Baltimore: 1833. Envelope or Cover. This one-page folded letter was written on March 20, 1833 and privately carried to the New York forwarding agents DeRham, Islen, and Moore who placed it aboard the Old Line’s packet ship, Henri IV. (The envelope bears ab oval “De Rham Iseling & Moore” forwarding handstamp. The ship arrived at Le Havre on 14 April as attested to by a circular receiving mark and a “Pays D’Outremer par Le Havre” (Overseas Mail by Le Havre) hand stamp. It was then forwarded to Bordeaux where it arrived on the 18th. The cover is in nice shape. Docketing reads, “1833 / F. de Graft”, and it is signed “Frederic De Graft”. Very good. Item #009383
Phillipe Frederic Clossman (or Clossmann) was a well-regarded wine trader from Bordeaux who also owned several vineyards that are still in operation today (e.g., Château de Malleret). In this letter to Clossmann, de Graft, a Baltimore merchant, places an order with for “good old Brandy” noting that previous correspondence “has induced me to give you a small Order for Brandy & I request you to send one via Newyork or Philad if no direct Opportunity should offer. 12 or 15 Pipes of good old Brandy Dupuy’s Brand in large Pipes & of the same quality you formerly sent me.”Dupuy—actually Otard-Dupuy—brandy, which is still in existence as Baron Otard, was one of the three major cognac houses when this letter was written. It was founded in 1795 by Jean-Baptiste Antoine O’Tard de la Grange, together with two growers-distillers, the brothers Jean and Léon Dupuy. It was located at the Chateau de Valois, an old and beautiful estate in the center of Cognac on the Charente River. The firm prospered and developed a strong following in the United States where Léon Dupuy had many excellent business contacts. A very nice example of a packet mail letter—with an interesting New York forwarding agent marking—to France regarding the importation of some of the finest Cognac available at that time.