John Sutter and a Wider West

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This volume begins with John Sutter's own account of his life and the discovery of gold at his sawmill in 1848. Leading historians Howard R. Lamar, Albert L. Hurtado, Iris H. W. Engstrand, Richard W. White, and Patricia Nelson Limerick then demythologize Sutter while giving him a more secure place in western history.
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Editorial Reviews

California History
"These five essays are well written, lively in their images, and valuable as fresh (even politically correct) interpretations of the familiar, weary tale of Sutter, a man too long glorified at the expense of our knowing and appreciating some of his contemporaries."—California History
Times Literary Supplement
"This admirably balanced, succinct, and polished book concedes only that Sutter was 'the last and most dramatic of a familiar type of frontier entrepreneur who helped develop North America.' Moreover, it was a type that fulfilled its ultimate destiny by failing: succumbing economically to the impact of settlement. Yet the book also suggests that with an airing of the full facts, Sutter is freed from the tedium of his one-dimensional legend and restored to full humanity as a vital and fascinating individual."—Times Literary Supplement
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780803286184
  • Publisher: University of Nebraska Press
  • Publication date: 11/1/2002
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 138
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.36 (d)

Meet the Author

Kenneth N. Owens is a professor emeritus of history at California State University, Sacramento. He is the editor of Riches for All: The California Gold Rush and the World and The Wreck of the Sv. Nikolai, both published by the University of Nebraska Press.
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Table of Contents

Preface to the New Edition
1 General Sutter's Diary 1
2 John Augustus Sutter, Wilderness Entrepreneur 26
3 John A. Sutter and the Indian Business 51
4 John Sutter: A Biographical Examination 76
5 John Sutter and the Natural Word 93
6 John Sutter: Prototype for Failure 111
The Contributors 127
Index 129
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