Wonderful Progress Of Forty-Two Years
Del Norte is the northwestern most county in the State. Its early mining history is stained with blood. Three young men were prospecting on Klamath river in 1857. They were killed by the Indians, and their bodies horribly mutilated. The miners in the vicinity discovered an Indian village, and it is said killed every one it contained, without regard to sex or age, as a punishment for the triple murder.
Happy Camp was the name given to the first resting place of the prospectors. They were sure that the Klamath river was rich in gold, but the best results were obtained from the beach sands in the early days. Some gold is still obtained from the black sands on the shores of the Pacific ocean. Rich quartz ledges have been discovered within a short time, and it is believed the product will be large. There are large deposits of chrome, copper and iron, but it costs too much for transportation to render the working of them profitable.
SISKIYOU COUNTY adjoins Del Norte on the east. The first miners to enter that country in 1850-51 came into favor by claiming to be " Maki " men. A Scotch trapper, named Thomas McKay, had gained their good will by just treatment in the trips he had made gathering furs for the Hudson Bay Company and they were friendly to any whites who looked like " Maki" as they pronounced his name, Donald McKay, who led the Warm Springs Indians in the Modoc war, was his SOD.
The first strike of gold was on Treka creek, in 1851, and the news of its richness spread throughout the State, and caused 2,000 miners to collect there in a very short time. Eich quartz ledges were discovered in the eastern part of the county, and many of the prospectors spread out into what is now Modoc and Lassen counties - indeed produced the formation and organization of Modoc county.
The entrance of the Southern Pacific railroad was worth more to the county than its mines, though these had secured it its first settlers. For the past few years the increase in population and wealth has been very rapid.
;ODOC COUNTY, meaning " hostile stranger," is the northeastern most county in the State. It never was prominent in a mining sense, but possesses enough natural wonders to attract the curious. The Modoc war of 1873 was confined to this county. The Modocs were always treacherous, and while Captain Jack lived, were destructive to the interests of white settlers. Every peaceful method was pursued to make them contented until General Canby was assassinated while having a talk with them. Then their punishment was determined upon, but as they knew aU the intricacies of the mysterious lava beds, it was a long and tedious matter. Finally, Captain Jack, Chief Soonchin, Black Jack and Boston Charley were convicted of murder, and hanged. That produced peace, and since then the county has greatly improved, but feels the want of railroad facilities. Under the lava beds are caves filled with ice which never melts. The surface is wonderful, but the interior more so.
HUMBOLDT COUNTY, was formed May 12, 1853. In 1856 the county seat was fixed at Eureka by the Legislature. T'he county contains about 2,300,000 acres of land, and the valleys and foothills are dotted with prosperous homes. Cpngress has appropriated $1,750,000 to complete the improvements on Humboldt bar and bay, which will make the city of Eureka the shipping point for all of northern California.
The territory comprised in this county was visited by the trapping party under Jedediah Smith, in 1827, but the coast had been visited as early as 1543. On the 26th of February, of that year, Juan E. Cabrillo discovered and named Cape of Perils, and in 160i the Fragata, a small vessel belonging to Vizcaino's fleet, found shelter near Cape Mendocino. But the fine bay of Humboldt was not discovered until 1849, when a party under Dr. Josiah Gregg, traveling overland during the winter months, found and named it.
As early as 1854 ship building was commenced at Eureka. Allen & Co. in that year built the steamer Glide to ply between Eureka and Areata. A great number of vessels have been constructed there since. There are two shipyards at Eureka, and they are both prosperous, employing about 300 men at the present time.
The dairying interests of the county are in fine condition, and are being greatly extended, with the establishment of creameries and the introduction of the latest machinery. Until lately the production of butter and cheese was confined to the Eel river valley, but it is now distributed to the various parts of the county.
Mining, which, in the Trinity excitement, first settled the territory, is taking on new importance. A number of gold placer claims in the Willow creek district were bonded during 1892 by a syndicate which proposes to introduce water, and practically work them. Fifty-two quartz ledge locations have been recorded in the same section, and this activity has necessarily created considerable excitement. Besides the gold industry, petroleum is known to exist in thei. county. In the Mattole section two companies are actively developing, and one has a well down 2,500 feet, and the prospects for an important strike are most promising.
While all other interests are specially prosperous it is the lumber of Humboldt county which has produced its great wealth, the assessments for 1882 aggregating $18,012,051, an increase of more than $1,000,000 over the previous year. When the section was first entered by white men the forests of redwood were unbroken, and trees ranging from 200 to 400 feet high, and measuring from twenty to seventy feet in circumference, covered all the hills. Trees yielding from 50,000 to 100,000 feet of lumber were common. The demand for this fine lumber has caused much of the timber to be felled. In 1892, 165,000,000 feet were exported, and nine cargoes, amounting to 5,325,888 feet, valued at $128,306, were sent to' England. Very much of this large sum was paid for labor, and nearly all of it is expended in the county, adding just that much to its permanent wealth.
The evidences of prosperity are universal. They generally take the shape of improvements of homes, and the building of finer places of business. This is more apparent in the prosperous city of Eureka, because there the expenditures by the Government are. taking place, but they are observed in all the thriving towns in the county. Many thousands of dollars have been put into permanent improvements in Areata, Ferndale, Table Bluflf, and every section of Humboldt. Everywhere are signs indicating the ability of the citizens to live more comfortably and spend more freely. Eureka has adopted city airs, as shown in concrete sidewalks, electric lights, steam heating plants, and great business blocks which would be noticeable in any city in the State. Taking it all in all, Humboldt county offers fine opportunities to the enterprising, whether in business, mining, dairying or general farming.
TRINITY COUNTY is in one of the northern tiers of counties. The San Francisco Chronicle supplies a brief history of Trinity county, which is known to be reliable, and is specially interesting. It was first explored in the early part of this century by the bands of trappers sent out from Vancouver by the Hudson Jay Company. That the coast had been fairly well known at least two centuries before is evident from the records we have of the voyages of the early navigators. With the extension of settlements above the bay of San Francisco came the project for a commercial metropolis on the upper coast, probably at Trinidad, as that was the only harbor on the charts then in existence. In March, 1848, a meeting was held in San Francisco to make arrangements for the exploration of that bay. The all-absorbing gold excitement intervened for a time, but when Eeading penetrated to the head waters of Trinity river and found gold in its sands, this induced several other prospectors to cross the mountains into this heretofore unprospected region. They were so successful that in a short time it was suggested that an entry port be established through which passengers and supplies could reach this region by a nearer and easier sea route.
Reading discovered and named Trinity river, thinking at the time that it emptied into Trinidad bay. The next year an effort was made to find the mouth of the river. The expedition was formed in two divisions. One was to sail up the coast, and the other was to leave the Trinity headquarters and march westward. The coasting party returned without any news, but the land division which started on November 5, 1849, from Rich Bar, crossed the South fork at its junction with the main Trinity, and by Indian advice struck westward over the ridge, reaching the coast after much trouble at Little river, whence, on December 7th, tbey gained Trinidad Head, called by them Cheggs' Point, in honor of their leader. Turning southward they named Mad river in commemoration of Cheggs' temper, and coming upon Humboldt bay on December 20, 184:9, they called it Trinity. This was not the first discovery of the bay, however, for a Eussian chart of 1848, based on information by the Russian-American Company, points it out as entered by a United States fur trading vessel in 1796. The party camped on the site of Areata, and celebrated Christmas on elk meat, after which Elk river was named. They then separated. Cheggs, with three others, after vainly trying to follow the coast, finally drifted into the Sacramento valley, where he died from exposure and starvation. The other party following Elk river, and then turning southeast, reached Sonoma February 17, 1850 ; "Woods, their leader, having been mutilated by bears while en route. When the few survivors reached civilization once more they told of their discoveries, and immediately ships were fitted out and large parties sailed for the northern bay. Many of them arrived in safety, and these immediately proceeded inland, where they met several of the miners from Trinity, who were searching for the Cheggs party. It was by members of this expedition that the city of Klamath was founded.
Shortly after the town of Trinidad was started, and it was soon the most prominent place in these regions. It grew so rapidly that in 1850 it was made the county seat of Trinity county; which was created in that year and embraced all this newly explored region west of the coast range. It received further impulse from the Gold Bluff excitement during the winter of 1850-51, which drew a crowd of adventurers in search of ready washed gold from the ocean bluffs. Meanwhile diggers had pushed their way along the Trinity, and northward to the Klamath river. The region around Humboldt bay shared largely in the traffic with the Trinity mines, and revealed such promising agricultural and timber resources that in 1853 Humboldt county was formed out of the western half of Trinity, which was subsequentl}' shorn to its present dimensions by the erection of other counties.
The three classes of mining - placer, hydraulic and quartz - are carried on extensively in Trinity county. Since 1880 the placer mines have generally passed into the hands of men of means, and improved machinery has been added, and the output has been largely increased. The Klamath river, into which the Trinity empties, is a torrential stream, and hydraulic mining is carried on extensively. There are several fine properties about Trinity Center, and at Junction Gity there are several mines which have been large producers for years. The Haas, being one of the smallest, produced $35,000 in 1892. The Tnnity Gold Minmg Company owns 400 acres, every panful of which shows gold. It has produced some $28,000 in the same time. There are over three hundred hydraulic mines in the county.
Three years ago quartz mines were discovered on Canyon creek, and several of them are producing well, those west of them are doing development work The quartz mines at Deadwood have been the heaviest producers of any mines in the State. Those belonging to the Brown Bear Company produce from $35,000 to $75,000 monthly. A large amount of development work is being done in various parts of the county. A Colorado company has had 120 men employed digging a ditch to convey water twelve miles to the old Hubbard placer claims, which have been good producers.
At Cinnabar, in the northeastern part of the county, a large force has been employed, erecting furnaces, building houses, and preparing for energetic work in the summer of 1893, and it is expected that a large amount of quicksilver will be sent to market.
The mining interests being prosperous all other enterprises in the county are buoyant, and the prospects of Trinity county are gilt edged.
SHASTA COUNTY was formed in 1850, and the first Legislature which met at San Jose allotted nearly all of northern California to that county. The county seat was at Bedding's ranch on the Sacramento river, near the mouth of Clear creek. It did not remain long there, however. The town of Shasta sprang into prominence because of the extensive and rich diggings found in that vicinity, and it rapidly became one of the most important towns in the northern part of the State. The county seat was at once removed thither, and was maintained there until quite recently, when the shifting of population and trade centers caused by railroad construction compelled the return of the local seat of government to Redding. The town of Shasta was almost totally destroyed by fire in December, 1852, and again severely suffered from the same cause in June, 1853, and at various times subsequently.
The territory known at present as the county of Shasta was first visited by the trappers from British Columbia in the early part of the century. These men remained in the neighborhood but a short while, however, as they were looking for game and an easy route to the central and southern part of the State.
It was in 1843 that Major P. B. Eeading, General Bidwell, of Chico, and a number of others, penetrated into the upper portions of the Sacramento valley, and decided to make their homes there. They were charmed with the beautiful scenery, the fertility of the soil and the abundance of water. They obtained large grants of land in the valle}'. Major Eeading selecting an immense tract on the bank of the river. Subsequent experience has amply demonstrated the wisdom of the choice made by him.
A ' short time after the organization of the State Government the increase of the population of this region, caused by the stories brought down from the mines, became so great that a portion of Shasta was cut off and oi'ganized into an independent county, called Siskiyou. Within the territory allotted to the new county was Mount Shasta ; so that peak is not, as very many people suppose, located in the county of the same name. About the same time Tehama county was formed from a portion of Shasta and in due time the rush to the mines and theconstant settling and forming of mining camps in places heretofore deserted was so great that the counties of Lassen and Modoc were also created. Among tiie other flourishing towns of Shasta county may be mentioned Anderson, Cottonwood, and Millville, In the northwestern part of the county there are several valleys which support settlements of considerable size, and which, though somewhat isolated, are prominent factors in the development of Shasta. Fall River Mills, Burgettville, Pitville, Hot Creek and Burney Valley are the most important settlements of this region.
As already remarked, Shasta county is one of the oldest mining counties in the State, and millions of dollars have been washed from her gulches and hills, but it must not be supposed that because the days of placer mining have departed the search for gold has been abandoned. On the contrary, it is the opinion of many that only a small beginning has yet been made in the development of the mineral resources of this region, and many weighty facts are cited in support of this belief
Shasta is noted for her superb vineyards and fine orchards, and the acreage devoted to these is greatly increased. And the mines, also, show great activity. More miners find employment than ever before, and more capital is invested. The Sierra Butte Mining Company paid $150,000 for its property on Square Creek, and it has been a dividend paying mine from the start. The Gladstone Company divides about $15,000 monthly among its stockholders. There are a great many small properties which are paying well, and every interest in the county is prosperous.
LASSEN COUNTY had an interesting history, pending its organization. It is very probable that bands of trappers were in Honey Lake valley, Lassen county, very early, but the fact is not proved. It is not doubted that Peter Lassen and Paul Kicheson were there in 1848, when engaged in finding a route from Fort Hall to the upper Sacramento valley by which the Sink of the Humboldt could be avoided. The route they took, and which they called " Lassen's road," was followed by emigrants on their way to the mines for a few years, but was finally abandoned, owing to its great length and numerous dangers. In 1857 a very short and excellent route was discovered by a party led by a man named JSToble. They discovered a heretofore unknown mountain pass, which they named " JSToble's pass," and so it has been known ever since. Had Lassen discovered this route the county might have been settled earlier, as the emigrants would have taken it instead of following the Truckee and Carson trails. In the latter part of 1853 Isaac N. Eoop, postmaster at Shasta, came over with a few friends and staked off a tract of land one mile square at the head of Honey Lake valley. In the summer of 1851 Eoop erected a frame. building on his claim which he used as a storeroom for supplies which he sold to emigrants who passed through the valley that year in great numbers.
In 1855 Peter Lassen and a companion named kenebeck again entered the county on a prospecting tour, and were so gratified at the results that Lassen at once crossed the mountains to procure men to work the place systematically. In October, 1855, Lassen returned with several men, food and mining supplies, and a large band of cows, oxen and horses. A log cabin was immediately erected. It was sixty feet long and sixteen feet wide. They then dug a ditch about two miles long from the little stream now known as Lassen's creek to the camp.
All the while numerous settlers had been staking and working claims, and in April, 1856, an attempt was made at forming some kind of government. On the evening of the 26th of that month a mass meeting was held and Peter Lassen was elected president. It was moved and adopted that as Honey Lake valleywas not within the limits of California the same was declared a new territory. It was further stipulated that each male settler over twenty-one years of age should have a right to take up a claim of 640 acres The dimensions of the county as planned by these men, and to which the name of Nataqua was given, covered about 50,000 square miles. The settlement grew so rapidly that in 1857 the authorities of Plumas county began to take judicial notes of it, and, believing it to be within their jurisdiction, asserted this belief by creating it into a separate township under the name of Honey Lake township. The settlers were indignant and held several mass meetings, but finally, after attempts at self-government, they decided to obey the authorities of Plumas county. When the government surveys were made it was proved beyond a doubt that Honey Lake valley was within the boundary line of California and in Plumas county.
In 1864, after a full consideration of the subject, it was decided to organize a new eounty out of the extreme northeastern portion of Plumas county and eastern part of Shasta counties. To this was given the name of Lassen in honor of old Peter Lassen, who was undoubtedly the first white settler.
TEHAMA COUNTY was regularly organized in 1856, and ｒed Bluff was selected as the county seat in 1857, and there it has remained since. No reason has been given for the selection of that name. The first settlers in what is now Tehama county were N. C. Chard, A. G. Toomes and E. H. Thomes, who went there in 184i, settling near Alder creek, and appropriating five leagues apiece of the best land they could find. Houses of adobe were constructed, and large numbers of Indians employed, a beef paying the wages of 100 Indians for a week. Peter Lassen also took up his residence in the territory in 18i4. In the three following years a great number of pioneer settlers were attracted to the section, and Tehama City and Danville became thriving rivals, and Red Bluff was started in 1849 by John Meyers, who built the first house there.
Tehama county is centrally located at the head of the Sacramento valley in northern California, and almost surrounded by high mountains. The precious metals in paying quantities have never been found within its borders, but the dry atmosphere and fertile soil specially adapt it to the production of the finest grapes and the choicest fruits, and many thousands of acres have been planted to these. In 1892 large quantities of fruit, green and dried, were sold in Portland, St. Louis, Chicago and New York, realizing fine prices. The prune and grape yield was extra good. A cannery was established at a cost of $25,000, and 10,000 cases of fruit were packed and sold, the profits more than paying for the plant.
The school system of Tehama county is splendid. It was inaugurated in 1853, the first teacher being a young lady. The high standard established by her has been sustained. The community is a quiet one, devoted to farming and fruit growing, and it has escaped the exciting scenes which enlivened mining camps. Tehama is a fine locality for those seeking quiet and prosperous homes.
PLUMAS COUNTY derived its name from its principal river, Rio de los Plumas, or Feather river, which was so called in 1820 by Captain Luis A. Arguello, who headed a Spanish exploring expedition, because of the abundance of wild fowl feathers found floating on the bosom of the stream.
As early as 1843, Peter Lassen and a Eussian comrade named Isidore Meyerwitz, were there in search of a better route from the northern part of California to the Sacramento valley. It was decided to branch cfC from the old Oregon trail, and pass to the south down the stream to Lassen's peak, and thence by the base of a lofty mountain to Mountain Meadows, and west to Big Meadows and the headwaters of Huer creek, and down that stream to Lassen's ranch, where the emigrant parties generally disbanded. This road retained its popularity for only a year or two, when it was abandoned for a better route.
Of all the emigrants heading for the gold fields, the objective point was Sacramento, and none considered the journey ended until the Sacramento valley was reached. None thought of making a stop to prospect for gold, and very many were inclined to feel weary when they found it necessary to retrace the toilsome way they had passed a month previously.
Tery few halted in Plumas county, and yet one of the emigrants was the cause of opening up the country in 1850. Among a party of these travelers in 1849 was a man named Stoddard who, with a companion, left their companies in the mountains to hunt game, it being their intention to join the others a few miles further on. They roamed among the mountains for a few hours and finally lost their way. Over hill and down dale they walked, but could find no trace of their friends. At last they came upon a small lake, from which they drank to refresh themselves. While standing on the shore they noticed several glittering particles along the water's edge. They picked several of them up and on examining them closely found them to be lumps of pure gold. Before they had time to collect a stock they were set upon by the Indians. Stoddard's companion was killed, but he managed to escape and made his way to the mines, where he told his story, which was given little credit until he showed the nuggets of gold he had found. A search party was formed and in the following spring they left the mines and went in search of the lake, which became known as Gold lake, and the effort to find it, the Gold lake movement. After wandering aimlessly about for a few weeks they became despondent and began to look with suspicion on Stoddard, who they began to think was crazy and the lake a myth. Certain it is that neither the lake nor any traces of it was found, and after a month the party returned home after endeavoring to kill Stoddard, who, suspecting their intention, made his escape.
The news of Stoddard's reputed find and the subsequent effort to again discover the lake attracted thousands from all parts of the State to the scene, and in a short time what was previously a wilderness became quite a settlement.
Before the Gold lake excitement occurred, the first Legislature of California had divided the State into counties, attaching to Butte county this entire region, which was then an unknown wilderness. The geography of the State was so imperfectly known and the population so fluctuating, that proper assignment was impossible. During the year 1852 a number of settlements were made on the fine agricultural land of the valleys. The fall before, the Court of Sessions of Butte county had divided this locality into townships and had appointed officers. But these were of small use as the miners preferred to settle their little quarrels among themselves and, though part of Butte, the Plumas section was little governed by it.
So large was the population in 1853 that the county conventions of both political parties were held in this region. Finally the people were tired of being ruled by officers elected by another section of the county, and in 1854 John B. McGee, a member of the Assembly and resident of the Plumas section, introduced a bill creating the county of Plumas. It passed the Assembly without any trouble and on the 17th of March the Senate took favorable action upon it. On the 18th of the month the signature of Governor John Bigler made it a law and Quincy was made the county seat, a position it has maintained until the present time. This place is equally dependent upon its mining interests and upon agriculture, being situated in the American valley. The location of the town is pleasant and desirable, and the climate is healthful. Quincy has a weekly newspaper, several general business stores, good schools, secret societies, and all other social machinery of a wellordered California business community.
La Porte is a mining town situated at an altitude of 4,500 feet upon the divide between the Feather and Yuba rivers. It is about thirty miles south of Quincy. Snow falls in winter, some time attaining a great depth, traveling being carried on by means of snowshoes.
Taylorville is the principal town in Indian Valley, one of the most prosperous agricultural regions in the county. Greenville is credited with a population of several hundred. Meadow Yalley has a fine situation on a stream which is tributary to the North Feather river. The headwaters of two branches of the Feather, spreading out toward the northeast and northwest, have cut their way through gorges and canyons from 300 to 500 feet below the general level of the country. From the base of the Sierra a series of valleys stretch across the county for 100 miles in a southeastern direction, connected with each other by canyons, passes or low divides, such as Big Meadows, comprising some 30,000 acres ; Mountain Meadow of small area ; Butte Yalley, three miles long and one mile wide; Greenville, a small valley ; Indiana Yalley, eight miles long and four miles wide ; Genessee Yalley ; Clover Yalley, a long gorgelike depression, narrow at its lower end, bufc reaching a width of a mile or more at the upper end, and the lower end of Sierra Yalley, a depression of some twenty miles long and ten miles broad.
There are many rich mines in Plumas county, and active development work is being prosecuted. The want of the communities is a railroad, and the people are anxious therefor. Several surveys have been made, and the hope is well founded that the county may have quick communication with the outside world at an early day.
MENDOCINO COUNTY was organized in 1859, and got its title from a neighboring cape, so christened in the sixteenth century by a Spanish navigator in honor of Antonio de Mendoza, the Viceroy of Mexico and patron of the voyager. In May, 1863, the settlement of the county received an impetus by the dicovery of gold in several localities both in placer mines and quartz ledges, but it was not abundant, assaying low, and was not worked to any great extent. Coal, copper, silver and petroleum were discovered about the same time, and were worked advantageously. Eich specimens of copper were found at Sanel and Point Areva.
Mendocino county has prospered unusually, owing chiefly to great natural advantages, and of late years to the completion of the San Francisco and North Pacific railroad. Her soil is exceedingly fertile, and the redwood forests compete with the wealth-giving agricultural enterprises. Along the coast are several prosperous towns supported by the lumbering interest.
LAKE COUNTY is one of the smallest in the State. It was noted for its rich grazing grounds as early as 1840. In 1847 the first permanent settlers, Messrs. Stove and Kelsey, located near Clear Lake, and the next year were killed by the Indians. Fear of the Indians delayed settlement until 1853, when this abode of lovely scenery and healthy climate filled up rapidly. In 1861, Lake county was cut off from Napa, and a seat of government established at Lakeport, on the land of William Forbes. Uncle Sam, at the foot of Clear Lake, a mountain peak 4,000 feet high, is the most elevated point in the county. The county contains medicinal springs of high character which attract many visitors, and has some promising quicksilver deposits. The Sulphur Bank Company produces an average of 200 flasks monthly. Otherwise, the county depends upon agriculture and fruits, but these are sufficient to render its citizens independent and happy.
GLENN COUNTY is the latest subdivision in the State. It is probably the banner wheat growing section of the world, and claims that there is more first-class agricultural and less waste land in proportion to area in it than in any other county in the State. It also contains many profitable orchards and vineyards. The warm valley land composing the larger portion of the county is suitable for the production of citrus fruits, grapes, cherries, peaches, apricots, prunes and plums, while the foothills and mountains yield bountifully the choicest olives, pears and apples.
During 1892, a chrome mine was developed in the mountains, in the western part of the county, and yielded several car loads each month. No other mines have been opened. Willows is the county seat and contains every convenience of a young and prosperous city.
BUTTE COUNTY was born with a "gold spoon in her mouth." Her rivers, valleys and mountains have yielded millions of the yellow metal, and are continuing to add vast sums to the wealth of the world. Her great fields wave with wheat and grain, and the luscious orange flourishes abundantly in her warm soil. Butte as a county had its origin under the act of February 18, 1850, a few months after the first convention met that established American government in the State. It included the present territory, Plumas, a part of Tehama, Colusa, Sutter and most of Lassen counties. It was about eighty miles by 160 miles in extent, being as large as Vermont and Delaware together, and containing 8,330,000 acres.
The mining industries of Butte have been some of the most extensive in the world. John Bidwell discovered gold in the Feather river in March, 1848, two months after Marshall picked up the nugget atColoma. The operations, which began with the simplest form of pan-washing of the early miner, have culminated in gigantic hydraulic systems to wash whole mountains into sluice boxes, which have startled the entire world. Many large nuggets have been found in the various mines of Butte. In 1853 an old forty-niner found a chunk of gold as big as a beef's heart. He sold it for $1,500. In 1859 a nugget weighing fifty-four pounds was taken froma hydraulic mine near Dogtown. It was called the " Dogtown nugget," and its value was $10,690. A number of pure diamonds were found in the early sixties at a place known as Cherokee flat. The two leading mining districts are Bangor and Forbestown. In the former cement gravel mines, abandoned for twenty-five years because the owners did not understand the method of extracting the gold in a profitable manner, were reopened in 1892, and two hundred men were employed, while fully $30,000 was expended in opening the mines, building mills, arrastras and other mining works. Large sums have been expended on the Gold Bank mine, owned by W. "W. Stow, and on the Shapespeare mine, owned by Alvinza Hay ward. These are to introduce the improved methods which, when they become general, will make the yield of precious metals in California as great as it ever was. In the high regions about Gravel Kange, and what is known as the Golden Summit district, extensive and costly improvements were made, and some $80,000 has been expended in mills and in opening and developing quartz or gravel mines. These mines promise to be very rich. Near Oroville during the past summer, the Golden Feather mine turned out a large sum in gold, but the amount cannot be learned. The Banner quartz mine near Morris ravines is being extensively developed by Major McLaughlin and a New York company.
Oroville is the county seat of BuLte. The county is well supphed with transportation facilities. The first stage, running from Marysville to Shasta, began operations in 1851. JSTow railroads or stages penetrate to every portion of the county.
YUBA COUNTY ranks among the first whose territory gave the world the exciting stories
of gold discoveries and all of the interesting incidents attendant thereon. Traversed as it is by the famous Yuba and Feather rivers, both of which were supplied with an endless succession of "bars" rich in the precious yellow metal, Yuba has poured millions into the capacious lap of her country.
Marysville, which quickly sprang from a riverside rancho to a flourishing busy city, has contributed in the past some of the most thrilling incidents of California pioneer life. About the time that various settlers were acquiring Mexican land grants all over the valley of the Sacramento. Theodore Cordua obtained of Captain Sutter in 1842 a lease for nineteen years of the tract of land where Marysville now stands. Cordua erected a substantial adobe house, which was called " New Mecklenburg," but the name was soon supplanted by just plain Cordua's Ranch. The house stood near the trail from the upp er to the lower portions of the Sacramento valley, thereby becoming a way station for considerable travel. Cordua established a trading post at his place, and did considerable trafficking in various commodities. By 1847 he had thousands of cattle and hundreds of horses at his rancho. There were numerous Indians in the valley at that time. These Indians were about like the balance who overran California, being known under the generic term of " diggers." Their habits of dress and eating were on a par with their kind all over the State. Many other settlers joined Cordua before the gold discoveries. In October of 1846 a large number of emigrants arrived, who spread all over the region now covered by Yuba and Sutter counties. During the spring of 1847 the survivors of the Donner party arrived at Yuba, and some remained in that territory.
