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Mail, Southern Overland


MAIL, SOUTHERN OVERLAND, also known as the Butterfield Overland Mail, was the first land mail route from the East to California. On 3 March 1857, Congress authorized a semiweekly service on a twenty-five-day schedule at $600,000 per year. Postmaster General Aaron V. Brown, a native of Tennessee, chose a southern route, running from St. Louis and Memphis to San Francisco. Service began 15 September 1858 and lasted until the outbreak of the Civil War, when the line was moved to a more northerly route.


Hafen, LeRoy R. The Overland Mail, 1849–1869: Promoter of Settlement, Precursor of Railroads. Cleveland, Ohio: A. H. Clark, 1926. Reprint, New York: AMS Press, 1969. Reprint, Mansfield Center, Conn.: Martino, 2002.

Tallack, William. The California Overland Express. Los Angeles: Historical Society of Southern California, 1935.

Leroy R.Hafen/a. r.

See alsoPostal Service, U.S. ; Stagecoach Travel .

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