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Accessory Transit Co. of Nicaragua - $1,000 Bond - Very Important

Inv# SB5013   Bond
Accessory Transit Co. of Nicaragua - $1,000 Bond - Very Important
Country: Nicaragua
State(s): New York
Years: 1855

Chas. Morgan signed $1,000 Bond. So Important and historic! Though not signed by Commodore Vanderbilt, this piece is very important as it is signed by Morgan. Charles Morgan (1795-1878), once named the largest ship-owner in the U.S., was entirely self educated. Son of a Welsh immigrant, Morgan moved to New York City. By age 21, he had started his own business selling provisions to ships.

Shortly after, this entrepreneur’s innate business sense helped him to become involved with sailing vessels to the West Indies. From this point, Morgan’s empire grew, including lines of mail steamers (The Morgan Line) connecting New York with Texas. During the 1850’s, Morgan became involved with Vanderbilt’s Nicaragua Transit on the Atlantic, for which he was an agent in New York and later became president in 1853, after Vanderbilt went to Europe. During Vanderbilt’s absence, Morgan and C.K. Garrison manipulated stock prices, causing Vanderbilt to lose a great deal while they continued to earn money. Morgan and Garrison attempted to gain control of the Nicaraguan government and obtain rights of the Transit.

Allegedly, Vanderbilt did not pursue litigation against the two men because “the law takes too long” and is reported to have said, “I will ruin you.” Vanderbilt was successful in closing the Transit, with the help of Sylvanus Spencer and Costa Rican troops, who traveled to Nicaragua and applied pressure. Fortunately for Morgan, the closing of the Nicaragua Transit did not ruin his finances. Of course, this companies claim to fame was to facilitate delivery of goods and passengers to the gold fields of California.

Ships would unload on the Atlantic side, delivery by land through Nicaragua to the Pacific side and then continue by ship to California. Later, the Civil War provided Morgan with increased business from the U.S. government; he chartered and sold a multitude of his steamers during this time. This Rare Autographed Bond is signed by Charles Morgan and his associates. We had occasion (20 years ago) to visit a stock and bond dealer in Switzerland. He showed us a similar bond signed by Commodore Vanderbilt. What a thrilling piece and likely worth $20,000 or so at present! Since then, we’ve never seen an example of this historic bond. The bond is Certificate #3 and dated 1855. A very important part of the history of shipping and the Gold Rush. Rare and Excellent Condition. Read more at

The Accessory Transit Company was a company set up by Cornelius Vanderbilt and others during the California Gold Rush in the 1850s, to transport would-be prospectors from the east coast of the United States to the west coast.

At the time, an overland journey across the US was an arduous undertaking and could last many weeks. The Accessory Transit Company instead took passengers by steamer from New York to San Juan del Norte on the Caribbean or Mosquito Coast of Nicaragua. From there, they travelled up the Rio San Juan to Lake Nicaragua, crossing the lake to the town of Rivas. A stagecoach then crossed the narrow isthmus to San Juan del Sur, where another steamer travelled to San Francisco.

The ATC provided the cheapest route to California from the east coast, and was soon carrying 2,000 passengers a month at a fare of $300 each, later reduced to $150. The wealth generated by the route attracted efforts to take it over, and in 1854 the US Navy bombarded San Juan del Norte in response to demands from the town authorities that the company vacate their premises immediately.

In 1855, the filibuster William Walker installed himself as President of Nicaragua, taking over the ATC's assets in the country in the process; he was ousted in 1857 by forces backed by Vanderbilt. Having regained control of the ATC, Vanderbilt approached the Pacific Mail Steamship Company and the United States Mail Steamship Company, which operated routes across Panama, and offered to stop running the Nicaragua route in return for a $40,000 monthly stipend. The companies accepted this offer, and a year later increased the stipend to $56,000 when Vanderbilt threatened to reopen the Transit line, but the ATC did not run again.

Vanderbilt's original contract with the Nicaraguan government allowing him to operate the ATC also gave him exclusive rights to construct a Nicaragua Canal until 1861. In the event, political instabilities in Nicaragua as well as its frequent volcanic eruptions conspired to make Panama a more attractive location for a trans-Central American canal.

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Condition: Excellent

A bond is a document of title for a loan. Bonds are issued, not only by businesses, but also by national, state or city governments, or other public bodies, or sometimes by individuals. Bonds are a loan to the company or other body. They are normally repayable within a stated period of time. Bonds earn interest at a fixed rate, which must usually be paid by the undertaking regardless of its financial results. A bondholder is a creditor of the undertaking.

Item ordered may not be exact piece shown. All original and authentic.
Price: $2,375.00