March 07, 2014
March 7, 1835. In the dark ages, before the birth of express companies, sending money was precarious. James Chandler and James R. Brooks wrote from Kentucky to a brother in Virginia, who owed them money: "Have the money in bank notes, and cut the note exactly in two pieces and send one half in a letter directed to James Chandler and then the other half in another letter directed to James R. Brooks, and you know when we get them we can easily paste them together. And, dear brother, we will both humbly thank you to be very expeditious and particular how you fix the letters. Write plain and permanent, and go yourself to the post office and have the letters nicely sealed [with wax] and a stamp fixed upon each seal and then put them into the office." During the Gold Rush 15 years later, Californians would have had difficulty splitting gold coins, but happily expresses safely hurried money to and fro around the United States.