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Sale 1238 — Civil War Special Mail Routes

Sale Date — Wednesday, 23 June, 2021

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*A buyer’s premium of 18% of the winning bid will be added as part of the total purchase price on all lots in this sale. Buyers are responsible for applicable sales tax, customs duty and any other prescribed charges. By placing a bid you agree to the terms and conditions of sale.

Category — Post-War Expresses

Lot
Symbol
Photo/Description
Cat./Est. Value
Realized
398
c
Sale Number 1238, Lot Number 398, Post-War ExpressesMAILS SUSPENDED, MAILS SUSPENDEDMAILS SUSPENDED. Straightline between two bars, bold strike on front and corresponding "Nashville Ten. Jun. 28, 1865" double-circle datestamp on back of yellow cover to Gainesville Ala. from a prisoner-of-war at Johnsons Island, prisoners' endorsement "Per Flag of Truce via Vicksburg Miss. W. E. Pearson Asst Surg", "Prisoner's Letter, Johnsons Island O., Examined J. Berry" examiner's oval handstamp perfectly struck, 3c Rose (65) tied by blue "Sandusky O. May. 12 '65" double-circle datestamp and target, tiny tear at left and faint waterstain at right

VERY FINE. AN EXTREMELY RARE POST-APPOMATTOX COVER FROM A CONFEDERATE PRISONER TO WEST-CENTRAL ALABAMA, WHERE MAIL SERVICE WAS NOT YET FUNCTIONING IN THE AFTERMATH OF THE CIVIL WAR.

This cover from William E. Pearson (Assistant Surgeon in the Co. F, 1st Regt., Tennessee Infantry.), a prisoner at Johnsons Island, was intended to go to Vicksburg and from there by flag-of-truce to Clinton or Jackson, Mississippi. However, by May 1865, the C.S.A. postal system had collapsed, and this cover was either stopped at or returned to Nashville. It was marked "MAILS SUSPENDED", then presumably returned to the sender in another envelope. This cover is rare in two respects: first, the flag-of-truce exchange point at Vicksburg is very unusual, and, second, the "MAILS SUSPENDED" marking is rarely seen on prisoners' mail.

Illustrated in Special Routes book (p. 11). Ex Walske.

Bid on this lot

E. 2,000-3,000
Future Sale
399
c
Sale Number 1238, Lot Number 399, Post-War ExpressesILLEGAL STAMP, ILLEGAL STAMPILLEGAL STAMP. Bold strike of straightline handstamp ties long-demonetized 3c Dull Red, Ty. III (26) on circa 1866 cover from Vera Cruz, Mexico, to Rutson Maury (of the famed Maury family) in New York City, directive "Politeness of Col. Geo. H. Sweet", stamp also tied by "New Orleans La. Dec. 28" circular datestamp, a different style of New Orleans datestamp struck on back, manuscript "Ship 6", notation "Mexico" on back, receipt docketing "Mrs. Genl. Stevens, Vera Cruz 15 Decr. Recd. 16 Jany.", indicates Vera Cruz, Mexico origin, opened for display, top flap reattached

VERY FINE. A REMARKABLE USE OF THE EXTREMELY RARE "ILLEGAL STAMP" MARKING APPLIED AT NEW ORLEANS. THIS COVER ORIGINATED FROM EX-CONFEDERATE GENERAL WALTER H. STEVENS' WIFE IN VERA CRUZ AFTER THE WAR.

Based on the docketing, this undoubtedly originated from the wife of Confederate General Walter H. Stevens. After the Civil War, Stevens went to Mexico, where he was superintendent and engineer for the Mexican Imperial Railroad, a railroad line planned by Emperor Maximilian I of Mexico to run between Vera Cruz and Mexico City. Stevens died of yellow fever at Vera Cruz on November 12, 1867. This was mailed either in December 1866, before he died, or in 1867, shortly after his death. The notation "Politeness of Col. Geo. H. Sweet" refers to Colonel George Henry Sweet, the former Confederate officer who commanded Camp Ford prison camp in Texas and toured Mexico in 1866 after the war.

