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All of these items are 100% AUTHENTIC. CLICK on any photo for an ENLARGED view.

Messenger Twelve

Wells, Fargo & Co.'s Express
Messenger Twelve's Cap Badge & Seal

Twelve Badge

Engraved "German silver" cap badges were issued by employee number to each Messenger in the 1880's.
Therefore, the lower the number, the earlier the date of issue. No records are available
that identify these messengers, but Messenger 12 was certainly one of the earliest!
This Cap Badge is original!
However, because this photo has been published, this Cap Badge has been reproduced!
The A. G. Meier & Co. cap is pre-1918, size 7-1/4, but is NOT marked for Wells Fargo & Co.

For more information on Cap Badges, Click here!

Seal SideView Seal CloseUp

Each Messenger was issued a numbered Seal for use in sealing bags and packages. It was issued
for his exclusive use, and was not accessible to any other person.
This Messenger's Seal is original! To our knowledge, it has NOT been reproduced!

This seal was issued to Messenger Twelve, along with a Lock and Key, both of which bore
the number 12. The whereabouts of Messenger Twelve's lock and key are unknown. In 1882,
a Lead and Wire Sealer, bearing the number 12 was issued to him, but its whereabouts is
unknown. Also unknown, is the whereabouts of Messenger Twelve's Coin Bag Sealer.

For more information on Seals, Click here!

This CAP BADGE and SEAL are PICTURED in the book, "Company Property . . .", Pages 24 & 121 !!!
A signed complimentary copy of "Company Property . . ." will be included with the purchase of these items.

To order a Signed Copy of "Company Property . . ." ONLY, Click Here!

Twelve Lamp

Each Messenger filled his Sealing Lamp with alcohol, lighted the wick, and melted
the wax before applying his seal. This Sealing Lamp is typical of those used
"on the road" by all messengers, but probably was NOT used by Messenger Twelve.

This Sealing Lamp is NOT marked for Wells Fargo & Co.
For more information, Click Here !

Twelve Book

"Messenger Twelve," by James Lynn Bartz, is a 249-page fictional account of a slave trader, who is forced
into insolvency when his slave ships fail to return. Tracking them down, he travels to San Francisco
at the height of the Gold Rush, becoming entrapped in its frenzy and madness.

Following the line of avaricious gold-seekers into the hills of the Sierra Nevadas, he stakes his claim,
is attacked by assassins, loses his gold stake, and is forced to return from the hills. He is asked
to become a delivery messenger with a young company, Well, Fargo & Co.'s Express.

His new responsibilities place him on a path to face the assassins, and to protect his "Treasure Box,"
a young slave girl hidden in a wooden trunk.

This copy is signed by the author.

All four items: $4,000.

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Dale Robertson Obituary

Dale Robertson Funeral Program and Two Obituaries

From 1957 to 1962, Dale Robertson starred as Jim Hardie in the television series, "Tales of Wells Fargo."
Although the stories were fictional, most of the company artifacts used on the sets were authentic,
and simply obtained from the studio "Props" Department. Many fans of this show became avid collectors
of Wells Fargo relics because of Jim Hardie's adventures.

In 1993, Dale Robertson generously provided a Foreword to the book,
"Company Property of Wells, Fargo & Co.'s Express 1852-1918."

Fondly, we remember Dale Robertson here, and we thank him for being with us.


To read a poem written by Dale Robertson, Click here!

To see Dale Robertson, in the TV series, "Tales of Wells Fargo," Click here!

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Vegetable Crate Label

Vegetable Crate Label

This crate label is believed to be from the 1940's, and NOT pre-1918!

Wells Fargo & Co. of Arizona was one of the few subsidiaries of Wells Fargo & Co.
that was NOT merged into the American Railway Experess Co. in 1918.
These subsidiaries continued to do business well into the 1960's,
using the Company's original 1866 corporate charter.

Vegetable crate labels, with or without this "Call Card logo," were used to advertise the shipments
of produce that was grown in Arizona or Mexico. "Fargo Tomatoes" and "Selectos Mexican Peppers"
are two other examples. This label measures 6" x 9".

