"Before the completion of the transcontinental railroad in 1869, commerce between the East Coast of the US and its western territories were extremely limited, choices boiled down to either shipping the goods around South America's Cape Horn a land journey across the continent. With the California gold rush in 1849, the opportunities for the reliable transportation of goods and currency increased dramatically.
During the 1850s and 1860s, Wells Fargo became known as the premier provider of financial and commercial transport services. Its overland stagecoach line encompassed over 3,000 miles across the west, with routes to California, Montana, Colorado, and Neraska.
The coaches used by Wells Fargo were constructed by J. Stephens Abbott and Lewis Downing at their factory in Concord, New Hampshire. They were built tall and wide to better accommodate the less-than-smooth dirt trails available. These wagons used a suspension made from thick bullhide, rather than steel, giving their coaches a remarkably smooth ride."