At Summit Station, the loftiest point of the pass over the Sierras, in the path of our railway, engines are changed, and while the train halts passengers amuse themselves by making snowballs. Then we begin the descent along the slopes of the mountains into the great valleys of California. Already we have passed from the region of perpetual snows to a milder clime. We begin to feel the tempered breezes from the Pacific fanning our cheeks. Yes, we are now in the land of a semi-tropical vegetation, a land of beauty and fertility, which in many respects resembles Palestine; and surely it is a Promised Land, rich in God’s good gifts. Blue Canon and Cape Horn and beautiful landscapes with vineyards and orange groves are passed, and as night with its sable pall descends upon us, we rest in peace with a feeling of satisfaction and thankfulness to Him Who has led us safely by the way thus far. When the train halted at Sacramento, I had a midnight view of it, and then we sped on to our destination. Some three weeks later, in company with Rev. Dr. Ashton, I visited the valley west of Sacramento, Suisun and Benicia, that I might not lose the view which night had obscured. The Carquinez Straits, with the railway ferryboat “Solano,” the largest of its kind in the world, and the upper view of the great Bay of San Francisco, make a deep impression on the mind. I was well repaid for all my pains. But on that first night, as we hastened to our goal, amid landscapes of beauty and fruitfulness traversed in the olden days by the feet of pioneers and gold-seekers, it all seemed as if we were in fairyland. Will the dream be substantial when we enter the City by the Golden Gate?
VIEWS FROM THE BOAT ON THE BAY
Arrival at Oakland—“Ticket!”—On the Ferryboat—The City of “Live Oaks”—Mr. Young, a Citizen of Oakland—Distinguished Members of General Convention—Alameda—Berkeley and Its University—Picturesque Scenery—Yerba Buena, Alcatraz and Angel Islands—San Francisco at Last.
It was on the morning of Wednesday, October the second, 1901, when I had my first view of that Queen City of the Pacific coast, San Francisco. Our train, fully nine hours late, in our journey from Salt Lake City, arrived at its destination on the great Oakland pier or mole at 2:30 A.M. The understanding with the conductor the evening before, as we were descending the Sierra Nevada Mountains, was that we would not be disturbed until day break. When the end of our long journey was reached I was oblivious to the world of matter in midnight slumber; but as soon as the wheels of the sleeping coach had ceased to revolve I was aroused with the cry, “Ticket!” First I thought I was dreaming, as I had heard the phrase, “Show your tickets,” so often; but the light of “a lantern dimly burning” and a stalwart figure standing before the curtains of my sleeping berth, soon convinced me that I was in