Probably one of the earliest forms of self-advertising conducted by Fred Locke. This is an 1893 postmarked illustrated, advertising postal cover that predates the construction of Fred's factory and the development of his porcelain insulator designs. The postal cover suggests that the mainstay of his business was his steel insulator pin with wooden threaded cob (patent no. 493,434, March 14, 1893). Only one example of this Locke insulator pin is known.
Since the cover dates from the earliest beginnings of his business, Locke was probably working from home on Coville Street in Victor, NY. It is interesting to note that the cover is addressed to Smith and Denison, his patent attorneys, with whom Locke apparently had a long association. Who knows what invention concocted by Locke's fertile mind was conveyed in this envelope? I have not seen any examples of Fred Locke's handwriting, but I think there is an excellent probability that the cover was addressed by Fred himself.
A watermark has been added to the digital image to discourage unauthorized reuse of the image and preserve its value for the subsequent owner of this cover who can decide how publicly accessible he/she wants to make the cover.
As always, this historical artifact is offered in trade for your better CALIFORNIA insulators or CALIFORNIA paper ephemera.