Yuba and Sutter counties have much early history that is common to both. Neither amounted to much until gold was discovered in the rivers. Jonas Spect and a party under Michael Nye discovered gold on the Yuba about the same time, which was in May, or June, 1848. The year 1849 did very little to alter the conditions or prospects of Tuba and Marysville. An instance in that year worthy of note was the residence of a man named John S. Moore, who successfully counterfeited quantities of Missouri bank bills. He industriously exchanged this paper for the miners' dust. They were very glad to be accommodated, as the difference in weight was very appreciable. The difference in value was also very appreciable, as they discovered when on their way home, rich with the spurious bills, they attempted to cash them. Moore escaped to South America and was never brought back.
In 1850 the growth of Marysville, formerly known as Nye's ranch, was very rapid. By that time the mines all about and on the Tuba river were paying tremendously. In January, 1850, there were about 300 people in Marysville and stores and residences sprang up like magic. A number of steamers from Sacramento soon began to arrive, bringing provisions and supplies, which had to be stacked upon the plaza. The old Cordua place, then known as Nye's ranch, was divided into town lots, the sale of which began immediately. Stephen J. Field, then a young attorney from New Tork, arrived about this time and began to do lots of work in making documents for land transactions. January 18th, when Field had been three days in town, an election was held almost " on the spur of the moment, " and Field was elected first alcalde. He had an opponent who had been in town a week, and his priority almost defeated the attorney. There was 231 votes cast. That same night festivities were indulged in, with congratulations of the successful candidates, and the town after such discussions was christened Marysville, in honor of the only woman there, Mrs. Mary Covilland, whose husband had owned nearly the whole townsite, purchased from Cordua.
The county of Yuba was one of the originals created by the first legislature, on February 8, 1850. The derivation of the name is disputed, some crediting the origin to the Indians, others to a Spanish word, "Uva." At the time when Yuba was finally partitioned off the town of Marysville could hardly hold its population. There were about 500 regular residents and at least 1,000 transients. Dry goods boxes for shelter were sold for $2 and $3 each.
From the time of the discovery of gold in the Feather and Yuba rivers, the mining industry increased steadily for years. Then exhaustion of gold deposits became apparent. It has seen the rise and fall of great hydraulic enterprises, and hopes to see the powerful monitors again washing mountains into sand and gravel, and compelling them to deliver up the stored gold. Nevertheless it is highly prosperous as it is. Orchards and vineyards are furnishing train loads of green fruit for the Eastern markets, and the drying houses and canneries are preparing other train loads. It is questionable whether the fertile valleys will not create more and saier prosperity than did gold in its palmy days.
The Southern Pacific Company bought the Northern California railroad, running between Marysville and Oroville, and immediately extended it on through Sutter county by what is known as the Knight's Landing road. It is built in the thorough manner usual to that company, and lessens the traveling distance between Marysville and San Francisco by about thirty miles. Yuba county, as originally formed when California was cut'into but twenty-seven subdivisions, extended from the Sacramento river to the eastern boundary of the State, including its present limits and Sierra, Nevada and a portion of Placer counties.
SIERRA COUNTY was formed from a portion of Yuba, with Downieville as county seat. The first explorers of this region are not all known. Along the canyon of the North Yuba men were mining as early as the summer of 1849. Phil. A. Haven went up the North Yuba early in September, 1849, and found notices of seven different claims posted on Big Erich bar. He located on Little Eich bar, and was joined by Francis Anderson, who on the 14th of September, 1849, found the first gold discovered in the neighborhood of Sierra's capital town, Downieville. The news soon spread and by November there were several settlements made, and in the immediate neighborhood of the North Yuba there were many populous camps. The discovery in this region of gold by Mr. Anderson was quite accidental. He went up to the forks and just above where the Jersey bridge at Downieville now stands made his find. It was not a rich strike, about $4, but it encouraged him and he went a little further up the stream, where he struck an exceedingly rich gravel deposit. He was almost afraid to go on with his work alone, as the traces of Indians were everywhere about, and he knew not whether they were hostiles or otherwise. He worked for an hour or so, standing in the water, taking out from $10 to $20 to a pan, when he heard loud noises on the hillside, and looking around saw a band of men dressed in various bright colors descending toward him. They were whooping and yelling as they clambered down the steep descent, and Anderson's first impression was that they were Indians thirsting for his gore. Grasping his knife, he decided to sell his life dearly, but was soon pleased to find there was no cause for fear, as they proved to be the Jim Kane party. They paid no attention to Anderson, but rushing into the water proceeded with their work of washing gravel with their pans. They were very fortunate in their selection of their place of work, for they cleaned up that day $300' to the pan. Anderson hastened back to Mr. Haven in the evening, and told him of the fabulous sums which he might carry off with the aid of a rocker. A small party with a rocker started out next day, and although they fell short of their expectations they did_exceedingly well. On the morning of the fifteenth, Jim Kane's party netted $2,800. From the bar formed by the forks of the Tuba at this point, there were taken several million dollars, and from that day to this. Sierra county has been noted for its rich mines.
During the year 1892 the mining developments of this section have been numerous and varied, many of which are bright with promise of golden dividends. San Francisco, New York and English capitalists have invested thousands of dollars in some of the most valuable properties, and are energetically working to place them on a paying basis. Judging by the past years of gold yield of millions of dollars extracted from Sierra's lava-capped mountains, handsomer interest on his principal than is obtainable elsewhere will reward the venturesome prospector. The home people, believing that none should Ibe assisted who do not help themselves, risk all their available funds in prospecting for new mines to replace those which may soon be worked out) and frequently with most gratifying results.
The Young American, William Tell, Sierra Buttes, Chips, Clevreland, Butte Saddle, Biglow, Independence, Phoenix and other quartz mines have been operated with varying success, and there have been cleanups of many thousands of dollars during the year 1892 in and around Sierra City. The Gold Bluff ledge, near Downieville, recently purchased by New York capitalists, bids fair to become a profitable enterprise. The Oxford, Oro and other as promising locations, will undoubtedly be developed when capital affords the " open sesame " to their secreted treasures.
A few miles from Forest City are the Ruby and Bald mountain Extension drift mines, where quite a number of miners are employed The stockholders of these claims have had dividends of thousands of dollars during the past year, with a showing for many more. Ancient river beds,hundreds of feet below the surface of the mountains, have been reached by long tunnels, that of the Extension being already over a mile and a quarter underground, with a probable auriferous channel of miles northeast up the pliocene lead. At Alleghany the Maple Grove Company, composed of Forest City Downieville and San Francisco business men, have with a hard bedrock tunnel of about 350 feet recently tapped what is thought to be in the lower part or outlet of the Euby channel, and the encouraging prospect obtained from a small dump full of gravel has justified the putting on of several men to thoroughly develop the lead, and a large part of which comes down through the Extension and South Fork locations. Many rich ledges are being successf all}worked near this mining camp. In northern Sierra tlie Gibsonville and La Porte ridge channel is being profitably developed through the Thistle shaft, to which a mile or more of tunnel may in time be run from Wallis creek for an economical working of the mine. Other drift mines have yielded well, especially the Happy Hollow and Pioneer.
Sierra county is exceedingly mountainous, and only Sierra valley, situated in the eastern portion of the county, is adapted to extensive farming. It is thirty miles long, and from ten to fifteen miles wide. Artesian wells have been sunk at small expense, and many of the farms are irrigated with the water thus supplied. The greater portion of the population being engaged in mining, the ranchers obtain good prices for everything they produce, and dispose of it all at Sierra City and Downieville.
COLUSA COUNTY was created in 1850; but before a single house had been erected in Colusa City it had been named and located. It was built on the ruins of the Indian Capital, called Coru, inhabited by Colus Indians, of whom Sioc was the head chief.
The first real settler in Colusa county was a man named Bryant. He raised corn on his place in 1846. When gold was discovered two years later, there were not a dozen whites in the county. The gold excitement populated the rivers, creeks and hills at a lively pace in 1849 and 1850. Towns or camps began to be staked out, and civilized houses were erected. By 1852 a iiotel was built at Colusa. The Sacramento river afforded easy transportation from Sacramento city, and freight and commodities came that way.
The history of the earliest white settlement of Colusa is almost identical with that of Butte. The reason is that much of the common territory belonged to the former. John Bid well was one of the pioneers in that section, passing through in 1843. Peter Lassen acquired one of the very first land grants, although his land was not entirely within Colusa. His settlement was made in 1844. Up to this year the Colusa Indians had never seen a white man. These Colusa Indians had a tradition that a flood once ingulfed California. Only an eagle and a mud turtle remained alive, the former flying above the water and the latter floating upon a bunch of tules. They worked together. The eagle tied a string to the turtle, which dove down and brought up mud, placing it upon the floating tules, the eagle helping to pull him up with the load. In this way they built the Butte mountains, which protruded above the water. On this land some elders grew, from which these industrious creatures made a male and female Indian, who in turn populated California.
The minerals of Colusa are of the same character as those of Bulte. Quantities of gold were discovered there when the early prospectors had spread out over the whole of the valley of the upper Sacramento. Silver abounds in many places and copper almost in the native form exists in large deposits. Quicksilver is quite plentiful near the line that divides Colusa from Lake county.
The sandstone quarry near Sites is attracting general attention. It is on the Colusa & Lake railroad, about ten miles from its junction with the Northern railway. The stone is on the surface and is easily quarried, only requiring to be blasted from the hillsides. In color it is a gray blue. The specific gravity is greater than granite. Considerable quantities have been removed, the Oakland Theater having been built of it, and a large amount having been used in the construction of Trinity Church in San Francisco during the year 1892. The supply is simply inexhaustible, inasmuch as it consists of mountains of solid sandstone 400 feet high, and eight miles long. It is the best quarry in the State and easy of access.
A company was incorporated last year to make salt at their works north of Sites. It is said to be superior to Liverpool salt, and the scheme is one which points to a grand success.
SUTTE COUNTY was named in honor of Captain John A. Sutter, who at one time claimed to own the territory which composes it, and a considerable portion of Sacramento and Placer and the valley portion of Yuba, and a little of Colusa as well. The Mexican authorities never acknowledged his title to a grant of any such dimensions. Indeed, this was about five times greater than any one was permitted to claim. By getting friends to locate on the more desirable parts, he and they held possession of a good deal more than he was ever entitled to. Captain Sutter constructed a building so strong in appearance that it was always spoken of as "Sutter's Fort." He began to raise wheat on a large scale, using Mexicans, Indians and emigrants as husbandmen, and no doubt had the first flour mill in operation which was known in California. Compared with some of the great flour manufactories now operated in California, it could only be called a " flour-mill " by curtesy ; but it was far more effective than the Mexican and Indian way of grinding the wheat between two loose stones worked by hand.
California pioneers ever held a warm place in their hearts for Captain Sutter. To them an earnest welcome was given, which could not fail to be appreciated by men and women who had passed through such trying scenes as no description can render real in any sense. Those who shared his hospitality after the long journey across the plains, and who are still in the land of the living, have only good vrords for, and pleasant memories of Captain Sutter, and all Americans regret the pecuniary misfortunes which overtook him towards the close of his life.
Situated as it was, with mining fields on every side, Sutter county had a lively interest in the success of mines, but contained no very rich deposits of gold within, its borders. Its citizens were devoted to raising bread and meat for those who delved for gold. From wheat growing and cattle raising the change to the more profitable business of fruit growing was easy, and more especially as Sutter county was noted for its small thoroughly cultivated ranches. In the last few years its ranches have been among the heaviest shippers of green, dried and canned fruits of any section in the State, and the fruits have obtained high favor in the East. Peaches take the lead of all fruits grown in the county. After peaches come apricots, pears, plums and small fruits. Citrus fruits do finely, and the cultivation of these is multiplying rapidly every year.
The most flourishing towns in the county are in the order named : Yuba City, Live Oak, Meridan, Nicolaus. Pleasant Grove and Sutter City, the latter place being the most youthful. The first named is the county seat, and has doubled in population since 1S80, gaining the most of this in the past five years.
NEVADA COUNTY is on the eastern boundary of the State. The name means "snowy." The central part of the county contains rich gold workings, including quartz, hydraulic and placer mines. The western part is especially adapted to horticulture and agriculture, and contains about 250,000 acres.
The first settlement in the county was made by John Rose at Rose Bar, near Smartsville, in 1849. A trading post was established in the same year on Bear river, near the mouth of Greenhorn creek, and Rough and Ready was settled by the Rough and Ready company about the same time. Topographically the county is very uneven throughout, the great snowy mountains covering the eastern part and the foothills the western part. These hills and mountains have yielded millions of dollars to the pick and pan of the miner.
A short distance above Hevada City is the famous hydrauling mining region, which formerly added millions annually to the gold product of the county. The stopping of hydraulic mining by the courts was the greatest calamity that ever befell the county, reducing its taxable property over $3,000,000, and lessening its inhabitants at least 5,000 souls. Grass valley is the largest town in the county, and has a population of about 7,000. The principal industry is quartz mining. Here are located the pioneer quartz mines and mills of the State.
The county has connection with the outside world by means of the ITevada County Narrow-Gauge railroad, finished in 1876, extending from Nevada city through Grass valley to Colfax, where it connects with the Central Pacific. Truokee, in the eastern part of the county, is noted for its product of lumber, wood and ice. The celebrated " Bartlett pear belt " extends through a portion of the county, and considerable attention has been paid to the raising of this fruit. Nevada county offers to the public a fine climate, excellent agricultural and horticultural land, and the best field for mining investments in the world.
This county is still the banner gold mining section of the Golden State. Within the year just passed there have been no startling discoveries nor remarkably rich "strikes," and, in fact, no extreme activity; but the old mines have continued to yield their full measure of gold, and during the year 1892 there have been many new mines opened up, some of which are already yielding in paying quantities, and most of which are promising.
Nevada county is always sure to retain prestige as the peerless mining producer of California. In 1893 a great enterprise was inaugurated that is calculated on its successful completion to almost revolutionize quartz mining in Nevada county. A powerful company has been organized for .the purpose of placing at a central location a large electric plant which will furnish power for all the mines within the county. Behind this company are prominent capitalists of San Francisco and San Jose. Work on the plant has already been commenced, and at a point on the South Yuba river an immense dam has been built for the development of water-power for running the dynamos. With the opening of spring the work will be resumed, and the plant is expected to be in operation during the year 1893.
A similar enterprise which will follow this is the building of an electric railroad to connect Grass valley and Nevada City with many of the most important mines. Applications have already been made to the supervisors of the county for rights of way extending from the east to the west county lines. The great advantage of these two enterprises to the county can hardly be estimated. The lack of adequate power and transportation facilities for the mines has heretofore been one of the greatest drawbacks to the proper development of the county and its wonderful mineral resources.
One of the surest indications of coming prosperity in Nevada county during the year has been the interest taken and the progress made in horticultural and agricultural developments. Those who have heretofore devoted all their capital and energy to the development of the mines have come to realize that there are other possibilities for this region. The shipments of green fruits, mostly pears and peaches, from Nevada county during 1892, far exceeded those of any previous year in its history. More land was cleared and prepared for tree planting and grain raising than in any previous five years.
PLACER COUNTY formed a part of Sutter. April 25, 1851, the original dividing act was amended, and the additional counties of Placer and Nevada created. Three or four attempts have been made since to create new counties by slicing off some of Placer and parts of adjoining counties. They have failed, and Placer remains as originally formed, with Auburn as county seat.
Gold was discovered at the " Dry Diggings," in Auburn ravine, Placer county, by Claude Chaua, May 16,
1848, just four months minus three days after its discovery by Marshall at Coloma. Chaua, who was intimate with Marshall, made this discovery while leading a party to Coloma to engage in gold digging there. The party were wholly inexperienced, and did not succeed well, and soon after abandoned the field, and proceeded to the Tuba river, where after a year's work they cleared up $25,000. When Chaua and his party left the ravine it was not long allowed to remain neglected. In the "Dry Diggings," near Auburn, during the month of August, 184:8, one man got $16,000 out of five car loads of dirt. In the same diggings a good many were collecting from $800 to $1,500 a day. The region soon acquired the name of " The North Fork Dry Diggings," and in the fall of
1849, when the settlement became more concentrated and stores were established, was given the name it now "bears - Auburn.
In the summer of 1848 the principal tributaries of the American river were explored by a company of Oregonians, and rich prospects obtained upon almost every bar, as far up the Middle Fork as they proceeded. At this time the bars were generally explored as high up the Middle Fork as Rector's Bar, which proving as rich as any diggings the explorers expected to find, and it being difficult to go further up the river with horses, they ceased to travel and worked the mines until winter set in, when they returned to the settlements in the valley or to their homes in Oregon.
Early in 1849, the system of washing the auriferous dirt with the common rocker was introduced upon the middle fork of the American river, and was regarded as a great improvement to gold mining. During this year miners flocked to the bars in great numbers from " the Old Dry Diggings " and Coloma and elsewhere, and during the summer settlements were formed in many parts of Placer county, including Auburn and Ophir in the foot-hills and many less important camps on the American river.
In the pioneer days Placer was noted for its agricultural attainments. Fruits, grain and vegetables were raised in great abundance, while of late years the horticultural industry has taken precedence of all others, and the fine fruits of the Placer foot-hill orchards and vineyards are known all over the West.
The principal industries of Placer are tlie production of gold, fruit and the raising of wheat, cattle, sheep and wool. Over 130,000 acres are annually devoted to wheat, barley and hay. Gold beneath ground and gold above ground are the characteristics of Placer. It is a strange though oft contradicted fact, that there in the thermal belt, situated 500 miles north of the famed orange groves of San Bernardino and Los Angeles, and within fifty miles of the snow on the summit of the Sierra, the oranges ripen nearly four weeks in advance of those in Southern California. Every variety of climate characteristic of the temperate zone may be found in Placer. At the summit in eastern Placer are found many feet of snow, while in the thermal belt on the sunny side of the Sierra may be found green fields, singing birds, a wealth of roses and golden citrus fruits.
Placer, in 1891, shipped over 19,000,000 pounds of delicious fruits. In 1892, over 24,000,000 pounds. The total shipments of New Castle this season were 14,070,265 pounds as against 11,952,291 to the correponding date of last season, or a gain of 2,084,794 pounds. Penryn comes in this year as a close second, while large shipments were made from Coif ax. Auburn and Loorais. During the month of September, 1892, a total of nineteen cars were shipped from various points in Placer in a single day.
Renewed activity is being manifested in tlie mining circles of Placer county. New capital is taking hold of many good mines that have lain idle, and their development is hkely to be prosecuted on a more systematic and business-like plan than in the past. Several of the best mines in the county are shut down on account of legislation. The Ophir district, four miles south of Auburn, is the most noted locality for quartz, and contains eighty or ninety claims. But few of them, however, are being worked at present. Notably among them is the Nina, Eica, Morning Star, The Jloore and the Golden Stag. Several good properties in other portions of ttie county are being worked with profit, viz: The Dores and Pioneer at Damascus, American Ear at Michican Bluff, Drummond Bar at lowa Hill, and Homestake near Forest Hill. Among the drift mines now being operated are the Morning Star of Iowa Hill, the Dardanelles, Mayflower and Gray Eagle of Forest Hill, Hidden Treasure of Sunny South, Breeze and Wheeler of Bath, and Mammoth Bar near Auburn. With one or two exceptions the entire mining districts on the divide are given over to general enterprises.
EL DORADO COUNTY was one of the twenty-seven into which California was first subdivided in 1850. To it belongs the honor of having been the scene of the great discovery which pushed every human enterprise ahead. It was where the Argonaut firstsaw California soil after making his journey across the plains, and to-day many an old Californian, now in the Eastern States, associates his idea of California with what he saw and knew of El Dorado in the early years, that being all of the State he ever saw. Her mines have from the first kept pace with the foremost in the State, and are still being worked perseveringly and with success. Quartz, gravel and cement claims are being operated successfully and cheaply by means of electricity as a motive power, reducing the cost of operating to a minimum, enabling the operator to work low-grade ores with a profit, and largely increasing the output.
Coloma was at first made the county seat of government. When the placers had been worked out, and the importance which these had given it subsided.
Placerville, originally "Hangtown," was selected as the county seat, and there it will remain. Although in the beginning most of the towns were founded and supported by the mines, yet many of the inhabitants made their living by farming. Money was flush, vegetables were a great luxury, and the soil was rich. Potatoes and other products wer3 sold for fabulous sums, and in a short time the farmers were the reigning element of the community. With the decline of mining, however, involving the death of so man}' camps, the vitality of the larger places rapidly declined, and by 1880 less than 11,000 remained of a population which in the early fifties numbered over 20,000. But farming, and notably horticulture, stepped into a channel of slow, though steady growth, and the fruits of El Dorado have won high reputation for their excellent quality, thus materially assisting in the upbuilding of the county.
The forests of sugar pine are very extensive and are being manufactured into lumber for home and foreign markets. Within the past year several companies have erected large mills in the timber belt, which gives impetus to business. Among them is the American River Land and Lumber Company, which owns 10,000 acres of timber land. This concern has built ten miles of railroad to carry logs to the American river, whence they float them to Folsom, where they will be manufactured, creating an industry which adds greatly to the prosperity of the county.
The only slate quarries being worked in the State are located within lour miles of Placerville, where an inexhaustible quantity exists, easily obtained and equal in quality to any in the world. The annual output is enormous, making an industry that will always be a source of profit to the county.
Orchardists are paying special attention to the improvement of their orchards, and in the selection of good shipping varieties to meet the demands of the markets. A large increase has been made in acreage during the year, and shipments have increased sixty per cent over last year. One hundred and thirtyfour carloads of 21,000 pounds each of green fruit were shipped frona Placerville alone this season. Wine grapes grown here are sought after by wine makers in the valleys, because the mountain fruit makes a better wine than that of the valley. The soil of El Dorado county is well adapted to the raising of grains, hay and vegetables, producing quality and quantity equal to any mountain county in the State. The increase in wheat is especially noticeable, caused by the erection of a flouring-mill in Placerville, making a home market for all that can be produced, and insuring good prices. The future of El Dorado county in agricultural products is assured.
Activity in manufacturing enterprises is specially marked. The most noticeable is a flouring mill, built in Placerville by the El Dorado Milling Company, equipped with a complete outfit of the most modern and improved machinery, with a capacity of sixty barrels of flour per day. Bleur & Co. have erected a manufactory for builders' materials, boxes, doors, blinds, etc. Two fruit houses have been added to meet the demands of shippers and keep up with the increasing, supply of fruits for shipment.
Railroad facilities have been greatly improved. The Sacramento and Placerville branch of the Southern Pacific Company has been extended to Placerville. It has assisted in developing business until it is not always convenient to obtain cars when wanted at some of the rapidly growing stations on the road.
SONOMA COUNTY, the locahty of the famous Bear Flag war, is another of the original counties. Once, indeed, the district called Sonoma included all of that country west of the Sacramento river and north nearly to the Oregon line. When county divisions were made it still occupied all that is at present Mendocino, and most of what is now Napa. In 1859 Sonoma was reduced to its present size. The name Sonoma is an Indian word, signifying " Yalley of the Moon." It originated with the Chocuyen Indians, but was suggested by Father Jose Altimira, who came there in 1824 to establish the first mission.
The first trip into what is now Sonoma was made by Captain Quiros when, on a voyage of discovery, he sailed up Petaluma creek in 1776, seeking its course. In January, 1811, Bodega bay was visited by a Eussian from Alaska named Alexander Koskoff. He liked the country and took possession of a strip of land probably in both Sonoma and Marin counties, whereon he settled in spite of Spanish protests. Koskoff staid on the land, and in five years had a settlement with twenty-five Eussians and eighty Kodiac (Alaskan) Indians. They erected a barricade for protection, and made hunting and trapping expeditions for considerable distances inland and north and south. They planted orchards and erected a church, raised grain, worked in leather, wood and iron, and had a good trade with Sitka.
In 1823 Father Jose Altimira and Don Francisco Castro, under military escort, commanded by Jose Sanchez, started to Sonoma's territory to establish a mission there. Their explorations were continued over a great area, and finally a site was selected, called New San Francisco. It was in August of 1823 that the construction of buildings was commenced. Three years later the Indians destroyed the mission and Father Altimira barely escaped with his life. Under Father Fortuni the mission was rebuilt, and was again in permanent shape in 1830. In 1832 the Indians were freed, and the lands divided up. Next year the smallpox scourge broke out, when it is said 60,000 Indians in the territory now included in Sonoma, Napa and Solano counties, perished miserably.
Settlers came to Sonoma very rapidly betv/een 1835 and 1840. The Indians continued hostilities, but in spite of their depredations the country began to thrive, and sheep and cattle raising and agriculture flourished. The military government of the State was now under General Vallejo. He was ordered to extend the settlements to the northwestward, and so made several grants of land to emigrants. These Anglo-Saxons were beginning to come in, were opposed by the Russians, who still held sway at Bodega bay and Fort Hoss. Difiiculties soon arose and the Anglo-Saxons were constantly getting the best of the situation. The Russians finally appealed to General Vallejo and Governor Alvarado, urging them to buy their partially improved possessions. This was declined, when they effected a sale to John A. Sutter in 1840, and then abandoned the homes that they had held for upward of thirty years. The bands of American settlers, who were soon to control the whole country, commenced to flock in more rapidly, and they soon began to establish more modern ideas. About 1841 a Captain Stephen Smith, of the bark George and Henry, saw the need of lumber and grist-mills in the new country. He embarked for the Atlantic, and after a couple of years returned with the necessary machinery. He landed forcibly at the old Russian possession, being opposed by Captain Sutter. There he got lumber and erected mills near the redwood forests. Finally the buildings were completed and the whole country was invited to come and see the start. Everything worked to perfection. Lumber was sawed and wheat was ground into flour. Bread was baked, cattle butchered and a splendid banquet was held. The pioneer mill was a success. Smith ran his machinery until 1850 and then sold out. Subsequently the mill was taken to Mendocino county.
Before the war was declared between the United States and Mexico, trouble had started a number of times between Mexicans and Americans in California, owing to attempts of the former to expel the latter from the territory. Americans had been imprisoned and proscribed, but they were arriving in great numbers, and their progress was resistless. Mexico and her subjects were becoming alarmed. A congress or junta was called, and serious discussions were had over a proposal to have France or England assume a protectorate over California to the exclusion of the Yankees. General Vallejo strenuously opposed any such movement, and withdrew from the junta. Governor Pio Pico was much in favor of ceding the country to a foreign power. Vallejo had at this time retired to his country home in Sonoma county, after having occupied the most prominent positions in the State. Fremont had come to California a little before these troubles. He had a small but intrepid following of soldiers. Dissension had arisen between Governor Pio Pico and General Jose Castro. The latter was a power in the community. He gathered horses, men and arms to proceed against both Fremont and Pio Pico, as both had defied his authority.
An uprising being feared Pico communicated with Castro, asking his assistance for the general strife against the Americans. Lieutenant Arci, under com mand of General Castro, left Sonoma with the horses to go to Santa Clara. He crossed the Sacramento river at Knight's Landing, and told Knight's wife,who was a Mexican woman, what he intended to do. Mrs. Knight told her husband. Knight immediately rode to Fremont's camp with the information. This was on June 9, 1846. A party of eleven men under Ezekiel Merritt started in pursuit of Lieutenant Arci at once. They were joined by others on their way, and received information of Arci's camp. They proceeded under cover of darkness to within a short distance of the lieutenant's quarters. In the early morning following theycaptured Arci and all of the animals. Arci and his men were given an animal apiece, and told to depart and say to General Castro that he could have the horses when he would come and take them. The party then rejoined Fremont, having ridden 150 miles in forty-eight hours.
