Henry Wells

Wells, Henry, 1805–78, American pioneer expressman, b. Thetford, Vt. As a child he moved with his family to central New York state. In 1843 he established express service between New York City and Buffalo and successfully competed with the U.S. Post Office by carrying mail at less than the government rate. His association with William G. Fargo began in 1844, when Wells & Company was organized. In 1846, Wells temporarily abandoned most of his other commercial interests to concentrate on the transatlantic trade. Together with William Fargo, he organized (1852) Wells, Fargo & Company to handle express service to California and the West. Wells made his home in Aurora, N.Y., where he founded Wells Seminary (now Wells College). A stammerer, he established several schools for those similarly afflicted.

See N. M. Loomis, Wells Fargo (1968).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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