California eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 127 pages of information about California.

We made a hasty meal from our scanty stock of provisions on the morning of the 6th, and directly it was over—­just as I was about saddling my horse, to start off to visit poor Malcolm—­Don Luis informed me that our companions seemed all to be of opinion that it would be best to share the stock of gold still remaining at once, when those that preferred it could make their way to the settlements, and the others could continue working, if they pleased, on their own account.  I had no objection to offer to this proposition, and the gold was all collected together and weighed.  Bradley undertook the charge of Lacosse’s share, and I was requested to convey Malcolm’s to him.  Altogether we scraped up nearly forty-two pounds weight; for, besides the gold which Don Luis and Bradley had in their saddle-bags, there were a few pounds more belonging to the general stock.  This had to be divided equally, for the gold we had brought from Weber’s Creek had been confided to Malcolm’s charge in a separate bag.  It gave exactly four pounds two ounces a man—­value seven hundred dollars.  This, with six hundred and fifty dollars, my share of the gold deposited with Captain Sutter, and the dust, scales, and lumps, arising from my share of the sale of the cradles, and the produce at the Mormon diggings, before Lacosse and Biggs joined us, would amount, in the whole, to over fifteen hundred dollars.

The greater part of the morning was taken up with squabbles respecting the weighing of the gold.  I took no part in it, and was content to receive just what was allotted to me.  I called McPhail aside, and asked him what it was he intended doing.  He replied, that if any of the others would join him, he would start in pursuit of the men who had plundered us.  He was sorry the old trapper was not here, as, with his assistance, he felt certain the scoundrels might be ferreted out.  Feeling that the journey to poor Malcolm was too dangerous a one to be attempted alone, I was compelled to wait until I could prevail on some of the party to join me.  Don Luis, Jose, Bradley, McPhail, and myself, at length arranged to start off.  Biggs, who was now quite well, preferred waiting behind a few days longer.  Neither Bradshaw nor Bowling were sufficiently recovered to travel.  Story determined to wait until they were well enough to accompany him.  I hardly liked the notion of leaving these four men behind—­only two, or at most three, of them able to protect themselves in the event of their being attacked; still they did not seem to fear the danger:  though, even if they had, most of us had grown so selfish and unaccommodating, that I don’t think they would have met with much sympathy.

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California from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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