Bakersfield in Kern County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)
Wells, Fargo & Company Express Oﬃce
The discovery of gold in California in 1849 started one of the greatest migrations in American history.
After moving west to seek their fortune in California, people living in mining camps had to travel long distances to a large city to send or receive mail and go to a bank. Sometimes the road to town was treacherous with robbers trying to steal gold from traveling miners.
Henry Wells and William Fargo founded a banking and express company in 1852 to provide services closer to these booming camps. Wells, Fargo & Company transported gold, mail and freight from offices in small mining camps and towns to larger centers of commerce across the country.
This exhibit displays artifacts utilized in a Wells Fargo office in the 1870s. The first Wells, Fargo & Company office in Kern County was established in the early county seat of Havilah in 1867.
In 1959, Stella Zumwalt donated two small ranch houses from Old River to construct this re-creation of a Wells, Fargo and Company express office.
Erected by Kern County Museum.
Location. 35° 23.559′ N, 119° 1.244′ W. Marker is in Bakersfield, California, in Kern County. Marker can be reached from Chester Avenue. Click for map
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Miller and Lux Survey Office (a few steps from this marker); Doctor's Office (a few steps from this marker); Sheepherder's Cabin (a few steps from this marker); Photographer’s Studio (a few steps from this marker); Weller House (a few steps from this marker); Pinkney House (within shouting distance of this marker); Drug Store (within shouting distance of this marker); Bandstand (within shouting distance of this marker). Click for a list of all markers in Bakersfield.
Also see . . .
1. History of Wells Fargo – Since 1852. (Submitted on December 5, 2009.)
2. Overland Via Stagecoach. From 1852 to 1918, Wells Fargo rushed customers’ important business by any means - steamship, railroad, and, where the railroads ended, by stagecoach. At first Wells Fargo contracted with independent stageline owners. Then in the great enterprise of building reliable transcontinental transportation, Wells Fargo came to own and operate the largest stagecoach empire in the world. (Submitted on December 5, 2009, by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California.)
3. Kern County Museum - Wells, Fargo & Express Company. The Kern County Museum website quotes the text of the marker as well as displaying a photo. (Submitted on December 5, 2009.)
Categories. • Industry & Commerce • Notable Buildings •
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California. This page has been viewed 1,031 times since then and 33 times this year. This page was the Marker of the Week Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9. submitted on , by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.