Lot# 43 - Erivan Sale 2

  • Lot# : 43 Wells Fargo & Co. Express

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    Pony Express, St. Joseph. May 13 (1860), incredibly crisp and well-struck strike of the Running Pony oval handstamp on envelope, "Milton S. Latham U.S.S." free frank (government postage), addressed in his hand to "George Wallace/ Secretary to Mr. Downey/ Sacramento Cal." (California's Governor John Downey), also endorsed "Per Pony Express" in Latham's hand, additional ms "Paid $5.00", payment of Pony Express fee written in another hand, with original contents datelined "Washington, May 8/60" entirely in Latham's hand (interesting letter including comments on the 1860 Democratic Convention in Charleston which, in the end, failed to nominate a candidate), envelope neatly opened at top, Extremely Fine in every respect and with a magnificent strike of the famed "Running Pony" handstamp; one of six Pony Express covers signed by Sen. Latham and the only one on which there was express fee charged; illustrated in Nathan & Boggs "The Pony Express" on page 10. rnThis cover left St. Joseph on May 13 and arrived by Pony Express at Sacramento on May 24 and is one of the earliest westbound Pony covers recorded. FKW Census W3; Trip WT-7.rnMilton Latham (1827-82), previously a member of the House of Representatives and collector for the Port of San Francisco, was elected Governor of California at age 32 as a Lecompton (pro-Southern) Democrat, and his election to the office of Governor was opposed by those who feared that he would make California a pro-slavery state. Two days after Latham took the oath of office, the legislature agreed to elect him to fill a vacancy in the U.S. Senate. Many believe that Latham ran for Governor because he wanted the available seat of Senator Broderick, who had been killed in a duel. When he took his seat in the Senate, Latham was its youngest member and served until 1863 but was unsuccessful in his bid for re-election. While there he was a strong supporter of the Pony Express and was one of the few individuals who could use the service free of charge.

    John Downey (1827-94) was born in Ireland and came to be California's Governor after serving just five days as Milton Latham's Lt. Governor.

    Provenance: Hall Collection (R.A. Siegel Sale 830, 2000)

    Thurston Twigg-Smith (R.A. Siegel Sale 979, 2009)

    Start Price : 75,000.00 USD
    Current Opening : 75,000.00 USD
    Hammer price : 160,000.00 USD