Ex Haas and Dr. Brandon. With 1971 P.F. certificate

Bid on this lot

E. 2,000-3,000
Future Sale
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400
c
Sale Number 1238, Lot Number 400, Post-War ExpressesCANNOT BE FORWARDED, CANNOT BE FORWARDEDCANNOT BE FORWARDED. Mostly clear framed straightline handstamp struck in New Orleans on orange-buff cover to Bellville Tex., 3c Rose (65), tear at right, cancelled by target with "Tunkhannock Pa. Jul. 8" circular datestamp, "New Orleans La. Aug. 1" double-circle datestamp on back, pencil "due 25c" indicating express fee was paid for delivery to Texas, Very Fine and extremely rare post-war use before Federal mail service was fully restored, ex Walske

Bid on this lot

E. 1,000-1,500
Future Sale
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401
c
Sale Number 1238, Lot Number 401, Post-War ExpressesBaldwin's South Louisiana Express, Brashear City, La, Baldwin's South Louisiana Express, Brashear City, LaBaldwin's South Louisiana Express, Brashear City, La. Corner card on buff cover to New Orleans, 3c Rose (65) overpaying 2c drop letter rate, pen cancel and tied by target, matching "New Orleans La. Apr. 21 '65" double-circle datestamp, light soiling, Fine, ex Dr. Skinner, the 82-mile New Orleans, Opelousas & Great Western Railroad line between New Orleans (Algiers) and Brashear La. was under U.S. military control from July 1, 1862, until February 1, 1866, its operation, with a steamboat connection between Berwicks Bay and Galveston Tex., was essential to mail service, the U.S. mail contract with Baldwin as agent was awarded to the NOO&GW on May 26, 1866, at $100 per mile per year, the “Baldwin’s South La. Express MR 8154” circle is found on covers carried on the NOO&GW line between January and May 1866, the Algiers-Brashear mail route contract number was 8154

Bid on this lot

E. 400-500
Future Sale
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402
c
Sale Number 1238, Lot Number 402, Post-War ExpressesBaldwin's South La. Express MR 8154, Baldwin's South La. Express MR 8154Baldwin's South La. Express MR 8154. Circular handstamp ties 3c Rose (65), on buff cover to Brashear La., manuscript "May 1st 1866 l.y.s.", slight edge wear, still Very Fine, the 82-mile New Orleans, Opelousas & Great Western Railroad line between New Orleans (Algiers) and Brashear La. was under U.S. military control from July 1, 1862, until February 1, 1866, its operation, with a steamboat connection between Berwicks Bay and Galveston Tex., was essential to mail service, the U.S. mail contract with Baldwin as agent was awarded to the NOO&GW on May 26, 1866, at $100 per mile per year, the “Baldwin’s South La. Express MR 8154” circle is found on covers carried on the NOO&GW line between January and May 1866, the Algiers-Brashear mail route contract number was 8154

Bid on this lot

E. 300-400
Future Sale
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403
c
Sale Number 1238, Lot Number 403, Post-War ExpressesBaldwin's South La. Express MR 8154, Baldwin's South La. Express MR 8154Baldwin's South La. Express MR 8154. Blue circular handstamp ties 3c Rose (65), with "New Orleans La. ? 3 '66" double-circle datestamp on cover to Rochester N.Y., from Henry Gardner, a U.S. Army recruitment officer in Brashear La., with original contents asking "why are the mails so irregular?", reduced at left, Very Fine, the 82-mile New Orleans, Opelousas & Great Western Railroad line between New Orleans (Algiers) and Brashear La. was under U.S. military control from July 1, 1862, until February 1, 1866, its operation, with a steamboat connection between Berwicks Bay and Galveston Tex., was essential to mail service, the U.S. mail contract with Baldwin as agent was awarded to the NOO&GW on May 26, 1866, at $100 per mile per year, the “Baldwin’s South La. Express MR 8154” circle is found on covers carried on the NOO&GW line between January and May 1866, the Algiers-Brashear mail route contract number was 8154

Bid on this lot

E. 400-500
Future Sale
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404
c
Sale Number 1238, Lot Number 404, Post-War ExpressesChandler's News Express, Chandler's News ExpressChandler's News Express. Clearly struck oval handstamp with manuscript "5c" rate on yellow cover to Liberty Miss., 3c Rose (65) cancelled by target, mathematical notations on back, reduced at right, stamp lifted and moved slightly to left and with couple small margin flaws, Fine cover and an extremely rare express marking, ex Walske, J. B. Chandler of New Orleans established Chandler’s News Express, which carried mail between Liberty and Centreville, Mississippi, in 1866 Chandler filed a claim with the U.S. government, seeking payment for carrying mail for 11 months, but the claim was denied since he operated without U.S.P.O.D. authority