It was now decided to be unsafe to do anything but proceed. They determined to capture Sonoma City and its garrison at once, before Lieutenant Arci could reach that place. They accordingly set out June 12 at 3 o'clock on the ride of 120 miles. The company received reinforcements, and numbered thirty-three men. June 14, at daylight, they surprised the garrison at Sonoma and captured everything. General Vallejo was made a prisoner along with other illustrious Mexicans. There were ten pieces of artillery at the garrison, and much ammunition and other arms. The victors, who then unfurled the famous Bear flag with a huge grizzly, a lone star and the words " California Republic " upon it, carried their prisoners off in triumph to Sacramento, and locked them up for sixty days. The prisoners were taken away on horses furnished by General Vallejo himself. The handful of patriots formulated a proclamation whereby they declared California to be a free republic. It is related that the guard who accompanied the prisoners all went to sleep at a camp on the way, and forgot to leave a sentinel. In the night a party of Mexican rancheros came into camp, woke the general, and told him that they could surprise the Americans, kill them all, and declare war, if he thought best, and would command them. He declined, saying that he would go with his captors, ihat such action could only entail the eventual ruin of their homes, and he thought that everything would soon be settled.
The victors at Sonoma found, after their excitement hud abated, a Mexican flag floating over the citadel. They hauled it down and after considerable discussion decided upon the " Bear flag." A piece of cotton cloth was obtained upon which a man named Todd painted the star with red paint. The bear and words "California Republic," or "Republic of California," were afterwards painted and the flag hoisted amid shouts and excited hurrahs. On July 9th following, the A.merican flag took the place of the bear flag. The officers of the fort found themselves short of powder, and, as they had determined upon California's independence, and were making preparations for a long fight, they sent two young men, named Cowie and Fowler to Santa Eosafor the ammunition. The young men were captured by Mexicans, and most foully tortured and murdered. Two of the murderers were afterwards killed.
General Castro made an appeal to all Mexicans to fight for the country against the Americans, and got together a force with which he started toward Sonoma. Some of these forces captured two men belonging to the fort at Sonoma, one being Todd, the bear flag artist. A Captain Ford and fourteen men pursued the Mexicans, surprised them at a ranch, killed nearly a dozen, and rescued the prisoners. Fremont and others, with a considerable force, now joined issue with the Sonoma garrison. Castro left forces near Sonoma's territor}', but himself escaped to San Francisco, from which place he commanded his small army. Several of his spies, sent to reconnoiter, were captured and shot. One bore a letter to Captain de la Torre, instructing him to kill every American, man, woman and child, found. De la Torre's forces soon after escaped to Yerba Buena (San Francisco). News reached Sonoma garrison on July 10, 1846, that Commodore Sloat had taken Monterey on July 7, and that wai' had been declared between the United States and Mexico. The bear flag was pulled down, and stars and stripes run up, and the bear flag war was ended.
Sonoma is another of the counties abounding in the great redwoods, and lumbering has formed one of her important industries. Her hills and valleys are exceedingly beautiful. The valleys, particularly, are among the finest in the State. The principal ones are the Sonoma, Petaluma, Santa Rosa and Russian river. This county has made the most material development of any coast county during the year 1892. Five j'ears before the cliief industry was grape-growing. The low prices of wine and grapes have gradually driven the grape-growers out of the business and their attention has been turned to the more lucrative business of prune and general fruit-growing. Hop-growing has also been going forward with gigantic strides during the past few years until Sonoma county has become the Mecca of California and eastern brewers. From a fruit standpoint the county was very prosperous in 1892, the revenue from this source exceeding that of the year before by more than $34,000.
The branch line of the San Francisco and North Pacific railroad terminates at Sebastopol, seven miles west of Santa Rosa, and it has given an impetus to business which nothing but a railroad can do so effectively. Further westward is the great dairying district of this county. Thousands of pounds of butter and cheese are shipped from this section to the eastern States. The sawmills in the dense redwood forests in the northwestern part of the county have cut more timber in 1892 than in the year previous by 2,000,000 feet, and Guerneville has shipped more freight, mostly dressed lumber, than any other town in the county. The quicksilver excitement of twenty years ago in the Pine-flat country is being revived in a modified form, and sliafts are being sunk with good success in the district supposed to have been worked out years ago. There is no doubt but there is paying ore there, and capitalists are organizing to get it out.
The recently discovered coal beds on Mark West creek, five miles northeast of Santa Rosa, are being developed by practical men. Some thirty or forty men are tunneling now, and a large force will be put on in the spring. These coal fields have been thoroughly tested, and the supply is inexhaustible. Either an electric line or branch of the Donahue system will be built to carry the coal to market.
This county now has three distinct lines of railroad, with communications on the svest and south ; still the lines are not adequate to drain the county of its multifarious products. A scheme that will surely carry is on foot to build an electric line from Santa Rosa to Tidewater, a few miles below Petaluma.
Santa Rosa is the county seat, and it is beautiful and prosperous almost beyond description. Its citizens are cultured, and Santa Rosa's reputation as an educational center is as broad as the State.
The city of Petaluma, situated at the head of Petaluma creek, has made more progress during 1892 than during the previous ten years. The Currier-Carlson Silk Company has planted itself permanently in a splendid brick factory that will give constant employment to a large number of persons. A boot and shoe factory is one of the late improvements, and a starch factory is now under construction. Deep-water communication has attracted the attention of factor}' men, and it is now a city of factories. The increase in population has been very heavy, business has been brisk, and there is hardly an idle man in its limits.
This is the great shipping point of Sonoma county. Silk culture is a new industry that has sprung up during the past year. Healdsburg, Cloverdale, Sonoma and Guerneville, showed a large increase in business over 1891, and the prospects for an even more prosperous year for 1893 are very bright. The prospect of inducing the Government to widen and straighten Petaluma creek, and dredge Bodega bay, is good. These improvements would be of incalculable benefit to Sonoma county.
NAPA COUISTTY was not one of the original twenty-seven subdivisions of the State. It was organized in April, 1857, and from territory which had been reclaimed from the Indians, ISTapa city being built on the site of a village formerly occupied by the Napa tribe of Indians.
George C. Yount was Kapa's first white settler. He estimated that there were 5,000 Indians in Napa vallev when he went there in 1831, but most of them succumbed to the smallpox epidemic which swept off so many thousands in 1833. Yount spent most of his time in hunting and trapping when he first came, as game was very plentiful. He built the first log cabin house erected in the State by an American. That was in 1836. The hut was eighteen feet square below, and had an upper story twenty-two feet square, in the usual block-house fashion. He left portholes in the walls, through which he frequently defended himself fi'om the Indians, who were very troublesome at that time. It was a number of years after Yount's time before any more permanent settlers came to Napa.
Those who did come, about 1839-40 and later, acquired land near Napa City's site. In 1841 a noted Kussian naturalist named Wosnessensky visited the country and left a copper plate on the summit of Mount St. Helena. Afterward the United States geological surveyors removed it to preserve it.
Napa never was a mining county and, with the exception of a few quicksilver deposits, there have been no valuable minerals found in her limits. Several mineral springs exist in the county, of which the Napa Soda Springs is the most prominent.
The grape, wine and brandy industries of Napa have brought that county prominently to the front in tiie last few years. It is generally conceded that Napa leads in winemaking which is now so important an industry to the State. Probably her sandy soil and warm hillsides contribute more than anything else to the success of her vineyards. Grain in Napa also does exceedingly well and many very large farmers devote much land to its culture. In the orchards all fruits thrive no less successfully than do the grapes. The wine cellars of the county, which seem to be almost as numerous as the ranches, are some of the very fincstin the United States. A great number of them are constructed of stone, and others are large, deep tunnels dug in the side o£ the hills. These latter, penetrating solid rock, are always clean, dry and cool.
One of the finest properties of the county is the Suscol ranch, founded long ago by General Vallejo. The fruits and nuts from that place have yielded immense profits. The Suscol was the scene of a very active and sanguinary battle between Indians and a gallant little band of soldiers under General Vallejo in 1835.
The general only lost two men killed, several being wounded. The troops killed over 200 of the Indians. The savages were still for war, but the arrival of reenforcements for the Spaniards quieted them.
The great and promising industry of the county is the growing of olives. Mountains and hills heretofore deemed of but little value, and that only for grazing purposes, are being planted to olives, and the hardy trees are doing so well that others are encouraged to follow the example of the pioneers in this industry. So firm a hold on the attention of the thrifty farmer has the industry attained that it promises to become a leading industry of the vicinity, and that ere long.
YOLO was made a county in 1850, and Fremont was designated as the county seat. The name is a corruption of "Yo-doy," meaning tule land. William Gordon settled in what is now Yolo county in 1842. In 1843 the Mexican government granted him a peice of land one league wide and two leagues long, and described as being along " Jesus Maria river," now Cache creek, deriving its name from the hunters' habit of cacheing furs along its banks. A number of other white settlers selected places near Gordon's ranch, and in 1845 wheat was harvested there, and considerable stock raised. Nathan Coombs was the father of the first child born there.
"When the gold excitement broke out, nearly all the male residents of Ycdo left for the mines. The next year they began to come back. Jonas Spect brought a schooner load of merchandise from Sacramento, and the town of Freniont was started. After a few months it was again deserted and but two tents occupied by white people and a few Indians in adobes, remained to mark the site. When the winter drove the miners down into the valley, Fremont had a population of 1,300.
Recent years have seen important works o: reclamation and improvement, with a general fostering of naturally abundant resources, until to-day Yolo is unsurpassed as a happy and prosperous farming community. A productive soil, a sufficient water supply, a climate favorable to vegetable life, fine transportation facilities and superior educational advantages are the resources which, combined, have placed Yolo in the list of the leading counties of California. In an annual rainfall of sixteen inches there is a guarantee against crop failures, and drouths are unknown.
In Capay valley, the Tancred and other colonies, which were disposed of to eastern farmers, are a picture of thrift and enterprise. Kesidences have been erected by the colonists, and the farms are in a splendid state of cultivation. The colonies established by the Capay Valley Land Company are also advancing rapidly.
SACRAMENTO COUNTY is one of the most historical in the whole State. It was the seat of business of the interior in pioneer days, and the center from which the miners started and to which they nearly always returned. Sacramento city is inseparably linked with the bustle and furor of the gold excitement, and the discovery that set the world afire was directly attributable to the settlement of that city. Sacramento's history is the story of Captain Sutter, whose enterprising spirit it was that directed its settlement in the midst of trials and dangers that were too much for his first supporters.
Sutter came to the United States from the Duchy of Baden, where he was born in 1814, landing at New York. He came "West almost at once and settled in Missouri. In 1838 he went with a party of hunters and trappers to Oregon. He wanted to reach California, but this was then a hard matter. First he went to the Hawaiian islands, and from there to Sitka. He sailed the vessel which took him to Sitka down to San Francisco bay, arriving in 1839. The Mexican ofificials notified him to get out of the country, and told him that Monterey was the port of entry. At Monterey Governor Alvarado signified an eager readiness to let Sutter settle on the Sacramento river, as the Indians were very hostile. Sutter returned to San Francisco and chartered a schooner to go up the river. No one could tell him where to find the Sacramento, and he was eight days hunting for its entrance to the bay. He and his party proceeded up into the Feather river, but the dangers of its channel compelled him to return to the Sacramento. At this juncture three of his white men left, and returned to Terba Buena (San Francisco). Others remained with him, as did a lot of Kanakas whom he had brought from Sitka.
Sutter immediately commenced the erection of a fort to protect himself and party from the Indians. He afterwards embarked in agricultural ventures with great success. In 1840 several white men who had come across the mountains joined Sutter, and his settlement soon received numerous other acquisitions. That year the Indians were unusually warlike, and a battle ensued in which the natives were routed.
In June, 1841, Sutter was declared a citizen of Mexico, and the land at his place, called " New Helvetia," was granted to him. It comprised eleven square leagues of territory. Every new arrival, foreign or otherwise, who came near joined Sutter's party, and New Helvetia grew in prosperity every day. When the war broke out with Mexico, Sutter, although a Mexican officer, extended every kindness and courtesy to the Americans and their forces. He readily hoisted the American flag before the war was closed, and afterward, when his fort was garrisoned by Lieutenant Missoon, of the United States navy, Sutter was put in command.
Prosperity increased after the war and Sutter started new enterprises. In the latter part of 1848 he had over a thousand acres in wheat; he had erected a sawmill at Coloma (the famous Marshall city) and had nearly finished a large and expensive gristmill at the fort. Then one of his men, Marshall, found the yellow metal at the saw-mill, and this marked the commence, ment of Sutter's downfall. His employes deserted him immediately, the grain crop went to ruin, and he lost twentyfive thousand dollars on the first mill, which could not be finished. A large tannery was also abandoned with quantities of leather in the vats.
The rush of immigration commenced at once, and Sacramento became one of the liveliest and most cosmopolitan cities that the United States ever saw within so short a period. The wondeful times when men grew wealthy in a few days were fairly started.
Sutter now began to lose everything. He had no men left to protect his interests, so that his horses, cattle, hogs, lands, everything, were appropriated. Sacramento city commenced about Sutter's Fort as soon as the excitement was well spread. The first survey was made in December of 1848. Sutter and others determined to start a town before the discovery and did so. It was called Sutterville. This village flourished until Sacramento was started as a rival. Consequent upon the indiscriminate flocking of all sorts and conditions of people to the new town and the meager shelter that the tents and rude huts afforded, there was a tremendous amount of sickness in the place soon after things got started. Attendance, protection and medicine cost heavily. Men died by the score. Coflins were an expensive luxury and many were buried in blankets. In the fall the rains and floods came, adding to the misery. The excitement was unabated, however, and hundreds of hew comers arrived each day, and buildings went up like magic. As soon as people began to settle upon land the "squatter troubles" commenced. Many innocently occupied lands long before granted by Mexico to holders of large tracts, and spent much money and time thereon. Others thought they could beat the Mexican title, and many did so. Some bought their lands, but litigation and trouble started everywhere. No one respected any title which conflicted with his own. A party of citizens at last decided to i-emove a lot of shanties and cabins that obstructed the river levee and they tore the flimsy abodes down right over the owners' heads. A riot ensued at one time and several people were killed. This and others were called "squatter riots," as the organized squatters were conducting the offensive measures. A suit was brought and the judgment, even on appeal, vsras against the squatters. Other riots broke out immediately, and murders were, committed every day. Several of the city officers, including the sheriff, McKinney, were Ifilled. The citizens organized and military aid was sent from San Francisco. The squatters were finally overcome.
Amid all of the excitement and tribulations Sacramento county was organized by the Sacramento legislature at San Jose, and Sacramento city was made the county seat. The capital of the State underwent many changes of locality in the next four years. San Jose was too small to accommodate the officers and attaches of the first session, hence the next meeting was called at Monterey. Vallejo and Benicia then started a war over the seat of State government, and both were at different times the capital of California. Sacramento offered the use of its court-house and vaults, and ultimately secured the legislature. This was in 1854. The supreme court judges decided that San Jose was still the legal capital and caused the records to be removed to that city. Some new judges decided that Sacramento was the capital, and then preparations were commenced for a Capitol building. Various plans fell through, and it was 1860 before the building was commenced. The structure was to be finished in ten months, but it was 1869 before everything was completed.
During the past year the progress of Sacramento has shown a marked improvement over that of the previous year. While no booms or spasmodic advancements, with consequent depressions, have occurred, yet a steady and continuous progress has been made. This is particularly noticeable in the freight shipments. One of the most important steps taken by the city during the past year was the permanent improvement of the levees. Several months ago individual members of the board of trade organized themselves into a levee improvement committee and through their strenuous efforts the board of city trustees decided to call a special election, at which bonds to the amount of $100,000 were voted to raise and improve the levees. Since then the levees have been strengthened and raised and a feeling of absolute security from floods now prevails.
According to the figures furnished by the Southern Pacific Company, the total shipments of fruit from Sacramento during the year aggregated the enormous amount of 161,368,000 pounds, which is almost twice as much as shipped from any point except San Francisco. The total shipments of deciduous green fruit exceeded the tonnage of the previous year by nearly 50,000,000 pounds. According to a well-informed authority Sacramento stands fiist in the amount of tonnage of green fruits, second in the shipments of potatoes, vegetables, raisins and beans, and third in shipments of cannedand dried fruits. It is a noticeable fact that the shipments from Sacramento during the past year amount to more than 21,000,000 pounds in excess of the shipments from the entire State in 1888, and 11,000,000 pounds more than the entire shipments from California in 1889.
During the year a vast amount of building has been done in the residence portion of the city. Among the new buildings may be mentioned the post-oifice, which is rapidly nearing completion. This building is situated at the corner of Seventh and K streets, and will cost $150,000. It is a model of architectural beauty, and when completed will be one of the most imposing structures in Sacramento. It is the intention of the designers to make it one of the most complete postoffices in the State. In the business portion of the city a number of extensive improvements have been made.
At the State capital very many fine improvements have been made. Electricity has been introduced into the building, while the Senate and Assembly chambers have been refitted and remodeled. The Governor's office and the State library have also received the attention of artisans.
At the present time a project is on foot to annex Washington township to Sacramento. A number of business men of the city have taken the matter in hand and are working industriously in the interest of annexation. As was expected, the proposition has been met with considerable opposition by a majority of the residents of Washington. They seem to think that they can take care of the little town across the river without the guidance of the people of Sacramento. Several joint meetings have been held, but the scheme is as far from being consummated now as it was several months ago.
Since the first of the year two electric railway lines have been built in Sacramento. One is known as the P street line, the other as the K street line. The Folsom Water Power Company has secured a franchise to build and operate an electric road, and when this is completed ail parts of the city can be easily reached. The Southern Pacific Company is contemplating the erection of a new freight depot. The present site is considered inadequate, and it would not be surprising to see the preliminary work of a new depot commenced in the immediate future. Other notable improvements are spoken of, but it is doubtful if the)' will be commenced before next year.
MADOR COUNTY was organized from a portion of Calaveras county in 1854. It contained the liveliest camps in the State during the early mining days, notably lone valley and Mokelumne hill, at least one man being killed during Saturday or Sunday for seventeen consecutive weeks. At Jackson was a live oak which became famous as " hanging tree," so many criminals having expiated their offenses upon it. In 1862 it became injured by fire, and had to be cut down ; but it was perpetuated by being engraved on the county seal.
Staging was started in 1853 between Sacramento and the Amador mines. The fare was $20 each way. Horses cost from $300 to $600 each ; stages from $1,000 to $3,000 ; drivers received $150 per month, and hay cost $100 a ton. Up to 1860 the placers were panning out millions ia gold, the quartz mines began to show great richness, and agriculture was taking a permanent stand. Churches and schools sprang up in every settlement. Then canje the rush to the great Comstock, and to Frazer river in British Columbia, and Amador was depopulated almost as rapidly as it had filled up, when the excitement of gold-finding in her own borders in 1849 began. Before many months they began to return.
Hydraulic mining started in Amador as early as 1853-4:. Tin pipes were used, with a pressure of about thirty feet. This method of mining soon advanced to the wonderful completeness that afterwards made it so marvellously effective, and sent mountains scurrying down the streams, creating an antagonism on the part of valley ranchmen which finally caused the suppression of hydraulic mining. Quartz mining has been continued in Amador and some large deposits of rich copper discovered and worked. The quartz mines are on the " mother lode," and the hope is perennial that it may be struck rich any day, resulting in another Comstock. The old mines are prosperous, and new ones are being opened. Increased acreage is being planted to fruit, and the prosperity of the county is on a sound basis.
MARIN COUNTY is as it was established by the original sub-division, one of the smallest, but with a greater coast line than any other county in the State. It shares proprietorship with San Francisco in the world-renowned Golden Gate. Beautiful San Rafael has been the seat of government since the organization of the county.
Marin has its name from a chief of the Lacatuit Indians. He and his braves conquei-ed the Spaniards about the years 1815 and 1824, but Marin was finally captured. He escaped and took refuge upon a small island in San Francisco bay, and his name attached to the mainland to the north. Geographically, Marin is a peninsula, and a very rugged one at that. Its western coast, rocky, barren and steep, is very dangerous to navigation. Inland the majestic peak of Mount Tamalpais, nearly 5,000 feet in elevation, is a notable and picturesque landmark for the country for miles around. The name is said to have originated from the residence of the old Tamal Indians near its base long ago.
If ancient history makes no errors it is likely that Sir Francis Drake was the first vrhite man to visit what is now Marin county. Also, if he did enter the little bay named for him, it is likely that the Golden Gate of to-day did not then exist, and that an old Indian legend that an earthquake rent the coast asunder there is true. Otherwise it seems scarcely possible to explain Drake's failure to discover it. It is undisputed that in 1595 Sebastian Cermenon was wrecked near Punta de los Eeyes( Point Reyes). In 1602 Sebastian Vizcaino found the wreckage, which he described as being in the port of San Francisco. This makes it seem as if the big bay did not exist at that time, and the little Drake's bay was called San Francisco port.
Descending to days that sound more modern the histories and records of Marin claim the first house built in the State, north of the bay of San Francisco. It was a lone structure erected about the year 1776 at an Indian settlement called Olompali, near the Sonoma line. Some traveling Spaniards found the Indians, and in return for hospitalities taught the savages to make huts. It was the father of Camillo Tnitia, chief of the tribe, who constructed the house. Indian remains are still to be found near old Olompali, and many relics have been unearthed there.
In 1817 the Mission San Eafael was founded by Father Ventura Fortuni. By 1842 the mission was almost destroyed. There had been hundreds of the Jouskionmes Indians at the mission up to 1834, when their numbers began to dwindle. A few years later a hostUe tribe drove the holy friars away from the county.
John I. Read was the first white settler who remained in the county. He took up his residence in Sausalito in 1826, and afterward went to Sonoma county, returning to Sausalito in 1832. He plied a small boat, the first ferry on the bay, which he ran between his place and Yerba Buena or San Francisco. In 1834 he received a grant of the rancho "Corte Madera del Presidio" from the Mexicans, and erected the first saw-mill in the county, the framework of which is still standing at Mill Valley. Before 1840 several more settlers came to Marin. This last year brought a number of early pioneer adventurers to the county. Quite a number of Mexican grants were made to various men and families, who settled all over Marin before the war with Mexico broke out. Afterward the gold chase brought many people into the northern portion of the county, but that section was not much settled until 1862.
The cities and towns of Marin are as pretty and picturesque as any in this wonderful State of flowers and sunshine. San Rafael, with its old traditions of a mission established in 181T, with its orchards, vines and roses, surrounded by the warmest and greenest of hills, is still the most important city in the county. Sausalito, snug from the Pacific's wind and fogs, perched romantically upon the hillside, is a general favorite as a summer resort and a retreat for citywearied people. The whole of Marm county, from the rocky, stormbeaten coast of Point Eeyes, to the majestic summit of Mount Tamalpais. and beyond to the verdant hills and undulating valleys, presents a picture of beaut}', happiness and comfort.
The larger proportion of Marin county is hilly, but the hills are covered with verdure,, kept green by the heavy dews from the ocean nearly the entire year, and make splendid pasturing for the immense herds of fine dairy cattle which supply San Francisco with milk. Where planted to grapes, the finest are produced from which the best flavored clarets are made. In an hour's ride of San Francisco are virgin forests of redwood, and Sequoia canyon is said to contain 1,000 acres of these rare trees, from which few have been cut. It ought to be retained unmutilated for the benefit of the millions who will inhabit San Francisco and Marin counties in the future, when the redwood and the buffalo have become traditions, and who will appreciate the grandeur of these symmetrical trees, whose swaying crowns are kissed by the passing clouds.
The towns of Point Eeyes, Tomales and Novato are in the center of the dairying district, carrying on a brisk traffic in dairy produce, at which places there have been several large creameries established to meet the constantly growing demand for butter and cheese. Sausalito, Belvidere, Mill Yalley and Larkspur, are much sought for as resorts for pleasure and home building. Bolinas, an obscure little town, is beautifully situated on the shore of Bolinas bay. Outside of Marin county, probably very little is known of it, as it has not as yet any railroad communication with the outside world. Its locality abounds in natural resources, chiefly mineral, and it is to be regretted that they are undeveloped. The bluffs, extending for a long distance up the coast, are deeply streaked with rich veins of bitumen, resembhng the Santa Cruz formation. At the base of these bluffs may be seen tiny springs of petroleum bubbling from the earth, while the atmosphere in that vicinity is redolent of the odor of coal oil, denoting a large flow of that valuable commodity.
A few yards from the shore, on Duxbury reef, is a constant and extensive supply of natural gas, which forces itself from the living rocks, and when ignited, a number of jets of flame, some several feet in height, are plainly visible. Prominent State mineralogists have pronounced it in unlimited supply. Farther inland, in the high ridge of hills overlooking Bolinas, are rich copper leads, as in some places specimens of the blue mineral may be found on the surface. Large coal beds also exist here, and were being worked by private parties a short time ago, but for want of capital and lack of transportation facilities, were abandoned. With a railroad, Bolinas as a i)leasure resort would rival the most popular watering places on the Pacific coast. Its surf bathing surpasses that of Santa Cruz, and it has also a pebbly beach which is much larger and where can be found finer pebbles than at Pescadero,' while its climate is absolutely delightful. Marin county is slowly progressing, but with a railroad to Bolinas, which will open new resources, her prosperity will be increased immeasurably.
SOLANO COUNTY has more miles of navigable waters washing its soil than any inland .county in the State. It surrounds Suisun bay, and its southeast boundary is the Sacramento river. Solano was declared a county in 1850, but it was two years before the organization was perfected. Solano had its name from an old Indian chief, and he was named by the missionary, Francisco Solano, who christened him when he embraced the Christian religion. Chief Solano was given the Suisun grant, containing 17,700 acres. The members of the tribe of Solano, previously called Sem Yete, had their headquarters at Rockville.
There are no mountains in Solano, but manv good sized hills, and these are very productive. Very little gold or other valuable mineral has been found in the county. Building stone, some marble and large quarries of basalt rock, are utilized. But as a fruit producer, Solano county has obtained high reputation. The first California fruits presented to the Queen of England were sent by the great and successful horticulturist, A. T. Hatch, one of the World's Fair Commissioners, and were acknowledged as follows:
OsBOENE, lath August, 1892. Sie:
I have received the commands of the Queen to convey to you the expression of Her Majesty's thanks for your attention in sending, as an offering to Her Majesty, a case containing pears, peaches, nectarines, prunes and plums, from California, which she has been pleased to accept. I should mention that they arrived in good condition, and that they were served at the Royal table.
I am, Sir, your obedient servant,
J. C. COWELL,
Master of the Household.
Mr. a. T. Hatch,
The pioneers of Solano county were the family of William Wolfskill. Wolfskill came to California in 1828, but settled upon a Mexican grant of four leagues of land upon the Rio de los Putos, in Solano, in 1842. There were only four white families in the county in 1846. The valleys then were covered with a splendid growth of wild oats, and herds of wild cattle and horses roamed with bands of elk and deer.
After the success of the American arms over Mexico there was much bitter litigation over land titles. Considerable blood was shed over disputes which occurred out of court. Six of the Mexican grants, some of the largest of which were overthrown, covered nearly all of the arable land in the county at that time.
