. Bifolium, i.e., 4 pages of lined paper, 23 lines per page, ~ 10 words per line, ~ 900+ words. 9-3/4" x 7-5/8". Now housed in an archival mylar sleeve. Age-toning, especially along fold-line. Penmanship clear & easily read. Item #47639
While no year is written on the ALs itself, we posit 1851, as the Maritime Heritage website shows the only visit to San Francisco by the Washington was July 21, 1851, arriving from Baltimore [per a newspaper entry in the Daily Alta]. That said, per a online perpetual calender, March 14th came on a Tuesday in 1852, not 1851. We lean towards 1851 as the actual year this letter was written.
And this historic letter is replete with interesting content written by a man bound for the promised land of California. Chamberlin is from Boston, writing a newsy letter his sister, posted from the Harbor of Pernambuco [Brazil], March 14 where the ship in taking on supplies, including coal. He describes the voyage thus far, the expense of the company that sent him, and the trip ahead around the Horn, expecting to arrive in California in about 30 days. He describes conditions aboard the ship, the places he has visited, the people he has met in Brazil, his own experiences with the heat and fever, and more.
Letters from this era are apprearing ever more infrequently on the market.