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August 10, 2011

Trade card with Golden Spike

Filed under: Item of the Day — Lizzie Ehrenhalt @ 9:30 am

Trade card with the Golden Spike

Trade card advertising Proctor & Hamilton Printers of Minneapolis and the Northern Pacific Railway.  The card announces the upcoming completion of the railway’s main line as symbolized by “the golden spike to be driven by President [Henry] Villard of the N[orthern] P[acific] R[ailwa]y, Sept[ember] 8th, 1883″ in Gold Creek, Montana.  Once its eastern and western halves were united, the line stretched from St. Paul to the Pacific coast.

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2 Responses to “Trade card with Golden Spike”

  1. Norma Jean Kelly Says:

    As president of Montana Capitol Restoration Foundation, I am working on our annual fundraiser, Capitol Ornaments. To commemorate the 130th anniversary of NP Driving the Golden Spike on Sept. 8, 1883, we have chosen it to be the subject of next year’s ornament.
    In researching the event we found that while a golden spike was produced, it wasn’t used. What happened to the spike? Where is it now? Do you have any information on it’s location?
    We would appreciate any information that you can share with us. Thank you.
    Norma Jean Kelly
    7683 US Highway 12 West
    Helena MT 59601

    Lizzie Ehrenhalt reply on August 6th, 2012:

    Norma Jean,

    Thanks for your comment. I was unable to find any clues to the golden spike’s current whereabouts (if indeed it was preserved after its original use) in MHS collections. But Matt Anderson, curator of transportation at the Henry Ford, alerted me to this digital record for a similar spike in the collections of the Washington State Historical Society. You may wish to contact them for more information. The Montana Historical Society may also be helpful.

    Lizzie Ehrenhalt
    Collections Assistant

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