In 1848 Benicia was visited by General W. T. Sherman. He found a solitary adobe house there, occupied by a Mr. Hastings and family, with Doctor Semple proprietor of a small ferry-boat. Benicia started out to be the metropolis of the State. It was incorporated in 1849, or 1850, as a city, at about which time the government located its barracks there. In 1852 the Pacific Mail Steamship Company erected works there. In 1859 Benicia was, for a time, the State capital, and for a long time it was the county seat. The town erected quite a pretentious State building at its own expense, but it soon lost the capital, which was removed to Sacramento. In 1868 the county seat was removed to Fairfax. The Pacific Mail Company also left and came to San Francisco. Benicia hardly sustained the shock of so many removals, but finally recovered.
There are prosperous little towns all over the county of Solano, but Benicia and Yallejo are the most important. In Eockville, the old camp of the Indians, the first blacksmith shop in the county was erected in earlydays, by John M. Perry. This brawny smith produced several rude plows, which he sold for sixty-fiye dollars apiece. The leading towns of the county show an improved condition of affairs, particularly Yallejo, Yacaville and Dixon, and while other towns have not shown such great advancement, they have held their own. Besides having to her credit a number of industries of which any town might be proud, these have had a very prosperous year. The greatest projected enterprise, the realization of which means more for Yallejo than anything else, is that of bringing pure crystal mountain water into the town, in a system to be owned by the city. The source of this system is at the great Yallejo falls, about fourteen miles distant in an air line. The estimated cost of the plant is $250,000. The people have already given a two-thirds vote in favor of the issuance of the bonds, and the work of surveying, and preparation of plans, specifications and estimates, is completed. With the completion of this new water system, in which the Navy Department of the United States has manifested an equal interest with the people of Yallejo, the town looks for more good things to come.
CONTRA COSTA COUNTY was one of the original subdivisions of the State. According to General Yallejo it means " opposite coast," and was deemed appropriate because it was opposite San Francisco. It contains 750 square miles, divided into 450 of hill and mountain, 190 of valley, and 110 of marsh and tule lands.
The Mount Diablo range of mountains, with the great isolated peak itself, are prominent features in the typography of Contra Costa. The peak stands almost alone in the center of the county, and rising so abruptly possesses many advantages of observation. An interesting tradition of the origin of the name exists in Contra Costa's store of legends. When the old Spanish Padres controlled the whole country they were visited by some Indians who brought nuggets of gold from Diablo. The natives already had inherited stories of a former vomiting of smoke and lire from the peak. The padres, to prevent them from depleting the hill of its golden treasures, took the gold, and, placing it in a tub of water which had been secretly poisoned, told the Indians to let their dogs drink the water. The animals satisfied their thirst there, and immediately died. The padres drew a harrowing picture of the destruction sure to follow if the Indians still sought ihe gold, and the vivid example of the death of the canines completed the fright of the simple aborigines. The gold was therefore unmolested by the savages, and the name of Monte Diablo, - " Devil's Mountain" - readily attached to the mysterious hill.
Contra Costa and Alameda counties are closely united in their histories. They shared the same early explorers, settlers and traditions, and large tracts of land have belonged to both prior to the division that marks their present boundaries. In 1823, Francisco Castro and Ignacio Martinez made application to the Mexican authorities, the first for the San Pablo Rancho, the last for the Pinole Eancho, each four leagues in extent. These were the pioneer settlers of Contra Costa. They erected adobe houses, fenced off corrals for their cattle, planted their vines and orchards, and started in at extensive reclamation of the wild country. Among their nearest neighbors were the Peraltas family, who then owned nearly or quite all of Alameda county, and the Castros at San Lorenzo. A number of Mexican families followed in the next few succeeding years, generally applying for and acquiring tracts four leagues in extent. In 1835, thirty citizens of this portion of California petitioned the government, then at Monterey, to permit them to attach themselves to San Jose for judicial purposes. After considerable " red tape " the petition was granted. The first American settler was Dr. John Marsh, who purchased the Los Meganos Rancho in 1837. By the year 1846, when war broke out between the United States and Mexico, a considerable number of immigrants had come to settle in the valley of Contra Costa. At that time an estimate places the total of Americans in California at 700.
Martinez, the beautiful little town of to-day, with its cheerful, cozy residences, was long the foremost city of Contra Costa. Ten years after it got a start there were quite a number of flourishing business houses there and schools attended by 358 children. About this time the most important discoveries of coal mines in the Contra Costa hills were made. A number of splendid veins were opened and have been furnishing fuel ever since. Some of the coal mines in the Mount Diablo region are capable of an output of 150 tons per day, but they have not been worked to their full capacity recently, owing to the closing down of a number of large factories, and the demand for coal being less.
Petroleum at various places was also discovered in Contra Costa county, but although parties spent thousands of dollars in the development of the vrells, the oil was never found in quantities to pay for the trouble and expense. There is, however, a possibility that in the near future the oil industry will be developed in this county. A well is being sunk near La Fayette for that purpose. It is now down over 200 feet and yields a considerable amount of paraflBne oil. Gas constantly is liberated by the bore, and the well borers estimate that sufficient escapes to illuminate a small house.
The county's railroad facilities have heretofore been limited to the Southern Pacific main line, running along its eastern and northern borders, and the Livermore branch through Alameda county, leaving its rich interior a long distance from railroad communication. This has been one of the great drawbacks to the development of the county, but the Southern Pacific Railroad has this year built a branch road through the Ygnacio and San Ramon valleys, giving better accommodations and shipping facilities to the farmers and residents.
Fifty-five acres of valuable water front near Martinez were sold recently, the supposition being that it was to be used by the Salt Lake and San Francisco Railroad. Surveys have been made through the county, and talk of a competing railroad is heard on every side. Such an enterprise would be of estimable benefit to Contra Costa county and to the State at large.
CALAYERAS COUNTY is one of the original twenty-seven subdivisions of California. The name Calaveras, signifying skulls, is said to have been given to the river so-called by one Gabriel Moraga, a famous early-day Indian fighter, on account of the great number of skulls which he found there, ghastly relics of a deadly battle between the Indians of the plains and those of the mountains over the salmon fisheries of the stream. As originally laid out this county included portions of what are now included within Tuolumne, Alpine and Amador counties. It owed its settlement in the first place to the flood of miners who, radiating from the central points of Sacramento and Stockton, followed up all the streams heading in the Sierra Nevada, prospecting their beds for the gold which they found in large quantities. One of the richest of these streams was Dry creek, and in the region drained by it quickly sprang up the settlements of Amador, Sutter and Yolcano, which under subsequent quartz development sustained themselves as flourishing towns, and the first two of which are to this day thrifty and prosperous. Mining was commenced at Yolcano in the same year that the discovery was made at Coloma, and in 1853 the town had a population of 5,000 and supported a newspaper.
Sutter Creek was incorporated in 1856 and still retains a good measure of prospeiity, presenting a marked contrast to most of the old mining towns of the foothills. While Pleasant Yalley was designated by the act forming Calaveras county as the seat of government, Jackson is the first place mentioned in local history as having enjoyed the honor, while the place originally selected is now only a memory. Jackson was founded in 1848 and was at first called Botellas, the name being subsequently changed to the one it now bears. Subsequently the county seat was removed to Mokelumne Hill, and in 1866 San Andreas carried oflf the prize, retaining it until the present day.
South of San Andreas or San Andres, as it should correctly be, Carson and Angels sprang into prominence at an early day. The first named place is little more than a memory now, although its mines have yielded large sums. Angels still holds its own, having a number of quartz mines that have paid steadily ever since their discovery. In 1864 the discovery of valuable silver lodes in the eastern part of the county led to the segregation of a large section on the eastern slope of the Sierra Nevada, which was erected into Alpine county.
Calaveras had within its borders, when first established, a number of places which attained large prominence and subsequently declined until little but their names remained. Among these was Yeomet, at the junction of the north and south forks of the Cosumnes Muletown, Drytown, Fiddletown, etc. Among the places whicn maintain much of their former importance are Copperopolis, Murphy s and Milton. In this county are some of the most productive mines in the State and the mineral deposits are practically inexhaustible. The baser metals, copper, iron, cinnabar, etc., are found in abundance, and ledges of marble, limestone and granite, and undeveloped deposits of coal, are known to exist. Among the mineral deposits is a veritable mountain of paint, which for extent and variety of colors is probably unsurpassed in the world. In the eastern portion of the county is a vast tinaber belt of magnificent extent, which is comparatively untouched ; live oak, sugar and nut pine predominate. Several most interesting natural wonders are also to be found there, among which are the world-renowned big trees, the great cave, with its magnificent chambers and wonderful stalactites, the natural bridge, etc. While the principal industry is mining, considerable attention is given to agriculture and fruit raising. Old mining ditches have been converted into irrigating canals, and in the mountains huge reservoirs have been constructed for the preservation of water, Calaveras is destined in time to attain large importance by reason of its horticultural and agricultural resources.
During the year 1892 Calaveras county held her own in the onward course of the State. The mines about Angel's camp are improving, which fact verifies the assertion that that town will become one of the most important mining camps in the State. Gravel mining about Central hill and Chile junction is reported improving, new companies having taken hold of them who will rush their progress and output for 1893; Mokelumne Hill also about the same as the past year, although considerable mining is being done thereabouts. Citrus fruits and nut culture is receiving attention.
ALPINE COUNTY was formed in March, 1864, out of those portions of El Dorado, Amador, Calaveras and Mono counties, lying near the summit of the Sierra Nevada Mountains, and the county seat established at Silver Mountain. The origin of the necessity for this subdivision is peculiar to mining regions. In 1860 some scattering settlers were living at the end of the road leading southward from Genoa, Nevada, along the base of the Sierra. Late in the fall two or three Norwegians with burros passed that place and disappeared in the unknown region beyond. A few weeks later they emerged. The following spring they returned, frequently passing back and forth, adding others to their number, and soon they reported the discovery of rich silver mines at a place they called Silver Mountain. As the first few cabins constructed in the vicinity began to assume the proportions of a town it was christened, after a silver mine in Norway, Konigsberg, but afterward became known as the town of Silver Mountain. Prospectors flocked in and swarmed over the country. It was a part of the great Washoe excitement. Toll roads were constructed from various points *' to the town of Konigsberg or Silver Mountain in the counties of El Dorado and Amador," to a point known as Silver Mountain in Mono county, as the records have it. It was not known for a time to what political division of the State this locality belonged. No one had to pay taxes, and every one was arbiter of his own rights.
Aside from the mining interests another industry of considerable magnitude had sprung into existence. Sawlogs, square timber, and cordwood were cut and floated down the Carson river to Empire, Nev.,for use at the Virginia mines and mills. Over 175,000 cords of wood went down in a single "drive." But mining was the all-absorbing industry, and gave hope and promise of great prosperity. A history of the mining enterprises will tell how those hopes were shattered, how chimerical those promises proved, and why so many decaying mills, deserted homes and abandoned towns lie scattered about the beautiful Alpine hills lo-day. Abundance of ore was found which assayed well, and mills were erected for its reduction after the most approved plans for working the ores of the Comstock. But this ore could not be worked that way. It was not "free milling." Practical methods had yet to be learned. Then began experiments with new "processes" - costly, discouraging, disheartening processes! Silver mining was in its infancy. " Science creeps from point to point," and before success had been attained many companies failed.
In 1889-90 the first successful process for working the rebellious ores of this vicinity was introduced Ottokar Hoffman at the Colorado No. 2 mine. Lewis Chalmers also had worked successfully the ores of the Morning Star by a similar process. These two mines were among the last to be worked, and could be paying dividends, but mismanagement caused them to be closed down. There are good mines in Alpine, although not a single stroke of work is being done in any of them to-day.
The natural advantages here are good. In the northern part of the county, embracing a portion of Carson valley, are some fine farms. Grain crops, vegetables and hay never fail. Many kinds of fruit thrive well. No finer apples are grown in the world. The atmos[)liere is dry and irrigation necessary, but water of the purest kind is in abundance and to spare. From the Blue lakes and other reservoirs water is supplied to mills, farms and towns of other counties. Many bands of horses, cattle and sheep from other parts of the State and from Nevada are grazed and fattened here. There is not a practicing lawyer, doctor, incarcerated criminal or pauper in the county, and the Indians are peaceable, industrious and self-supporting. As a field for the sportsman and a place of healthful recreation for the invalid and those wishing to escape from business cares and the heated season of other localities, no better place can be found than Alpine county during July, August, September, October and November.
SAN MATEO COUNTY, adjacent to the little county of San Francisco on the north, completes the peninsula formed by the bay and the Pacific ocean. The county was not made at the original division, but was set apart in April of 1856. San Mateo was formed from what had been part of San Francisco county, and left the latter about room enough for the great metropolis.
Prior to the war with Mexico there were not over half a dozen settlers in what is now San Mateo, although some of these few had been there since 1835. Some had arrived earlier. Many immigrants came soon after the war opened. During the war one Francisco Sanchez raised quite a body of troops and fought the Americans at San Mateo with much success. When hostilities had ceased there were many people in the county, the first settlers occupying the western slope of the mountains. By 1852-3 the small village on the shore of the bay had begun to grow. For as much as three years after the organization of the county nothing but the lumbering interests were of importance as an industry. During 1852 a belief spread that the lands would be declared Government property and the Mexican grants repudiated. Settlers rapidly took possession of everything under this notion, and much trouble ensued. These squatters subsequently either purchased their lands or abandoned their locations.
The lumbering interest of San Mateo first brought her into prominence, and for a long time was her chief industry. Her redwood forests were of great extent, and some of the trees rivaled the giant sequoias of Calaveras and Mariposa. In 1870 there was still standing, within twelve miles of Eedwood City, a tree measuring seventy-five feet in circumference. There was also a hollow tree near Pescadero into which a horseman might easily ride, and in a hollow tree near Dearsville seven wood-choppers made their bunks and slept. Before 1840 the " whipsaw " came to San Mateo, and by 1847 large numbers of mills were in full blast.
Menlo Park is improving rapidly, that being the home of the great Leland Stanford Junior University. Two miles east of Menlo Park, in the Ravenswood district, the foundations are laid for the Theological Seminary which the Catholics are building. This will be one of the largest and most complete educational institutions on the coast, and the only one of its kind. It has a fund of $300,000 for building, besides a magnificent tract of land.
The increase of the assessment roll is a little less than $1,000,000 for the fiscal year, but if taken up to date the increase is estimated at over $2,000,000. Many of the large ranches that for-years have hindered the settlement and development of the county are being subdivided and sold in small tracts. Especially is this so adjoining Eedwood City, Menlo Park and San Mateo, where fruit orchards and cottages, as well as the more stately homes of the wealthy, are taking the place of cattle ranges. A feature of San Mateo county worthy of note is the splendid system of county roads. For years much money and careful attention have been bestowed on the roads, and during the year 1892 over $20,000 has been used for their improvement. The extension of the electric railroad into the north end of the county from San Francisco opens a splendid location for workmen's homes, and many have been built in the vicinity of Colma and Baden.
The South San Francisco Land and Improvement Company has just completed, about two miles from Baden station, at San Bruno point, an immense establishment for slaughtering stock, packing meats, and for the manufacture of oleomargarine. Here also a town of about six hundred population has sprung up. The expenditure by the company represents over $1,000,000.
ALAMBDA COUNTY was formed in 1853 from a portion of Santa Clara and Contra Costa counties, of which it had previously formed a part. The county-seat was established at New Haven, now called Alvarado. Then it went to San Leandro, and finally to Oakland, where it will always remain. The county contains 512,000 acres of land, divided almost equally between hill and valley. Twenty thousand acres along the bay are overflowed by high tide. The soil of the county is exceedingly fertile, and the natural consequence is that every available acre is a garden spot, the residence sections being uniformly beautified with a luxuriance of flowers and semi-tropical foliage.
The earliest history of Alameda county is in the records of tiie explorations of the founders of the early California missions. These mission founders were the first whites to penetrate to the sites of Oakland, Alameda and other towns, covered at that time by a heavy growth of oaks and other trees. Don Pedro de Allerni, an emissary of the Catholic Church of Spain, seeking for suitable localities for missions, seems to have been the pioneer white explorer of Alameda. The real settlement began about 1820. Don Luis Maria Peralta, a native of Tubac, Sonora, in consideration of services rendered to the various old missions, was granted by Governor Don Pablo Vincento de Sola, a tract of land five leagues in extent, which embraced the present sites of Alameda and Oakland, reaching from San Leandro creek to the northern boundary of the county. Don Luis had a numerous family, and in 1842 he divided his estates equally between four sons. In a short time American settlers began to flock in, and when a few years had witnessed the victory of the United States over Mexico, tiie accession of California to the Union, and the consequent overthrow of Mexican rule, the Peraltas saw their possessions slip away, and the flag of the AngloAmerican settlers floating over the homes that thev had improved, and by 1854 Oakland had become a city.
The town of Alameda was laid out by Chipman and Anglinbaugh in 1852, and a number of landings for boats were constructed at the mouths of creeks. Alameda has progressed from the first, until now it is said to be the most beautiful town in the country. It has two railroads, which carry local passengers from end to end of the place free. Its cottages are neat and picturesque, and its sidewalks consist of miles and miles of white artificial stone, bordered by a selvage of ever green grass. Its water supply is ample in quantity and excellent in quality, and it is claimed to be a lovely bed-chamber for San Francisco business men, very many of whom own residences there. Clean, healthy and quiet, it affords a charming retreat to some thousands whose days are spent in San Francisco. It will not be many years before Oakland and Alameda will be under the same name and local government. Their interests are identical.
Oakland is a great city, and a beautiful and prosperous one. Being at the terminus of the overland lines of railroad, and several local lines, it may be styled a railroad city. It has a number of electric railways traversing the city in every direction, and running beyond the city limits to the best farming lands in the county. Probably the best constructed electric railroad this side of the Rockies is the one just completed by the Southern Pacific Company, and now in operation. It commences at First and Broad way and goes out Telegraph avenue direct to the State University grounds. There are also two branches to the road, which will cut into Lorin and other small towns. The Meetz horse car line to Alameda is now being turned into an electric road.
The assessed value of the property in Alameda county in 1891 was $83,350,822, and in 1892 had increased to $89,371,681, or over $6,000,000. The tax levy in the county has been quite moderate when compared with some of the counties in the State. In 1890 the State and county tax inside cities and towns was $1.00, and outside $1.30; in 1891 it was eighty-five cents inside and $1.15 outside, and in 1892 it was eighty cents inside and $1-.10 outside. The county is run on a cash basis, all claims being paid in warrants, which are immediately cashed.
The University of California, situated at Berkeley, founded and located in 1868, is a monument to its own achievements. The school, broad and liberal in its principles, ably appointed in every department, romantically situated under the shadows of the Berkeley hills, embowered in characteristic California loveliness, tells its own story. Its merit as one of the foremost institutes of learning is unquestioned.
The public schools in Oakland and Alameda county never were in a more flourishing condition than at the present time. Recently the people of Oakland voted bonds in the sum of $400, (]00 for the purpose of building new school-houses. The issue runs for twenty years, and the bonds bear interest at the rate of four per cent, per annum. They were purchased by Arthur D. Thomson, president of the First JSTational Bank of Oakland, who paid cash for them and a premium of $8,844. The construction of the new school-houses in Oakland has been commenced. The new high school building, which will cost $165,000, will be located on the block bounded by Eleventh, Twelfth, Jefferson and Grove streets. The new grammar schools will be located in East Oakland, third ward and sixth ward, and large additions will be made to some of the present school-houses. In the country many new school-houses have been built during the past year. At Livermore, a union high school is being constructed at a cost of $11,000; another at Centerville at a cost of $12,500, and a tfciird at Haywards at a cost of $5,600. Berkele}' has increased its school facilities by two new school-houses, and a fine school building was recently completed in Bay district. The Piedmont district also has a fine new school building.
The work of improving the Oakland harbor has progressed finely during the past year under the supervision of the United States engineers. The work of the tidal canal has progressed slowly, for the reason that much time was spent in dredging the estuary. An effort will be made by the citizens of Oakland to have the next Congress appropriate a sum sufficient to complete the improvement. Contracts have been let by a number of private citizens for the building of wharves along the water front, an improvement which has long been needed.
An important improvement now in progress is the construction of the boulevard around Lake Merritt. The people by a popular vote defeated a proposition to bond the city for $400,000 for a boulevard. The citv council, however, decided to go ahead with the work that had been commenced, and has made an appropriation of $100,000 for the same. The boulevard will be paid for by a direct tax. Lake Merritt will be dredged and the boulevard will cut across the southeast corner of it, and thence northeasterly around the lake.
SAN FRANCISCO CITY and county would furnish naaterial for the most exciting history ever written. Its size and importance compared with its age in years, is superior to that of any other city on the globe. Its progress has been identified with that of every other section of the State, and it is the pride of Californians, from San Diego to Del ISTorte, that they have helped to build it, and it is their metropolis.
The belief in the careful supervision of an overruling Providence, producing events and discoveries exactly when His subjects are prepared to utilize them, receives strong support from the history of the discovery of the entrance to the greatest and safest harbor in the world - the finding of the Golden Gate. To modern mariners the entrance to the magnificent bay of San Francisco is so capacious and well defined, and gives such unmistakable evidence of something of inestimable Value beyond, to reward the greedy adventurer, that it is inexplicable to them how any one, sailing up or down the coast, could fail to have been attracted to it. History affirms that three different navigators of note passed Golden Gate unnoticed as far back as the sixteenth century. Sir Francis Drake was on the coast in July, 1579, and remained long enough to give his name to a small body of water on the Marin county coast. Vizcaino was on the coast in 1596, and again in 1602, and on the latter voyage discovered San Diego harbor, and the bay of Monterey, but saw nothing of the larger and more desirable bay of San Francisco. His last expedition had been fitted out by Count Monterey, and was intended as one of exploration, and to find and lay claim to everything valuable along the whole coast.
Still the bay of San Francisco remained undiscovered, in spite of the fact that Drake had spread glowing accounts of California and its wealth of gold and pearls. In Spain, dozens of small expeditions, whose object was to come here, failed utterly. Spain and England were both jealous of any territory that the other might acquire, but Spain did much more to become established in the new El Dorado than any other country. The discovery was finally accomplished by accident. The " beautiful bay " of Monterey had been carefully described by Vizcaino as he had seen it more than 150 years before, and the mission fathers were bent on utilizing it. To that end an expedition was sent from San Diego in 17Y9 by land, to more thoroughly explore it, and discover all its advantages. Supplied with a fairly correct description, the expedition passed Monterey bay without recognizing it, and journeyed on to the hills over-looking the magnificent land-locked bay of San Francisco. For a time they were certain this was the bay of Monterey, but more thorough examination convinced them that it was not, and that they had found a valuable harbor hitherto undiscovered. A patron saint, Francis, was supposed to have led them there, and it was therefore called San Francisco bay. The discoverers returned to San Diego and reported their find. Singularly the mission of San Francisco wa'S not founded until six years later. June 27, 1776, the missionaries with their paraphernalia started for San Francisco by land, and settled upon the northern extremity of the peninsula that forms the present county, establishing their presidio about where the Government array headquarters is to-day. A vessel laden with goods, cattle, horses, sheep, hogs and everynew mission by water, but did not land until August 18th following. September lYth solemn possession was taken of the presidio amid imposing ceremonies. The harbor was explored, and it was found that it had only one opening to the Pacific. The mission was taken possession of formally in November, " when the want of an organ was supplied by discharging the muskets, and the lack of incense was atoned for by the smell of burnt powder," says a historian of the tim.e. The mission was not established at the presidio, but further south, upon Mission creek, not far v/ithin the limits of the city of San Francisco, in that part still known as the Mission. It was not around these mission buildings that Yerba Buena, or San Francisco was built, but rather between the mission and the presidio, at the little cove of Yerba Buena, opposite Yerba Buena island, known now as Goat island. The name Yerba Buena, signifying " good herb," was given for a small shrub which flourished abundantly all over the peninsula and the bay islands.
Before 1835 the village of Yerba Buena was not in existence. The Mexican government had decided to build a little town on the site near the little cove some time before anything was done. General Figueroa, then governor, forbade any grants within a limit of 200 varas (about 185 yards) of the shore line, as he wished to hold the land for government purposes. Figueroa died before anything was done, and matters became mixed up. In 1835 Captain W. A. Kichardson was appointed first harbor-master of San Francisco, or Yerba Buena at that time. The house was really a lent, made of a ship's foresail stretched upon four upright posts. Ships from various parts of the world had come frequently to the bay before the house was built.
May, 1836, another citizen came to Yerba Buena to start a business in the little town. It was Jacob Primer Leese, and he decided that a location near the cove was the best to be had. The order of General Figueroa stood in his way, so he was obliged to go to Monterey and have Governor Don Mariano Chico direct that he be given his choice of locations. Leese took lumber bade to Yerba Buena with him, and erected the second house in San Francisco near the corner of Clay and Dupont streets. The house was finished on the morning of July 4th. It was the first glorious Fourth in San Francisco, and Mr. Leese and Captain Kichardson prepared for a grand celebration and housewarming. Several ships in the harbor loaned all their colored bunting, and with an American and Mexican flag, its decorations were very gay. Captain Kichardson had invited everybody for miles around, an orchestra had been procured and some small cannon were borrowed from the presidio. Guests began to assemble in the afternoon, and sixty were soon in attendance. Many Sonoma people and all grandees of the Mexican and Mission governments who could get there came. Small tents were erected to provide comfort. Dinner was served at 5 o'clock, and then patriotic toasts were indulged in by everybody. After dinner a dance was held, and the fun was kept up at great length. Mr. Leese says : " Our Fourth ended on the evening of the 5th. "
In a few days Leese landed his large stock of goods, and his guests were heavy purchasers. Leese married a sister ot General Vallejo very soon, and on April 15, 1838, Eosalie Leese, the first child bom in San Francisco, blessed the union. That year Leese put two more buildings up ; and the little town began to get started. In 1839 the village was surveyed. The limits were from Pacific street to Sacramento street one way, and from Dupont to Montgomery the other.
Up to 1844 Yerba Buena was a mere village of a dozen houses, and about fifty permanent residents. Up to 1811 its history is simply a record of the transactions of the Hudson Bay Fur Company. This company disposed of its interests in 1846 and moved away. By that year, in the summer, there were about two hundred people in the town and perhaps fifty houses had been erected. The growth of the place was very rapid after that period. By April of next year seventynine houses clustered about the cove. In five months of that year seventy-eight new edifices went up. Many of the houses were adobe, but some were mere shanties. The population had increased to five hundred.
At this time the alcalde of the place, Washington A. Bartlett, decided that the name Yerba Buena was hardly befitting for so pretentious a village, and he therefore styled the town San Francisco, and had an ordinance printed so fixing it. A newspaper published in the town, called the Calif ornia Star, San Francisco's first journalistic venture, published a list of the inhabitants, in 1847. There were representatives from the United States, California, Mexico, Canada, Chile, England, France, Germany, Ireland, Scotland, Switzerland, Denmark, Malta, New Holland, New Zealand, Peru, Poland, Kussia, Sweden, the West Indies and the Hawaiian islands. Many of the foreigners were latterly from different parts of the United States.
The gold rush of 1848 soon brought a large and excited population to San Francisco. Lots had been sold in the town the year before, when the first waterfront properties were disposed of. In the town fifty vara lots were sold for $12 apiece. In the spring of 1848 the first intelligence of gold discoveries reached San Francisco. Later a few miners came in and gold specimens arrived. People began to leave, singly and in crowds. Labor rose rapidly in value, business places were deserted, sailors left their ships, and everybody went wild. In the month of May one hundred and fifty people left San Francisco, and numbers departed daily. They all left everything behind in their hurry, and lost much of their property. By June the two papers that were being published in San Francisco were suspended because everyone connected with them - proprietors, editors and printers - had skipped out to the mines. Some of the many times millionaires of San Francisco then made their vast fortunes sure by becoming possessed of all the real estate they could carry.
