An understanding of the earliest Post Offices and mails of the Colorado gold regions is dependent on an understanding of the stage coach companies. The earliest mails were carried on foot up the “Trapper’s Trail” to Fort Laramie. The stage coach era began when the first Leavenworth & Pike’s Peak Express Company coach rolled into Denver on May 7, 1859. The following is an outline of the most important developments:
1. Leavenworth & Pike’s Peak Express Company – Carried mails over the Republican River route between Denver City and Leavenworth City between May 7, 1859 and June 7, 1859. Route changed to Platte Valley and continued until handstamp replaced by Jones & Russells on July 19, 1859.
2. Jones & Russells Pike’s Peak Express Company handstamp introduced supplanting Leavenworth & Pike’s Peak Express handstamp. Continued express service until taken over by C.O.C. & P.P. Express in February, 1860.
3. Central Overland California & Pike’s Peak Express Company operated from February, 1860 until it was sold to Ben Holladay in March, 1862.
4. Hinckley’s Express was founded in 1860 and operated between the mining regions west of Denver to Denver and then on to Omaha City, Nebraska. The company was purchased by
C.O.C. & P.P. on May, 1861.
5. Well’s Fargo & Company did not operate in Colorado until 1866 and only continued until 1869.
6. Rocky Mountain Transportation Company