11 September 2013
Pinkerton Investigations and Post Masters Monitoring Mail in 1900
One encounters a variety of references in manuscript records.
This image is part of a letter written on 6 July 1900 by W. T. Sullivan, Inspector in Charge, Denver Division to the United States Chief Post Office Inspector. The letter summarized the current state of Sullivan's investigation in Philip A. Troutfetter and was obtained from the files of the Kansas State Historical Society.
Apparently Sullivan had been in communication with someone from the Pinkerton Agency in regards to Troutfetter. It appears that the Pinkerton Agency had already been investigating Troutfetter when Sullivan began his investigation. I've contacted the archives of the Pinkerton Agency and we'll see if they have any materials from this time period and what those material might entail.
It's also interesting to note that the Post Master in North Platte, Nebraska, had been given a copy of Troutfetter's handwriting. Troutfetter's sister, Mrs. A. J. Senter, lived in North Platte during the time Troutfetter was being investigated and her mail was being monitored for communication from her brother. The Post Master did not open her mail, but the report by Sullivan indicated that the Post Master from North Platte was keeping track of the dates she received mail from Troutfetter, the return addresses on that mail and the dates the mail was received in North Platte.
We'll have an update about the Pinkerton records when there is one. The monitoring of Senter's mail is interesting, to say the least.