Bid on this lot

E. 500-750
Future Sale
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405
c
Sale Number 1238, Lot Number 405, Post-War ExpressesChandler's News Express, Chandler's News ExpressChandler's News Express. Boldly struck oval handstamp with pen "10" rate on cover to Liberty Miss., 3c Rose (65) tied by target cancel and "New Orleans La. ? 7 '66" double-circle datestamp, opened a bit roughly at right and with edge toning, stamp with diagonal crease, otherwise Very Fine and extremely rare express marking, ex H. B. Phillips and Dale-Lichtenstein, J. B. Chandler of New Orleans established Chandler’s News Express, which carried mail between Liberty and Centreville, Mississippi, in 1866 Chandler filed a claim with the U.S. government, seeking payment for carrying mail for 11 months, but the claim was denied since he operated without U.S.P.O.D. authority

Bid on this lot

E. 500-750
Future Sale
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406
c
Sale Number 1238, Lot Number 406, Post-War ExpressesForwarded by Commercial Express Co, Forwarded by Commercial Express CoForwarded by Commercial Express Co. Black on deep red label affixed with mucilage at left of yellow cover to Gloucester Va., manuscript "Pd. 2/ H" (two bits, or 25c) express fee at top left, "New Orleans La. Nov. 2, 1865" double-circle datestamp, Fine and very rare post-war express use which entered the U.S. mails without postage, ex Robson Lowe and Dr. Skinner, the Commercial Express Company operated from July 1864 to February 1866, with routes between New York and New Orleans, and between New Orleans, Texas and Mexico, the most comprehensive article on the Commercial Express was published by Larry Ballantyne in The Penny Post (Oct. 2009), the Ballantyne census lists 13 covers (this cover illustrated on p. 60)

Bid on this lot

E. 750-1,000
Future Sale
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407
c
Sale Number 1238, Lot Number 407, Post-War Expresses10c Yellow Green (68), 10c Yellow Green (68)10c Yellow Green (68). Bright color, tied by target cancel, "New Orleans La. May 18, 1865" double-circle datestamp on folded cover to Matamoros, Mexico, endorsed "pr. Commercial Express" and with "Commercial Express Co. Paid May 18" double-circle datestamp, neat "Franco" in oval backstamp indicating Mexican postage paid, docketing indicates letter was written on May 18 by E.J. Forstall in New Orleans and received on May 31, light file folds do not affect stamp

VERY FINE AND RARE COMMERCIAL EXPRESS COVER FROM NEW ORLEANS TO MATAMORAS, MEXICO, SENT A FEW DAYS BEFORE CONFEDERATE FORCES WEST OF THE MISSISSIPPI SURRENDERED.

The Commercial Express Company operated from July 1864 to February 1866, with routes between New York and New Orleans, and between New Orleans, Texas and Mexico. The most comprehensive article on the Commercial Express was published by Larry Ballantyne in The Penny Post (Oct. 2009). The Ballantyne census lists 13 covers (this cover illustrated on p. 55). Confederate forces west of the Mississippi River surrendered on May 26, 1865, ending the war in Louisiana, just a few days after this was sent.

With 2008 P.F. certificate

Bid on this lot

E. 2,000-3,000
Future Sale
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408
c
Sale Number 1238, Lot Number 408, Post-War ExpressesForwarded by Commercial Express Co. Bagdad, Mexico, Forwarded by Commercial Express Co. Bagdad, MexicoForwarded by Commercial Express Co. Bagdad, Mexico. Ornately framed handstamp on buff cover carried from Texas to Bagdad (Mexico) via Brownsville, then by Commercial Express Co. to New Orleans, addressed to Ene. Meunier, in care of Hebert & Escousse and sender's routing "By Commercial Express", manuscript "Pd 5/-" express rate (five bits, or 62-1/2c), "New Orleans La. May 22" (1865) circular datestamp and bold "Ship 8" in circle handstamp for double ship rate

VERY FINE. ONE OF TWO RECORDED COVERS CARRIED BY THE COMMERCIAL EXPRESS COMPANY FROM THEIR OFFICE IN BAGDAD, MEXICO.

