Title: Mark Twain Newspaper Correspondent
       Newspaper Articles 1862-1881
Author: Mark Twain
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Title: Mark Twain Newspaper Correspondent
       Newspaper Articles 1862-1881



Newspaper Articles Written by Mark Twain

Collected from the Archives of Several Newspapers















































































SAN FRANCISCO, May 16, 1863


























































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































Nevada Territory

Territorial Enterprise, October 1, 1862


A GALE.--About 7 o'clock Tuesday evening (Sept. 30th) a sudden blast of
wind picked up a shooting gallery, two lodging houses and a drug store
from their tall wooden stilts and set them down again some ten or twelve
feet back of their original location, with such a degree of roughness as
to jostle their insides into a sort of chaos. There were many guests in
the lodging houses at the time of the accident, but it is pleasant to
reflect that they seized their carpet sacks and vacated the premises
with an alacrity suited to the occasion. No one hurt.

wagons arrived here on Monday evening, and all but five moved on towards
California yesterday. One of the five wagons which will remain in the
city is in charge of a man from Story county, Iowa, who started across
the plains on the 5th of May last, in company with a large train
composed principally of emigrants from his own section. From him we
learn the following particulars: When in the vicinity of Raft river,
this side of Fort Hall, the train was attacked, in broad daylight by
a large body of Snake Indians. The emigrants, taken entirely by
surprise--for they had apprehended no trouble--made but a feeble
resistance, and retreated, with a loss of six men and one woman of their
party. The Indians also captured the teams belonging to thirteen wagons,
together with a large number of loose cattle and horses. The names of
those killed in the affray are as follows: Charles Bulwinkle, from New
York; William Moats, Geo. Adams and Elizabeth Adams, and three others
whose names our informant had forgotten. The survivors were overtaken
on the afternoon by a train numbering 111 wagons, which brought them
through to Humboldt. They occasionally discovered the dead bodies of
emigrants by the roadside; at one time twelve corpses were found, at
another four, and at another two--all minus their scalps. They also saw
the wrecks of many wagons destroyed by the Indians. Shortly after the
sufferers by the fight recorded above had joined the large train, it
was also fired into in the night by a party of Snake Indians, but the
latter, finding themselves pretty warmly received, drew off without
taking a scalp. About a week before these events transpired, a party of
emigrants numbering 40 persons was attacked near City Rocks by the same
tribe of uncivilized pirates. Five young ladies were carried off, and,
it is thought, women and children in all to the number of fifteen.
All the men were killed except one, who made his escape and arrived
at Humboldt about the 20th of September. This train was called the
"Methodist Train," which was not altogether inappropriate, since the
whole party knelt down and began to pray as soon as the attack was
commenced. Every train which has passed over that portion of the route
in the vicinity of City Rocks since the 1st of August has had trouble
with the Indians. When our informant left Humboldt several wagons had
just arrived whose sides and covers had been transformed into magnified
nutmeg-graters by Indian bullets. The Snakes corralled the train, when
a fight ensued, which lasted forty-eight hours. The whites cut their way
out, finally, and escaped. We could not learn the number of killed and
wounded at this battle.

[MORE INDIAN TROUBLES.--] Mr. L. F. Yates, who arrived in this city a
few days since from Pike's Peak, has given us the following particulars
of a fight his train had on the 8th of last August, about one and a-half
miles this side of the junction of the Lander's Cut-off and Fort Bridger
roads. Their train consisted of 15 wagons and 40 men, with a number of
women and children. The train was attacked while passing along a ravine
by a party of Indians being concealed in among a thick growth of poplar
bushes. When the attack commenced, most of the front wagons were some
80 rods in advance. They formed in corral, and intrenched behind their
wagons, refused the slightest aid to those who were struggling with the
savages in the rear. The party thus left to fight their way through the
ambushed Indians numbered but nine men, and there were but four guns
with which to maintain the battle. Five of the nine were killed and one
wounded. The names of the killed are as follows: Parmelee, James Steele,
James A. Hart, Rufus C. Mitchell, from Central City, Colorado Territory,
and McMahan, residence unknown; the name of the man wounded is Frank
Lyman. He was shot through the lungs--recovered. The thirty-one men
who were hidden snugly behind their wagons, with a single honorable
exception, refused to render the slightest assistance to those who were
fighting for their lives and the lives of their families so near them.
Although they had 27 guns they refused to lend a single gun, when at
one time four men went to ask assistance. The cowards all clung to
their arms, and lay trembling behind their wagons. A man named Perry, or
Berry, was the only one who had sufficient courage to attempt to render
his struggling friends any assistance. He was shot in the face before
reaching the rear wagons, and was carried back to the corral. The fight
lasted nearly two hours, and some seven or eight Indians were killed, as
at various times they charged out of the bushes on their ponies. Several
Indian horses were killed, and at length the few left alive fought
through to where their thirty heroic friends (?) were corraled, leaving
the killed and two wagons in possession of the Indians. Thirty bigger
cowards and meaner men than those above mentioned never crossed the
plains; we are certain that every man of them left the States for fear
of being drafted into the army.

Territorial Enterprise, October 4, 1862


A petrified man was found some time ago in the mountains south of
Gravelly Ford. Every limb and feature of the stony mummy was perfect,
not even excepting the left leg, which has evidently been a wooden one
during the lifetime of the owner--which lifetime, by the way, came to
a close about a century ago, in the opinion of a savan who has examined
the defunct. The body was in a sitting posture, and leaning against
a huge mass of croppings; the attitude was pensive, the right thumb
resting against the side of the nose; the left thumb partially supported
the chin, the fore-finger pressing the inner corner of the left eye and
drawing it partly open; the right eye was closed, and the fingers of the
right hand spread apart. This strange freak of nature created a profound
sensation in the vicinity, and our informant states that by request,
Justice Sewell or Sowell, of Humboldt City, at once proceeded to the
spot and held an inquest on the body. The verdict of the jury was that
"deceased came to his death from protracted exposure," etc. The people
of the neighborhood volunteered to bury the poor unfortunate, and were
even anxious to do so; but it was discovered, when they attempted to
remove him, that the water which had dripped upon him for ages from the
crag above, had coursed down his back and deposited a limestone sediment
under him which had glued him to the bed rock upon which he sat, as
with a cement of adamant, and Judge S. refused to allow the charitable
citizens to blast him from his position. The opinion expressed by
his Honor that such a course would be little less than sacrilege, was
eminently just and proper. Everybody goes to see the stone man, as many
as three hundred having visited the hardened creature during the past
five or six weeks.

Territorial Enterprise, late October, 1862


This comprises one hundred feet of the great Comstock lead, and is
situated in the midst of the Ophir claims. We visited it yesterday, in
company with Mr. Kingman, Assistant Superintendent, and our impression
is that stout-legged people with an affinity to darkness, may spend
an hour or so there very comfortably. A confused sense of being buried
alive, and a vague consciousness of stony dampness, and huge timbers,
and tortuous caverns, and bottomless holes with endless ropes hanging
down into them, and narrow ladders climbing in a short twilight through
the colossal lattice work and suddenly perishing in midnight, and
workmen poking about in the gloom with twinkling candles--is all, or
nearly all that remains to us of our experience in the Spanish mine.
Yet, for the information of those who may wish to go down and see how
things are conducted in the realms beyond the jurisdiction of daylight,
we are willing to tell a portion of what we know about it. Entering
the Spanish tunnel in A street, you grope along by candle light for two
hundred and fifty feet--but you need not count your steps--keep on going
until you come to a horse. This horse works a whim used for hoisting ore
from the infernal regions below, and from long service in the dark,
his coat has turned to a beautiful black color. You are now upon the
confines of the ledge, and from this point several drifts branch out to
different portions of the mine. Without stopping to admire these gloomy
grottoes you descend a ladder and halt upon a landing where you are
fenced in with an open-work labyrinth of timbers some eighteen inches
square, extending in front of you and behind you, and far away above you
and below you, until they are lost in darkness. These timbers are framed
in squares or "stations," five feet each way, one above another, and
so neatly put together that there is not room for the insertion of a
knife-blade where they intersect. You are apt to wonder where the forest
around you came from, and how they managed to get it into that hole, and
what sums of money it must have cost, and so forth and so on, and you
wind up with a confused notion that the man who designed it all had
a shining talent for saw mills on a large scale. He could build the
frame-work beautifully at any rate. Whereupon, you desist from further
speculation, and waltz down a very narrow winding staircase, and the
further you squirm down it the dizzier you get and the more those open
timber squares seem to whiz by you, until you feel as if you are falling
through a well-ventilated shot-tower with the windows all open.

Finally, after you have gone down ninety-four feet, you touch bottom
again and find yourself in the midst of the saw mill yet, with the
regular accomplishments of workmen, and windlasses, and glimmering
candles and cetera, as usual. Now you can stoop and dodge about under
the "stations," and get your clothes dirty, and drip hot candle grease
all over your hands, and find out how they take those timbers and
commence at the top of the mine, and build them together like mighty
window sashes all the way down to the bottom of it; and if, after
coming down that tipsy staircase, you can by any possibility make out to
understand it, then you can render the information useful above ground
by building the third story of your house to suit you first, and
continuing its erection wrong end foremost until you wind up with the
cellar. You will also find out that at this depth the lead is forty-six
feet wide, with its sides walled and weather boarded as compactly and
substantially as those of a jail. And here and there in little recesses,
the walls of the lead are laid bare, showing the blue silver lines
traced upon the white quartz, after the fashion of variegated
marble--this, in places, you know, while others, where the ore is
richer, the blue predominates and the white is scarcely perceptible.
From these various recesses a swarm of workmen are constantly conveying
wheel-barrow loads of quartz to the windlasses, of all shades of value,
from that worth $75 to that worth $3,000 per ton--and if you should
chance to be in better luck than we were, you may happen to stumble on
a small specimen worth a dollar and a half a pound. Such things have
occurred in the Spanish mine before now. However, as we were saying, you
are now one hundred and seventy feet under the ground, and you can
move about and see how the ore is quarried and moved from one place to
another, and how systematically the great mine is arranged and worked
altogether, and how unsystematically the Mexicans used to carry on
business down there--and you may get into a bucket, if you please, and
extend your visit to the confines of purgatory--so to speak--if you
feel anxious to do so; but as this would afford you nothing more than a
glance at the bottom of a drain shaft, you could better employ your time
and talents in climbing that cork screw and seeking daylight again. And
before leaving the mouth of the tunnel, you would do well to visit the
office of Mr. Beckwith, the superintendent, where you can see a
small cabinet of specimens from the mine which has been pronounced by
scientific travelers to be one of the richest collections of the kind
in the world. We shall have occasion to speak of the steam hoisting
apparatus now in process of erection by the Spanish Company at an early

Territorial Enterprise, November 1-10, 1862


THE PETRIFIED MAN.--Mr. Herr Weisnicht has just arrived in Virginia City
from the Humboldt mines and regions beyond. He brings with him the head
and one foot of the petrified man, lately found in the mountains near
Gravelly Ford. A skillful assayer has analyzed a small portion of dirt
found under the nail of the great toe and pronounces the man to have
been a native of the Kingdom of New Jersey. As a trace of "speculation"
is still discernible in the left eye, it is thought the man was on his
way to what is now the Washoe mining region for the purpose of locating
the Comstock. The remains brought in are to be seen in a neat glass
case in the third story of the Library Building, where they have been
temporarily placed by Mr. Weisnicht for the inspection of the curious,
and where they may be examined by any one who will take the trouble to
visit them.

Territorial Enterprise, December 1862


December 5, 1862

EDITOR ENTERPRISE: If your readers are not aware of the fact, I take
pleasure in informing them that the [Nevada] Supreme Court will meet
in Carson City on the 13th of the present month; and in connection
with this intelligence I present the following item, giving it in the
language in which I received it for fear of mistakes--for its terms are
darkly, mysteriously legal, and I have not the most distant conception
of what they mean, or what they are intended to have reference to--thus:
"Wm. Alford vs. Nathaniel Dewing et als.--Ordered filed, denying
rehearing." There it is, and I wash my hands of the matter. I don't know
Alford, and I don't know Dewing, and I don't know Et Als--and I never
heard of either, or any of these gentlemen until this very day, when the
Clerk of the Supreme Court brought me this written nightmare, which has
been distressing me up to the present moment. If it is a charge, I
do not make it; if it is an insinuation, I do not endorse it; if its
expression less exterior conceals a slur, I do not father it. I simply
publish the document as I received it, and take no responsibility upon
myself for the consequences. I do not wish these gentlemen any harm;
I would not willingly and knowingly do them the slightest possible
wrong--yet, if they ought to be filed--mind, I say if they ought to be
filed--if it is entirely right and proper that they should be filed--if,
in the opinion of the people of this commonwealth, it is deemed
necessary to file them--then, I say, let them be filed and be d----[here
the manuscript was illegible.--ED.] Now you have the document and the
facts in the case; and if there be a fault in the matter it is the
Clerk's, and I know what that Chinaman did it for. [If you have
forgotten the circumstance, I said in a letter that he had been cast for
a Chinaman in the recent tableaux here.]

The Roads and Highways bill was considered in Committee of the Whole
in the House yesterday. A clause in it provides for a tax of $4 on each
voter, or a day's work on the roads in lieu thereof. Storey was relieved
from the payment of this tax, which was entirely proper, since there is
not a free road in the whole county.

These grave and reverend legislators relax a little occasionally, and
indulge in chaste and refined jollity to a small extent. Col. Williams
is engineering a certain toll road franchise through the House, and the
other night he was laying before the Committee on Internal Improvements
some facts in the case, pending which he had occasion to illustrate his
theme with pencil and paper, and the result was a map, which, in view of
its grandeur of conception, elegance of design and masterly execution,
I feel justified in styling miraculous. Mr. Lovejoy, Chairman of the
Committee, captured it, incorporated it into his report, and presented
it before the House yesterday, thus:


Map of Col. Williams' road "from a certain point to another place," as
drawn by himself, and which was conclusive evidence to your Committee:

Your committee would ask that it be referred to Col. Howard of the
Storey county delegation.

[Signed] LOVEJOY, Chairman

ACKLEY, Sec y.

It was so referred by the Speaker.

Col. Howard will report to-day. I have procured a copy of the
forthcoming document, and transmit it herewith.


Your committee, consisting of a solitary but very competent individual,
to whom was referred Col. Williams' road from a certain point to another
place, would beg most respectfully to report:

Your committee has had under consideration said map.

The word map is derived from the Spanish word "mapa," or the Portuguese
word "mappa." Says the learned lexicographer Webster, "in geography a
map is a representation of the surface of the earth, or any part of it,
drawn on paper or other material, exhibiting the lines of latitude and
longitude, and the positions of countries, kingdoms, states, mountains,
rivers, etc."

Your committee, with due respect to the projector of the road in
question, would designate what is styled in the report a map, an
unnatural and diabolical scrawl, devoid of form, regularity or meaning.
Your committee has in times past witnessed the wild irregularity of the
footprints of birds of prey upon a moist sea shore. Your committee was
struck with the strong resemblance of the map under discussion to some
one of said footprints.

Your committee, during his juvenile days, has watched a frantic and
indiscreet fly emerge from a pot or vase containing molasses; your
committee has seen said fly alight upon a scrap of virgin paper, and
leave thereon a wild medley of wretched and discordant tracks; your
committee was struck with the wonderful resemblance of said fly-tracks
to the map now before your committee.

Yet your committee believes that the map in question has some merit as
an abstract hieroglyphic.

Your committee, therefore, recommends, the Council concurring, that the
aforesaid map be photographed, and that one copy thereof, framed in
sage brush, be hung over the Speaker's chair, and that another copy be
donated to the Council, to be suspended over the chair of the President
of that body, as a memento of the artistic skill and graphic genius of
one of our most distinguished members--a guide to all future Pi-Utes.
All of which is respectfully submitted.

HOWARD, Chairman and Sole Committee

A resolution passed the House yesterday, authorizing the Secretary
of the Territory to purchase and preserve files of the various papers
published in the Territory.

Territorial Enterprise, December 1862


December 12, 1862

EDITORS ENTERPRISE: Ormsby heads the world on the turnip question. The
vegetable upon which I base this boast, was grown in the turnip
garden of Mr. S. D. Fairchild, back here towards King's Canyon--in the
suburbs--say about eight squares from the plaza. Mr. Fairchild left it
at the 'branch of the ENTERPRISE office in Carson, a day or two
since. The monster was accurately surveyed, with the following result:
circumference, forty inches; weight, a fraction over eighteen pounds.

Col. Williams, of the House, who says I mutilate his eloquence,
addressed a note to me this morning, to the effect that I had given his
constituents wrong impressions concerning him, and nothing but blood
would satisfy him. I sent him that turnip on a hand barrow, requesting
him to extract from it a sufficient quantity of blood to restore his
equilibrium--which I regarded as a very excellent joke. Col. Williams
ate it (raw) during the usual prayer by the chaplain. To sum up:
eighteen pounds of raw turnip is sufficient for an ordinary lunch--Col.
Williams had his feet on his desk at the time--he beamed--wherefore, I
think his satisfaction was complete.

Carson also boasts the only pork-packing establishment in Nevada
Territory. Mr. George T. Davis is the proprietor thereof, and he has
already killed and packed two hundred and fifty fine hogs this winter.
This will be cheering news to the young lady who told me the other
evening that she "loved pork."

The pleasantest affair of the season, perhaps, although not the most
gorgeous, was the "candy-pull" at the White House, a few nights ago.
The candy had not finished cooking at nine o'clock, so they concluded to
dance awhile. They always dance here when they have time. I have noticed
it frequently. I think it is a way they have. They got a couple of
able-bodied fiddlers and went at it. They opened with the dance called
the plain quadrille, which is very simple and easy, and is performed in
this wise: All you have to do is to stand up in the middle of the floor,
being careful to get your lady on your right hand side, and yourself on
the left hand side of your lady. Then you are all right you know. When
you hear a blast of music like unto the rush of many waters, you lay
your hand on your stomach and bow to the lady of your choice then you
turn around and bow to the fiddlers. The first order is, "First couple
fore and aft"--or words to that effect. This is very easy. You have
only to march straight across the house--keeping out of the way of the
advancing couple, who very seldom know where they are going to--and when
you get over, if you find your partner there, swing her; if you don't,
hunt her up--for it is very handy to have a partner in these plain
quadrilles. The next order is, "Ladies change." This is an exceedingly
difficult figure, and requires great presence of mind; because, on
account of shaking hands with the lobby members so much, and from the
force of human nature also, you are morally certain to offer your right,
when the chances are that your left hand is wanted. This has a tendency
to mix things. At this point order and regularity cease the dancers get
excited--the musicians become insane--turmoil and confusion ensue--chaos
comes again! Put your trust in Providence and stick to your partner.
Several of these engaging and beautiful plain quadrilles were danced
during the evening, and we might have enjoyed several more, but the
rostrum broke down and spilt the musicians. I was exceedingly delighted
with the waltz, and also with the polka. These differ in name, but there
the difference ceases--the dances are precisely the same. You have only
to spin around with frightful velocity and steer clear of the furniture.
This has a charming and bewildering effect. You catch glimpses of a
confused and whirling multitude of people, and above them a row of
distracted fiddlers extending entirely around the room. The waltz
and the polka are very exhilarating--to use a mild term--amazingly

Nothing occurred to mar the joyousness of the occasion. The party was
very select except myself and Col. Williams; the candy was not burned;
the Governor sat down on a hot stove and got up again with great
presence of mind; the dancing was roomy and hilarious, and fun went to
waste. Henceforward my principles are fixed. I am a stern and unwavering
advocate of "candy-pulls."

There was a slight conflagration in Mr. Helm's office yesterday
morning--at least I was told so by my friend, the reporter for the
Virginia Union, who is not very reliable. He also stated that no damage
was done; but I don't put much confidence in what he says.

The ladies have not smiled much on this Legislature, so far. Thirty-two
of our loveliest visited the halls night before last, though, which
is an encouraging symptom. I cannot conscientiously say they smiled,
however, for the Revenue bill was before the House. This cheerful
subject is calculated to produce inward jollity, but the same is not apt
to blossom into smiles on the surface. The ladies were well pleased with
the night session, though--they enjoyed it exceedingly--in many respects
it was much superior to a funeral. The Revenue bill was finished up last
night, and in the name and at the request of the members, I invite
all the ladies in town to call again, at any time, either day or night
session. That Revenue bill was one of those nonsensical general public
concerns that we are not used to; but the fun will be resumed right
away, now that we are back on our regular toll roads again.

I went down to Empire City yesterday to see the Eagle Fire Company try
their new engine (by the way, you have, so far, neglected to mention
either the machine or the company in your paper). They first threw
an inch and a quarter stream over Dutch Nick's hotel, and then a
three-quarter inch stream over the liberty pole. This brought cheers
from the multitude (there were many ladies there from neighboring
cities). The boys grew excited and ambitious. Several ladies passed
by, wearing the new fashioned light-house bonnets. The Eagles, in their
madness, attempted to throw a half-inch stream over those bonnets. They
puffed their cheeks and strained every nerve; there was a moment
of painful suspense, as the pearly column went towering toward the
clouds--then a long, loud, reverberating shout, as it bent gracefully
and went over, without touching a feather! But the engine broke.

If McCluskey, of the Delta Saloon, could send me a reporter's
cobbler--an unusually long one--I think it would relieve my cold.

Territorial Enterprise, December 13-19, 1862


Ah, well--it is touching to see these knotty and rugged old
pioneers--who have beheld Nevada in her infancy, and toiled through her
virgin sands unmolested by toll-keepers; and prospected her unsmiling
hills, and knocked at the doors of her sealed treasure vaults; and
camped with her horned-toads, and tarantulas and lizards, under her
inhospitable sage brush; and smoked the same pipe; and imbibed lightning
out of the same bottle; and eaten their regular bacon and beans from the
same pot; and lain down to their rest under the same blanket--happy, and
lousy and contented--yea, happier and lousier and more contented
than they are this day, or may be in the days that are to come; it is
touching, I say, to see these weather-beaten and blasted old patriarchs
banding together like a decaying tribe, for the sake of the privations
they have undergone, and the dangers they have met--to rehearse the
deeds of the hoary past, and rescue its traditions from oblivion!
The Pah-Ute Association will become a high and honorable order in the
land--its certificate of membership a patent of nobility. I extend unto
the fraternity the right hand of a poor but honest half-breed, and say
God speed your sacred enterprise.

Territorial Enterprise, December 1862

[extracts from original]


Carson, Midnight December 23d.

Eds., Enterprise:

On the last night of the session, Hon. Thomas Hannah announced that a
Grand Bull Drivers' Convention would assemble in Washoe City, on the
22d, to receive Hon. Jim Sturtevant and the other members of the Washoe
delegation. I journeyed to the place yesterday to see that the ovation
was properly conducted. I traveled per stage. The Unreliable of the
Union went also--for the purpose of distorting the facts. The weather
was delightful. It snowed the entire day. The wind blew such a hurricane
that the coach drifted sideways from one toll road to another, and
sometimes utterly refused to mind her helm. It is a fearful thing to
be at sea in a stagecoach. We were anxious to get to Washoe by four
o'clock, but luck was against us: we were delayed by stress of weather;
we were hindered by the bad condition of the various toll roads; we
finally broke the after spring of the wagon, and had to lay up for
repairs. Therefore we only reached Washoe at dusk. Messrs. Lovejoy,
Howard, Winters, Sturtevant, and Speaker Mills had left Carson ahead of
us, and we found them in the city. They had not beaten us much, however,
as I could perceive by their upright walk and untangled conversation.
At 6 P.M., the Carson City Brass Band, followed by the Committee of
Arrangements, and the Chairman of the Convention, and the delegation,
and the invited guests, and the citizens generally, and the hurricane,
marched up one of the most principal streets, and filed in imposing
procession into Foulke's Hall. The delegation, and the guests, and the
band, were provided with comfortable seats near the Chairman's desk, and
the constituency occupied the body-pews. The delegation and the guests
stood up and formed a semicircle, and Mr. Gregory introduced them one
at a time to the constituency. Mr. Gregory did this with much grace and
dignity, albeit he affected to stammer and gasp, and hesitate, and
look colicky, and miscall the names, and miscall them again by way of
correcting himself, and grab desperately at invisible things in the
air--all with a charming pretense of being scared.

The Hon. John K. Lovejoy arose in his place and blew his horn. He made
honorable mention of the Legislature and the Committee on Internal
Improvements. He told how the fountains of their great deep were broken
up, and they rained forty days and forty nights, and brought on a flood
of toll roads over the whole land. He explained to them that the more
toll roads there were, the more competition there would be, and the
roads would be good, and tolls moderate in consequence.

Mr. Speaker Mills responded to the numerous calls for him, and spoke
so well in praise of the Washoe delegation that I was constrained to
believe that there really was some merit in the deceased.

Hon. Theodore Winters next addressed the people. He said he went to the
Legislature with but one solitary object in view--the securing to this
Territory of an incorporation law. How he had succeeded, the people
themselves could tell...

The Chairman, Mr. Gaston, introduced Colonel Howard, and that gentleman
addressed the people in his peculiarly grave and dignified manner. The
constituency gave way to successive cataracts of laughter, which was
singularly out of keeping with the stern seriousness of the speaker's
bearing. He spoke about ten minutes, and then took his seat, in spite of
the express wish of the audience that he should go on.

Hon. Jim Sturtevant next addressed the citizens, extemporaneously. He
made use of the very thunder which I meant to launch at the populace.
Owing to this unfortunate circumstance, I was forced to keep up an
intelligent silence during the session of the convention...

After this the assemblage broke up and adjourned to take something to
drink. At nine o'clock the band again summoned the public to Foulke's
Hall, and I proceeded to that place. I found the Unreliable there, and
George Hepperly. I had requested Mr. Hepperly, as a personal favor, to
treat the Unreliable with distinguished consideration and I am proud
and happy to acknowledge he had done so. He had him in charge of two

The Hall had been cleared of the greater part of its benches, and the
ball was ready to commence. The citizens had assembled in force, and the
sexes were pretty equally represented in the proportion of one lady
to several gentlemen. The night was so infernally inclement--so to
speak--that it was impossible for ladies who lived at any considerable
distance to attend. However, those that were there appeared in
every quadrille, and with exemplary industry. I did not observe any
wallflowers--the climate of Washoe appears to be unsuited to that kind
of vegetation.

In accordance with the customs of the country, they indulged in the
plain quadrille at this ball. And notwithstanding the vicissitudes
which I have seen that wonderful national dance pass through, I solemnly
affirm that they sprung some more new figures on me last night. However,
the ball was a very pleasant affair. We could muster four sets and still
have a vast surplusage of gentlemen--but the strictest economy had to be
observed in order to make the ladies hold out.

The supper and the champagne were excellent and abundant, and I offer no
word of blame against anybody for eating and drinking pretty freely. If
I were to blame anybody, I would commence with the Unreliable--for he
drank until he lost all sense of etiquette. I actually found myself in
bed with him with my boots on. However, as I said before, I cannot blame
the cuss; it was a convivial occasion, and his little shortcomings ought
to be overlooked. When I went to bed this morning, Mr. Lovejoy, arrayed
in fiery red night clothes, was dancing the war dance of his tribe (he
is President of the Paiute Association) around a spittoon and Colonel
Howard, dressed in a similar manner, was trying to convince him that
he was a humbug. A suspicion crossed my mind that they were partially
intoxicated, but I could not be sure about it on account of everything
appearing to turn around so. I left Washoe City this morning at nine
o'clock, fully persuaded that I would like to go back there again when
the next convention meets.

Territorial Enterprise, December 28, 1862


Old Dan is gone, that good old soul, we ne'er shall see him more--for
some time. He left for Carson yesterday, to be duly stamped and shipped
to America, by way of the United States Overland Mail. As the stage was
on the point of weighing anchor, the senior editor dashed wildly into
Wasserman's and captured a national flag, which he cast about Dan's
person to the tune of three rousing cheers from the bystanders. So,
with the gorgeous drapery floating behind him, our kind and genial hero
passed from our sight; and if fervent prayers from us, who seldom pray,
can avail, his journey will be as safe and happy as though ministering
angels watched over him. Dan has gone to the States for his health, and
his family. He worked himself down in creating big strikes in the mines
and keeping all the mills in this district going, whether their owners
were willing or not. These herculean labors gradually undermined his
health, but he went bravely on, and we are proud to say that as far as
these things were concerned, he never gave up--the miners never did, and
never could have conquered him. He fell under a scarcity of pack-trains
and hay wagons. These had been the bulwark of the local column; his
confidence in them was like unto that which men have in four aces;
murders, robberies, fires, distinguished arrivals, were creatures
of chance, which might or might not occur at any moment; but the
pack-trains and the hay-wagons were certain, predestined, immutable!
When these failed last week, he said "Et tu Brute," and gave us his
pen. His constitution suddenly warped, split and went under, and Daniel
succumbed. We have a saving hope, though, that his trip across the
Plains, through eighteen hundred miles of cheerful hay stacks, will so
restore our loved and lost to his ancient health and energy, that when
he returns next fall he will be able to run our five hundred mills
as easily as he used to keep five-score moving. Dan is gone, but he
departed in a blaze of glory, the like of which hath hardly been seen
upon this earth since the blameless Elijah went up in his fiery chariot.

Territorial Enterprise, December 30-31, 1862


OUR STOCK REMARKS.--Owing to the fact that our stock reporter attended
a wedding last evening, our report of transactions in that branch of
robbery and speculation is not quite as complete and satisfactory
as usual this morning. About eleven o'clock last night the aforesaid
remarker pulled himself upstairs by the banisters, and stumbling over
the stove, deposited the following notes on our table, with the remark:
"S(hic)am, just 'laberate this, w(hic)ill, yer?" We said we would, but
we couldn't. If any of our readers think they can, we shall be pleased
to see the translation. Here are the notes: "Stocks brisk, and Ophir
has taken this woman for your wedded wife. Some few transactions have
occurred in rings and lace veils, and at figures tall, graceful and
charming. There was some inquiry late in the day for parties who would
take them for better or for worse but there were few offers. There seems
to be some depression in this stock. We mentioned yesterday that our
Father which art in heaven. Quotations of lost reference, and now I lay
me down to sleep," &c., &c., &c.

BOARD OF EDUCATION.--In accordance with a law passed at the late session
of the legislature, a Board of Education is to be organized in each of
the several counties. The Storey county Board will be composed of seven
members, apportioned as follows: Four from Virginia, two from Gold Hill,
and one from Flowery. The Chairman of the Board will be County School
Superintendent. These officers will have power to issue bonds sufficient
to defray the expenses of the schools, from the 1st of January until the
1st of November; to establish schools of all grades, engage and examine
teachers, etc. The election for the Board of Education will be held
next Monday, at the Court House, in Virginia; at the Postoffice, in Gold
Hill, and at the house of I. W. Knox, in Flowery, the polls to be open
from 8 o'clock in the morning until 6 in the evening. The Board will
meet and organize on the Monday following their election.

BLOWN DOWN.--At sunset yesterday, the wind commenced blowing after a
fashion to which a typhoon is mere nonsense, and in a short time the
face of heaven was obscured by vast clouds of dust all spangled over
with lumber, and shingles, and dogs and things. There was no particular
harm in that, but the breeze soon began to work damage of a serious
nature. Thomas Moore's new frame house on the east side of C street,
above the Court House, was blown down, and the fire-wall front of a one
story brick building higher up the street was also thrown to the ground.
The latter house was occupied as a store by Mr. Heldman, and owned by
Mr. Felton. The storm was very severe for a while, and we shall not be
surprised to hear of further destruction having been caused by it. The
damage resulting to Mr. Heldman's grocery store, amounts to $2,200.

AT HOME.--Judge Brumfield's nightmare--the Storey county
delegation--have straggled in, one at a time, until they are all at home
once more. Messrs. Mills, Mitchell, Meagher and Minneer returned several
days ago, and we had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Davenport, also,
yesterday. We do not know how long the latter gentleman has been here,
but we offer him the unlimited freedom of the city, any how. Justice
to a good representative is justice, you know, whether it be tardy or

THE SCHOOL.--Mr. Mellvile's school will open again next Monday, and in
the meantime the new furniture is being put up in the school house. The
Virginia Cadets (a company composed of Mr. Mellvile's larger pupils,)
will appear in public on New Year's Day, the weather permitting, armed
and equipped as the law directs. The boys were pretty proficient in
their military exercises when we saw them last, and they have probably
not deteriorated since then.

SAD ACCIDENT.--We learn from Messrs. Hatch &. Bro., who do a heavy
business in the way of supplying this market with vegetables, that
the rigorous weather accompanying the late storm was so severe on the
mountains as to cause a loss of life in several instances. Two sacks
of sweet potatoes were frozen to death on the summit, this side of
Strawberry. The verdict rendered by the coroner's jury was strictly in
accordance with the facts.

THRILLING ROMANCE.--On our first page, to-day, will be found the opening
chapters of a thrilling tale, entitled "An Act to amend and supplemental
to an Act to provide for Assessing and Collecting County and Territorial
Revenue." This admirable story was written especially for the columns of
this paper by several distinguished authors. We have secured a few more
productions of the same kind, at great expense, and we design publishing
them in their regular order. Our readers will agree with us that it
will redound considerably to their advantage to read and preserve these

FIRE, ALMOST.--The roof of the New York Restaurant took fire from the
stovepipe, yesterday morning, and but for the timely discovery of the
fact, a serious conflagration would have ensued, as the restaurant is
situated in a nest of frame houses, which would have burned like tinder.
As it was, nothing but a few shingles were damaged.

PRIVATE PARTY.--The members of Engine Co. No. 2, with a number of
invited guests, are to have a little social dance at La Plata Hall, this
evening. They have made every arrangement for having a pleasant time
of it, and we hope they may succeed to the very fullest extent of their

Territorial Enterprise, January 1, 1863


Are we to be scared to death every time we venture into the street? May
we be allowed to go quietly about our business, or are we to be assailed
at every corner by fearful apparitions? As we were plodding home at the
ghostly hour last night, thinking about the haunted house humbug, we
were suddenly riveted to the pavement in a paroxysm of terror by that
blue and yellow phantom who watches over the destinies of the shooting
gallery, this side of the International. Seen in daylight, placidly
reclining against his board in the doorway, with his blue coat, and his
yellow pants, and his high boots, and his fancy hat, just lifted from
his head, he is rather an engaging youth, than otherwise; but at dead
of night, when he pops out his pallid face at you by candle light, and
stares vacantly upon you with his uplifted hat and the eternal civility
of his changeless brow, and the ghostliness of his general appearance
heightened by that grave-stone inscription over his stomach, "to-day
shooting for chickens here," you are apt to think of spectres starting
up from behind tomb-stones, and you weaken accordingly--the cold chills
creep over you--your hair stands on end--you reverse your front, and
with all possible alacrity, you change your base.

Territorial Enterprise, January 1, 1863


Now is the accepted time to make your regular annual good resolutions.
Next week you can begin paving hell with them as usual. Yesterday,
everybody smoked his last cigar, took his last drink, and swore his last
oath. To-day, we are a pious and exemplary community. Thirty days from
now, we shall have cast our reformation to the winds and gone to cutting
our ancient short comings considerably shorter than ever. We shall also
reflect pleasantly upon how we did the same old thing last year about
this time. However, go in, community. New Year's is a harmless annual
institution, of no particular use to anybody save as a scapegoat for
promiscuous drunks, and friendly calls, and humbug resolutions, and we
wish you to enjoy it with a looseness suited to the greatness of the

Territorial Enterprise, January 4, 1863


[first lines not recovered]

... benevolent enterprise, and to be present and see such a phenomenon,
would be well worth the price of the ticket--six dollars, supper
included. Wherefore, we advise every citizen of Storey to go to the
ball--early--and stand ready to enjoy the joke. The fun to be acquired
in this way, for a trifling sum of money, cannot be computed by any
system of mathematics known to the present generation. And the more the
merrier. We all know that a thousand people can enjoy that failure more
extensively than a smaller number. Mr. Unger has tendered the use of the
large dining hall of the What Cheer House (nearly opposite the La Plata
Hall) with all the necessary table ware, and the waiters employed in
the hotel, free of charge. This generosity--this liberality in a
noble cause--calls for a second from somebody. Get your contributions
ready--money, wines, cakes, and knicknacks and substantials of all
kinds--and when the ladies call for them, deliver your offerings with
a grace and dignity graduated by the market value of the same, the
condition of your pecuniary affairs, and the sympathy you feel for
maimed and suffering humanity. The ladies may be looked for to-morrow.

ELECTION.--To-morrow morning, at eight o'clock, the polls will be opened
at the Court House, on C street, for the election of the four members of
the County Board of Education to which Virginia is entitled. Gold Hill
is entitled to two members, and Flowery to one. In the former place, the
polls will be at the Post Office, and in the latter at the house of Mr.
I. W. Knox. The Board will meet and organize on the Monday following
their election. They will have power to issue bonds for a sum sufficient
to defray the expenses of the respective schools of the county, from the
beginning of the present month until the first of November. They will
also have power to establish schools of all grades, engage and
examine teachers, etc. The Chairman of the Board will be County School
Superintendent. Let those who feel interested in school matters go and
deposit their opinions in the ballot-box to-morrow.

PUBLIC SCHOOL.--The juveniles are hereby notified to put away their
sleds and doll-babies and go into the traces again, at Mr. Mellvile's
school-house, corner of E and Washington streets, to-morrow morning,
at 10 o'clock. The pupils used to learn fast under the old regime of
puritanical straight-back benches. We shall expect the new chairs
and desks to impart a telegraphic celerity to their improvement

NEW YEARS EXTENSION.--Yesterday was New Years Day for the ladies. We
kept open house, and were called upon by seventy-two ladies--all young
and handsome. This stunning popularity is pleasant to reflect upon, but
we are afraid some people will think it prevented us from scouting for
local matters with our usual avidity. This is a mistake; if anything
had happened within the county limits yesterday, those ladies would have
mentioned it.

SUPREME COURT.--Gen. Williams finished his long and able argument in the
Chollar and Potosi case, at a late hour last night. This was the closing
speech. It is said that the Supreme Court cannot reasonably be expected
to render a decision in this important case before the end of the
present month.

BALL IN CARSON.--Just as we are going to press, we learn that Mrs.
Williamson is to give a ball at the White House in Carson City, next
Thursday evening. We have no particulars, but we suppose that one of
those pleasant, sociable affairs, which are Mrs. Williamson's specialty,
is in contemplation.

MASS.--Rev. Father Manogue notifies the Roman Catholics of Carson City
that Mass will be celebrated there this forenoon at 11 o'clock. We
presume that this service will take place at Miss Clapp's school house,
as it has been used by that denomination for some time past as a chapel.

FIREMEN'S MEETING.--The Virginia Engine Company will hold a meeting at
the engine house, A street, on Tuesday evening, January 6th, for the
purpose of electing officers to serve during the present year.

RECORDER'S COURT.--Business in this institution is still feeble. Only
one case yesterday--a scion of the noble house of Howard--Christian
name, John Doe, d. d., fined ten dollars and costs--paid the same and
was discharged.

Territorial Enterprise, January 6, 1863


FREE FIGHT.--A beautiful and ably conducted free fight came off in C
street yesterday afternoon, but as nobody was killed or mortally wounded
in a manner sufficiently fatal to cause death, no particular interest
attaches to the matter, and we shall not publish the details. We pine
for murder--these fist fights are of no consequence to anybody.

Humboldt stocks are plenty in the market, at figures which we have
no doubt are low for the claims. The want of buyers is probably
attributable to the indefinite knowledge of these claims. There
are unquestionably many valuable ledges in the district offered at
exceedingly low prices.

The old friends and acquaintances of Jno. D. Kinney (who came to Nevada
Territory with Chief Justice Turner, and who returned to the States last
March,) will be gratified to learn that that sterling patriot is now a
captain in the Seventh Ohio Cavalry.

Milstead, who murdered a man named Varney, some time ago, near Ragtown,
in Humboldt county, will be hung in Dayton next Friday.

James Leconey, W. H. Barstow, Jas. Phelan and John A. Collins were
elected members of the Board of Education at Virginia.

Territorial Enterprise, January 8, 1863

[written after having his hat stolen]


We have been suffering from the seven years' itch for many months. It
is probably the most aggravating disease in the world. It is contagious.
That man has commenced a career of suffering which is frightful to
contemplate; there is no cure for the distemper--it must run its course;
there is no respite for its victim, and but little alleviation of its
torments to be hoped for; the unfortunate's only resource is to bathe
in sulphur and molasses and let his finger nails grow. Further advice is
unnecessary--instinct will prompt him to scratch.

Territorial Enterprise, January 10, 1863


THE SANITARY BALL--The Sanitary Ball at La Plata Hall on Thursday night
[January 8, 1863] was a very marked success, and proved beyond the
shadow of a doubt, the correctness of our theory, that ladies never fail
in undertakings of this kind. If there had been about two dozen more
people there, the house would have been crowded--as it was, there was
room enough on the floor for the dancers, without trespassing on their
neighbors' corns. Several of those long, trailing dresses, even, were
under fire in the thickest of the fight for six hours, and came out
as free from rips and rents as they were when they went in. Not all of
them, though. We recollect a circumstance in point. We had just finished
executing one of those inscrutable figures of the plain quadrille; we
were feeling unusually comfortable, because we had gone through the
performance as well as anybody could have done it, except that we had
wandered a little toward the last; in fact we had wandered out of
our own and into somebody else's set--but that was a matter of small
consequence, as the new locality was as good as the old one, and we were
used to that sort of thing anyhow. We were feeling comfortable, and
we had assumed an attitude--we have a sort of talent for posturing--a
pensive attitude, copied from the Colossus of Rhodes--when the ladies
were ordered to the centre. Two of them got there, and the other two
moved off gallantly, but they failed to make the connection. They
suddenly broached to under full headway, and there was a sound of
parting canvas. Their dresses were anchored under our boots, you know.
It was unfortunate, but it could not be helped. Those two beautiful pink
dresses let go amidships, and remained in a ripped and damaged condition
to the end of the ball. We did not apologize, because our presence of
mind happened to be absent at the very moment that we had the greatest
need of it. But we beg permission to do so now.

An excellent supper was served in the large dining-room of the new
What Cheer House on B street. We missed it there, somewhat. We were not
accompanied by a lady, and consequently we were not eligible to a seat
at the first table. We found out all about that at the Gold Hill ball,
and we had intended to be all prepared for this one. We engaged a good
many young ladies last Tuesday to go with us, thinking that out of the
lot we should certainly be able to secure one, at the appointed time,
but they all seemed to have got a little angry about something--nobody
knows what, for the ways of women are past finding out. They told us we
had better go and invite a thousand girls to go to the ball. A thousand.
Why, it was absurd. We had no use for a thousand girls. A thou--but
those girls were as crazy as loons. In every instance, after they had
uttered that pointless suggestion, they marched magnificently out
of their parlors--and if you will believe us, not one of them ever
recollected to come back again. Why, it was the most unaccountable
experience we ever heard of. We never enjoyed so much solitude in so
many different places, in one evening before. But patience has its
limits; we finally got tired of that arrangement--and at the risk of
offending some of those girls, we stalked off to the Sanitary Ball alone
without a virgin, out of that whole litter. We may have done wrong--we
probably did do wrong to disappoint those fellows in that kind of
style--but how could we help it? We couldn't stand the temperature of
those parlors more than an hour at a time: it was cold enough to freeze
out the heaviest stock-holder on the Gould & Curry's books.

However, as we remarked before, everybody spoke highly of the supper,
and we believe they meant what they said. We are unable to say anything
in the matter from personal knowledge, except that the tables were
arranged with excellent taste, and more than abundantly supplied, and
everything looked very beautiful, and very inviting, also; but then we
had absorbed so much cold weather in those parlors, and had had so much
trouble with those girls, that we had no appetite left. We only eat a
boiled ham and some pies, and went back to the ball room. There were
some very handsome cakes on the tables, manufactured by Mr. Slade, and
decorated with patriotic mottoes, done in fancy icing. All those who
were happy that evening, agree that the supper was superb.

After supper the dancing was jolly. They kept it up till four in the
morning, and the guests enjoyed themselves excessively. All the dances
were performed, and the bill of fare wound up with a new style of plain
quadrille called a medley, which involved the whole list. It involved us
also. But we got out again--and we staid out, with great sagacity. But
speaking of plain quadrilles reminds us of another new one--the Virginia
reel. We found it a very easy matter to dance it, as long as we had
thirty or forty lookers-on to prompt us. The dancers were formed in
two long ranks, facing each other, and the battle opens with some light
skirmishing between the pickets, which is gradually resolved into a
general engagement along the whole line: after that, you have nothing to
do but stand by and grab every lady that drifts within reach of you, and
swing her. It is very entertaining, and elaborately scientific also; but
we observed that with a partner who had danced it before, we were able
to perform it rather better than the balance of the guests.

