Yuma, Arizona Territory, “Emergency” Military Express to Los Angeles.
Cover originating in Yuma, Arizona Territory and addressed to Mrs. C. V. Slade in Auburn Cal., 3¢ Rose (65) tied by cork cancel with “Los Angeles Cal. Feb. 21” (1868) circular datestamp struck upon entering mails, blue crayon “Rec’d Feb. 28”,
opened roughly at right where slightly reduced, a few perfs affected, otherwise Very Fine and rare, the letter from this cover (which no longer accompanies) states “contract thrown up, no mails received for approximately two months”
, from January through April 1867, severe flooding disrupted mails on the San Bernardino route. The Fort Yuma military express carried civilian mail from Yuma as a courtesy during this period, departing on Saturday nights and arriving in Los Angeles or Wilmington, California, approximately seven days later. From December 1867 through April 1868 more severe flooding, as well as the resignation of the mail contractor, caused further disruption, and the express was used again. The origin of these covers is known from the Slade correspondence, located in the University of Arizona Library Special Collections.
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