Old collector, new member

Discussion in 'Introductions' started by littleriverphil, Sep 12, 2014.

  1. littleriverphil

    littleriverphil Active Member

    Howdy all, new to here , but an old collector. I have collected since 1953, off and on. Started then stopped several times, each time narrowing my interests until now I collect U.S. banknotes through first bureaus, National Parks and Farleys, main interests are the Departmental Stamps, and the Special Printings. I also collect covers from two California counties, Humboldt and Mendocino.
  2. Hochstrasse

    Hochstrasse Moderator Moderator

    Hi Littleriverphil, it's good to have you aboard! Having collected for so many years I'm sure there is a wealth of information you have accumulated. I'm also a collector of U.S. issues, albeit much broader than what you specifically focus on. I'm looking forward to your input and hopefully learning something new.
  3. littleriverphil

    littleriverphil Active Member

  4. Peter T Davis

    Peter T Davis Administrator Moderator

    Welcome! How did you get into collecting covers from those two counties?
  5. Gunny

    Gunny Retired Jarhead Moderator

    Welcome !! What stamp collector hasn't started, stopped, restarted, stopped, restarted........

    Looking forward to your posts.
    littleriverphil likes this.
  6. littleriverphil

    littleriverphil Active Member

    I was born on the Mendocino County coast, moved away from there 6 times, and back 5.
    In one of my non collecting periods, I found a shoe box of 1880's -1890's covers in of all places, a flea market, I bought the box for a few bucks, found them interesting, but life was gonna throw me another curveball, and the wife and I split up.
    About 10 years later, and I'm living in Mendocino County Little River, CA. My life is settled and I begin collecting stamps again. One day, a friend and I take a drive from my house over the coastal mountains, to play Ukiah's Muni golf course, the only 18 hole course in the county.

    The friend had some business to take care of on Church St, near the Courthouse. I found a parking space a door away from where the friend needed to go. I had parked in front of a Stamp and Coin shop.

    I went in to see what sort of stock they had. He was really a coin collector, and a friend had given him an old collection of bulk covers. One of the boxes had Mendocino County postmarks.I picked out as many as I could find. He let me have the covers for 50 cents each.
    I was hooked! Several months later I bought John H. Williams book California Town Postmarks In that book I found that this first cover's date is 83 days before this postmark is first recorded.
    Here's 3 covers I picked up that day.

    Fort Bragg Feb 15 1887.JPG

    This postmark is a County postmark, a premium.

    Cleone Mendocino County.jpg

    This last cover although a bit soiled, is a scarce out of the mail usage, hand delivered to the Mendocino City Express Agent Eugene Brown, directed by Mr. Dutard to be on the S.S. Point Arena, probably the next ship out of port headed north to Mendocino, 95 sea miles away.

    Per Pt Arena.JPG
    I_Love_Stamps and zararina like this.
  7. zararina

    zararina Simply Me! :D

    Welcome to the forum Littleriverphil. :)
    It will be great to see some of your collection around.
  8. I_Love_Stamps

    I_Love_Stamps Member

    Little river Phil you're a collector after my own heart! I love the cancellations. machine, corks rollers and devices as well as covers and postal history in general!

    I'm sure you are aware of all these references but if not or if it could help someone else I'll post the references that are my go-to's when it comes to this stuff! I love that Wells Fargo & company cover and it's pretty valuable too! (but you obviously knew that!)

    * ALEXANDER & SIMPSON – U.S. Postal Markings, 1851-61, Thomas Alexander & Tracey Simpson

    * American Stampless Cover Catalog, VOL I. Vol II & Vol III. – 1997

    * Ter BRAAKE – The Posted Letter in Colonial and Revolutionary America, Alex L. 672p

    * COLE – Cancellations and Killers of the Banknote Era, 1870-1894 James M Cole 345p

    And one of my personal go-to references and favorite reads of all time -

    ** SKINNER & ENO – United States Cancellations, 1845-1869 – Skinner and Eno

    I thought you would especially this one since you're from the area! -

    ** COBURN – Letters of Gold California Postal History Through 1869, Jesse L. Coburn 389p

    *1862 – List of Post Offices in the United States 323p

    Actually all of these (and a lot more) can be freely downloaded as PDF files on the USPCS site at this link -


    Sincerely & respectfully -Jay

    If I find more I'll post them below
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2014
    littleriverphil likes this.
  9. I_Love_Stamps

    I_Love_Stamps Member

  10. I_Love_Stamps

    I_Love_Stamps Member

    littleriverphil likes this.
  11. I_Love_Stamps

    I_Love_Stamps Member

    Of course you know about the Swedish Tiger site, 1847usa site and Ole' Jim Forte's Postal history website so I won't bother posting links. Heck maybe all these references should be their own thread on helpful links or something? lol I hadn't realized there was so many! I have lots more but from reading your posts you seem like you know what your doing quite well! Your stampy friend -Jay
    littleriverphil likes this.
  12. littleriverphil

    littleriverphil Active Member

    Now you can download the books that I bought, guess I should have waited to fill my book shelves!