Altogether, the Sanitary Ball was a remarkably pleasant party, and we
are glad that such was the case--for it is a very uncomfortable task to
be obliged to say harsh things about entertainments of this kind. At
the present writing we cannot say what the net proceeds of the ball will
amount to, but they will doubtless reach quite a respectable figure--say

DUE NOTICE--Moralists and philosophers have adjudged those who throw
temptation in the way of the erring, equally guilty with those who are
thereby led into evil; and we therefore hold the man who suffers that
turkey to run at large just back of our office as culpable as our self,
if some day that fowl is no longer perceptible to human vision. The
Czar of Russia never cast his eye on the minarets of Byzantium half as
longingly as we gaze on that old gobbler. Turkey stuffed with oysters is
our weakness--our mouth waters at the recollection of sundry repasts of
that character--and this bird aforementioned appears to us to have an
astonishing capacity for oyster-stuffing. Wonder if those fresh oysters
at Almack's are all gone? We grow ravenous--pangs of hunger gnaw our
vitals--if to-morrow's setting sun gleams on the living form of that
turkey, we yield our reputation for strategy.

THE NEW COURT HOUSE.--Messrs. Unger & Denninger's new brick house, on B
street, has been leased by the County Commissioners for court rooms and
offices. The first floor, we believe, is to be used for a United States
District Court room, and the second story will be partitioned into
offices and a Probate Court room. It would probably have been better to
have reversed this order of things, on account of the superior light and
the freedom from dust and noise afforded by the upper story; yet it is
possible that these advantages may be as necessary in one case as the
other--we do not care about dictating much in the matter so long as no
one will be likely to pay us for it. But nevertheless, since the first
story is to be used for the District Court, we wish to suggest that that
box, that partition, be removed, and the whole of it set apart for
that purpose. It would then be a large, handsome and well-lighted hall,
whereas, in its present shape, it is not very greatly superior to the
present court room on C street. A gentleman informed us yesterday that
he thought the intention was to remove the partition, but he could not
be positive about it.

THE MUSIC.--Millington & McCluskey's band furnished the music for the
Sanitary Ball on Thursday night, and also for the Odd Fellows' Ball the
other evening in Gold Hill, and the excellence of the article was only
equalled by the industry and perseverance of the performers. We consider
that the man who can fiddle all through one of those Virginia Reels
without losing his grip, may be depended upon in any kind of musical

Territorial Enterprise, January 11-21, 1863


HIGH PRICE OF PORK.--In our record of probate proceedings to-day, will
be found the case of John Hill vs. John Doe Wentworth. As a matter of
principle, it may be well enough to stand by your rights until the lake
of fire and brimstone is no longer in a state of liquification, but
whether it be good policy to do so at all times is a question which
admits of argument. This case is an instance in point. The property
involved is about twenty or thirty dollars' worth of pork in a crude
state--we mean, two living hogs, probably worth but little more than
ten dollars each; yet this suit to determine their ownership has already
cost the parties to it some six or seven hundred dollars, and the
defeated but plucky plaintiff has given notice that he will apply for a
new trial! The new trial will double the bill of expenses, in all human

We learn from gentlemen who were present at the trial to-day, that there
were about thirty witnesses on the stand, and one of them a woman. The
hog dispute afforded those concerned and the lookers-on a good deal of
fun, but it was very costly. Those two distinguished pigs ought to be
taken care of and exhibited at the first agricultural fair of Nevada
Territory. At any rate, we shall officially spread the proceedings
of this trial upon the records of the Washoe Agricultural, Mining and
Mechanical Society, as evidence of the high value placed upon the hog in
Nevada Territory.

Territorial Enterprise, January 22-28, 1863


The following, which will do to sweeten some bachelor's coffee with, was
picked up in front of the International:

"DARLING: I have not had time to write you to-day--I have worked hard
entertaining company. Do come and see your little pet. I yearn for the
silvery cadence of your voice--I thirst for the bubbling stream of your


We feel for that girl. The water privilege which she pines for so
lovingly has probably dried up and departed, else her sweet note would
not have been floating around the streets without a claimant. We feel
for her deeply--and if it will afford her any relief, if it will conduce
to her comfort, if it will satisfy her yearning even in the smallest
degree, we will cheerfully call around and "bubble" awhile for her
ourself, if she will send us her address.

Territorial Enterprise, mid-February, 1863


We slide down into the Spanish mine yesterday, to look after the rich
strike which was made there lately.

[This in the time before elevators, when, as in the salt mines in
Austria, one slides down a polished wooden bannister on a waxed leather
apron to reduce the heat. It is a great ride down but a long hike back
up. Ed.]

We found things going on at about their usual gait, and the general
appearance of the mine in no respect differing from what it was before
the recent flood. A few inches of water still remain in the lower
gallery, but it interferes with nobody, and can be easily bailed out
whenever it may be deemed necessary. Every department of the Spanish
mine is now in first class working order, owing to the able management
of the general Superintendent, Mr. J. P. Corrigan: the slight damage
done by the inundation having been thoroughly repaired. In the matter
of bracing and timbering the mine, an improvement upon the old plan has
lately been added, which makes a large saving in the bill of expenses.
This improvement consists in building the stations wider and higher, and
filling up a wall of them here and there with refuse rock. Expenses are
not only lightened thus, but such walls never rot, are never in danger
of caving, need never be removed, and are altogether the strongest
supports that a mine can have. Intelligent people can understand, now,
that about a hundred dollars a day may be saved in this way, without
even taking into consideration the costly job of re-timbering every
two or three years, which is rendered unnecessary by it--and by way
of driving the proposition into heads like the Unreliable's, which is
filled with oysters instead of brains, we will say that by building
these walls, you are saved the time and labor of lowering heavy timbers
300 feet into the earth and hoisting up refuse rock the same distance;
for you can leave the one in the woods, and pile the other into boxed-up
stations as fast as you dig it out. However, it is time to speak of the
rich strike, now. This charming spot is two hundred and forty feet below
the surface of the earth. It extends across the entire width of the
ledge--from twenty-five to thirty feet--and has been excavated some
twenty feet on the length of the lead, and to the depth of twenty-one
feet. How much deeper it reaches, no man knoweth. The face of the walls
is of a dark blue color, sparkling with pyrites, or sulphurets, or
something, and beautifully marbled with little crooked streaks of
lightning as white as loaf sugar. This mass of richness pays from eight
to twelve hundred dollars a ton just as it is taken from the ledge,
without "sorting." Twenty thousand dollars' worth of it was hoisted out
of the mine last Saturday; about two hundred and fifty tons have been
taken out altogether. The hoisting apparatus is about perfect: when put
to its best speed, it can bail out somewhere in the neighborhood of a
hundred and fifty tons of rock in daylight. The rich ore we have been
talking about is sacked up as soon as it reaches the surface of the
Territory, and shipped off to the Company's mill (the Silver State)
at Empire City. The Silver State is a forty-stamp arrangement, with a
thundering chimney to it, which any one has noticed who has traveled
from here to Carson. Mr. Dorsey is the superintendent, and Mr. Janin

Territorial Enterprise, February 5, 1863


CARSON, Tuesday Night.

EDS. ENTERPRISE: I received the following atrocious document the morning
I arrived here. It is from that abandoned profligate, the Unreliable,
and I think it speaks for itself:

CARSON CITY, Thursday Morning

TO THE UNRELIABLE--SIR: Observing the driver of the Virginia stage
hunting after you this morning, in order to collect his fare, I infer
you are in town.

In the paper which you represent, I noticed an article which I took to
be an effusion of your muddled brain, stating that I had "cabbaged" a
number of valuable articles from you the night I took you out of the
streets in Washoe City and permitted you to occupy my bed.

I take this opportunity to inform you that I will compensate you at the
rate of $20 per head for every one of those valuables that I received
from you, providing you will relieve me of their presence. This offer
can either be accepted or rejected on your part: but, providing you
don't see proper to accept it, you had better procure enough lumber to
make a box 4 x 8, and have it made as early as possible. Judge Dixson
will arrange the preliminaries, if you don't accede. An early reply is
expected by


Not satisfied with wounding my feelings by making the most extraordinary
references and allusions in the above note, he even sent me a challenge
to fight, in the same envelope with it, hoping to work upon my fears
and drive me from the country by intimidation. But I was not to be
frightened; I shall remain in the Territory. I guessed his object at
once, and determined to accept his challenge, choose weapons and things,
and scare him, instead of being scared myself. I wrote a stern reply to
him, and offered him mortal combat with bootjacks at a hundred yards.
The effect was more agreeable than I could have hoped for. His hair
turned black in a single night, from excess of fear; then he went into a
fit of melancholy, and while it lasted he did nothing but sigh, and sob,
and snuffle, and slobber, and blow his nose on his coat-tail, and say
"he wished he was in the quiet tomb"; finally, he said he would commit
suicide--he would say farewell to the cold, cold world, with its cares
and troubles, and go and sleep with his fathers, in perdition. Then rose
up this young man, and threw his demijohn out of the window, and took a
glass of pure water, and drained it to the very, very dregs. And then he
fell on the floor in spasms. Dr. Tjader was called in, and as soon as he
found that the cuss was poisoned, he rushed down to the Magnolia Saloon
and got the antidote, and poured it down him. As he was drawing his last
breath, he scented the brandy and lingered yet a while upon the earth,
to take a drink with the boys. But for this, he would have been no more
and possibly a good deal less--in another moment. So he survived; but he
has been in a mighty precarious condition ever since. I have been up to
see how he was getting along two or three times a day. He is very low;
he lies there in silence, and hour after hour he appears to be absorbed
in tracing out the figures in the wall paper. He is not changed in the
least, though; his face looks just as natural as anything could be there
is no more expression in it than a turnip. But he is a very sick man; I
was up there a while ago, and I could see that his friends had begun to
entertain hopes that he would not get over it. As soon as I saw that,
all my enmity vanished; I even felt like doing the poor Unreliable a
kindness, and showing him, too, how my feelings towards him had changed.
So I went and bought him a beautiful coffin, and carried it up and set
it down on his bed, and told him to climb in when his time was up. Well,
sir, you never saw a man so affected by a little act of kindness as he
was by that. He let off a sort of war-whoop, and went to kicking things
around like a crazy man, and he foamed at the mouth, and went out of one
fit and into another faster than I could take them down in my note-book.
I have got thirteen down, though, and I know he must have had two or
three before I could find my pencil. I actually believe he would have
had a thousand, if that old fool who nurses him hadn't thrown the coffin
out of the window, and threatened to serve me in the same way if I
didn't leave. I left, of course, under the circumstances, and I learn
that although the patient was getting better a moment before this
circumstance, he got a good deal worse immediately afterward. They say
he lies in a sort of a stupor now, and if they cannot rally him, he is
gone in, as it were. They may take their own course now, though, and use
their own judgment. I shall not go near them again, although I think I
could rally him with another coffin.

I did not return to Virginia yesterday, on account of the wedding.
The parties were Hon. James H. Sturtevant, one of the first Pi-Utes of
Nevada, and Miss Emma Curry, daughter of Hon. A. Curry, who also claims
that his is a Pi-Ute family of high antiquity. Curry conducted the
wedding arrangements himself, and invited none but Pi-Utes. This
interfered with me a good deal. However, as I had heard it reported that
a marriage was threatened, I felt it my duty to go down there and find
out the facts in the case. They said I might stay, as it was me; the
permission was unnecessary, though--I calculated to do that anyhow.
I promised not to say anything about the wedding, and I regard that
promise as sacred--my word is as good as my bond. At three o'clock
in the afternoon, all the Pi-Utes went up stairs to the old Hall of
Representatives in Curry's house, preceded by the bride and groom, and
the brides maids and groomsmen (Miss Jo. Perkins and Miss Nettie Curry,
and Hon. John H. Mills and Wm. M. Gillespie) and followed by myself
and the fiddlers. The fiddles were tuned up, three quadrille sets were
formed on the floor. Father Bennett advanced and touched off the high
contracting parties with the hymeneal torch ( married them, you know),
and at the word of command from Curry, the fiddle-bows were set in
motion, and the plain quadrilles turned loose. Thereupon, some of the
most responsible dancing ensued that you ever saw in your life. The
dance that Tam O'Shanter witnessed was slow in comparison to it. They
kept it up for six hours, and then they carried out the exhausted
musicians on a shutter, and went down to supper. I know they had a fine
supper, and plenty of it, but I do not know much else. They drank so
much champagne around me that I got confused, and lost the hang of
things, as it were. Mills, and Musser, and Sturtevant, and Curry, got to
making speeches, and I got to looking at the bride and bridesmaids--they
looked uncommonly handsome--and finally I fell into a sort of trance.
When I recovered from it the brave musicians were all right again, and
the dance was ready to commence. They went to slinging plain quadrilles
around as lively as ever, and never rested again until nearly midnight,
when the dancers all broke down and the party broke up. It was all
mighty pleasant, and jolly, and sociable, and I wish to thunder I was
married myself. I took a large slab of the bridal cake home with me to
dream on, and dreamt that I was still a single man, and likely to
remain so, if I live and nothing happens--which has given me a greater
confidence in dreams than I ever felt before. I cordially wish the newly
married couple all kinds of happiness and posterity, though.

Richardson's case was continued to the next term of the District
Court last Thursday, and the prisoner admitted to bail in the sum of
$10,000--$7,000 on the charge of murder (the killing of Con Mason), and
$3,000 on the charge of highway robbery.

Three new mining companies filed their certificates of incorporation in
the County Clerk's and Territorial Secretary's offices last Saturday.
Their ledges are located in the new Brown & Murphy District, in Lyon
county. The names, etc., of the new companies are as follows: Jennie V.
Thompson G. & S. M. Company, capital stock $220,000, in 2,200 shares of
$100 each; Byron G. & S. M. Company, same number of shares, etc.; Lion
G. & S. Company, capital stock $230,000, in 2,300 shares of $100 each.
The following gentlemen are Trustees of all three companies: C. L.
Newton, J. D. Thompson, J. Ball, G. C. Haswell and Wm. Millikin. The
principal offices of the companies are in Carson City.


Territorial Enterprise, February 8, 1863


CARSON, Thursday Morning

EDS. ENTERPRISE: The community were taken by surprise last night, by
the marriage of Dr. J. H. Wayman and Mrs. M. A. Ormsby. Strategy did it.
John K. Trumbo lured the people to a party at his house, and corraled
them, and in the meantime Acting Governor Clemens proceeded to the
bride's dwelling and consolidated the happy couple under the name and
style of Mr. and Mrs. Wayman, with a life charter, perpetual succession,
unlimited marital privileges, principal place of business at ho--blast
those gold and silver mining incorporations! I have compiled a long list
of them from the Territorial Secretary's books this morning, and their
infernal technicalities keep slipping from my pen when I ought to
be writing graceful poetical things. After the marriage, the high
contracting parties and the witnesses there assembled, adjourned to Mr.
Trumbo's house. The ways of the Unreliable are past finding out. His
instincts always prompt him to go where he is not wanted, particularly
if anything of an unusual nature is on foot. Therefore, he was present
and saw those wedding ceremonies through the parlor windows. He climbed
up behind Dr. Wayman's coach and rode up to Trumbo's--this shows that
his faculties were not affected by his recent illness. When the bride
and groom entered the parlor he went in with them, bowing and scraping
and smiling in his imbecile way, and attempting to pass himself off for
the principal groomsman. I never saw such an awkward, ungainly lout in
my life. He had on a pair of Jack Wilde's pantaloons, and a swallow-tail
coat belonging to Lytle ("Schermerhorn's Boy"), and they fitted him as
neatly as an elephant's hide would fit a poodle dog. I would be ashamed
to appear in any parlor in such a costume. It never enters his head
to be ashamed of anything, though. It would have killed me with
mortification to parade around there as he did, and have people stepping
on my coat tail every moment. As soon as the guests found out who he was
they kept out of his way as well as they could, but there were so many
gentlemen and ladies present that he was never at a loss for somebody to
pester with his disgusting familiarity. He worried them from the parlor
to the sitting-room, and from thence to the dancing-hall, and then
proceeded upstairs to see if he could find any more people to stampede.
He found Fred. Turner, and stayed with him until he was informed that
he could have nothing more to eat or drink in that part of the house. He
went back to the dancing-hall then, but he carried away a codfish under
one arm, and Mr. Curry's plug hat full of sour-krout under the other.
He posted himself right where he could be most in the way, and fell to
eating as comfortably as if he were boarding with Trumbo by the week.
They bothered him some, though, because every time the order came to
"all promenade," the dancers would sweep past him and knock his cod fish
out of his hands and spill his sour-krout. He was the most loathsome
sight I ever saw; he turned everybody's stomach but his own. It makes no
difference to him, either, what he eats when hungry. I believe he would
have eaten a corpse last night, if he had one. Finally, Curry came
and took his hat away from him and tore one of his coat tails off and
threatened to thresh him with it, and that checked his appetite for a
moment. Instead of sneaking out of the house, then, as anybody would
have done who had any self respect, he shoved his codfish into the
pocket of his solitary coat tail (leaving at least eight inches of it
sticking out), and crowded himself into a double quadrille. He had it
all to himself pretty soon; because the order "gentlemen to the right"
came, and he passed from one lady to another around the room, and wilted
each and every one of them with the horrible fragrance of his breath.
Even Trumbo, himself, fainted. Then the Unreliable, with a placid
expression of satisfaction upon his countenance, marched forth and swept
the parlors like a pestilence. When the guests had been persecuted as
long as they could stand it, though, they got him to drink some kerosene
oil, which neutralized the sour-krout and cod fish, and restored his
breath to about its usual state, or even improved it, perhaps, for it
generally smells like a hospital.

The Unreliable interfered with Col. Musser when he was singing the
pea-nut song; he bothered William Patterson, Esq., when that baritone
was singing, "Ever of thee I'm fondly dreaming"; he interrupted Epstein
when he was playing on the piano; he followed the bride and bridegroom
from place to place, like an evil spirit, and he managed to keep himself
and his coat-tail eternally in the way. I did hope that he would stay
away from the supper-table, but I hoped against an impossibility. He was
the first one there, and had choice of seats also, because he told Mr.
Trumbo he was a groomsman; and not only that, but he made him believe,
also, that Dr. Wayman was his uncle. Then he sailed into the ice cream
and champagne, and cakes and things, at his usual starvation gait,
and he would infallibly have created a famine, if Trumbo had not been
particularly well fortified with provisions. There is one circumstance
connected with the Unreliable's career last night which it pains me
to mention, but I feel that it is my duty to do it. I shall cut the
melancholy fact as short as possible, however: seventeen silver spoons,
a New Testament and a gridiron were missed after supper. They were found
upon the Unreliable's person when he was in the act of going out at the
back door.

Singing and dancing commenced at seven o'clock in the evening, and were
kept up with unabated fury until half-past one in the morning, when the
jolly company put on each other's hats and bonnets and wandered home,
mighty well satisfied with Trumbo's "corn shucking," as he called it.

Well, you were particularly bitter about the "extra session" yesterday
morning, and with very small cause, too, it seems to me. You rush in
desperately and call out all the fire engines in the universe, and lo!
there is nothing but a chunk of harmless fox-fire to squirt at after
all. You slash away right and left at the lawyers, just as if they were
not human like other people, subject to the same accidents of fortune
and circumstances, moved by the same springs of action, and honest or
dishonest according to the nature which God Almighty endowed them with.
Stuff! You talk like a wooden man. A man's profession has but little to
do with his moral character. If we had as many preachers as lawyers,
you would find it mixed as to which occupation could muster the most
rascals. Then you pitch into the legislators, and say that, "with two or
three exceptions, they are men who failed to complete their programmes
of rascality," etc. Humbug! They never commenced any such programme. I
reported their proceedings--I was behind the scenes, and I know. I talk
sweepingly, perhaps--so do you, in that wild sentence. There might have
been two or three first-class rascals in the Legislature--I have that
number in my eye at the present moment--but the balance were fully as
honest as you, and considerably more so than me. I could prove this by
simply reminding you of their names. Run over the list, and see if there
are not some very respectable names on it. I have acknowledged that
there were several scoundrels in the Legislature, but such a number, in
as large a body as the last Assembly, could carry no measure, you know,
and the men I am thinking of couldn't even influence one. The Lord
originally intended them to do transportation duty in a jackass train,
I think. And then, how you talk about the pecuniary wants of our
legislators: "Their hungry wallets yearn for a second assault on the
greenbacks and franchises of the Territory." That is humbug, also. Take
the House, for instance. I can name you fifteen members of that body
whose pecuniary condition is very comfortable--who stand in no more
pressing need of Territorial greenbacks than you do of another leg. And
I can name you half a dozen others who are not suffering for food and
raiment, and whom Providence will be able to take care of, I think,
without bringing an extra session of the Nevada Legislature to pass.
You talk like a wooden man, I tell you. Why there are not enough
"Territorial Greenbacks" in the Secretary's office and the Territorial
Treasury put together to start a wholesale pea-nut stand with; and why
should thirty-nine legislators want to neglect their business to go to
Carson and gobble up and divide such a pittance? Bosh.

Somebody made a blunder; somebody did a piece of rascality. It was not
the legislators, yet only they can set the matter right--and if they
want to go back to the capital and do it, it is rather a credit to them
than a dishonor. I cannot see anything very criminal in this conduct
of theirs. You are too brash, you know--that is what is the matter with
you. You say you heard a report that the Acting Governor had decided to
call an extra session. Well, what if you did? Don't you suppose that,
being here, at the seat of government, I would naturally know a good
deal more about it than anybody's reports? Reports lie--I do not. Why
didn't you ask me for information? I always have an abundance of the
article on hand. I will give you some now: the Acting Governor has not
decided to call an extra session; he is not seriously thinking of such
a thing at present; he is not expecting to think of it next week; he
is not in favor of the measure, and does not wish to move in the matter
unless a majority of the counties expressly desire it. Now, you have
said a great many things in your article which you ought not to
have said; you have done injustice to all the parties whom you have
mentioned; you have hollered "wolf!" when there was nothing present but
the mildest sort of a lamb; and the properest course for you to pursue
will be to screw down your throttle-valve and dry up.

I have a strong inclination to continue this subject a while longer, but
I promised to go down in town and get drunk with Curry and Trumbo, and
Tom Bedford and Gillespie, before I leave for Virginia. My promises are
sacred. I have also to receive a petition from citizens of Carson, with
several thousand names on it, requesting me to extend my visit here a
few years longer. It affords me great pleasure to state that several
hundred sheets of this petition are covered with the autographs of
intelligent and beautiful ladies.

Territorial Enterprise, February 19, 1863


EDS. ENTERPRISE--I found the following letter, or Valentine, or whatever
it is, lying on the summit, where it had been dropped unintentionally,
I think. It was written on a sheet of legal cap, and each line was duly
commenced within the red mark which traversed the sheet from top to
bottom. Solon appeared to have had some trouble getting his effusion
started to suit him. He had begun it, "Know all men by these presents,"
and scratched it out again; he had substituted, "Now at this day comes
the plaintiff, by his attorney," and scratched that out also; he had
tried other sentences of like character, and gone on obliterating them,
until, through much sorrow and tribulation, he achieved the dedication
which stands at the head of his letter, and to his entire satisfaction,
I do cheerfully hope. But what a villain a man must be to blend together
the beautiful language of love and the infernal phraseology of the law
in one and the same sentence! I know but one of God's creatures who
would be guilty of such depravity as this: I refer to the Unreliable.
I believe the Unreliable to be the very lawyer's-cub who sat upon the
solitary peak, all soaked in beer and sentiment, and concocted the
insipid literary hash I am talking about. The handwriting closely
resembles his semi-Chinese tarantula tracks.

SUGAR LOAF PEAK, February 14, 1863.

To the loveliness to whom these presents shall come, greeting:--This is
a lovely day, my own Mary; its unencumbered sunshine reminds me of your
happy face, and in the imagination the same doth now appear before me.
Such sights and scenes as this ever remind me, the party of the second
part, of you, my Mary, the peerless party of the first part. The view
from the lonely and segregated mountain peak, of this portion of what
is called and known as Creation, with all and singular the
hereditaments and appurtenances thereunto appertaining and belonging, is
inexpressively grand and inspiring; and I gaze, and gaze, while my
soul is filled with holy delight, and my heart expands to receive thy
spirit-presence, as aforesaid. Above me is the glory of the sun; around
him float the messenger clouds, ready alike to bless the earth with
gentle rain, or visit it with lightning, and thunder, and destruction;
far below the said sun and the messenger clouds aforesaid, lying prone
upon the earth in the verge of the distant horizon, like the burnished
shield of a giant, mine eyes behold a lake, which is described and set
forth in maps as the Sink of Carson; nearer, in the great plain, I see
the Desert, spread abroad like the mantle of a Colossus, glowing by
turns, with the warm light of the sun, hereinbefore mentioned, or darkly
shaded by the messenger clouds aforesaid; flowing at right angles with
said Desert, and adjacent thereto, I see the silver and sinuous thread
of the river, commonly called Carson, which winds its tortuous course
through the softly tinted valley, and disappears amid the gorges of the
bleak and snowy mountains--a simile of man!--leaving the pleasant valley
of Peace and Virtue to wander among the dark defiles of Sin, beyond the
jurisdiction of the kindly beaming sun aforesaid! And about said sun,
and the said clouds, and around the said mountains, and over the plain
and the river aforesaid, there floats a purple glory--a yellow mist--as
airy and beautiful as the bridal veil of a princess, about to be wedded
according to the rites and ceremonies pertaining to, and established
by, the laws or edicts of the kingdom or principality wherein she doth
reside, and whereof she hath been and doth continue to be, a lawful
sovereign or subject. Ah! my Mary, it is sublime! it is lovely! I have
declared and made known, and by these presents do declare and make known
unto you, that the view from Sugar Loaf Peak, as hereinbefore described
and set forth, is the loveliest picture with which the hand of the
Creator has adorned the earth, according to the best of my knowledge and
belief, so help me God.

Given under my hand, and in the spirit-presence of the bright being
whose love has restored the light of hope to a soul once groping in the
darkness of despair, on the day and year first above written.


Law Student, and Notary Public in and for the said County of Storey, and
Territory of Nevada.

To Miss Mary Links, Virginia (and may the laws have her in their holy


Territorial Enterprise, February 19, 1863

[some text of this article has not been recovered]


[LA PLATA ORE COMPANY.--]... The company was organized under a deed
of trust, and has been steadily at work, with scarce any intermission,
since the 1st of May, 1861--under the general superintendence of the
President, Col. W. H. Howard. The claim is believed to comprise some of
the finest ledges in the Virginia and Gold Hill range, and from present
appearances it looks as if the company were about to commence realizing
the reward of their long and well-bestowed labor, as in addition to
the ledges already noticed, the top of a fine ledge has already been
uncovered on the west side of the claim, where the chimney ranging with
the Butler's Peak and Mount Davidson ledges crops out.

THE CHINA TRIAL.--We were there, yesterday, not because we were obliged
to go, but just because we wanted to. The more we see of this aggravated
trial, the more profound does our admiration for it become. It has more
phases than the moon has in a chapter of the almanac. It commenced as an
assassination; the assassinated man neglected to die, and they turned it
into assault and battery; after this the victim did die, whereupon his
murderers were arrested and tried yesterday for perjury; they convicted
one Chinaman, but when they found out it was the wrong one, they let him
go--and why they should have been so almighty particular is beyond
our comprehension; then, in the afternoon, the officers went down
and arrested Chinatown again for the same old offense, and put it in
jail--but what shape the charge will take this time, no man can foresee:
the chances are that it will be about a stand-off between arson and
robbing the mail. Capt. White hopes to get the murderers of the Chinaman
hung one of these days, and so do we, for that matter, but we do not
expect anything of the kind. You see, these Chinamen are all alike, and
they cannot identify each other. They mean well enough, and they really
show a disinterested anxiety to get some of their friends and relatives
hung, but the same misfortune overtakes them every time: they make
mistakes and get the wrong man, with unvarying accuracy. With a zeal in
behalf of justice which cannot be too highly praised, the whole Chinese
population have accused each other of this murder, each in his regular
turn, but fate is against them. They cannot tell each other apart. There
is only one way to manage this thing with strict equity: hang the gentle
Chinamen promiscuously, until justice is satisfied.

THE CONCERT.--We shall always guard against insinuating that the
citizens of Virginia are not filled with a fondness for music, after
what we saw at Mr. Griswold's Concert last night. The house was filled,
from dome to cellar (we speak figuratively, since there was neither
dome nor cellar to the house,) with people who entirely appreciated the
performance, and testified pleasure by frequent and hearty applause. The
Concert was a notable credit to the talent of Virginia, and we think
we speak the public desire when we ask for another like it. Mr. James
Gilmore, a very youthful looking poet, recited a martial poem whereof
himself was the author. It was received with great applause. We only
heard five of the songs set...

Territorial Enterprise, February 17-22, 1863


We propose to speak of some silver bars which we have been looking at,
and to talk science a little, also, in this article, if we find that
what we learned in the latter line yesterday has not escaped our memory.
The bars we allude to were at the banking house of Paxton Thornburgh,
and were five in number; they were the concentrated result of portions
of two eight-day runs of the Hoosier State Mill, on Potosi rock. The
first of the bricks bore the following inscription, which is poetry
stripped of flowers and flummery, and reduced to plain common sense:
"No. 857; Potosi Gold and Silver Mining Company; Theall & Co., assayers;
688.48 ounces, gold, 020 fine, silver, 962 fine; gold $572.13, silver
$1,229.47." Bars No. 836 and No. 858 bore about the same inscription,
save that their values differed, of course, the one being worth $1,800,
and the other a fraction under $1,300. The two largest bars were still
in the workshop, and had not yet been assayed; one of them weighed
nearly a hundred pounds and 1 was worth about $3,000, and the other,
which contained over 900 ounces, was worth in the neighborhood of
$2,000. The weight of the whole five bars may be set down in round
numbers at 300 pounds, and their value, at say, $10,000. Those are about
the correct figures. We are very well pleased with the Hoosier
State mill and the Potosi mine--we think of buying them. From the
contemplation of this result of two weeks' mill and mining labor, we
walked through the assaying rooms, in the rear of the banking house,
with Mr. Theall, and examined the scientific operations there, with a
critical eye. We absorbed much obtuse learning, and we propose to give
to the ignorant the benefit of it. After the amalgam has been retorted
at the mill, it is brought here and broken up and put into a crucible
(along with a little borax,) of the capacity of an ordinary plug hat;
this vessel is composed of some kind of pottery which stands heat like a
salamander; the crucible is placed in a brick furnace; in the midst of
a charcoal fire as hot as the one which the three Scriptural Hebrew
children were assayed in; when the mass becomes melted, it is well
stirred, in order to get the metals thoroughly mixed, after which it
is poured into an iron brick mould; such of the base metals as were
not burned up, remain in the crucible in the form of a "sing." The next
operation is the assaying of the brick. A small chip is cut from each
end of it and weighed; each of these is enveloped in lead and placed in
a little shallow cup made of bone ashes, called a cupel, and put in a
small stone-ware oven, enclosed in a sort of parlor stove furnace,
where it is cooked like a lost sinner; the lead becomes oxydized and is
entirely absorbed by the pores of the cupel--any other base metals that
may still linger in the precious stew, meet the same fate, or go up
the chimney. The gold and silver come from the cupel in the shape of a
little button, and in a state of perfect purity; this is weighed once
more, and what it has lost by the cooking process, determines the amount
of base metal that was in it, and shows exactly what proportion of it
the bar contains--the lost weight was base metal you understand, and was
burned up or absorbed by the cupel. The scales used in this service are
of such extremely delicate construction that they have to be shut up
in a glass case, since a breath of air is sufficient to throw them
off their balance--so sensitive are they, indeed, that they are even
affected by the particles of dust which find their way through the
joinings of the case and settle on them. They will figure the weight of
a piece of metal down to the thousandth part of a grain, with stunning
accuracy. You might weigh a musquito here, and then pull one of his legs
off, and weigh him again, and the scales would detect the difference.
The smallest weight used--the one which represents the thousandth part
of a grain--is composed of aluminum, which is the metallic base of
common clay, and is the lightest metal known to science. It looks like
an imperceptible atom clipped from the invisible corner of a piece
of paper whittled down to an impossible degree of sharpness--as it
were--and they handle it with pincers like a hair pin. But with an
excuse for this interesting digression, we will return to the silver
button again. After the weighing, melting and re-weighing of it has
shown the amount of base metal contained in the brick, the next thing to
be done is to separate the silver and gold in it, in order to find out
the exact proportions of these in the bar. The button is placed in a
mattrass filled with nitric acid, (an elongated glass bottle or tube,
shaped something like a bell clapper) which is half buried in a box
of hot sand--they called it a sand bath--on top of the little cupel
furnace, where all the silver is boiled out of said button and held in
solution, (when in this condition it is chemically termed "nitrate of
silver.") This process leaves a small pinch of gold dust in the bottom
of the mattrass which is perfectly pure; its weight will show the
proportion of pure gold in the bar, of course. The silver in solution is
then precipitated with muriatic acid (or something of that kind--we are
not able to swear that this was the drug mentioned to us, although we
feel very certain that it was,) and restored to metal again. Its weight,
by the musquito scales, will show the proportion of silver contained in
the brick, you know. Now just here, our memory is altogether at fault.
We cannot recollect what in the world it is they do with the "dry cups."
We asked a good many questions about them--asking questions is our
regular business--but we have forgotten the answers. It is all owing to
lager beer. We are inclined to think, though, that after the silver has
been precipitated, they cook it a while in those little chalky-looking
"dry cups," in order to turn it from fine silver dust to a solid button
again for the sake of convenient handling--but we cannot begin to
recollect anything about it. We said they made a separate assay of the
chips cut from each end of a bar; now if these chips do not agree--if
they make different statements as to the proportions of the various
metals contained in the bar, it is pretty good proof that the mixing was
not thorough, and the brick has to be melted over again; this occurrence
is rare, however. This is all the science we know. What we do not know
is reserved for private conversation, and will be liberally inflicted
upon any body who will come here to the office and submit to it. After
the bar has been assayed, it is stamped as described in the beginning of
this dissertation, and then it is ready for the mint. Science is a very
pleasant subject to dilate upon, and we consider that we are as able
to dilate upon it as any man that walks--but if we have been guilty of
carelessness in any part of this article, so that our method of assaying
as set forth herein may chance to differ from Mr. Theall's, we would
advise that gentleman to stick to his own plan nevertheless, and not go
to following ours--his is as good as any known to science. If we have
struck anything new in our method, however, we shall be happy to hear of
it, so that we can take steps to secure to ourself the benefits accruing

Territorial Enterprise, February 25, 1863


THE UNRELIABLE.--This poor miserable outcast crowded himself into the
Firemen's Ball, night before last, and glared upon the happy scene with
his evil eye for a few minutes. He had his coat buttoned up to his chin,
which is the way he always does when he has no shirt on. As soon as the
managers found out he was there, they put him out, of course. They had
better have allowed him to stay, though, for he walked straight across
the street, with all his vicious soul aroused, and climbed in at the
back window of the supper room and gobbled up the last crumb of the
repast provided for the guests, before he was discovered. This accounts
for the scarcity of provisions at the Firemen's supper that night. Then
he went home and wrote a particular description of our ball costume,
with his usual meanness, as if such information could be of any
consequence to the public. He never vouchsafed a single compliment to
our dress, either, after all the care and taste we had bestowed upon it.
We despise that man.

"MANY CITIZENS."--In another column of this paper will be found a
card signed by "Many Citizens of Carson," stating that the County
Commissioners of Ormsby county have removed the Sheriff from office
and appointed some one else in his stead. They also ask whether the
Commissioners really possess the power to remove the Sheriff, or the
Governor of the Territory, or the President of the United States, at
pleasure. This is all well enough, except that in the face of our well
known ability in the treatment of ponderous questions of unwritten law,
these citizens have addressed their inquiries to the chief editor of
this paper--a man who knows no more about legal questions than he does
about religion--and so saturated with self-conceit is he, that he has
even attempted, in his feeble way, to answer the propositions set forth
in that note. We ignore his reply entirely, and notwithstanding the
disrespect which has been shown us, we shall sink private pique for the
good of our fellow men, and proceed to set their minds at rest on this
question of power. We declare that the County Commissioners do possess
the power to remove the officers mentioned in that note, at pleasure.
The Organic Act says so in so many words. We invite special attention
to the fist clause of section 2 of that document, where this language is
used, if we recollect rightly: "The executive power and authority in and
over said Territory of Nevada shall be vested in a Governor and other
officers, who shall hold their offices for four years, and until their
successors shall be appointed and qualified, unless sooner removed by
the County Commissioners." That is explicit enough, we take it.
"Other officers" means any or all other officers, of course, else such
dignitaries as it was intended to refer to would have been specifically
mentioned; consequently, the President of the United States, and the
Governor and Sheriff being "officers," come within the provisions of the
law, and may be shoved out of the way by the Commissioners as quietly
as they would abate a nuisance. We might enlarge upon this subject
until Solomon himself couldn't under stand it--but we have settled the
question, and we despise to go on scattering pearls before swine who
have not asked us for them. In thus proving by the Organic Act, and
beyond the shadow of a doubt, that the County Commissioners are invested
with power to remove the Sheriff or the Governor or the President,
whenever they see fit to do so, we have been actuated solely by a love
of the godlike principles of right and justice, and a desire to show the
public what an unmitigated ass the chief editor of this paper is. Having
succeeded to our entire satisfaction, we transfer our pen to matters
of local interest, although we could prove, if we wanted to, that the
County Commissioners not only possess the power to depose the officers
above referred to but to hang them also, if they feel like it.
When people want a legal opinion in detail, they must address their
communications to us, individually, and not to irresponsible smatterers,
like the chief editor.

THE FIREMEN'S BALL.--About seventy couples assembled at Topliffe's
Theatre night before last, upon the occasion of the annual ball of
Virginia Engine Company No. 1. The hall was ablaze, from one end to
the other, with flags, mirrors, pictures, etc.; and when the crowd of
dancers had got into violent motion, and thoroughly fuddled with plain
quadrilles, the looking-glasses multiplied them into a distracted and
countless throng. Verily, the effect was charming to the last degree.
The decoration of the theatre occupied several days, and was done under
the management of a committee composed of Messrs. Brokaw, Robinson,
Champney, Claresy, Garvey and Sands, and they certainly acquitted
themselves with marked ability. The floor was covered with heavy
canvass, and we rather liked the arrangement--but the wind got under it
and made it fill and sag like a circus tent, insomuch that it
impeded the Varsovienne practice, and caused the ladies to complain
occasionally. Benham's "People's Band" made excellent music; however,
they always do that. We have not one particle of fault to find with the
ball; the managers kept perfect order and decorum, and did everything
in their power to make it pass pleasantly to all the guests. They
succeeded. But of all the failures we have been called upon to
chronicle, the supper was the grandest. It was bitterly denounced by
nearly everybody who sat down to it--officers, firemen, men, women and
children. Now, the supposition is, that somebody will come out in a card
and deny this, and attribute base motives to us: but we are not to be
caught asleep, or even napping, this time--we have got all our proofs at
hand, and shall explode at anybody who tries to show that we cannot tell
the truth without being actuated by unworthy motives. Chief Engineer
Peasley and officer Birdsall said that the supper contract was for a
table supplied with everything the market could afford, and in such
profusion that the last who came might fare as well as the first (the
contractor to receive a stipulated sum for each supper furnished)--and
they also say that no part or portion of that contract was entirely
fulfilled. The entertainment broke up about four o'clock in the morning,
and the guests returned to their homes well satisfied with the ball
itself, but not with the supper.

SMALL POX.--From Carson we learn, officially, that Dr. Munckton has been
sent down to Pine Nut Springs to look after some cases of small pox,
reported as existing among the Washoe Indians there. It is said that
three men and a mahala are afflicted with it; the doctor intends
vaccinating their attendants and warning the other Indians to keep away.
Capt. Jo says one of the Indians caught the disease from a shirt given
him by a white man. We do not believe any man would do such a thing as
that maliciously, but at the same time, any man is censurable who is
so careless as to leave infected clothing lying about where these poor
devils can get hold of it. The commonest prudence ought to suggest the
destruction of such dangerous articles.

SCHOOL-HOUSE.--An addition is being built to the public school house,
and will be completed and put in order for occupation as soon as
possible. Mr. Mellvile's school has increased to such an extent that the
old premises were found insufficient to accommodate all the pupils. As
soon as the new building is completed, the school will be divided into
three departments--advanced, intermediate and infant--and one of these
will occupy it.

TRIAL TO-DAY.--Sam Ingalls, who attempted the life of Pease the other
day with a bowie knife, will be up before Judge Atwill to-day on a
charge of drawing a deadly weapon. A case of this kind should never be
allowed to pass without a severe rebuke, and if the evidence finds the
prisoner guilty, he will probably catch it to-day; if it does not, why,
no one wants him rebuked, of course.

DISTRICT COURT.--The testimony for both sides in the case of the Burning
Moscow vs. Madison Company was completed yesterday, and the lawyers
will begin to throw hot shot at each other this morning--which is our
military way of saying that the arguments of counsel herein will be
commenced to-day. A great deal of interest is manifested in this suit,
and the lobbies will be crowded during its trial.

SUICIDE.--We learn by a note received last night per Langton's Express,
that a German named John Meyer, a wood dealer in Downieville, committed
suicide there on the night of the 19th inst., by blowing his brains out
with a pistol. The cause is supposed to have been insanity.

TELEGRAPHIC.--A message for S. S. Harman remains uncalled for at the
Telegraph office.

Territorial Enterprise, February 26, 1863

[last portion of mock obituary of the "Unreliable"; first portion of
original text not recovered]


He became a newspaper reporter, and crushed Truth to earth and kept her
there; he bought and sold his own notes, and never paid his board; he
pretended great friendship for Gillespie, in order to get to sleep with
him; then he took advantage of his bed fellow and robbed him of his
glass eye and his false teeth; of course he sold the articles, and
Gillespie was obliged to issue more county scrip than the law allowed,
in order to get them back again; the Unreliable broke into my trunk
at Washoe City, and took jewelry and fine clothes and things, worth
thousands and thousands of dollars; he was present, without invitation,
at every party and ball and wedding which transpired in Carson during
thirteen years. But the last act of his life was the crowning meanness
of it: I refer to the abuse of me in the Virginia Union of last
Saturday, and also to a list of Langton's stage passengers sent to the
same paper by him, wherein my name appears between those of "Sam
Chung" and "Sam Lee." This is his treatment of me, his benefactor. That
malicious joke was his dying atrocity. During thirteen years he played
himself for a white man: he fitly closed his vile career by trying to
play me for a Chinaman. He is dead and buried now, though: let him
rest, let him rot. Let his vices be forgotten, but let his virtues be
remembered: it will not infringe much upon any man's time.


P. S.--By private letters from Carson, since the above was in type, I
am pained to learn that the Unreliable, true to his unnatural instincts,
came to life again in the midst of his funeral sermon, and remains so
to this moment. He was always unreliable in life--he could not even be
depended upon in death. The shrouded corpse shoved the coffin lid to
one side, rose to a sitting posture, cocked his eye at the minister and
smilingly said, "O let up, Dominie, this is played out, you know--loan
me two bits!" The frightened congregation rushed from the house, and the
Unreliable followed them, with his coffin on his shoulder. He sold
it for two dollars and a half, and got drunk at a "bit house" on the
proceeds. He is still drunk.

Territorial Enterprise, between February 17-26, 1863


APOLOGETIC.--We are always happy to apologize to a man when we do him an
injury. We have wounded William Smiley's feelings, and we will heal them
up again or bust. We said in yesterday's police record that Bill (excuse
the familiarity, William,) was drunk. We lied. It is our opinion that
Sam Wetherill did, too, for he gave us the statement. We have gleaned
the facts in the case, though, from William himself, and at his request
we hasten to apologize. His offense was mildness itself. He only had a
pitched battle with another man, and resisted an officer. That was all.
Come up, William, and take a drink.

Territorial Enterprise, March 4, 1863


John Van Buren Perry, recently re-elected City Marshal of Virginia City,
was born a long time ago, in County Kerry, Ireland, of poor but honest
parents, who were descendants, beyond question, of a house of high
antiquity. The founder of it was distinguished for his eloquence; he was
the property of one Baalam, and received honorable mention in the Bible.