The Commercial Express Company operated from July 1864 to February 1866, with routes between New York and New Orleans, and between New Orleans, Texas and Mexico. The most comprehensive article on the Commercial Express was published by Larry Ballantyne in The Penny Post (Oct. 2009). The Ballantyne census lists 13 covers, of which two were handled by the Bagdad office and have similar markings (this cover illustrated on p. 57). Confederate forces west of the Mississippi River surrendered on May 26, 1865, ending the war in Louisiana, just a few days after this was received in New Orleans. The Commercial Express Company carried it out of Texas to Bagdad, Mexico, via Brownsville and on to New Orleans, where it entered the mails as a ship letter.

Ex Meroni and Walske

Bid on this lot

E. 2,000-3,000
Future Sale
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409
c
Sale Number 1238, Lot Number 409, Post-War ExpressesPioneer Express Co. Selma Ala, Pioneer Express Co. Selma AlaPioneer Express Co. Selma Ala. Bold woodcut circular handstamp (without month) ties 3c Rose (65) on folded letter datelined "Selma Ala. July 27th/65" and addressed to New York City "pr Express", sent via New Orleans with a second 3c 1861 affixed over "Paid 35" express charge and tied by "New Orleans La. Aug. 1 '65" double-circle datestamp and target, left stamp with small edge hole, lifted and hinged in place

EXTREMELY FINE. ONE OF THREE RECORDED EXAMPLES OF THE PIONEER EXPRESS COMPANY'S SELMA OFFICE HANDSTAMP.

The second largest C.S.A. express company was the Pioneer Express Company, which operated along the Mobile & Ohio Railroad and connecting lines. The headquarters was in Mobile, and a corner card from 1865 shows the address as 48 North Royal Street, located near the railroad yard on the waterfront. After the war Adams Express opened its Mobile office just a few doors away at 36 North Royal.

Only three examples of the Selma office woodcut handstamp are recorded -- all post-war uses. One of the three has a "July" date in the handstamp. This cover was sent during the early post-war period when many mail routes were not operational. Pioneer Express carried the letter from Selma to New Orleans, and from there it entered the government mails. A second 3c stamp was affixed and cancelled at New Orleans.

Ex Knapp, MacBride, Muzzy and Gallagher. With 2002 P.F. certificate

Bid on this lot

E. 3,000-4,000
Future Sale
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410
c
Sale Number 1238, Lot Number 410, Post-War ExpressesPioneer Express Co. Mobile, Ala. Aug. 29, 1865, Pioneer Express Co. Mobile, Ala. Aug. 29, 1865Pioneer Express Co. Mobile, Ala. Aug. 29, 1865. Clear strike of double-circle datestamp ties 3c Rose (65) on Whitfield, Billups & Co. Cotton Factors merchant's corner card cover to Demopolis Ala., sent by Luke J. Whitfield, the company controller to his family, manuscript "DH" notation indicates no express fee charged, Extremely Fine, a choice example of post-war express use, Pioneer Express operated over the Mobile & Ohio Railroad and connecting lines during and after the war, ex Emerson and Hall

Bid on this lot

E. 500-750
Future Sale
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411
c
Sale Number 1238, Lot Number 411, Post-War ExpressesFrom Red River Express, Jefferson Texas, From Red River Express, Jefferson TexasFrom Red River Express, Jefferson Texas. Three-line fancy imprint on buff cover to Charlotte N.C. "Care of A. M. Wilson Agt. Shreveport La.", presumably it was Wilson who added "to New Orleans La." to imprint and crossed out original "Collect 4/c" express charge (four bits, or 50c), either a stamp or possibly a mounted coin was removed from top right, the "4/c" crossed out in same hand and "Due .30 cts" added over gummed spot, sent in care of W. R. Myers with pencil docketing on back "William R. Myers 1865" but no further dating, small part of backflap remains from opening

VERY FINE. THE ONLY RECORDED RED RIVER EXPRESS IMPRINT COVER, CARRIED DOWN THE RED RIVER FROM SHREVEPORT TO NEW ORLEANS AND FROM THERE OUT OF THE MAILS TO CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA.

