Mobile: 1857. Broadside, 10.5 x 8.5 inches. Old folds, minor wear and toning. Addressed and postmarked on verso. In French. Very good. Item #354
An unrecorded circular from Mobile, Alabama, that relates the effects of the Panic of 1857 on the cotton market there, as reported by Charles Henri Pillchody, the French Vice Consul stationed in the city, who also dabbled as a cotton broker there. He writes, in part and in translation, "The financial crisis of which I spoke in my last [circular], has not been the last word, the numerous bankruptcies that took place undoubtedly had to lead to other houses following them, that is what happened, and every day the telegraph tells us of still new disasters in all parts of the Union. Yesterday we heard of the suspension of 14 banks in New York, many of which were generally believed to be solid, and all this resembled a repetition of the debacle of 1837, and today we must expect anything. Where this crisis will end no one knows..." Ships sailing for Le Havre have been delayed, and the price of cotton has fallen from sixteen cents to nine in fifteen days, but if paid in gold, would be six.
Pillichody (1822 -1892) came to Mobile in 1850, and entered the cotton firm of Volts & DeKahm. He next became a member of the firm of Belloc & Pillichody, cotton brokers, on whose stationary this circular was issued, primarily aimed at European buyers. Pillichody goes on to discuss the size of the cotton crop, the effect of the turmoil on Europe, and that in "New Orleans we learn that a few factors and a few banks have been forced to suspend [but for] many others, so far there has been no bankruptcy." Addressed to Messrs. J & C Leydecker, New York, and postmarked 16 October, Mobile. Rare, OCLC locates no copies of this circular, nor any similar.