John Van Buren Perry removed to the United States in 1792--after having
achieved a high gastronomical reputation by creating the first famine in
his native land--and established himself at Kinderhook, New Jersey, as
a teacher of vocal and instrumental music. His eldest son, Martin Van
Buren, was educated there, and was afterwards elected President of the
United States; his grandson, of the same name, is now a prominent New
York politician, and is known in the East as 'Prince John;' he keeps up
a constant and affectionate correspondence with his worthy grandfather,
who sells him feet in some of his richest wildcat claims from time to

While residing at Kinderhook, Jack Perry was appointed Commodore of the
United States Navy, and he forthwith proceeded to Lake Erie and fought
the mighty marine conflict, which blazes upon the pages of history as
"Perry's Victory." In consequence of this exploit, he narrowly escaped
the Presidency.

Several years ago Commodore Perry was appointed Commissioner
Extraordinary to the Imperial Court of Japan, with unlimited power to
treat. It is hardly worthwhile to mention that he never exercised that
power; he never treated anybody in that country, although he patiently
submitted to a vast amount of that sort of thing when the opportunity
was afforded him at the expense of the Japanese officials. He returned
from his mission full of honors and foreign whisky, and was welcomed
home again by the plaudits of a grateful nation.

After the war was ended, Mr. Perry removed to Providence, Rhode Island,
where he produced a complete revolution in medical science by inventing
the celebrated "Pain Killer" which bears his name. He manufactured this
liniment by the ship-load, and spread it far and wide over the suffering
world; not a bottle left his establishment without his beneficent
portrait upon the label, whereby, in time, his features became as well
known unto burned and mutilated children as Jack the Giant Killer's.

When pain had ceased throughout the universe Mr. Perry fell to writing
for a livelihood, and for years and years he poured out his soul in
pleasing and effeminate poetry.

His very first effort, commencing:

"How doth the little busy bee

Improve each shining hour," etc.-

gained him a splendid literary reputation, and from that time forward
no Sunday-school library was complete without a full edition of his
plaintive and sentimental "Perry-Gorics." After great research and
profound study of his subject, he produced that wonderful gem which is
known in every land as "The Young Mother's Apostrophe to Her Infant,"

"Fie! fie! oo itty bitty pooty sing!

To poke oo footsy-tootsys into momma's eye!"

This inspired poem had a tremendous run, and carried Perry's fame into
every nursery in the civilized world. But he was not destined to wear
his laurels undisturbed: England, with monstrous perfidy, at once
claimed the "Apostrophe" for her favorite son, Martin Farquhar Tupper,
and sent up a howl of vindictive abuse from her polluted press against
our beloved Perry. With one accord, the American people rose up in his
defense, and a devastating war was only averted by a public denial
of the paternity of the poem by the great Proverbial over his own
signature. This noble act of Mr. Tupper gained him a high place in the
affection of this people, and his sweet platitudes have been read here
with an ever augmented spirit of tolerance since that day.

The conduct of England toward Mr. Perry told upon his constitution to
such an extent that at one time it was feared the gentle bard would fade
and flicker out altogether; wherefore, the solicitude of influential
officials was aroused in his behalf, and through their generosity he
was provided with an asylum in Sing Sing prison, a quiet retreat in the
state of New York. Here he wrote his last great poem, beginning:

"Let dogs delight to bark and bite,

For God hath made them so--

Your little hands were never made

To tear out each other's eyes with--"

and then proceeded to learn the shoemaker's trade in his new home, under
the distinguished masters employed by the commonwealth.

Ever since Mr. Perry arrived at man's estate his prodigious feet have
been a subject of complaint and annoyance to those communities which
have known the honor of his presence. In 1835, during a great leather
famine, many people were obliged to wear wooden shoes, and Mr. Perry,
for the sake of economy, transferred his boot-making patronage from
the tan-yard which had before enjoyed his custom, to an undertaker's
establishment--that is to say, he wore coffins. At that time he was a
member of Congress from New Jersey, and occupied a seat in front of the
Speaker's throne. He had the uncouth habit of propping his feet upon
his desk during prayer by the chaplain, and thus completely hiding that
officer from every eye save that of Omnipotence alone. So long as the
Hon. Mr. Perry wore orthodox leather boots the clergyman submitted to
this infliction and prayed behind them in singular solitude, under mild
protest; but when he arose one morning to offer up his regular petition,
and beheld the cheerful apparition of Jack Perry's coffins confronting
him, "The jolly old bum went under the table like a sick porpus" (as
Mr. P. feelingly remarks), "and never shot off his mouth in that shanty

Mr. Perry's first appearance on the Pacific Coast was upon the boards
of the San Francisco theaters in the character of "Old Pete" in Dion
Boucicault's "Octoroon." So excellent was his delineation of that
celebrated character that "Perry's Pete" was for a long time regarded as
the climax of histrionic perfection.

Since John Van Buren Perry has resided in Nevada Territory, he has
employed his talents in acting as City Marshal of Virginia, and in
abusing me because I am an orphan and a long way from home, and can
therefore be persecuted with impunity. He was re-elected day before
yesterday, and his first official act was an attempt to get me drunk
on champagne furnished to the Board of Aldermen by other successful
candidates, so that he might achieve the honor and glory of getting me
in the station-house for once in his life. Although he failed in his
object, he followed me down C street and handcuffed me in front of Tom
Peasley's, but officers Birdsall and Larkin and Brokaw rebelled against
this unwarranted assumption of authority, and released me--whereupon I
was about to punish Jack Perry severely, when he offered me six bits to
hand him down to posterity through the medium of this Biography, and I
closed the contract. But after all, I never expect to get the money.

Territorial Enterprise, March 7, 1863


By a sort of instinct we happened in at Almack's just at the moment that
the corks were about to pop, and discovering that we had intruded we
were retreating when Daggett, the soulless, insisted upon our getting
with the Board of Brokers, and we very naturally did so. The President
had already been toasted, the Vice-President had likewise been
complimented in the same manner. Mr. Mitchell had delivered an address
through his unsolicited mouth-piece, Mr. Daggett, whom he likened unto
Baalam's ass--and very aptly too--and the press had been toasted, and
he had attempted to respond and got overcome by something--feelings
perhaps--when that ever lasting, omnipresent, irrepressible,
"Unreliable" crowded himself into the festive apartment, where he shed
a gloom upon the Board of Brokers, and emptied their glasses while they
made speeches. The imperturbable impudence of that iceberg surpasses
anything we ever saw. By a concerted movement the young man was
partially put down at length, however, and the Board launched out into
speech-making again, but finally somebody put up five feet of "Texas,"
which changed hands at eight dollars a foot, and from that they branched
off into a wholesale bartering of "wildcat"--for their natures were
aroused by the first smell of blood of course--and we adjourned to make
this report. The Board will begin its regular meetings Monday next.

Territorial Enterprise, between March 1-12, 1863


CALICO SKIRMISH.--Five Spanish women, of unquestionable character, were
arraigned before Judge Atwill yesterday, some as principals and some
as accessories to a feminine fight of a bloodthirsty description in
A street. It was proved that one of them drew a navy revolver and a
bowie-knife and attempted to use them upon another of the party, but
being prevented, she fired three shots through the floor, for the
purpose of easing her mind, no doubt. She was bound over to keep the
peace, and the whole party dismissed.

Territorial Enterprise, between Feb. 24--March 31, 1863

[portion of letter from Carson City]


I arrived in this noisy and bustling town of Carson at noon to-day, per
Langton's express. We made pretty good time from Virginia, and might
have made much better, but for Horace Smith, Esq., who rode on the box
seat and kept the stage so much by the head she wouldn't steer. I
went to church, of course,--I always go to church when I--when I go to
church--as it were. I got there just in time to hear the closing hymn,
and also to hear the Rev. Mr. White give out a long metre doxology,
which the choir tried to sing to a short-metre tune. But there wasn't
music enough to go around: consequently, the effect was rather singular,
than otherwise. They sang the most interesting parts of each line,
though, and charged the balance to "profit and loss;" this rendered the
general intent and meaning of the doxology considerably mixed, as far as
the congregation were concerned, but inasmuch as it was not addressed to
them, anyhow, I thought it made no particular difference.

By an easy and pleasant transition, I went from church to jail. It was
only just down stairs--for they save men eternally in the second story
of the new court house, and damn them for life in the first. Sheriff
Gasherie has a handsome double office fronting on the street, and its
walls are gorgeously decorated with iron convict-jewelry. In the rear
are two rows of cells, built of bomb-proof masonry and furnished with
strong iron doors and resistless locks and bolts. There was but one
prisoner--Swayze, the murderer of Derickson--and he was writing; I do
not know what his subject was, but he appeared to be handling it in a
way which gave him great satisfaction...

Territorial Enterprise, March--April, 1863


A grand examination of candidates for positions as teachers in our
public schools was had yesterday in one of the rooms of the
Public School in this city. Some twenty-eight candidates were
present--twenty-three of whom were ladies and five gentlemen. We do the
candidates but simple justice when we say that we have never seen
more intelligent faces in a crowd of the size. The following gentlemen
constituted the Board of Examiners: Dr. Geiger, Mr. J. W. Whicher and
John A. Collins. We observed that Messrs. Feusier, Adkison and Robinson
of the Board of Trustees were also present yesterday. Printed questions
are given to each of the candidates, the answers to which are written
out and handed in with the signature of the applicant appended. These
are all examined in private by the Board, and those who have best
acquitted themselves are selected as teachers. In all, we believe, about
twelve teachers are to be chosen. Upon each of the following subjects a
great number of questions are to be answered: General questions, methods
of teaching, object teaching; spelling, reading, writing, defining,
arithmetic, grammar, geography, natural philosophy, history of the
United States, physiology and hygiene, chemistry, algebra, geometry,
natural history, astronomy--in all, eighteen subjects, with about as
many questions upon each. Yesterday they had got as far as the ninth
subject, grammar, at the time of our visit, and we presume have got
but little further. To-day the examination will be resumed. If there is
anything that terrifies us it is an examination. We don't even like
an examination in a Police Court. In vain we looked from face to face
yesterday through the whole list of candidates for signs of fright or
trepidation. All appeared perfectly at ease, though quite in earnest.
We took a look at some of the questions and were made very miserable by
barely glancing them over. We became much afraid that some member of the
Board would suddenly turn upon us and require us on pain of death or a
long imprisonment, to answer some of the questions. Under the head of
"Object Teaching," we found some ten questions--some of them, like a
wheel within a wheel, containing ten questions in one. We barely glanced
at the list, reading here and there a question, when we felt great beads
of perspiration starting out upon our brow--our massive intellect oozing
out. Happening to read a question like this, "Name four of the faculties
of children that are earliest developed," we at once became anxious to
get out of the room. We expected each moment that one of the Board would
seize us by the collar and ask, "Why is it?" or something of the kind,
and we wanted to leave--thought we would feel better in the open air.
When the answers of all the candidates are opened and read we will try
to be on hand; we are anxious for information on those "four faculties."
We think the above a good deal like the conundrum about the young man
who "went to the Sandwich Islands; learned the language of the Kanakas,
came home, got married, got drunk, went crazy, was sent to Stockton--Why
is it?" Then under the same head we noticed ten questions about mining
for silver ores and ten more about the reduction of silver ores.
Why these twenty-three "school marms" are expected to be posted on
amalgamating processes, is more than we can guess. As this is a mining
country, we presume it is necessary for a lady to give satisfactory
answers to such questions as the following, before being entrusted with
the education of our little Washoeites: "What is your opinion of the
one-ledge theory? Have you seen the Ophir horse? Have you conscientious
scruples as to black dyke? Are you committed to the sage-brush process?
Give your opinion on vein matter, and state your reasons for thinking
so; and tell wherein you differ with those who do not agree with you."

Territorial Enterprise, April 3, 1863


A DISTINGUISHED VISITOR.--Madame Clara Kopka arrived in Virginia a few
days since, and is still sojourning in the city. To many of our citizens
the name will be unfamiliar, yet such is by no means the case in the
hospitals and upon the battle-fields of the East, where she has devoted
nearly twelve months to arduous labor in tending the sick and wounded
soldiers. In this service she has endured all the hardships and
privations of camp life, without hope or desire of reward, and to the
serious detriment of her health. She comes among us partly to satisfy
a taste for travel, and partly to gather renewed vigor by a change
of climate. She asked Mayor Arick for a homestead, supposing, in the
simplicity of her heart, that the barren but beautiful landscape which
surrounds Virginia was free to any who thought they could make use of
it. Unfortunately, this is not the case; but the Silver Terrace Company
could give Madame the homestead she covets without inconveniencing
themselves in the least, and we have an idea that they will consider it
a pleasure to do so. Madame Kopka brings with her a bundle of letters
from military officers, from brigade and subordinate surgeons in the
army, from Secretary Stanton, and letters of recommendation to General
Halleck, all of which speak of her in the highest terms of praise.
We cannot spare room for these letters, but we publish two newspaper
extracts which will answer every purpose, perhaps. The first is from a
long article, written by an army surgeon, in the N. Y. Home Journal of
September 13th, and the other from the N. Y Tribune of July 5th...

THE LOIS ANN.--This claim is situated in a ravine which runs up in a
northwesterly direction out of American Flat, and is on the Ophir Grade,
about two miles and a half from Gold Hill. The ledge did not crop out,
but was uncovered by a small slide in the hillside, and found by Mr.
Lightford, the present Superintendent, and located some four or five
weeks ago. A well timbered incline has since been sunk upon it to the
depth of twenty-five feet, and work in it is still going on day and
night, although a stream of water from the vein materially interferes
with the operations of the men. In the bottom of the incline the ledge
is about ten feet wide, has a casing of blue clay, and is well defined;
a great quantity of quartz has been taken from it, which looks exactly
like third or fourth-class Ophir, but it won't pay to crush yet awhile,
although choice specimens of it have assayed as high as ninety-two
dollars to the ton. We visited the mine in company with Mr. H. C. Brown
and Mr. Lightford, the Superintendent, and we share their opinion, that
there is big pay rock in it somewhere, and it is only necessary to sink
a reasonable depth to find it. Such promising indications as have been
found in this claim are not often discovered so near the surface. Three
north extensions have been located on the Lois Ann, and shafts sunk, and
the lead struck on the first and third, the character and appearance
of the rock in both instances proving identical with that of the
original--coarse crystalized quartz, of a porous nature, and of a dark
blue color like Comstock rock. There are fourteen hundred feet in the
discovery claim, and the property is owned principally by mill men of
Gold Hill. One of the best indications about the Lois Ann is at present
much the most troublesome--we refer to the stream of water which pours
from the ledge; work in the incline will have to be suspended on account
of it and a tunnel commenced from the ravine--this will be about
a hundred and fifty feet long, and will tap the lead at a depth of
seventy-five feet. A mill-site has been taken up in the vicinity with
the intention of turning the water to useful account in case the ledge
proves as excellent as it is expected it will. Another good-looking
ledge lies back of the Lois Ann, and parallel with it, which belongs to
the same company. There is a claim of a thousand feet in the vicinity of
these leads which is called the Zanesville, and the rock from it pays in
gold from the very surface; every pound of it is saved, and mill men
who have tested it say it will yield about a hundred dollars to the ton;
there is only a mere trace of silver in it. The ledge is only about two
feet wide, in the bottom of a shaft twelve feet deep, but is increasing
in width slowly; possibly the Zanesville may peter out and go to
thunder, but there is no prospect of such a result at present. It is
rich, but as it is only a gold ledge, and is so small, we have less
confidence in it than in the Lois Ann.

ISLAND MILL.--The Island Mill, built on Carson river by Mr. Hite, of
Gold Hill, is about completed now, and the machinery was set in motion
yesterday to see if there was anything wrong about it. The result was
satisfactory, and the Island Mill will go to work formally and forever
next Tuesday.

GOULD & CURRY.--They struck it marvelously rich in a new shaft in the
Gould & Curry mine last Saturday night. We saw half a ton of native
silver at the mouth of the tunnel, on Tuesday, with a particle of quartz
in it here and there, which could be readily distinguished without the
aid of a glass. That particular half ton will yield some where in the
neighborhood of ten thousand dollars. We have long waited patiently
for the Gould & Curry to flicker out, but we cannot discover
much encouragement about this last flicker. However, it is of no
consequence--it was a mere matter of curiosity anyhow; we only wanted to
see if she would, you know.

THE MINSTRELS.--We were present at La Plata Hall about two minutes last
night, and heard Sam. Pride's banjo make a very excellent speech in
English to the audience. The house was crowded to suffocation.

Territorial Enterprise, April 12, 1863

[partial excerpt]


In the first place, I must impress upon you that when you are dressing
for church, as a general thing, you mix your perfumes too much; your
fragrance is sometimes oppressive; you saturate yourself with cologne
and bergamot, until you make a sort of Hamlet's Ghost of yourself, and
no man can decide, with the first whiff, whether you bring with you air
from Heaven or from hell. Now, rectify this matter as soon as possible;
last Sunday you smelled like a secretary to a consolidated drug store
and barber shop. And you came and sat in the same pew with me; now don't
do that again.

In the next place when you design coming to church, don't lie in bed
until half past ten o'clock and then come in looking all swelled and
torpid, like a doughnut. Do reflect upon it, and show some respect for
your personal appearance hereafter.

There is another matter, also, which I wish to remonstrate with you
about. Generally, when the contribution box of the missionary department
is passing around, you begin to look anxious, and fumble in your vest
pockets, as if you felt a mighty desire to put all your worldly wealth
into it--yet when it reaches your pew, you are sure to be absorbed
in your prayer-book, or gazing pensively out of the window at far-off
mountains, or buried in meditation, with your sinful head supported by
the back of the pew before you. And after the box is gone again, you
usually start suddenly and gaze after it with a yearning look, mingled
with an expression of bitter disappointment (fumbling your cash again
meantime), as if you felt you had missed the one grand opportunity for
which you had been longing all your life. Now, to do this when you have
money in your pockets is mean. But I have seen you do a meaner thing. I
refer to your conduct last Sunday, when the contribution box arrived at
our pew--and the angry blood rises to my cheek when I remember with what
gravity and sweet serenity of countenance you put in fifty cents and
took out two dollars and a half...

Territorial Enterprise, between April 16-18, 1863


For a day or two a rumor has been floating around, that five Indians had
been smothered to death in a tunnel back of Gold Hill, but no one seemed
to regard it in any other light than as a sensation hoax gotten up for
the edification of strangers sojourning within our gates. However,
we asked a Gold Hill man about it yesterday, and he said there was no
shadow of a jest in it--that it was a dark and terrible reality. He gave
us the following story as being the version generally accepted in Gold
Hill:--That town was electrified on Sunday morning with the intelligence
that a noted desperado had just murdered two Virginia policemen, and had
fled in the general direction of Gold Hill. Shortly afterward, some one
arrived with the exciting news that a man had been seen to run and hide
in a tunnel a mile or a mile and a half west of Gold Hill. Of course
it was Campbell--who else would do such a thing, on that particular
morning, of all others? So a party of citizens repaired to this
spot, but each felt a natural delicacy about approaching an armed and
desperate man in the dark, and especially in such confined quarters;
wherefore they stopped up the mouth of the tunnel, calculating to hold
on to their prisoner until some one could be found whose duty would
oblige him to undertake the disagreeable task of bringing forth the
captive. The next day a strong posse went up, rolled away the
stones from the mouth of the sepulchre, went in and found five dead
Indians!--three men, one squaw and one child, who had gone in there
to sleep, perhaps, and been smothered by the foul atmosphere after
the tunnel had been closed up. We still hope the story may prove a
fabrication, notwithstanding the positive assurances we have received
that it is entirely true. The intention of the citizens was good, but
the result was most unfortunate. To shut up a murderer in a tunnel was
well enough, but to leave him there all night was calculated to
impair his chances for a fair trial--the principle was good, but the
application was unnecessarily "hefty." We have given the above story for
truth--we shall continue to regard it as such until it is disproven.

Territorial Enterprise, April 19--30, 1863


ELECTRICAL MILL MACHINERY.--Mr. Wm. L. Card, of Silver City, has
invented a sort of infernal machine, which is to turn quartz mills by
electricity. It consists of wheels and things, and--however, we could
not describe it without getting tangled. Mr. Card assures us that he can
apply his invention to all the mills in Silver City, and work the whole
lot with one powerful Grove battery. We believe--and if we had galvanic
sense enough to explain the arrangement properly, others would also. A
patent has already been applied for.

Territorial Enterprise, May 19-21, 1863


SAN FRANCISCO, May 16, 1863

EDS. ENTERPRISE: The Unreliable, since he has been here, has conducted
himself in such a reckless and unprincipled manner that he has brought
the whole Territory into disrepute and made its name a reproach, and its
visiting citizens objects of suspicion. He has been a perfect nightmare
to the officers of the Occidental Hotel. They give him an excellent
room, but if, in prowling about the house, he finds another that suits
him better, he "locates" it ( that is his slang way of expressing it).
Judging by his appearance what manner of man he was, the hotel clerk at
first gave him a room immediately under the shingles--but it was found
impossible to keep him there. He said he could not stand it, because
spinning round and round, up that spiral staircase, caused his beer to
ferment, and made him foam at the mouth like a soda fountain; wherefore,
he descended at the dead of night and "jumped" a room on the second
floor (the very language he used in boasting of the exploit). He said
they served an injunction on him there, "and," says he, "if Bill Stewart
had been down here, Mark, I'd have sued to quiet title, and I'd
have held that ground, don't you know it?" And he sighed; and after
ruminating a moment, he added, in a tone of withering contempt: "But
these lawyers won't touch a case unless a man has some rights;
humph! they haven't any more strategy into 'em than a clam. But Bill
Stewart--thunder! Now, you just take that Ophir suit that's coming off
in Virginia, for instance--why, God bless you, Bill Stewart'll worry the
witnesses, and bullyrag the Judge, and buy up the jury and pay for 'em;
and he'll prove things that never existed--hell! What won't he prove!
That's the idea--what won't he prove, you know? Why, Mark, I'll tell you
what he done when--"

The Unreliable was interrupted here by a messenger from the hotel
office, who handed him several sheets of legal cap, very neatly folded.
He took them and motioned the young man to retire. "Now," said he,
confidentially, "do you know what that is, Sweetness?" I said I thought
it was a wash bill, or a hotel bill, or some thing of that kind. His
countenance beamed with admiration: "You've struck it, by the Lord; yes,
sir, that's just what it is--it's another of them d--d assessments; they
levied one on me last week, and I meant to go and see a lawyer about it,
but"--The Unreliable simmered down into a profound reverie, and I waited
in silence to see what species of villainy his fertile brain would bring
forth. At last he started up exultingly, with a devilish light in his
eye: "I've got them in the door, Mark! They've been trying all they knew
how to freeze me out, but they can't win. This hotel ain't incorporated
under the laws of the Territory, and they can't collect--they are only
a lot of blasted tenants in common! O, certainly" (with bitter scorn
), "they'll get rich playing me for a Chinaman, you know." I forbear to
describe how he reveled in the prospect of swindling the Occidental out
of his hotel bill--it is too much humiliation even to think of it.

This young man insisted upon taking me to a concert last night, and I
refused to go at first, because I am naturally suspicious of him, but
he assured me that the Bella Union Melodeon was such a chaste and
high-toned establishment that he would not hesitate to take any lady
there who would go with him. This remark banished my fears, of course,
and we proceeded to the house of amusement. We were the first arrivals
there. He purchased two pit-tickets for twenty- five cents apiece; I
demurred at this kind of hospitality, and reminded him that orchestra
seats were only fifty cents, and private boxes two dollars and a half.
He bent on me a look of compassion, and muttered to himself that some
people have no more sense than a boiled carrot--that some people's
intellects were as dark as the inside of a cow. He walked into the pit,
and then climbed over into the orchestra seats as coolly as if he had
chartered the theatre. I followed, of course. Then he said, "Now, Mark,
keep your eye skinned on that doorkeeper, and do as I do." I did as
he did, and I am ashamed to say that he climbed a stanchion and took
possession of a private box. In due course several gentlemen performers
came on the stage, and with them half a dozen lovely and blooming
damsels, with the largest ankles you ever saw. In fact, they were
dressed like so many parasols--as it were. Their songs, and jokes, and
conundrums were received with rapturous applause. The Unreliable said
these things were all copyrighted; it is probably true--I never heard
them anywhere else. He was well pleased with the performance, and every
time one of the ladies sang, he testified his approbation by knocking
some of her teeth out with a bouquet. The Bella Union, I am told, is
supported entirely by Washoe patronage. There are forty-two single
gentlemen here from Washoe, and twenty-six married ones; they were
all at the concert last night except two--both unmarried. But if the
Unreliable had not told me it was a moral, high-toned establishment, I
would not have observed it.

Hon. Wm. H. Davenport, of Virginia, and Miss Mollie Spangler, of
Cincinnati, Ohio, were married here on the 10th instant, at the
residence of Colonel John A. Collins. Among the invited guests were
Judge Noyes and lady, Messrs. Beecher and Franz, of Virginia, and Mr.
Mark Twain; among the uninvited I noticed only the Unreliable. It will
probably never be known what became of the spoons. The bridal party left
yesterday for Sacramento, and may be expected in Virginia shortly. Old
fat, jolly B. C. Howard, a Lyon county Commissioner, is here, at the
Russ House, where he will linger a while and then depart for his old
home in Vermont, to return again in the Fall. Col. Raymond, of the
Zephyr-Flat mill, is in the city, also, and taking up a good deal of
room in Montgomery street and the Bank Exchange; he has invested in
some fast horses, and I shall probably take them over to Washoe shortly.
There are multitudes of people from the Territory here at the three
principal hotels--consequently provisions are scarce. If you will send
a few more citizens down we can carry this election, and fill all these
city offices with Carson and Virginia men.

There is not much doing in stocks just now, especially in the Boards.
But I suspect it is the case here as it is in Virginia, that the Boards
do precious little of the business. Many private sales of Union ( Gold
Hill) and Yellow Jacket have transpired here during the past week at
much higher prices than you quote those stocks at. Three hundred feet of
Golden Gate changed hands at $100 per foot, and fifty feet at $110; but
a telegram from Virginia yesterday, announcing that they had "struck
it"--and moderately rich--in the San Francisco, raised both stocks
several figures, as also the Golden Eagle (first south extension of the
Golden Gate), which had been offered the day before at $30 a foot. Two
hundred feet of Oriental were sold at private sale to-day at $7 a foot.
Now, you hear no talk in Virginia but the extraordinary dullness of the
San Francisco market. Humbug! It may be dull in the Boards, but it is
lively enough on the street. If you doubt it, say so, and I will move
around a little and furnish you with all the statistics you want.

I meant to say something glowing and poetical about the weather, but the
Unreliable has come in and driven away refined emotion from my breast.
He says: "Say it's bully, you tallow brained idiot! that's enough;
anybody can understand that; don't write any of those infernal, sick
platitudes about sweet flowers, and joyous butterflies, and worms and
things, for people to read before breakfast. You make a fool of yourself
that way; everybody gets disgusted with you; stuff! be a man or a mouse,
can't you?"

I must go out now with this conceited ass--there is no other way to get
rid of him.


Territorial Enterprise, June 21-24, 1863




EDS. ENTERPRISE:--I have just received, per Wells-Fargo, the following
sweet scented little note, written in a microscopic hand in the center
of a delicate sheet of paper--like a wedding invitation or a funeral
notice--and I feel it my duty to answer it:

VIRGINIA, June 16.

"MR. MARK TWAIN:--Do tell us something about the fashions. I am dying to
know what the ladies of San Francisco are wearing. Do, now, tell us all
you know about it, won't you? Pray excuse brevity, for I am in such a
hurry. BETTIE.

"P. S.--Please burn this as soon as you have read it."

"Do tell us"--and she is in "such a hurry." Well, I never knew a girl in
my life who could write three consecutive sentences without italicising
a word. They can't do it, you know. Now, if I had a wife, and
she--however, I don't think I shall have one this week, and it is hardly
worthwhile to borrow trouble.

Bettie, my love, you do me proud. In thus requesting me to fix up the
fashions for you in an intelligent manner, you pay a compliment to my
critical and observant eye and my varied and extensive information,
which a mind less perfectly balanced than mine could scarcely
contemplate without excess of vanity. Will I tell you something about
the fashions? I will, Bettie--you better bet you bet, Betsey, my
darling. I learned those expressions from the Unreliable; like all the
phrases which fall from his lips, they are frightfully vulgar--but then
they sound rather musical than otherwise.

A happy circumstance has put it in my power to furnish you the fashions
from headquarters--as it were, Bettie: I refer to the assemblage of
fashion, elegance and loveliness called together in the parlor of the
Lick House last night--[a party given by the proprietors on the occasion
of my paying up that little balance due on my board bill.] I will give a
brief and lucid description of the dresses worn by several of the ladies
of my acquaintance who were present. Mrs. B. was arrayed in a superb
speckled foulard, with the stripes running fore and aft, and with
collets and camails to match; also, a rotonde of Chantilly lace,
embroidered with blue and yellow dogs, and birds and things, done in
cruel, and edged with a Solferino fringe four inches deep--lovely. Mrs.
B. is tall, and graceful and beautiful, and the general effect of her
costume was to render her appearance extremely lively.

Miss J. W. wore a charming robe polonais of scarlet ruche a la vieille,
with yellow fluted flounces of rich bombazine, fourteen inches wide;
low neck and short sleeves; also a Figaro veste of bleached
domestic--selvedge edge turned down with a back-stitch, and trimmed with
festoons of blue chicoree taffetas--gay?--I reckon not. Her head-dress
was the sweetest thing you ever saw: a bunch of stately ostrich
plumes--red and white--springing like fountains above each ear, with a
crown between, consisting of a single fleur de soliel, fresh from the
garden--Ah, me! Miss W. looked enchantingly pretty; however, there was
nothing unusual about that--I have seen her look so, even in a milder

Mrs. J. B. W. wore a heavy rat-colored brocade silk, studded with large
silver stars, and trimmed with organdy; balloon sleeves of nankeen
pique, gathered at the wrist, cut bias and hollowed out some at
the elbow; also, a bournous of black Honiton lace, scolloped, and
embroidered in violent colors with a battle piece representing the
taking of Holland by the Dutch; low neck and high-heeled shoes; gloves;
palm leaf fan; hoops; her head-dress consisted of a simple maroon
colored Sontag, with festoons of blue illusion depending from it; upon
her bosom reposed a gorgeous bouquet of real sage brush, imported from
Washoe. Mrs. W. looked regally handsome. If every article of dress
worn by her on this occasion had been multiplied seven times, I do not
believe it would have improved her appearance any.

Miss C. wore an elegant Cheveux de la Reine (with ruffles and furbelows
trimmed with bands of guipre round the bottom), and a mohair Garibaldi
shirt; her unique head-dress was crowned with a graceful pomme de terre
(Limerick French), and she had her hair done up in papers--greenbacks.
The effect was very rich, partly owing to the market value of the
material, and partly to the general loveliness of the lady herself.

Miss A. H. wore a splendid Lucia de Lammermoor, trimmed with green
baize: also, a cream-colored mantilla shaped pardessus, with a deep gore
in the neck, and embellished with a wide greque of taffetas ribbon, and
otherwise garnished with ruches, and radishes and things. Her coiffure
was a simple wreath of sardines on a string. She was lovely to a fault.

Now, what do you think of that effort, Bettie (I wish I knew your other
name) for an unsanctified newspaper reporter, devoid of a milliner's
education? Doesn't it strike you that there are more brains and fewer
oysters in my head than a casual acquaintance with me would lead one to
suppose? Ah, well--what I don't know, Bet, is hardly worth the finding
out, I can tell you. I could have described the dresses of all
the ladies in that party, but I was afraid to meddle with those of
strangers, because I might unwittingly get something wrong, and give
offense. You see strangers never exercise any charity in matters of
this kind--they always get mad at the least inaccuracies of description
concerning their apparel, and make themselves disagreeable. But if you
will just rig yourself up according to the models I have furnished you,
Bets, you'll do, you know--you can weather the circus.

You will naturally wish to be informed as to the most fashionable style
of male attire, and I may as well give you an idea of my own personal
appearance at the party. I wore one of Mr. Lawlor's shirts, and Mr.
Ridgway's vest, and Dr. Wayman's coat, and Mr. Camp's hat, and Mr.
Paxton's boots, and Jerry Long's white kids, and Judge Gilchrist's
cravat, and the Unreliable's brass seal-ring, and Mr. Tollroad
McDonald's pantaloons--and if you have an idea that they are anyways
short in the legs, do you just climb into them once, sweetness. The
balance of my outfit I gathered up indiscriminately from various
individuals whose names I have forgotten and have now no means of
ascertaining, as I thoughtlessly erased the marks from the different
garments this morning. But I looked salubrious, B., if ever a man did.

Territorial Enterprise, August 2, 1863


WHEREAS, Thomas Fitch, editor of the Union, having taken umbrage at an
article headed "The Virginia Union--not the Federal," written by Joseph
T. Goodman, our chief editor, and published in these columns; and
whereas said Fitch having challenged said Goodman to mortal combat,
naming John Church as his "friend;" and whereas the said Goodman having
accepted said challenge, and chosen Thos. Peasley to appoint the means
of death--

Therefore, on Friday afternoon it was agreed between the two seconds
that the battle should transpire at nine o'clock yesterday morning
(which would have been late in the day for most duelists, but it was
fearfully early for newspaper men to have to get up)--place, the foot
of the canon below the Gould & Curry mill; weapons, navy six-shooters;
distance, fifteen paces; conditions, the first fire to be delivered at
the word, the others to follow at the pleasure of the targets, as long
as a chamber in their pistols remained loaded. To say that we felt a
little proud to think that in our official capacity we were about to
rise above the recording of ordinary street broils and the monotonous
transactions of the Police Court to delineate the ghastly details of a
real duel, would be to use the mildest of language. Much as we deplored
the state of things which was about to invest us with a new dignity, we
could not help taking much comfort in the reflection that it was out
of our power, and also antagonistic to the principles of our class,
to prevent the state of things above mentioned. All conscientious
scruples--all generous feelings must give way to our inexorable
duty--which is to keep the public mind in a healthy state of excitement,
and experience has taught us that blood alone can do this. At midnight,
in company with young Wilson, we took a room at the International,
to the end that through the vigilance of the watchman we might not be
suffered to sleep until past nine o'clock. The policy was good--our
strategy was faultless. At six o'clock in the morning we were on the
street, feeling as uncomfortable in the gray dawn as many another early
bird that founded its faith upon the inevitable worm and beheld too
late that that worm had failed to come to time, for the friends of the
proposed deceased were interfering to stop the duel, and the officers
of the law were seconding their efforts. But the two desperadoes finally
gave these meddlers the slip, and drove off with their seconds to the
dark and bloody ground. Whereupon young Wilson and ourself at once
mounted a couple of Olin's fast horses and followed in their wake at the
rate of a mile a minute.

Since then we enjoy more real comfort in standing up than sitting down,
being neither iron-clad nor even half-soled. But we lost our bloody
item at last--for Marshal Perry arrived early with a detachment of
constables, and also Deputy Sheriff Blodgett came with a lot of blasted
Sheriffs, and the battle ground lying and being in Storey county, these
miserable, meddling whelps arrested the whole party and marched them
back to town. And at the very moment that we were suffering for a duel.
The whole force went off down there and left the city at the mercy of
thieves and incendiaries. Now, that is about all the strategy those
fellows know. We have only to add that Goodman and Fitch were obliged to
give bonds in the sum of $5,000 each to keep the peace, and if anything
were lacking to make this robbery of the reporters complete, that last
circumstance furnished the necessary material. In interfering with our
legitimate business, Mr. Perry and Mr. Blodgett probably think they are
almighty smart, but we calculate to get even with them.

Territorial Enterprise, August 4, 1863

[portion of original]


We are to blame for giving "the Unreliable" an opportunity to
misrepresent us, and therefore refrain from repining to any great extent
at the result. We simply claim the right to deny the truth of every
statement made by him in yesterday's paper, to annul all apologies he
coined as coming from us, and to hold him up to public commiseration as
a reptile endowed with no more intellect, no more cultivation, no more
Christian principle than animates and adorns the sportive jackass rabbit
of the Sierras. We have done.

Territorial Enterprise, Aug. 19, 1863

[from Steamboat Springs, Nevada Territory; dated August 18, 1863]


EDS. ENTERPRISE: Never mind the date--I haven't known what day of the
month it was since the fourth of July. In reality, I am not well enough
to write, but am angry now, and like our old Methodist parson at home in
Missouri, who started in to produce rain by a season of fervent prayer,
"I'll do it or bust." I notice in this morning's ENTERPRISE a lame,
impotent abortion of a biography of Marshal Perry, and I cannot
understand what you mean by it. You either want to impose upon the
public with an incorrect account of that monster's career (compiled from
items furnished by himself, I'll warrant), or else you wish to bring
into disrepute my own biography of him, which is the only correct and
impartial one ever published. Which is it? If you really desired that
the people should know the man they were expected to vote for, why did
you not republish that history? By referring to it you will see that
your own has not a word of truth in it. Jack Perry has made you believe
he was born in New York, when in reality he was born in New Jersey; he
has told you he was a pressman--on the contrary, he is by occupation a
shoemaker,--by nature a poet, and by instinct a great moral humbug. If
I chose, I could enumerate a dozen more instances to prove that, in his
own vulgar phraseology, Jack Perry has successfully played you for a
Chinaman. I suppose if he had told you the size of his boots was No. 5,
you wouldn't have known enough to refrain from publishing the absurdity.
Now the next time you want any facts about Jack Perry, perhaps you had
better refer to the standard biography compiled by myself, or else let
me hash them up for you. You have rushed into these biographies like a
crazy man, and I suppose you have found out by this time that you are no
more fitted for that sort of thing than I am for a circus rider (which
painfully reminds me that my last horseback trip at Lake Bigler, on that
razor-bladed beast of Tom Nye's, has lengthened my legs and shortened
my body some). If I could devote more time to composition and less to
coughing, I would write all those candidates' biographies over again,
just to show you how little you know about it.

I must have led a gay life at Lake Bigler, for it seems a month since I
flew up there on the Pioneer coach, alongside of Hank Monk, the king of
stage drivers. But I couldn't cure my cold. I was too careless. I
went to the lake (Lake Bigler I must beg leave to call it still,
notwithstanding, if I recollect rightly, it is known among sentimental
people as either Tahoe Lake or Yahoo Lake--however, one of the last
will do as well as the other, since there is neither sense nor music
in either of them), with a voice like a bull frog, and by indulging
industriously in reckless imprudence, I succeeded in toning it down to
an impalpable whisper in the course of seven days. I left there in the
Pioneer coach at half-past one on Monday morning, in company with Mayor
Arick, Mr. Boruck and young Wilson (a nice party for a Christian to
travel with, I admit), and arrived in Carson at five o'clock--three
hours and a half out. As nearly as I can estimate it, we came down the
grade at the rate of a hundred miles an hour; and if you do not know how
frightfully deep those mountain gorges look, let me recommend that you
go, also, and skim along their edges at the dead of night.

I left Carson at two o'clock with Dyer--Dyer, the polite Dyer, the
accommodating--Dyer, of the Carson and Steamboat stage line, and reached
the Steamboat Springs Hotel at dusk, where all others who are weary and
hungry are invited to come, and be handsomely provided for by Messrs.
Holmes & Stowe. At Washoe we ate a supper of unimpeachable squareness at
the Washoe Exchange, where I found Hon. J. K. Lovejoy, Dr. Bowman, and
Captain Rawlings--there may have been other old acquaintances present,
but the champagne that Lovejoy drank confused my vision so much that
I cannot recollect whether there were or not. I learned here that the
people who own ranches along Steamboat creek are very indignant at Judge
Mott for granting an injunction to the Pleasant Valley Mill Company,
whereby they are prohibited from using the water in the stream upon
their lands. They say the mill company purchased the old Smith ranch and
that portion of the creek which passes through it, and now they assume
the right to deprive ranchmen owning property two or three miles above
their lines from irrigating their lands with water which the mill
company never before pretended to claim.

They further state that the mill men gave bonds in the trivial sum of
$1,000, whereas the damage already done the crops by the withdrawal of
the water amounts to more than $20,000. Again, the idea is that the mill
men need the water to wet a new ditch which they have been digging,
and after that is accomplished they will pay the amount of the bond
and withdraw the injunction. More over--so the story runs--Judge Mott
promised a decision in the case three weeks ago, and has not kept his
word. The citizens of Galena, in mass meeting assembled, have drawn up
a petition praying that the Judge will redress their grievances to-day,
with out further delay. If the prayer is unheeded, they will turn the
water on their ranches to-morrow in defiance of the order of the court.
I believe I have recounted all these facts just as I got them; but if
I haven't, I can't help it, because I have lost my note-book again.
I think I could lose a thousand note-books a week if I had them. And,
moreover, if you can ferret out the justice of the above proceedings,
you are a better lawyer than I am--and here comes Orrick Johnson's
Virginia stage again, and I shall have to fling in my benediction before
I sing the doxology, as usual. Somehow or other, I can never get through
with what I have to say.


Territorial Enterprise, Aug. 25, 1863



August 23, 1863.


EDS. ENTERPRISE: I have overstepped my furlough a full week--but then
this is a pleasant place to pass one's time. These springs are ten miles
from Virginia, six or seven from Washoe City and twenty from Carson.
They are natural--the devil boils the water, and the white steam puffs
up out of creviccs in the earth, along the summits of a series of low
mounds extending in an irregular semi-circle for more than a mile. The
water is impregnated with a dozen different minerals, each one of
which smells viler than its fellow, and the sides of the springs are
embellished with very pretty parti-colored incrustations deposited by
the water. From one spring the boiling water is ejected a foot or more
by the infernal force at work below, and in the vicinity of all of them
one can hear a constant rumbling and surging, somewhat resembling the
noises peculiar to a steamboat in motion--hence the name.


The Steamboat Springs Hotel is very pleasantly situated on a grassy
flat, a stone's throw from the hospital and the bath houses. It is
capable of accommodating a great many guests. The rooms are large,
"hard-finished" and handsomely furnished; there is an abundant supply of
pure water, which can be carried to every part of the house, in case of
fire, by means of hose; the table is furnished with fresh vegetables
and meats from the numerous fine ranches in the valley, and lastly, Mr.
Stowe is a pleasant and accommodating landlord, and is ably seconded by
Messrs. Haines, Ellsworth and Bingham. These gentlemen will never allow
you to get ill-humored for want of polite attention--as I gratefully
remember, now, when I recall the stormy hours of Friday, when that
accursed "Wake-up Jake" was in me. But I haven't got to that, yet.
God bless us! it is a world of trouble, and we are born to sorrow
and tribulation--yet, am I chiefest among sinners, that I should be
prematurely damned with "Wake-up Jake," while others not of the elect
go free? I am trying to go on with my letter, but this thing bothers me;
verily, from having "Wake-up Jake" on the stomach for three days, I
have finally got it on the brain. I am grateful for the change. But I


Dr. Ellis, the proprietor of the Springs, has erected a large,
tastefully designed, and comfortable and well ventilated hospital, close
to the bath-houses, and it is constantly filled with patients afflicted
with all manner of diseases. It would be a very profitable institution,
but a great many who come to it half dead, and leave it again restored
to robust health, forget to pay for the benefits they have received.
Others, when they arrive, confess at once that they are penniless,
yet few men could look upon the sunken cheeks of these, and upon their
attenuated forms and their pleading, faded eyes, and refuse them the
shelter and assistance we all may need some day. Without expectation of
reward, Dr. Ellis gives back life, hope and health to many a despairing,
poverty stricken devil; and when I think of this, it seems so strange
that he could have had the meanness to give me that "Wake up-Jake."
However, I am wandering away from the subject again. All diseases
(except confirmed consumption,) are treated successfully here. A
multitude of invalids have attended these baths during the past three
years, yet only an insignificant number of deaths have occurred among
them. I want to impress one thing upon you: it is a mistaken notion that
these Springs were created solely for the salvation of persons suffering
venereal diseases. True, the fame of the baths rests chiefly upon the
miracles performed upon such patients, and upon others afflicted with
rheumatism, erysipelas, etc., but then all ordinary ailments can be
quickly and pleasantly cured here without a resort to deadly physic.
More than two-thirds of the people who come here are afflicted with
venereal diseases--fellows who know that if "Steamboat" fails with them
they may as well go to trading feet with the undertaker for a box--yet
all here agree that these baths are none the less potent where other
diseases are concerned. I know lots of poor, feeble wretches in Virginia
who could get a new lease of life by soaking their shadows in Steamboat
Springs for a week or two. However, I must pass on to


My friend Jim Miller has charge of these. Within a few days the new
bath-house will be finished, and then twelve persons may bathe at once,
or if they be sociable and choose to go on the double-bed principle,
four times as many can enjoy the luxury at the same time. Persons
afflicted with loathsome diseases use bath-rooms which are never entered
by the other patients. You get up here about six o'clock in the morning
and walk over to the bath-house; you undress in an ante room and take a
cold shower-bath--or let it alone, if you choose; then you step into
a sort of little dark closet floored with a wooden grating, up through
which come puffs and volumes of the hottest steam you ever performed to,
(because the awkwardest of us feel a hankering to waltz a little under
such circumstances, you know), and then if you are alone, you resolve to
have company thenceforward, since to swap comments upon your sensations
with a friend, must render the dire heatless binding upon the human
constitution. I had company always, and it was the pleasantest thing in
the world to see a thin-skinned invalid cavorting around in the vapory
obscurity, marveling at the rivers of sweat that coursed down his
body, cursing the villainous smell of the steam and its bitter, salty
taste--groping around meanwhile, for a cold corner, and backing finally,
into the hottest one, and darting out again in a second, only remarking
"Outch!"--and repeating it when he sits down, and springs up the
same moment off the hot bench. This was fun of the most comfortable
character; but nothing could be more agreeable than to put your eye
to the little square hole in the door, and see your boiled and smoking
comrade writhing under the cold shower-bath, to see him shrink till his
shoulders are level with the top of his head, and then shut his eyes
and gasp and catch his breath, while the cruel rain pattered down on his
back and sent a ghastly shiver through every fibre of his body. It will
always be a comfort to me to recall these little incidents. After the
shower-bath, you return to the ante-room and scrub yourself all over
with coarse towels until your hide glows like a parlor carpet--after
which, you feel as elastic and vigorous as an acrobat. Then if you are
sensible, you take no exercise, but just eat your breakfast and go to
bed--you will find that an hour's nap will not hurt you any.


