Pacific Express Co., operating his own express under Pacific, which connected with them at Shasta. In Dec, 1855, Edwin Rowe sold his business to brother William. F. W. Blake then purchased Rowe & Co.’s Express in Oct, 1856, absorbing it into his already existing express company. William Rowe joined Blake & Co.’s Express as messenger, until he left in 1858 to form his own express. But, he did not operate independently for long, as on Sep 18, 1858 the Weaverville paper noted that Greenhood & Newbauer had purchased W. F. Rowe’s express business.

Rowe & Co Weaver PAID from Weaverville to Shasta

By Rowe & Co Weaver PAID from Weaverville to Shasta; by Pacific Express Shasta Jul 10 to San Jose. One of only two known examples of this Rowe marking, and one of only three known Rowe & Co.’s Express covers in total.

Top Part of Ad from 1855 Weaverville Trinity Times

Top part of ad from Dec 22, 1855 Weaverville Trinity Times

Western Expresses

Rumrill & Company – Aug, 1853 to Apr, 1855

Frank Rumrill began in the express business as Gregory’s agent in Marysville from Feb, 1851 to Oct 1, 1852 when he switched his allegiance to Wells Fargo and became their agent in Marysville. Ten months later, Wells Fargo enfranchised Rumrill to branch out on his own, beginning his own express in August, 1853 with its headquarters in Downieville. He bought out Beck’s Express on Jul 1 1854, which extended his line north from Downieville into the Gibsonville Ridge area. Rumrill sold out to Wells, Fargo & Co. in April, 1855.

By post office Franklin Mills O. Mar 6 (1854) with 10 (collect) via New York and Panama to Marysville

By post office Franklin Mills O. Mar 6 (1854) with 10 (collect) via New York and Panama to Marysville; by F. Rumrill & Co. Northern Express Connecting with Wells Fargo & Co. for delivery. As this cover is addressed to Frank Rumrill, he probably picked it up in Marysville. Enclosed letter datelined Franklin (Ohio) March 6, 1854 transcribed, in part, as follows: Frank, why do I not hear from you…I wrote to you two letters in December and one on the 8th of February. I have heard that there was a mail lost on the Golden Gate. My letters may have been in that mail…Henrietta

Rumrill & Co. First Ad Sep 13 1853

First ad, Sep 23, 1853 Marysville Daily Herald

Western Expresses

Rumrill & Company – Aug, 1853 to Apr, 1855

F. Rumrill & Co's Northern Express Connecting with Wells, Fargo & Co. from Marysville to San Francisco

circa May, 1854 by F. Rumrill & Co’s Northern Express Connecting with Wells, Fargo & Co. from Marysville to San Francisco; delivered In care of Adams & Co Express office in San Francisco, per sender’s notation.

Rumrill First Ad in San Francisco Pacific

First ad in this paper, Dec 9, 1853 San Francisco Pacific

Western Expresses

Rumrill & Company – Aug, 1853 to Apr, 1855

F. Rumrill & Co's Express Downieville likely to Marysville

By F. Rumrill & Co’s Express Downieville likely to Marysville, where it was exchanged with Wells Fargo. It is not clear how the letter was then conveyed on to Ohio, as no postal markings are evident. Enclosed letter datelined Downieville Dec 5, 1854 from Frank Rumrill to his girlfriend, Henrietta Stewart, in part: …Yours of Oct 3, is just received…Am sorry I cannot set a certain time for my return home, but will assure you that just so soon as I can arrange my business I will leave. The prospects are brighter now than ever before, and I have sanguine hopes of being able to get off soon…My health is now good, although my lungs are still slightly affected…

Rumrill First Ad in Downieville Sierra Citizen

First ad in this paper, Feb 11, 1854 Downieville Sierra Citizen

Western Expresses

Rumrill & Company – Aug, 1853 to Apr, 1855

F. Rumrill & Cos Express Fosters Bar to Sacramento City

By F. Rumrill & Cos Express Fosters Bar to Sacramento City. Filed June 19th 1854 docket. This is the only known example of a Rumrill Fosters Bar marking.

Ad from the Sep 3, 1854 issue of the San Francisco Golden Era.

Ad from the Sep 3, 1854 issue of the San Francisco Golden Era.

Western Expresses

Rutherford & Co.’s Express – Nov, 1866 to Jul, 1867

R. H. Rutherford continued to operate an express after the breakup of Wheeler, Rutherford & Company effective Dec 1, 1866. Rutherford & Co.’s Express shifted its based from Marysville to Oroville and pushed his express into Plumas County and on to Susanville. The Jul 13, 1867 Quincy Union reported that Rutherford purchased one-half interest in Whiting & Co.’s Express, with the name remaining as such.

Rutherford & Co.'s Express in their printed frank envelope to Oroville

By Rutherford & Co.’s Express in their printed frank envelope to Oroville; by Wells Fargo & Co. Oroville Aug 7 (1867) for delivery to San Francisco. Docketed on verso Aug 1867. One of only five known covers from Rutherford & Co.’s Express.

Item from the Marysville Daily Appeal of Dec 19, 1866

Item from the Marysville Daily Appeal of Dec 19, 1866 indicating dissolution of Wheeler, Rutherford & Co. effective Dec 1, 1866.

Latest mention of any kind of Rutherford & Co. Express

The latest mention of any kind of Rutherford & Co.’s Express, from the Marysville Daily Appeal dated Oct 10, 1867

Western Expresses Alphabetically