May 7th.—On Friday we dined at the house of Don Luis Palo, a Californian gentleman of agreeable manners, whose father held office here under the Spanish government previous to the Mexican Revolution. I believe it is Don Luis’s intention shortly to return to Spain. He is unmarried, and his two sisters are the handsomest women I have yet seen in this country; their beauty is quite of the Spanish style. A dinner in California seems to be always the same—first soup and then beef, dressed in various ways, and seasoned with chillies, fowls, rice, and beans, with a full allowance of pepper and garlic to each dish.
On Saturday we set out on our return, and after two days’ hard riding reached San Francisco to-day at 4, P.M.
An arrival at San Francisco from the gold
Captain Fulsom intends visiting the mine
The first Alcalde and others examine the gold
Parties made up for the diggings
The Government officers propose taking possession of the mine
The Author and his friends decide to visit the Sacramento Valley
A horse is bought
Increase of the gold excitement
Work-people strike work and prepare to move off
Lawyers, storekeepers, and others follow their example
The Author’s journey delayed
Ten dollars a day for a negro waiter
Waiting for a saddler
Don Luis Palo arrives from Monterey on his way to the mines
The report of the Government taking possession of the mines
Desertion of part of the Monterey garrison
Rumoured extent of the mines
The Author and his friends agree to go in company
Return of McPhail
Preparations for the journey
“Gone to the diggings.”
May 8th.—Captain Fulsom called at Sweeting’s to-day. He had seen a man this morning who reported that he had just come from a river called the American Fork, about one hundred miles in the interior, where he had been gold-washing. Captain Fulsom saw the gold he had with him; it was about twenty-three ounces weight, and in small flakes. The man stated that he was eight days getting it, but Captain Fulsom hardly believed this. He says that he saw some of this gold a few weeks since, and thought it was only “mica,” but good judges have pronounced it to be genuine metal. He talks, however, of paying a visit to the place where it is reported to come from. After he was gone Bradley stated that the Sacramento settlements, which Malcolm wished to visit, were in the neighbourhood of the American Fork, and that we might go there together; he thought the distance was only one hundred and twenty miles.