A few days ago I fell a victim to my natural curiosity and my
solicitude for the public weal. Everybody had something to say about
"wake-up-Jake." If a man was low-spirited; if his appetite failed
him; if he did not sleep well at night; if he were costive; if he were
bilious; or in love; or in any other kind of trouble; or if he doubted
the fidelity of his friends or the efficacy of his religion, there was
always some one at his elbow to whisper, "Take a 'wake-up,' my boy." I
sought to fathom the mystery, but all I could make out of it was that
the "Wake-up Jake" was a medicine as powerful as "the servants of the
lamp," the secret of whose decoction was hidden away in Dr. Ellis'
breast. I was not aware that I had any use for the wonderful "wake-up,"
but then I felt it to be my duty to try it, in order that a suffering
public might profit by my experience--and I would cheerfully see that
public suffer perdition before I would try it again. I called upon Dr.
Ellis with the air of a man who would create the impression that he
is not so much of an ass as he looks, and demanded a "Wake up-Jake" as
unostentatiously as if that species of refreshment were not at all new
to me. The Doctor hesitated a moment, and then fixed up as repulsive a
mixture as ever was stirred together in a table-spoon. I swallowed
the nauseous mess, and that one meal sufficed me for the space of
forty-eight hours. And during all that time, I could not have enjoyed a
viler taste in my mouth if I had swallowed a slaughter-house. I lay down
with all my clothes on, and with an utter indifference to my fate here
or hereafter, and slept like a statue from six o'clock until noon. I got
up, then, the sickest man that ever yearned to vomit and couldn't. All
the dead and decaying matter in nature seemed buried in my stomach, and
I "heaved, and retched, and heaved again," but I could not compass a
resurrection--my dead would not come forth. Finally, after rumbling, and
growling, and producing agony and chaos within me for many hours, the
dreadful dose began its work, and for the space of twelve hours it
vomited me, and purged me, and likewise caused me to bleed at the nose.

I came out of that siege as weak as an infant, and went to the bath with
Palmer, of Wells, Fargo & Co., and it was well I had company, for it was
about all he could do to keep me from boiling the remnant of my life out
in the hot steam. I had reached that stage wherein a man experiences
a solemn indifference as to whether school keeps or not. Since then, I
have gradually regained my strength and my appetite, and am now animated
by a higher degree of vigor than I have felt for many a day. 'Tis well.
This result seduces many a man into taking a second, and even a third
"wake-up-Jake," but I think I can worry along without any more of them.
I am about as thoroughly waked up now as I care to be. My stomach never
had such a scouring out since I was born. I feel like a jug. If I could
get young Wilson or the Unreliable to take a "wake-up Jake," I would do
it, of course, but I shall never swallow another myself--I would sooner
have a locomotive travel through me. And besides, I never intend
to experiment in physic any more, just out of idle curiosity. A
"wake-up-Jake" will furbish a man's machinery up and give him a fresh
start in the world--but I feel I shall never need anything of that sort
any more. It would put robust health, and life and vim into young Wilson
and the Unreliable--but then they always look with suspicion upon any
suggestion that I make.


Well, I am going home to Virginia to-day, though I dislike to part from
the jolly boys (not to mention iced milk for breakfast, with eggs laid
to order, and spiced oysters after midnight with the Reverend Jack
Holmes and Bingham) at the Steamboat Springs Hotel. In conclusion, let
me recommend to such of my fellow citizens as are in feeble health, or
are wearied out with the cares of business, to come down and try the
hotel, and the steam baths, and the facetious "wake up-Jake." These will
give them rest, and moving recreation--as it were.


Territorial Enterprise, August 27, 1863


YE BULLETIN CYPHERETH.--The Bulletin folks have gone and swallowed an
arithmetic; that arithmetic has worked them like a "wake up-Jake," and
they have spewed up a multitude of figures. We cypher up the importance
of the Territory sometimes so recklessly that our self-respect lies
torpid within us for weeks afterwards--but we see now that our most
preposterous calculations have been as mild as boardinghouse milk; we
perceive that we haven't the nerve to do up this sort of thing with
the Bulletin. It estimates the annual yield of the precious metals at
$730,000,000! Bully! They say figures don't lie--but we doubt it. We
are distanced--that must be confessed; yet, appalled as we are, we will
venture upon the Bulletin's "boundless waste" of figures, and take the
chances. A Gould & Curry bar with $2,000 in it weighs nearly 100 pounds;
$100,000 worth of their bullion would weigh between two and two and
a half tons; it would take two of Wells Fargo's stages to carry that
$100,000 without discommoding the passengers; it would take 100 stages
to carry $5,000,000, 2,000 stages to carry $100,000,000, and 14,600
stages to carry the Bulletin's annual yield of $730,000,000! Wells,
Fargo & Co. transport all the bullion out of the Territory in their
coaches, and to attend to this little job, they would have to send
forty stages over the mountains daily throughout the year, Sundays not
excepted, and make each of the forty carry considerably more than a ton
of bullion!--yet they generally send only two stages, and the greatest
number in one day, during the heaviest rush, was six coaches; they
didn't each carry a ton of bullion, though, old smarty from Hongkong.
The Bulletin also estimates the average yield of ore from our mines at
$1,000 a ton! Bless your visionary soul, sixty dollars--where they get
it "regular like"--is considered good enough in Gold Hill, and it is a
matter of some trouble to pick out many tons that will pay $400. From
sixty to two hundred is good rock in the Ophir, and when that company,
or the Gould & Curry, or the Spanish, or any other of our big companies
get into a chamber that pays over $500, they ship it to the Bay, my boy.
But they don't ship thousands of tons at a time, you know. In Esmeralda
and Humboldt, ordinary "rich rock" yields $100 to $200, and when better
is found, it is shipped also. Reese River appears to be very rich, but
you can't make an "average" there yet awhile; let her mines be developed
first. We place the average yield of the ore of our Territory at $100
a ton--that is high enough; we couldn't starve, easily, on forty-dollar
rock. Lastly, the Bulletin puts the number of our mills at 150. That is
another mistake; the number will not go over a hundred, and we would not
be greatly amazed if it even fell one or two under that. While we are on
the subject, though, we might as well estimate the "annual yield" of
the precious metals, also; we did not intend to do it at first. Mr.
Valentine, Wells Fargo's handsome and accomplished agent, has handled
all the bullion shipped through the Virginia office for many a month.
To his memory--which is excellent--we are indebted for the following
exhibit of the company's business in the Virginia office since the first
of January, 1862: From January 1st to April 1st, about $270,000 worth of
bullion passed through that office; during the next quarter, $570,000;
next quarter, $800,000; next quarter, $956,000; next quarter,
$1,275,000; and for the quarter ending on the 30th of last June, about
$1,600,000. Thus in a year and a half, the Virginia office only shipped
$5,330,000 in bullion. During the year 1862 they shipped $2,615,000, so
we perceive the average shipments have more than doubled in the last six
months. This gives us room to promise for the Virginia office $500,000
a month for the year 1863, and now, perhaps, judging by the
steady increase in the business, we too, like the Bulletin, are
"underestimating," somewhat. This gives us $6,000,000 for the year. Gold
Hill and Silver City together can beat us--we will give them eight, no,
to be liberal, $10,000,000. To Dayton, Empire City, Ophir and Carson
City, we will allow an aggregate of $8,000,000, which is not over the
mark, perhaps, and may possibly be a little under it. To Esmeralda
we give $4,000,000. To Reese River and Humboldt $2,000,000, which is
liberal now, but may not be before the year is out. So we prognosticate
that the yield of bullion this year will be about $30,000,000. Placing
the number of mills in the Territory at 100, this gives to each the
labor of $300,000 in bullion during the twelve months. Allowing them to
run 300 days in the year, (which none of them more than do) this makes
their work average $ 1,000 a day--one ton of the Bulletin's rock, or ten
of ours. Say the mills average 20 tons of rock a day and this rock worth
$50 as a general thing, and you have got the actual work of our
100 mills figured down just about to a spot--$1,000 a day each, and
$30,000,000 a year in the aggregate. Oh no!--we have never been to
school--we don't know how to cypher. Certainly not--we are probably
a natural fool, but we don't know it. Anyhow, we have mashed the
Bulletin's estimate all out of shape and cut the first left-hand figure
off its $730,000,000 as neatly as a regular banker's clerk could have
done it.

Territorial Enterprise, September 4-5, 1863


I hope some bird will catch this Grub the next time he calls Lake Bigler
by so disgustingly sick and silly a name as "Lake Tahoe." I have removed
the offensive word from his letter and substituted the old one, which
at least has a Christian English twang about it whether it is pretty
or not. Of course Indian names are more fitting than any others for our
beautiful lakes and rivers, which knew their race ages ago, perhaps, in
the morning of creation, but let us have none so repulsive to the ear as
"Tahoe" for the beautiful relic of fairy-land forgotten and left asleep
in the snowy Sierras when the little elves fled from their ancient
haunts and quitted the earth. They say it means "Fallen Leaf"--well
suppose it meant fallen devil or fallen angel, would that render its
hideous, discordant syllables more endurable? Not if I know myself.
I yearn for the scalp of the soft-shell crab--be he injun or white
man--who conceived of that spoony, slobbering, summer-complaint of a
name. Why, if I had a grudge against a half-price nigger, I wouldn't be
mean enough to call him by such an epithet as that; then, how am I to
hear it applied to the enchanted mirror that the viewless spirits of the
air make their toilets by, and hold my peace? "Tahoe"--it sounds as
weak as soup for a sick infant. "Tahoe" be--forgotten! I just saved my
reputation that time. In conclusion, "Grub," I mean to start to Lake
Bigler myself, Monday morning, or somebody shall come to grief.


Territorial Enterprise, September 17, 1863


SAN FRANCISCO, September 13, 1863


EDITORS ENTERPRISE: The trip from Virginia to Carson by Messrs.
Carpenter & Hoog's stage is a pleasant one, and from thence over the
mountains by the Pioneer would be another, if there were less of it. But
you naturally want an outside seat in the day time, and you feel a good
deal like riding inside when the cold night winds begin to blow; yet if
you commence your journey on the outside, you will find that you will
be allowed to enjoy the desire I speak of unmolested from twilight to
sunrise. An outside seat is preferable, though, day or night. All you
want to do is to prepare for it thoroughly. You should sleep forty-eight
hours in succession before starting so that you may not have to do
anything of that kind on the box. You should also take a heavy overcoat
with you. I did neither. I left Carson feeling very miserable for want
of sleep, and the voyage from there to Sacramento did not refresh me
perceptibly. I took no overcoat and I almost shivered the shirt off
myself during that long night ride from Strawberry Valley to Folsom.
Our driver was a very companionable man, though, and this was a happy
circumstance for me, because, being drowsy and worn out, I would have
gone to sleep and fallen overboard if he had not enlivened the dreary
hours with his conversation. Whenever I stopped coughing, and went to
nodding, he always watched me out of the corner of his eye until I got
to pitching in his direction, and then he would stir me up and inquire
if I were asleep. If I said "No" (and I was apt to do that), he always
said "it was a bully good thing for me that I warn't, you know," and
then went on to relate cheerful anecdotes of people who had got to
nodding by his side when he wasn't noticing, and had fallen off and
broken their necks. He said he could see those fellows before him now,
all jammed and bloody and quivering in death's agony--"G'lang! d--n that
horse, he knows there's a parson and an old maid in side, and that's
what makes him cut up so; I've saw him act jes' so more'n a thousand
times!" The driver always lent an additional charm to his conversation
by mixing his horrors and his general information together in this way.
"Now," said he, after urging his team at a furious speed down the grade
for a while, plunging into deep bends in the road brimming with a thick
darkness almost palpable to the touch, and darting out again and again
on the verge of what instinct told me was a precipice, "Now, I seen a
poor cuss--but you're asleep again, you know, and you've rammed your
head agin' my side-pocket and busted a bottle of nasty rotten medicine
that I'm taking to the folks at the Thirty-five Mile House; do you
notice that flavor? ain't it a ghastly old stench? The man that takes
it down there don't live on anything else it's vittles and drink to him;
anybody that ain't used to him can't go a-near him; he'd stun
'em--he'd suffocate 'em; his breath smells like a grave yard after an
earthquake--you Bob! I allow to skelp that ornery horse, yet, if he
keeps on this way; you see he's been on the over land till about two
weeks ago, and every stump he sees he cal'lates it's an Injun." I was
awake by this time, holding on with both hands and bouncing up and down
just as I do when I ride a horse back. The driver took up the thread of
his discourse and proceeded to soothe me again: "As I was a saying,
I see a poor cuss tumble off along here one night--he was monstrous
drowsy, and went to sleep when I'd took my eye off of him for a
moment--and he fetched up agin a boulder, and in a second there wasn't
anything left of him but a promiscus pile of hash! It was moonlight,
and when I got down and looked at him he was quivering like jelly, and
sorter moaning to himself, like, and the bones of his legs was sticking
out through his pantaloons every which way, like that." ( Here the
driver mixed his fingers up after the manner of a stack of muskets, and
illuminated them with the ghostly light of his cigar.) "He warn't in
misery long though. In a minute and a half he was deader'n a smelt--Bob!
I say I'll cut that horse's throat if he stays on this route another
week." In this way the genial driver caused the long hours to pass
sleeplessly away, and if he drew upon his imagination for his fearful
histories, I shall be the last to blame him for it, because if they had
taken a milder form I might have yielded to the dullness that oppressed
me, and got my own bones smashed out of my hide in such a way as to
render me useless forever after--unless, perhaps, some one chose to turn
me to account as an uncommon sort of hat-rack.


Not a face in either stage was washed from the time we left Carson until
we arrived in Sacramento; this will give you an idea of how deep the
dust lay on those faces when we entered the latter town at eight o'clock
on Monday morning. Mr. Billet, of Virginia, came in our coach, and
brought his family with him--Mr. R. W. Billet of the great Washoe Stock
and Exchange Board of Highwaymen--and instead of turning his complexion
to a dirty cream color, as it generally serves white folks, the dust
changed it to the meanest possible shade of black: however, Billet isn't
particularly white, anyhow, even under the most favorable circumstances.
He stepped into an office near the railroad depot, to write a note, and
while he was at it, several lank, gawky, indolent immigrants, fresh
from the plains, gathered around him. Missourians--Pikes--I can tell
my brethren as far as I can see them. They seemed to admire Billet very
much, and the faster he wrote the higher their admiration rose in their
faces, until it finally boiled over in words, and one of my countrymen
ejaculated in his neighbor's ear,--"Dang it, but he writes mighty well
for a nigger!"


When I arrived in San Francisco, I found there was no one in town--at
least there was no body in town but "the Menken"--or rather, that no one
was being talked about except that manly young female. I went to see her
play "Mazeppa," of course. They said she was dressed from head to foot
in flesh-colored "tights," but I had no opera-glass, and I couldn't see
it, to use the language of the inelegant rabble. She appeared to me to
have but one garment on--a thin tight white linen one, of unimportant
dimensions; I forget the name of the article, but it is indispensable to
infants of tender age--I suppose any young mother can tell you what
it is, if you have the moral courage to ask the question. With the
exception of this superfluous rag, the Menken dresses like the Greek
Slave; but some of her postures are not so modest as the suggestive
attitude of the latter. She is a finely formed woman down to her knees;
if she could be herself that far, and Mrs. H. A. Perry the rest of the
way, she would pass for an unexceptionable Venus. Here every tongue
sings the praises of her matchless grace, her supple gestures, her
charming attitudes. Well, possibly, these tongues are right. In the
first act, she rushes on the stage, and goes cavorting around after
"Olinska"; she bends herself back like a bow; she pitches headforemost
at the atmosphere like a battering ram; she works her arms, and her
legs, and her whole body like a dancing-jack: her every movement is as
quick as thought; in a word, without any apparent reason for it, she
carries on like a lunatic from the beginning of the act to the end of
it. At other times she "whallops" herself down on the stage, and rolls
over as does the sportive pack-mule after his burden is removed. If
this be grace then the Menken is eminently graceful. After a while
they proceed to strip her, and the high chief Pole calls for the "fiery
untamed steed"; a subordinate Pole brings in the fierce brute, stirring
him up occasionally to make him run away, and then hanging to him like
death to keep him from doing it; the monster looks round pensively upon
the brilliant audience in the theatre, and seems very willing to stand
still--but a lot of those Poles grab him and hold on to him, so as to be
prepared for him in case he changes his mind. They are posted as to his
fiery untamed nature, you know, and they give him no chance to get loose
and eat up the orchestra. They strap Mazeppa on his back, fore and aft,
and face upper most, and the horse goes cantering up-stairs over the
painted mountains, through tinted clouds of theatrical mist, in a brisk
exciting way, with the wretched victim he bears unconsciously digging
her heels into his hams, in the agony of her sufferings, to make him go
faster. Then a tempest of applause bursts forth, and the curtain falls.
The fierce old circus horse carries his prisoner around through the back
part of the theatre, behind the scenery, and although assailed at every
step by the savage wolves of the desert, he makes his way at last to his
dear old home in Tartary down by the foot lights, and beholds once more,
O, gods! the familiar faces of the fiddlers in the orchestra. The noble
old steed is happy, then, but poor Mazeppa is insensible--"ginned out"
by his trip, as it were. Before the act closes, however, he is restored
to consciousness and his doting old father, the king of Tartary; and the
next day, without taking time to dress--without even borrowing a shirt,
or stealing a fresh horse--he starts off on the fiery untamed, at the
head of the Tartar nation, to exterminate the Poles, and carry off his
own sweet Olinska from the Polish court. He succeeds, and the curtain
falls upon a bloody combat, in which the Tartars are victorious.
"Mazeppa" proved a great card for Maguire here; he put it on the boards
in first-class style, and crowded houses went crazy over it every night
it was played. But Virginians will soon have an opportunity of seeing it
themselves, as "the Menken" will go direct from our town there without
stopping on the way. The '"French Spy" was played last night and the
night before, and as this spy is a frisky Frenchman, and as dumb as an
oyster, Miss Menken's extravagant gesticulations do not seem so overdone
in it as they do in "Mazeppa." She don't talk well, and as she goes
on her shape and her acting, the character of a fidgety "dummy" is
peculiarly suited to her line of business. She plays the Spy, without
words, with more feeling than she does Mazeppa with them.

I am tired writing, now, so you will get no news in this letter. I have
got a note-book full of interesting hieroglyphics, but I am afraid that
by the time I am ready to write them out, I shall have forgotten what
they mean. The lady who asked me to furnish her with the Lick House
fashions, shall have them shortly--or if I ever get time, I will dish up
those displayed at the great Pioneer ball, at Union Hall, last Wednesday


Territorial Enterprise, October 1863

[portion of original]

First Annual Fair of the Washoe Agricultural, Mining and Mechanical

Carson City, October 19,1863


Late on Saturday afternoon, after the announcement of the awards in
class A had been made, all the stock that had received premiums formed
in a sort of triumphal procession, with the band at the head, and the
stock following in the order of precedence to which they were entitled
by the decision of the Judges, and marched down to the city, through
the principal streets of which they paraded two or three times back and
forth before final dismissal. The parade of so many fine animals in the
streets was really a very fine sight, and was witnessed by everybody
with much pleasure, being the first grand parade of the kind ever seen
in the Territory.


While waiting at the race course on Saturday for the arrival of some of
the officers from the Pavilion, some of the boys belonging to the brass
band in attendance concluded to do what they could for the amusement
of those present, and so took possession of the platform from which the
awards were to be made. One of the party was introduced to the audience
as a very eloquent gentleman, who had volunteered to favor those present
with a speech on the success of the Fair. The speaker took his position
and made a polite bow to his audience, another of the musicians prepared
to take down the speech and the third acted in the capacity of bottle
holder. The speaker soon launched forth, and in a few moments had
worked himself up into a tremendous state of excitement. His lips worked
convulsively, though no sound escaped them. He pointed toward the rocky
peaks of the Sierras, then at the surrounding brown hills, finishing
with a complacent wave of his hand toward the broad valley in which he
stood. He was leaning far over the railing of the platform in the
middle of a most eloquent appeal to the crowd, occasionally pointing
heavenward, when his bottle-holder was suddenly overtaken by a violent
fit of admiration, which he felt constrained to manifest by a most
vigorous stamping upon the boards of the platform--so vigorous that he
burst through one of the boards and hung suspended by the arms. A keg of
nails was kicked over in the row, and the great oratorical effort came
to an end amid the prolonged shouts and cheers of the crowd. I was
favored with a look at the speech as taken down by the reporter, and
give the following extract: "_____! _____! _____? _____! (?)_____;
_____, _____, _____!!! _____." There were some ten pages in the same
style, but as your readers will perhaps be better pleased with the
extract I have given than with the whole speech, as taken down by the
reporter, I will omit the balance.


The challenge of "Deuces" against the field on Friday, for $300,
catch-weights, barring "Breckinridge," was accepted by "Kate Mitchell,"
but to-day she was lame and forfeited. After the failure of these horses
to run, a race was gotten up between three Spanish nags, for a purse
of $27.50, single dash of a mile. In starting "Grey Dick" and the black
nag, "Sheep," got off at the tap of the drum, but the sorrel horse
"Split-ear," was held by his owner. "Sheep" and "Grey Dick" dashed
forward, when the cry of "Come back!" was raised by several, also by a
voice or two on the Judges' stand. "Grey Dick's" rider came back,
but the rider of "Sheep" (Johnny Craddock), after riding back a short
distance and ascertaining that the drum had tapped, turned about and
rode leisurely around the track, winning the race and purse, according
to the decision of the Judges and the rules of the Carson Racing Club.
The decision was that once the drum was tapped, it was a go--the riders
not being required to pay any attention to the calls to come back from
anybody. Outside bets were declared drawn. A new race was now made up
between the same nags. Theo. Winters paid the entrance fees for the
three horses, amounting to $15; purse, $20; single dash of a mile. The
horses got a very fair start; on the first quarter "Sheep" got the lead,
"Grey Dick" came next, and "Split-ear" brought up the rear. "Sheep"
still held his own on nearing the home-stretch, but "Grey Dick" soon
began to gain on him, and they were soon head and head. Both riders used
the whip freely on the home-stretch and the race was more stubbornly
contested than any one that has taken place on the track this week. The
betting had been very free on "Sheep" and "Grey Dick," "Sheep" seeming
to be the favorite, and the excitement was intense. "Sheep" passed the
score 6 inches ahead of "Grey Dick," winning the purse; time, 1:58. A
purse of $16.25 was now made up, the same horses to run, single dash of
one mile. "Grey Dick" had the track, "Split-ear" second, "Sheep" third.
The horses got a very good start. "Grey Dick" led for the first half
mile, "Sheep" following closely and "Split-ear" far behind. "Grey Dick"
kept the lead down the home stretch, the others following in about the
same order in which they passed the half mile post, and came in three
lengths ahead of "Sheep," "Split-ear" being three or four hundred yards
behind. "Grey Dick" won the purse; time, 2:08. A purse of $25 was now
made up for a slow race--the slowest horse of the three to win--riders
to change horses. "Split-ear" had the track, "Sheep" second, "Grey Dick"
third. "Sheep's" owners had given him all the water he could drink
on the sly, and from the start he was behind and kept at least three
hundred yards behind all the way round the track, "Grey Dick" came in
first, "Split-ear" second and "Sheep" rolled along far behind. "Sheep"
won the race and purse; time 2:17.


There are some things that kept running through my mind while looking
through the city of Carson, and considering the peculiarities of its
site, that I cannot refrain from jotting down here, though not coming
strictly under the head of the Fair. However, they were suggested by
improvements made on the Plaza in preparing for the holding of the Fair,
and may, therefore, be considered as one of its legitimate fruits.
I think that every person who attended the Fair must have been most
forcibly struck with the great improvement made in the appearance of
the Plaza by the planting of evergreens on it in front of and about the
Pavilion; this first led me to consider the site of the town and the
many advantages its location afforded for making it one of the prettiest
and pleasantest cities on the Eastern Slope. Situated on a wide, and
almost level, plain, at but a short distance from the eastern base of
the Sierras, with numerous fine mountain streams tumbling down the hills
behind it, Carson might have every street as well supplied with ditches
of water as are those of Salt Lake City. The water from these ditches
might be made to cause a thousand gardens in the city to "bloom as
the rose." At no very great expense, the water of one of the mountain
streams nearby might be brought upon the Plaza in pipes, and used to
supply fountains in various parts of the grounds; about these fountains
willows and plats of flowers might be planted, which, with a liberal
sprinkling of cottonwood and other trees in various parts, would make it
a far prettier place than the "Willows," near San Francisco. With some
such improvements Carson would be apt to attract nearly all the wealthy
men owning mines and mills, or doing business in this part of the
Territory--they would all wish to reside in or near so pretty and
pleasant a place. If the Plaza was turned into a park as pleasant and
beautiful as it might be made, it would soon become a general place of
resort on Saturdays and Sundays for all the young people, and pleasure
seekers in general, of all the neighboring towns and cities. If the
present Pavilion is allowed to stand where it is, it should be raised at
least six to eight feet higher than it is by putting under it some kind
of basement; then, with a broad flight of steps at the entrance of each
wing, it would be a really imposing edifice, and one that would at once
elicit the admiration of every stranger passing through the town. Mr.
Curry, one of the most public-spirited men in Carson, has already put
a beautiful and substantial fence around the Plaza, and has offered to
build a fountain that will throw a stream some twenty-five feet high,
provided the Water Company, now about supplying water to the city, would
furnish the amount of water needed. The people of Carson have, as I
remarked above, the foundations for the handsomest city on the Eastern
Slope, and the fault will lie with themselves if they don't make it


I have not yet been able to obtain the exact amount of all the receipts
of the Fair, and will therefore defer all mention of sums. The receipts
in full will shortly be obtained and published; I may, however, say that
I heard it stated that the receipts would be much more than adequate to
the liquidation of all outstanding liabilities of the Society, and that
the $2,000 appropriated by the Legislature could be allowed to stand
over untouched for the Fair of next year. A number of the members of the
Society have acted most generously, and done much toward contributing to
the financial success of the institution. Theodore Winters in the start
donated the Society $200; afterwards he presented to the Society all
his winnings, amounting to $225, and has in various other ways aided the
institution to near the amount of $1,000. The owners of the Carson Race
Course, as I took occasion to mention in a former letter, acted in the
most liberal and handsome manner by the Society, in giving them the free
use of all their grounds and buildings, to say nothing of the fact of
their having worked all the week like Trojans for the success of the
Fair. Mr. Gillespie, the Secretary, and many other officers of the
Society, labored day and night during the progress of the exhibition,
that nothing might be left undone that could further the plans or aid
the triumphant result of an institution which too many had predicted
would die in an inglorious fizzle. But we have no "fizzle" to chronicle.
We have not, it is very true, made the grandest display of the kind ever
seen on the Pacific Coast, but there have been much worse. We came
to the exhibition, many of us, with a feeling of dubiousness in our
hearts--half ashamed to tell where we were going, even when on the way.
When we came away, we felt quite proud, held up our heads, and said we'd
"been to the Fair!" We have most of us been dwellers in the mountains
and delvers in the mines, and knew little of the agricultural capacity
of our valleys; we had rather supposed that we should be obliged always
to look to California for our supplies of such articles of farm produce
as we might need; but we have now had a faint glimpse of what may be
done upon our soil, and feel no hesitancy in calling upon all who wish
to till the earth in a land where the soil yields a bountiful return,
and the best market in the world is open at the door of the cultivator,
to come and occupy the land lying ready and free for all settlers. All
who are now engaged in the cultivation of the soil of Washoe, and were
present at the exhibition--and even those who only hear of it from the
reports going forth--will now go to work in greater earnestness and
with more confidence. Especially will this be the case with those
contemplating fruit culture; and we shall expect soon to see orchards in
all our valleys and vineyards gracing the slopes of all our hills.

Territorial Enterprise, October 28, 1863


From Abram Curry, who arrived here yesterday afternoon from Carson,
we have learned the following particulars concerning a bloody massacre
which was committed in Ormsby county night before last. It seems that
during the past six months a man named P. Hopkins, or Philip Hopkins,
has been residing with his family in the old log house just at the
edge of the great pine forest which lies between Empire City and Dutch
Nick's. The family consisted of nine children--five girls and four
boys--the oldest of the group, Mary, being nineteen years old, and the
youngest, Tommy, about a year and a half. Twice in the past two months
Mrs. Hopkins, while visiting in Carson, expressed fears concerning the
sanity of her husband, remarking that of late he had been subject to
fits of violence, and that during the prevalence of one of these he had
threatened to take her life. It was Mrs. Hopkins' misfortune to be given
to exaggeration, however, and but little attention was paid to what she
said. About ten o'clock on Monday evening Hopkins dashed into Carson on
horseback, with his throat cut from ear to ear, and bearing in his hand
a reeking scalp from which the warm, smoking blood was still dripping,
and fell in a dying condition in front of the Magnolia saloon. Hopkins
expired in the course of five minutes, without speaking. The long red
hair of the scalp he bore marked it as that of Mrs. Hopkins. A number of
citizens, headed by Sheriff Gasherie, mounted at once and rode down
to Hopkins' house, where a ghastly scene met their gaze. The scalpless
corpse of Mrs. Hopkins lay across the threshold, with her head split
open and her right hand almost severed from the wrist. Near her lay
the ax with which the murderous deed had been committed. In one of
the bedrooms six of the children were found, one in bed and the
others scattered about the floor. They were all dead. Their brains had
evidently been dashed out with a club, and every mark about them seemed
to have been made with a blunt instrument. The children must have
struggled hard for their lives, as articles of clothing and broken
furniture were strewn about the room in the utmost confusion. Julia
and Emma, aged respectively fourteen and seventeen, were found in the
kitchen, bruised and insensible, but it is thought their recovery is
possible. The eldest girl, Mary, must have taken refuge, in her terror,
in the garret, as her body was found there, frightfully mutilated, and
the knife with which her wounds had been inflicted still sticking in her
side. The two girls, Julia and Emma, who had recovered sufficiently to
be able to talk yesterday morning, state that their father knocked them
down with a billet of wood and stamped on them. They think they were the
first attacked. They further state that Hopkins had shown evidence
of derangement all day, but had exhibited no violence. He flew into a
passion and attempted to murder them because they advised him to go to
bed and compose his mind. Curry says Hopkins was about forty-two years
of age, and a native of Western Pennsylvania; he was always affable and
polite, and until very recently we had never heard of his ill treating
his family. He had been a heavy owner in the best mines of Virginia and
Gold Hill, but when the San Francisco papers exposed the game of cooking
dividends in order to bolster up our stocks he grew afraid and sold out,
and invested to an immense amount in the Spring Valley Water Company of
San Francisco. He was advised to do this by a relative of his, one of
the editors of the San Francisco Bulletin, who had suffered pecuniarily
by the dividend-cooking system as applied to the Daney Mining Company
recently. Hopkins had not long ceased to own in the various claims on
the Comstock lead, however, when several dividends were cooked on his
newly acquired property, their water totally dried up, and Spring Valley
stock went down to nothing. It is presumed that this misfortune drove
him mad and resulted in his killing himself and the greater portion of
his family. The newspapers of San Francisco permitted this water company
to go on borrowing money and cooking dividends, under cover of which
cunning financiers crept out of the tottering concern, leaving the crash
to come upon poor and unsuspecting stockholders, without offering to
expose the villainy at work. We hope the fearful massacre detailed above
may prove the saddest result of their silence.

Territorial Enterprise, October 29, 1863

[the text of this article is from C. A. V. Putman's "Dan De Quille and
Mark Twain," published in the Salt Lake City Tribune on April 25, 1898.
It may be based upon memory and incomplete.]


The story published in the Enterprise reciting the slaughter of a family
near Empire was all a fiction. It was understood to be such by all
acquainted with the locality in which the alleged affair occurred. In
the first place, Empire City and Dutch Nick's are one, and in the next
there is no "great pine forest" nearer than the Sierra Nevada mountains.
But it was necessary to publish the story in order to get the fact
into the San Francisco papers that the Spring Valley Water company
was "cooking" dividends by borrowing money to declare them on for its
stockholders. The only way you can get a fact into a San Francisco
journal is to smuggle it in through some great tragedy.

Territorial Enterprise, November, 1863


Carson City, November 7, 1863

EDS. ENTERPRISE: This has been a busy week--a notable and a historical
week--and the only one which has yet passed over this region, perhaps,
whose deeds will make any important stir in the outside world. Some
dozens of people in America have heard of Nevada Territory (which they
vaguely understand to be in Virginia City, though they have no definite
idea as to where Virginia City is) as the place which sends silver
bricks to the Sanitary fund; and some other dozens have heard of Washoe,
without exactly knowing whether the name refers to the Northwest passage
or to the source of the Nile--but when it is shouted abroad through
the land that a new star has risen on the flag--a new State born to the
Union--then the nation will wake up for a moment and ask who we are and
where we came from. They will also ascertain that the new acquisition
is called Nevada; they will find out its place on the map, and always
recollect afterwards, in a general way, that it is in North America;
they will see at a glance that Nevada is not in Virginia City and be
surprised at it; they will behold that neither is it in California, and
will be unable to comprehend it; they will learn that our soil is alkali
flats and our shrubbery sage-brush, and be as wise as they were before;
their mouths will water over statistics of our silver bricks, and verily
they will believe that God createth silver in that form. This week's
work is the first step toward giving the world a knowledge of Nevada,
and it is a giant stride, too, for it will provoke earnest inquiry.
Immigration will follow, and wild-cat advance.

This Convention of ours is well worth being proud of. There is not
another commonwealth in the world, of equal population, perhaps, that
could furnish the stuff for its fellow. I doubt if any Constitutional
Convention ever officiated at the birth of any State in the Union which
could boast of such a large proportion of men of distinguished ability,
according to the number of its members, as is the case with ours. There
are thirty-six delegates here, and among them I could point out fifteen
who would rank high in any community, and the balance would not be
second rate in most Legislatures. There are men in this body whose
reputations are not local, by any means--such as Governor Johnson, Wm.
M. Stewart, Judge Bryan, John A. Collins, N. A. H. Ball, General North
and James Stark, the tragedian. Such a constellation as that ought to
shed living light upon our Constitution. General North is President
of the Convention; Governor Johnson is Chairman of the Legislative
Committee--one of the most important among the Standing Committees,
and one which has to aid in the construction of every department of
the Constitution; Mr. Ball occupies his proper place as Chairman of the
Committee on Finance, State Debt, etc.; the Judiciary Committee is
built of sound timber, and is hard to surpass; it is composed of Messrs.
Stewart, Johnson, Larrowe and Bryan.

We shall have a Constitution that we need not be ashamed of, rest
assured; but it will not be framed in a week. Every article in it will
be well considered and freely debated upon.

And just here I would like to know if it would not be as well to get up
a constitutional silver brick or so, and let the Sanitary fund rest
a while. It would cost at least ten thousand dollars to put this
Convention through in anything approaching a respectable style; yet the
sum appropriated by the Legislature for its use was only $3,000, and the
scrip for it will not yield $1,500. The new State will have to shoulder
the present Territorial debt of $90,000, but it seems to me we might
usher her into the world without adding to this an accouchement fee--so
to speak--of ten or fifteen thousand more. Why, the Convention is so
poor that it cannot even furnish newspapers for its members to read;
kerosene merchants hesitate to afford it light; unfeeling draymen
who haul wood to the people, scorn its custom; it elected official
reporters, and for two days could negotiate no desks for them to write
on: it confers upon them no spittoons, to this day; in fact, there is
only one spittoon to every 7 members and they furnish their own fine-cut
into the bargain; in my opinion there are not inkstands enough to go
around, or pens either, for that matter; Col. Youngs, Chairman of
the Committee on Ways and Means (to pay expenses), has gone blind and
baldheaded, and is degenerating into a melancholy lunatic; this is
all on account of his financial troubles; it all comes of his tireless
efforts to bullyrag a precarious livelihood for the Convention out of
Territorial scrip at forty-one cents on the dollar. Will ye see him die,
when fifty-nine cents would save him? I wish I could move the Convention
up to Virginia, that you might see the Delegates worried, and business
delayed or brought to a stand still every hour in the day by the eternal
emptiness of the Treasury. Then would you grow sick, as I have done, of
hearing members caution each other against breeding expense. I begin to
think I don't want the Capital at Virginia if this financial distress
is always going to haunt us. Now, I had forgotten until this moment that
all these secrets about the poverty of the Convention treasury, and the
inoffensive character of Territorial scrip, were revealed to the house
yesterday by Colonel Youngs, with a feeling request that the reporters
would keep silent upon the subject, lest people abroad should smile at
us. I clearly forgot it--but it is too late to mend the matter now.

Hon. Gordon N. Mott is in town, and leaves with his family for San
Francisco to-morrow. He proposes to start to Washington by the steamer
of the 13th.

Mr. Lemmon's little girl, two years old, had her thigh bone broken in
two places this afternoon; she was run over by a wagon. Dr. Tjader set
the limb, and the little sufferer is doing as well as could be expected
under the circumstances.

I used to hear Governor Johnson frequently mentioned in Virginia as a
candidate for the United States Senate from this budding State of ours.
He is not a candidate for that or any other office, and will not become
one. I make this correction on his own authority, and, therefore,
the various Senatorial aspirants need not be afraid to give it full

Messrs. Pete Hopkins and A. Curry have compromised with me, and there
is no longer any animosity existing on either side. They were a little
worried at first, you recollect, about that thing which appeared
recently (I think it was in the Gold Hill News), concerning an
occurrence which has happened in the great pine forest down there at

We sent our last report to you by our stirring official, Gillespie,
Secretary of the Convention. I thought that might account for your not
getting it, in case you didn't get it, you know.


Territorial Enterprise, November 17, 1863


CARSON, November 15, 1863

EDITORS ENTERPRISE: Compiled by our own Reporter! Thus the Virginia
Union of this morning gobbles up the labors of another man. That
"Homographic Record of the Constitutional Convention" was compiled by
Mr. Gillespie, Secretary of the Convention, at odd moments snatched
from the incessant duties of his position, and unassisted by "our own
reporter" or anybody else. Now this isn't fair, you know. Give the devil
his due--by which metaphor I refer to Gillespie, but in an entirely
inoffensive manner, I trust; and do not go and give the credit of this
work to one who is not entitled to it. I copied that chart myself, and
sent it to you yesterday, and I don't see why you couldn't have come out
and done the complimentary thing, by claiming its paternity for me. In
that case, I should not have mentioned this matter at all. But the
main object of the present letter is to furnish you with the revolting
details of--


A massacre, in which no less than a thousand human beings were deprived
of life without a moment's warning of the terrible fate that was
in store for them. This ghastly tragedy was the work of a single
individual--a man whose character was gifted with many strong points,
among which were great benevolence and generosity, and a kindness of
heart which rendered him susceptible of being persuaded to do things
which were really, at times, injurious to himself, and which noble trait
in his nature made him a very slave to those whom he loved--a man whose
disposition was a model of mildness until a fancied wrong drove him
mad and impelled him to the commission of this monstrous crime--this
wholesale offering of blood to the angry spirit of revenge which rankled
in his bosom. It is said that some of his victims were so gashed, and
torn, and mutilated, that they scarcely retained a semblance of human
shape. As nearly as I can get at the facts in the case--and I have taken
unusual pains in collecting them--the dire misfortune occurred about
as follows: It seems that certain enemies ill-treated this man, and in
revenge he burned a large amount of property belonging to them. They
arrested him, and bound him hand and foot, and brought him down to Lehi,
the county seat, for trial. And the Spirit of the Lord came mightily
upon him, and the cords that were upon his arms became as flax that was
burnt with fire, and his bands loosed from off his hands. And he found
a new jaw-bone of an ass, and put forth his hand and took it, and slew a
thousand men there with. When he had finished his terrible tragedy,
the desperado, criminal (whose name is Samson), deliberately wiped his
bloody weapon upon the leg of his pantaloons, and then tried its edge
upon his thumb, as a barber would a razor, simply remarking, "With the
jaw-bone of an ass, heaps upon heaps, with the jaw of an ass have I
slain a thousand men." He even seemed to reflect with satisfaction upon
what he had done, and to derive great comfort from it--as if he would
say, "ONLY a mere thousand--Oh, no I ain't on it, I reckon."

I am sorry that it was necessary for me to furnish you with a narrative
of this nature, because my efforts in this line have lately been
received with some degree of suspicion; yet it is my inexorable duty to
keep your readers posted, and I will not be recreant to the trust, even
though the very people whom I try to serve, upbraid me.


P.S.--Now keep dark, will you? I am hatching a deep plot. I am "laying,"
as it were, for the editor of that San Francisco Evening Journal. The
massacre I have related above is all true, but it occurred a good
while ago. Do you see my drift? I shall catch that fool. He will look
carefully through his Gold Hill and Virginia exchanges, and when he
finds nothing in them about Samson killing a thousand men, he will think
it is another hoax, and come out on me again, in his feeble way, as he
did before. I shall have him foul, then, and I will never let up on him
in the world (as we say in Virginia). I expect it will worry him some,
to find out at last, that one Samson actually did kill a thousand men
with the jaw-bone of one of his ancestors, and he never heard of it


Territorial Enterprise, November 1863

["Ingomar, the Barbarian," was presented at Maguire's Opera House in
Virginia City during the fall of 1863. Mark Twain reviewed the play
after this own fashion:]


ACT. 1.--Mrs. Claughley appears in the costume of a healthy Greek matron
(from Limerick). She urges Parthenia, her daughter, to marry Polydor,
and save her father from being sold out by the sheriff--the old man
being in debt for assessments.

Scene 2.--Polydor--who is a wealthy, spindle-shanked, stingy old
stockbroker--prefers his suit and is refused by the Greek maiden--by the
accomplished Greek maiden, we may say, since she speaks English with out
any perceptible foreign accent.

Scene 3.--The Comanches capture Parthenia's father, old Myron (who is
the chief and only blacksmith in his native village) they tear him from
his humble cot, and carry him away, to Reese River. They hold him as a
slave. It will cost thirty ounces of silver to get him out of soak.

Scene 4.--Dusty times in the Myron family. Their house is
mortgaged--they are without dividends--they cannot "stand the raise."

Parthenia, in this extremity, applies to Polydor. He sneeringly advises
her to shove out after her exiled parent herself.

She shoves!

ACT II.--Camp of the Comanches. In the foreground, several of the
tribe throwing dice for tickets in Wright's Gift Entertainment. In
the background, old Myron packing faggots on a jack. The weary slave
weeps--he sighs--he slobbers. Grief lays her heavy hand upon him.

