Today in Postal History


United States Domestic Use
May 7, 1860

This ratty cover encloses quite a story.
First, the cover was sent from Seneca Falls, New York.
Seneca Falls is at the north end of the Finger Lakes about 55 km west southwest of Syracuse in upstate New York.
The cover is clearly missing some stamps and the remaining 1 Franklin has been damaged.
I suspect that the cover once had 3 Franklins.
The cover has a single strike of what is termed a 'balloon' CDS for Seneca Falls.

The destination was Mogadore, Ohio, about 10 km southeast of Akron.

What makes this cover intriguing is its contents.

This little drawing of what is clearly a balloon was in the text of the letter enclosed in the cover.

The first page of the letter reads as follows:

Seneca Falls May the two[?]
Dr. Bradley
         I thought I would write
you a line to let you know
that I am not 'rubed out' yet
But I have had one of the d____
d____ d___ d d___dest
colds you ever heard of
perfectly awful. Came near
terminating in fever but Homeopathy
was to much for its. I have
just got the gas bag completed
& it's a stunner[?]. I will give you
the dimentions
length from car to top 70 ft
Diameter 36 feet
No of yards of cloth 743
Amount of sewing 5,900 ft
Capacity in cubic feet 25,000
Weight 300 lbs
Amount of varnish used in preparing the cloth 50 galons.

Obviously, this is a letter which deserves some more
research but that will have to wait for another round tuit.

An initial search suggests that this letter was from
Thaddeus Lowe, the pioneeringCivil War balloonist.
There is a reference on this page to Thaddeus
Lowe in connection with Seneca Falls ballooning.
Search for seneca.


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