THIS IS THE LABEL THAT IS PICTURED in the book, "Company Property . . .", on Page 149 !!!
To order this book, Click Here!


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Scott Arden List

Scott Arden's Railroad, Telegraph, & Express Co. Sales Lists

Over 160 ORIGINAL sales lists, from 1973 thru 1993, describing Dining Car China and Silver,
Locks and Keys, Lamps and Lanterns, Depot Clocks, Telegraph Keys & Sounders,
Advertising Signs and Drumheads, Wax Seals, and many Express Co. artifacts and relics.

MOST years are complete, with 12 or more issues on legal-size colored-paper.
Some years include fewer issues.
Twenty-plus additional issues from 1972-73 are only black-and-white COPIES.

For DETAILS about Scott Arden, Click here!


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25-yr Service Button 25-yr Service Button Reverse

W F & Co Express Twenty-Five-Year Service Button

Service Buttons were introduced in 1915 to recognize years of "Faithful Service" to the company.
Using the "CALL CARD" design, all are basically the size of a U.S. dime,
although the longer the service, the fancier the button.

The 25-year buttons were fabricated and hallmarked
"14K", and "C.A. Winship", at the "Masonic Temple" in "Chicago".

A Gold Bezel can be purchased at a coin shop to convert the service button to an attractive piece of jewelry,
perhaps a lady's necklace, or a gentleman's watch chain.

Caveat: The Call Card disc separated from the base, and was repaired recently by a local jeweler.


A Five-Year Service Button -- $200:
Service Button #1 Service Button Back Service Button w/ dime

Another Five-Year Service Button -- This one for $150:
Service Button #2 Service Button #2 Back

And, a TEN-Year Service Button -- This one for $200:
Service Button #3 Service Button #3 Back

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Directory 1914 Directory 1914 Back

W F & Co Express 1914 Official Directory

Directories were published as early as 1856. They listed the routes to destinations that were being
served by the company. "Official" Directories, with soft covers, were published in 1914, 1915, and 1916.

Directories are useful in determining the opening and closing of offices in various locations.

THIS IS THE DIRECTORY THAT IS PICTURED in the book, "Company Property . . .", on Page 56 !!!

For information on Directories, Click here!


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Carleton E. Watkins and I.W. Taber Photo of Oakland Ferry Yerba Buena Island and San Francisco Harbor c1865
Photo of San Francisco Harbor c1865 Photo of San Francisco Harbor c1865 Photo of San Francisco Harbor c1865 Photo of San Francisco Harbor c1865 Photo of San Francisco Harbor c1865

San Francisco Harbor Photo, c1875.

Carleton E. Watkins probably stood on Telegraph Hill around 1865 and photographed this tranquil scene of three-masted
ships in San Francisco's harbor. The steam-powered Oakland Ferry is seen, along with Yerba Buena Island.

Watkins went bankrupt in 1875, and his studio was acquired by Isaiah West Taber, who continued the production
of photographs and stereoviews. This photograph is most probably Taber's period print of a Watkins negative.

Taber's studio was located at 8 Montgomery St., San Francisco, over the Hibernia Bank. His advertisement in the 1884
San Francisco Directory invited customers to "Ascend In Elevator." Apparently, Taber was doing quite well!

This is an ORIGINAL photo in heavy card stock.
"B 862 San Francisco Bay" and "Taber Photo San Francisco" identify this one of many scenes around San Francisco.
The 1906 earthquake destroyed Taber's studio and all his work. However, this one survived! Measures 7-5/8"" by 9-3/8".


For information on company Photographs, Visit our Museum!

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All of these items are 100% AUTHENTIC. CLICK on any photo for an ENLARGED view.

Railway Express Agency Messengers Kit Box c1930

Railway Express Agency Messengers Kit Box c1930 Railway Express Agency Messengers Kit Box c1930

Railway Express Agency Messenger's Kit Box, c1930.

Kit boxes were used by express messengers from the early days of Wells Fargo. See the book, "Company Property . . .", page 139, and study the myriad items that were needed in the course of a day's business.

By the 1930's, the size had diminished considerably, as seen here. No longer was space needed for a shot gun, a lantern, or oak rollers. Recently, one of these same kit boxes was mistaken for a treasure box (!) on one of the Pawn reality TV shows.

