[Boston?]: 1900. pp., on a bifolium. Quarto. Previously folded. Light wear along old folds and a couple of short closed tears at lower edge. Very good. Item #569
Rare illustrated prospectus for the potentially fraudulent Bernalillo Oil Company, based in Boston and San Diego at the turn of the 20th century. The text promises astounding returns, stating that, "Few in the East appreciate the stupendous nature of this great industrial awakening, and the unparalleled opportunity it affords for large profits on even limited investments." The promoters further advise readers to send away for more complete information about the company's holdings and business plans, and provides a list of references to contact for confirmation of their bona fides. Strangely, despite its extensive endorsement of the oil industry in California, the land it advertises is 6,400 acres in New Mexico, between Fort Wingate and the Navajo Reservation, as is the town of Bernalillo. A 1905 article in the business periodical United States Investor cast serious doubt on the venture, writing in response to a query about the trustworthiness of the company that, "The stocks have no market value, and intrinsically they are not believed to be worth more than the paper they are printed on." We locate only one copy, at Yale.