An amazing envelope from Cascade City fetched $240 Cdn on eBay.
The front bears a return address of the Cascade Development Co., which owned the townsite, and a Jan. 12, 1900 Cascade cancel. It’s addressed to company president Aaron Chandler of Gardner, North Dakota.
Chandler made a career of following railway routes and platting townsites, including an eponymous addition to Colville, on which he built an hotel.
But what makes this item so desirable is the backside, which features a map showing part of the Boundary and West Kootenay, and lists a series of mining rushes at 10-year increments: California, 49, Australia ’59, Comstock (Nevada), ’69, Leadville (Colorado), ’79; Transvaal (South Africa) ’89; and Boundary “right now.”
Cascade is further dubbed “the Gateway City of the Boundary Country” and the map shows it as the region’s leading town, which even then was a stretch. Also indicated is the route of the Columbia and Western Railway between Robson and Midway and the Boundary’s mineral resources – copper, gold, silver, and galena.
The Cascade Development Co. was incorporated in Spokane in 1897, capitalized at $500,000 with the stated purpose “To carry on the business of miners,” which is odd, since it was mainly concerned with real estate. Merchant George K. Stocker was the local agent.
The company also vied with the Cascade Water, Power, and Light Co. for control of Cascade Falls. After a long dormancy, it reemerged in 1923 with an irrigation scheme for the Cascade flats.