Scene 2.--Comanches on the war-path, headed by the chief, Ingomar.
Parthenia arrives and offers to remain as a hostage while old Myron
returns home and borrows thirty dollars to pay his ransom with. It was
pleasant to note the varieties of dress displayed in the costumes of
Ingomar and his comrades. It was also pleasant to observe that in
those ancient times the better class of citizens were able to dress
in ornamental carriage robes, and even the rank and file indulged in
Benkert boots, albeit some of the latter appeared not to have been
blacked for several days.

Scene 3.--Parthenia and Ingomar alone in the woods. "Two souls with but
a single thought, etc." She tells him that is love. He "can't see it."

Scene 4.--The thing works around about as we expected it would in the
first place. Ingomar gets stuck after Parthenia.

Scene 5.--Ingomar declares his love--he attempts to embrace her--she
waves him off, gently, but firmly--she remarks, "Not too brash, Ing.,
not too brash, now!" Ingomar subsides. They finally flee away, and hie
them to Parthenia's home.

ACTS III and IV.--Joy! Joy! From the summit of a hill, Parthenia beholds
once more the spires and domes of Silver City.

Scene 2.--Silver City. Enter Myron. Tableau! Myron begs for an extension
on his note--he has not yet raised the whole ransom, but he is ready to
pay two dollars and a half on account.

Scene 3.--Myron tells Ingomar he must shuck himself, and dress like a
Christian; he must shave; he must work; he must give up his sword! His
rebellious spirit rises. Behold Parthenia tames it with the mightier
spirit of Love. Ingomar weakens--he lets down--he is utterly

Scene 4.--Enter old Timarch, Chief of Police. He offers Ingomar--but
this scene is too noble to be trifled with in burlesque.

Scene 5.--Polydor presents his bill--213 drachmas. Busted again--the old
man cannot pay. Ingomar compromises by becoming the slave of Polydor.

Scene 6.--The Comanches again, with Thorne at their head! He asks who
enslaved the chief? Ingomar points to Polydor. Lo! Thorne seizes the
trembling broker, and snatches him bald-headed!

Scene 7.--Enter the Chief of Police again. He makes a treaty with the
Comanches. He gives them a ranch apiece. He decrees that they shall
build a town on the American Flat, and appoints great Ingomar to be its
Mayor! [Applause by the supes.]

Scene 8.--Grand tableau--Comanches, police, Pi-Utes, and citizens
generally--Ingomar and Parthenia hanging together in the centre. The old
thing--The old poetical quotation, we mean--They double on it--Ingomar
observing "Two souls with but a single Thought," and she slinging in the
other line, "Two Hearts that Beat as one." Thus united at last in a fond
embrace, they sweetly smiled upon the orchestra and the curtain fell.

[reprinted in the Golden Era, NOV. 29, 1863]

Territorial Enterprise, c. November 27, 1863

[Mark Twain on Artemus Ward, "The Wild Humorist of the Plains"]

We understand that Artemus Ward contemplates visiting this region to
deliver his lectures, and perhaps make some additions to his big "sho."
In his last letter to us he appeared particularly anxious to "sekure a
kupple ov horned todes; alsowe, a lizard which it may be persessed of 2
tales, or any comical snaix, and enny sich little unconsidered trifles,
as the poets say, which they do not interest the kommun mind. Further,
be it nown, that I would like a opportunity for to maik a moddel in
wax of a average size wash-owe man, with feet attached, as an kompanion
pictur to a waxen figger of a nigger I have sekured, at an large
outlaye, whitch it has a unnatural big hed onto it. Could you also
manage to gobbel up the skulp of the layte Missus Hopkins? I adore sich
foot-prints of atrocity as it were, muchly. I was roominatin' on gittin'
a bust of Mark Twain, but I've kwit kontemplatin' the work. They tell
me down heer to the Bay that the busts air so kommun it wood only bee
an waist of wax too git us kounterfit presentiment." We shall assist Mr.
Ward in every possible way about making his Washoe collection and have
no doubt but he will pick up many curious things during his sojourn.

Territorial Enterprise, December 1-3, 1863

[excerpt from original article concerning an affair in Virginia City]


Afterwards, Mr. Mark Twain being enthusiastically called upon, arose,
and without previous preparation, burst forth in a tide of eloquence so
grand, so luminous, so beautiful and so resplendent with the gorgeous
fires of genius, that the audience were spell-bound by the magic of his
words, and gazed in silent wonder in each other's faces as men who felt
that they were listening to one gifted with inspiration [Applause.] The
proceedings did not end here, but at this point we deemed it best to
stop reporting and go to dissipating, as the dread solitude of our
position as a sober, rational Christian, in the midst of the driveling
and besotted multitude around us, had begun to shroud our spirits with a
solemn sadness tinged with fear. At ten o'clock the curtain fell.

Territorial Enterprise, December 1863


Carson City, December 5, 1863

EDITOR'S ENTERPRISE: The church in Carson prospereth. A fine edifice
will soon be completed here, wherein the gospel may be comfortably
preached, and listened to in comfort likewise. A complimentary benefit
to this enterprise was given at the theatre last night by Hon. James
Stark and Mrs. Cutler, the profits of which amounted to upwards of
two hundred dollars. Mrs. Cutler recited several poems, and sang a
few choice songs with such grace and excellence as won for her the
compliment of repeated and enthusiastic encores. Mr. Stark's readings
were well selected and admirably delivered. His recital of the speech
of Sergeant Buzfuz, in the great breach of promise case of Bardell vs.
Pickwick, was a very miracle of declamation. If all men could read it
like him, that speech would live after Cicero's very creditable efforts
had been forgotten; yet heretofore I had looked upon that as the tamest
of Mr. Dickens' performances.

And just here, I am constrained, in behalf of the community, to do
justice to Charley Parker's liberality and good citizenship. He prepared
his theatre for this church benefit, put a stove in the green room, and
had the house duly cleaned and lighted--all at his own expense. It was a
good action, and gracefully and unostentatiously performed.

The Convention will probably complete its labors about Wednesday. The
members are growing restive and impatient under this long exile from
their private business, and are anxious to finish their work and get
back home. Three of the Esmeralda delegation--Messrs. Stark, Conner and
Bechtel, being imperatively called away by the necessity of attending
to their private affairs, have been granted indefinite leave of absence.
These gentlemen have been constantly at their posts, and unremitting in
the discharge of their duties, and well deserved this kindness at the
hands of the Convention. And between you and me, if there were no ladies
in Carson, my estimable old fossil, Colonel Youngs, would ask permission
to go home, also. Now, why will a man, when he gets to be a thousand
years old, go on hanging around the women, and taking chances on fire
and brimstone, instead of joining the church and endeavoring, with
humble spirit and contrite heart, to ring in at the eleventh hour, like
the thief on the cross? Why will he?


Mr. STERNS rose to a question of privilege again, to-day, and requested
that the reporters would publish his speeches verbatim or not at all.
The fact is, they ought to be reported verbatim, but then we work
eighteen hours a day, and still have not time to give more than the
merest skeletons of the speeches made in the Convention. Johnson and
Stewart, and Larrowe, and Bryan, and others, complain not, however,
although we condense their remarks fearfully. Even Judge Brosnan's
stately eloquence, adorned with beautiful imagery and embellished with
classic quotations, hath been reported by us thus tersely: "Mr. Brosnan
opposed the motion." Only that, and nothing more. But we had taste
enough not to mar a noble speech with the deadly engines of reduction
and the third person.

Now, in condensing the following speech, the other day, we were
necessarily obliged to leave out some of its most salient points, and I
acknowledge that my friend Sterns had ample cause for being annoyed at
its mutilation. I hope he will find the present report all right, though
(albeit the chances are infernally against that result)I have got his
style verbatim, whether I have the substance or not.


The question being on the amendment offered in Committee of the Whole,
to Mr. Stewart's proposed substitute for Section 1 of the Article
entitled "Taxation," as reported from the Standing Committee:

Mr. STERNS said--Mr. President, I am opposed, I am hostile, I am
uncompromisingly against this proposition to tax the mines. I will go
further, sir. I will openly assert, sir, that I am not in favor of this
proposition. It is wrong entirely wrong, sir (as the gentleman from
Washoe has already said); I fully agree (with the gentleman who has
just taken his seat) that it is unjust and unrighteous. I do think, Mr.
President, that (as has been suggested by the gentleman from Ormsby)
we owe it to our constituents to defeat this pernicious measure.
Incorporate it into your Constitution, sir, and (as was eloquently and
beautifully set forth in the speech of the gentleman from Storey) the
gaunt forms of want, and poverty, and starvation, and despair will
shortly walk in the high places of this once happy and beautiful land.
Add it to your fundamental law, sir, and (as was stated yesterday by the
gentleman from Lander) God will cease to smile upon your labors. In the
language (of my colleague), I entreat you, sir, and gentlemen, inflict
not this mighty iniquity upon generations yet unborn! Heed the prayers
of the people and be merciful! Ah, sir, the quality of mercy is not
strained, so to speak (as has been aptly suggested heretofore), but
droppeth like the gentle dew from Heaven, as it were. The gentleman from
Douglas has said this law would be unconstitutional, and I cordially
agree with him. Therefore, let its course to the ramparts be
hurried--let the flames that shook the battle's wreck, shine round it
o'er the dead--let it go hence to that undiscovered country from whose
bourne no traveler returns (as hath been remarked by the gentleman from
Washoe, Mr. Shamp), and in thus guarding and protecting the poor miner,
let us endeavor to do unto others as we would that others should do
unto us (as was very justly and properly observed by Jesus Christ upon a
former occasion).

After which, the Convention not knowing of any good reason why they
should not tax the miners, they went to work and taxed them.

Now, that is verbatim, as nearly as I could come at it. I took it from
my own mysterious short-hand notes, which are mighty shaky, I am willing
to admit; but then, I guarded against inaccuracy by consulting the
several authorities quoted in the speech, and from them I have the
assurance that my report of Mr. Sterns' comprehensive declamation is
eminently correct. I cannot bet on it, though, nevertheless--I cannot
possibly bet on it.

I think I have hit upon the right plan, now. It is better to report
a member verbatim, occasionally, and keep him pacified, than have him
rising to these uncomfortable questions of privilege every now and then.
I hope to be able to report Bill Stewart verbatim in the course of a day
or two, if he will hold on a spell.


Territorial Enterprise, December 1863


Carson City, December 12, 1863


Such is my destination. Thither I go to recuperate. I take with me a
broken spirit, blighted hopes and a busted constitution. Also some gin.
I shall return again, after many days, restored to vigorous health;
restored to original purity; free from sin, and prepared to accept any
lucrative office the people can be induced to force upon me. If elected,
I shall donate my salary to charitable institutions. I will finish
building this chronic brick church here, and lease a high-priced parson
to run it. Also, an exorbitant choir. Everything connected with the
church shall be conducted in the bulliest manner. The Logan Hotel is
situated on the banks of Lake Bigler--or Lake Tahoe, which signifieth
"grasshopper" in the Digger tongue. I am not going with any of the
numerous pleasure parties which go daily to the lake and infest the
Logan Hotel. I shall travel like Baxter's hog--in a gang by myself. I am
weary of the gay world, and I pine for an hour of solitude. The hotel is
new, handsomely furnished, and commodious; it stands within fifty feet
of the water's edge, and commands a view of all the grand scenery there
about; its table is furnished with the best the market affords, and
behold they eat trout there every day; fifteen miles over the new King's
Canyon road is all the journey it is necessary to take--after which the
worn pilgrim may rest in peace in the bosom of Logan & Stewart. That is
as good a thing as I want, as long as I am not married.


A year from now, there will not be a mine left in this Territory. This
is an appalling statement, but it is a true one. I guessed it from
remarks made by that disreputable old cottonhead, Bill Stewart, who as
good as promised me ten feet in the "Justis," and then backed down again
when the stock went up to $80 a foot. That was a villainous way to treat
me, who have gone on juries for him, and held my grip through all the
monstrous fabrications he chose to present in his eloquent sophistry,
and then brought in a verdict for him, when it seemed morally certain
that Providence would interfere and stop the nefarious business. I said,
the last time, that I would never serve on one of Bill Stewart's juries
again, until they put a lightning rod on the Court House. I said it, and
my word is good. I am not going to take any more chances like that.
But what I commenced to tell about was, that last night, after the
Convention adjourned, and the political meeting was called together,
Bill Stewart went to work with his characteristic indecent haste (just
a parallel case with that Justis affair), to construe the
Constitution!--construe and determine the species of the new-laid egg
from which is to be hatched our future power and greatness, while
the tender thing was warm yet! Bill Stewart is always construing
something--eternally distorting facts and principles. He would climb
out of his coffin and construe the burial service. He is a long-legged,
bull-headed, whopper-jawed, constructionary monomaniac. Give him a
chance to construe the sacred law, and there wouldn't be a damned soul
in perdition in a month. I have my own opinion of Bill Stewart, and
if it would not appear as if I were a little put out about that Justis
(that was an almighty mean thing), I would as soon express it as not.
He construed the Constitution, last night, as I remarked before. He gave
the public to understand that the clause providing for the taxation of
the mines meant nothing in particular; that he wanted the privilege of
construing that section to suit himself; that a mere hole in the ground
was not a mine, and it wasn't property (he slung that in because he
has a costly well on his premises in Virginia); and that it would be a
difficult matter to determine in our courts what does really constitute
a mine. Do you see his drift? Well, I do. He will prove to the
satisfaction of the courts that there are only two definite kinds of
mine; that one of these is an excavation from which metallic ores or
other mineral substances are "DUG" (which is the dictionary phrase).
Then of course, the miners will know enough to stop "digging" and go
to blasting. Bill Stewart will then show, easily enough, that these
fellows' claims are not "mines" according to the dictionary, and
consequently they cannot be taxed. He will show that the only other
species of "mine" is a "pronominal adjective," and proceed to prove that
there is nothing in the Constitution that will permit the State to tax
English grammar. He will demonstrate that a mere hole in the ground is
not a mine, and is not liable to taxation. The end will be that a year
from now we shall all own in these holes in the ground, but no man will
acknowledge that he owns in a "mine"; and about that time custom, and
policy, and construction, combined, will have taught us to speak of the
staunch old bulwark of the State as "The Great Gould & Curry Hole-in-the
Ground." Bill Stewart will put them up to it. In one short year, sir,
from this date, I feel within me that Bill Stewart will have succeeded
in construing the last vestige of a mine out of this country.


This subject worried the Convention some. In the first place, the
Standing Committee reported an article providing for the election of
a State Printer, whose compensation was to be fixed by law, etc. The
members, without even showing the Committee the courtesy of discussing
the matter, snubbed them very pointedly, by pitching the bill overboard
without offering the semblance of an apology for their conduct. They
substituted an article providing for printing State work by contract.
That was debated to death, and duly buried with its still-born
predecessor. Then they tried a Superintendent of Public Printing. That
plan appeared to suit them. They adopted it, and looked upon the work of
their hands and pronounced it good. There the matter rested until last
night, when Governor Johnson got up and asked unanimous consent to
substitute the original State Printer article for the Superintendent. He
pointed out to the Convention that the office of Superintendent would be
turned into a mere sinecure, and its incumbent would accomplish no good
to the State and behold, without a word of objection, the change was
made! Verily, it is vastly better to yield to wisdom at last, than not
at all.


Speaking of State Printer, reminds me that we made a mistake in the
report published this morning. We said the school moneys were to be
invested only in United States bonds--whereas, the truth is, it was
decided that they might be invested in either United States or State


A superb gold watch, worth five or six hundred dollars, was presented to
Hank Monk, here, night before last. The donors were John S. Henning, Joe
Clark, H. H. Raymond, Alex. O'Neil, William Thompson, Jr., John 0. Earl,
W. M. Lent and three others. The ceremonies were conducted at Frank
Ludlow's daguerrean rooms. Judge Turner made the presentation speech,
and Judge Hardy replied on behalf of the defendant. Champagne flowed
freely. The watch is gorgeously embellished with coaches and horses, and
with charms and seals in keeping with the same, and bears for a motto
Hank's famous remark to Horace Greeley: "KEEP YOUR SEAT, HORACE--I'LL


Lovejoy has issued the first number of his paper at Washoe City, and the
above is its name. It is as pretty as a sweetheart, and as readable as
a love-letter--and in my experience, these similes express a good deal.
But why should Lovejoy spell it Pah-Utah? That isn't right--it should be
Pi-Uty, or Pi-Ute. I speak by authority. Because I have carefully noted
the little speeches of self-gratulation of our noble red brother, and
he always delivers himself in this wise: "Pi-Uty boy heepy work--Washoe
heep lazy." But if you question his nationality, he remarks, with
oppressive dignity: "Me no dam Washoe--me Pi-Ute!" Wherefore, my
researches have satisfied me that one of these, or both, is right.
Lovejoy ought to know this, even better than me; he came here before
May, 1860, and is, consequently, a blooded Pi-Ute, while I am only an
ignorant half-breed.


Call your Constitutioners home. They do nothing but sing the praises of
Carson City, and Carson society, and Carson climate. Hite, and Brosnan,
and Youngs, and Sterns, and half the balance of them, are more than half
inclined to stay here. It is absurd. Pipe to quarters!


The Third House of the Constitutional Convention met in solemn grandeur,
at 1l o'clock last night. To-morrow or next day I shall compile a
verbatim report of its proceedings for the forthcoming volume of
official reports of the Convention, and if you think you can afford
to pay enough for it I will allow you to publish it in advance of that


President Constitutional Convention (Third House)

Territorial Enterprise, December 1863

[The "Third House" was an informal group of pranksters who often met and
burlesqued the legislative process.]

Nevada State Constitutional Convention; Third House

Carson City, December 13, 1863


The Third House met in the Hall of the Convention at 11 P. M., Friday,
immediately after the final adjournment of the First House.

On motion of Mr. Nightingill, the rules were suspended and the usual
prayer dispensed with, on the ground that it was never listened to by
the members of the First House, which was composed chiefly of the
same gentlemen which constitute the Third, and was consequently merely
ornamental and entirely unnecessary.

Mr. Mark Twain was elected President of the Convention, and Messrs.
Small and Hickok appointed to conduct him to the Chair, which they did
amid a dense and respectful silence on the part of the house, Mr. Small
stepping grandly over the desks, and Mr. Hickok walking under them.

The President addressed the house as follows, taking his remarks down in
short-hand as he proceeded.

Gentlemen--This is the proudest moment of my life. I shall always think
so. I think so still. I shall ponder over it with unspeakable emotion
down to the latest syllable of recorded time. It shall be my earnest
endeavor to give entire satisfaction in the high and bully position to
which you have elevated me. [Applause.]

The President appointed Mr. Small, Secretary, Mr. Gibson, official
reporter, and Mr. Pete Hopkins, Chief Page, and Uncle Billy Patterson,
First Assistant Page. These officers came forward and took the following

"We do solemnly affirm that we have never seen a duel, never been
connected with a duel, never heard of a duel, never sent or received a
challenge, never fought a duel, and don't want to. Furthermore, we will
support, protect and defend this constitution which we are about
to frame, until we can't rest, and will take our pay in scrip." Mr.
Youngs--"Mr. President: I, ah--I--that is--"

The President--"Mr. Youngs, if you have got anything to say, say it; and
don't stand there and shake your head and gasp 'I--ah, I--ah,' as you
have been in the habit of doing in the former Convention."

Mr. Youngs--"Well, sir, I was only going to say that I liked your
inaugural, and I perfectly agree with the sentiments you appeared to
express in it, but I didn't rightly understand what--"

The President--"You have been sitting there for thirty days, like a bump
on a log, and you never rightly understand anything. Take your seat,
sir, you are out of order. You rose for information? Well, you'll not
get it--sit down. You will appeal from the decision of the Chair? Take
your seat, sir, the Chair will entertain no appeals from its decisions.
And I would suggest to you, sir, that you will not be permitted, here,
to growl in your seat, and make malicious side remarks in an undertone,
for fifteen minutes after you have been called to order, as you have
habitually done in the other house."

The President--"The subject before the house is as follows. The
Secretary will read:"

Secretary--"A-r, ar,--t-i, ti--arti, c-l-e, cle,--article--"

The President--"What are you trying to do, sir?"

Secretary--"Well, I am only a helpless orphan, and I can't read

The Chair appointed Mr. Hickok to assist Mr. Small, and discharged Mr.
Gibson, the official reporter, because he did not know how to write.

Mr. Youngs--(singing)--"For the lady I love will soon be a bride, with
the diadem on her brow-ow-ow."

President--"Order, you snuffling old granny!"

Mr. Youngs--"I AM in order, sir."

The President--"You are not, sir--sit down."

Mr. Youngs--"I won't, sir! I appeal to--."

The President--"Take your--seat!"

Mr. Youngs--"But I insist that Jefferson's Manual--."

The President--"D--n Jefferson's Manual! The Chair will transact its own
business in its own way, sir."

Mr. Chapin--"Mr. President: I do hope the amendment will not pass. I do
beg of gentlemen--I do beseech of gentlemen--that they will examine
this matter carefully, and earnestly, and seriously, and with a sincere
desire to do the people all the good, and all the justice, and all the
benefit it is in their power to do. I do hope, Mr. President-."

The President--"Now, there YOU go! What are you trying to get through
your head?--there's nothing before the house."

The question being on Section 4, Article 1 (free exercise of religious

Mr. Stewart said--"Mr. President: I insist upon it, that if you tax the
mines, you impose a burden upon the people which will be heavier than
they can bear. And when you tax the poor miner's shafts, and drifts, and
bed-rock tunnels, you are NOT taxing his property; you are NOT taxing
his substance; you are NOT taxing his wealth--no, but you are taxing
what may become property some day, or may not; you are taxing the shadow
from which the substance may eventually issue or may not; you are taxing
the visions of Alnaschar; which may turn to minted gold, or only prove
the forerunners of poverty and misfortune; in a word, sir, you are
taxing his hopes; taxing the aspirations of his soul; taxing the
yearnings of his heart of hearts! Yes, sir, I insist upon it, that if
you tax the mines, you will impose a burden upon the people which will
be heavier than they can bear. And when you tax the poor miner's shafts,
and drifts, and bed-rock tunnels, you are NOT taxing his property; you
are NOT taxing his substance; you are NOT taxing his wealth--no, but you
are taxing what may become property some day, or may not; you are taxing
the shadow from which the substance may eventually issue or may not; you
are taxing the visions of Alnaschar, which may turn to minted gold, or
merely prove the fore runners of poverty and misfortune; in a word, sir,
you are taxing his hopes! taxing the aspirations of his soul!--taxing
the yearnings of his heart of hearts! Ah, sir, I do insist upon it that
if you tax the mines, you will impose a burden upon the people which
will be heavier than they can bear. And when you tax the poor miner's
shafts, and drifts, and bed-rock tunnels--"

The President--"Take your seat, Bill Stewart! I am not going to sit
here and listen to that same old song over and over again. I have been
reporting and re-reporting that infernal speech for the last thirty
days, and want you to understand that you can't play it off on this
Convention any more. When I want it, I will repeat it myself--I know it
by heart, anyhow. You and your bed-rock tunnels, and blighted miners'
blasted hopes, have gotten to be a sort of nightmare to me, and I won't
put up with it any longer. I don't wish to be too hard on your speech,
but if you can't add something fresh to it, or say it backwards, or sing
it to a new tune, you have simply got to simmer down for awhile."

Mr. Johnson--"Mr. President: I wish it distinctly understood that I
am not a candidate for the Senate, or any other office, and have no
intention of becoming one. And I wish to call the attention of the
Convention to the fact, sir, that outside influences have been brought
to bear, here, that--"

The President--"Governor Johnson, there is no necessity of your putting
in your shovel here, until you are called upon to make a statement. And
if you allude to the engrossing clerk as an outside influence, I must
inform you, sir, that his battery has been silenced with Territorial
scrip at forty cents on the dollar."

Mr. Sterns--"Mr. President, I cordially agree with the gentleman from
Storey county, that if we tax the mines we shall impose a burden upon
the people that will be heavier than they can bear. I agree with him,
sir, that in taxing the poor miner's shafts, and drifts, and bed-rock
tunnels, we would not be taxing his property, or his wealth, or his
substance, but only that which may become such at some future day--an
Alnascharean vision, which might turn to coin or might only result in
disaster and disappointment to the defendant--in a word, sir, I coincide
with him in the opinion that it would be equivalent to taxing the hopes
of the poor miner--his aspirations--the dear yearnings of his--"

The President--"Yearnings of his grandmother! I'll slam this mallet at
the next man that attempts to impose that tiresome old speech on this
body. SET DOWN! You have been pretty regular about re-hashing other
people's platitudes heretofore, Mr. Sterns, but you have got to be
a little original in the Third House. Your sacrilegious lips will be
marring the speeches of the Chair, next."

Mr. Ralston--"Mr. President: I have but a word to say, and I do not
wish to occupy the attention of the house any longer than I can help;
although I could, perhaps, throw more light upon the matter of our
eastern boundary than those who have not visited that interesting but
comparatively unknown section of our budding commonwealth. It is growing
late, and I do not feel as if I had a right to tax the patience--"

The President--"Tax! Take your seat, sir, take your seat. I will NOT be
bullyragged to death with this threadbare subject of taxation. You
are out of order, anyhow. How do you suppose anybody can listen in any
comfort to your speech, when you are fumbling with your coat all the
time you are talking, and trying to button it with your left hand, when
you know you can't do it? I have never seen you succeed yet, until just
as you got the last word out. And then the moment you sit down, you
always unbutton it again. You may speak, hereafter, Mr. Ralston, but I
want you to understand that you have got to button your coat before
you get up. I do not mean to be kept in hot water all the time by your
little oratorical eccentricities ."

Mr. Larrowe--"Mr. President: There are nine mills in Lander county
already--let me see--there is Dobson's, five stamp; Thompson's, eight
stamp; Johnson's, three stamp--well, I cannot give the names of all of
them, but there are nine, sir--NINE splendid, steam-power quartz-mills,
disturbing with their ceaseless thunder the dead silence of centuries!
Nine noble quartz-mills, sir, cheering with the music of their batteries
the desponding hearts of pilgrims from every land!--nine miraculous
quartz-mills, sir, from whose steam-pipes and chimneys ascends a
grateful incense to the god of Labor and Progress!--nine sceptred and
anointed quartz-mills, sir, whose mission it is to establish the power,
and the greatness, and the glory of Nevada, and place her high along

The President--"Now will you just take your seat, and hold your clatter
until somebody asks you for your confounded Reese River quartz-mill
statistics? What has Reese River got to do with religious freedom?--and
what have quartz-mills got to do with it--and what have you to do with
it yourself? You are out of order, sir--plant yourself. And moreover,
when you get up here to make a speech, I don't want you to yell at me as
if you thought I were in San Francisco--I'm not hard of hearing. I don't
see why President North didn't tone you down long ago."

Mr. Larrowe--"I think I am in order, Mr. President. It was a rule in the
other Convention that no member could speak when there was no question
before the house; but after the question had been announced by
the Chair, members could then go on and speak on any subject they
pleased--or rather, that was the custom, sir--the ordinary custom."

The President--"Yes, sir, I know it has been the custom for thirty days
and thirty nights in the other Convention, but I will let gentlemen
know that they can't ring in three-stamp Reese River quartz mills on the
third house when I am considering the question of religious liberty--the
same being dear to every American heart. Plant yourself, sir--plant
yourself. I don't want any more yowling out of you, now.

Mr. Small--"The Secretary would beg leave to state, for the information
of the Con-----"

The President--"There, now, that's enough of that. You learned that from
Gillespie, I won't have any of that kind of nonsense here. When you
have got anything to say, talk it right out; and see that you use the
personal pronoun 'I,' also, and drop that presumptuous third person.
'The Secretary would beg leave to state!' The devil he would. Now
suppose you take a back seat, and wait until somebody asks you to state
something. Mr. Chapin, you will please stop catching flies while the
Chair is considering the subject of religious toleration.

Mr. Ball--"Mr. President: The Finance Committee, of which I have the
honor to be chairman, have arrived at the conclusion that it is a
hundred and thirty miles from here to Folsom; that it will take two
hundred and thirty miles of railroad iron to build a road that distance,
without counting the switches; this would figure up as follows: Bars, 14
feet 3 inches long; weight, 800 pounds; 1,000 bars to the mile, 800,000
pounds; 130,000 bars for the whole distance, weight, 104,000,000 pounds;
original cost of the iron, with insurance and transportation to Folsom
from St. Louis, via Salt Lake City, added, say three dollars and a half
a pound, would mount to a fraction over or under $312,722,239.42. Three
hundred and twelve million, seven hundred and twenty-two thousand, two
hundred and thirty-nine dollars and forty-two cents, sir. That is the
estimate of the Committee, sir, for prime cost of one class of material,
without counting labor and other expenses. In view of these facts, sir,
it is the opinion of the Committee that we had better not build
the road. I did not think it necessary to submit a written report,

The President--"Take your seat, Mr. Ball--take your seat, sir, your evil
eye never lights upon this Chair but the spirit moves you to confuse its
intellect with some of your villainous algebraical monstrosities. I will
not entertain them, sir; I don't know anything about them. You needn't
mind bringing in any written reports here--or verbal ones either, unless
you can confine yourself to a reasonable number of figures at a time, so
that I can understand what you are driving at. No, sir, the Third
House will not build the railroad. The other Convention's donation of
$3,000,000 in bonds, worth forty cents on the dollar, will buy enough
of one of those bars to make a breastpin, and that will have to satisfy
this common wealth for the present. I observe that Messrs. Wasson and
Gibson and Noteware and Kennedy have their feet on their desks. The
chief page will proceed to remove those relics of ancient conventional
barbarism from sight."

Mr. Musser--"Mr. President: To be, or not to be that is the question--

The President--"No, sir! The question is, shall we tolerate religious
indifference in this community; or the rights of conscience; or the
right of suffrage; or the freedom of the press; or free speech, or free
schools, or free niggers. The Chair trusts it knows what it is about,
without any instructions from the members."

Mr. Musser--"But, sir, it was only a quotation from--"

The President--"Well, I don't care, I want you to sit down. The
Chair don't consider that you know much about religion anyhow, and
consequently the subject will suffer no detriment from your letting
it alone. You and Judge Hardy can subside, and study over the preamble
until you are wanted."

Mr. Brosnan--"Mr. President, these proceedings have all been irregular,
extremely and customarily irregular. I will move, sir, that the question
be passed, for the present, and that we take up the next section."

Mr. Mitchell--"I object to that, Mr. President. I move that we go into
Committee of the Whole on it."

Mr. Wasson--"I move that it be referred back to the Standing Committee."

Mr. North--"I move that the rules be suspended and the whole article
placed upon its final passage."

The President--"Gentlemen, those of you who are in favor of adopting
the original proposition, together with the various motions now pending
before the house, will signify the same by saying aye."

No one voting in the negative, the chair decided the vote to be
unanimous in the affirmative.

The President--"Gentlemen, your proceedings have been exactly similar
to those of the convention which preceded you. You have considered a
subject which you knew nothing about; spoken on every subject but the
one before the house, and voted without knowing what you were voting for
or having any idea what would be the general result of your action. I
will adjourn the Convention for an hour, on account of my cold, to the
end that I may apply the remedy prescribed for it by Dr. Tjader--the
same being gin and molasses. The Chief Page is hereby instructed to
provide a spoonful of molasses and a gallon of gin, for the use of the



Third House met after recess, and transacted the following business:

Secretary read Section 15, Legislative Department:

"SECTION 15. The doors of each house shall be kept open during the

Kinkead moved to amend by adding the words "and the windows also, if the
weather will permit."

Secretary read Section 32, Legislative Department:

"SECTION 32. No law shall be passed authorizing married women to carry
on business as sole traders."

On motion of Stems, construed to mean that married women shall not

Secretary read Section 6, Declaration of Rights:

"SECTION 6. Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines

Youngs moved to amend by striking out the word "bair'l" and inserting
the word "board." Adopted, unanimously.

SECTION 1. Miscellaneous Provisions, was amended so as to read as

"SECTION 1. The seat of government shall be at Carson, and the
Legislature shall hold its session in the plaza during the first six

Section added empowering the President of the Third House of the
Convention to convene, by proclamation, the Third House of the State
Legislature, for the purpose of electing two United States Senators,
within thirty days after the Constitution shall have been ratified.

Name of the State changed to "Washoe," in conformity with the law which
called the Convention together.

New section added, as follows:

"SECTION--. No Sheriff or other officer shall be expected to arrest any
assassin or other criminal on strong presumptive evidence, merely, nor
any other evidence, unless such assassin or other criminal shall insist
upon his privilege of being arrested."

The hour having arrived for the President to take his regular gin and
molasses, the Convention adjourned.

Last night, about 12 o'clock--[here the telegraph ceased
working.-BLOOMER, operator.]

Territorial Enterprise, December 25--27, 1863


A CHRISTMAS GIFT.--"Mr. Twain--compliments of Miss Chase--Christmas,
1863." This handwriting disposed us to suspect treachery, and to regard
the box as a deadly infernal machine. It was on this account that we got
a stranger to open it. This precaution was unnecessary. The diabolical
box had nothing in it but a ghastly, naked, porcelain doll baby.
However, we are much obliged--we always had a hankering to have a baby,
and now we are satisfied--the mythical "Miss Chase" helped us to the
business, and she has our cordial thanks for her share in it.

Territorial Enterprise, late December 1863

[Mark Twain's review of Artemus Ward's lecture]

"There are perhaps fifty subjects treated in it, and there is a passable
point in every one of them, and a healthy laugh, also, for any of God's
creatures who hath committed no crime, the ghastly memory of which
debars him from smiling again while he lives. The man who is capable
of listening to the 'Babes in the Wood' from beginning to end without
laughing either inwardly or outwardly must have done murder, or at least
meditated it, at some time during his life."

Territorial Enterprise, December 29, 1863


CHRISTMAS PRESENTS.--We received from Carson, Saturday, a long yellow
box, of suspicious appearance, with the following inscription upon it:
"Mark Twain, ENTERPRISE Office, Virginia--Free--Politeness Langton's
Pioneer Express--Be-hi-me-soi-vin." That last phrase is Greek, and means
"Bully for you!" We are not sure that it was written by Mrs. H. F. R.,
of Carson, and there was no evidence accompanying the box to show that
it was. This is what makes us so obstinate in the opinion that it might
have been written by somebody else. The box contained a toy rabbit, of
the jackass persuasion, gifted with ears of aggravated dimensions, and
swathed in sage-brush; an Indian chief--a mere human creation--made of
raisins, strung on a skeleton formed of a single knitting-needle, with
a solitary fig for a body, and a chicken feather driven into the head
of the effigy, to denote its high official character. One more present
remained--the same being a toy watchman's rattle, made of pine and
tastefully painted. We are glad to have that rattle now, but when we
asked for such a thing at a certain convivial party in Carson, it will
be remembered that we meant to bestow it upon another young man who was
present, and whose absent mind, we imagined, might be collected together
and concentrated by means of such an instrument. We have presented the
rabbit to Artemus Ward, to be preserved as a specimen of our resources;
the other presents we shall always wear near our heart. The following
report of the committee, accompanying the box, has been received,
accepted, adopted, and the same referred to the Committee of the Whole

CARSON City, December 25, 1863.

Mr. MARK TWAIN--Sir: The undersigned has the honor to be selected by the
gay company of ladies and gentlemen and boys and girls and Santa Claus,
who came in person with Judge Dixson's wolf-skin cap, coat, pants and
a mask, and sleigh bells around his waist, and dashed in the room just
after Mrs. Cutter and two long rows of children had sung a pretty piece,
and read a letter from Santa Claus, when that individual immediately
dashed into the room to the terror of some of the children, thirty-six
in all, and climbed the Christmas tree, all covered with presents,
and little lighted candles, and handed down things for everybody, and
afterwards danced with the now reconciled children, and then dashed out;
after which there was supper and dancing by the ladies and gentlemen;
and the school which was thus made to enjoy them selves last night till
midnight, was Miss H. K. Clapp and Mrs. Cutter's Seminary, which is one
of the best there is, and instructed me to send you these things, which
I do by Langton's Express, handed down from the Christmas tree by Santa
Claus, marked "Mark Twain," to wit: One rabbit under a sage brush, to
represent your design for a seal in the Constitutional Convention; one
rattle, presented by a lady of whom you begged for one when you were
here last, and a Pi-Ute to be eaten, being a chief with a chicken
feather in his hat, composed of a fig for his body and otherwise
raisins, sent to you by request of a lady of the medical profession, all
of which is submitted by


Territorial Enterprise, December 30, 1863


AT 7 o'clock last night a large number of citizens met at the Court
House for the purpose of selecting sixteen new delegates, which they
hoped might prove more acceptable to the State Convention than those
elected by the regular County Convention day before yesterday. There
appeared to be some discord in this Convention as well as in that
which preceded it, but of course the manner in which it was constituted
prevented the possibility of anyone's bolting from it in the regular
and recognized way. It was a gorgeous sight to behold those two hundred
fearless spirits of Storey--those noble human soda-bottles, so to speak,
effervescing with the holy gas of pure unselfish patriotism, rising in
their might to bust out, as it were, the infamous action of 3,000 voters
of Storey county, as done in the County Convention by their chosen
representatives. But we are fearfully and wonderfully made, and we
glorious Americans will occasionally astonish the God that created us
when we get a fair start.

The proceedings opened with three cheers and a tiger for the stars and

Mr. Corson moved that Dr. Minneer be elected chairman of the meetings.

Mr. Barclay nominated Wm. H. Davenport and James Phelan as Secretaries.
They were elected without opposition.

The following Vice Presidents were then elected: James Brannon, Dighton
Corson, Judge Leconey, J. W. Noyes, Thos. Lynch, Judge Ferris, John
A. Collins, A. B. Elliott, E. Bond, W. H. Young, J. S. Black, Thos. G.
Taylor, S. A. Kellogg, Judge Frizell, J. H. Heilshorn, P. Quigley, J.
T. Sage, John Church, W. R. Warnock and R. H. Rider. [Several of these
gentlemen were said to be present.]

The Chairman reviewed the action of the County Convention, and said it
was not satisfactory to the majority of the community; therefore the
people had met now to improve upon that action in their sovereign
capacity as fountain-head of power in the land. He said the present
Convention would nominate sixteen delegates, and hoped they would be
accepted by the State Convention in preference to the delegates elected
by the late packed Convention.

[A voice--"Three cheers!" No response.]

A committee previously and mysteriously appointed immediately brought
in a report containing the following names. There was no suspicion of
packing about it, however. The report reads as follows:

Report of the committee appointed by a meeting of citizens held at the
Court House on Monday evening, December 29th, to select the names of
sixteen citizens to be presented to the mass meeting this evening
as suitable persons to represent Storey county in the Union State
Convention, to be held at Carson on the 31st inst., beg leave to submit
the following names: Dr. Geiger, John Dohle, Thomas Lynch, Captain
White, Joseph Loryea, J. L. Black, George E. Brickett, Thomas Hannah, J.
D. Meagher, Augustus Ash.

Mr. Corson moved that the report be accepted, and the committee
discharged. Carried.

Mr. Fitch was called for and addressed the Convention at great length,
re-hashing, adding to and improving his most recent editorials in the
Virginia Union. He was heard with interest and was frequently applauded.

As is always his custom, Mr. Brosnan spoke eloquently and feelingly,
and was repeatedly and loudly cheered. Public speakers are not given
to adhering strictly to the truth as a general thing, but we know Judge
Brosnan is. However, he stood up there last night and misrepresented old
Nestor--a poor devil who has been dead hundreds and hundreds of years.
And Judge Brosnan knew perfectly well that he was departing from the
record when he unblushingly abused old Nestor's wardrobe and said he
wore a poisoned shirt. Now why couldn't he confine himself to living
convention-packers and let dead foreigners alone? That's it--we are down
on that kind of thing, you know.

[Cries, "Hannah! Hannah!" "Gentlemen, wait a moment!" "I call for the
adoption of the report before we have any speaking!"]

However, Mr. Hannah came forward and said that "As had been remarked
by both gentlemen who have preceded me," and then went on and made both
gentlemen's speeches over again, in such a pleasant way, and with such
vehemence of manner that "the people"--that mighty lever being present,
and filling very nearly three-fourths of the house--"the people"
applauded each familiar argument as it fell upon their ears, and felt
really comfortable over it. He touched us very agreeably by speaking
of us as "those intelligent reporters who officiated at the late
Constitutional Convention." [The word "intelligent" is our own. We had
an idea it would make the sentence read better.] Toward the last, Mr.
Hannah soared into originality, and touched upon a multitude of subjects
on his own hook. Notwithstanding its apparent originality, however, we
shall always be haunted by the dreadful suspicion that the fag-end of
Tom Hannah's speech was gobbled out of the Babes in the Wood.

Mr. Brosnan moved that a committee of five be appointed to draft

Mr. Pepper suggested that there was already a question before the house.
[A voice "Sit down."]

The Chairman remarked that there was a question before the house, and
proceeded to state it as being on the adoption of the report of the
Committee on Nominations.

The house refused to entertain the report in its entirety, and demanded,
in great confusion, that the candidates should be voted for separately,
which was done, and the following gentlemen elected:

Messrs. Geiger, Dohle, Lynch, White, Black, Hannah, Warnock, Ash,
Phillips, G. H. [sic], J. Y. Paul, Doak (?), Frizell, Burke, Knox,

Messrs. Loryea and Meagher were voted for and rejected, and confusion
grew worse confounded in the meantime.

Mr. Warnock moved the appointment of a Nominating Committee of ten, to
present names to the next mass meeting, as candidates for Legislators,
Judges, etc. Carried.

The Committee on Resolutions was appointed as follows: Messrs. Brosnan,
Frizell, Hannah, Corson, Bond.

The committee created by Mr. Warnock's resolution was then nominated
and elected, as follows: Messrs. Warnock, Jas. Campbell, Hannah, Jacob
Young, Manning, Lackey, Dimock, Carey, Van Vliet and Flood.

Mr. Corson moved to add five to the committee, and take them from Gold
Hill and Flowery. Carried.

The following gentlemen were nominated and elected: Messrs. Phillips, La
Flower and Bishop.

[Here great trouble arose about a suggestion that the Convention might
possibly be electing people who were opposed to them. It was a wise and
bully idea. Mr. James Campbell called at our office after the Convention
adjourned, and requested us to remove his name from the nominating

After which, with remarkable unanimity, the Convention struck off the
names of the Gold Hill members from the nominating committee, and left
it to the President to fill up with other Gold Hill men.

Mr. Frizell submitted the following names, which he said had been
selected by a mass meeting in Gold Hill: Wm. C. Derall, E. R. Burke, Ed.
C. Morse, Sam Doak, and J. W. Phillips.

They were unanimously elected.

Chas. H. Knox of Flowery was added to the committee.

The Committee on Resolutions then reported as follows:

Resolved, That as subjects of a Government, yet free, we rejoice at
the inestimable right and privilege to publicly assemble and approve
or condemn, when the general good requires it, the manner in which our
representatives may have discharged the duties as signed them by the
suffrages of the people.

2. As the sense of this large assemblage of citizens which may justly
be denominated a spontaneous uprising of an outraged and insulted
constituency, that the action of the County Nominating Convention,
held in Virginia on the 28th day of December, instant, has been unjust,
unfair, arbitrary, and without precedent in the history of conventional

3. That the resolutions adopted, and the other proceedings had by the
said Convention, fail to express the true sentiments of the people
of this county, and only proclaim the sentiments of a few interested
individuals. Regarding them as such, we unanimously repudiate them, and
declare that those resolutions and proceedings ought not to have, and
have not, any binding force upon the political action of the free,
independent and Union-loving electors of Storey county.

4. That copies of the proceedings of this meeting be transmitted to the
members of the ensuing State Nominating Convention, from other counties,
accompanied with a respectful request that they will do justice to the
great majority of the people of Storey county, and rebuke the odious and
unjust system of "packing" conventions by admitting the nominees of
this meeting to seats in the Convention, as the true delegates and
representatives of the people of Storey.

The resolutions were unanimously adopted.

A County Central Committee was elected, as follows: J. L. Black, Chas.
Knox, Jas. Phelan, E. R. Burke, Samuel Doak, T. R. P. Dimock, Thos.
Barclay, Dighton Corson, W. D. [sic] Warnock, Jacob Young.

Motion that the delegates elected be instructed to go to Carson
to-morrow (Wednesday ) and that no proxies be allowed except in extreme
cases, and that such extreme cases be attended to by the delegates,
themselves. Carried.

