Wells Fargo - Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Hello!  We would like to begin today's blog by putting something out there.  We know that the American Treasure Tour is not the only place in the world where visitors can experience a wonderful slice of American history.  He are definitely one of the most unusual attractions you will ever run across, with our orchestrions (nickelodeons), classic preserved automobiles, animated store displays and too many other strange and wonderful things to describe here, but we are not the only attraction out there.  So, every now and again we like to provide you, our faithful readers, with different options for day trips.  Today, inspired by one of the pieces we have on display, we would like to recommend that you check out a bank.

Scattered throughout the Toy Box, but mostly lined up majestically against a wall, you will see a row of beautifully handcrafted miniature wagons, all about three feet tall created for children to pull in parades (they have handles and everything).  These pieces were expertly crafted by Amish woodworkers to beautiful and, occasionally, humorous affect.  We will talk about more of them later, but today we would like to focus on one special cart designed to look like a stagecoach.  It has two names on it, indelibly linked to the banking industry:  Wells and Fargo.

The team of Henry Wells and William Fargo was established in 1852, when articles of association were signed in New York City to establish a banking and express service in the distant land of California.  In 1852, there was no intercontinental train - there were not really even any roads that connected the country together.  This was a strange and ambitious plan indeed, but Wells and Fargo saw an opportunity in the wake of the California Gold Rush.  They established what would become an incredibly important part of America's growth.  By 1918, there were more than ten thousand branch offices to Wells Fargo. As of last year, they were down to only 6,314 branch offices; however, that was still substantially more than any other bank serving the United States.  

Equally significant, Wells Fargo is one of very few banks across the United States that celebrates its own history with a series of museums,  There are currently ten spanning the country, from Anchorage, Alaska to Charlotte, North Carolina, four across California and, of course, one in Philadelphia.
QUESTION:  Which of the following cities does not host a Wells Fargo museum in any of their branch offices (yet)?
A)  Cleveland, Ohio
B)  Phoenix, Arizona
C)  Portland, Oregon
D)  Minneapolis, Minnesota

THE SOUTH FALLS.  Yesterday, if you recall, was the anniversary of the secession of South Carolina from the United States of America in 1860.  Well, four years and one day later, the Confederate military government of Georgia surrendered the city of Savannah to the approaching army of General William Tecumseh Sherman.  The war was all but over.  Sherman would lead a devastating attack on the capital of South Carolina, Columbia, and head on into North Carolina, where the southern forces of General Joseph Johnston would surrender at the Bennett Farm in Durham on April 26, 1865.

HAPPY B-DAY, JAMEY!  Speaking of Savannah, Georgia, today we celebrate the birthday of the man who not only founded the city (close enough to already-established Charleston, South Carolina to be able to go to them for help if needed), but who created the Georgia Colony - James Oglethorpe.  He was born in 1696, and was the only colonial founder still alive at the time of the American Revolution. 

ANSWER:  A)  Cleveland, Ohio. Cross your fingers, Cleveland - you may be next!!!!