Letter written to Nathan Kelsey Hall
On March 8, 1851, the postmaster general had written to six prominent engraving firms in the United States, including Rawdon, Wright, Hatch & Edson, inviting them to bid on the new contract for the production of postage stamps and to submit proposed designs for the new 3-cent stamp. This letter is the indignant reply of Rawdon, Wright, Hatch & Edson, refusing to enter into the competition for the new 3-cent stamp unless the cost of producing a new die is covered by the Department, regardless of whether they win the competition or not. They complain that the costs of producing the 5-cent and 10-cent plates have not been covered by the minimal profits associated with producing stamps from them. They will not furnish future stamps at rates lower than they are currently receiving.