A motion that the Central Committee meet in the District Court room
to-morrow (Wednesday) evening, prevailed.

Also, a motion that the Convention adjourn until next Monday evening--to
meet then at the District Court room.

The meeting broke up with cheers for the Convention, the Union, the old
flag, and groans for Stewart and Baldwin.

It was a dusty, a very dusty, Convention, and as has been previously
remarked in America, we are a great people.


EDS. ENTERPRISE.--The gentleman who reported the proceedings of the
Union mass meeting last evening for the ENTERPRISE, unintentionally
misquotes. He says Mr. Brosnan slandered the defunct "Nestor." Not
so--Mr. B____ made no allusion to that hair brained, crazy old fool,
"Nestor," nor to his "wardrobe." But Mr. B____ did mention that other
jealous and wicked "cuss," Nessus, and his historical, villainous

Now, if that facetious sinner, blunderer and sage-brush painter, "Mark
Twain," had thus libelled me, I could forgive him; but to be thus
misrepresented (though undesignedly) by the "intelligent" reporter of
the ENTERPRISE is, as Mrs. Partington would say, assolutely inseparable.

Virginia, Dec. 30th


Territorial Enterprise, December 30, 1863


Dr. May, of the International Hotel, has put into our hands the
following documents, which will afford an idea of how infinitely mean
some people can become when they get a chance. This firm of Read & Co.,
Bankers, 42 South Third street, Philadelphia, will do to travel--but
not in Washoe, if we understand the peculiar notions of this people.
The accompanying letter, circular, and certificate of stock were sent by
Read & Co. to Dr. May's nephew, Theodore E. Clapp, Esq., Postmaster at
White Pigeon, Michigan. Through the Doctor, Mr. Clapp had learned a good
deal about Washoe, and saw at a glance, of course, that a swindle was on
foot which would not only cheat multitudes of the poorest classes of
men in the States, but would go far toward destroying confidence in
our mines and our citizens if permitted to succeed. He lost no time,
therefore, in forwarding the villainous papers to Dr. May, and we are
sure the people of the Territory are right heartily thankful to him for
doing so.

The certificate of stock is a curiosity in the way of unblushing
rascality. It does not state how many shares there are in the
company, or what a share is represented by. It is a comprehensive
arrangement--the company propose to mine all over "Nevada Territory,
adjoining California"! They are not partial to any particular mining
district. They are going to "carry on" a general "gold and silver mining
business"!--the untechnical, leather-headed thieves! The company is "TO
BE" organized--at some indefinite period in the future probably in
time for the resurrection. The company is "to be" incorporated "for the
purpose of purchasing machinery"--they only organize a company in order
to purchase machinery--the inference is, that they calculate to steal
the mine. And only to think--a man has only got to peddle forty or fifty
of these certificates of stock for Messrs. Read & Co. in order to become
fearfully and wonderfully wealthy!--or, as they eloquently put it,
"By taking hold now, and assisting to raise the capital stock of this
company, you have it within your grasp to place yourself [in] a way
to receive a large income annually without spending one cent!" Oh, who
wouldn't take hold now? Breathes there a man with soul so lead that he
wouldn't take hold under such seductive circumstances? Scasely. Read &
Co. want to get money--rather than miss, they will even grab at a paltry
two-and-a-half piece thus: "You can send in $2.50 at a time." Two and a
half at a time, to buy shares in another Gould & Curry!

But the coolest, the soothingest, the most refreshingest paragraph
(to speak strongly) is that one which is stuck in at the bottom of
the circular, with an air about it which mutely says, "it's of no
consequence, and scarcely worth mentioning, but then it will do to fill
out the page with." The paragraph reads as follows: "N.B.--Subscribers
can receive their dividends, as they fall due, at Messrs. Read & Co's
Banking House, No. 42 South Third street, Philadelphia, or have them
forwarded by express, of which all will be regularly notified!" We
imagine we can see a denizen of some obscure western town walking with
stately mien to the express office to get his regular monthly dividend;
we imagine less fortunate people making way for him, and whispering
together, "There goes old Thompson--owns ten shares in the People's Gold
and Silver Mining Company--Lord! but he's rich!--he's going after his
dividends now." And we imagine we see old Thompson and his regular
dividends fail to connect. And finally, we imagine we see the envied
Thompson jeered at by his same old neighbors as "the old fool who got
taken in by the most palpable humbug of the century."

Who is "Wm. Heffly, Esq., of San Francisco," who knows it all, and who
has calmly waited for three years without once swerving from his purpose
of "starting a mining company" as soon as he could become satisfied that
quartz-mining was a permanent thing? Cautious scoundrel! You couldn't
fool him into going into a highway robbery like the "People's Gold and
Silver Mining Company," until he was certain he could make the thing
look plausible. But if he wrote those circulars and things, he was never
a week in Washoe in his life, because we don't talk about "cap rock"
in this country--that's a Pike's Peak phrase; and when we talk about
"cab-rock," we never say it pays "$24 to the ton," or any other price;
we don't crush wall-rock, as a general thing. There is no "Washoe Mining
District" in this Territory, and the President of the People's Company
did a bully good thing when he "reserved the right to change the
location" of operations whenever he pleased. Mr. Heffly's knowledge
of the prices of leading stocks here borders on the marvelous. He says
Gould & Curry is worth "$5,000 per share." A "share" is three inches;
but Gould & Curry don't sell at $20,000 a foot; he puts Ophir at $2,400
"per share"; now a "share" of Ophir is one inch. All the other prices
mentioned by Mr. Heffly are wrong, and never were right at any time,
perhaps. In the items written by Mr. Heffly, and pretended to be clipped
from the Bulletin and the Standard, he uses mining technicalities never
uttered either by miners or newspaper men in this part of America.
The only true statement in these documents is the one which
reads--"Therefore, in subscribing to the capital stock of this company,
you are acting on a certainty, and taking no risk whatever." That is
eminently so. You are acting on a certainty of being swindled, and so
far from there being any risk about that result, it is the deadest "open
and shut" thing in the world.

Now this swindle ought to be well ventilated by the newspapers--not that
sound business men will ever be swindled by it, but the unsuspecting
multitude, who yearn to grow suddenly rich, will assuredly have their
slender purses drained by it.

Territorial Enterprise, January, 1864


January 10, 1864


EDITORS ENTERPRISE: Well, how are you and the News and the Bulletin
making out for the Constitution in Storey?

I suppose it will be voted down here. I said so to a Virginia man
yesterday. "Well," says he, "that reminds me of a circumstance. A good
old practical Dutchman once contributed liberally toward the building of
a church. By and by they wanted a lightning rod for it, and they came to
the Dutchman again. 'Not a dam cent,' says he, 'not a dam cent! I helps
to puild a house for te Lord, und if he joose to dunder on it and knock
it down, he must do it at his own risk!' Now in the Constitution, we
have placed the Capital here for several years; Carson has always fared
well at our hands in the legislature, and finally, we have tacitly
consented to say nothing more about the Mint being built in this
inconvenient locality. This is the house that has been built for
Carson--and now if she chooses to go and dunder on it and knock it down,
by the Lord she'll have to take the consequences! The fact is all our
bullion is silver, and we don't want the country flooded with silver
coin; therefore, we can save the Government a heavy expense, and do the
Territory a real kindness, by showing the authorities that we don't need
a mint, and don't want one. And as to that Capital, we'll move it up to
Storey, where it belongs."

So spake the Virginian. I listened as one having no taxable property
and never likely to have; as one being out of office and willing to
stay out; as one having no tangible right to take an interest in the
Constitution, and consequently not caring a straw whether it carried or
not. The man spoke words of wisdom, though. I am aware that the capital
could have been removed last session, and from the complexion of the
new Territorial Assembly, I suppose it can be done this year.
Notwithstanding these things though, and notwithstanding I am a free
white male citizen of Storey county, I conjecture that I have a right
to my private opinion that Carson is the proper place for the seat of
Government and it ought to remain here so long as I don't try to make
capital out of that opinion. Nobody has a right to arrest me for being
disorderly on such ground as that.


Dan, will you send my baggage down here, or have I got to go on
borrowing clothes from Pete Hopkins through all eternity?


Young Gillespie is down here in my employ. On a small salary. I have
got him figuring with the Legislators for extra compensation for the


The Territorial Legislature will meet here next Tuesday at noon. The
rooms used last year in the county buildings, have been let by the
County Commissioners for the use of the two Houses, at $500 for the
session of forty days, payable in greenbacks. The halls are now being
fitted up, and will be ready at the proper time.


All Carson went out to warm Theodore Winters' new house, in Washoe
Valley, on Friday evening, and had a pleasant time of it. The house and
its furniture together, cost $50,000.


The Warren boys brought out their superb machine for practice yesterday.
She threw a heavy stream entirely over the tall flag-staff in the Plaza.


Religious matters are booming along in Carson. Mrs. Wiley, who is an
unusually talented vocalist, has been requested to give a concert for
the benefit of my old regular chronic brick church, and will probably do
so shortly.


A jury has finally been empaneled in this murder case, or man slaughter
case, or justifiable homicide, or whatever it is, and the trial set for


Concerning the Marsh troupe, R. G. Marsh sends the following note to
Major Dallam, of the Independent: "--Please insert enclosed corrected
advertisement, and make such flourish and announcement as your local
feeling will admit of, consistent with a kleer konshuns. Yours till we
meat and drink."

The Company will appear at the Carson Theatre on Monday, Tuesday and
Wednesday evenings of the present week. Billy O'Neil comes along, too.


I received a letter from Artemus Ward, to-day, dated "Austin, January
1." It has been sloshing around between Virginia and Carson for awhile.
I hope there is no impropriety in publishing extracts from a private
letter--if there be, I ought not to copy the following paragraph of his:

"I arrived here yesterday morning at 2 o'clock. It is a wild, untamable
place, but full of lion-hearted boys. I speak tonight. See small bills.
*** I hope, some time, to see you and Kettle-belly Brown in New York. My
grandmother--my sweet grandmother--she, thank God, is too far advanced
in life to be affected by your hellish wiles. My aunt--she might fall.
But didn't Warren fall, at Bunker Hill? [The old woman's safe. And so
is the old girl, for that matter.-MARK.] DO not sir, do not, sir, do not
flatter yourself that you are the only chastely-humorous writer onto the
Pacific slopes. *** I shall always remember Virginia as a bright spot in
my existence, and all others must or rather cannot be, 'as it were.'"

I am glad that old basket-covered jug holds out. I don't know that it
does, but I have an impression that way. At least I can't make anything
out of that last sentence. But I wish him well, and a safe journey,
drunk or sober.


Territorial Enterprise, January 12-13, 1864



CARSON, 11 A.M., January 12, 1864.

The Constitution pot boils. Gentlemen from the different sections of
the Territory--visiting brethren of the Legislature agree in the opinion
that the Constitution will carry by a very respectable vote on the 19th.
This will have its effect upon Ormsby county, which, strangely enough,
considering the advantages she would derive from having the Capital
permanently located at Carson, a mint built here, and the number
of resident officials increased, has heretofore been opposed to the
establishment of a State Government.

And speaking of the mint, I have an item of news relating to that
subject. Mr. Lockhart, the Indian Agent, has just received a letter from
Commissioner Bennet, in which he says he has been informed by Secretary
Chase that no further steps will be taken toward building a mint in this
region until our State Representatives arrive in Washington! This is in
consequence of efforts now being made by Mr. Conness to have the mint
located at Virginia. The authorities want advice from representatives
direct from the people. As I said before, the people of Ormsby will
oppose the Constitution.

O, certainly they will! They will if they are sick--or sentimental--or
consumptive--or don't know their own interests--or can't see when God
Almighty smiles upon them, and don't care anyhow. Now if Ormsby votes
against the Constitution, let us clothe ourselves in sackcloth and put
ashes on our heads; for in that hour religious liberty will be at an
end here--her next step will be to vote against her eternal salvation.
However the anti-Constitutional sentiment here is growing weak in the

Most of the members have arrived, and the wheels of government will
begin to churn at 12 M.


Territorial Enterprise, January 1864


Carson City, January 13, 1864

Before the Legislature begins its labors, I will just mention that the
Marsh Troupe will perform in Virginia to-morrow night (Thursday)--at
the Opera House of course--for the benefit of Engine Company No. 2. They
played here last night--"Toodles," you know. Young George Marsh--whose
theatrical costumes are ungainly enough, but not funny--took the part of
Toodles, and performed it well--performed it as only cultivated talent,
or genius, or which you please, or both, could enable him to do it.
Little Jenny Arnot (she with the hideous--I mean affected--voice)
appeared as Mrs. Toodles. Jenny is pretty--very pretty; but by the usual
sign, common to all those of her sex similarly gifted, I perceive she
knows it. Therefore, let us not speak of it. Jenny is smart--but she
knows that too, and I grant you it is natural that she should. And
behold you, when she does forget herself and make use of her own natural
voice, and drop her borrowed one, it is the pleasantest thing in life
to see her play. The other ladies--however, I neglected to preserve
a theatre bill, and I do not know what characters they personified.
However, one was a handsome sailor boy, and the other was a lovely,
confiding girl with auburn hair--the same being stuck after each
other. Alexander was gotten up in considerable taste as a ratty old
gentleman--the father of one of the stuck--the auburn one, I think.
Beatty was one of those dear reformed pirates, who comes in at the
finale with a bandaged head and a broken heart, and leans up against
the side-scenes and slobbers over his past sins, and is so interesting.
Billy O'Neil was so successful in keeping the house in a roar as the
Limerick Boy, and especially as the Irish Schoolmaster, that he was
frequently driven from his own masterly gravity. After the performance
was over, he said, "Those girls on the front seats knew where the laugh
came in, didn't they?" I said they did. I further observed that if there
was any place where the laugh didn't come in, those girls on the front
seats didn't know it. Wherefore, if so, he had them there. My head was
level. I think I am not transcending the limits of truth, when I assert
that my head was eminently level. I would not flatter Billy O'Neil, yet
I cannot help thinking that as "Barney the Baron," night before last,
he was the drunkest white man that ever crossed the mountains. George
Boulden, assisted by Mr. Alexander, sang "When this Cruel War is Over,
as it Were," and was thrice encored.

A circumstance happened to an acquaintance of mine this week, which I
promised to say nothing about. A young man from one of the neighboring
counties, took a good deal of silk dress, with a moderate amount of girl
in it, home from the theatre, and on his way back to his constituents
he jammed his leg into a suburban post-hole, and remained anchored out
there in the dark until considerably after midnight. He wept, and he
prayed, and he cussed. He continued to cuss. He cussed himself, and the
Board of Alder men, and the County Commissioners. He even cussed his own
relations, and more particularly his grandmother, which was innocent. It
seemed a good deal mixed as to whether he was ever going to get loose or
not; but the coyotes got to skirmishing around him and grabbing at his
independent leg, and made him uncommon lively. Whereat, he put on his
strength, and tugged and cussed, and kicked at the coyotes, and cussed
again, and tugged, and finally, out he came--but he pulled the post-hole
up by the roots in doing of it. It was funny--exceedingly funny.
However, I don't mind it; I slept all the same, and just as well.

I have received that carpet-sack of mine at last. It contained two
shirts and six empty champagne bottles. Also one garrote collar, with a
note from Dan written on it in pencil, accounting for the bottles under
the plea that "voluminous baggage maketh a man to be respected." It was
an airy and graceful thought, and a credit to his great mind. The shirts
were marked respectively "R. M. Daggett" and "Sandy Baldwin," from which
I perceive that Dan has been foraging again.

We organized yesterday. "We" is the House of Representatives, you
understand. Simmons will make a good Speaker; and, besides, I shall be
nearby to volunteer a little of my Third House experience, occasionally.
The Council did not expend half an hour in getting very thoroughly and
permanently organized. The regular joint committees were appointed
to wait on the Governor, and that Body will be produced in Court this
morning to testify concerning the condition of the country. N.B.--The
several departments of the law-making power are called Bodies. The
Governor is one of them, by law--therefore it is disrespectful to speak
of him otherwise than as a Body--a jolly, unctuous, oleaginous old Body.
That's it. I do not consider that we are entirely organized yet, either.
You see, we are entitled to a Chaplain. The Organic Act vouchsafes unto
us the consolations of religion--payable in Greenbacks at three dollars
a day. We roped in the Rev. Mr. White, yesterday, and gouged him out of
a prayer, for which, of course, we never intend to pay him. We go in for
ministers looking to Providence in little matters of this kind. Well,
there is no harm in us, and we calculate to run this institution without
a Chaplain. In accordance with a motion of Mr. Nightingill, we dispensed
with the services of Chaplain in the Third House, and it is a matter
of no little pride to me to observe that this Aggregation of Wisdom
manifests a disposition, not only in this but in many other respects,
to send Jefferson's Manual and the Organic Act to the d--l and take
the published proceedings of that Body as its parliamentary gospel--its
guide to temporal glory and ultimate salvation. The House will proceed
to business now in a few minutes.


Territorial Enterprise, January 1864


Carson, January 14, 1864


Say--you have got a compositor up there who is too rotten particular, it
seems to me. When I spell "devil" in my usual frank and open manner, he
puts it "d--l"! Now, Lord love his conceited and accommodating soul,
if I choose to use the language of the vulgar, the low-flung and the
sinful, and such as will shock the ears of the highly civilized, I don't
want him to appoint himself an editorial critic and proceed to tone me
down and save me from the consequences of my conduct; that is, unless
I pay him for it, which I won't. I expect I could spell "devil' before
that fastidious cuss was born.--MARK TWAIN.

The Speaker called the House to order at 10 A.M.


Mr. Heaton introduced a concurrent resolution, that when the Legislative
Assembly adjourn to-morrow, it be to meet again on Wednesday, 21st, at
12 M.

A motion to suspend the rules was put to a vote and carried--ayes 15;
noes, Messrs. Clagett, Curley, Gillespie, Gove, Hess, Hunter, Jones and

Mr. Gillespie moved to amend by making the hour 1 P.M.

[More skirmishing about parliamentary usage but the Chair is not in

Mr. Fisher offered an amendment, to read "the House of Representatives
and Council concurring." [Mr. Fisher got his notion from--well--say
inspiration, for instance.--REPORTER.]

Mr. Clagett finally got up and straightened the blasted resolution.

The Speaker made a suggestion concerning the wording of the document.
[Half an hour more will get it all right, you know. The parliamentary
skirmishing still goes on, with unabated intelligence. This Aggregation
of Wisdom can frame a concurrent resolution, but we must have time
we must have a reasonable length of time to do it in. I could have
furnished all the amendments offered to this document, and all the
transmogrifications it has passed through--but then you don't want
a column of that kind of information. I don't consider it

The resolution as infinitely amended and improved, was voted upon at
last, and carried--ayes 18, noes 5--Messrs. Clagett, Gillespie, Gove,
Hunter and Phillips. [I asked the Clerk what the resolution proposed to
do now? And he said he'd be d--d if he knew.--REP.]

Mr. Clagett offered a resolution that the regular daily sessions of the
House commence at 10 A.M.

Mr. Fisher moved to insert "except when otherwise ordered."

On a division the motion was lost--14 to 6.

The resolution was then adopted.

Territorial Enterprise, January 1864


Carson, January 15.

The Committee on Rules for the Government of the House, reported
yesterday the good old-fashioned and entirely proper rule that members
and officers should keep their seats at adjournment until the Speaker
had declared the House adjourned and left the Chair. Well, sir, the
House debated it and voted it down. I can prove it by the Clerk's
Journal. Now, considering that it was a harmless measure, and a
customary one, and a mark of respect to the Chair; and considering that
it is very seldom enforced, and also, that it was a little disrespectful
to the Chair to vote it down, the action of the House in the matter
seems somewhat strained. But I will interrupt you just here, if you
please, and suggest to you that it is none of your business, and I want
to know what you are putting in your lip about it for? I expect we can
attend to our own affairs. And didn't they bullyrag that concurrent
resolution yesterday? I reckon not. I do not admire the taste of the
lobby members, though, in letting on as if they knew so much more about
it, when the House is being rent with the mortal agonies of an effort
to adjourn itself over for a week without adjourning the Council at the
same time. The House did not wish to adjourn the Council without being
asked to do so by that body, and if the House found it very nearly
impossible to word the resolution so as not to adjourn the Council
aforesaid, I do not conceive that it was dignified on the part of the
lobby members to express by their countenances that they had their
own opinions concerning the House. But didn't the House worry that
concurrent resolution for a few hours or so? You bet you. However, we
had better let "parliamentary usage" alone for the present, until our
former knowledge on the knotty subject returns to our memories. Because
Providence is not going to put up with this sort of thing much
longer, you know. I observe there is no lightning rod on these county
buildings.--MARK TWAIN

Territorial Enterprise, January 1864



Carson, January 20

Mr. Dean offered a resolution to employ a copying clerk.

Mr. Gillespie offered an amendment requiring the Engrossing and
Enrolling Clerks to do this proposed officer's work. [These two officers
are strictly ornamental--have been under wages since the first day
of the session--haven't had anything to do, and won't for two weeks
yet--and now by the eternal, they want some more useless clerical
jewelry to dangle to the Legislature. If the House would discharge its
extra scribblers, and let the Chief Clerk hire assistance only when he
wants it, it seems to me it would be better.--REP.]

Without considering the appointment of a new jimcrack ornament, and
starting his pay six weeks before he goes to work ( only thirteen
dollars a day), the House adjourned.

Territorial Enterprise, January 19-20, 1864


CARSON, January 14.


By authority of an invitation from Hon. Wm. M. Gillespie, member of
the House Committee on Colleges and Common Schools, I accompanied that
statesman on an unofficial visit to the excellent school of Miss Clapp
and Mrs. Cutler, this afternoon. The air was soft and balmy--the sky
was cloudless and serene--the odor of flowers floated upon the idle
breeze--the glory of the sun descended like a benediction upon mountain
and meadow and plain--the wind blew like the very devil, and the day was
generally disagreeable.

The school--however, I will mention, first that a charter for an
educational institution to be called the Sierra Seminary, was granted
to Miss Clapp during the Legislative session of 1861, and a bill will
be introduced while the present Assembly is in session, asking an
appropriation of $20,000 to aid the enterprise. Such a sum of money
could not be more judiciously expended, and I doubt not the bill will

The present school is a credit both to the teachers and the town. It
now numbers about forty pupils, I should think, and is well and
systematically conducted. The exercises this afternoon were of a
character not likely to be unfamiliar to the free American citizen who
has a fair recollection of how he used to pass his Friday afternoons
in the days of his youth. The tactics have undergone some changes, but
these variations are not important. In former times a fellow took his
place in the luminous spelling class in the full consciousness that
if he spelled cat with a "k," or indulged in any other little
orthographical eccentricities of a similar nature, he would be degraded
to the foot or sent to his seat; whereas, he keeps his place in the
ranks now, in such cases, and his punishment is simply to "'bout face."
Johnny Eaves stuck to his first position, to-day, long after the balance
of the class had rounded to, but he subsequently succumbed to the word
"nape," which he persisted in ravishing of its final vowel. There was
nothing irregular about that. Your rightly-constructed schoolboy will
spell a multitude of hard words without hesitating once, and then lose
his grip and miss fire on the easiest one in the book.

The fashion of reading selections of prose and poetry remains the same;
and so does the youthful manner of doing that sort of thing. Some pupils
read poetry with graceful ease and correct expression, and others place
the rising and falling inflection at measured intervals, as if they had
learned the lesson on a "see-saw;" but then they go undulating through
a stanza with such an air of unctuous satisfaction, that it is a comfort
to be around when they are at it.

"The boy--stoo-dawn--the burning deck--

When-sawl--but him had fled--

The flames--that shook--the battle--zreck--Shone round--him o'er--the

That is the old-fashioned impressive style--stately, slow-moving and
solemn. It is in vogue yet among scholars of tender age. It always will
be. Ever since Mrs. Hemans wrote that verse, it has suited the pleasure
of juveniles to emphasize the word "him," and lay atrocious stress upon
that other word "o'er," whether she liked it or not; and I am prepared
to believe that they will continue this practice unto the end of time,
and with the same indifference to Mrs. Hemans' opinions about it, or any
body's else.

They sing in school, now-a-days, which is an improvement upon the
ancient regime; and they don't catch flies and throw spit-balls at the
teacher, as they used to do in my time--which is another improvement,
in a general way. Neither do the boys and girls keep a sharp look-out on
each other's shortcomings and report the same at headquarters, as was
a custom of by-gone centuries. And this reminds me of Gov. Nye's last
anecdote, fulminated since the delivery of his message, and consequently
not to be found in that document. The company were swapping old school
reminiscences, and in due season they got to talking about that
extinct species of tell-tales that were once to be found in all
minor educational establishments, and who never failed to detect and
impartially denounce every infraction of the rules that occurred among
their mates. The Governor said that he threw a casual glance at a pretty
girl on the next bench one day, and she complained to the teacher--which
was entirely characteristic, you know. Says she, "Mister Jones, Warren
Nye's looking at me." Whereupon, without a suggestion from anybody, up
jumped an infamous, lisping, tow-headed young miscreant, and says he,
"Yeth, thir, I thee him do it!" I doubt if the old original boy got off
that ejaculation with more gusto than the Governor throws into it.

The "compositions" read to-day were as exactly like the compositions I
used to hear read in our school as one baby's nose is exactly like all
other babies' noses. I mean the old principal ear-marks were all there:
the cutting to the bone of the subject with the very first gash, without
any preliminary foolishness in the way of a gorgeous introductory; the
inevitable and persevering tautology; the brief, monosyllabic sentences
(beginning, as a very general thing, with the pronoun "I"); the penchant
for presenting rigid, uncompromising facts for the consideration of the
hearer, rather than ornamental fancies; the depending for the success of
the composition upon its general merits, without tacking artificial
aids to the end of it, in the shape of deductions, or conclusions, or
clap-trap climaxes, albeit their absence sometimes imparts to these
essays the semblance of having come to an end before they were
finished--of arriving at full speed at a jumping-off place and going
suddenly overboard, as it were, leaving a sensation such as one feels
when he stumbles without previous warning upon that infernal "To be
Continued" in the midst of a thrilling magazine story. I know there are
other styles of school compositions, but these are the characteristics
of the style which I have in my eye at present. I do not know why this
one has particularly suggested itself to my mind, unless the literary
effort of one of the boys there to-day left with me an unusually vivid
impression. It ran something in this wise:


"I like horses. Where we lived before we came here, we used to have a
cutter and horses. We used to ride in it. I like winter. I like snow.
I used to have a pony all to myself, where I used to live before I came
here. Once it drifted a good deal--very deep--and when it stopped I went
out and got in it."

That was all. There was no climax to it, except the spasmodic bow which
the tautological little student jerked at the school as he closed his

Two remarkably good compositions were read. Miss P.'s was much the best
of these--but aside from its marked literary excellence, it possessed
another merit which was peculiarly gratifying to my feelings just
at that time. Because it took the conceit out of young Gillespie as
completely as perspiration takes the starch out of a shirt-collar.
In his insufferable vanity, that feeble member of the House of
Representatives had been assuming imposing attitudes, and beaming
upon the pupils with an expression of benignant imbecility which was
calculated to inspire them with the conviction that there was only one
guest of any consequence in the house. Therefore, it was an unspeakable
relief to me to see him forced to shed his dignity. Concerning the
composition, however. After detailing the countless pleasures which had
fallen to her lot during the holidays, the authoress finished with a
proviso, in substance as follows--I have forgotten the precise language:
"But I have no cheerful reminiscences of Christmas. It was dreary,
monotonous and insipid to the last degree. Mr. Gillespie called early,
and remained the greater part of the day!" You should have seen the
blooming Gillespie wilt when that literary bombshell fell in his camp!
The charm of the thing lay in the fact that that last naive sentence
was the only suggestion offered in the way of accounting for the
dismal character of the occasion. However, to my mind it was
sufficient--entirely sufficient.

Since writing the above, I have seen the architectural plans and
specifications for Miss Clapp and Mrs. Cutler's proposed "Sierra
Seminary" building. It will be a handsome two-story edifice, one hundred
feet square, and will accommodate forty "boarders" and any number of
pupils beside, who may board elsewhere. Constructed of wood, it will
cost $12,000; or of stone, $18,000. Miss Clapp has devoted ten acres of
ground to the use and benefit of the institution. I sat down intending
to write a dozen pages of variegated news. I have about accomplished the
task--all except the "variegated." I have economised in the matter of
current news of the day, considerably more than I purposed to do, for
every item of that nature remains stored away in my mind in a very
unwritten state, and will afford unnecessarily ample material for
another letter. It is useless material, though, I suspect, because,
inasmuch as I have failed to incorporate it into this, I fear me I shall
not feel industrious enough to weave out of it another letter until it
has become too stale to be interesting. Well, never mind--we must learn
to take an absorbing delight in educational gossip; nine-tenths of the
revenues of the Territory go into the bottomless gullet of that ravenous
school fund, you must bear in mind.


Territorial Enterprise, January, 1864



Carson, January 21

An officer of the House--Charles Carter, Messenger--is lying at the
point of death this morning. He ruptured a blood vessel of the brain,
night before last, previous to which time he was in robust health. He
was a youth of great promise, and was respected and esteemed by all
who knew him. He held the position of Messenger of the House during the
session of 1862, and his faithful attention to the duties of the office
then was endorsed by his re-election the present session.

The chief portion of the population of Carson spent last night in
feasting and dancing at the Warm Springs. Such of them as are out of
bed at this hour, declare the occasion to have been one of unmitigated

The House met at 10 A.M.


Mr. Calder asked and obtained leave for one day for Mr. Clagett who was
engaged in drafting a bill.


Mr. Stewart rose to a question of privilege, and said the ENTERPRISE
and Union reporters had been moving Ellen Redman's toll-bridge from its
proper position on the Carson Slough to an illegal one on the Humboldt
Slough. [I did that. If Ellen Redman don't like it, I can move her
little bridge back again--but under protest. I waded that Humboldt
Slough once, and I have always had a hankering to see a bridge over it

Mr. Phillips moved to amend Mr. Gillespie's resolution by striking out
that portion which puts the Enrolling and Engrossing Clerks under the
sole control of the Chief Clerk. Lost.

A warm debate sprung up on the subject. Mr. Gillespie manfully contended
for the justness and expediency of adopting his resolution, and stated
several propositions which were eminently correct, to-wit: that these
subordinate officers ought to be under the control of the Chief Clerk;
that they were under the pay of the House, and had been for some time,
and yet had nothing to do; and finally, that copying being within
the scope of their duties, they ought to be put at it and afforded
an opportunity of rendering an equivalent for their salaries. Messrs.
Stewart, Dixson and others were very fearful of discommoding the
subordinate clerks, and very anxious to embellish the House with some
more fellows calculated to swing a sinecure gracefully. The Chief Clerk
stated that Mr. Powell, the Enrolling Clerk, had labored assiduously,
from the first, in rendering any and all assistance asked at his hands,
but nobody coming forward to say how much Captain Murphy had done, and
nobody being supplied with a pile of estimates [sufficient] to portray
how much he hadn't done, it became the general impression that Captain
Murphy had been considerably more ornamental than useful to the House of
Representatives. But I am here only during the courtesy of the House--on
my good behavior, as it were--and I am a little afraid that if I say
this aggregation of Wisdom elected Captain Murphy more out of regard for
his military services than respect for the nasty manner in which he can
sling a pen, I shall get notice to quit.--MARK.

Mr. Gillespie, on leave, amended his resolution by adding "Provided said
clerks shall not be interfered with in the discharge of their respective
duties"--and had the resolution not been furnished with this loophole if
it had not been thus emasculated, it would not have passed. By a scratch
it carried, though, and here are the voters' names:

AYES--Messrs. Calder, Elliott, Gillespie, Gove, Hess, Hunter, McDonald,
Nelson, Requa, Trask, Ungar, Speaker--12.

NOES-Messrs. Barclay, Curler, Dean, Dixson, Fisher, Heaton, Jones,
Phillips, Stewart, Tennant--10.

Territorial Enterprise, January 1864



Carson City, January 27


The House resolved itself into Committee of the Whole, Mr. Fisher in the
chair, upon the unfinished business of the general orders, and occupied
the remainder of the forenoon session in the consideration of the Act
providing for the appointment of Notaries Public and defining their
duties. [This is a most important bill, and if passed will secure
clearer and more comprehensible records hereafter. It will leave Storey
county twelve Notaries in place of the fifteen hundred we have at
present, and these twelve will have to be men of solid reputation,
since they will have to give heavier bonds than all the fifteen hundred
combined do at present; they must give bail in the sum of $5,000
each--$60,000 altogether. Mr. Fisher said three would be sufficient
for Douglas county--he didn't want all the property there tied up in
Notary's bonds. Mr. Clagett said there was scarcely a valid deed on the
Humboldt records, because the certificates attached to them by ignorant
Notaries were worthless, and he supposed property worth millions had
already been jeopardized in the Territory by this kind of officers. He
said one really splendid ignoramus out there who forwarded a bond in
the sum of $10, had it returned with a notification that it must be
increased to $500; he couldn't straddle the blind, and had to give up
his commission. Besides, Mr. Clagett said, the passage of this Act would
oust from office some twenty-five rabid Secessionists in Humboldt county
alone! [Sensation.] If you could just see the official bonds drawn up
and sent to the office of the Secretary of the Territory by some of
these mentally deaf, dumb and blind Notaries, you would wonder, as I
do, what they have been and gone and done, that Heaven should be down on
them so. They never use revenue stamps--they don't subscribe the oath,
they--well, they don't do anything that could lay them liable to an
accusation of knowing it all, or even any fraction of it.

[Mr. Tennant said some few secesh had been appointed in Lander, but not
so many as in Humboldt--they found one secesh in Lander last spring, and
Acting-Governor Clemens captured him. I send you a copy of the bill, as
they have just finished amending it in the Committee of the Whole, and
suggest that you publish it.--MARK]

Territorial Enterprise, January 1864


Carson City, January 28, 1864


I delivered that message last night, but I didn't talk loud
enough--people in the far end of the hall could not hear me. They said
"Louder--louder," occasionally, but I thought that was a way they had--a
joke, as it were. I had never talked to a crowd before, and knew none
of the tactics of the public speaker. I suppose I spoke loud enough
for some houses, but not for that District Court room, which is about
seventy-five feet from floor to roof, and has no ceiling. I hope the
people will deal as mildly with me, however, as I did with the public
officers in the annual message. Some folks heard the entire document,
though--there is some comfort in that. Hon. Mr. Clagett, Speaker Simmons
of the inferior House, Hon. Hal Clayton, Speaker of the Third House,
Judge Haydon, Dr. Alban, and others whose opinions are entitled to
weight, said they would travel several miles to hear that message again.
It affords me a good deal of satisfaction to mention it. It serves to
show that if the audience could have heard-me distinctly, they would
have appreciated the wisdom thus conferred upon them. They seemed to
appreciate what they did hear though, pretty thoroughly. After the first
quarter of an hour I ceased to whisper, and became audible. One of these
days, when I get time, I will correct, amend and publish the message, in
accordance with a resolution of the Third House ordering 300,000 copies
in the various languages spoken at the present day.

P.S.--Sandy Baldwin and Theodore Winters heard that message, anyhow, and
by thunder they appreciated it, too. They have sent a hundred dollars
apiece to San Francisco this morning, to purchase a watch chain for His
Excellency Governor Twain. I guess that is a pretty good result for an
incipient oratorical slouch like me, isn't it? I don't know that anybody
tendered the other Governor a testimonial of any kind.


Territorial Enterprise, November 1863-February 1864



[TRAVELING WITH ADOLPH SUTRO.--] Eight left Virginia yesterday and came
down to Dayton with Mr. Sutro. Time 30 minutes--distance 8 or 9 miles.
There is nothing very slow about that kind of travel. We found Dayton
the same old place but taking up a good deal more room than it did the
last time I saw it, and looking more brisk and lively with its increase
of business, and more handsome on account of the beautiful dressed stone
buildings with which it is being embellished of late.

Just as we got fairly under way, and were approaching Ball Robert's
bridge, Sutro's dog, "Carlo," got to skirmishing around in the
extravagant exuberance of his breakfast, and shipped up a fight with six
or seven other dogs whom he was entirely unacquainted with, had never
met before and probably has no desire to meet again. He waltzed into
them right gallantly and right gallantly waltzed out again.

We also left at about this time and trotted briskly across Ball Robert's
bridge. I remarked that Ball Robert's bridge was a good one and a credit
to that bald gentleman. I said it in a fine burst of humor and more on
account of the joke than anything else, but Sutro is insensible to the
more delicate touches of American wit, and the effort was entirely lost
on him. I don't think Sutro minds a joke of mild character any more than
a dead man would. However, I repeated it once or twice without producing
any visible effect, and finally derived what comfort I could by laughing
at it myself.

Mr. Sutro being a confirmed businessman, replied in a practical and
businesslike way. He said the bridge was a good one, and so were all
public blessings of a similar nature when entrusted to the hands of
private individuals. He said if the county had built the bridge it would
have cost an extravagant sum of money, and would have been eternally
out of repair. He also said the only way to get public work well and
properly done was to let it out by contract.

"For instance," says he, "they have fooled away two or three years
trying to capture Richmond, whereas if they had let the job by contract
to some sensible businessman, the thing would have been accomplished and
forgotten long ago." It was a novel and original idea and I forgot my
joke for the next half hour in speculating upon its feasibility...

Territorial Enterprise, February 9, 1864

Letter from Carson City


A strange, strange thing occurred here yesterday, to wit:


Think of it. Ponder over it. He wanted a notarial commission--he said so
himself. He was from Storey county. He brought his little petition along
with him. He brought it on two stages. It is voluminous. The County
Surveyor is chaining it off. Three shifts of clerks will be employed
night and day on it, deciphering the signatures and testing their
genuineness. They began unrolling the petition at noon, and people of
strong mining proclivities at once commenced locating claims on it. We
are too late, you know. But then they say the extensions are just as
good as the original. I believe you.

Since writing the above, I have discovered that the foregoing does not
amount to much as a sensation item, after all. The reason is, because
there are seventeen hundred and forty-two applications for notaryships
already on file in the Governor's office. I was not aware of it, you
know. There are also as much as eleven cords of petitions stacked up
in his back yard. A watchman stands guard over this combustible
material--the back yard is not insured. Since writing the above, strange
events have happened. I started downtown, and had not gone far, when I
met a seedy, ornery, ratty, hang-dog-looking stranger, who approached me
in the most insinuating manner, and said he was glad to see me. He
said he had often sighed for an opportunity of becoming acquainted with
me--that he had read my effusions (he called them "effusions,") with
solemn delight, and had yearned to meet the author face to face. He said
he was Billson--Billson of Lander--I might have heard of him. I told him
I had--many a time--which was an infamous falsehood. He said "D--n it,
old Quill-driver you must come and take a drink with me"; and says I,
"D--n it, old Vermin-ranch, I'll do it." [I had him there.] We took a
drink, and he told the bar-keeper to charge it. After which, he opened
a well-filled carpet-sack and took out a shirt-collar and a petition. He
then threw the empty carpet-sack aside and unrolled several yards of the
petition--"just for a starter," he said. "Now," says he, "Mark, have you
got a good deal of influence with Governor?" "Unbounded," says I, with
honest pride; "when I go and use my influence with Governor Nye, and
tell him it will be a great personal favor to me if he will do so and
so, he always says it will be a real pleasure to him--that if it were
any other man--any other man in the world--but seeing it's me, he wont."
Mr. Billson then remarked that I was the very man; he wanted a little
notarial appointment, and he would like me to mention it to the
Governor. I said I would, and turned away, resolved to damn young
Billson's official aspirations with a mild dose of my influence.

I walked about ten steps, and met a cordial man, with the dust of
travel upon his garments. He mashed my hands in his, and as I stood
straightening the joints back into their places again, says he, "Why
darn it, Mark, how well you're looking! Thunder! It's been an age since
I saw you. Turn around and let's look at you good. 'Gad, it's the same
old Mark! Well, how've you been--and what have you been doing with
yourself lately? Why don't you never come down and see a fellow? Every
time I come to town, the old woman's sure to get after me for not
bringing you out, as soon as I get back. Why she takes them articles of
yourn, and slathers 'em into her old scrap-book, along with deaths and
marriages, and receipts for the itch, and the small-pox, and hell knows
what all, and if it warn't that you talk too slow to ever make love,
dang my cats if I wouldn't be jealous of you. But what's the use fooling
away time here?--let's go and gobble a cocktail." This was old Boreas,
from Washoe. I went and gobbled a cocktail with him. He mentioned
incidentally, that he wanted a notaryship, and showed me a good deal
of his petition. I said I would use my influence in his behalf, and
requested him to call at the Governor's office in the morning, and get
his commission. He thanked me most heartily, and said he would. [I think
I see him doing of it.]

I met another stranger before I got to the corner--a pompous little man
with a crooked-handled cane and sorrel moustache. Says he, "How do you
do, Mr. Twain--how do you do, sir? I am happy to see you, sir--very
happy indeed, sir. My name is _____ _____. Pardon me, sir, but I
perceive you do not entirely recollect me--I am J. Bidlecome Dusenberry,
of Esmeralda, formerly of the city of New York, sir." "Well," says
I, "I'm glad to meet you, Dysentery, and--" "No, no Dusenberry, sir,
Dusenberry!--you--" "Oh, I beg your pardon," says I; "Dusenberry--yes,
I understand, now; but it's all the same, you know--Dusenberry, by any
other name would--however, I see you have a bale of dry goods--for me,
perhaps." He said it was only a little petition, and proceeded to show
me a few acres of it, observing casually that he was the candidate in
the notarial line--that he had read my lucumbrations (he called it all
that) with absorbing interest, and he would like me to use my influence
with the Governor in his behalf. I assured him his commission would
be ready for him as soon as it was signed. He appeared overcome with
gratitude, and insisted, and insisted, and insisted, until at last I
went and took a drink with him.

On the next corner I met Chief Justice Turner, on his way to the
Governor's office with a petition. He said, "God bless you, my dear
fellow--I'm delighted to see you--" and hurried on, after receiving my
solemn promise that he should be a Notary Public if I could secure his
appointment. Next I met William Stewart, grinning in his engaging way,
and stroking his prodigious whiskers from his nose to his stomach. Sandy
Baldwin was with him, and they both had measureless petitions on a dray
with the names all signed in their own handwriting. I knew those fellows
pretty well and I didn't promise them my influence. I knew if the
Governor refused to appoint them, they would have an injunction on him
in less than twenty-four hours, and stop the issuance of any more Notary
commissions. I met John B. Winters, next, and Judge North, and Mayor
Arick, and Washoe Jim, and John O. Earl, and Ah Foo, and John H.
Atchinson, and Hong Wo, and Wells Fargo, and Charley Strong, and Bob
Morrow, and Gen. Williams, and seventy-two other prominent citizens
of Storey county, with a long pack-train laden with their several
petitions. I examined their documents, and promised to use my influence
toward procuring notaryships for the whole tribe. I also drank with

I wandered down the street, conversing with every man I met, examining
his petition. It became a sort of monomania with me, and I kept it
up for two hours with unflagging interest. Finally, I stumbled upon a
pensive, travel-worn stranger, leaning against an awning-post. I went up
and looked at him. He looked at me. I looked at him again, and again he
looked at me. I bent my gaze upon him once more, and says I, "Well?" He
looked at me very hard, and says he, "Well--" "Well what?" says I, "Well
I would like to examine your petition, if you please."

He looked very much astonished--I may say amazed. When he had recovered
his presence of mind, he says "What the devil do you mean?" I explained
to him that I only wanted to glance over his petition for a notaryship.
He said he believed I was a lunatic--he didn't like the unhealthy light
in my eye, and he didn't want me to come any closer to him. I asked him
if he had escaped the epidemic, and he shuddered said he didn't know of
any epidemic. I pointed to the large placard on the wall: "Coaches
will leave the Ormsby House punctually every fifteen minutes, for the
Governor's mansion, for the accommodation of Notorial aspirants, etc.,
etc.--Schemerhorn, Agent"--and I asked him if he didn't know enough to
understand what that meant? I also pointed to the long procession of
petition-laden citizens filing up the street toward the Governor's
house, and asked him if he was not aware that all those fellows were
going after notarial commissions--that the balance of the people had
already gone, and that he and I had the whole town to ourselves? He was
astonished again. Then he placed his hand upon his heart, and swore a
frightful oath that he had just arrived from over the mountains, and had
no petition, and didn't want a notaryship. I gazed upon him a moment in
silent rapture, and then clasped him to my breast. After which, I
told him it was my turn to treat, by thunder. Whereupon, we entered a
deserted saloon, and drank up its contents. We lay upon a billiard table
in a torpid condition for many minutes, but at last my exile rose up and
muttered in a sepulchral voice, "I feel it--O Heavens, I feel it in me
veins!" "Feel what?" says I, alarmed. Says he, "I feel--O me sainted
mother!--I feel--feel--a hankering to be a Notary Public!" And he tore
down several yards of wall-paper, and fell to writing a petition on it.
Poor devil--he had got it at last, and got it bad. I was seized with
the fatal distemper a moment afterward. I wrote a petition with frantic
haste, appended a copy of the Directory of Nevada Territory to it, and
we fled down the deserted streets to the Governor's office.