In August, 1848, news was received of the end of the war with Mexico, and a grand celebration was held. Property began to be of great value, and lots jumped to big figures. While numbers of people went off to the mines hundreds of newcomers arrived. All who wished could get work, and wages ranged from $10 to $30 a day. The State's whole population began to flock to San Francisco for supplies, and everything was needed. There were no accommodations for them, so that houses had to be hastily constructed.
Lots went up to higher prices, buildings were started every day, and tents dotted the hillsides all over San Francisco's present site; everybody made money and was growing rich. Gambling saloons started everywhere - the whole country was afire with excitement. Thousands kept pouring in, the mines increased in wealth, and their gold came to San Francisco for more supplies. By the beginning of 1849 there were 2,000 people in San Francisco.
From, this time on the history of San Francisco grew so fast that the transactions of any year would have furnished material for a large history. The sand dunes and sage brush disappeared rapidly. Grand improvements rushed on apace. There is no counterpart of the rapid growth of San Francisco except in marvelous Chicago, which began its forward movement almost to a day with the first receipt of gold from California.
Business ventures were conducted on a grand scale, and movements for the moral and intellectual betterment of citizens were equally pronounced. Schools and churches were established, and in several instances the houses of worship were constructed in the East, and sent around Cape Horn in the holds of sailing vessels. The business man had to have his morning paper with his breakfast, and the churchman perused with avidity the news supplied by his church organ. San Francisco had shaken off the censurable debris of mining communities, and adopted the healthy charms of cultured centers of Christian civilization.
As vast numbers of energetic men had come to San Francisco from south of the Ohio river, it is not surprising that their sympathies were with the people of the seceding States after the fall of Sumter, nor that they hoped and believed that California might be added to the Southern Confederacy, of whose successful establishment very many of them never entertained a doubt. Their strength in numbers was so considerable that the loyal majority entertained grave misgivings as to the result should the conflict of arms be precipitated upon California. When the war was well under way, Governor John G. Downey, promoted to the position by the election of Governor Milton G. Latham to the United States Senate, had been elected lieutenant governor by Democratic votes, but was patriotically loyal to the Constitution of the United States. He authorized the enlistment of six regiments to be mustered into the service of the United States, and which number completely filled the quota of California under the calls of the President of the United States up to this time. These men relieved the regular soldiers still on duty on the Pacific coast and were assigned to active duty wherever soldiers were in demand in California, Arizona and New Mexico. The action of Governor Downey gave joy and encouragement to the loyal men of San Francisco, who hastened to enroll in the California contingent.
But there were a great number of the patriotic young men of San Francisco who were determined to participate in the stirring events transpiring in Virginia. As the Government seemed unlikely to order any of the forces organized in California to the Atlantic States, the historical California Hundred was formed. Captain J. Sewell Reed, a native of Massachusetts, conceived the idea of this immortal band, which was selected from several hundred young men who offered, and who were not only expert horsemen, and accustomed to the use of fire-arms, but were all able to bear their own expenses to the seat of active hostilities. They were mustered into the United States service by Colonel Ringgold, of the regular army. They represented by birth nearly every Northern State. When organized they were reviewed by the mayor of San Francisco, attended by the principal business men and citizens, and went to Starr King's Church in a body, where he consecrated them to the service of the country in as eloquent an address as he ever delivered.
As evidence of the earnest loyalty of all classes at that time, and their anxiety to be identified with the glorious cause of the Union, one incident is mentioned. Places where a company could practice, drill and become accustomed to military discipline were not as common then as now in San Francisco. There were no National Guard Barracks. David Fitzgibbon, a native of Ireland, long resident in San Francisco, was the lessee at a high rental of " Assembly Hall," located at the corner of Post and Kearney, where the " White House" emporium now is. His place was exactly adapted to the requirements of the men, the lower floor for a drill room, and the upper floors for sleepingquarters. He hunted up Captain Reed, and tendered its free use to his company. It was gladly accepted, and became the home of this gallant band until its departure by steamer for New York, and there their friends gave them their parting blessings.
Four more full companies organized immediately. and followed under command of Major C. Crowninshield. The California Hundred were first assigned to duty as Company A, Second Massachusetts Cavalry Captain Reed was killed while at the head of his eomrnand in a charge at Drainesville, Virginia, February 22, 1864, and how these five hundred Californians shared in the severest campaigns in Virginia is evidenced by the fact that only one hundred and eighty-three weremus tared out at the close of the war, and a great number of these held rank as commissioned officers. Very many of them are among the most successful business men in San Francisco to-day, and all are specially honored. Col. C. Mason Kinne, the assistant secretary of the Liverpool and London and Globe Insurance Company, the pioneer company in San Francisco, was one of the members of the California Hundred.
When San Francisco began to put on the airs becoming a metropolis, there were several reasons why abodes and business houses displayed no great architectural beauty, nor any special magnificence in proportions. Lumber was $600 a thousand feet. There were evidences that earthquakes in the past had shaken adobe structures to pieces, and it was doubtful whether tall buildings, however massive their walls, could withstand the shock of even such tremblors as were not unusual in mining days. It required some courage to be first in constructing a tall house. One of the first great houses constructed in the business part of the city was the Halleck block, on Montgomery street, constructed for General H. W. Halleck, then a resident in San Francisco. That was followed by the Nevada Bank block, the Palace and Baldwin hotels, the Phelan block, and some others of good dimensions. ITo harm came to any of them, and then M. H. de Young was inspired to erect a "sky-scraper" as an imposing home for the San Francisco Chronicle, and very many timid people pronounced it a risky thing to do, but those occupying the ninth and tenth stories seem to have no more nervous dread of a disaster from a quake than if they were domiciled in a one-story block of granite. The Crocker family and D. O. Mills, and the Mutual Life Insurance Company, of New York, and the Pacific Mutual Insurance Company, of San Francisco, have all since put up great piles which would be deemed spacious as well as ornamental in any city in the world. The wisdom of Mr. de Young has been endorsed by as careful business men as there are in the State, and his example followed to the extent of the expenditure of millions of dollars which would be utterly lost were their magnificent buildings wrecked by earthquake shock or otherwise. San Francisco has become the home of architectural ornaments, not alone in the business part of the city, but in all the residence districts. San Francisco is better provided with internal railroad facilities than any city in this country, and probably in the world. Its numerous points of high altitude made the use of steam or horses for drawing cars impracticable. A resident solved the problem by the invention of the cable car, and the first one used in the United States was on the old Clay street line in San Francisco, and few improvements have been made in the original affair. Cable car lines were multiplied, until with the horse cars nearly every block in the city could be reached by one or the other of these conveyances. Now the more rapid electric car is taking the place of the others on some lines. By a system of transfers, not usual in other cities, one may go from one point to another, almost anywhere in the city, for one fare.
San Francisco has nearly always been remarkable for the extent and excellence of its manufacturing enterprises. It was so far from the established manufacturing centers when its history began that man's ingenuity and skill were taxed to their utmost extent to supply articles absolutely necessary in life's daily routine. Everything almost that was needed must be constructed here, and first came the manufacture of tools. In very many directions the skilled mechanics of the coast have no superiors anywhere. The Pacific Saw Manufacturing Company, of which Hon. N. W. Spaulding is at the head, has established a reputation for turning out reliable goods, both of all classes of saws and every kind, of cutting tools not attained by any other manufactory of its kind in the United States. The Union Iron Works may be mentioned because of the remarkably fine work performed in shipbuilding. The United States war ships San Francisco and Charleston and the harbor defence Monitor Monterey will be monuments to the skill and ability of Irwin M. Scott, and the grand capacity of the Union Iron Works, as long as they remain afloat, and for years afterward. It would require pages to give even a brief mention of the manufactories in operation in San Francisco. These grand producers of wealth turned out of their workshops during 1892 articles to the value of over ninetyfour millions of dollars - more than the value of all the merchandise which passed through the San Francisco custom house, both outgoing and incoming.
San Francisco has ninety-one school-houses of all grades, attended by 46,172 pupils, and expended in their support in 1892 $1,098,838. The fine climate of the city enables students to devote more time to study without weariness than in climates which vary from hot to cold. The standard of scholarship in all grades is high in consequence, and the benefits conferred are in excess of those obtainable in the same time elsewhere. These figures are exclusive of the large attendance upon the great number of excellent and high grade private schools.
No community in the world has produced so many persons of wealth who took pleasure in devoting a goodly share of what they possessed to benefiting the people. There are now thirty-five kindergarten schools maintained in San Francisco, with an attendance of 3,108. The growth of the admirable system has been more marked here than in any other city in the country, owing to the personal interest and generosity of citizens. Eighteen of t he thirty-five kindergartens are permanently endowed ; fifteen of them are memorial kindergartens. The first kindergartens of the kind in the world were the Leland Stanford Jr. memorial kindergartens, the first one of which was organized July 1, 1884. Since that time, and growing out of that seed germ, there have been scores of them planted all over the world. With a pledge of only $7.50 per month, the work began, in the heart of the Barbary coast, thirteen years ago, under the auspices of Mrs. Cooper's bible class. At the close of the first year there were two kindergartens, with 109 children, and total receipts of $1,805.70. Last year the total receipts were $43,731.90. During the thirteen years over 13,000 children have been trained. The late Senator Sharon gave fifty thousand dollars to found a playground in Golden Gate Park for the pleasure of the children of San Francisco. No point in this charming resort is patronized to the same extent as this - not even the music stand where two days in the week the best performers dispense music for the million. The Park has numberless attractions bestowed by generous citizens, some of whom are with the dead, and all for the gratification and refinement of the public taste. James Lick created an institution which adds to the achievements of astronomy, and has already advanced the grand column of heavenly discoveries. Besides, he endowed the Academy of Sciences, and established a people's free bath house. Others have been equally generous, and the end is not yet. Royally have the citizens of San Francisco been endowed with wealth, and royally have they dispensed it for the improvement of humanity.
The gifts named have been for the intellectual gratification of the masses. The generous have not manifested less care for the comfort and welfare of those in want, or poorly provided for. The Salvation Army has been made the almoner of hundreds of business men and society women, who are proud to give, but lack the time to hunt up those requiring aid. Through this generosity a place is provided where supper, a bath, lodging and breakfast, are furnished for ten cents. A great number of persons buy tickets by the hundreds or the thousands and instead of giving money to those asking alms, they give a ticket guaranteeing the holder the meals, the bath and the bed. Mr. Brown, desirous of doing something to benefit working girls, has established a place on Howard street where they can obtain a cup of tea or coffee, and any single dish of good palatable well cooked food for one cent. Of course this does not pay first cost, but the girls get a healthy lunch, retain their self-respect, and save pennies of which they have none too many. During January, 1893, an average of 140 girls per day were accommodated, and the deficiency which Mr. Brown had to make up out of his pocket was in the vicinity of $100 per month. More good could not possibly be accomplished for the same amount of money.
Facts similar to these might be recounted for hours. Only these will be given, and they are among the most unimportant. They indicate the tendency of the people to sympathize with and help one another. Very few of these acts of kindness are made public. No one suffers whose wants are generally known. The climate is not more genial and beneficent than the great hearts of San Francisco's people. They enjoy largely, and enjoy most when others are having a full share.
The necessity for improvements and additions to the harbor facilities of San Francisco has-long been recognized by the business community and the harbor commissioners. The dock charges were not sufficient to warrant any material change. The harbor is a State institution, and the legislature, at its last session, upon the recommendation of the harbor commissioners, submitted an act, to be voted upon by all those entitled to the franchise, authorizing the commissioners to issue bonds, to the extent of $500,000, par value, the money received from their sale to be used 'in improving the docks, and erecting such buildings as were found to be necessary. The authorization was endorsed, and plans and specifications have been accepted for a grand union depot into which all the street railroads, cable and horse, will deliver passengers for the ferries, and gather all who may arrive for the various points in the city. It will prove a great convenience, compared with the arrangements now in vogue. Other needed improvements are being consummated, and before the end of ] 893 the landing at San Francisco will be one of the most sightly and convenient in the United States, and will relieve the business community of much unnecessary trouble.
JAN JOAQUIN COUNTY is one of the original subdivisions of the State, and the local seat of government was established at Stockton, where it has remained. The name of the county originated with the Spanish lieutenant, Moraga, who christened the little river of that name in honor of Joachim, the traditional father of the Virgin Mary. From that it passed to the great valley, and thence to the county formed from its upper end. The county is composed almost completely of level plain, what hills it contains occupying the southern end of it.
Jedediah S. Smith and other trappers were in the valley as early as 1825, but Father Crespi, of the Monterey Mission, had been there in 1773. Then the San Joaquin valley was full of deer, elk, wild horses, bear and fowls. As high as fifteen grizzlies have been seen there at one time. The rivers were full of fish, and many beavers, which the trappers were searching for, inhabited the banks of every stream. The trapping companies that came to the great valley in 1832' found the most populous villages of Indians that they had ever beheld. The banks of the rivers were fairly bristling with villages containing from 50 to 100 wickiups, built of poles and thatched with rushes. The Indians lived sumptuously upon game, fish, wild seeds and berries, while their huts were red with the salmon that they were curing.
Late in the summer of the next year, 1833, those villages were utterly depopulated. Here and there a half dozen Indians were left, but at every village the skulls and remains were numbered by hundreds. Evidences of wholesale burials and immense funerals pyres were seen everywhere. Only one camp had any considerable number left, and in one night twenty of these died. They were stricken with smallpox, which was a disease unknown to them before, and for which their medicine men possessed no specific. Every tribe of Indians in California had at that time its " sweathouse " at each village. These houses were pits in the ground, covered with a conical roof in which a small aperture was left for the escape of smoke. A small entrance admitted the Indians, and it was tightly closed after them. In these dens a fire would be built upon the floor, the passage being closed the Indians danced furiously until in a reeking perspiration, and then they would dash to a stream of water near by and plunge in. This heroic treatment of the fever patients doubtless killed every one who tried it.
Unlike other American Indians, these never used trees or bark with which to build their canoes. Instead they used tule reed strongly lashed with strips of willow These boats were serviceable and very buoyant. These Indians for many years after the whites came in believed that the Great Spirit was still on their side. One tradition was that upon the coming of the pale face the sumnier showers, which had been regular and frequent, were stopped by the Great Spirit, so that the sterility of the land would drive the white man away, after which the rains would fall again.. They never figured much on artesian wells and irrigation canals.
The first immigrant party that came through the San Joaquin valley was Captain J. B. Bartelson's company of about thirty men. They came across the plains, and after arriving in the San Joaquin valley separated and spread out over the State. A Captain Weber formed a partnership with Guillermo Gulnac in 1842, and started various industries. Because of the Jatter's Mexican name Weber applied for a land grant through him of eleven square leagues of land in the vicinity of French Camp, in what is now San Joaquin county. Soon after the partnership was dissolved, and Weber became the owner of the land. Weber visited Sutter's Fort and hunted up an Indian chief, Jose Jesus, with whom he formed a lasting friendship and peace. Jose advised Weber to start his settlement at the place which is now Stockton, and in accordance he located upon the site. Jose agreed not only to a peace, but to help fight any Mexicans or Indians who should give trouble. As Jose was the terror of the Mexicans this alliance did much to assure success to the young town. The settlement was commenced about 1843. The location was particularly advantageous, as the hunters and trap, pers made French Camp their winter quarters, and they exchanged ammunition and blankets for furs. The application for land that Gulnac had filed was allowed in January, 1844. Captain Fremont passed through there in March of that year. In 184Y Weber, who had given his attention to his business in San Jose, decided that his settlement at Stockton's site was progressing too slowly. He sold out at San Jose and moved with a number of men, 200 horses and 4,000 head of cattle, to the new settlement. The little town thus finally started was called Tuleburg. The name was changed to Stockton in 1843 by Captain Weber to honor Commodore Eobert Stockton of the United States navy.
Early in 1848 news of the discovery of gold at Coloma came to the settlers on the San Joaquin. The fever struck every man in the county, and Captain "Weber organized a company and started a search at once in his own part of the State. He found gold before long on the Mokelumne river, and soon the region known as the Southern mines was flooded with men. Weber left workers on the creek named for him, and taught a lot of Indians how to prospect. These he sent into Calaveras, and they faithfully hunted out the precious metal and sent in splendid specimens and glowing reports. A large party was equipped at Tuleburg and started for the new " diggings." The importance of the new mines grew with astonishing rapidity. Weber decided that a town was a necessity. He went back to Tuleburg and founded Stockton at once. He then bought a small sloop called the Maria for $4,000, and established the first regular packet line between San Francisco and Stockton. The town grew like a mushroom. Hotels went up rapidly in 1849.
Of recent years the notion that San Joaquin was' fit only for a grazing county has been exploded. The county is rich now in agricultural productions. The lands which were too dry have been abundantly irrigated from the great rivers and from some of the finest artesian wells in the State. Hundreds of thousands of acres formerly relegated to the tules have been reclaimed, and have proved to be rich and productive.
The Stockton which started as a temporary camp so long ago is one of the most flourishing cities in the State. The whole county is prosperous and progressive, and the people are happy and contented,
No interior county in the State shows greater mate, rial progress for the year 1892 than San Joaquin. The building of the Tracy branch of the Southern Pacific Railroad has opened up a part of this county hitherto almost inaccessible during the rainy season. The opening of that line has had the effect that new railroads usually have of brightening up towns that had been slumbering for years. Tracy shows many signs of new and vigorous life. Its population has increased by half, its business has been doubled, and the village is dotted with new buildings.
Stockton now has a sewer system second to none, and it has been almost completed during the year. The main sewer and dumping station cost $35,000. The outlet pipe has been extended three miles to the San Joaquin river, and during the summer the sewerage is to be used in the irrigation of the Moss tract, which belongs to Sacramento Boggs of Colusa county. The pumps in the new station will handle the sewerage of a city of 100,000 inhabitants and have a capacity of pumping fourteen million gallons per day. Eighteen miles of lateral sewers have been laid at a cost of $44,000. The city has a separate system of rainwater sewers under construction, and during the year five miles of this sewer was laid at an approximate cost of $5,000.
MONO COUNTY was organizedin 1861, and is a long, narrow belt of territory on the eastern slope of the Sierra Nevada mountains. Bridgeport is its county-seat. It was tliought to contain rich deposits of silver, and gold placers of no great extent were worked for a time by the miners from Truckee and Virginia City. The Bodie excitement created towns and cities, but on its subsidence these were depopulated. However, little is now really known of the mineral resources of Mono county. Scarcely any of it is fit for agriculture, and it ought to have some appropriate place in the economy of nature, and when thoroughly explored may develop bonanzas. Traces of zinc, copper, iron, jasper, chalcedony, and other metals and stones have been found, and the county contains a great deal of valuable timber.
Mono lake is situated in the center of the county, and is about fifteen miles long by ten miles wide, its waters being a somewhat unusual compound, various chemical substances being found in solution in them. The great bluffs and rocky ravines of the Sierra come almost to the western shore of the lake, while upon the eastern side salt deposits and lines of driftwood mark the plain, showing very distinctly what were the former more extensive shores of this sheet of water. Upon the bluffs of the western side are water-marks which make it seem very probable that the waters were once almost a thousand feet above their present elevation, spreading out over the plains to the east to form a great inland sea. The lake receives a number of small streams, but is without a perceptible outlet. In picturesque variety and grandeur the scenery in the mountainous region of this county surpasses many of the celebrated views in the Alps.
SANTA CLARA COUNTY was one of the original subdivisions of the State, and contained more territory than now, as a portion was given to both Alameda and Contra Costa counties in fixing their boundaries. In January, 1777, Father Thomas de la Pena founded the Mission of Santa Clara, having come from San Diego for that purpose, and to spread the faith among the Indians. The name was chosen by Padre Thomas in honor of Saint Clara, child of the pious mother Hortalana, whose prayers were answered by a luminous glow, in token of which the child was christened Clara, signifying the feminine of light.
When the padres came to Santa Clara no other whites had ever seen the country. It was very beautiful then, as it still is. The natives were very numerous, and thousands were converted, forcibly as usual, in that same year, 1777. That was not the San Jose of to-day. The first site chosen was too near the river, which overflowed in the winter, to the extreme discomfort of the few residents. Subsequently they moved, having obtained permission from Spain, and that site was in the midst of the " Garden City " that this generation knows.
There was little or no interruption to the progress of the Santa Clara mission for many years. It was not long after it settled down to its calm routine before the hills about were overrun with horses, cattle and sheep. Many small industries were also started, in which the natives performed the labor after having been instructed. In 1812 a severe earthquake cracked the main building badly. Another shook in 1822 rendered it unsafe, and extensive repairs were necessary. Although Mexican independence had been established, and the regime of the missions had been much altered, so that in fact they were soon upon the brink of destruction, still in 1825 a new site was selected and a new churcli erected. The original building has long since gone to decay and ruin. The prosperity of the Santa Clara mission was hardly second to any in the State. In 1823, even after some reverses, the mission had 22 iOO calves to brand as increase to the herd. By 1825 there were over 74,200 head of cattle on their ranges, 407 yoke of oxen, 82,500 sheep, 1,890 horses broken to saddle, 4,230 brood mares, 725 mules and 1,000 Logs. Truly a rich possession. At that time there was 1,800 Indians at the mission. They attended to all of the vast labor necessary to keep it in operation.
The gold excitement which followed the declaration of peace left this country, like other non-mineral localities, deserted. However, in 1849 interest was revived in the neighborhood of San Jose. The constitutional convention which had convened at Monterey September 1, 1849, named that city as the State capital. December 15, 1849, the first legislature met in that city. There was not adequate room in the town for the gathering, and the two branches of the legislature had to meet in different houses. All of the elected Senators and Assemblymen did not appear, many remaining at the mines. The legislature had already convened when a bill was introduced to remove everything to Monterey. It was defeated. In April a splendid offer from General Vallejo, who wanted the capital at the town of Benicia, startled the San Jose people. A bitter rivalry broke out at once, and offers and counter offers were made as inducements. Members were dissatisfied with San Jose, and in 1851 she lost the capital, which Benicia secured. In 1854 it looked as if San Jose would win again, as a supreme court decision gave her the capital. This decision was soon overruled, and Sacramento secured the prize for all time.
Santa Clara county Is adapted to the production of all the fruits of the semi-tropics. There is not a variety which cannot be found here in abundance, yielding rich returns to the growers. So productive is the soil, so congenial is the climate, that new orchard homes are constantly being established, and grain farming is fast becoming unknown. Of prunes alone during the year 1892, there were produced in Santa Clara county 20,000,000 pounds, of which over 17,000,000 pounds went directly to the Eastern markets, the remainder supplying the local and San Francisco demand. Of otlier dried fruits over 5,000,000 pounds were shipped, while 15,656,675 pounds of green fruits were sent to the East and over 20,000,000 pounds used by the canneries and for local consumption. There were shipped by the Southern Pacific railroad 73,875,925 pounds of green and dried fruits and other ranch products. For the fruit the highest prices known for years was obtained.
One feature which distinguishes the year 1892 from others is that of the subdivision of large tracts of land into small orchard homes of ten and twenty acres. While there is proportionately more land devoted to fruit growing in this section than in any other county of the State, there are yet some large ranches ; but the movement now under way bids fair to dispose of all of these.
STANISLAUS COUNTY was formed from Toulumne county in April, 185i. Its formation tiad been contested by tiie Terry faction under the belief that it would, in some way, aid the political fortunes of Senator Broderick, afterwards killed by David S. Terry. Empire City was at first the seat of local government, but later it passed to La Grange, a rival town. In 1860 the legislature annexed to Stanislaus a large slice from San Joaquin county, including Knight's Landing, a rapidly growing town, which obtained the honor from La Grange. In 1870 the Southern Pacific Company commenced work on its line through the San Joaquin valley, which it called the Visalia division. A new town was laid out on the road, the people of Paradise and Toulumne removing their houses bodily to the new place, which was called Modesto, and in 1871 this thriving place won the prize after a spirited contest, and soon became the most prosperous and thriving town in the county.
One of the first settlements in the county was that of French Bar or La Grange, as it soon came to be called. Rich mines were discovered here which were first worked by Frenchmen, whence the name. Several thousand people settled here, and the young city was both lively and prosperous. The years 1854 and 1855 were seasons of great excitement over the discovery of rich placers along the river at this point. Many foreigners settled here, and they were so strong that they for awhile successfully defied the law providing for the collection of a mining tax from foreigners. They were brought to their senses, however, by the authorities.
In the spring of 1849 Captain Knight pitched his tent on the bank of the Stanislaus river, in the edge of the foothills, and established a ferry across that stream for the accommodation of the miners who were pouring into the mines. As Knight's Ferry the place became known, and it bears the name to the present time. Knight was a comrade of Fremont, and had accompanied him on his various exploring trips, finally settling here, where he remained until his death, which occurred in a few years. Captain John Dent succeeded Knight in the ownership of the Ferry and the place was frequently known as Dentville. It was a sister of Captain Dent whom General Grant married, and that individual, while a captain in the regular army, once spent some time here, in the summer of 1854, while en route to the post in the northern part of the State to which he had been appointed.
Hill's Ferry is another of the settlements of the early days which has survived the exigencies of the mining excitement and still remains as a center of considerable trade. This town was laid out on the Orestimba ranch, one of the five Spanish grants in Stanislaus county, and was for a long time the head of navigation on the San Joaquin river, though light draft vessels have gone considerably farther up the stream in times of high water.
Three branches of the Southern Pacific Eailroad traverse the county, assuring the adequate transportation facilities that will be demanded when in the course of a few years the diversified products of a soil enriched by irrigation shall find their way in great volume to the markets of the world. Stanislaus is destined to loose her fame, as the banner wheat-producing county of the State, to attain in due time a new and greater fame as the richest, acre for acre, of the agricultural and horticultural counties.
Newman, on the west side branch of the Southern Pacific Railroad, is another prospering town. During last year a sixteen-thousand-doUar hotel has been erected there, and the Odd Fellows recently dedicated an eight-thousand-dollar structure. Other buildings aggregating a cost of $10,000 have been built in Newman during the year.
Oakdale, on the branch railroad between Stockton and Merced, ranks second to Modesto in importance It is a beautiful lively town, in the center of a large district, destined to be famous for horticultural and agricultural productions. Public improvements aggregating many thousand dollars have been made during 1892, and the Oakdale canal and irrigation system has virtually been completed, promising new life and prosperity for the new and succeeding years.
The completion of the west-side branch of the Southern Pacific railroad has given existence to half a dozen new settlements along the line, and on the east side two new settlements have sprung up. The towns of Grayson, Knight's Ferry, La Grange, Crow's Landing, Turlock, Montpelier, Ceres, Waterford, the settlements of Westport, Horr's ranch, Hickman, Westley and others, have made progress during the year, and none have lost ground.
TOULUMNE COUNTY was organized by the first legislature, and Stewart, formerly Sonorian camp, was designated as the seat of government. Her earliest story began with the first mining settlement, as prior to that her only visitors were the few hunters and trappers who happened across her territory before any Americans thought of making their homes on the Pacific coast. The Woods party, who came in the early summer of 1848, were Toulumne's first permanent occupants. They settled on the banks of a stream and named it Woods creek. These first comers discovered gold in paying quantities and decided to stay. Very soon afterward a party of Mexicans came to Toulumne and located the Sonorian camp, afterward called Stewart and then Sonorian. Gold being found everywhere and in large nuggets, a population, mixed and rough, poured in. Toulumne became suddenly the headquarters of the famous southern mines. Immigration became so rapid that there were soon more mining camps in this section than could be found in a like area anywhere in California. The richness of the diggings was unprecedented.
