VERY FINE STAMP ON AN ATTRACTIVE SOUTHBOUND COVER CARRIED BY THE HARTFORD MAIL ROUTE.
According to published research by Francis E. Stern (Collectors Club Philatelist, Vol. 41, No. 3), the Hartford Mail stamps were prepared by E. W. Parsons and a partner named Fuller. Parsons was a Hartford bookseller who later became the New England superintendent for Adams Express Company and then a prominent figure in the Hartford insurance business. Mr. Fuller was an agent for Thompson & Co.'s express in Springfield Mass. The apparent function of the Parsons-Fuller Hartford Mail was to carry mail between Hartford and other cities. They also linked with other inter-city expresses that served the region, such as Adams and Hale. The more than 60 surviving covers indicate that the Hartford Mail did not deliver mail between correspondents within the city. The operation commenced in 1844 -- the earliest known cover dates from August 1844 -- and it appears to have discontinued service on June 30, 1845, the latest recorded date and the point when inter-city letter expresses were outlawed.