WAY-BILL. / CALIFORNIA AND OREGON UNITED STATES MAIL LINE. / PORTLAND AND YREKA.

NP: np (Oregon Stage Company?), 1867. Single sheet, 40 x 25 cm., folded in thirds. Printed way-bill, completed in manuscript, records departures and arrivals of the mail line on Monday, Aug. 26, 1867, E. Shepard, Driver, B. Whitehouse, Agent, E. Corbett, Supt. Verso contains a passenger list, and fares paid. Printed in blue ink, columns in red; creased from folding. A very good copy. The coach made eight stops between Portland and Yreka, and carried eleven passengers, male and female, to various destinations. Instructions to the drivers insisted on carefully recording each passenger's name only after they had paid, as "NO ERASURES on Way-Bill will be allowed!" There was an additional charge for baggage over thirty pounds, and drivers were to keep strict accounts of the money received. Several drivers were employed for the trip (a distance of some 300 miles, over several days), Shepard (also spelled Sheppard) was on the first leg to Salem, and six other men continued the trip, arriving in Yreka on Aug. 29. Item #59217

According to Edwin Culp's book, "Early Oregon Days," [Caxton Press, 1987. p.33], the U.S. Postal Service awarded a mail contract between Oregon and California to the Oregon Stage Company in the 1860's: "Each driver was instructed to keep a way-bill of his departures and arrivals, including the names of all passengers making the trip. This type of service continued until the railroad was in operation between the two states." Henry Winslow Corbett (1827-1903), the owner of the stage line later became a Senator from the state of Oregon.

Price: $375.00

See all items in Americana, Western Americana