Butterfield Mail and Stage Line
One of major horse-drawn transportation projects of history. Was authorized by Act of Congress on March 3, 1857. Contract for semi-weekly service overland to San Francisco, California, was awarded to company headed by John Butterfield; another stockholder in the $2,000,000 venture was express pioneer William G. Fargo. The line employed some 2,000 people and used hundreds of stagecoaches and thousands of animals. In addition to receipts from freight and passengers, it had a $600,000 annual subsidy for carrying U.S. Mail.
Company operated from September 1858 to February 1861 with a 25-day schedule for the 2,795 mile trip (8 to 9 days were allowed for crossing Texas). Route began in Tipton, Mo., and Memphis,TN., uniting at Fort Smith, AR., entering Texas near Sherman, thence westward through the Comanche-held frontier, leaving the state at El Paso.
Stage stations were located about every 20 miles and the best known in this vicinity were Fort Belknap, Fort Phantom Hill, Mountain Pass and Fort Chadbourne. Between Fort Belknap and Tucson, AZ., mules were used to pull the coaches as they were less appealing to Indians. Each coach
Butterfield Trail U.S. Mail Route St. Louis to Los Angeles 1858-1861 crossed at this point. Marked by John Davis Chapter. D.A.R. 1929
Erected 1969 by State Historical Survey Committee. (Marker Number 583.)
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Communications • Industry & Commerce • Roads & Vehicles. In addition, it is included in the Butterfield Overland Mail series list. A significant historical month for this entry is February 1861.
Location. 32° 27.555′ N, 99° 52.875′ W. Marker is in Tye, Texas, in Taylor County. Marker is on FM 20 W (Interstate 20) half a mile west of FM-707, on the right when traveling west. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Tye TX 79563, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 7 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Butterfield Trail (here, next to this marker); Air Force Medal of Honor Recipients (approx. 4.2 miles away); 7th Bombardment Wing, Heavy (approx. 4.2 miles away); Lt. Col. William E. Dyess (approx. 4.3 miles away); 12th Armored Division at Camp Barkeley (approx. 4˝ miles away); 12th Armored Division Memorial (approx. 4˝ miles away); Dyess Elementary School (approx. 4.9 miles away); Site of Western Cattle Trail (approx. 6.4 miles away).
More about this marker. The D.A.R. marker and Texas Historical Committee marker are adjacent. Since HMdb allows only one four digit date, the earliest marker date at this site was used, the text detail from the 1969 marker added on this page.
Also see . . . Butterfield Stage. A historical web page on the Butterfield Stage and history of that business partnership. (Submitted on April 9, 2011, by Chris English of Phoenix, Arizona.)
Additional keywords. Stagecoach, Wells Fargo, Stage, Merkel
Credits. This page was last revised on November 30, 2020. It was originally submitted on April 9, 2011, by Chris English of Phoenix, Arizona. This page has been viewed 1,359 times since then and 66 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on April 9, 2011, by Chris English of Phoenix, Arizona. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.