The towns that sprang up were generally named for their first settlers. Jamestown on Woods creek was named for Colonel James, who came from San Francisco in 184:8. Jacksonville was thus named for Colonel Jackson, its first storekeeper. There was a town called Chinese Camp for its Mongolians. Yankee Hill was a nugget town settled by men from " way down East." Then there were Peppermint Gulch, Mountain Brow, Garotte, Big Oak Flat, Columbia, and a number of others with titles peculiar to mining nomenclature. Every camp was full of gold, and there was a preponderance of bad men and worse whisky. Toulumne was exceedingly rich, but the times were sadl}' out of joint in a moral sense.
The bitterness of feeling entertained by the Mexicans and Spanish for everything American, which had started with the war with Mexico, had not died out in 1849. Peruvians, Chileans, and all nations speaking the same tongue, combined in many things against the Yankees. Murders were of frequent occurrence. Germans, Austrians, French and Australians, called " Sidney ducks," grew disaffected. Questions of expelling all foreigners were fully discussed. Finally in 1850 a " foreign miner's tax " was passed by the legislature, imposing an impost of $20 a month on all foreign miners. The most intense excitement followed the first attempt to collect the tax. Eiots were imminent everywhere. The foreigners combined and their orators inflamed them with speeches. The American miners assembled their forces and armed themselves. A body of several hundred formidable-looking miners marched into Sonora and almost proclaimed martial law. These, with the sheriff and the tax collector, started through the camps. Mexicans, Spanish, Dutch, French, everybody fled before them. Homes were dismantled, mines abandoned and towns depopulated. Hundreds of the foreigners went away from the country entirely. Others spread out over the county and commenced careers of outlawry that kept peaceful people in constant terror. Many robberies and murders were committed in revenge by these ostracised foreigners, and innocent people were frequently the victims.
The conditions of law and society rapidly improved in Toulumne after 1851. The mines were still pouring out immense treasures and the class of men who worked them were still very rough, but the courts were beginning to be well established ; schools started everywhere, wise and energetic citizens came in, and a great variety of enterprises were inaugurated.
Toulumne's progress during the past year has been slow, but very substantial. There has been a general revival of interest in mining properties, which means prosperity and a general and direct benefit to the county and her people. Many mines are now being prospected and thoroughly examined by capitalists from abroad, with favorable outlook to speedy and more systematic working. The progress made in mining is necessarily slow, but still progressive, when the vast sums of money advanced in ascertaining and determining the character of mining properties are considered. As a notable instance of the progression in mining matters may be cited the Kawhide mine, situated seven miles west of Sonora, on the mother lode. On this mine during the past few months there has been erected a forty-stamp quartz mill, with all the necessary buildings for the proper handling of ores, causing the outlay of an enormous sum, which the character of the ore, and the excessive quantity fully justified. This mine being an approved success, greatly enhances the value of any adjoining claims, in which prominent men of San Francisco are interested, who are bound to realize handsomely on their properties by the progress and thorough development made on the Eawhide. Many mining properties abandoned beca,use of mismanagement or lack of means to properly work them have been taken hold of by men of resources, and the spirit of progress is being exhibited to a degree not witnessed in these camps for many years. The situation of the mining interests the past 3'ear has been bright indeed ; capital, energy and push are turning the wheel of fortune here, and a golden harvest is being garnered.
The Columbia Marble Works, which have been for many years idle, were reopened last year, and the justly celebrated marble, some of which appears prominently in the construction of the Palace Hotel in San Francisco, is being removed from the extensive quarry in large quantities and shipped to the larger cities of the United States.
The people are interesting themselves to a greater extent than ever before in agricultural pursuits; Sonora now having a first-class flouring mill, which affords a market for the cereal produce, has given new life to the farming industry and more land than in any previous season is being brought under cultivation. That the people of this county are thriving, prospering and progressing is certainly an evident fact. The greatest sign of progress is improvement, and since last year the improvements are many and great, hence much progress. Many newly erected cottages throughout the county modestly speak of quiet prosperity.
MARIPOSA is another of the original subdivisions of the State, and it comprised, when formed, almost an entire third of California. The name is the Spanish for butterfly, and was bestowed upon the section by the great number of these insects of variegated colors seen there by the early settlers. In 1853 San Bernardino county was segregated, followed in 1855 by Merced county. The first county seat was Agua Fria, now depopulated and its place taken by the thriving town of Mariposa.
The region was first invaded by the miners in 1849, and one J. D. Savage established a trading-post there. General Fremont also settled there at an early date, and began quartz mining on the famous Mariposa grant. As long as the mines paid well Mariposa was prosperous, and thriving towns sprang up in various sections. Among these were Hornitos, Bear Yalley, Princeton, and a great number of others, of which only the names remain. ,
The principal fame of Mariposa county since the decadence of the mines is derived from the presence within her boundaries of that great natural wonder, the Yosemite Yalley. This valley was first visited by white men in the spring of 1851, in pursuit of hostile Indians. In December, 1850, and January, 1851, the Indians went on the war path and murdered the whites wherever found. A small force of militia took the field against them and soon subdued all except a large party, which took refuge in the depths of the mountains in a valley said to be inaccessible by whites. But the volunteers followed them to their retreat, penetrated the Yosemite Yalley and captured the hostiles. The members of the invading party were struck with the magnificent scenery of the valley and told of it on their return, but it was ten years or more before anything was done toward opening the valley or drawing public attention to it.
Mariposa, although formerly thought to be principally a mining county, has of late years shown a meritorious record as a fruit-producing region. The mild climate of the valleys and lower foot-hills renders it peculiarly adapted to the production of grapes, oranges, figs, peaches, apricots, prunes, olives and lemons, while the higher belts, with their mountainous soil and sharp frosts, produce apples and pears which command the highest prices paid in the city markets. An experiment in raisin-growing, made by C. L. Mast, of Horseshoe Bend, proved to be an unqualified success. He packed a good yield of white Muscats and seedless Sultanas in 1892, which, for size and richness, are equal to those produced anywhere in California. Olive oil of a clear, beautiful quality has been manufactured in small quantities here for three years. Olive culture was at first deemed an uncertain experiment in this county, but it was found that the trees produced berries at an early age in these sheltered valleys. Oranges grown here are of a deep yellow color ; sweet, juicy, and very fine-fibered.
No important steps toward disposing of the magnificent timber in this county have as yet been taken, but a railroad must soon pierce the valuable forests of sugar pine, cedar and yellow pine, which are not surpassed elsewhere in the State. A little work in the way of building dams for the storage of water has been undertaken in the last year, and unlimited benefit could be accomplished were more work in this line completed. The free wagon road from Mariposa to the Yosemite valley will undoubtedly be built during 1893. One or two other roads of importance will also be constructed this year.
Mining has received a little impetus during the past year. In the northwest portion of the county the Red Cloud and Southerland mines are working steadily and yielding handsome profits, while a number of smaller mines in the same neighborhood are paj'ing well. Near Mariposa city only one mine of any importance is being worked, although many prospectors are making wages in the hills and gulches. The Alabama, owned by the Ward Brothers, is a valuable mine, and the tunnel, in now about 1,000 feet, shows an abundance of good ore. Several fine veins of good marble have been discovered recently. Altogether the prospects of Mariposa appear really better and on a more substantial basis than for many years past.
SANTA CRUZ COUNTY was organized in 1850, and the county seat located at Santa Cruz. In 1770 Father Juniperro Serra founded the mission of Monterey. Twenty-two years after that the mission of Santa Cruz was established by Fathers Salazar and Lopez. The missions at Santa Clara, San Francisco and Monterey, being the nearest, contributed help and provisions to the new church. The Carmel mission sent seven mules, and the San Francisco mission five pair of oxen. Other missions sent what seemed appropriate. There were a great many Indians about the country, and thousands of converts were made. The cattle mcreased very rapidly until large herds roamed in the mountains roundabout. The Santa Cruz mission was very prosperous until about 1830, and a few years later when all of the work that the Catholics had done was destroyed by the Government. The Indians wlio were forced into the mission, and to adopt a different religion and habits, were like all other California natives, inasmuch as they resented the innovation upon their rights and liberties. In the year 1812 they lured Father Quintana out into the orchard one night and hanged him. They then returned the body to his bed, where it was soon found. The perpetrators were not discovered for many years and were not punished then. Santa Cruz has never had any mining excitement of her own. The first bituminous rpck pavement in California was laid there, and from rock mined in her own quarries. The material was so good and abundant that it could be mined cheaply, and sold so low that that from other points had diflBculty in competing with it. Large amounts have been used on San Francisco streets and side-walks and shipped to other points, even as far east as Denver. The supply seems to be unlimited.
The Watsonville beet sugar factory paid out $iOO,000 in 1892 for beets and wages, and the success of that enterprise is assured. The fruit interests of the county are prosperous, and more acres are being planted to fruits and vines. The leather, lime, wine and other industries are all successful. The State encampment of National Guards has heretofore been held at Santa Cruz, and this attracts great numbers of people. More are induced to visit the healthy city by the safe and pleasant surf bathing for which the place is noted. The little county is wealthy and promising.
MERCED COUNTY was formed from a part of Mariposa in 1855. Like nearly all the original subdivisions of the State, and all of the counties created since, the county seat question was not settled without contest. So many places in each subdivision look upon the county seat as little less desirable than a rich gold mine. The county takes its name from its principal river. Lieutenant Moraga, with a troop of Spanish, soldiers, had been traveling over the arid plains until the tongues of men and animals were swollen, the eyesight blurred and the blood fevered. They thought they had Jaeen doomed to death, when they came upon this little stream, which was hidden by the tules on its bank. It was hailed as a gift from a merciful God, and became Mercy or Merced river. The contest in Merced was settled by the selection of the town of Merced, where it is almost certain to remain.
Merced has been the home of great grain fields. It is now blessed with about the best irrigating system in the country, and has started in on the money-making plan of dividing up the large ranches, and inducing thrifty settlers to try their fortunes at fruit growing. Already the Crocker-Hufifman Land and Water Company has three or four colonies well under way, and the grandest results are manifest. Merced being the nearest point to San Francisco where land with perpetual water rights is obtainable, the lands are being purchased for fruits. Figs, olives, oranges, lemons, apricots, peaches, pears, jjrunes, and indeed, all deciduous and citrus fruits grow here to perfection. When about ten times the profit can be obtained from an acre in fruit over an acre in wheat, it is not strange that the large ranches are being divided up. It is population in this country that produces the wealth, and the thrifty and industrious tiller of ten acres in fruit is as valuable to the community as the tiller of one hundred acres in grain. He is more so, because he is setting an example to those anxious for easy and comfortable lives.
MONTEREY COUNTY was one of the first described by metes and bounds by the legislature in 1850, and the county seat established at Monterey, which had been the capital of Alta California, under the Mexican regime. The name is composed of two words, monte and rey, and literally translated means " king of the forest." The harbor and county were so named in honor of Count Monterey, who fitted out three small vessels, and put them in charge of Don Sebastian Yizcaino in 1599 with instructions to seize every point of interest and value on this coast in the name of Phillip III. of Spain. He visited various points, including San Diego, and on the 'l6th of December, 1602, sailed into the little harbor which he called M<}nterey, and cast anchor near the site of the present town. Yizcaino remained at Monterey until the 3d of the following January, when he sailed away. Then followed one hundred and sixty years of silence, during which time no record speaks of this region.
In 1773 a great zeal for missionary work was manifested among the Mexican Padres, and an earnest desire to civilize and Christianize the inhabitants of the regions north. Exploring and missionary parties were immediately fitted out, one going by land, and the other by sea. They arrived at San Diego nearly at the same time, and the first mission of California was founded on the 16th of July, 1769. But their zeal was too great to allow them to wait at the southernmost border of the promised land, and they soon started for the north. They had read of the discovery and naming of the bay Monterey by Yizcaino, and the long lost bay was their objective point. The expedition left San Diego July 14, 1769, and was composed of about eighty soldiers, several officers, fifteen Christian Indians and Fathers Crespi and Gomez. It was late in September when they reached the bay they were in search of, but they did not know it. The only excuse that can be offered for their not being able to recognize it from Vizcaino's description is that he wrote from the standpoint of one entering the harbor, while they were looking upon the bay from an inland point. The party moved northward and did not stop until they reached the Golden Gate itself. They walked along the shores of the bay and surveyed it from the top of the neighboring hills, and being taken with the spot, it was named after St. Francis de Assisi. They soon marched south again and repassed the bay of Monterey without knowing it to be the one they were in search of, and thinking that the harbor described by Vizcaino might be by this time filled with sand, they proceeded to San Diego, where they arrived on the 24th of January, 1770.
In the same year another search party was fitted out. It was in two divisions, one to go by water and the other by land. This time they were successful, both reaching and recognizing the bay about the same time. On the 3d of June, 1770, they again took possession of it in the name of the king of Spain. On the same day Father Junipero began his mission by erecting a cross, hanging bells from a tree, and saying mass under the same venerable rock where Vizcaino's party celebrated it in 1602, one hundred and sixty-eight years before.
The missions were designed for the civilization and conversion of the Indians. The latter were instructed in the mysteries of religion ( so far as they could comprehend them) and the arts of peace. The instruction of the savages in agriculture and manufactures, as well as prayers and elementary education, was the padre's business. The Indians were at first very shy of the newcomers, but after a time they began to cluster around the fathers and finally their old habits and manners of living were tlirown off, and they contented themselves with the quiet Jife and somewhat laborious duties of the missions. It must be remembered that the civilization of the California Indian was no easy task. He had lived without labor and existed for naught save his ease and pleasure. His chief delight was the satisfying of his appetite and the best portions of his life were spent in sleeping and dancing, while in the temperate California climate wild fruits and nuts, on which he lived, grew in great abundance. But the benefits of civilization gradually dawned upon the homeless savage, and he soon took to the new life with surprising whole-heartedness, and in a short time the mission of San Carlos de Monterey was in a flourishing condition.
On July 14, 1771, the mission of San Antonio was established about twelve miles south of Soledad, in Monterey county. The buildings were closed in a square 1,200 feet on each side and walled with adobes. The stream on the banks of which the mission was located was conducted in paved trenches twenty miles for the purpose of irrigation, and large crops rewarded the husbandry of the Indians and the padres. In 1822, this mission owned 52,800 head of cattle, 1,800 tame horses, 3,000 mares, 500 yoke of working oxen, 600 mules, 48,000 sheep and 1,000 swine. This mission on its secularization fell into the hands of an administrator who neglected its farms, drove off its cattle and left the Indians to starve.
The mission of Soledad was founded October 9, 1791, and was exceedingly prosperous. In 1794, the mission of San Juan Bautista sprung into existence and did a great deal toward benefiting the poor savage. After all the good these holy fathers did they were destined to be driven, with their flocks, out of the homes they had founded and cherished. In 1813, by an act of the Spanish Cortez, and again in 1828, the extinction of the missions was ordered In 1833, the Mexican Congress sanctioned the order, and in 1845 the overthrow of the missions was complete.
The mining interests have received undivided attention during the past year. Immense deposits of limestone have been opened on the California mountains. Gold and silver have been discovered in some of the canyons, and although gold is not found in paying quantities, a little research might develop results which would prove highly profitable. The Los Burros gold mines in the southwestern extremity of the county are rapidly coming into prominence, and alone will tend to prove that this county is not destitute of valuable mineral deposits. In Cholame valley, in the southern part of the county, mines of asphaltum, copper and gypsum have been opened, and petroleum in large quantities, while abundant deposits of black oxide of manganese have been discovered . Coal mines have been opened in several portions of the county, the most important of these being that of the Carmelo Land and Coal Company, whose mines and works are located at Carmelo, five miles south of Monterey and two miles from deep water on Carmel bay. The company, which is composed of San Francisco and local capitalists, have sunk two shafts of 800 and 500 feet depth respectively, built hoisting works with a capacity of sixty tons per hour, with coal bunkers and chutes, and are shipping a grade of coal equal to Wellington. The company is now preparing to run a 1,000foot tunnel to crosscut a ledge of exceptionally good bituminous coal. With the completion of this tunnel, the output of the mine will be greatly increased. Deposits of bituminous rock have been discovered, and preparations are being made to handle the product of the extensive beds of that article, now greatly in demand for street paving.
An industry which gives promise of becoming far greater is that of shipping the pure white beach sand, which abounds in inexhaustible quantities near Monterey, to the glass factories of San Francisco. Carloads are shipped daily, and yet nature replenishes her stock quicker than the hand of man can diminish it.
Glancing back upon the changes wrought in the past twelve months, one will readily perceive that Monterey county has undergone a most radical change. The cities, towns, and county at large show a greater amount of improvement the past year than that which has characterized the preceding decade. New towns have risen where heretofore was but a barren waste ; its cities have assumed metropolitan aspects, and what previously had been desolate mountain tracts, covered with well-nigh impenetrable timber and brush, are now cleared, and green fields and budding trees have taken the place of former desolation, while the tidy farm houses evince signs of prosperity and contentment.
SAN BENITO COUNTY was not organized until 1874, when it was carved out of Monterey, with 200,000 acres additional from Merced county some time later. It owes its existence to the policy of cutting up large grants or ranches, which acknowledged only one lord and master, and making out of them fit homes for hundreds of families.
The soil of San Benito county claims the honor of having sustained the first American flag of conquest ever unfurled to a California breeze. The facts on which this claim is based are as follows : In March, 1846, General Fremont arrived at San Juan, after a long and tedious march from the Missouri river westward. He had received the consent of General Castro, the Mexican governor, to halt there and rest his weary troops. But General Castro, for some reason, suddenly revoked his permission and ordered Fremont to leave the territory at once. The answer was returned that the American army must have time to lay in a stock of provisions and make other preparations, which would require some time, before leaving.
Castro at once organized a small band of mounted troops and proceeded to San Juan to drive out tlie audacious "pathfinder." Fremont heard of Castro's intentions and withdrew his army from the valley, taking up a position on Gabilan, or Fremont's peak, as it is often and more appropriately called, which overlooks the towns of HoUister and San Juan. Here he threw up fortifications, and, planting a flag-staff, defiantly raised the American flag in the latter part of March, 1846. Castro and his command manoeuvred for some time at the foot of the mountain, but did not dare to attack Fremont's forces, which were safely ensconced near the top of the peak. The Mexicans were armed with riatas and lances, and knowing that these weapons were inferior to those of the Americans, Castro finally concluded to withdraw his command.
After Castro's withdrawal Fremont broke camp and marched through Bear and Panoche valleys toward the San Joaquin, intending to march to the Oregon line. On his way he received intelligence that a state of war had been declared between the United States and Mexico, and immediately returned and was soon taking an active part in the conquest of California.
At that time the inhabitants belonged to the various Indian tribes, the hills were infested with grizzlies and the valleys were full of antelope and deer. The old mission of San Juan, which had been founded in 1797, was the only vanguard of the advancing civilization. The value of our fertile valleys and productive hills was then unknown, and a sleepy race in somnolent ease took without question what nature unaided furnished.
San Benito now has a population of about 8,000. Although one of the youngest, it is one of the most prosperous counties in the State. The soil is marvellously fertile, while the excellence of the climate is proverbial. San Benito county is virtually a new and undeveloped country as comjiared with many of the other counties of the State, and offers splendid inducements to home seekers.
FRESNO became a county by itself in 1856. It had theretofore been a part of Mariposa county. The earlier explorers and settlers in Fresno and the San Joaquin valley began to arrive about 1844. David Kelsey settled in that year at French Camp with his wife and two children. He had a swivel gun that General Sutter had given him, and he used to fire it every night at sunset to frighten off anj?prowling Indians who might be near. In April of 1844 Fremont visited Fresno's territory in his march of exploration. In 1851 Coarse Gold gulch, in what is now Fresno county, was a prominent camp. In October, 1851, Coarse Gold was almost deserted, owing to a war which the Indians threatened. In the spring of next year many returned and business prospered. Settlers flocked in at a lively rate in the next few succeeding years and many small towns were started.
The final boundaries between Fresno and surrounding counties were not settled until 1873. The eastern boundary now is the main range of the Sierra Nevada mountains. At that place the Sierras reach their greatest altitude, culminating in Mount Whitney, the loftiest peak within the United States, not counting Alaska. On the west the boundary is in a spur of the coast range, in which mountains the famous New Idria quicksilver mine, one of the most valuable in the world, was discovered, in 1856.
Mining commenced in Fresno very soon after the great gold rush of 1849. Placer mining was engaged in extensively in what were called the Southern mines at an early date. Quartz mining for both gold and silver has brought in much money to miners all over Fresno. Coal and quicksilver also make valuable claims. Fresno counts considerably upon its natural wonders in geveral discoveries of fossil remains. Of the fossils, the remains of mammoths and whales are the most important. Remains of one mammoth were unearthed by miners as early as 1858. There are several petrified trees of large proportions ; one of which seems to bear evidence of having been cut down with a sharp-edged tool before turning to stone.
Irrigation has worked wonders for Fresno. Its average atmosphere was hot and dry, with occasional blistering winds in the summer time which were destructive to vegetation, and nearly so to life. These hot, dry seasons were exactly what was wanted for curing raisins most economically if the raisin grape could be produced, and a supply of water has solved that problem. The volume of water in Kings and San Joaquin rivers aggregated enough to thoroughly irrigate every arable acre in Fresno county, and Avith canals and ditches its application to the lands where and when needed was found practicable.
Then came the inauguration of the colony system. That was the wisest move made, and has added several thousand industrious and prosperous citizens to Fresno's population. There are still several hundred thousand acres to be subdivided, but the work will go on until the last large ranch has been swallowed up by numbers of small, well tilled vineyards and orchards.
INYO COUNTY was organized in 1866, with Independence as the county seat. It is a region of wonderful contrasts, of Arctic cold, and a heat that would paralyze almost anything that lives; of valleys of great fertility, and a sink so sterile that it has gained the title of Death's valley ; of high mountains and a mysterious depression hundreds of feet below the level of the sea.
There are mines of gold, silver and lead being worked in Inyo, but they are not yielding large amounts. No one can safely predict what exploration may discover in the mountains surrounding Death's valley. There are three important industries which have been suflBciently developed to fix their immense value. The Inyo Development Company is manufacturing several thousand tons of soda annually by evaporating the water from Owen's lake. This is worth $33 per ton. The Saline Valley Borax Company produces fifty tons of borax monthly, worth $145 per ton. The supply is inexhaustible. The Inyo Marble Company is producing a marble which has no equal anywhere. A few samples would convince anyone with an eye to beauty in blending of colors of the futility of any artist trying to rival the Great Master in delicate and chaste work. The quarries turn out pure white, and every color that was ever seen on canvas or in nature. Great slabs can be obtained without speck or flaw, and it is so strong that it can be sawed into sheets as thin as pasteboard, and vases turned from it no thicker than fine porcelain.
Besides these mines of wealth which are being introduced to the attention of people on the coast and in the east, there are half a million acres of land in Owen's valley equal to the best in the State for the production of every kind of semitropic fruit. Inyo is not to be despised. "Water can be turned into her fertile valleys and then she will take her place among the most prosperous communities in the State.
TULARE COUNTY was organized in 1854, from territory taken from Mariposa and the county seat established at Visalia. It is the sixth county in size in the State. Her great fertile valleys are among the largest in this State of great things, and her mountains, which include Mount Whitney, rank among the highest in America. Her wheat fields are great; her irrigation canals are great ; her herds of sheep and cattle are great ; her products of fruits and vines are great, her lumbering interests are great, and she is great in everything but evidences of poverty and want.
The first settlement by the whites in the county is credited to Campbell, Pool & Co., who opened a ferry on King's river in the spring of 1852. Later in the same year N. Vice, a Texan bear-hunter, and one O'Neil, came to the present site of Visalia and la,id out the town, which was named for Yice. There were hardly any but Indian inhabitants in the valleys and hills when Vice and his partner came. They must have done some advertising, for in less than a month there were sixty white inhabitants in the young town. The immense advantages of the county were made known and population poured in. Prosperous ranches were started everywhere in the hills. Other towns grew in various localities almost as fast as Visalia. Tulare never furnished any mining excitement to the State. It was her wonderful fertility that made her populous, and subsequently made her the largest grainproducing county in California, the land of immensity. The county contains 6,406 square miles of surface, or about 4,099,440 acres. Of this at least 2,000,000 acres are cultivable. There are about 20,000 acres of tule lands bordering upon Tulare lake. The balance of the land is mountainous. The foothill lands are of great value, as it is upon them that the citrus fruits thrive to the best advantage. The Sierra Nevada mountains in Tulare average 10,000 to 12,000 feet in height. Lofty peaks and tremendously deep gorges make the mountains extremely rugged. Whitney, which overtops the rest, is 15,056 feet high. Kesearches of later years have developed minerals in great variety in Tulare. Some gold deposits exist up in the Kaweah region, but the approaches are so nearly inaccessible that the deposits are of little value. Other metals and minerals also exist, chief iimong which are iron, lead, copper, antimony, coal and fine marble.
The wonders accomplished in agriculture have contributed more than anything else to bring Tulare into prominence. The region north of Tulare lake probably shows the greatest development in large irrigation enterprises. A branch of Kaweah river, called Cross creek, furnishes a tremendous lot of water for this reo-ion, named Lucerne vale. Altogether there are seven canals in that portion, summing up 265 miles in length, and with an aggregate capacity of 1,300 cubic feet of water per second. Other irrigation districts, embracing thousands of acres, are established all over the county, and there is an abundance of water for them all. A large number of farms are irrigated by artesian wells. The first well was bored by the railroad company in 1870, at Tipton. They struck a good flow at 310 feet, and used the water to irrigate forty acres of trees. Some of the later wells are capable of irrigating several hundred acres. A few years ago the grain of hundreds of thousands of acres required greater facility of manipulation. It was a Tulare farmer who first applied steam contrivances successfully to grain fields. By his method the ground is plowed, harrowed and seeded by steam. Machines are kept going night and day. About ninety acres is a good day's worli. In harvesting, a steam traction engine runs the combined harvester and thresher over the fields, reaping easily 100 acres in a day, and depositing the saclied grain in its path. The winterless climate of Tulare long ago marked it as being simply perfection for stock-raising. Cattle, horses, sheep and hogs multiply rapidly there under the best conditions, and the herds are now very large.
Year by year the doubters as to the benefits to be derived from the use of surface water on any crop that it will pay to plant, are becoming converted to the belief that irrigation is a greater discovery than gold. The little streams of water not only wet the soil, but they carry to the millions of rootlets exactly the elements they require to produce a vigorous growth and an abundant fruitage. Tulareans are observant, and a fact as prominent as this has become apparent on every character of soil, and for every kind of fruit, vine and cereal, has converted them to water users - confirmed irrigationists. This being the case, many hundreds of miles of new canals and distributing ditches were built during the year 1892, and tens of thousands of acres of land hitherto dry have been brought under irrigation. Among other ventures of the kind that of the Tulare irrigation district stands foremost. A new system of works, whereby 50,000 acres will be supplied with water, has been completed at a cost of $500,000, and it will result in more than doubhng the ordinary product of those acres the coming year. Other enterprises of the kind are under way, notably at Tipton and on Lower Tule river. Alta district, in the northern portion of the county, has added largely to its already extensive area of irrigated land, and Kern and Tulare districts, at the southern extremity of the county, seem to be getting into shape to commence another large system of works at an early day. Many, and in fact most all private and corporate irrigation systems in the county, have also been enlarged and extended.