But I must draw the curtain upon these harrowing scenes--the memory of
them scorches my brain. Ah, this Legislature has much to answer for in
cutting down the number of Notaries Public in this Territory, with their
infernal new law.

Territorial Enterprise, February 12, 1864


Carson City, February 5, 1864


EDITORS ENTERPRISE: Theodore Winters handsome dwelling in Washoe Valley,
is an eloquent witness in behalf of Mr. Steele's architectural skill.
The basement story is built of brick, and the spacious court which
surrounds it, and whose columns support the verandah above, is
paved with large, old-fashioned tiles. On this floor is the kitchen,
dining-room, bath-room, bed-chambers for servants, and a commodious
store-room, with shelves laden with all manner of substantials and
luxuries for the table. All these apartments are arranged in the most
convenient manner, and are fitted and furnished handsomely and plainly,
but expensively. Water pipes are numerous in this part of the house, and
the fluid they carry is very pure, and cold and clear. On the next floor
above, are two unusually large drawing-rooms, richly furnished, and
gotten up in every respect with faultless taste which is a remark one is
seldom enabled to apply to parlors and drawing-rooms on this coast.
The colors in the carpets, curtains, etc., are of a warm and cheerful
nature, but there is nothing gaudy about them. The ceilings are
decorated with pure, white mouldings of graceful pattern. Two large
bed-chambers adjoin the parlors, and are supplied with elaborately
carved black walnut four-hundred-dollar bedsteads, similar to those used
by Dan and myself in Virginia; the remainder of the furniture of these
chambers is correspondingly sumptuous and expensive. On the floor above
are half a dozen comfortable bedrooms for the accommodation of visitors;
also a spacious billiard-room which will shortly be graced by a table of
superb workmanship. The windows of the house are of the "Gothic" style,
and set with stained glass; the chandeliers are of bronze; the stair
railings of polished black walnut, and the principal doors of some kind
of dark-colored wood--mahogany, I suppose. There are two peculiarly
pleasant features about this house the ceilings are high, and the halls
of unusual width. The building--above the basement story--is of wood,
and strongly and compactly put together. It stands upon tolerably
high ground, and from its handsome verandah, Mr. Winters can see every
portion of his vast farm. From the stables to the parlors, the house
and its belongings is a model of comfort, convenience and substantial
elegance; everything is of the best that could be had, and there is no
circus flummery visible about the establishment.

I went out there to a party a short time ago, in the night, behind a
pair of Cormack's fast horses, with John James. On account of losing the
trail of the telegraph poles, we wandered out among the shingle machines
in the Sierras, and were delayed several hours. We arrived in time,
however, to take a large share in the festivities which were being
indulged in by the Governor and the Supreme Court and some twenty other
guests. The party was given by Messrs. Joe Winters and Pete Hopkins (at
Theodore Winters' expense) as a slight testimonial of their regard for
the friends they invited to be present. There was nothing to detract
from the pleasure of the occasion, except Lovejoy, who detracted most of
the wines and liquors from it.


I expect Mr. Lawlor keeps the best private school in the Territory--or
the best school of any kind, for that matter. I attended one of his
monthly examinations a week ago, or such a matter, with Mr. Clagett,
and we arrived at the conclusion that one might acquire a good college
education there within the space of six months. Mr. Lawlor's is a little
crib of a school-house, papered from door to ceiling with black-boards
adorned with impossible mathematical propositions done in white chalk.
The effect is bewildering, to the stranger, but otherwise he will find
the place comfortable enough. When we arrived, the teacher was talking
in a rambling way upon a great many subjects, like a member of the
House speaking to a point of order, and three boys were making verbatim
reports of his remarks in Graham's phonographic short-hand on the walls
of the school-room. These pupils had devoted half an hour to the study
and practice of this accomplishment every day for the past four or five
months, and the result was a proficiency usually attained only after
eighteen months of application. It was amazing. Mr. Lawlor has so
simplified the art of teaching in every department of instruction, that
I am confident he could impart a thorough education in a short time to
any individual who has as much as a spoonful of brains to work upon. It
is in no spirit of extravagance that I set it down here as my serious
conviction that Mr. Lawlor could even take one of our Miss Nancy
"Meriden" Prosecuting Attorneys and post him up so in a month or two
that he could tell his own witnesses from those of the defense in nine
cases out of ten. Mind, I do not give this as an absolute certainty, but
merely as an opinion of mine and one which is open to grave doubts,
too, I am willing to confess, now, when I come to think calmly and
dispassionately about it. No--the truth is, the more I think of it, the
more I weaken. I expect I spoke too soon--went off before I was primed,
as it were. With your permission, I will take it all back. I know two
or three prosecuting attorneys, and I am satisfied the foul density of
their intellects would put out any intellectual candle that Mr. Lawlor
could lower into them. I do not say that a Higher Power could not
miraculously illuminate them. No, I only say I would rather see it
first. A man always has more confidence in a thing after he has seen
it, you know; at least that is the way with me. But to proceed with that
school. Mr. Clagett invited one of those phonographic boys--Master
Barry Ashim--to come and practice his short-hand in the House of
Representatives. He accepted the invitation, and in accordance with
resolutions offered by Messrs. Clagett and Stewart, he was tendered the
compliment of a seat on the floor of the House during the session, and
the Sergeant-at-Arms instructed to furnish him with a desk and such
stationery as he might require. He has already become a reporter of no
small pretensions. There is a class in Mr. Lawlor's school composed of
children three months old and upwards, who know the spelling book by
heart. If you ask them what the first word is, in any given lesson, they
will tell you in a moment, and then go on and spell every word (thirty
five) in the lesson, without once referring to the book or making a
mistake. Again, you may mention a word and they will tell you which
particular lesson it is in, and what words precede it and follow it.
Then, again, you may propound an abstruse grammatical enigma, and the
school will solve it in chorus--will tell you what language is correct,
and what isn't; and why and wherefore; and quote rules and illustrations
until you wish you hadn't said anything. Two or three doses of this kind
will convince a man that there are youngsters in this school who know
everything about grammar that can be learned, and what is just
as important, can explain what they know so that other people can
understand it. But when those fellows get to figuring, let second-rate
mathematicians stand from under! For behold, it is their strong suit.
They work miracles on a black-board with a piece of chalk. Witchcraft
and sleight-of-hand, and all that sort of thing is foolishness to the
facility with which they can figure a moral impossibility down to an
infallible result. They only require about a dozen figures to do a sum
which by all ordinary methods would consume a hundred and fifty. These
fellows could cypher a week on a sheet of foolscap. They can find out
anything they want to with figures, and they are very quick about it,
too. You tell them, for instance, that you were born in such and such a
place, on such and such a day of the month, in such and such a year,
and they will tell you in an instant how old your grandmother is. I
have never seen any banker's clerks who could begin to cypher with those
boys. It has been Virginia's unchristian policy to grab everything that
was of any account that ever came into the Territory--Virginia could do
many a worse thing than to grab this school and move it into the shadow
of Mount Davidson, teacher and all.


There is a system of extortion going on here which is absolutely
terrific, and I wonder the Carson Independent has never ventilated the
subject. There seems to be only one undertaker in the town, and he owns
the only graveyard in which it is at all high-toned or aristocratic to
be buried. Consequently, when a man loses his wife or his child, or his
mother, this undertaker makes him sweat for it. I appeal to those whose
firesides death has made desolate during the few fatal weeks just past,
if I am not speaking the truth. Does not this undertaker take advantage
of that unfortunate delicacy which prevents a man from disputing
an unjust bill for services rendered in burying the dead, to extort
ten-fold more than his labors are worth? I have conversed with a good
many citizens on this subject, and they all say the same thing: that
they know it is wrong that a man should be unmercifully fleeced under
such circumstances, but, according to the solemn etiquette above
referred to, he cannot help himself. All that sounds very absurd to
me. I have a human distaste for death, as applied to myself, but I see
nothing very solemn about it as applied to anybody--it is more to be
dreaded than a birth or a marriage, perhaps, but it is really not as
solemn a matter as either of these, when you come to take a rational,
practical view of the case. Therefore I would prefer to know that an
undertaker's bill was a just one before I paid it; and I would rather
see it go clear to the Supreme Court of the United States, if I
could afford the luxury, than pay it if it were distinguished for its
unjustness. A great many people in the world do not think as I do about
these things. But I care nothing for that. The knowledge that I am
right is sufficient for me. This undertaker charges a hundred and fifty
dollars for a pine coffin that cost him twenty or thirty, and fifty
dollars for a grave that did not cost him ten--and this at a time when
his ghastly services are required at least seven times a week. I gather
these facts from some of the best citizens of Carson, and I can publish
their names at any moment if you want them. What Carson needs is a
few more undertakers--there is vacant land enough here for a thousand
cemeteries. MARK TWAIN

Territorial Enterprise, February 1864



Carson, February 8, 1864

This bill appears--to a man up a tree--to be a bill of sale of Nevada
Territory to the California State Telegraph Company. They never print
this kind of bills--wherefore I shall have to copy it myself for you.
It flashed through the House under a suspension of the rules, before you
could wink, they tell me. It provides that Mr. Watson (his other name is
the California State Telegraph Company) shall have the exclusive right
to connect Star, Unionville, Austin, Virginia, Gold Hill, Carson,
etc., etc., with Sacramento and San Francisco, and nobody else shall be
permitted to do likewise, for five years after this line is completed,
and with a liberal length of time allowed Mr. Watson in which to get
ready to begin to commence completing it. To have all the telegraph
lines in the hands of one Company, makes it a little binding on
newspapers and other people.--MARK.]

Territorial Enterprise, February 1864



Carson, February 9.

I see you want the ayes and noes on all important measures. Long ago I
got a batch of roll-calls and prepared to post the people concerning the
final action of this body upon the various bills presented. But I got
tired of it. I found the House too unanimous; they always voted aye,
and I discovered that the list of noes was a useless incumbrance to
the roll-call. Now when an important measure passes this House, and I
neglect the roll-call, that need be no excuse for your doing the same
thing; just publish the list of members and say they voted "aye"--you'll
be about right. The thing is done thus: When a bill is on its final
passage, and a member hears his name called, he rouses up and asks
what's going on? The Speaker says, by way of information, "Third reading
of a bill, sir." The member says, "Oh!--well, I vote aye," and
becomes torpid again at once. Now, concerning that infamous telegraph
monstrosity, it passed to its third reading in this House on the 4th of
February. Messrs. Babcock, Dixson, Gray and Stewart were absent, and had
no opportunity of voting aye but all the balance voted affirmatively, of
course, as follows: AYES--Messrs. Barclay, Brumfield, Calder, Clagett,
Curler, Deane, Elliott, Fisher, Gillespie, Gove, Heaton, Hess, Hunter,
Jones, McDonald, Nelson, Phillips, Requa, Tennant, Trask, Ungar and Mr.


Territorial Enterprise, February 1864



CARSON, February 10

The House then went into Committee of the Whole on the special
order--Mr. Fisher in the Chair--and took up the first bill on the list.
[Some seventy-five ladies have swarmed into the House, and the process
of swarming still continues. I have a presentiment that I am to have
an exhaustless stream of weak platitudes inflicted upon me by Young
Gillespie and other unmarried members.--MARK.]

Territorial Enterprise, February 1864



CARSON, February 11

The House met at 10 A.M. Present, 18. Absent, Messrs. Clagett, Dixson,
Gillespie, Phillips, Stewart and Ungar.


Mr. Heaton rose to a question of privilege, and said he was reported in
the ENTERPRISE as having moved that the Committee of the Whole recommend
the rejection of Miss Clapp's Seminary bill. That was a mistake. He
said his motion was to refer the bill back to the Standing Committee on
Colleges and Common Schools. [I suppose that is true; I do not consider
myself responsible for mistakes made when the House is full of beautiful
women, who are: writing tender notes to me all the time and expecting me
to answer them. In cases of this kind, I would just as soon misrepresent
a member as any other way.--MARK] Mr. Heaton was easy on the reporters,
but he was very severe on Mr. Gillespie. He said it would appear from
the report that Mr. Gillespie included him among those members who had
dodged the issue on the telegraph bill--whereas he was absent from the
House, by permission of the Speaker, with the Prison Committee.

The Speaker said there was nothing incorrect about the report--that
Mr. Heaton was shielded from Mr. Gillespie's insinuation by a preceding
paragraph, which stated the fact that he had been excused from

Whereupon Jefferson's Manual arose the same being known on the credit
accounts of the several saloons as "Young Gillespie"--and proceeded to
waste the time of the House, as usual, in dilating upon some trivial
distinction without a difference. [He was after the reporter of the
ENTERPRISE, in the first place, but before I could catch his drift,
he fell a victim to his old regular "parliamentary usage"
dysentery,--passed his brains, and became a smiling, sociable, driveling
lunatic. Consequently, I failed to find out what I had been doing to
young Gillespie, after all.--MARK TWAIN.]



A message was received from the Council, transmitting the following

Council bill incorporating the Austin Christian Association. [The
Speaker was at a loss to know what committee to refer a bill of such an
unusual nature to--wherein his head was level. He finally referred it
to the Lander delegation, two of the most faithful and consistent
supporters of the Devil there are in the House.--MARK.]

Council bill for the relief of certain parties. Referred to the
Committee on Claims.

At 5 P.M. the House adjourned until 6:30 P.M.

[While I was absent a moment, yesterday, on important business, taking a
drink, the House, with its accustomed engaging unanimity, knocked one of
my pet bills higher than a kite, without a dissenting voice. I
convened the members in extra session last night, and deluged them
with blasphemy, after which I entered into a solemn compact with them,
whereby, in consideration of their re-instating my bill, I was to make
an ample apology for all the mean things I had said about them for
passing that infamous, unchristian, infernal telegraph bill the other
day. I also promised to apologize for all the mean things that other
people had published against them for their depraved action aforesaid.
They reinstated my pet to-day, unanimously, thus fulfilling their
contract to the letter, and in conformity with my promise above referred
to, I hereby solemnly apologize for their rascally conduct in
passing the infamous telegraph bill above mentioned. Under ordinary
circumstances, they never would have done such a thing--but upon that
occasion I think they had been fraternizing with Clagett and Simmons
at the White House, and were under the vicious influence of Humboldt
whisky. Consequently, they were not responsible, Sir--they were not
responsible, either to anybody on earth or in heaven.--MARK TWAIN.]

Territorial Enterprise, February 1864



CARSON, February 12

An Act to amend an Act relating to game and fish. The passage of this
bill was also recommended. [It provides that trout shall neither be
caught in this Territory, nor exposed for sale, between the first of
January and the first of April, under a penalty of $25 for each fish
caught, killed or destroyed, or bought, sold or exposed for sale. The
Act goes into effect on the first of the coming March, and therefore it
would be well to publish it for the information of the people. It is a
good law, and calls our lake by its right name Lake Bigler--and rejects
the spooney appellation of "Tahoe," which signifieth "grasshopper" in
the Digger tongue, and "breech clout" in the Washoe lingo. Bigler is
the legitimate name of the Lake, and it will be retained until some name
less flat, insipid and spooney than "Tahoe" is invented for it. I
am sorry, myself, that it was not called in the first place by some
cognomen that could be persuaded to rhyme with something, because, you
see, every sentimental cuss who goes up there and becomes pregnant with
a poem invariably miscarries because of the unfortunate difficulty I
have just mentioned. I speak of the matter lightly, but it is not a
frivolous one, for all that. A very beautiful thing was once written
by a distinguished English poet about our royal river at home, but the
loveliness was all mashed out of it by the stress of weather to which he
was obliged to succumb in order to gouge a rhyme out of its name. He had
to call it "Mississip"!--MARK.]

Territorial Enterprise, February 1864



CARSON, February 13

An Act to incorporate the Virginia, Gold Hill, Washoe and Carson

[More railroads, you observe. The Council killed the Virginia and Dayton
Railroad bill the other day. That franchise was well guarded, and the
road would have been built. Will this, or any of the others?--REP.]

Mr. Barclay moved to lay the bill on the table. Lost.

The bill then passed by the following vote: [ayes 11, noes 9].

Territorial Enterprise, February 1864


Carson City, February 13, 1864


EDITORS ENTERPRISE: The Independent takes hold of a wretched public evil
and shakes it and bullyrags it in the following determined and spirited
manner this morning:

"Our friend, Mark Twain, is such a joker that we cannot tell when he is
really in earnest. He says in his last letter to the ENTERPRISE, that
our undertaker charges exorbitantly for his services--as much as $150
for a pine coffin, and $50 for a grave and is astonished that the
Independent has not, ere this, said something about this extortion. As
yet we have had no occasion for a coffin or a bit of ground for grave
purposes, and therefore know nothing about the price of such things.
If any of our citizens think they have been imposed upon in this
particular, it is their duty to ventilate the matter. We have heard no

That first sentence is false, and that clause in the second, which
refers to the Independent, is false, also. I knew better than to be
astonished when I wrote it. Unfortunately for the public of Carson, both
propositions in the third sentence are true. Having had no use for a
coffin himself, the editor "therefore knows nothing about the price of
such things." It is my unsolicited opinion that he knows very little
about anything. And anybody who will read his paper calmly and
dispassionately for a week will endorse that opinion. And more
especially his knowing nothing about Carson, is not surprising; he
seldom mentions that town in his paper. If the Second advent were to
occur here, you would hear of it first in some other newspaper. He
says, "If any of our citizens think they have been imposed upon in
this particular, it is their duty to ventilate the latter." It is their
duty--the duty of the citizens--to ferret out abuses and correct them,
is it? Correct them through your advertising columns and pay for it--is
that it? And then turn to your second page and find one of your insipid
chalk-milk editorials, defending the abuse and apologizing for the
perpetrator of it; or when public sentiment is too well established on
the subject, pretending, as in the above case, that you are the only
man in the community who don't know anything about it. Where did you get
your notion of the duties of a journalist from? Any editor in the world
will say it is your duty to ferret out these abuses, and your duty to
correct them. What are you paid for? What use are you to the community?
What are you fit for as conductor of a newspaper, if you cannot do these
things? Are you paid to know nothing, and keep on writing about it every
day? How long do you suppose such a jack-legged newspaper as yours would
be supported or tolerated in Carson, if you had a rival no larger than
a foolscap sheet, but with something in it, and whose editor would know,
or at least have energy enough to find out, whether a neighboring paper
abused one of the citizens justly or unjustly? That paragraph which I
have copied, seems to mean one thing, while in reality it means another.
It's true translation is, for instance: "Our name is Independent--that
is, in different phrase, Opinionless. We have no opinions on any
subject--we reside permanently on the fence. In order to have no
opinions, it is necessary that we should know nothing--therefore, if
this undertaker is fleecing the people, we will not know it, and then we
shall not offend him. We have heard no complaints, and we shall make no
inquiries, lest we do hear some."

Now, when I published a sarcasm upon the San Francisco Water Company,
and the iniquity of "cooking dividends," some time ago, in the
attractive form of a massacre at Dutch Nick's, by an irresponsible
crazy man, this lively Independent came after me with the spirit of
Old Hopkins strong upon him, and launched at me the red bolts of
its virtuous wrath for bringing the high mission of journalism into
disrepute for leading the citizens of California to believe that the
murderous proclivities of this people were more extensive than they
really were, or, in other words, creating the impression abroad that we
were all lunatics and liable to slay and destroy one another upon the
slightest provocation. I did not reply to that, because I took it to be
the fellow's honest opinion; and being his honest opinion, it was his
duty to express it, whether it galled me or not. But he has permitted so
many greater wrongs to pass unnoticed since then, that I have arrived
at the conclusion that he only did it to modify the circulation of the
ENTERPRISE hereabouts. I should be sorry to think he did it to procure
my discharge. He would not, if he knew I was an orphan. Yet the same
eyes that saw a great public wrong in that article on the massacre,
wilfully see no wrong in this undertaker's impoverishing charges for
burying people--charges which are made simply because, from the nature
of the service rendered, a man dare not demur to their payment, lest the
fact be talked of around town and he be disgraced. Oh, your Independent
is a consistent, harmless, non-committal sheet. I never saw a paper of
that non-committal name that wasn't. Even the religious papers bearing
it give a decided, whole-souled support to neither the Almighty nor the

The editor of the Independent says he don't know anything about
this undertaker business. If he would go and report a while for some
responsible newspaper, he would learn the knack of finding out things.
Now if he wants to know that the undertaker charged three or four prices
for a coffin (the late Mr. Nash's) upon one occasion, and then refused
to let it go out of his hands, when the funeral was waiting, until
it was paid for, although the estate was good for it, being worth
$20,000--let him go and ask Jack Harris. If he wants any amount of
information, let him inquire of Curry, or Pete Hopkins, or Judge Wright.
Stuff! let him ask any man he meets in the street--the matter is as
universal a topic of conversation here as is the subject of "feet" in
Virginia. But I don't suppose you want to know anything about it. I want
to shed one more unsolicited opinion, which is that your Independent is
the deadest, flattest, [most] worthless thing I know--and I imagine my
cold, unsmiling undertaker has his hungry eye upon it.

Mr. Curry says if the people will come forward and take hold of the
matter, a city cemetery can be prepared and fenced in a week, and at a
trivial cost--a cemetery from which a man can set out for Paradise or
perdition just as respectably as he can from the undertaker's private
grounds at present. Another undertaker can then be invited to come and
take charge of the business. Mr. Curry is right--and no man can move
in the matter with greater effect than himself. Let the reform be


Territorial Enterprise, February 1864



CARSON, February 15

At one o'clock this morning, as Mr. Gray, barkeeper at Bingham's, was
leaving the saloon with his cash box in his hand, two men jumped out
from the shadow of a door, enveloped him in a blanket, and seized the
box. Gray held on to the property until the handle came off, and
then, having no pistol, shouted with good enough effect to attract the
attention of two foot passengers who had. These gentlemen opened a brisk
fire on the retreating highwaymen--sent eight or ten navy balls after
them--caused them to observe, plaintively, "O God!" and drop the
box. All the dogs in town woke up and barked--they always do on
such occasions, but they never bite, and they are opposed to chasing
highwaymen--so the same escaped. Mr. Gray recovered the box, of course,
which contained about one thousand dollars.--MARK.

You have got a mighty responsible delegation here from Storey county.
As Mr. Curler remarked the other day, "When you put your finger on that
delegation, as a general thing, they ain't there." I believe you. In the
face of a notice given last Saturday by Mr. Clagett, of the introduction
of a little bill to remove the Capital to Virginia--in the face of it,
I say, only one member from Storey, out of eight, was present when the
proper time arrived this morning for the introduction of the bill. Mr.
Elliott was present--he always is, for that matter, and always awake.
It has been a good thing for the whole Territory, on more than one
occasion, that he was at his post in this House. One member was
present--seven were absent: Messrs. Gillespie, Heaton, Nelson, Phillips,
Requa, Ungar and Barclay. Several of these gentlemen arrived an hour
after the order for the introduction of bills had been passed. Now if
the people of Storey do not want the Capital, it was the duty of these
members, since they knew the question was before the House, to be on
hand to use their best efforts to kill the bill--and if the people do
want the Capital, then it was the duty of those members to be here and
do what they could toward securing it. Above all things, they had no
business to be absent at such a time. They knew what was going on, and
they knew, moreover, that the fact that they have been pretty regular in
their attendance when toll-roads were to be voted on, will indifferently
palliate the offense of being absent upon this occasion. Last session
Storey offered an immense price for the capital, and nothing in the
world could have kept her from getting it but her own delegation. They
kept her from it, though. Mr. Burke was absent. His vote, at the proper
time, would have moved the Capital--and in the meantime, Mr. Tuttle,
of Douglas, was brought from a sick bed to vote no. I suppose this bill
will be introduced to-morrow (Tuesday) morning, at 10 o'clock--and I
suppose some of the Storey delegation will be absent again. But if you
want the roll-call to-morrow, you can have it. I have made a mistake.
Mr. Gillespie came in this morning before the introduction of
bills, though he was absent at an earlier hour, when the roll was

Territorial Enterprise, February 16, 1864


EDITORS ENTERPRISE: I have just returned from the Capital, where I have
been a Legislative spectator for a while. The strongest conviction which
the experience of my visit forced upon my mind was, that the Capital
ought to be removed from Carson City.

I think you would be of my opinion if you could see with your own eyes,
and hear with your own ears, the doings of the Legislature for a few

My first and best reason for thinking the Capital ought to be removed
is, that while it remains in Carson, the Legislative Assembly is beyond
the pale of newspaper criticism--beyond its restraining influence, and
consequently beyond the jurisdiction of the people, in a manner, since
the people are left in ignorance of what their servants are doing, and
cannot protest against their acts until it is too late. Your reports
of proceedings take up as much room in the city papers as can well
be spared, I suppose, and they are ample enough for all intents and
purposes--or rather, they would be, if the Virginia newspapers could
stay in Carson and criticize these proceedings, and also the members,
editorially, occasionally. A mere skeleton report carries but an
indifferent conception of the transactions of a Legislative body to the
minds of the people. For instance, in the style and after the manner of
one of these synopses: Mr. Stewart gave notice of a bill entitled an Act
to audit the claim of D. J. Gasherie. A day or so afterward, we learn
that according to former notice, Mr. Stewart introduced his bill. You
hear of it again in some committee report. And again, as having been
reported "favorably' by a Committee of the Whole. Next, your report says
Mr. Stewart's bill passed by so many ayes, and so many noes. The work is
done; none of your readers have the slightest idea what Mr. Gasherie's
claim was for, and neither does one of them imagine himself even
remotely interested in knowing anything about it. Yet the chief portion
of your readers, I take it, were very particularly interested in that
bill--because they will have to contribute money from their own pockets
to pay Mr. Gasherie's claim; and they were further interested, on
general principles, because the passage of that bill inflicted a great
wrong upon the Territory. Now, if the Legislature had been in session in
Virginia, under the eyes of the press, instead of those of six or seven
idle lobby members, I doubt if Mr. Stewart would have introduced the
bill; I doubt if the Committee of the Whole would have presumed to
consider it; I know the House and the Council would not have passed it.
When Mr. Elliott rose in his place and objected that this was a bill to
provide payment of a sum out of the Territorial Treasury, amounting to
between $1,800 and $1,900, for the maintenance by Sheriff Gasherie,
of several Ormsby county paupers, the newspapers would have promptly
seconded him in the suggestion that Ormsby county maintain her own
paupers, and pay the bill out of her own pocket. And when Mr. Stewart
acknowledged the justness of the suggestion, but said Ormsby had
bankrupted herself by purchasing a set of fine county buildings, and
must therefore beg this favor at the hands of the people of the whole
Territory, the newspapers would have known all about it, would have
demurred, and the members, with a sense of responsibility thus forced
upon them would have intentionally voted no upon the bill, instead of
voting aye without really knowing, perhaps, what particular measure
was before the House. Moreover, several other outrageous laws, already
passed, could never have been passed in Virginia. Twenty thousand
dollars of the people's money have been asked for to build a seminary in
Carson City and present it to two of her citizens--a private affair, and
no more public in its character than Mr. Chauvel's fencing school here,
and no more deserving of a Territorial appropriation of $20,000. Members
were not wanting to vote for the measure, and to advocate it strongly.
The bill would even have passed, probably, if Messrs. Clagett, and
Elliott had withheld their earnest opposition to it. Yet a bill to
provide for the establishment and maintenance of a public mining
college--a polytechnic school--has excited small interest among the
members. They forget that a mining education can be best acquired here
in the Territory--they forget, also, that the Seminary could offer no
inducements of a similar nature, since our citizens, for many years
to come, will prefer to educate their daughters at the inexpensive and
efficient seminaries of Benicia, San Jose, and Santa Clara. The Seminary
bill was resurrected on Saturday, consolidated with the Polytechnic
bill, $30,000 of public money added, and again brought before the
Legislature. So--$20,000 for a building, and a tax of 1 per cent. on
$30,000,000 of property, for "sundries." A crowd of young gentlemen and
ladies in one building might affect the matter of public morals more
than that of public education, I think. The school is not located, in
the bill, but the Ormsby delegation propose to have it established in
Carson. The Governor is to appoint the trustees, and they are to fix
upon a location, I believe. A mining school in a town fifteen miles from
a mine, would be a beneficial thing, in the abstract. Yet this $50,000
bill may pass, after all. So may the act to purchase Mr. Curry's prison
for $80,000 more--$130,000 to Carson, by way of compensation for the
stream of iniquitous private franchises which has been flowing from one
or two members of her delegation during the entire session. Could these
bills, unmodified, pass, if the people could be thoroughly posted as to
their merits, by the press? I suppose not. Clagett, Brumfield, Elliott,
and two or three other intelligent, industrious and upright members have
saved the credit of the Lower House, and protected the interests of the
people, in nearly every case where it has been done at all--but they
have received no commendation for it; neither have idle members, and
members of easy integrity, been censured. It is because the people have
been left in the dark as to who they ought to praise and who they ought
to blame.

It was urged, last session, that Storey county was disposed to stow
away, in her ravenous maw, everything that came in her way. That
argument lost her the Capital, by one vote--that argument, and one
other, which was a written pledge, on the part of Ormsby county, that
if the Capital were permitted to remain in Carson, halls should be
furnished for the use of the Legislature, free of charge. Storey county
offered to erect capital buildings at her own expense, and move the
officers and other governmental appurtenances within her lines, also at
her own expense. Let Storey county make that proposition to-day, and
it will be accepted. It is Ormsby county, now that is striving with
extraordinary energy, to swallow all public benefits--not Storey.
And Ormsby has failed to redeem her pledge--for she has charged the
Legislature $500 for the use of her Court-house, and after making the
contract, is now dissatisfied because the granting of a greater sum is
refused her.

Four members of one branch of the Legislature support the Specific
Contract bill because it will result to their personal advantage, in
sums varying from $1,000 to $4,000. More than that number have supported
private franchises on personal pecuniary grounds. One member would vote
$20,000 to the Seminary because he would reap an advantage, in dollars
and cents, from the passage of the bill. Inasmuch as these statements
come from the gentlemen referred to, themselves, they are entitled to
full credence. If there could be a merit attached to a wrong motive,
I think that merit might be considered to be the small amount of
intelligence required to keep from telling about it. But all Legislators
are not diplomats. Would it not be well to place the Assembly where the
press, and through the press the people, could look after it?

Mr. Clagett gave notice, on Saturday, of an Act to remove the Capital,
and the bill will probably be formally introduced to-day (Monday). If
the people of Storey county want the seat of government in their midst,
let them signify it promptly and cordially.


Territorial Enterprise, February 1864


CARSON, February 16, 1864

Mayor Arick, Joe Goodman, George Birdsall, Young Harris, and other solid
citizens of Virginia arrived at 3 this morning, having left home at
midnight. They came down to see how the Capital question was going.
Send a lot more down--the more the merrier, and the greater degree
of interest is exhibited. Virginia seldom does things by halves--she
generally comes out strong when she takes hold of a question.--MARK.

* * * * * *

Mr. McDonald moved a recess.

Mr. Clagett hoped the motion would not prevail. He wished to go on
with the regular business--introduction of bills etc. [Sensation among
opponents to the removal of the Capital.]

The motion was lost.

Mr. Clagett moved a call of the House. [Numerous objections.] The motion
was carried--ayes 7, noes 5.

After a moment's delay, Mr. Dixson moved that further proceedings under
the call be dispensed with. Lost.

The absentees, Messrs. Ungar and Curler, were brought forward and
excused, and further proceedings under the call were then dispensed
with. Mr. Phillips moved a recess. Lost-ayes 9, noes 1l.

Mr. Clagett then, pursuant to previous notice, introduced an Act to
locate permanently the Capital of the Territory. [At Virginia--that
city to provide suitable buildings for 5 years at her own cost, before
October 1, 1864--otherwise the Act to be null and void.]

The bill was read in answer to numerous calls.

Mr. Elliott moved that the rules be suspended and the bill engrossed for
a third reading.

Mr. Dixson strenuously objected, and said he couldn't see the object of
rushing this bill through with such indecent haste. [Behold the virtuous
member from Lander--the heart of the same being in Carson.--MARK.]

Mr. Ungar moved to refer the bill to the Storey delegation, with
instructions to report forthwith.

Mr. Phillips moved to amend by substituting the Gold Hill portion of the
Storey delegation.

Mr. Clagett hoped the amendments would be rejected and Mr. Elliott's
motion agreed to, and in his remarks called attention to the fact that
Ormsby county made a written pledge last year that she would furnish
free halls to the Legislature from and after that session--but had
violated her pledge, inasmuch as those same County Commissioners have
charged and received $500 for the halls now being used by the Assembly.

Mr. Dixson did not want things rushed so--he wanted things printed;
he didn't know anything about things, and he wanted time to gain
information. He couldn't see what members meant by springing things in
this way. [Emotion, indicative of the distress which a Lander member
with his heart in Ormsby must naturally feel when he sees an attempt
made to ravish Carson against her will.]

Mr. Dixson sat down weeping, and snuffling, and wiping his nose on
his coat sleeve. [That's a joke of mine--he had a handkerchief with

Mr. Tennant called for the reading of Ormsby's pledge, and Mr. Clagett
got it from Mr. Calder, and read it.

Mr. Stewart made an eloquent appeal in behalf of Ormsby county, and
moved as a substitute to the three or four motions already before the
House, that the bill be referred to a special committee, to consist
of one member from each county, with instructions to report to-morrow
morning. Carried; on a division--ayes 13, noes 4.

The Speaker appointed the committee as follows: Messrs. Clagett,
Stewart, Curler, Dean, Elliott, Gove, McDonald, Tennant and Partridge.

Territorial Enterprise, February 1864



CARSON, February 17

[Dallam, of the Carson Independent, makes a full and unqualified apology
to me this morning--an entire column of it. He says he was not in his
right mind at the time, and hardly ever is. Now, when a man comes out
like that, and owns up with such pleasant candor, I think I ought
to accept his apology. Consequently, we will call it square. It is
flattering to me to observe that Dallam's editorials display great
ability this morning, and that the paper shows an extraordinary degree
of improvement in every respect. A becoming modesty should characterize
us all--it is not for me to say who the credit is due to for the
improvements mentioned. I only say I am glad to see the Independent
looking healthy and vigorous again.--MARK.]


Mr. Stewart presented a petition, signed by most of the responsible
citizens of Ormsby, he said, setting forth that it had just come to a
knowledge of the fact that the Ormsby Commissioners had pledged free
Legislative Halls, and violated that pledge. The petitioners promise
that the rent money shall be at once refunded.

Mr. Stewart also presented a communication from the Secretary of the
Territory acknowledging the receipt of the full amount of the rent money
($500) as paid over to him by the petitioners yesterday.

Mr. Stewart moved the reference of the two documents to the Special
Committee on removal of the Capital.

Mr. McDonald objected that the Committee spoken of were ready now to
report, according to instructions. He moved to lay the papers on the
table, to be taken up at pleasure. Carried.


Mr. Stewart rose to a question of privilege, and spoke at considerable
length upon two editorials in the ENTERPRISE in relation to the removal
of the capital, and a communication upon the same subject in the same
paper, written by one "Looker-On," but whom Mr. Stewart, with ghastly
humor and with relentless and malignant irony, persisted in calling
"Looker On or Hanger-On, I don't know which!" He said the Gasherie bill
for supporting Ormsby county paupers, and which expense the Territory
was asked to pay, only amounted to $877, instead of the large amount
stated by the writer of the article!

[The amount being less, don't you see, the principle is not the same.
Of course. Certainly. Wherefore? Why not? The gentleman's question
of privilege was well taken. As long as the paupers did not cost, or
propose to cost the Territory much, it was impertinent in a newspaper to
mention it. That is the way Mr. Stewart and I look at it.--MARK.]

Mr. Stewart said the balance of the money was cash paid out of Mr.
Gasherie's own pocket in the catching of Territorial criminals, and of
course as anybody would willingly acknowledge, it was the Territory's
place to pay it.

Mr. Clagett, from the Special Committee on the removal of the capital,
presented a majority report favoring the removal.

Mr. Stewart, from the same committee, presented a minority report
recommending the indefinite postponement of the bill.

Mr. Dixson moved the reference of both reports to Committee of the

Mr. McDonald moved to amend by accepting the majority report.

On a division, Mr. Dixson's motion prevailed--13 to 11.

Mr. Clagett called for the reading of the amendments recommended by the
majority report, which was done. [Stipulates that Virginia shall also
furnish Supreme Court rooms and Clerk's offices for five years.--REP.]

Mr. Stewart moved that the Ormsby petition and the communication from
the Secretary of the Territory be referred to Committee of the Whole.

Mr. Barclay moved a re-consideration of the vote by which the bill and
the above documents were referred to Committee of the Whole. Lost by the
following vote:

AYES--Messrs. Barclay, Clagett, Curler, Elliott, Gillespie, Heaton,
McDonald, Nelson, Requa, Tennant, Ungar--11

NOES-Messrs. Brumfield, Calder, Dean, Dixson, Fisher, Gove, Hess,
Hunter, Jones, Phillips, Stewart, Trask, Mr. Speaker--13.

Mr. Elliott moved that the Capital Bill be made the special order for
tomorrow morning at 11 A.M. Lost by the following vote (required a
two-thirds vote to carry):

AYES--Messrs. Barclay, Calder, Clagett, Elliott, Fisher, Gillespie,
Heaton, McDonald, Nelson, Phillips, Requa, Tennant, Ungar and Mr.

NOES--Messrs. Brumfield, Curler, Dean, Dixson, Gove, Hess, Hunter,
Jones, Stewart and Trask--10.

Mr. Brumfield moved to change the time to 12 o'clock Saturday night (the
moment when the Legislature adjourns finally).

Mr. Clagett opposed the motion.

Lost, by the following vote:

AYES--Messrs. Brumfield, Dean, Dixson, Gove, Hess, Hunter, Jones,

NOES--Messrs. Barclay, Calder, Clagett, Curler, Elliott, Fisher,
Gillespie, Heaton, McDonald, Nelson, Phillips, Requa, Tennant, Trask,
Ungar, Mr. Speaker--16.

Mr. Clagett said that in order to stop this frittering away of valuable
time, and in order to get a test vote, he would move that the bill be
considered engrossed and ordered to a third reading. Carried by the
following vote:

AYES--Messrs. Barclay, Brumfield, Calder, Curler, Clagett, Elliott,
Fisher, Gillespie, Gove, Heaton, Hunter, Jones, McDonald, Nelson,
Phillips, Requa, Stewart, Tennant, Trask, Ungar--20.

NOES--Messrs. Dean, Dixson, Hess, Mr. Speaker--4.

Mr. McDonald moved that the bill be read by title only. Carried.


The bill was accordingly read a third time by title, and finally passed,
by the following vote:

AYES--Messrs. Barclay, Calder, Clagett, Curler, Elliott, Gillespie,
Heaton, McDonald, Nelson, Requa, Tennant, Ungar and Mr. Speaker--13.

NOES--Messrs. Brumfield, Dean, Dixson, Fisher, Gove, Hess, Hunter,
Jones, Phillips, Stewart and Trask--11.

Territorial Enterprise, February 1864



CARSON, February 18, 1864


Mr. Calder, according to previous notice, moved a reconsideration of
the vote of yesterday, by which the Capital bill passed. He said his
objections had been removed by the bond submitted by Mr. Stewart.

Mr. Clagett spoke at some length on the subject, in demonstration of the
fact that a bond could not be drawn under such circumstances that would
be valid and binding.

Mr. Brumfield replied rather warmly. In reply to the old argument about
newspaper criticism which could be brought to bear on the Legislature
if the Capital were in Virginia, he was especially bitter on the
Bulletin--said he supposed it would be the favorite--that paper which
was to have been teeming with mining taxation articles to-day, but was
silent--had been purchased again, doubtless. As for the advantage a
community might derive from the presence of the Capital, he couldn't
appreciate the proposition; he didn't want the Capital at Virginia; he
was going there to live, and he didn't want to be bothered with it. As
to buying the Capital with the bond now before the House, neither Ormsby
county nor the Legislature had a right to buy and sell the Capital.

After some further debate, Mr. Gillespie moved the previous question,
which motion prevailed, and discussion was blockaded.

The motion to reconsider was then put and lost [!--REP.] by the
following tie vote [clinching the thing as far as the House is

AYES--Messrs. Brumfield, Dean, Dixson, Fisher, Gove, Hess, Hunter,
Jones, Phillips, Stewart and Trask--1l

NOES--Messrs. Calder, Clagett, Curler, Elliott, Gillespie, Heaton,
McDonald, Nelson, Tennant, Ungar and Mr. Speaker--11.

ABSENT--Mr. Requa--don't know whether he dodged or not.


After the above bully proceedings, and on motion of Mr. McDonald, the
House took a recess until 2:30 P.M.

Thursday Afternoon

The Sergeant-at-Arms brought in Messrs. Dean, Phillips, Tennant, Jones,
Gillespie and Ungar.

Mr. Dean had been talking over family matters. Mr. Phillips had been
engineering a lawsuit. Mr. Tennant had been on committee business.
Messrs. Jones and Gillespie were playing billiards, and Mr. Ungar's
child was sick and he had been playing marbles with her.

Mr. Brumfield moved that Mr. Ungar be granted leave of absence to
continue playing marbles with her. [Laughter.]

A motion to fine Mr. Gillespie a box of cigars for engaging in the
unholy practice of playing billiards, was lost by a tie vote 10 to 10
[notwithstanding that youth has a remittance at Wells Fargo's from his
creditors in Virginia, and which he denied the same.--MARK. ]

The absentees were all excused.

Territorial Enterprise, February 1864


Friday afternoon

CARSON, February 19

Mr. Gillespie moved to reduce the Sergeant-at-Arms' salary to $9 per
day, and strike out that portion which gives the reporters $7 per day.

Mr. Barclay said Mr. Gillespie was not so economical when he presented
his own bill. Mr. Fisher said he ought to remember the verse,

"The mercy I to others show,

That mercy show to me."

Considering the mercy shown him by the House, his opposition comes with
a bad grace from him.

[I feel called upon to observe that Mr. Gillespie got huffy--I would
prefer to call it by a milder term, but I cannot conscientiously do so.
Mr. Gillespie got huffy.--REP.]

After some further debate, Mr. Gillespie explained that there was no
vindictiveness in him--all his motives were dictated from on high--from
on high, sir!--[Tremendous applause.] He went on and made further and
even more aggravatedly absurd remarks. Mr. Barclay said it was customary
to pay the reporters.

Mr. Gillespie's motion in relation to the reporters was lost, by the
following vote:

AYES--Messrs. Clagett, Gillespie, Hess, Hunter, Nelson, Phillips,
Tennant and Trask--8. NOES--Messrs. Barclay, Brumfield, Calder, Curler,
Dean, Dixson, Fisher, Gove, Heaton, Jones, McDonald, Stewart, Ungar and
Mr. Speaker--15.


CARSON, February 19


Mr. Daggett moved that the Capital bill be taken from the table. Mr.
Coddington moved that the bill be indefinitely postponed.

Upon the latter's motion a lengthy discussion ensued. Mr. Daggett
opposing, and Messrs. Curry, Coddington, Sturtevant, Negus and Hall
supporting it.

Mr. Curry presented a communication from certain citizens of Carson
City, binding themselves in the sum of $20,000, to furnish suitable
halls and rooms for the Legislature and Territorial offices free of
cost, provided that the Capital be allowed to remain at Carson City,
while Nevada remained a Territory.

At the close of the debate, the motion to indefinitely postpone was
carried by the following vote:

AYES--Messrs. Coddington, Curry, Negus, Sturtevant, Waldron, Mr.

NOES--Messrs. Daggett, Flagg, Sheldon, Thompson.

Territorial Enterprise, February 1864



CARSON, February 20

The Chaplain not being present, Mr. Fisher suggested that the Virginia
reporter be requested to officiate in his place.

By courtesy of the House, the Virginia reporter was allowed to explain
that he was not on it. [Excused.]

