Wells Fargo & Co., Virginia City Pony Express, 25¢ Blue (143L8), vertical strip of three, margins mostly full to just slightly into frameline, used with three 3¢ Rose (65) and tied by two strikes of blue "Wells, Fargo & Co Virginia City N.T. Feb. 15" (1863) oval datestamp on buff legal-size paste-up cover to San Francisco, addressed to Wm. E. Wood, in care of Stanford Brothers, additional clear strike of datestamp with matching "PAID" in double-line oval handstamp, docketing at left indicates the heavy contents related to bids for a tunnel contract
Fine appearance; strip has small tear and toning at top, 3¢ stamps have small faults, cover edgewear and tears.
This is one of only two recorded strips of three of the 25¢ Blue Virginia City Pony Express stamp on cover. It is a remarkable artifact of Western Express postal history.
We record only four covers bearing multiples of the Wells Fargo & Co. 25¢ Blue, as follows:
1 Strip of 5 plus one, February 25, 1863, "Edwards" (Grombacher) Collection, Christie's sale, 10/29/1991
2 Strip of 3, February 20, 1863, ex Mitchell (Sale 859, lot 199)
3 Strip of 3, February 15, 1863, the cover offered here
4 Pair, February 19, 1863, ex Kramer
VERY FINE. A CHOICE VIRGINIA CITY PONY EXPRESS COVER FROM SAN FRANCISCO TO GOLD HILL, NEVADA TERRITORY, WITH THE 25-CENT BLUE HORSE & RIDER ISSUE.
Ex Walske. With 2007 P.F. certificate
VERY FINE EXAMPLE OF THE WELLS, FARGO & COMPANY 25-CENT BLUE VIRGINIA CITY PONY EXPRESS STAMP ON A COVER FROM THE CELEBRATED CRITTENDEN CORRESPONDENCE.
This cover and letter were sent to Clara C. Crittenden by her son Howard, from Aurora in April 1863. Clara's husband, Alexander Parker Crittenden, was a prominent West Coast attorney, who also resided in Virginia City. The move to Nevada became necessary after California passed a law prohibiting the practice of law by anyone who would not take the loyalty oath. “Parker” Crittenden was a pro-Southerner who chose to relocate to Virginia City, rather than swear allegiance to the Federal government. His wife stayed in San Francisco for some time, and the two corresponded frequently while he was away. A few years later he was shot dead by his mistress in front of his wife and son.
Illustrated in Gamett's Nevada Express: Wells, Fargo & Co. and Other Letter Expresses 1857-1895 on p. 38. Ex Reinhart, Gamett and Walske. With 2007 P.F. certificate
EXTREMELY FINE AND ATTRACTIVE VIRGINIA CITY PONY EXPRESS COVER WITH THE 25-CENT BLUE HORSE & RIDER ISSUE.