The Red River Express was started in August 1865 by C. J. MacLellan, a New Orleans merchant with offices at 54 Canal Street. The first announcements advertised service to Shreveport, Alexandria, Grand Ecore and Baton Rouge. Service to Jefferson Texas was announced in November 1865. Texas newspapers were acknowledging the receipt of newspapers by Red River Express as late as June 30, 1866.

This remarkable cover is the only recorded example of the Red River Express imprint. With the 1865 year-docketing only, it is impossible to determine when the cover was sent, though it seems likely that it was in late 1865 given the November announcement of service to Texas. The "Due 30 cts." applied after the removal of a stamp or coin represents a 20c reduction in the original "Collect 4/-" charge (50c), though we are not certain how that 20c value was represented/collected. We speculated when this was last sold in 1998 that that the 20c might have been represented by a 20c Green Confederate stamp (there were no U.S. 20c stamps in existence), but that would not be possible if this is in fact a late 1865 use. Whatever the explanation for the change in rate and removal this is a very rare and desirable express use to Texas.

Ex Gallagher. With 1998 P.F. certificate

Bid on this lot

E. 4,000-5,000
Future Sale
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412
c
Sale Number 1238, Lot Number 412, Post-War ExpressesForwarded by Red River Express, Forwarded by Red River ExpressForwarded by Red River Express. Clear strike of red oval handstamp on 3c Pink entire (U59) originating in Texas and addressed to A. B. Springs, care of W. R. Myers in Charlotte N.C., entered mails with "New Orleans La. Dec. 4 '65" double-circle datestamp and target, backstamped with large ribbon marker of A. Stewart & Co. of New Orleans (commission merchants, forwarders, and "Also Agents for the Red River Express"), lightly cleaned

VERY FINE. THIS IS THE ONLY RECORDED EXAMPLE OF THE RED RIVER EXPRESS OVAL HANDSTAMP, SENT FROM TEXAS TO CHARLOTTE NORTH CAROLINA VIA NEW ORLEANS.

The Red River Express was started in August 1865 by C. J. MacLellan, a New Orleans merchant with offices at 54 Canal Street. The first announcements advertised service to Shreveport, Alexandria, Grand Ecore and Baton Rouge. Service to Jefferson Texas was announced in November 1865. Texas newspapers were acknowledging the receipt of newspapers by Red River Express as late as June 30, 1866.

We record only this example of the Red River Express oval, and the imprint cover offered in the previous lot.

Ex Brugh

Bid on this lot

Sale Number 1238, Lot Number 412, Post-War ExpressesForwarded by Red River Express, Forwarded by Red River Express
Image 2
E. 3,000-4,000
Future Sale
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413
c
Sale Number 1238, Lot Number 413, Post-War Expresses2c Black (73), 2c Black (73)2c Black (73). Tied by 5-bar grid cancel and "New York City Jun. 28" circular datestamp on manila cover to city street address, clear strike of blue "Southern Express Co., Augusta Ga." double-circle handstamp with manuscript "Paid 2/-" (two bits, or 25c express fee), tiny bit of ink erosion in manuscript fee notation, minor toning not mentioned on accompanying certificate

VERY FINE. A RARE AND POSSIBLY UNIQUE EXAMPLE OF A BLACK JACK STAMP USED ON A POST-WAR SOUTHERN EXPRESS COMPANY COVER FROM SOMEWHERE IN THE SOUTH TO NEW YORK CITY.

The Black Jack paid the local 2c rate for delivery in New York City, which is where this cover entered the mails. The origin is unknown, but the Southern Express Company carried mail for a period after the war, when regular postal routes in the South were still disrupted.