    I'm actually kinda on the fence over that cover, it is such a nice cover, being a late out of the mails express cover, but that soiling bothers me. I keep thinking that it needs a bath, but I'm afraid I may damage it trying to clean it. Any suggestions?
    I've got a couple more Wells Fargo covers that you may enjoy. The first one is a puzzle to me. Why is this collect? It was obviously mailed after 1863 when the transcontinental rate was lowered to 3 cents. Cover doesn't look like it carried triple weight. Who ever applied the lower left stamp tore it, and carefully pasted it onto the cover before canceling the stamp.

    Albion Wells Fargo.JPG


    This Wells Fargo cover has Punta Arenas's scarce saw tooth double circle CDS.


    This last Wells Fargo cover is just stunning!

    Last edited: Sep 15, 2014
    Gunny likes this.
  13. I_Love_Stamps

    I_Love_Stamps Member

    Don't "give it a bath"!! Even with the damaged stamp and a bit soiling it's still a very highly sought after cover and I, for one, would be proud to display it! It'd go right next to my Pony Express bible or in my cover collection! Beautiful ~ actually jaw-dropping stuff!!
  14. I_Love_Stamps

    I_Love_Stamps Member

    @littleriverphil I get the feeling I know you from someplace? Are you on another of the "well known sites" by an chance? I'll PM you i gotta ask you something?
  15. Lokin4AReason

    Lokin4AReason New Member

    welcome aboard ...
  16. littleriverphil

    littleriverphil Active Member

    And welcome to you as well. What do you collect?
  17. littleriverphil

    littleriverphil Active Member

    I grew up on the Mendocino coast. Point Arena, said to be the furthest point west of the continental U.S. Redwood lumber settled this county. My interest in the history of the county was sparked by tales of ship loads of lumber headed down coast for the City of San Francisco. Every time San Francisco burned down, it was rebuilt with lumber from Mendocino and Humboldt.

    I was just collecting Mendocino County, but lumberjacks don't write all that many letters. So after years of a few covers showing up on Ebay, and my collection hardly growing, a well known auction firm had quality Mendocino county covers. Schuyler Rumsey Sale 14.

    After I found the stash of Mendocino covers in Ukiah, I subscribed to La Posta, and placed an ad, seeking coast towns. I got two replies, the first with in 3 months, offering some modern covers. then nothing for 3 years.

    The week I get the Rumsey catalogue, I get my second reply, offering two covers. Looking at the printout of his scans I did a doubletake, WAIT! Rumsey is offering that Little River cover, I recognize the addressee's name! I open my Rumsey catalogue to my bid sheet bookmarker. Yeah! See there it is, a Little River CDS, and I look again at the Las Vegas offer and it is a manuscript postmark, and yes to the same lady, written in the same hand. Well! I was sold! Didn't hurt that the other cover was a registered letter double rate in excellent condition.

    Little River manuscript.jpg


    Now for that Sale#14. Now I had to have the almost almost matching Little River cover. There were several other must have lots in that sale for me, including a large lot of combined Humboldt and Mendocino remainders, covers not quite good enough for a listing by its self, but desirable.
    The last two Wells Fargo covers above, the Sawtooth Puntas Arenas, and the Mendocino Wells Fargo, both were some of those several others I just mentioned.

    This rare Puntas Arenas oval was another of the must haves.


    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Sep 29, 2014
  18. littleriverphil

    littleriverphil Active Member

    Are ya still with me? I think I ran into a limit on how many pics per post. Couldn't get the Little River CDS to attach. Here we are.

    Little River cds.jpg

    Wondering when I'll get up north to Humboldt? I reasoned that I could bid high on the large lot of Humboldt and Mendocino, and sell the Humboldt. Yeah, that worked, Now I have another county.But like Mendocino it was a redwood producing county, and just right next door so to speak.
    Turns out Humboldt was the northern route to the goldfields, and handled a larger volume of mail. This extra fine manuscript Bucksport ( only one recorded ) apparently got a free ride on the Wells Fargo Ophir stage, it was Lodge business after all!

    Bucksport 5 cents.JPG
    Bucksport soon became part of Eureka on Humboldt bay, the largest California port north of San Francisco, at first called Humboldt Bay Uniontown.

    Humboldt Bay Uniontown 1857.JPG

    then called Eureka HB

    Eureka H.B. Wells Fargo.JPG

    Then finally just Eureka.

    Eureka Cal Wells Fargo.JPG

    Just a little north of Eureka is Arcata, home to a patriotic citizen who sent this 34 star flag to Maine during the civil war, even the cover is red ( stamp and flag ) white (envelope was once ) and blue ( the cancel and killer ) Arcata Patriotic 34 star flag.JPG
  19. I_Love_Stamps

    I_Love_Stamps Member

    Welcome! I too am a returning member. I was known as JAY and had either my #2 or #4 as my avatar but lost all my log in and account information so had to just make a new profile...lol I'm from Jersey Shore, PA originally but now live in Clearfield PA.
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