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Sale 101: The Westpex Sale

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State Postmarks - Washington Towns & Expresses

Lots 733-742 Lots 743-751

Lot 733    

Camp Simeahmoo, W.T., "Nov 6" 1858, well-struck cds with ms. "Nov 6" date on yellow cover bearing 10¢ green, type II (32), small faults, tied by fancy five-point star cancel to Mrs. J.W. Denver in Washington, D.C.; light stain spot in cds, reduced slightly at top and two tiny edge tears, otherwise Very Fine and rare.
Estimate    $2,000 - 3,000.


This cover was sent by August V. Kautz to his cousin, who was the wife of General James W. Denver. Kautz had emigrated from Germany to Ohio and was graduated from West Point in the class of 1848. At the time of this letter he was a Lieutenant. During the Civil War he rose to Brigadier General and then to Major General in 1864-65. He was a member of the military commission that tried the conspirators for the assassination of President Lincoln.

Camp Semiahmoo was founded by the Boundary Commission in 1858 as a base of operation for the northwest boundary commission survey on Canadian soil, among the remnants of the earlier British camp, on a little strip of open land near the mouth of the little Campbell River close to one of the Semiahmoo winter camps. The site was just north of the forty-ninth parallel; contained a fresh water supply, and the Campbell River channel provided water access over the tidal flats. While at this site the troops constructed about a mile and three-quarters of good road along the shore of Semiahmoo Bay between the boundary and Camp Semiahmoo. This base was later used while the boundary was slashed and marked from Semiahmoo Bay to the Sumas Flats.

Realized: $3,000

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Lot 734    

"Colville, October the 27 1861", datelined letter enclosed in yellow cover with "Paid 10" rating to Pownal, Maine; opening tears, some letter separations, Fine, The earliest recorded letter from Colville.
Estimate    $150 - 200.

The Washington Territorial Postmark catalog records a Colville Valley post office 1858-59 (no postmarks known) and Colville from 1883 to current.

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Lot 735    

Fort Colville, W.T. Mar 15, clear cds with matching target cancel tying faulty 10¢ green (68) on orange cover to Nanaimo, Vancouver Island, British Columbia, slightly reduced at right, very fine., F.-V.F.
Estimate    $300 - 400.

The Fort Colville Post Office was established in 1858 as a base of operation for the northwest boundary commission survey.

Realized: $425

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Lot 736    

(Hudson Bay Company) "Columbia River 15th August 1837" to London, England, datelined folded Autograph Letter Signed with integral address leaf of Archibald McDonald sent with the Hudson's Bay Co. canoe brigade express traveling from Fort Chipewyan on Lake Athabasca to York Factory on Hudson's Bay via Norway House to Chief Factor William Stuart in London, carried by H.B.C. ship "Prince Ruppert" to England arriving with stepped "Deal/Ship Letter" handstamp and manuscript "2/8"" (2s8d) due rating for double the 8d ship letter fee plus 8d inland postage from Deal to London (74 miles), red London "18 Oc 1838" backstamp with ms. "3/7" rerating, Very Fine and rare Hudson Bay Company canoe brigade cover, ex-Steinhart.
Estimate    $1,000 - 1,500.

The autographed signed letter from Archibald McDonald (1790-1853) was Chief Trader for the Hudson's Bay Company at Fort Langley, Fort Nisqually and Fort Colville and one-time deputy governor of the Red River Colony. Letter concerns an earlier letter written from Fort Colville about 25 September 1836 to John Stuart per Hudson Bar Co. "Columbia" by Captain Royal that was miss-addressed.

Realized: $850

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Lot 737    

Olympia W.T., Sep 2, 1863, double-circle datestamp with matching small segmented grid cancel on 1¢ blue (63) strip of three, small faults, on orange buff cover to Chatfield Minn.; reduced at right, some wear, Fine and scarce Washington Territory use of the 1¢ 1861 issue.
Estimate    $150 - 200.

Realized: $210

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Lot 738    

"Port Townsend WT, Oct 29th 1857", bold manuscript postmark and cross-hatch cancel tie 10¢ green (14), cut in, on cover with manuscript Northwest Boundary "N.W.B. Commission, Semiahmoo Bay, W.T." corner card to Jacksonville Ill.; partial flap, Fine and rare early Washington Territory use.
Estimate    $400 - 600.

Port Townsend was established on Sept. 28, 1852 in Oregon Territory. Although "Fifty-four forty or fight" was the slogan, the line was drawn at 49 degrees in 1846. However, it was not until the summer of 1857 when a joint American/British boundary commission began to survey the 409-mile line. It took four years, 1857-1861, to survey the entire 409-mile boundary, which crossed rugged and heavily forested terrain between the crest of the Rocky Mountains and the Pacific coast at Point Roberts.

Realized: $280

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Lot 739    

Port Townsend, W.T. Apr 3, cds with matching "PAID" handstamp with ms. "3" rating on light yellow cover with fancy framed "J.F. Blumberg, Cracker Baker" corner card to Steilacoom, W.T.; small repaired edge faults at top left, Fine appearance.
Estimate    $200 - 300.

Port Townsend post office opened in 1852, months before the establishment of the territory. However, the earliest date known was 1857.

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Lot 740    

Steilacoom City, W.T. Jun 7, balloon-style cds ties 10¢ green (35) on circa 1860 yellow cover with "Per Overland Mail Via Los Angeles" illustrated Four-Horse Stagecoach design to Hanover N.H.; front and back mostly separated, light stain bottom right, Very Fine, ex-J.D. Baker, Haas.
Estimate    $2,000 - 3,000.


The first U.S. overland mail contract connecting San Francisco to the Mississippi River cities was made with the Overland Mail Company as contractor. The "Southern" route name quickly became synonymous with the Company president, John Butterfield. This was a biweekly service (later more frequently between Los Angeles and San Francisco) in operation from September 16, 1858 through March 1861, when because of the impending Civil War, Congress determined to move the overland mail route north to the Central Overland Route.

Realized: $4,000

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Lot 741    

"Teekalet W.T., Dec 15", manuscript postmark (Type 1, 9 recorded) with matching cross-hatch canceling 10¢ green (33) on circa 1859 yellow cover to Maine; cover tears and repaired top left, F.-V.F.
Estimate    $150 - 200.

The manuscript Teekalet postmark is recorded from 23 Jan 1858 to 22 Mar 1859.

Realized: $240

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Lot 742    

Coupe's Express, printed oval frank on 3¢ pink (U58) entire lightly canceled by "Olympia W.T., Aug 9" cds duplexed with "10" in circle cancel to Portland, Maine; some edge wear and flap tear, otherwise Very Fine and rare.
Thomas Nos. COU-100    Estimate $1,000 - 1,500.


This one-man express was operated by Thomas Coupe in the Puget Sound area reportedly from 1864 for almost ten years. Coupe operated a small steamer vessel, the "Success", as a ferry between Port Townsend and Ebey's Landing on Whibey Island during the life of his express. A cover carried by Wells, Fargo & Co. from San Francisco to Port Townsend via Victoria is known bearing an endorsement "In Care of Capt Coupe".

Realized: $1,500

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Lots 733-742 Lots 743-751

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