Tulare presents a peculiar chapter to the wonders of the State, wherein may be read a story of past ages in her great Tulare lake. This name was given to the body of water by early explorers from the Catholic mission and the subsequent hunters and trappers. Tulare signifies tules, and the county and city of Tulare were both named for the lake. This lake was formerly about thirty miles long, and covered one hundred square miles of surface. It has no outlet, the waters of the Tulare, King's and Kaweah rivers, with those of small streams, sinking and evaporating. In recent years much of this supply of water has been diverted for irrigation purposes. One canal alone, called the " 76," takes away a stream one hundred feet wide and four feet deep. Evaporation has done much to reduce the size of the lake, and recently a small forest of trees, broken off and strewn about, were discovered on the lake's bottom. None of these are uprooted, but stand as stumps and snags in the shallow water which has protected them from decay. The variety seems to be willow, grown sometimes two feet thick, and doubtless of great age. The trees were probably about their present size when the water submerged them, as they would not live under a very considerable depth. Evidently Tulare Lake is not a body of water of very ancient origin. Fish have always been abundant in its waters, perch and catfish being most plentiful. The lake is now very much smaller than formerly, and as the rivers that feed it are being turned into irrigation districts, it will be no long period before the rich body of land it covers will be in use for cultivation unless it is fed by a considerable number of springs at its bottom.
Tulare county has room for ten times her present population, and gladly welcomes immigration. Prices for lands rule much lower here than in the older sections of the State, where results of culture are better known.
SAN LUIS OBISPO COUNTY is one of the twenty-seven sub-divisions of the State made prior to its admission into the Union. It derived its name from the mission founded one hundred and twenty years ago in honor of the memory of Saint Luis, the Bishop of Toulouse. The history of the county is intimately bound up with that of the various mission establishments in California.
On June 3, 1770, was founded the mission and presidio of San Carlos Borromeo de Monterey. In accordance with previous orders Portola, as soon as a beginning was fairly made at Monterey, turned the government of the new establishments over to the padres, and sailed away in the San Antonio on the 9th of July. During the year 1770 little was done at Monterey owing to a lack of priests and soldiers. The eestablishment of the mission San Buenaventura had to be postponed on this account. In May, 1771, the San Antonio again anchored in the bay of Monterey, having on board ten priests with all the necessary appurtenances for the establishment of the five new missions proposed, namely : an Buenaventura, San Gabriel, San Luis Obispo, San Antonio, Santa Clara and San Francisco. Domingo Juncosa and Jose Cavalier were appointed to superintend the founding of the San Luis Obispo mission. The natives became hostile about this time and the work of the missionaries was deterred for awhile. In the ratter part of September re-enforcements arrived. In consequence of the recent outbreak six soldiers were added to the guard at San Gabriel, and the founding of a new mission was postponed. The next year the San Antonio brought orders to explore the bay of San Francisco, and fortify and found a mission there. Accordingly, with Crespi, twelve soldiers, a muleteer and an Indian, Fages started for San Francisco. The party returned in April without doing anything of importance.
During Fages' absence Serra had received messages detailing great destitution and sickness at San Diego. Eelief was sent, but this So depleted his store that during May, June and July Fages kept the men at the presidio, and the people at the mission, alive on bear's meat. Fages and Serra decided to return to San Diego. The occasion seeming opportune, the president resolved on his way home to establish one of the new missions at Canada de los Osos. He therefore took with him Padre Caballer, the mission guard and the required vestments and utensils. A site called by the natives Tixlini was selected, half a league from the canyon, but within sight of it. On September 1, 1772, Junipero raised the Christian symbol, said mass, and thus ushered in the mission of San Luis Obispo de Tolosa. Caballer was left to labor alone at first, with five soldiers and two Indians to work on the building. The natives were well disposed, recalling past kindness, and were willing to be taught the new religion and mode of living. They were ready to work, offered their children for baptism, and helped with their seeds to eke out the friar's scanty food supply. The mission prospered and grew wealthy. Fine buildings were erected, some of which are in good state of preservation to the present day, and a great number of converts were made.
Twenty-five years after the founding of the San Luis Obispo mission, or in July, 1Y97, the site for another mission in this county was chosen at a place called Los Posas by the Spaniards, and Yania by the natives. Here Padres Laserem and Sitar founded an establishment which, in honor of the Archangel Michael, was named San Miguel. This, too, grew rapidly, and there was soon a large number of Gentiles gathered here for purposes of conversion. Padre Horra was placed in charge, but for some reason gave dissatisfaction. Like the mission of San Luis Obispo the one at San Miguel went through the same history of prosperity and adversity, and when the American occupation occurred but few traces of its former grandeur remained. Of the buildings covering many acres of ground, only one now remains, while the front porch of the church building is actually the private possession of an individual whose property line reaches to the wall of the structure itself.
From the time of the admission of California down to about five years ago, the growth of San Luis Obispo was slow. It was isolated and difficult of access, and population did not increase with any great speed. But with the advent of the railroad in 1887, this was changed, and since then great strides have been taken, particularly in the eastern part of the county. The county is one of the finest in the State, and embraces over 2,000,000 acres of fertile territory. It is almost as large as the State of Connecticut. San Luis Obispo has been deprived, by the caprice of chance, of direct railroad communication ; she has been contemptuously condemned by the arrogance of ignorance as a " cow county." She has wilted and almost withered beneath the traditional lethargy of her Silurian settlers ; but, with the speedy completion of the Southern Pacific railroad, a radical change has already commenced - a resurrection is at hand. The gap between Ehvood and Santa Margarita will soon be closed, and that will be the route taken by passengers east by way of ITew Orleans.
At San Luis Obispo, with only 3,000 inhabitants, there is over |1,000,000 lying on deposit in the three banks. Within the past year many notable improvements have been completed. A much needed system of sewerage has been laid down; a magnificent county bank has been built ; a club, in its small way as luxurious as the Pacific Union, has been organizec Chrome reduction works and an ice factory wil. shortly be in full blast, while numerous new buildings testify abundantly to a generous confidence in the future. lS.ov has progress stayed her hand at San Luis. Arroyo Grande, Niponee and Paso Robles, bear eloquent witness to the contrary. In Paso Kobles upwards of a quarter of a million dollars has been expended in private and municipal improvements since last Christmas. This town boasts a superb hotel, an elaborate bath-house, a street railway, and an evergrowing reputation for push and enterprise.
The taxable property of the county in 1884 was $6,000,000 ; to-day it is §20,000,000. The population in 1880 was 9,142. It it; now more tUan 20,000. San Luis raises the biggest onions in tlie world, some of them weighing four pounds apiece. Her oa,bbages are Brobdignagian. Herpumkins might be converted into coaches without the fairy wand of Cinderella's godmother. Her potatoes are simply monstrous ; one of them would prove a meal for Garantua himself. She makes, moreover, the Snest butter and cheese in California, but these, the industries of her infancy, will give place in her maturity to others more complex and remunerative. Prunes do especially well. One orchard this season has netted its fortunate owner $175 per acre. An eminent authority has pronounced the eastern slopes of the Coast range to be the special domain of the Sauterne grape. A walnut tree, carelessly planted in the garden of one of the city fathers, produced this year a crop that sold for $35, a most pertinent fact and almost incredible.
But San Luis Obispo prides herself upon more esthetic features than those just enumerated. If she appeals to the poor she appeals also to the rich. Her scenery is pastoral and charming. Her climate is salubrious, equable and delightful alike in summer and winter. At Pismo there is the best clam beach in the world, dear alike to the horseman and the gourmand, a broad ribbon of hard, dazzling sand more than twenty miles long, the finest road in the State. There are trout in the brooks, quail and deer in the hills, and ducks upon the lakes. There is, in a word, profit for uU and pleasure for all. To the farmer, the horticulturist, the invalid and the sportsman San Luis Obispo uolds out her hand in cordial greeting. She courts investigation, she invites criticism, and she demands, first and last, recognition.
When the improvements at Port Harford are completed, sice wiU possess an excellent harbor, destined to be the terminus of a transcontinental road. Her fisheries are most valuable and almost unexploited. Her mineral springs are famous the world over. Her soil, Tvith proper cultivation, yields many and diverse treasures. She produces all the cereals and fruits of tLe tempesrate zone with a truly tropical exuberance. In her mountains are quicksilver, onyx unexcelled in the world, copper, coal, chrome, iron, granite, gold and salver. There are inexhaustible supplies of asphaltum and bitumen, and beneath these deposits are vast reservoirs of petroleum yet undeveloped.
KERN COUNTY was organized in 1866, from the territory originally assigned to Mariposo. It derives its name from the river discovered and named by Lieutenant Moraga years before. The fur traders trapped the beaver in the San Joaquin river and tributaries before the discovery of gold ; but Cajv tain C. H. Weber, the founder of Stockton, was the first permanent settler in the valley. The broad plains and beautiful rivers of this section had attracted many Mexican rancheros, who, with their fatted herds, enjoyed the greatest freedom. Later the mining interests predominated; only for a short season, however, as the husbandman's plow no sooner turned the soil than the beautiful j'ield gladdened the hearts of the settlers, and in a few years the lowing herds gave way to hamlets and villages. These early settlers were good, oldfashioned people who cared very little for politics and the outside world, and stayed at home and tilled their farms, raised stock, made money, and were contented and happy.
The county seat of Kern, when first established, was fixed at Havilah, a town which owed its prominence to mining. In 1874 it was removed to Bakersfield, on the Southern Pacific railroad, and as that has been made a small city by the combined influence of the fruits and vines and the railroad, it will suffer no farther interference. Indeed the Southern Pacific Companj'has made the immense progress and prosperity of Kern county possible, as it has every one of the sections reached by its great number of branches.
In the early part of 1854 a party of emigrants on their way from Los Angeles discovered gold within the limits of what is now known as Kern county. The news of the finding of the precious metal spread rapidly throughout the State, but it was not till 1857 that the great rush, called the Kern river gold excitement, memorable throughout the State, as one of these periodical furors which in former years so peculiarly characterized California, was made. Soon the mountains swarmed with eager men searching for gold, and it was not long till other discoveries were made, and French Gulch, Spanish Gulch, Havilah, Keysville and other places of similar character and names were found to contain a considerable amount of the precious metal. The placers which had been found in the gulches, and bars and flats along the river, were soon exhausted, and attention was turned to the source of the treasure and efforts made to discover it. Numerous small leads, and one large one were found near Keysville, and a quartz mill was erected in the vicinity in 1859. It was soon found that without large capital mining in this county was not profitable, and soon placer mining was entirely abandoned and quartz mining became the dominant interest. After being successfully worked for a number of years the inhabitants of the camps turned their attention toward agriculture. But of late years the discovery of better and more economical methods of working gold-bearing ores has led to a partial resumption of quartz mining, and there is good promise for the future.
In earlier times this section was only a cattle and sheep pasture. Later it was noted for its fine breed of horses, principally those raised by J. B. Haggin on his famous Eosedale farm. Now it is becoming celebrated for its fine fruits. Its peaches are among the best produced in the State. Five large and prosperous colonies have been established in the Kern delta, three of which have been more recently planted by the Kern County Land Company and are in a prosperous condition. The Deacon Brothers, from Indiana, are inducing colonists from their old neighborhood to settle near Bakersfleld. Other colonies are being promoted. A majority of the residents of two of these colonies are English people, and they seem to be very contented in their new homes. Eosedale colony is the largest and has been improved to such an extent that It looks like a garden. Large vineyards have been planted and will give their first good yield the coming season.
This valley, or what is called the Kern delta, is undoubtedly the coming garden spot of the San Joaquin valley. There is no kind of fruit that does not grow here to perfection, owing to the excellent climate and the peculiar formation of the soil. The irrigation system being owned and controlled by a company of a few persons, and under one management, it can be made to produce the best results. The cultivation of alfalfa is one of the main industries, and corn, Egyptian corn and beets grow and yield immensely. There are several fine orange orchards in the foothills of the Tehachapi range, the principal one being owned by General Beal on his famous Tejon ranch. Delano, Sumner and Tehachapi are all thriving towns, and altogether Kern county is proud of her present condition and has flattering prospects for the future. The shipments of wheat, fruit and other products of Kern county by the Pacific railroad from Bakersville for the year 1892 amounted to about $2,500,000 in value.
SANTA BARBARA COUNTY is one of the original sub-divisions of the State, with the town of Santa Barbara for the county seat. It is the most desirable residence locality in the State, and produces everything needed to make life agreeable. A single point is in evidence which should prove this. The mission fathers were renowned for selecting the loveliest and most fertile and healthy spots for their missionary abodes. San Buenaventura, Santa Barbara, Lompoc, Purisima and Santa Ynez were at one time within the boundaries of Santa Barbara county.
The Santa Barbara mission was founded December 4, 1776. Antonio Paterna and Christoval Bramos were the first priests in charge. The first church was built not far from the present center of the town, near the old presidio walls. It was made of boulders laid in mortar. After the new church or present mission building was erected the old church was used as a school-house until it became unsafe. Here, under the most favorable circumstances, with a mild climate and a fertile soil, the mission grew in wealth and population. In 1802, Humboldt, who was visiting Mexico, examined the returns of the missions of Alta California, and expressed much astonishment at the amount of cattle and other stock which had accumulated in twenty years, especially as a large number of Indians had to be fed from the yearly production. In 1812 the mission fed 1,300 people, had 4,000 head of cattle, 8,000 sheep, 250 swine, 1,332 horses and 142 mules. The productions for the year were 3,853 bushels of Avheat, 400 of corn, 126 of barley and 26 of beans.
In time a new church building was required, and the material from which it was constructed was a peculiar quality of soft sandstone, which was procured in great abundance from a neighboring canyon, and was easily split into the required shapes. Tools had to be made from old scrap iron obtained from the ships, and the wondering Indians were taught blacksmithing. There were at least two hundred Indians, representatives of forty different and hostile tribes, employed in breaking and arranging the stone. This fact alone proves that Fathers Rapoli and Victoria, under whose direct charge the Indians worked, were men of far more than ordinary ability, for it required no small amount of skill to keep these members of hostile tribes on a harmonious basis.
The girls were gathered together, and taught to clothe themselves, and to card and spin and weave the fabrics from which their clothing was made. Fruit trees were planted, and a mill erected by a small stream, which, in itself an insignificant affair, was, nevertheless, to the Indians the work of some supernatural beings. The friars got along very well with the Indians until several of the chiefs began to revolt at the custom which was gradually being adopted of placing the young squaws in a kind of nunnery as soon as they became of age. This the chiefs of the different tribes objected to, and organized a band of hostile warriors, who attacked and attempted to demolish the mission ; but the revolution was quelled in the bud and the hostiles put to flight.
The missions became so prosperous, and their landed interests so extensive, that &everal of the neighboring Spanish grandees looked with covetous eyes upon the property of the Franciscan friars. It was all right for the grandees to hold large landed estates themselves, but it went against their grain to see anyone else in possession of them. They accordingly proceeded to incense the Indians against the priests, charging despotism, robbery and tyranny. There used to be a yearly collection in Mexico amounting to $50,000 to help the missions, but this was now stopped. The friars knew not what to do. At last several of the Mexicans began claiming large portions of the mission property, and in a short time all the missions of California were confiscated by the State. It was a foolish move on. the part of the authorities. The Indians immediately ran wild and soon returned to their old haunts and modes of living, committing many crimes and robberies on the colonists, until they finally became so dangerous that the existence of the colony was for a time in danger. After a few years almost the entire possessions of the missions were in the hands of the Mexican farmers and cattle raisers.
So far the county of Santa Barbara was chiefly inhabited and controlled by wealthy Mexican ranchers, whose farms consisted of thousands of acres, most of which was unused. When it became known throughout the State that the great ranches were being broken up, and that the best of the land was obtainable, in some instances as low as twenty-five cents an acre, an immigration commenced that in a few months revolutionized the whole industrial and social condition of society. The newcomers opened a variety of industries. Wheat, which had been raised in smalj quantities and ground up into an inferior quality of flour, for home use, was now raised for export. At first those who engaged in this pursuit were discouraged, owing to there being no wharves from which it could be transferred to ships. As the rich and productive quality of the soil became known, wharves were projected, and the Santa Barbara wharf was constructed in the summer of 1868 by a company of citizens. Previous to this all freight was transferred from the ships, which lay a mile or two from shore, by means of surf boats, and was generally in a deplorable condition before it reached its destination. About this time attention was drawn to this locality as a delightful place for residence and health resort, and people commenced coming in from all parts of the country. A boom set in and" soon modern Santa Barbara grew up in and about the ancient Spanish Pueblo. New settlements sprang up in the succeeding year in various directions, notably in the northern part of the county, where Lompoc, Santa Tnez and other places are among the centers of population.
The mining and shipment of bituminous rock and asphaltum in this county have assumed some considerable magnitude during the past year or two, and the output is constantly increasing. At Carpenteria thousands of dollars have been expended in erecting refining works, putting in switches, building houses, etc. for the workmen engaged in developing the asphaltum products.
Santa Barbara has always contended that she has a remarkably safe anchorage for large vessels, as well as ample wharfage room for the accommodation of deep sea ships. This has been illustrated in the fact that all British war-ships passing up and down the coast now make a regular practice of putting in here for provisions, meats, and supplies of various kinds, all of which goes to prove the availability of the harbor, which jealous outsiders term an " open roadstead " for the accommodation of deep-draft vessels. During a single week recently there have been three British men-ofwar in the harbor, the "Warsprite, Melpomene and ISTymphe. The fact that the United States Government has made a permanent course in the channel of Santa Barbara for speed-testing the war vessels built on the coast is a point of local importance of which the citizens feel proud.
Hon. Elwood Cooper and others have rendered Santa Barbara noted for its fine olives, which had become an important part of the daily fare under the padre regime. Its walnuts, almonds, figs, otanges and lemons are not surpassed by those raised elsewhere in the State. "When the Southern Pacific Company conveys all its thousands of Eastern passengers through Santa Barbara, not one in a thousand but will ask for a " stop-over " at that point, and not one but will leave it with regret, whether the season be what the almanacs say should be summer, fall, or winter, but of which changes no note is taken in equable Santa Barbara.
VENTURA COUNTY was segregated from the lower end of Santa Barbara in 1872, and San Buenaventura designated as the county seat. Up to 1860 very nearly all of what is now Ventura county was held by Mexicans in ranches of great extent, and there were but nine foreign families residing within its limits. This was due to the fact that its territory had been selected by favorites of the Mexican authorities because of the salubrity of the climate, the fertility of the soil and the natural beauty of the surroundings ; and these favorites had obtained grants for just as large tracts as possible before the country came into the possession of the United States, and by the terms of the treaty with Mexico these grants had to be confirmed. Americans did not care to till and improve soil which they could not own, and notwithstanding all the great natural advantages, Ventura was avoided. But the time came when some of the Mexican ranchers were induced to dispose of portions of their great but Unproductive estates. The ranches Santa Paula, Saticoy, and Colonia or Santa Clara Were divided and quickly found purchasers. New blood was introduced, and the era of progress and prosperity began for Yentura which has never had a check since.
San Buenaventura mission was founded March 31, 1782, by Junipero Serra, and was placed in charge of Fathers Bonito and Camban. The first mass was said in a shanty erected for the purpose near the southeastern corner of the old orchard of the present mission. The church was first erected near the same place, but, owing to a sudden rise of the Yentura river which washed the foundation away, had to be abandoned. A new church was soon erected on an elevation above any such danger, and palm and fruit trees were planted in great abundance. The building is still standing in the center of the city of Yentura, and is an object of great interest to all. Many of the most prominent buildings in the present town are on the ground once occupied as the garden of the mission. As in the case of all churches built subsequent to the great earthquake, which occurred in December, 1811, the walls are of extreme thickness, being nearly six feet at the base.
The first church was dedicated September 9, 1789. Four priests are interred within its walls. This mission, like many of the others, had great trouble with the Indians, many of the neighboring tribes being extremely warlike. Petty insurrections were numerous and frequent, but usually terminated in nothing serious. The habit of shutting up the Indian girls when they arrived at maturity was the cause of more trouble thaa anything else. In 1834 there was quite an uprising and although at the beginning it looked as though the days of the mission were at an end, the fathers, with the aid of the Indians who remained true, succeeded in driving the hostile tribes off. The tile roof of the church was entirely destroyed by the severe earthquake of 1857, but was soon replaced by one of shingles.
Within the past year this county has made rapid progress in material wealth, and its population has increased twenty-eight per cent. It is the largest producer of beans of any county or section of the State. The value of its last season's output exceeded $1,000,000, and the barley crop approximated 700,000 centals. A great deal of the valley and foothill lands formerly devoted to the raising of cereals has been planted to fruits and walnut trees, and during the year 1892 several thousand acres have been set out to young orchards, the apricot and prune predominating. The brown-stone quarries have been worked more extensively the past season, and considerable progress has been made in developing the gypsum and asphalt deposits, which bid fair to become profitable industries.
The oil industry, which has its center at the rapidly growing town of Santa Paula, has doubled its proportions within the past twelve months, and the output of crude petroleum at that point alone exceeds 1,000 barrels per day. New wells and new territory have been developed, and the outlook for an extensive permanent and profitable oil industry could not be better.
Within the past year an incorporated company has obtained a franchise and the right of way to build an electric railroad between Ventura and the beautiful and far-famed Ojai valley, a distance of twelve miles. The track has been laid through and cars, which have arrived at the Southern Pacific depot, will be running over that part of the line very shortly. Huneme, New Jerusalem, Saticoy, Montalvo, and the new towns in the county have all made progress in 1892, and promise better for the future.
LOS ANGELES COUNTY was organized by the first legislature in February, 1850. Its boundaries embraced considerable more territory than at present. Los Angeles city always has been the seat of justice. The county is now about one hundred and twenty miles long and seventy-two broad at its greatest measurement. There are about 3,000,000 acres of land in the county, much of which is wonderfully rich and productive.
The peublo of the Queen of Angels, as an abiding place for the mission soldiers, was founded September 4, 1781, the proclamation of its establishment having been issued by Felipe de Neve, governor of California, in August of that year. The site was upon the spot occupid formerly by the Indian village Yangna. " Nuestra Senora la Eeyna de los Angeles" - Our Lady, the Queen of the Angels - was to be the fostering and protecting spirit, and her name was given to the pueblo. Twelve adult males and their familieSj comprising fortysix people, founded the place. History relates that one of the adults was a native of China. The houses, built of adobe, very small and roofed over with asphaltum brought from near-by deposits, were faced upon three sides of a square, wherein was a public building. Los Angeles was in fact an outpost merely of San Gabriel mission, eight miles to the east, and founded ten years before, to which place the people went for their provisions and to witness the Sunday festivities.
History begins for Los Angeles county much back of the city or even the San Gabriel mission. The white explorers who first penetrated to California's wilds, and exploded the once existing theory that it was a vast island, were that band of intrepid Jesuits under Father Kino (more properly Kuhn) who reached the Gila and Colorado rivers and then traveled over the valleys and mountains to the southwest in the year 1700. By 1720 he and his coadjutors had established fifteen missions upon the peninsula of California, but forty-six years later the king of Spain removed them. In 1767 the Franciscan friars took their places, to be in turn displaced five years after by the Dominican friars.
The Indians whom the friars found, and for whose conversion and civilization they so earnestly labored, were an unusually fine tribe. They had forty villages, including settlements upon Santa Catalina and San Clemente islands. Civil war was never waged. Their villages contained from 500 to 1,500 huts. " Suanga" was the largest. These Indians have been called " Calhuillas," a name which is said to have attached to them through a blunder, as the word was used by them as a salutation and signifies " master." They enjoyed a very complete government. In their religion they had no belief in purgatory or hell, and worshiped one god, " Qua-o-ar," very reverently. Many people question whether the modern innovation on their sound beliefs was a benefit. Local laws and customs among these people constrained each to behavior that might still be exemplary in many Christians. Unlike most California tribes, the men did a good deal of hunting and were very successful in slaying deer and smaller animals, which were very plentiful. Their funeral feasts and other ceremonials were very weird and solemn. In one of them a young eaglet, captured just before he could fly, was nurtured to maturity, and then, after a most impressive and mysterious adjuration to send only happiness and prosperity from the Great Spirit to the natives, the bird was killed, and its soul was thereby freed. The body was then burned upon the fire of the feast. A number of legends and traditions existed among these Indians that would have done credit to the proudest of the Latin race. One corresponds closely to the tale of Orpheus and Eurydice. Another relates that the Pleiades are seven beautiful Indian maidens who transformed themselves into stars because their husbands treated them shamefully and ate all of the rabbits they killed, instead of dividing with them. Fortunately this transformation business on the part of females is a lost art. One of the prettiest tales is th9,t the moofl is the mother of the Indian nation, having given birth to the first female child among them.
The mission San Gabriel was founded in the year 17T1. The next mission built upon Los Angeles county's territory was tnat of San Juan Capisti-ano in 1776. This mission was particularly ambitious in the size and strength of its buildings, thirty years being required for the completion of the structure. Six years later a terrible earthquake shattered some of the adobe dwellings, and thirty-six victims, priests and neophytes, were buried in the ruins.
In 1822 Mexico had become independent of Spain. The same priests at the mission took new oaths of allegiance and administered the new ones to the Indians. There was no apparent change of government at the missions beyond these oaths. The destruction of the missions was in progress from 1824 to 1836. The Indians were manumitted in 1824-26, and soon fell into degenerate ways. In 1834 order was restored by again placing the Indians under control of the padres. Soon after the authorities at Santa Ana took the " pious fund " from the missions, and then divided up the lands, promulgating laws for the government of towns thus established. The priesthoods were abolished. Soon a wholesale destruction of the vast herds of cattle that the missions owned v/as begun. Only the hides and tallow of the beasts were saved. Many white settlers took bands of young stock and thereby started herds of their own. At the mission buildings were unroofed, tim.bers burnt, orchards and vineyards torn up and despoiled ; everything ruined. The Indians refused to cut down the vines, but Mexicans aftervYard did it. The natives went back to their tule huts and resumed their religion, which had never been really abandoned for a moment. Thus were any benefits that might have resulted to the aborigines swept aside, and the work of the mission fathers went for naught.
The honor of having been the first English speaking settler of Los Angeles county is claimed by W. Whittle and Joseph Chapman. Whittle produces an old Spanish document dated 1835, in which he claims to have been in the country twenty years - that is since 1815. There are now large numbers in the county who may claim the title of " pioneers," and they may well be proud of the progress which has accompanied their residence and recompensed their efforts.
Los Angeles city has made an even race with the country since the beginning of its growth, and during the last five years especially. The permanent residents have no just appreciation of the remarkable advance made. Absentees, returning, after five years abroad, can see it, and find it hard to realize that such wonderful progress could be made in so short a time. New faces are seen everywhere, and it is estimated that the increase in population since the taking of the census has been fully twenty per cent. An internal sewer system, costing $374,000, has been completed, and $395,000 voted to pay for an outfall sewer to the ocean. A municipal water system, to cost $526,000, is to be constructed. There is over $10,750,000 on deposit in the nineteen banks in Los Angeles, or about as much as there was during the boom, when money was not in great demand. The post-office receipts are about the same as they were in 1887, when people stood in line for hours to get their mail.
