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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Blackwell in Coke County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)
 

Southern Overland Mail, 1858-1861

(Butterfield Stage)

 
 
Southern Overland Mail, 1858-1861 Marker image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, October 4, 2014
1. Southern Overland Mail, 1858-1861 Marker
Inscription. Passed near this site, providing for the first time combined passenger and mail service between Pacific and Atlantic Coasts. Operating west from St. Louis and Memphis, John Butterfield’s company used 1350 horses and mules and 90 Concord coaches and wagons.
     Stage traveled at a run, despite lack of good roads. A signal given approaching a station would have fresh horses ready and food on the table for crew and passengers. Route had stations 12 to 113 miles apart, and was sometimes changed to get water. Crew and passengers wore guns; to reduce danger of Indian attacks, mules (less coveted than horses) were used west of Ft. Belknap. The trip one way took 25 days—seven spent crossing Texas, from Preston (now under Lake Texoma) to Jacksboro, Ft. Belknap, Ft. Chadbourne and El Paso. One way fare for the 2700 miles was $200. Passengers rarely stopped off, because they might not find seats on a later stage. Merchants in Jacksboro and other towns used Butterfield’s light freight service to make mail-order sales.
     Greatest contribution of the Overland stage was its carrying news; coaches also brought mail from the west one to 10 days faster than it came by ship.
     Service was ended in 1861 by the Civil War.
 
Erected 1966 by Texas State Historical Survey Committee and Moody
Southern Overland Mail, 1858-1861 Marker image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, October 4, 2014
2. Southern Overland Mail, 1858-1861 Marker
Foundation. (Marker Number 4983.)
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the Butterfield Overland Mail marker series.
 
Location. 32° 0.927′ N, 100° 16.582′ W. Marker is near Blackwell, Texas, in Coke County. Marker is on U.S. 277 0.2 miles north of Texas Highway 70, in the median. Click for map. Marker is located at the northern point of the median created by the separation of the northbound and southbound lanes of US 277 just north of State Highway 70. Marker is in this post office area: Bronte TX 76933, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 9 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Indian Rock Shelters (approx. 0.9 miles away); Route of the Southern Overland Mail Line (approx. 1.5 miles away); Fort Chadbourne (approx. 2.8 miles away); James Franklin Byrd (approx. 8.1 miles away); Hayrick (approx. 8.1 miles away); Bronte Veterans Memorial (approx. 8.9 miles away); Bronte Depot (approx. 8.9 miles away); Fort Chadbourne C.S.A. / Texas Civil War Frontier Defense (approx. 8.9 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Blackwell.
 
More about this marker. Marker is part of the Early Travel, Communication and Transportation series of Texas state markers.
 
Also see . . .
View to Southwest Along US 277 image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, October 4, 2014
3. View to Southwest Along US 277
Marker is located at the northern point of the median created by the separation of the northbound and southbound lanes of US 277

1. Butterfield Overland Mail - Wikipedia entry. (Submitted on October 13, 2014.)
2. Butterfield Overland Mail. From the Texas State Historical Association’s “Handbook of Texas Online”. (Submitted on October 13, 2014.) 
 
Additional comments.
1. Identical Marker
There is an identical marker, erected in 1966 with the assistance of the Moody Foundation, located in central Coke County on State Highway 158 between Bronte and Robert Lee.
    — Submitted May 8, 2015, by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas.

 
Categories. CommunicationsRoads & Vehicles
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas. This page has been viewed 756 times since then and 4 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on , by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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