Ex Dr. Rorke and Faust. With 1979 P.F. certificate

Bid on this lot

E. 1,500-2,000
Future Sale
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414
c
Sale Number 1238, Lot Number 414, Post-War ExpressesSouthern Express Co., Augusta Ga, Southern Express Co., Augusta GaSouthern Express Co., Augusta Ga. Blue double-circle handstamp with manuscript "Paid 2/" (two bits, or 25c) on cover to Mrs. Howell Cobb at either Macon or Athens Ga., additional manuscript "Paid 25/100", uncancelled 3c Rose (65) as required by postal regulations, slightly oxidized, Very Fine post-war express use, with 1977 C.S.A. certificate

Bid on this lot

E. 200-300
Future Sale
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415
c
Sale Number 1238, Lot Number 415, Post-War ExpressesSouthern Express Co. Columbus Geo. Jul. 29, Southern Express Co. Columbus Geo. Jul. 29Southern Express Co. Columbus Geo. Jul. 29. Double-circle datestamp struck over "Southern Express Company" imprint on 3c Pink on Buff entire to New York City, entered mails with light strike of "Chattanooga Ten. Aug. 2" circular datestamp with grid duplex, slight oxidation of indicia, mounting remnants on back, Very Fine post-war express use to the North

Bid on this lot

E. 400-500
Future Sale
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416
c
Sale Number 1238, Lot Number 416, Post-War ExpressesSouthern Express Lynchburg, Va. Nov. 10, 1865, Southern Express Lynchburg, Va. Nov. 10, 1865Southern Express Lynchburg, Va. Nov. 10, 1865. Clear strike of blue oval handstamp on 3c Pink on Buff entire (U59) to Staunton Va., manuscript "Per Southern Express Paid" at top, Very Fine and scarce, with 1973 P.F. certificate

Bid on this lot

E. 400-500
Future Sale
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417
c
Sale Number 1238, Lot Number 417, Post-War ExpressesAdams Express Co. Mobile, Ala, Adams Express Co. Mobile, AlaAdams Express Co. Mobile, Ala. Bold strike of oval handstamp on 3c Pink entire to Washington D.C., Oct. 31, 1865 docketing at left, minor edgewear, Very Fine, a choice post-war express use, ex Hall

Bid on this lot

E. 300-400
Future Sale
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418
c
Sale Number 1238, Lot Number 418, Post-War ExpressesThe Texas (Southern) Express Company, The Texas (Southern) Express CompanyThe Texas (Southern) Express Company. Imprint with "Texas" crossed out and "Southern" written above, blue "Southern Ex. Co. New Orleans La. Jul. 6, 1866" double-circle datestamp partly struck, with manuscript "NO July 6" and "Pd 2/-" (two bits, or 25c) express charge on 3c Pink entire to Tuscumbia Ala., Very Fine, the Southern Express Company, which operated within the C.S.A. during the war, continued to provide mail-carrying services in 1865 and 1866, while Adams had previously operated in U.S.-occupied territory, they apparantly turned those routes over to the Southern Express Company after the war

Bid on this lot

E. 750-1,000
Future Sale
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419
c
Sale Number 1238, Lot Number 419, Post-War ExpressesSouthern Express Co. Richmond Va. Aug. 16, 1865, Southern Express Co. Richmond Va. Aug. 16, 1865Southern Express Co. Richmond Va. Aug. 16, 1865. Clear strike of double-circle datestamp with manuscript "Paid 2/- W" (two bits, or 25c) express charge on cover to Big Lick Va., endorsed "Per Southern Express Company", slightly reduced at top, Extremely Fine, ex Gallagher and Hahn

Bid on this lot

E. 500-750
Future Sale
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420
c
Sale Number 1238, Lot Number 420, Post-War ExpressesSouthern Ex. Co. New Orleans, La. Jun. 7, 1866, Southern Ex. Co. New Orleans, La. Jun. 7, 1866Southern Ex. Co. New Orleans, La. Jun. 7, 1866. Clear strike of blue double-circle datestamp on 10c Green entire (U40) to former U.S. and C.S.A. Congressman John Perkins in Cordova, Mexico, U.S. postage prepaid as required by law but did not enter mails until it reached Mexico, "2" reales handstamped due marking, receipt docketing, slightly reduced at top, small repaired nick at top right, still Fine, this is the only 10c entire we have seen sent to Mexico by the Southern Express Company, similar covers from New Orleans to Mexico were carried earlier by the Commercial Express (see lot 407) and usually have stamps, John Perkins served in the U.S. Congress from 1853-55 and the Confederate Congress from 1862-65, he briefly worked as a colonization agent for the Mexican government after the war

Bid on this lot

E. 750-1,000
Future Sale
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