Los Angeles has twelve lines of railroad centeiing there. The Santa Fe Company has commenced work on a handsome depot, rendered necessary by growing business. There are one hundred miles of street railroad, mostly cable and electric, the cars carrying over 12,000,000 passengers in 1892. Much street improvement has taken place in a year, and there are now one hundred and five miles of graded road, all of it paved or macadamized, and all the business streets are paved with bituminous rock or asphalt.
Coaches run to the most popular resorts, very many persons preferring the coach to the railroad car because of the advantage thus obtained of seeing the countrj'. A coach conveys passengers through the great orchards and vineyards to Baldwin's Santa Anita ranch and Monrovia. Many go and go again, allured by the magnificent beauties along the route, not less than by the gorgeous hospitality of Mr. Lawrence, at the Hotel Oakwood, Arcadia.
The planting of fruit trees during the past year has been something to marvel at. There are now about 1,500,000 fruit trees growing in the county, and an immense area of orchard was planted this winter. Great profits have been made during the past year by our horticulturists in deciduous fruits - prunes, apricots, peaches, etc. - and these now rival the citrus varieties in popularity. This year Los Angeles county commenced the shipment of deciduous green fruits to the East on a commercial scale, forty car loads being forwarded from Pomona alone. This industry, which has hitherto been confined almost exclusively to northern California, promises soon to rival the orange business in importance. The introduction of a correct method of curing lemons, and the high prices received for the crop, have given a great impetus to that branch of horticulture.
Pasaaena, which suffered much from the subsidence of the real estate boom, has taken a fresh start this year. Property is frequently changing hands and trade is active. Much building has been done and new land placed under cultivation. An outfall sewer system has been completed, more water developed, and a large storage reservoir constructed. A manual training school and polytechnic institute of high grade has been opened.
Pomona has more than maintained its prestige as the leading " all around " horticultural center of the county. Shipments of fruit and profits have botli been large. Pomona has become headquarters for the olive industry. A mill to crush the fruit has been built. The fruit crop of Pomona for 1892 was worth nearly $400,000, an amount which will be more than doubled two years hence. Five fruit dryers and a cannery have been running all the season. Two fine school buildings costing $16,000 and $20,000 are being built. A great electric light 'and power system, the supply being drawn from San Antonio canyon, thirteen miles distant, has recently been completed.
Whittier has made many solid improvements during the year, since an improved water supply was obtained. It is estimated that 35,000 trees were planted this year. A cannery, sorghum factory, broom factory and drying establishment have been hard at work. Many lemon trees are being planted.
Land owners throughout what is known as the " Los Nietos country" - Downey, Los Nietos, Norwalk, ComptoD, etc. - have been growing rich on their bountiful products of corn, butter, cheese, fruit, etc. From Rivera about seventy car loads of walnuts were shipped.
Along the coast great activity has prevailed. At Santa Monica the Southern Pacific has extended its track along the beach three miles to Santa Monica, canyon, where the company is at work on its new wharf, 4,600 feet long, the longest wharf in the world. This company has started in to make Santa Monica, and there is no doubt it will succeed. The Soldier's Home, built on the land donated for the purpose - worth several hundred thousand dollars - by Senator Jones of Nevada, and Colonel Baker of Los Angeles, has been much improved, and proposes to compete with the best orchards in the county.
Eedondo has lengthened its wharf and built up a big business, being ahead of San Pedro in coastwise freight. A handsome casino has been built for the convenience of visitors, with which the resort has been crowded during the summer. San Pedro expects a big boom now that the government engineers have recommended that place as a site for the deep water harbor, to cost nearly $3,000,000. Long Beach is at work on a wharf 1,631 feet long, to cost $15,000. Santa Catalina island has become a most popular resort, having had as many as 2,000 visitors at a time during last summer.
SAN BERNARDINO COUNTY was formed in 1853, with the town of the same name as county seat. There was a small settlement of Spaniards on the Santa Ana river, about where the city of San Bernardino is situated. There were no Americans resident in that great territory when gold was discovered.
After Brigham Young and his followers located at Salt Lake he determined to get a foothold on the Pacific coast, preliminary to gaining possession of the whole land. To that end about three hundred men, women and children were sent to plant an outpost in the far-off land, and after numerous trials purchased a tract of land from the Lugo family, who were in possession of the San Bernardino ranch, a Spanish grant of 46,000 acres, and at once set about making improvements. They laid out the town of San Bernardino on the plan of Salt Lake City, giving it broad streets lined with Cottonwood trees and irrigating ditches. Fields of grain were planted, orchards and vineyards set out, and soon a thriving settlement was established in the heart of what had been until that time an immense cattle range. Attracted by the fame thus given to this section, many Gentiles now found their way here, and as their ideas and interests clashed with those of the pioneer settlers more or less trouble ensued, and for several years the valley was the scene of many broils and considerable bloodshed. Up to 1857, however, the Mormon element remained in the ascendant. But in that year came the famous Johnson mission of Utah, the first attempt made by the United States Government to bring Brigham Young and his fanatical followers to a realization of their duties toward the law. At the outset the Mormon prophet decided to resist the troops, and with this end in view he sent out hurried but peremptory orders for all the saints to return at once to the headquarters at Salt Lake, in order to present a solid front against the invading troops.
The bulk of the settlers at San Bernardino obeyed their orders, and then occurred the memorable event known to this day in tiie history of San Bernardino as the Mormon exodus. It was necessary for the faithful to dispose of their property in the quickest manner possible ; and, as the number of sellers far exceeded those able or willing to buy, the most ruinous sacrifices were made. Houses, farms, orchards and vineyards were sold for less than the traditional song, and in more than one instance they abandoned their all without receiving any recompense, and set out on the long and weary desert journey of nearly a thousand miles. Some few of the Mormons, with the memory of that fearful journey still fresh in their minds, and well content with their surroundings, paid no heed to the directions of their spiritual leader and concluded that they could worship God after the dictates of their own consciences fully as well in the San Bernardino valley as in Salt Lake, and so remained. They had never practiced polygamy, or at all events not in their present abiding place, and had little difficulty in affiliating and even intermarrying with the Gentiles, who now poured in from all quarters.
In 1859-60 gold was discovered in the stream heading in the mountain valley to the north of San Bernardino, and there was a repetition of the wild scenes of the early mining camps in California. Holcomb and Bear valley were the centers of great activity, and a crowd gathered there to whom law was a myth and their passions the controlling element. When the war broke out, the majority in this section were rebel sympathizers, and the minority holding minor sentiments were compelled to be on their guard. The sympathizers with the South had a regular organization in Holcomb valley, and several expeditions were sent out to join forces with the Confederacy. One of these was led by a preacher who was killed before he reached his destination. A small but determined organization of Union men was formed in the town of San Bernardino, and for some time the community was disturbed by the threats of the rebel sympathizers that they would capture and sack the place. The presence of some soldiers, and the determined attitude of the Union men, at the head of whom were George Lord, John Brown, Sr., William' Heap and others, cowed the secessioei sympathizers, however, and no violence was attempted. With the close of hostilities, at the surrender, all feelings of bitterness engendered by the war died out, and all joined in the work of improving the splendid country in which tliey lived. The completion of the Southern Pacific railroad aided materially in the change, while the construction of vast irrigation enterprises, and the inauguration of many colony settlements completed the good work and wrought an entire revolution in the social structure.
In 1871 the settlement at Riverside was commenced, and from the humblest and most discouraging beginnings, has grown to a wealthy and prosperous community whose reputation is world-wide. In quick succession followed the Etiwanda, Ontario, Lugonia, Eedlands and other similar settlements, while a perfect network of irrigating canals and railroads now covers the entire valley, and the horticultural products of San Bernardino county are now among the choicest in the State. In che higher development of irrigation and horticulture, San Bernardino leads the State, and she is the example held up for imitation by every locality which desires progress and prosperity.
A large share of this county is included within the limits of the Mojave and Colorado deserts, and here rich mines of gold, silver, copper and other minerals have been found, which have brought large wealth to their discoverers and owners.
New and extensive irrigation enterprises have been organized, and in time no water will be permitted to go to waste. It is believed that when all is utilized, supplemented by what can be obtained from artesian wells, there will be no lands ia the county which cannot be devoted to fruits and vines. The Southern Pacific and Santa Fe railroads have been the most pronounced benefactors to every section of this great county, preceding settlers to many points where there was fertile soil and a prospect that the vacant acres would be wanted for homes by immigrants.
During the year last past Ontario's car of progress attained a gratifying speed, bringing its 2,000 passengers to the point of general prosperity. In horticulture Ontario's advance has been most pronounced, 1,015 acres having been added to her fruit area in 1892, making the plape second to Riverside in this point. Though but nine years old, Ontario's orange shipments will this season exceed 160 car loads. Several residences, costing from $5,000 to $12,000 each, have recently been completed. Among the industrial enterprises inaugurated in 1892 was a fruit canning and drying plant costing $25,000. The plant was successfully operated last season, canning 900 tons of deciduous fruit. Ontario is now expending $400,000 in making her water rights the best in the State.
One of the youngest and most vigorous settlements, in the county, and which is making remarkable advance, is Chino. It is the seat of the beet sugar industry in southern California, which is proving of the highest industrial value to the community and the county in general. During the past year about 3,600 acres of virgin soil have been brought under a high state of cultivation for the first time. The sugar output from the Chino Yalley Beet Sugar factory was 7,903,541 pounds. During the coming season the factory will be enlarged and 6,000 acres planted to beets. There were also 147 acres of orchard trees planted, largely olives and prunes, making the present fruit acreage 611. A number of buildings have been completed during the year, including a $10,000 opera house and fine residences. The population of Chino is now about 1,500.
Other points in the county are advancing rapidly. At Banning, Beaumont, South Riverside, Highland, Etiwanda, Cucamonga, Eialto, and all other favorable fruit districts, the area being reclaimed and planted to fruits of all kinds, citrus and deciduous, according to adaptability, is very large. In the Yucalpe valley twentj'-five acres were planted to cherries, and as many more to apples, these fruits developing flnely in that region. Needles, on the desert, is booming from her mineral interests, a large number of prospects having been developed successfully in that vicinity. A new smelter is in process of construction there, which will have a tendency to further encourage mining interests. At other desert points new mines are being opened up, all creating commercial enterprise and increased prosperity. At no time since the boom has San Bernardino county evinced such decided prosperity as at the present.
ORANGE COUNTY was created from the southeasterly portion of Los Angeles county in March, 1889, with Santa Ana as the county seat. It was practically an orange orchard when established, and very appropriately assumed the name of the golden fruit. It contains about 600,000 acres, almost all of which is under cultivation.
With the exception of the settlements at Anaheim and San Juan the history of Orange county dates from the latter part of the sixties. In 1868 "W. H. Spargeon, who laid out and established Santa Ana, settled at what is now the corner of West and Fourth streets, where he erected a building and started a country store, rlis first important competitor was L. Gildmacher, one of the best established and most prosperous of Santa Ana's merchants.
Ten years later marks the advent of the Southern Pacific Railroad. During this interval the surrounding country was converted from a sheep pasture to orange groves, fruit orchards and vineyards. At the close of another decade the Southern California Kailroad, a branch of the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe, had completed its line through the heart of the county, connecting Santa Ana with San Diego, San Bernardino and Los Angeles.
The residents of Orange are principally immigrants from the Eastern States and Canada. Its educational and religious advantages compare favorably with those of any portion of the State. Its citizens are enterprising and prosperous. By the completion of the Newport Eailroad Santa Ana has extended her importance as the commercial center of the county. The most marked progress by the county was made during the past year in the increase of her acreage planted to trees and vineyards, and devoted to agriculture. The artesian belt lying west of Santa Ana and Anaheim, much of which at this time last year was a vast pasture field, is subdivided into eighty acre ranches, upon each of which a comfortable cottage and necessary farm buildings have been erected, and corn and grain-fields are substituted for pasturing herds and jackrabbits.
Upon the peat lands south of Westminister an Eastern syndicate has planted acres of cellery and other vegetables which during January and February, 1893, they have been shipping to Eastern cities by the car load. In the vicinity of Garden Grove many acres of cabbage have been planted in the moist lands, and walnut groves grace the uplands. At Anaheim a corporation has been formed for the erection of a sugar beet factory, and sufficient acreage for the culture of beets has been secured to guarantee the successful establishment of the enterprise. At Santa Ana a committee is at work securing acreage, and making arrangements for the erection of a similar enterprise adjacent to the city.
In Santa Ana the most important improvement of the past year was the completion of water-works costing $60,000 by which pure artesian water is forced through ten miles of cast-iron mains to sixty-eight fire plugs distributed throughout the city and to most of the residences within the city limits. Anaheim, the second town in size in the county, was founded in 1857 by a German colony, and is the oldest colony settlement in the county. Westminister, Fairview, Newport, El Toro, El Modena, Yerba and San Juan are important towns and settlements, ranking in size in the order in which they are named. The latter is one of the oldest towns in the State, and is the site of the San Juan Capistrano mission, established in 1776. The most Important seaside resorts are Newport Landing, Laguna, Arch Beach, San Juan-by-the-sea and Anaheim Landing.
SAN DIEGO COUNTY was the first one set apart in the original subdivision of the State. That was in accordance with the exact fitness of things. In very many material particulars the great Architect of the Universe had stamped it first among the places to be inhabited and improved by man, and it will retain that precedence until time is no more. Then it is true that this portion of the North American coast was visited by explorers many years before the name of San Diego was given to any portion of it. But those visits were productive of no results from a historical standpoint, and it was not until the cowled pioneers reached the shores of that great bay to which had been given the name of St. James, or San Diego, that the history of California actually was commenced. It was in 1603 that Admiral Sebastian "Vizcaino, of the Spanish royal squadron, discovered and named this excellent and commodious harbor and gave the news of its existence to his royal master. It is evident, however, that little importance was attached to the discovery, for it was not until 165 years later, or in 1768, that the King of Spain issued a decree ordering the exploration and settlement of the territory adjacent to the bay of San Diego. This momentous undertaking was intrusted to Jose Galvez, the Eoyal Commissioner of New Spain, and in order that success might be assured two expeditions were sent out, one by land, and the other by sea. This latter consisted of three vessels, the San Carlos, Principe and San Jose, while the land expedition was divided into two portions, one commanded by Fernando Moncada and the otlier by Governor Portola.
The vessels arrived first in the harbor of San Diego, one of them entering the bay on the 11th of April, and the other on the 1st of May, 1769, while the third was never heard of after leaving the port of departure. The first of the land parties reached the bay shore on May 14th, and the other on the 1st of July. The water forces had made no attempt at establishing a land settlement, but on the 16th of July, the land having been formally taken possession of in the name of the king of Spain, Father Junipero Serra began the foundation of a mission called after the bay, San Diego, thus commencing the first civilized settlement ever founded in Upper California. The point selected for the mission was on a hill overlooking the river in what is now known as Old Town, where was located an Indian village called Cosoy. A number of buildings were erected, but the newcomers, for some reason, found the natives hard to deal with, and in less than a month there was a pitched battle with them, in which four soldiers were wounded and a boy was killed. It is evident that the natives were of a decidedly different temperament from their descendants of to-day, for they kept up their annoyances to such a degree that five years later it was decided to remove the establishment to a point some five miles distant. A place was selected at the head of what is now known as Mission valley, and a site was chosen that commanded the surrounding territory, and promised to afford good vantage ground for defense against the hostiles.
It was in August, 1774, that the removal was made, and during the ensuing year several substantial buildings were commenced and much ground was prepared for planting. But in this new location no better success was met in dealing with the natives than in the old one. True, many were persuaded to assist in the work of building and preparing the land for cultivation; but it is evident there must have been a smoldering discontent at work all of the time, which took a year or more in coming to a head, but finally broke out with fearful violence. On the 5th of November, 1775, a large number of unconverted Indians, in company with a great portion of the neophytes, surprised the mission at night and made a desperate attack upon it. They set fire to the buildings, murdered their occupants, including the padre in charge of the place, and tortured to death the converts who refused to join them. Only five of the people in the mission escaped with their lives, and as over one thousand Indians were engaged in the attack, it seems remarkable that a single one should have survived the massacre. The military arm of the church stepped in at this juncture and the Indians received a punishment, the good effects of which were permanent. The following year the ruined buildings were replaced, and from that time on tnere was no further trouble of any moment, and the San Diego mission followed the usual fortune of those establishments, reaching a high stage of prosperity, only to be ruined by the decree of secularization enforced by the Mexican government.
After the mission was removed to the interior, the old buildings on the river bank were occupied by soldiers, and the presidio was established there. Down to 1825, with few exceptions, the entire civilized population of the place lived within the presidio inclosure, or so close at hand that they were within the protection of its guns. The Indians were disposed to commit depredations whenever opportunity offered, and. were only deterred by the strong arm of the military.
In. 1835 the pueblo of San Diego was organized under the Mexican laws, but it was not until ten years later, or 1845, that the assignment of the lands to the municipalitj'' was made. A year latei California passed under the control of the American government and the pueblo organization was still maintained, the title of eleven square leagues, or 32,000 acres of land being subsequently confirmed to the city by the United States courts.
When the war with Mexico came San Diego figured prominently in those historical times. The presidio had been abandoned in 1837, but the people erected earthworks and prepared to defend the place against the Americans in 1846. However, Commodore Stockton had no difficulty in entering the harbor and capturing the fort without the loss of a single man.
On December 2, 1846, General Kearney with his small force of troops reached Warner's pass, and at once took the trail for San Diego. Four days later they reached San Pasqual, where they were encountered by the Mexican forces under General Pico. Although largely outnumbered, the Americans, by making an unexpected attack before daylight on their enemies, succeeded after a hard fight in putting them to flight. Later in the day there was another skirmish which resulted as did the first, in the defeat of the Mexicans. Lieutenant Beale.and Kit Carson managed to work* their way through the country, which was alive with the enemy, and took word to Commodore Stockton at San Diego; That officer dispatched a force of marines and sailors to reinforce Kearney, who made the rest of the journey to the bay in safety. At this time the town consisted of only a f few adobe houses situated at the foot of a hill on a sana fiat reaching from the head of San Diego bay nearly to False bay. There was no wharf, although a large amount of business was done in the shipment of hides and tallow in exchange for supplies of all kinds. San Diego was in fact the trading point for a vast extent of territory to the east, north and south.
The people who came here with the American occupation soon saw that if the town was to amount to anything a new and more accessible location must be chosen. Hence in March, 1850, a grant was made some distance to the southward of the old settlement for the establishment of what was to be known as New San Diego, and which is a portion of the present city.
In the boundaries as originally fixed by the legislature a considerable part of what is now in San Bernardino county was assigned to San Diego county. The first election was held on the 1st of April, 1850. There were only two precincts, and a total of 157 votes were' cast, while the aggregate population as shown by the United States census of that year was T98, that of the city itself being 650.
When the Americans came in they found much of the best land of the county already granted to the Spanish pioneers. There were no less than thirty-six such grants, as follows : Agua Hedionda, Buena Yista, Cuca, Cuyamaca, El Cajon, Guajome, Guejito, Jlamacha, Janal, Jaraul, La Penasquitas, Montserrate, Mission San Diego, National Eancho, Otay, Pauba, Pauma, Peninsula of San Diego, Kinoon del Diablo, San Vicente, Santa Ysabel, Santa Rosa, Santa Maria, Santa Dieguito, San Jose del Valle, San Bernardino, San Marcos, San Jacinto, Nuevo, Santa Margarit y Los Flores, San Hacinto Viejo, Valley de San Felipe, Valley de San Jose and Temecule. The aggregate area of these grants is 784,783 acres, while the area of the whole county is 9,580,000 acres, of which a considerable proportion consists of the arid wastes of the Colorado desert, and which are likely to remain arid wastes but a short time. It has long been known that only water was needed to make these unsightly plains blooming and very lovely. The grounds about the Southern Pacific depots, where water was applied, produced wonderfully. About the close of 1892, one of the artesian wells being bored by the railroad authorities near Salton lake began to flow from an eight-inch pipe, and enough pure cool water to irrigate many acres of the desert. Should other artesian wells do as well the whole desert may be reclaimed, producing abundantly all the fruits of the tropics. This promises to be feasible, and if so San Diego will be not only one of the three largest, but much the richest county in America.
For many years after the capture of San Diego by Commodore Stockton, a force of troops was kept at that place, and at different times officers were in command who were destined to achieve subsequent fame, among them being General Heintzelman, Colonel Magruder, Captain Winder and others. The first Pacific railroad survey was made under the escort of a company of troops from San Diego, and among other discoveries made by the party was the point where the waters of the Mojave river disappear on the desert.
It was not until 1851-52 that the turbulent Indians of San Diego received their final quietus. While the tribes that had come into most intimate relationship with the whites were disposed to be friendly, there were others in the interior and on the borders of the desert who lost no opportunity for showing their hostility, not stopping short of murder in so doing. In the latter part of 1851 an attack was made upon the little village of Agua Caliente and several Americans were killed, while a number of buildings were burned. It was learned that a white man named Bill Marshall, who was married to a squaw, had instigated the Indians to this outbreak and had been concerned as well in other affairs in which Americans had been robbed or murdered. They were captured and taken to San Diego for trial. A court-martial was organized. The proceedings were summary, as the pi oof was clear, and they were quickly found guilty and sentenced to be hanged on the following day. A few days after this four Indians, two of whom were village chiefs, were arrested and tried for complicity in the Agua Caliente affair. They also were convicted and sentenced to death, but the indignity of the gallows was exchanged for the more honorable death by shoot, ing. The four were accordingly executed on Christmas morning, 1851, being shot by a detail of twenty soldiers while kneeling at the heads of their graves.
Antonio Garra, the leading chief of the interior, tribes, a well-educated man and possessed of great influence, was also accused of taking a prominent part in the Agua Caliente affair. He, too, was found guilty and was executed by being shot on January 11, 1852. His last words, as he stood by the side of his grave, were "Gentlemen, T ask your pardon for all my offenses and expect yours in return." Then he knelt and met his death like the brave man that he was. The execution of Garra completely cowed the Indians, and from that time to this, with the exception of some minor depredations, there has been no trouble with them.
The era of exceeding prosperity did not dawn for San Diego until the advent of. the Santa Fe railroad. Several surveys had been previously made, and some of the most prominent railroad men in the United States were identified with some of the propositions for reaching San Diego bay with lines extending by connections to the Atlantic States, and notably Tom Scott of the Pennsylvania Company. By the efforts of San Diego citizens, supplemented with subsidies of lands of great value, the Santa Fe Company was induced to extend its branch, known as the Southern California Company, through San Diego city, establishing its terminus six miles beyond, at National city, at the head of San Diego bay. Then prosperity began, not alone for the bay region, but for all the country along its line to Los Angeles. The same experience was had which has attended the enterprising expenditures by the Southern Pacific Company on its numerous branches from Los Angeles county to Del Norte.
An additional impetus was given to the progressive tide setting in for every part of California by a .cutting of rates from the Atlantic States to the Pacific coast. Many thousands of Eastern people took advantage of the low fares and came, saw, and were conquered, and the era of booms was inaugurated. It was this that caused such a generous expenditure for timber to be used as stakes to mark off twenty-foot lots on the hills for miles surrounding the city of San Diego. Thousands of dollars were made by real estate men very frequently in a day, and none were wise enough to know that it was an experience that could not last. The reaction came, and not a few were wrecked ; but, .ike all storms, it left the air filled with healthy ozone, and the gloomy forebodings of the winter of 1887-8 have not been realized. Those who abandoned the place in disgust at that time would not recognize city or country now. Every prediction of the boomers has been more than fulfilled, and none of the efforts expended for improvements have been wasted. Of course the railroad projects anticipated had to be suspended for a time ; but the Cuyamaca line, short as it is, has accomplished wonders for the country adjoining the whole line to its temporary terminus at Lakeside, and the National City and Otay road has fostered the orchard interest until the smoke of its engines shadows the brilliant green of orange, lemon and olive trees along its entire route.
The boom builders of 1887 and 1888 made the city; the settlers of 1892 are making the county. For this reason, therefore, there is little to remark in the growth of the city. An opera house, one of the finest on the coast, completed and dedicated; a jail, just started and to be pushed to completion ; one or two ware-houses and some stores and dwellings, with the power-house of the electric line, are about all the new buildings of the year.
Across the bay Coronado is moving in the direction of an electric line from the ferry to the hotel, and for a double paved street on either side of the track for the entire distance. The hotel pier has been extended into the ocean and the Coronado" railroad has been started on its extension across the islands connecting north and south to the south side of the harbor entrance at tha old whaling station.
The bay itself has passed a memorable year. The war vessels of several nations have dropped anchor inside, and for the first six months the vessels of Uncle Sam's squadron were in almost constant attendance. During the year the trouble with the Pacific Mail Steamship Co. has been partially won, so that now these steamers call in their coming and going. The first of Uncle Sam's money to be spent on the bay since the old San Diego river dike was built has been expended this year on the quarantine station and wharf on the La Plaza side of the bay. These have been begun, but will need an additional appropriation to finish.
The exports and imports of the bay have not been materiall}' changed from last year, at least in the aggregate. The imports have been general merchandise, coal and cement from foreign ports and lumber from domestic ports. Exports have been of grain and general merchandise, mostly to Lower California and San Francisco.
The growth of the back country increases from year to year, and the material wealth in orchards, vineyards and improved ranches is much larger than at any previous time. In the planting of citrus trees the Chula Vista section leads. Here hundreds of acres have been set to orang(!8 and lemons, while many orchards previously planted are just coming into bearing. La Mesa, just east of [the city, Lemon grove, a little father east, and the Cajon valley have also planted largely of citrus trees, and the Escondido and Perris sections have done their part.
The Mesa Grande, Fallbrook, Elsinore, Perris, Poway, Capitan, Grande and Escondido sections lead in the planting of deciduous trees, and during 1892 those sections shipped dried fruits to the Eastern markets. Each of these localities, besides all other portions of the county, has made preparations to actively enter upon tree-planting this season, and the number of trees to be set out will be considerably over a million during the year ] 893.
The raisin industry has been on the increase, and the shipment, vrhich has aggregated upward of two hundred carloads, an increase of nearly 100 per cent over last year, is likely to increase in a still greater ratio hereafter.
In the matter of irrigation there has been a marked advance during the year, and several districts already formed are moving with success almost in sight. The Linda Vista district, just north of the city, has been successful in issuing bonds and in disposing of a portion of them. The district is now the owner of the water rights, dam sites, and rights of way of the Pamo Water Company, and with the sale of other bonds will be able to place water on the lands and show some of the great advantages of irrigation in southern California. The district has seen the advent of many settlers during the year and much improvement.
Progress is not limited alone to business and advance in values. It is shown in the large increase in the number of wealthy and well-to-do settlers who have found homes in the county. New settlers have come in and purchased land under the line of the San Diego flame, or within reach of the Sweetwater system, and are improving it.. Inside the city limits irrigation has been successfully tried. Lot stakes and block lines in some of the " boom " additions have been plowed up, and the city water system now carries water for the irrigation for some hundreds of acres of lemon orchards.
San Diego appropriately rounds ofif and completes the history of California. The magnificent exhibits made in the Junior Fair at San Diego, during the spring of the World's Fair year, could be fairly duplicated in almost every county in the State. Probably no other could show a tomato tree nine months old, nineteen feet high, and with branches extending to a diameter of twenty-five feet, loaded with bloom and fruit on the first day of February, but all could present wonders as unspeakably strange to the agriculturists of the East, and enough to convince them that the claim of California that this whole State is really " God's own country," is an indisputable fact.