Title: Territory of Montana.
Signed: Signed by Author(s)
Edgerton (1818-1900) was an Ohio one-term congressman and lawyer who was appointed chief justice of the Idaho Territorial Supreme Court in 1863 and then as first Territorial Governor of Montana in 1864. Partly-Printed Document Signed (NOT by Edgerton), 1p, 7¼" X 3¼", Virginia City, MT, 1865 February 25. Near fine. Handsomely printed by the Montana Post Print, the first newspaper printed in the Montana Territory starting in 1864 and only the second printing press in that territory (the first being in Bannock in 1863). Fine full-length woodcut of an axe-wielding Native American at left, with "Territory of Montana" in large ornate typeface above the partly-printed portion at right. This mining claim, entirely in the hand of and signed at the conclusion by County Recorder Robert N. Hill, records that Sidney Edgerton makes a claim on the Apollo Lode near the Mill Creek District. Virginia City, county seat of Madison County, became a lawless gold rush boom town in 1863; the following year the Montana Territory was established, and about two weeks before the document was written, on February 7, 1865, Virginia City was named the capital of the Montana Territory. Despite selfless efforts to aid the new territory, often at his own expense, Governor Edgerton was not popular, and later in 1865 he returned to the practice of law in Ohio. This mining claim is a handsome and early example of Montana Territorial printing, and unique in its connection to that territory's first governor. Bookseller Inventory # 40403
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