Like-new condition, this was purchased years ago from a retired REA messenger. Some hardened sealing wax still remains in the bottom of the box. Measures 9-1/2" x 12" x 9" high.


For more information about Kit Boxes and Treasure Boxes, visit our Museum!

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Western Railroad Wood and Steel Train Order Case

Railroad Train Order Case.

These wood and metal cases held the Train Order Blanks, which were interleaved with sheets of carbon paper.

Each shelf was stacked with a specific number of blanks. The minimum stack was for four copies -- one each for the Dispatcher, Station Agent, Train Engineer, and Train Conductor.

A Station Agent received train orders on the Telegraph Sounder. Then, he "typed" them out on the "Train Order Mill," which was an "all-caps" typewriter.

This Train Order Case measures 9-1/2" high by 10-1/2" wide by 12-1/2" deep. These are seldom seen, but one is a "must" for a collector of railroad depot items.


We remember the Village Depot, and the depot at Bosky Dell.

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Railroad Depot J.H. Bunnell Telegraph Sounder

J.H. Bunnell Telegraph Sounder.

These classic aluminum and brass telegraph sounders clicked away the hours in thousands of railroad depots and telegraph offices throughout the USA for decades.

"N.Y.R.S. 2884 Inspected" is stamped on the bottom. Perfect working condition.

Bunnell sounders are those most sought-after by railroad collectors.


Be sure and visit the Village Depot, and the depot at Bosky Dell.

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NM & NV Place Names

New Mexico & Nevada Place Names

New Mexico Place Names, 1965, Edited by T. M. Pearce, 187 pages, Soft Cover.

A hidden treasure lies within these pages and their cheap paper cover! In countless entriess,
the details date back to the arrival of the Conquistadors! Hundreds of contributors
participated in creating this magnificent book, which claims over "5,000 individual items."
Spanish & Indian names, Railroads, dates, Belly Ache Mesa, Dead Man's Arroyo,
and countless other items are fully narrated. Any serious aficionado
of New Mexico history would be so enlightened by possessing this volume!

Nevada Place Names, 1964, by Rufus Wood Leigh, 149 pages, Hard Cover.

Places in Nevada are organized county-by-county, or by an Index, if you prefer.
Eight black-and-white plates of various mountain scenes are included, courtesy
of the Southern, Union, & Western Pacific Railroads. A Glossary gives the reader
insight on the origin of names known to us all, like Arroyo, Mesa, and Pinto. A nostalgic
view of a barren state, long before becoming a tourist goal and gambling mecca.

Both for $100.

View other Books and Media!

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Forster 2

1985, by Dale E. Forster, 231 pages, Hard Cover, Number 235 of 500.

Forster gives a clear picture of the competition among the U.S. and other postal services,
the telegraph companies, and the express companies. The narrative is divided into three periods,
the early years between 1845 and 1855, the Western Oregon companies between 1855 and 1870,
and the Eastern Oregon companies up to 1870.

What is pleasantly surprising to the reader is the plethora of black-and-white photos
of the postal covers, pictured on page after page throughout the book! The only other
enormous repository of postal covers, of which we are aware,
is the extensive archive of original covers owned and preserved
by the Wells Fargo Bank in San Francisco!

This book is required reading for any express company philatelic collector.


To view magnificent covers from the Earnest A. Wiltsee collection: Click here!

View other Books and Media!

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1984, by Jesse L. Coburn, 389 pages, Hard Cover.

An excellent discussion of covers, Coburn traces the history
of postal delivery all the way from Spain, the conquest of
Mexico, and the conquest of California, and the Gold Rush.

Eight pages of glorious color feature a select few of covers from
an immense collection of black-and-white photos.

A great companion volume to the Forster book! Coburn's discussion
includes the United States, Panama and Hawaii!


To view magnificent covers from the Earnest A. Wiltsee collection: Click here!

View other Books and Media!

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"Wells Fargo & Co's Express" is the most romanticized company in the West.

Authentic "Wells Fargo"  antiques will always increase in value.
Fakes will always be junk.

Call: 951-404-3069

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