News

Langton Express/Langton's Pioneer Express: 1850-65

By Joel Langton

April 2010


Samuel W. Langton founded Langton Express, a one-man opperation in February 1850 with a route from Marysville up the Yuba River to Downieville (where its headquarters were based) via Grass Valley and Nevada City. In February 1855, 5 years after his business had started, he sold out to Adams and Company, but that company failed two days later. Presumably they hadnt paid all they owed him, as Langton took back the company and formed Langton's Pioneer Express, which he ran for almost another ten years until 1864. In this time the express expanded its opperation and took on staff.


The company was also a passenger transportation company.


On 24th August 1864 he died from injuries sustained in an accident. The newspaper report below:

TUESDAY, 16 AUG 1864. SAD ACCIDENT - The Gold Hill (N.T.) 'News' of August 13th: Samuel LANGTON, well known in connection with Langton's Express Company, met with a terrible accident last night near Silver City. In endeavoring to pass with his sulky ox team heavily loaded with lumber, he was caught against the bank, his sulky crushed and himself thrown beneath the wheels of the wagon. His right leg was crushed so terribly that amputation was necessary and the operation was performed by Dr. TJADER, of Carson. LANGTON lies at the Golden Gate in great suffering.


Another newspaper reported on the same accident:

SERIOUS ACCIDENT - Virginia City, Aug. 12 : A horse ran away this evening with a buggy containing Samuel W. LANGTON, of Langton's Express. The buggy was upset and LANGTON very seriously injured.


Following his death, his family unsuccessfully continued the business until the next year when they sold out to Lamping and Company, who in turn sold out to Wells Fargo and Company a little while later.


Other pieces of data show that Samuel had a Brother, W. T. Langton and another relative involved in the business was John C Langton whose initials appear on some of the mail labels and who was also of Yuba County, California.

Are you a descendant of one of these Langtons? Do you have more information on them or their relatives? If you do please get in contact.