Eldorado: Adventures in the Path of Empire

Overview

Bayard Taylor was among the thousands of young men who spilled into California in the tumultuous year 1849. He arrived not with pick and shovel but with pen and paper, dispatched by Horace Greeley of the New York Tribune to report on the madness, exuberance, and upheaval of the California gold rush. Traveling throughout the state, Taylor witnessed the explosive growth of San Francisco and the instantaneous creation of Sierra townships. He traversed the nearly deserted lands of the Spanish missions and attended ...
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ELDORADO: Adventures in the path of empire

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Overview

Bayard Taylor was among the thousands of young men who spilled into California in the tumultuous year 1849. He arrived not with pick and shovel but with pen and paper, dispatched by Horace Greeley of the New York Tribune to report on the madness, exuberance, and upheaval of the California gold rush. Traveling throughout the state, Taylor witnessed the explosive growth of San Francisco and the instantaneous creation of Sierra townships. He traversed the nearly deserted lands of the Spanish missions and attended the constitutional convention that set the boundaries and forged the laws for the new state. With wit, intelligence, curiosity, and engaging humor, Taylor chronicled the birth of modern California. He had found "the richest material in the world to work upon," and his account -- combining the skills of a gifted author with the freshness and immediacy of a reporter in the field -- is widely regarded as a classic of western literature.
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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Reprints a firsthand account of the California Gold Rush written by a young journalist from the who traveled throughout the region during the rush, and recorded the birth of modern California. Much of the account addresses the explosive growth of San Francisco from quiet village to booming city. Includes reproductions of period drawings of California before, during and after the invasion of the '49ers. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781890771362
  • Publisher: Heyday Books
  • Publication date: 1/28/2000
  • Series: California Legacy Series
  • Pages: 400
  • Product dimensions: 6.02 (w) x 8.99 (h) x 1.07 (d)

Meet the Author

Bayard Taylor was born in 1825 in Pennsylvania. A relentless writer, he began reading at age four and writing poems at seven. After an apprenticeship with a printer, Taylor approached Horace Greeley of the New-York Tribune and proposed that the newspaper finance his trip to Europe in return for travel letters, which he would later publish as Views A-Foot (1846). After the publication of Eldorado in 1850, Taylor continued to travel the world, becoming secretary of the US delegation in Russia. A few months after being appointed American Minister to Germany, he died at the age of 53 in Berlin, Germany.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix
Foreword xi
Author's Preface 1
1. From New York to Chagres 3
2. Crossing the Isthmus 11
3. Scenes in Panama 23
4. The Pacific Coast of Mexico 27
5. The Coast of California 35
6. First Impressions of San Francisco 44
7. To the San Joaquin, on Muleback 52
8. Camp-life, and a Ride to the Diggings 63
9. The Diggings on Mokelumne River 69
10. A Gallop to Stockton, with Some Words on Law and Society 77
11. A Night Adventure in the Mountains 85
12. San Francisco by Day and Night 92
13. Incidents of a Walk to Monterey 99
14. Life in Monterey 110
15. The State Organization of California 118
16. The Closing Scenes of the Convention 129
17. Shore and Forest 137
18. Old California--Its Missions and Its Lands 145
19. Return to San Francisco 156
20. San Francisco Again 164
21. Sacramento River and City 172
22. Traveling on the Plains 183
23. Journey to the Volcano 192
24. Election Scenes and Mining Characters 202
25. The Rainy Season 209
26. Night in Sacramento City 218
27. The Overland Emigration of 1849 225
28. The Italy of the West 233
29. San Francisco Four Months Later 240
30. Society in California 247
31. Leaving San Francisco 251
32. Mazatlan 260
33. Travel in the Tierra Caliente 266
34. The Ascent to the Tableland 279
35. The Robber Region 288
36. Three Days in Guadalajara 297
37. In the Diligence to Guanajuato 305
38. The Dividing Ridge 312
39. Scenes in the Mexican Capital 316
40. Mexican Politics and Political Men 323
41. Rides to Chapultepec and Guadalupe 330
42. The Base of Popocatepel 336
43. Glimpses of Purgatory and Paradise 342
44. Vera Cruz and San Juan d'Ulloa 350
Appendix Report of Honorable T. Butler King 353
Afterword 399
Notes on the Annotations 407
Author Biography 411
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