Comstock Tunnel Company (Signed by Theodore Sutro)
Comstock Tunnel Company (Signed by Theodore Sutro)
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Beautifully engraved antique bond certificate from the Sutro Tunnel Company dating back to the 1880's. This document, which is signed by the company President (Theodore Sutro) and Secretary, was printed by the Homer Lee Bank Note Company and measures approximately 10" (w) by 13 1/2" (h).
This certificate's vignette features an eagle perched on a shield.
You will receive the exact certificate pictured.
The Comstock Tunnel Company was incorporated under laws of New York in 1889, as successor to the Sutro Tunnel Company for the purpose of draining and ventilating the Comstock mines in Nevada. The reorganization was basically a family affair with original founder Adolf Sutro dumping his stock and brother Theodore picking them up.
The company had 7 1/2 miles of underground tunnel. The Comstock mines, which benefited because of the tunnel, paid a 4% royalty of their output to the Comstock Tunnel Company for drainage and ventilation.
The company's property consisted of about 5,000 acres of mineral land and 4,500 acres of ranch land in Carson Valley, Nevada.
In 1898, Theodore Sutro sold his stock to New York lawyer Franklin Leonard Sr. With Leonard’s leadership a group of Eastern businessmen either ended up as majority stock holders in the major Comstock mines or were able to get them under their control. These mines included the Savage, Bonanza, California, Hale & Norcross, Virginia, Gould & Curry, Potosi, and Best & Belcher.
With consolidation of mines under the leadership of the Comstock Tunnel Company, the company was able to keep on going. New pumps and pipes were installed. A mule transportation system was replaced by a steam engine, and eventually electricity would be installed. The tunnel kept pumping water and removing waste (at 40 cents a ton in the 1890’s).
The Leonard family wound up controlling the company into the 1950's.
Sutro was born in Aachen, Germany, the son of a cloth manufacturer.
The family moved to Baltimore, and Sutro eventually attended Harvard College and Columbia Law before joing the family's import business.
He became a noted financier, most notably in his efforts to save his brother's Sutro mining effort. Through a banking syndicate, he raised over a million dollars to rescue the Sutro Tunnel Company and reorganize it as the Comstock Tunnel Company. He held the presidency of the company through 1894.
He later concentrated on the law, and eventually founded the firm of Sutro & Wright.
Sutro remained close to his German roots, serving as President of the Deutsches Journal, President of the German Publication Society, President of the German-American Alliance of the State of New York, and President of the United German Societies of the City of New York.
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