1864 MAIL ROUTE, August 10.
"At last we have something tangible regarding mail service in our long neglected Territory. The Santa Fe papers contain the official advertisement for a contract to carry a weekly mail from Albuquerque to Prescott by the 35th parallel, the Whipple route. It is in these words with additional details:"
"'POSTOFFICE DEPARTMENT, August 10, 1864.'"
"'PROPOSALS will be received at the Contract Office of this Department until 3 p.m. of Tuesday, the 15th of November next (to be decided by the 17th) for conveying the United States mails in the Territory of Arizona from the 1st of January, 1865, or as soon thereafter as practicable, to the 30th of June, 1866, on the route and by the schedule of departures and arrivals following, viz:'"
"'14466: From Albuquerque (New Mexico), by Atriseo, Fort Wingate, Covero, Agua Fria, Zuni, Jacob's Well (Arizona), Leroux Springs, and Woolsey's Ranch, to Prescott. 450 miles and back, once a week.'"
"'Leave Albuquerque Sunday at 12 m; Arrive at Prescott in 6 days by 12 m; Leave Prescott Thursday at 12 m; Arrive at Albuquerque in 6 days by 12 m.'"
"We are authorized by the Postmaster General to place the advertisement in our columns, but the authority came at too late a day to be available. The contract was to be decided by the 17th of the present month. We care not who gets it if the service be promptly and faithfully performed."
"It will be noticed that there is an error in the arrangement of the points upon the route. It doubtless is the intention to have the mail carried from Leroux's fork, of the Little Colorado, or thereabouts, by the Chavez cut off, via Woolsey's Ranch to Prescott, and not by Leroux's spring which is at the foot of the San Francisco mountain, on the old (Pishon) road."
"With twelve relays, which we learn is the number to be allowed, the service can readily be performed within the six days named, and we shall be put within quick and satisfactory communication with out friends upon the Rio Grande. Moreover we shall, (if peace is made with the Indians upon the plains,) be in receipt of news from Colorado and the states in much less time than hitherto, with proper connections we should have the Denver papers, with New York and San Francisco telegrams of the previous day, within twelve to fourteen days. This will give us new life, and be of vast consequence to our remote Territory."
"Elsewhere we reprint an article from the Santa Fe Gazette showing the importance of the new route as a beginning of an overland mail from the Atlantic to the Pacific, over the 35th parallel. Should service be put upon the route from Los Angeles, via Fort Mohave, or that from Los Angeles to La Paz, to Prescott, both of which routes we understand to have been authorized by Congress, we shall have a through line possessing such marked advantages over any yet established that its permanency and popularity can hardly be a matter of question."
(Arizona Miner; Fort Whipple; November 23, 1864; page 2.)
"WINGATE EXPRESS. --- Messrs. Parrish, Pennington, and Adams arrived at Prescott on Sunday evening, with papers and letters from Albuquerque, Santa Fe, and the States. They left Wingate on the evening of the 7th, and found the road in bad condition owing to frequent snow storms. They report a comapny of cavalry within a weeks' travel of Fort Whipple, also a train of goods sent by Messrs. Huning, of Albuquerque, and accompanied by one of the members of that firm. Captain Hargrave and Lieut. Taylor, formerly of the California Volunteers at Fort Whipple, are also coming with the intention of making their homes in this vicinity. They started with a large drove of sheep, but were robbed of some hundreds by Navajos or Apaches."
"On the way to Wingate, at a point near Bear Spring, the expressmen came suddenly upon a band of Indians, supposed to be Apaches. They fired at once, and the Indians fled in confusion, leaving a fine horse. The expressmen think that they killed one or two of the Indians."
"Mr. Lennan, of the Express, remains at Santa Fe, and has put in a bid for the mail contract from Albuquerque here, referred to in another column."
(Arizona Miner; Fort Whipple; November 23, 1864; page 3.)