VERY FINE. ONE OF FIVE REPORTED EXAMPLES OF THE SHORT-LIVED GRAY'S CALIFORNIA EXPRESS, WHICH OPERATED BETWEEN SACRAMENTO AND SAN FRANCISCO.
This cover was carried from New York to Chagres on the USMSC Georgia (depart July 13, arrive July 25), then by the PMSS California from Panama to San Francisco (depart August 3, arrive August 23). Gray's California Express carried mail between Sacramento and San Francisco. The few known examples are dated from 1850 through mid-1851, and the firm's offices were closed by May 1852. This cover was delivered by Gray's Express to the Sacramento mining camps.
Ex Vogel, Walske and "New Helvetia"
VERY FINE. ONE OF ONLY FOUR RECORDED EXAMPLES OF THE THOMPSON & COMPANY FRANK.
As the frank clearly states, Thompson & Co. operated in close conjunction with Wells, Fargo & Company (circa 1857). Four franked entires are recorded in the Thomas book (p. 747) and illustrated in the CD, with one other reported from the Wiltsee collection, but without any additional information. All but one are addressed to David McKay in San Francisco. Three have Thompson Santa Rosa ovals -- two of these also with a Wells, Fargo Petaluma oval. The cover offered here has only the Thompson Healdsburg oval.
Illustrated in Letters of Gold. Ex Pearce, Haas, Edwards and Lyons. With 2011 P.F. certificate
VERY FINE APPEARANCE. ARGUABLY THE FINEST OF THE THREE RECORDED USED EXAMPLES OF TINNIN & OWEN'S EXPRESS FRANK. A GREAT RARITY.
W. J. Tinnin and John W. Owens began an express service through their general merchandise store in Weatherville Cal. at the end of 1867 or early 1868. The express did not last long, and a notice of discontinuance was published on May 1, 1868. Only three used covers are recorded, dated Feb. 29 (the example offered here), March 24 and April 16, 1868 -- along with an undated and uncancelled addressed cover (Thomas p. 753).
Illustrated in Nathan. Ex Hertz, Edwards and Lyons.