Cover exhibiting early usage of Wells Fargo Stamp, U. S. Scott 143LU3, created by pasting the top of a 3-cent stamped envelope, U. S. Scott U34, to the bottom of a separate envelope. Cancelled with a blue oval Wells Fargo & Co. cancel from Virginia City, Nevada Territory. Addressed to E. E. Rofs at Murphy's Camp, California.
This letter is from the 1862-1864 Wells Fargo service that is sometimes referred to as the "Virginia City Pony" service that was established by Wells, Fargo & Co. on August 11, 1862. Letters were required to be enclosed within a franked government stamped envelope, plus a 10-cent Pony Express adhesive for each 1/2 ounce.
This service provided for communications between gold and silver mining towns and Sacramento and San Francisco, California. Ponies were used to carry the mail between Virginia City and Placerville. Between Placerville and Sacramento and San Francisco mail was carried by rail.