Mr. Phillips moved a call of the House. Carried.

Mr. Gillespie was produced before the bar of the House.

Mr. Brumfield moved, as the heaviest punishment that could be inflicted
upon him, that he be denied the comfort of making a single motion for
the space of an hour. [Laughter.]

Mr. Barclay moved that he be fined $5, and the same be paid to the

Mr. Phillips moved to amend by contributing the money to the Sanitary

The motions were lost.

Messrs. Dixson and Hunter were brought in and fined a box of cigars

The Sergeant-at-Arms said Mr. Clagett was sick in bed.

The Speaker said he must come anyhow.

Mr. Fisher wanted the editor of the Independent sent for. [Laughter.]

The Speaker said he did not think Mr. Clagett needed purging.

Mr. Heaton came forward and was excused.


Mr. Stewart gave notice of an act to permanently locate the Capital
on the South side of Capt. Pray's saw mill on Lake Tahoe, in Douglas
county. [Sensation.]

[But nothing further appears in the record concerning this proposed
bill.--H. N. S.]

A Message was received from the Council asking the return of the
bill for the removal of the Capital. [Another of those grave Council

In view of these portentous symptoms, a call of the House was ordered.

After calling the roll, Mr. Stewart moved that further proceedings under
the call be dispensed with.

The Chair decided the motion carried.

A motion to indefinitely postpone the Council message was lost--ayes 9,
noes 1l.

The motion to comply with the Council's request, carried--ayes 11, noes
8. [Confusion and contention--so to speak. The vote was even taken over
again, with the following result: ]

AYES--Messrs. Barclay, Calder, Clagett, Elliott, Gillespie, Heaton,
McDonald, Nelson, Tennant, Ungar and Mr. Speaker--11.

NOES--Messrs. Brumfield, Curler, Dean, Dixson, Fisher, Gove, Hunter,
Jones, Phillips, Stewart and Trask--11.

Mr. Speaker pro tem.--Mr. Fisher--decided the motion lost.

Mr. Barclay wished to remind our worthy reporter that he didn't dodge
the question this time. [His head is right. I cannot even swear that
he dodged it before, with malice aforethought. Good authority says his
absence before was unavoidable. I believe it. A man who votes as firmly
as Mr. Barclay does for reporters against log-rolling members, would
be apt to stick to his points upon all occasions when the same was
possible. How's that?--REP.]

Saturday Afternoon

Council bill to amend the Act to prohibit gambling. The bill was read.
[The Clerk pronounces the names of all games glibly, and without any
perceptible foreign accent.--REP.]

Saturday Night

[Mr. Stewart drew his everlasting toll-road on the House again. This
has been the old regular result of every five minutes idleness


The institution resolved itself into a respectable body, as expressed in
the above heading.

Mr. Thos. Hannah was elected assistant Clerk, and came forward and took
the oath.

Mr. Clagett introduced a voluminous bill for the relief of certain
citizens of Ormsby county. [It appropriates Curry's Warm Springs--gives
it to these parties as a franchise for a swimming school--and--never
mind, I will cease reporting and listen to the fun.--REP.]

[The Independent of this morning touched upon Mr. Clagett's seeming
repugnance to the use of the comb. On this hint, Mr. Barclay and
other members of the House, had procured a prodigious wooden comb and
conferred upon your servant the honor of presenting it.--REP.]

Mr. Mark Twain inquired if testimonials were still in order, and
received an affirmative reply from the Speaker. He arose in his place
and addressed Mr. Clagett as follows--[Never mind publishing it again.
I had no speech prepared, and therefore I was obliged to infringe upon
etiquette to some extent--that is to say, I had to take Mr. Fisher's
speech (apologizing to that gentleman, of course) and read it to Mr.
Clagett, merely saying "comb" where the word "cane" occurred, and
"legislator" in the place of "parliamentarian," and slinging in a few
"as it weres," and "so to speaks," etc., to add grace and vigor to
the composition. I think I must be a pretty good reader--the audience
appeared to admire Fisher's speech more when I delivered it than they
did when he delivered it himself.]

Mr. Clagett received the testimonial, and replied felicitously--as he is
wont to do. He concluded by saying it was a college practice to give the
ugliest student a penknife, with instructions to give it to a man uglier
than himself, if he should ever find one. He liked the idea--he thought
it his duty to confer the comb upon some person whose hair needed its
offices more than his own. [He passed it over to Mr. Hunter, of Washoe.
Applause and Laughter.]

Baskets of wine were now brought in, with the compliments of Theodore
Winters, President of the Washoe Agricultural, Mining and Mechanical
Society, and the House rested awhile to drink health and prosperity to
that gentleman.

Shortly after, other baskets were produced, per order, and at the
expense of the Speaker, and the operation of drinking was further


Mr. Hunter, by request, came forward and read a long, solemn,
magnificent, hifalutin memorial about the mines, religion, chemistry,
social etiquette, agriculture, and other matter proper to a document of
this kind. The House applauded tempestuously--and laughed. They laughed
immoderately. Why they did it, I cannot imagine, for I never heard an
essay like this one before in my life. Now that is honest. Mr. Hunter
finally got angry and refused to finish reading the discourse, but when
it was explained to him that only lobby members had been laughing all
the time he was satisfied of course. I would like to hear the memorial
read in Virginia.

Mr. Stewart, from the special Committee, reported that the Governor had
no further communications to make.

Mr. Elliott offered a resolution that the House adjourn sine die at
11:30 P.M.

Mr. McDonald, true to his old regular motion [to adjourn] moved to amend
by making the hour 12 P.M. The motion prevailed.

And from this time until midnight, fun ran high.

At 12 P.M. Mr. Speaker declared the House adjourned sine die.

The members went up to the Governor's and had a good time for an hour.
The old man is as competent as any that walks, to make an evening
pass pleasantly. Wine, music, anecdotes and sentiments composed the

At 2 A.M. the exhilarated members closed the frolic by serenading the
Speaker, at the White House.

Territorial Enterprise, April 20, 1864


Our time-honored confrere, Dan, met with a disastrous accident,
yesterday, while returning from American City on a vicious Spanish
horse, the result of which accident is that at the present writing he is
confined to his bed and suffering great bodily pain. He was coming down
the road at the rate of a hundred miles an hour (as stated in his
will, which he made shortly after the accident,) and on turning a sharp
corner, he suddenly hove in sight of a horse standing square across the
channel; he signaled for the starboard, and put his helm down instantly,
but too late, after all; he was swinging to port, and before he could
straighten down, he swept like an avalanche against the transom of the
strange craft; his larboard knee coming in contact with the rudder-post
of the adversary, Dan was wrenched from his saddle and thrown some three
hundred yards (according to his own statement, made in his will, above
mentioned,) alighting upon solid ground, and bursting himself open from
the chin to the pit of the stomach. His head was also caved in out of
sight, and his hat was afterwards extracted in a bloody and damaged
condition from between his lungs; he must have bounced end-for-end after
he struck first, because it is evident he received a concussion from
the rear that broke his heart; one of his legs was jammed up in his body
nearly to his throat, and the other so torn and mutilated that it pulled
out when they attempted to lift him into the hearse which we had sent
to the scene of the disaster, under the general impression that he
might need it; both arms were indiscriminately broken up until they were
jointed like a bamboo; the back was considerably fractured and bent
into the shape of a rail fence. Aside from these injuries, however, he
sustained no other damage. They brought some of him home in the hearse
and the balance on a dray. His first remark showed that the powers of
his great mind had not been impaired by the accident, nor his profound
judgment destroyed--he said he wouldn't have cared a d--n if it had been
anybody but himself. He then made his will, after which he set to
work with that earnestness and singleness of purpose which have always
distinguished him, to abuse the assemblage of anxious hash house
proprietors who had called on business, and to repudiate their bills
with his customary promptness and impartiality. Dan may have exaggerated
the above details in some respects, but he charged us to report
them thus, and it is a source of genuine pleasure to us to have the
opportunity of doing it. Our noble old friend is recovering fast, and
what is left of him will be around the Brewery again to-day, just as

Territorial Enterprise, April 1864


[by Dan De Quille]

Some three days since, in returning to this city from American Flat, we
had the misfortune to be thrown from a fiery untamed steed of Spanish
extraction--a very strong extract, too. Our knee was sprained by our
fall and we were for a day or two confined to our room--of course
knowing little of what was going on in the great world outside. Mark
Twain, our confrere and room-mate, a man in whom we trusted, was our
only visitor during our seclusion. We saw some actions of his that
almost caused us to suspect him of contemplating treachery towards us,
but it was not until we regained in some degree the use of our maimed
limb that we discovered the full extent--the infamousness of this
wretch's treasonable and inhuman plottings. He wrote such an account of
our accident as would lead the public to believe that we were injured
beyond all hope of recovery. The next day he tied a small piece of
second-hand crape about his hat, and putting on a lugubrious look,
went to the Probate Court, and getting down on his knees commenced
praying--it was the first time he ever prayed for anything or to
anybody--for letters of administration on our estate. Before going
to the Court to pray he had stuffed the principal part of our
estate--consisting of numerous shares in the Pewterinctum--into his vest
pocket; also had secured our tooth-brush and had been using it a whole
day. He had on our only clean shirt and best socks, also was sporting
our cane and smoking our meerschaum. But what most showed his
heartlessness and utter depravity was the disposition he made of our
boots and coat. When we missed these we applied to Marshall Cooke. The
Marshall said he thought he could find them for us. He went on to say
that for sometime past he had noticed the existence of a suspicious
intimacy between Twain and a nigger saloon keeper, who had a dead-fall
on North B street. Proceeding to this palace he found that he was
correct in his conjecture. Twain had taken our boots and coat to the
darkey, and traded them off for a bottle of vile whiskey, with which he
got drunk; and when the police were about to snatch him for drunkenness,
he commenced blubbering, saying that he was "overcome for the untimely
death of poor Dan." By this dodge he escaped the lock-up, but if he
does not shortly give up our Pewtertinctum stock--which is of fabulous
vale--shell out our tooth-brush and take off our socks and best shirt,
he will not so easily escape the Territorial prison.

P. S.--We have just learned that he stole the crape he tied about his
hat from the door knob of Three's engine house, South B street.

Territorial Enterprise, April 1864


[by Dan DeQuille]

We may have said some harsh things of Mark Twain, but now we take them
all back. We feel like weeping for him--yes, we would fall on his breast
and mingle our tears with his'n. But that manly shirt front of his air
now a bloody one, and his nose is swollen to such an extent that to fall
on his breast would be an utter impossibility.

Yesterday, he brought back all our things and promised us that he
intended hereafter to lead a virtuous life. This was in the forenoon;
in the afternoon he commenced the career of virtue he had marked out for
himself and took a first lesson in boxing. Once he had the big gloves
on, he imagined that he weighed a ton and could whip his weight in
Greek-fire. He waded into a professor of the "manly art" like one of
Howlan's rotary batteries, and the professor, in a playful way he has,
when he wants to take the conceit out of forward pupils, let one fly
straight out from the shoulder and "busted" Mr. Twain in the "snoot,"
sending him reeling--not exactly to grass, but across a bench--with two
bountiful streams of "claret" spouting from his nostrils. At first his
nose was smashed out till it covered nearly the whole of his face and
then looked like a large piece of tripe, but it was finally scraped into
some resemblance of a nose, when he rushed away for surgical advice.
Pools of gore covered the floor of the Club Room where he fought, and
he left a bloody trail for half a mile through the city. It is estimated
that he lost several hogsheads of blood in all. He procured a lot of
sugar of lead and other cooling lotions and spent the balance of the day
in applying them with towels and sponges.

After dark, he ventured forth with his nose swollen to the size of
several junk bottles--a vast, inflammed and pulpy old snoot--to get
advice about having it amputated. None of his friends recognize him
now, and he spends his time in solitude, contemplating his ponderous
vermillion smeller in a two-bit mirror, which he bought for that
purpose. We cannot comfort him, for we know his nose will never be a
nose again. It always was somewhat lopsided; now it is a perfect lump
of blubber. Since the above was in type, the doctors have decided to
amputate poor Mark Twain's smeller. A new one is to be made for him of a
quarter of veal.

Territorial Enterprise, April 28, 1864


Carson City, April 25

EDS. ENTERPRISE: The road from Virginia to Carson--as traveled by
Wilson's coaches--is in excellent condition, the same being neither
muddy nor very dusty. The stages do not even stop to rest on the chalk

We came by the penitentiary, but I did not consider it worth while to
stop at the institution more than a few minutes, inasmuch as I had
been in it before. Bob Howland, the Warden, was at his post, and I had
sufficient confidence in him to leave him there. He is probably there
yet. N.B.--When you journey in this direction, stop at the penitentiary
and examine the native silver fish on exhibition there in the aquarium.
They are caught in the Warm Springs. They are very like gold-fish, only
they are longer, and not so wide, and are white instead of yellow, and
also differ from gold-fish to some extent in the respect that they do
not resemble them. This description may sound a little incoherent, but
then I have set it down just as I got it from Bob Howland, in whom I
have every confidence. Mr. Curry is erecting a handsome stone edifice at
the Warm Springs, to be used as a hotel.

I heard in the stage, and also since I arrived here, that an organized
effort will shortly be made to rescue Jaynes, the murderer, from the
Storey county jail. Whether it be true or not, it will not be amiss to
put the officers on their guard with a hint.

The Supreme Court began its session here to-day, and adjourned over
until to-morrow, after hearing arguments for a new trial of Johnson for
killing Horace Smith. The ground upon which a new trial is sought, is
that some testimony was admitted upon the first trial in the District
Court which should have been ruled out. I have spoken with District
Attorney Corson on the subject, and he thinks the movement for a
rehearing will not succeed. From present appearances, I think Alderman
Earl will hold his seat for some time yet (if the sacred ambition to
sit in a high place in spite of law and gospel to the contrary shall
continue to animate him), as it has already been decided to submit his
case, through the District and City Attorneys, to the District Court,
and the long session now anticipated for the Supreme Court, will
doubtless delay his trial for some time. It would have been better,
wouldn't it, for the Council to have declared his seat vacant, and
allowed him to take legal steps for its restitution himself?

Governor Nye has not yet returned. It is said he will start back to
Carson to-morrow.

Acting-Governor Clemens made a requisition upon H. F. Rice, Esq., a day
or two since, for offices for the Secretary of the Territory, rent-free,
in accordance with the contract entered into by certain citizens during
the late session of the Legislature when the subject of removing the
Capital to Virginia was agitated. The requisition was duly honored, and
in the course of the week, handsome offices will be fitted up in the
second story of the north end of the county buildings for the use of the
Secretary and his clerks.

Mr. Colburn, or Coleman, or whatever his name is--the young man with
a penchant for trying unique experiments, and who was accused of
committing a rape on an infant here three years ago--is in trouble
again. A young girl who alleges that he seduced her in California some
time ago, is over here suing him for damages in the Probate Court.

Your carrier here neglects some of his subscribers as often as two or
three times a week, sometimes, or else his papers are stolen after he
leaves them. Let the matter be attended to--the people hunger after
Dan's intellectual rubbish.

The ladies gave a festival here last Friday for the benefit of my
chronic brick church. The net proceeds amounted to upwards of $500,
and will be applied to furnishing the edifice, which is still in a
high state of preservation, and is gradually but surely becoming really
ornamental. That is the church for the benefit of which I delivered
a Governor's message once, and consequently I still take a religious
interest in its welfare. I could sling a strong prayer for its
prosperity, occasionally, if I thought it would do any good. However,
perhaps it wouldn't--it would certainly be taking chances anyhow.

The ladies are making extraordinary preparations for a grand fancy-dress
ball, to come off in the county buildings here on the 5th of May, for
the benefit of the great St. Louis Sanitary Fair. The most pecuniary
results are anticipated from it, and I imagine, from the interest that
is being taken in the matter, the ladies of Gold Hill had better be
looking to their laurels, lest the fame of their recent brilliant effort
in the Sanitary line be dimmed somewhat by the financial achievements of
this forthcoming ball.

The infernal telegraph monopoly saddled upon this Territory by the last
Legislature, in the passage of that infamous special Humboldt telegraph
bill, and afterwards clinched by a still more rascally enactment on the
same occasion, is bearing its fruits, and the people here, as well as
at Virginia, are beginning to wince under illegal and exorbitant
telegraphic charges. They double the tariff allowed by law, and a man
has to submit to the imposition, because he cannot afford the time
and trouble of going to law for a trifle of five or ten dollars,
notwithstanding the comfort and satisfaction he would derive from
worrying the monopolists. The moment that law received the Governor's
signature last winter, you will recollect the Telegraph Company doubled
their prices for dispatches to and from San Francisco. And that is not
the worst they have done, if common report be true. This common report
says the telegraph is used by its owners to aid them in stock gambling
schemes. I recollect that on the night the jury went out in the Savage
and North Potosi case and failed to agree, our San Francisco dispatch
failed to come to hand, and the reason assigned was that a dispatch of
3,000 words was being sent from Virginia to San Francisco and the line
could not be used for other messages. Now that Telegraph Company may
have made money by trading in North Potosi on that occasion, but who is
young enough to believe they ever got two dollars and a half for that
voluminous imaginary dispatch? That telegraph is a humbug. The
Company are allowed to charge $3.50 for the first ten words across
the continent, and must submit to a considerable deduction on longer
dispatches--but they take the liberty of increasing that rate some
thirty-five per cent, and people have to put up with it. Colonel
Cradlebaugh tells me that last year, when he was a delegate at
Washington from this Territory, they always charged him more for
dispatches sent here than if they went through to California. The
Government pays the Overland Telegraph Company $40,000 a year, with the
understanding that Government messages are to pass over the lines free
of charge--but I know of several dispatches of this character that were
not permitted to leave the telegraph offices until they were paid for.
It is properly the District Attorney's business to look after these
telegraphic speculators, and that officer ought to be reminded of the
fact. The next Grand Jury here will endeavor to make it interesting to
the Telegraph Company.

Gillespie's monument--the ratty old Agricultural Fair shanty--still
rears its ghastly form in the plaza, and serves to remind me of that
statesman's extraordinary career in the House of Representatives. It
consisted in saving to his country the usual, but extravagant sum of
eight or ten dollars a day extra pay to Legislative reporters, and
in making a speech in favor of the Sierra Seminary bill which had the
effect of killing that really worthy measure. All through the session
Gillespie was mighty handy about smashing the life out of any little
incipient law that he chose to befriend, with one of his calamitous
speeches. His vote was patent, too; his "nay" invariably passed a bill,
and his "aye" was the deadest thing! [My language may be unrefined, but
it has the virtue of being uncommonly strong.] But that monument in
the plaza looks as hungry as Gillespie does himself, and much more
unsightly, and I look for one of them to eat the other some day, if they
ever get close enough together.

I depart for Silver Mountain in the Esmeralda stage at 7 o'clock
to-morrow morning. It is the early bird that catches the worm, but I
would not get up at that time in the morning for a thousand worms, if I
were not obliged to.


Territorial Enterprise, April 28 or 30, 1864

[fragment of original]


The idea of a plebeian like Dan supposing he could ever ride a horse!
He! why, even the cats and the chickens laughed when they saw him go
by. Of course, he would be thrown off. Of course, any well-bred horse
wouldn't let a common, underbred person like Dan stay on his back!
When they gathered him up he was just a bag of scraps, but they put him
together, and you'll find him at his old place in the Enterprise office
next week, still laboring under the delusion that he's a newspaper man.

Territorial Enterprise, May 1--May 15, 1864



"DEAR SIR:--My object in writing to you is to have you give me a full
history of Nevada: What is the character of its climate? What are the
productions of the earth? Is it healthy? What diseases do they die of
mostly? Do you think it would be advisable for a man who can make a
living in Missouri to emigrate to that part of the country? There
are several of us who would emigrate there in the spring if we could
ascertain to a certainty that it is a much better country than this. I
suppose you know Joel H. Smith? He used to live here; he lives in Nevada
now; they say he owns considerable in a mine there. Hoping to hear from
you soon, etc., I remain yours, truly,

WILLIAM _____.

DEAREST WILLIAM:--Pardon my familiarity--but that name touchingly
reminds me of the loved and lost, whose name was similar. I have taken
the contract to answer your letter, and although we are now strangers,
I feel we shall cease to be so if we ever become acquainted with each
other. The thought is worthy of attention, William. I will now respond
to your several propositions in the order in which you have fulminated

Your object in writing is to have me give you a full history of Nevada.
The flattering confidence you repose in me, William, is only equalled
by the modesty of your request. I could detail the history of Nevada
in five hundred pages octavo, but as you have never done me any harm, I
will spare you, though it will be apparent to everybody that I would be
justified in taking advantage of you if I were a mind to do it. However,
I will condense. Nevada was discovered many years ago by the Mormons,
and was called Carson county. It only became Nevada in 1861, by act of
Congress. There is a popular tradition that God Almighty created it; but
when you come to see it, William, you will think differently. Do not let
that discourage you, though. The country looks something like a singed
cat, owing to the scarcity of shrubbery, and also resembles that animal
in the respect that it has more merits than its personal appearance
would seem to indicate. The Grosch brothers found the first silver lead
here in 1857. They also founded Silver City, I believe. (Observe the
subtle joke, William.) But the "history" of Nevada which you demand,
properly begins with the discovery of the Comstock lead, which event
happened nearly five years ago. The opinion now prevailing in the East
that the Comstock is on the Gould & Curry is erroneous; on the contrary,
the Gould & Curry is on the Comstock. Please make the correction,
William. Signify to your friends, also, that all the mines here do
not pay dividends as yet; you may make this statement with the utmost
unyielding inflexibility--it will not be contradicted from this quarter.
The population of this Territory is about 35,000, one half of which
number reside in the united cities of Virginia and Gold Hill. However, I
will discontinue this history for the present, lest I get you too deeply
interested in this distant land and cause you to neglect your family or
your religion. But I will address you again upon the subject next year.
In the meantime, allow me to answer your inquiry as to the character of
our climate.

It has no character to speak of, William, and alas! in this respect it
resembles many, ah, too many chambermaids in this wretched, wretched
world. Sometimes we have the seasons in their regular order, and then
again we have winter all the summer and summer all winter. Consequently,
we have never yet come across an almanac that would just exactly fit
this latitude. It is mighty regular about not raining, though, William.
It will start in here in November and rain about four, and sometimes
as much as seven days on a stretch; after that, you may loan out your
umbrella for twelve months, with the serene confidence which a Christian
feels in four aces. Sometimes the winter begins in November and winds up
in June; and sometimes there is a bare suspicion of winter in March and
April, and summer all the balance of the year. But as a general thing,
William, the climate is good, what there is of it.

What are the productions of the earth? You mean in Nevada, of course.
On our ranches here, anything can be raised that can be produced on
the fertile fields of Missouri. But ranches are very scattering--as
scattering, perhaps, as lawyers in heaven. Nevada, for the most part,
is a barren waste of sand, embellished with melancholy sage-brush, and
fenced in with snow clad mountains. But these ghastly features were
the salvation of the land, William, for no rightly constituted American
would have ever come here if the place had been easy of access, and none
of our pioneers would have staid after they got here if they had not
felt satisfied that they could not find a smaller chance for making a
living anywhere else. Such is man, William, as he crops out in America.

"Is it healthy?" Yes, I think it is as healthy here as it is in any part
of the West. But never permit a question of that kind to vegetate in
your brain, William, because as long as providence has an eye on you,
you will not be likely to die until your time comes.

"What diseases do they die of mostly?" Well, they used to die of
conical balls and cold steel, mostly, but here lately erysipelas and the
intoxicating bowl have got the bulge on those things, as was very
justly remarked by Mr. Rising last Sunday. I will observe, for your
information, William, that Mr. Rising is our Episcopal minister, and
has done as much as any man among us to redeem this community from its
pristine state of semi-barbarism. We are afflicted with all the diseases
incident to the same latitude in the States, I believe, with one or two
added and half a dozen subtracted on account of our superior altitude.
However, the doctors are about as successful here, both in killing and
curing, as they are anywhere.

Now, as to whether it would be advisable for a man who can make a living
in Missouri to emigrate to Nevada, I confess I am somewhat mixed. If you
are not content in your present condition, it naturally follows that you
would be entirely satisfied if you could make either more or less than a
living. You would exult in the cheerful exhilaration always produced by
a change. Well, you can find your opportunity here, where, if you retain
your health, and are sober and industrious, you will inevitably make
more than a living, and if you don't you won't. You can rely upon this
statement, William. It contemplates any line of business except the
selling of tracts. You cannot sell tracts here, William; the people take
no interest in tracts; the very best efforts in the tract line--even
with pictures on them--have met with no encouragement here. Besides, the
newspapers have been interfering; a man gets his regular text or so
from the Scriptures in his paper, along with the stock sales and the war
news, every day, now. If you are in the tract business, William, take no
chances on Washoe; but you can succeed at anything else here.

"I suppose you know Joel H. Smith?" Well--the fact is--I believe I
don't. Now isn't that singular? Isn't it very singular? And he owns
"considerable" in a mine here, too. Happy man. Actually owns in a
mine here in Nevada Territory, and I never even heard of him.
Strange--strange--do you know, William, it is the strangest thing that
ever happened to me? And then he not only owns in a mine, but owns
"consider able;" that is the strangest part about it--how a man could
own considerable in a mine in Washoe and I not know anything about it.
He is a lucky dog, though. But I strongly suspect that you have made
a mistake in the name; I am confident you have; you mean John Smith--I
know you do; I know it from the fact that he owns considerable in a mine
here, because I sold him the property at a ruinous sacrifice on the very
day he arrived here from over the plains. That man will be rich one of
these days. I am just as well satisfied of it as I am of any precisely
similar instance of the kind that has come under my notice. I said as
much to him yesterday, and he said he was satisfied of it, also. But he
did not say it with that air of triumphant exultation which a heart
like mine so delights to behold in one to whom I have endeavored to be a
benefactor in a small way. He looked pensive a while, but, finally, says
he, "Do you know, I think I'd a been a rich man long ago if they'd ever
found the d--d ledge?" That was my idea about it. I always thought, and
I still think, that if they ever do find that ledge, his chances will be
better than they are now. I guess Smith will be all right one of these
centuries, if he keeps up his assessments--he is a young man yet. Now,
William, I have taken a liking to you, and I would like to sell you
"considerable" in a mine in Washoe. I think I could get you a commanding
interest in the "Union," Gold Hill, on easy terms. It is just the
same as the "Yellow Jacket," which is one of the richest mines in the
Territory. The title was in dispute between the two companies some two
years ago, but that is all settled now. Let me hear from you on the
subject. Greenbacks at par is as good a thing as I want. But seriously,
William, don't you ever invest in a mining stock which you don't know
anything about; beware of John Smith's experience.

You hope to hear from me soon? Very good. I shall also hope to hear
from you soon, about that little matter above referred to. Now, William,
ponder this epistle well; never mind the sarcasm, here and there, and
the nonsense, but reflect upon the plain facts set forth, because they
are facts, and are meant to be so understood and believed.

Remember me affectionately to your friends and relations, and especially
to your venerable grand-mother, with whom I have not the pleasure to be
acquainted--but that is of no consequence, you know. I have been in your
town many a time, and all the towns of the neighboring counties--the
hotel keepers will recollect me vividly. Remember me to them--I bear
them no animosity.

Yours, affectionately,


Territorial Enterprise, May 24, 1864


[ I ]


Saturday, May 21, 1864

JAMES LAIRD, ESQ.--Sir: In your paper of the present date appeared two
anonymous articles, in which a series of insults were leveled at the
writer of an editorial in Thursday's ENTERPRISE, headed "How is it?--How
it is." I wrote that editorial.

Some time since it was stated in the Virginia Union that its proprietors
were alone responsible for all articles published in its columns. You
being the proper person, by seniority, to apply to in cases of this
kind, I demand of you a public retraction of the insulting articles I
have mentioned, or satisfaction. I require an immediate answer to
this note. The bearer of this--Mr. Stephen Gillis--will receive any
communication you may see fit to make.


[ II ]


VIRGINIA, May 21, 1864

SAMUEL CLEMENS, ESQ.--Mr. James Laird has just handed me your note
of this date. Permit me to say that I am the author of the Article
appearing in this morning's Union. I am responsible for it. I have
nothing to retract. Respectfully,


[ III ]


Saturday Evening, May 21, 1864

JAMES LAIRD, ESQ.--Sir:--I wrote you a note this afternoon demanding
a published retraction of insults that appeared in two Articles in
the Union of this morning--or satisfaction. I have since received what
purports to be a reply, written by a person who signs himself "J. W.
Wilmington," in which he assumes the authorship and responsibility
of one of said infamous articles. Mr. Wilmington is a person entirely
unknown to me in the matter, and has nothing to do with it. In the
columns of your paper you have declared your own responsibility for all
articles appearing in it, and any farther attempt to make a catspaw
of any other individual and thus shirk a responsibility that you had
previously assumed will show that you are a cowardly sneak. I now
peremptorily demand of you the satisfaction due to a gentleman--without


[ IV ]


VIRGINIA, Saturday evening, May 21st, 1864

SAM'L. CLEMENS, ESQ:--Your note of this evening is received. To the
first portion of it I will briefly reply, that Mr. J. W. Wilmington, the
avowed author of the article to which you object, is a gentleman now in
the employ of the Union office. He formerly was one of the proprietors
of the Cincinnati Enquirer. He was Captain of a Company in the Sixth
Ohio Regiment, and fought at Shiloh. His responsibility and character
can be vouched for to your abundant satisfaction.

For all editorials appearing in the Union, the proprietors are
personally responsible; for communications, they hold themselves ready,
when properly called upon, either to give the name and address of the
author, or failing that, to be themselves responsible.

The editorial in the ENTERPRISE headed "How is it?" out of which this
controversy grew, was an attack made upon the printers of the Union. It
was replied to by a Union printer, and a representative of the printers,
who in a communication denounced the writer of that article as a liar, a
poltroon and a puppy. You announce yourself as the writer of the article
which provoked this communication, and demand "satisfaction"--which
satisfaction the writer informs you, over his own signature, he is quite
ready to afford. I have no right, under the rulings of the code you have
invoked, to step in and assume Mr. Wilmington's position, nor would
he allow me to do so. You demand of me, in your last letter, the
satisfaction due to a gentleman, and couple the demand with offensive
remarks. When you have earned the right to the title by complying with
the usual custom, I shall be most happy to afford you any satisfaction
you desire at any time and in any place. In short, Mr. Wilmington has a
prior claim upon your attention. When he is through with you, I shall be
at your service. If you decline to meet him after challenging him, you
will prove yourself to be what he has charged you with being: "a liar, a
poltroon and a puppy," and as such, can not of course be entitled to the
consideration of a gentleman.



[ V ]


May 21,1864--9 o'clock, P.M.

JAMES L. LAIRD, ESQ.--Sir: Your reply to my last note in which I
peremptorily demanded satisfaction of you, without alternative--is just
received, and to my utter astonishment you still endeavor to shield your
craven carcass behind the person of an individual who in spite of your
introduction is entirely unknown to me, and upon whose shoulders you
cannot throw the whole responsibility. You acknowledge and reaffirm
in this note that "For all editorials appearing in the Union, the
proprietors are personally responsible." Now, sir, had there appeared
no editorial on the subject endorsing and reiterating the slanderous and
disgraceful insults heaped upon me in the "communication," I would have
simply called upon you and demanded the name of its author, and upon
your answer would have depended my farther action. But the "Editorial"
alluded to was equally vile and slanderous as the "communication," and
being an "Editorial" would naturally have more weight in the minds
of readers. It was the following undignified and abominably insulting
slander appearing in your "Editorial" headed "The 'How is it' issue,"
that occasioned my sending you first an alternative and then a
peremptory challenge:

"Never before in a long period of newspaper intercourse--never before
in any contact with a contemporary, however unprincipled he might have
been, have we found an opponent in statement or in discussion, who had
no gentlemanly sense of professional propriety, who conveyed in every
word, and in every purpose of all his words, such a groveling disregard
for truth, decency and courtesy as to seem to court the distinction,
only, of being understood as a vulgar liar. Meeting one who prefers
falsehood; whose instincts are all toward falsehood; whose thought is
falsification; whose aim is vilification through insincere professions
of honesty; one whose only merit is thus described, and who evidently
desires to be thus known, the obstacles presented are entirely
insurmountable, and whoever would touch them fully, should expect to be
abominably defiled."--Union, May 21

You assume in your last note, that I "have challenged Mr. Wilmington,"
and that he has informed me "over his own signature," that he is quite
ready to afford me "satisfaction." Both assumptions are utterly false.
I have twice challenged you, and you have twice attempted to shirk
the responsibility. Mr. W's note could not possibly be an answer to my
demand of satisfaction from you; and besides, his note simply avowed
authorship of a certain "communication" that appeared simultaneously
with your libelous "editorial," and states that its author had "nothing
to retract." For your gratification, however, I will remark that
Mr. Wilmington's case will be attended to in due time by a distant
acquaintance of his who is not willing to see him suffer in obscurity.
In the meantime, if you do not wish yourself posted as a coward, you
will at once accept my peremptory challenge, which I now reiterate.


[ VI ]


VIRGINIA, May 21, 1864

J. W. WILMINGTON--Sir: You are, perhaps, far from those who are wont to
advise and care for you, else you would see the policy of minding
your own business and letting that of other people alone. Under these
circumstances, therefore, I take the liberty of suggesting that you are
getting out of your sphere. A contemptible ass and coward like yourself
should only meddle in the affairs of gentlemen when called upon to do
so. I approve and endorse the course of my principal in this matter,
and if your sensitive disposition is aroused by any proceeding of his,
I have only to say that I can be found at the ENTERPRISE office, and
always at your service.


[To the above, Mr. Wilmington gave a verbal reply to Mr. Millard--the
gentleman through whom the note was conveyed to him--stating that he had
no quarrel with Mr. Gillis; that he had written his communication only
in defense of the craft, and did not desire a quarrel with a member of
that craft; he showed Mr. G's note to Mr. Millard, who read it, but made
no comments upon it.]

[ VII ]


Monday Morning, May 23, 1864

SAMUEL CLEMENS, ESQ.:--In reply to your lengthy communication, I have
only to say that in your note opening this correspondence, you demanded
satisfaction for a communication in the Union which branded the writer
of an article in the ENTERPRISE as a liar, a poltroon and a puppy. You
declare yourself to be the writer of the ENTERPRISE article, and
the avowed author of the Union communication stands ready to afford
satisfaction. Any attempt to evade a meeting with him and force one upon
me will utterly fail, as I have no right under the rulings of the code,
to meet or hold any communication with you in this connection. The
threat of being posted as a coward cannot have the slightest effect
upon the position I have assumed in the matter. If you think this
correspondence reflects credit upon you, I advise you by all means to
publish it; in the meantime you must excuse me from receiving any more
long epistles from you. JAMES L. LAIRD

I denounce Mr. Laird as an unmitigated liar, because he says I published
an editorial in which I attacked the printers employed on the Union,
whereas there is nothing in that editorial which can be so construed.
Moreover, he is a liar on general principles, and from natural instinct.
I denounce him as an abject coward, because it has been stated in his
paper that its proprietors are responsible for all articles appearing
in its columns, yet he backs down from that position; because he
acknowledges the "code," but will not live up to it; because he says
himself that he is responsible for all "editorials," and then backs down
from that also; and because he insults me in his note marked "IV,"
and yet refuses to fight me. Finally, he is a fool, because he cannot
understand that a publisher is bound to stand responsible for any and
all articles printed by him, whether he wants to do it or not.


Territorial Enterprise, May 24, 1864


We published a rumor, the other day, that the moneys collected at the
Carson Fancy Dress Ball were to be diverted from the Sanitary Fund and
sent forward to aid a "miscegenation" or some other sort of Society in
the East. We also stated that the rumor was a hoax. And it was--we were
perfectly right. However, four ladies are offended. We cannot quarrel
with ladies--the very thought of such a thing is repulsive; neither can
we consent to offend them even unwittingly--without being sorry for the
misfortune, and seeking their forgiveness, which is a kindness we hope
they will not refuse. We intended no harm, as they would understand
easily enough if they knew the history of this offense of ours, but
we must suppress that history, since it would rather be amusing than
otherwise, and the amusement would be at our expense. We have no love
for that kind of amusement--and the same trait belongs to human nature
generally. One lady complained that we should at least have answered the
note they sent us. It is true. There is small excuse for our neglect of
a common politeness like that, yet we venture to apologize for it, and
will still hope for pardon, just the same. We have noticed one thing in
this whole business--and also in many an instance which has gone before
it--and that is, that we resemble the majority of our species in the
respect that we are very apt to get entirely in the wrong, even when
there is no seeming necessity for it; but to offset this vice, we claim
one of the virtues of our species, which is that we are ready to repair
such wrongs when we discover them.

Territorial Enterprise, June 17-23, 1864


To a Christian who has toiled months and months in Washoe; whose hair
bristles from a bed of sand, and whose soul is caked with a cement
of alkali dust; whose nostrils know no perfume but the rank odor of
sage-brush--and whose eyes know no landscape but barren mountains and
desolate plains; where the winds blow, and the sun blisters, and
the broken spirit of the contrite heart finds joy and peace only in
Limburger cheese and lager beer--unto such a Christian, verily the
Occidental Hotel is Heaven on the half shell. He may even secretly
consider it to be Heaven on the entire shell, but his religion teaches a
sound Washoe Christian that it would be sacrilege to say it.

Here you are expected to breakfast on salmon, fried oysters and other
substantials from 6 till half-past 12; you are required to lunch on
cold fowl and so forth, from half-past 12 until 3; you are obliged to
skirmish through a dinner comprising such edibles as the world produces,
and keep it up, from 3 until half-past 7; you are then compelled to lay
siege to the tea-table from half-past 7 until 9 o'clock, at which hour,
if you refuse to move upon the supper works and destroy oysters gotten
up in all kinds of seductive styles until 12 o'clock, the landlord will
certainly be offended, and you might as well move your trunk to some
other establishment. [It is a pleasure to me to observe, incidentally,
that I am on good terms with the landlord yet.]

Why don't you send Dan down into the Gould & Curry mine, to see whether
it has petered out or not, and if so, when it will be likely to peter
in again. The extraordinary decline of that stock has given rise to
the wildest surmises in the way of accounting for it, but among the lot
there is harm in but one, which is the expressed belief on the part of
a few that the bottom has fallen out of the mine. Gould & Curry is
climbing again, however.

It has been many a day since San Francisco has seen livelier times in
her theatrical department than at present. Large audiences are to be
found nightly at the Opera House, the Metropolitan, the Academy of
Music, the American, the New Idea, and even the Museum, which is not
as good a one as Barnum's. The Circus company, also, played a lucrative
engagement, but they are gone on their travels now. The graceful,
charming, clipper-built Ella Zoyara was very popular.

Miss Caroline Richings has played during the past fortnight at Maguire's
Opera House to large and fashionable audiences, and has delighted them
beyond measure with her sweet singing. It sounds improbable, perhaps,
but the statement is true, nevertheless.

You will hear of the Metropolitan, now, from every visitor to Washoe.
It opened under the management of the new lessees, Miss Annette Ince and
Julia Dean Hayne, with a company who are as nearly all stars as it was
possible to make it. For instance--Annette Ince, Emily Jordan, Mrs.
Judah, Julia Dean Hayne, James H. Taylor, Frank Lawlor, Harry Courtaine
and Fred. Franks, (my favorite Washoe tragedian, whose name they
have put in small letters in the programme, when it deserves to be in
capitals--because, whatever part they give him to play, don't he always
play it well? and does he not possess the first virtue of a comedian,
which is to do humorous things with grave decorum and without seeming to
know that they are funny?)

The birds, and the flowers, and the Chinamen, and the winds, and the
sunshine, and all things that go to make life happy, are present in San
Francisco to-day, just as they are all days in the year. Therefore,
one would expect to hear these things spoken of, and gratefully, and
disagreeable matters of little consequence allowed to pass without
comment. I say, one would suppose that. But don't you deceive
yourself--any one who supposes anything of the kind, supposes an
absurdity. The multitude of pleasant things by which the people of San
Francisco are surrounded are not talked of at all. No--they damn the
wind, and they damn the dust, and they give all their attention to
damning them well, and to all eternity. The blasted winds and the
infernal dust--these alone form the eternal topics of conversation, and
a mighty absurd topic it seems to one just out of Washoe. There isn't
enough wind here to keep breath in my body, or dust enough to keep sand
in my craw. But it is human nature to find fault--to overlook that which
is pleasant to the eye, and seek after that which is distasteful to it.
You take a stranger into the Bank Exchange and show him the magnificent
picture of Sampson and Delilah, and what is the first object he
notices?--Sampson's fine face and flaming eye? or the noble beauty of
his form? or the lovely, half-nude Delilah? or the muscular Philistine
behind Sampson, who is furtively admiring her charms? or the perfectly
counterfeited folds of the rich drapery below her knees? or the symmetry
and truth to nature of Sampson's left foot? No, sir, the first thing
that catches his eye is the scissors on the floor at Delilah's feet, and
the first thing he says, "Them scissors is too modern--there warn't no
scissors like that in them days, by a d--d sight!"


Territorial Enterprise, June 27--30, 1865


Immorality is not decreasing in San Francisco. I saw a girl in the
city prison last night who looked as much out of place there as I did
myself--possibly more so. She was petite and diffident, and only sixteen
years and one month old. To judge by her looks, one would say she was as
sinless as a child. But such was not the case. She had been living with
a strapping young nigger for six months! She told her story as artlessly
as a school-girl, and it did not occur to her for a moment that she
had been doing anything unbecoming; and I never listened to a narrative
which seemed more simple and straightforward, or more free from
ostentation and vain-glory. She told her name, and her age, to a day;
she said she was born in Holborn, City of London; father living, but
gone back to England; was not married to the negro, but she was left
without any one to take care of her, and he had taken charge of that
department and had conducted it since she was fifteen and a half years
old very satisfactorily. All listeners pitied her, and said feelingly:
"Poor heifer! poor devil!" and said she was an ignorant, erring child,
and had not done wrong wilfully and knowingly, and they hoped she would
pass her examination for the Industrial School and be removed from the
temptation and the opportunity to sin. Tears--and it was a credit to
their manliness and their good feeling--tears stood in the eyes of some
of those stern policemen.

O, woman, thy name is humbug! Afterwards, while I sat taking some notes,
and not in sight from the women's cell, some of the old blisters fell
to gossiping, and lo! young Simplicity chipped in and clattered away as
lively as the vilest of them! It came out in the conversation that she
was hail fellow well met with all the old female rapscallions in the
city, and had had business relations with their several establishments
for a long time past. She spoke affectionately of some of them, and the
reverse of others; and dwelt with a toothsome relish upon numberless
reminiscences of her social and commercial intercourse with them. She
knew all manner of men, too--men with quaint and suggestive names, for
the most part--and liked "Oyster-eyed Bill," and "Bloody Mike," and "The
Screamer," but cherished a spirit of animosity toward "Foxy McDonald"
for cutting her with a bowie-knife at a strumpet ball one night. She
a poor innocent kitten! Oh! She was a scallawag whom it would be base
flattery to call a prostitute! She a candidate for the Industrial
School! Bless you, she has graduated long ago. She is competent to take
charge of a University of Vice. In the ordinary branches she is equal to
the best; and in the higher ones, such as ornamental swearing, and fancy
embroidered filagree slang, she is a shade superior to any artist I ever
listened to.

Territorial Enterprise, July 7-19, 1865

[portion of letter from San Francisco describing black marchers in
Fourth of July celebration]


And at the fag-end of the procession was a long double file of the
proudest, happiest scoundrels I saw yesterday--niggers. Or perhaps I
should say "them damned niggers," which is the other name they go by
now. They did all it was in their power to do, poor devils, to modify
the prominence of the contrast between black and white faces which seems
so hateful to their white fellow-creatures, by putting their lightest
colored darkies in the front rank, then glooming down by some
unaggravating and nicely graduated shades of darkness to the fell and
dismal blackness of undefiled and unalloyed niggerdom in the remote
extremity of the procession. It was a fine stroke of strategy--the day
was dusty and no man could tell where the white folks left off and the
niggers began. The "damned naygurs"--this is another descriptive title
which has been conferred upon them by a class of our fellow-citizens who
persist, in the most short-sighted manner, in being on bad terms with
them in the face of the fact that they have got to sing with them in
heaven or scorch with them in hell some day in the most familiar and
sociable way, and on a footing of most perfect equality--the "damned
naygurs," I say, smiled one broad, extravagant, powerful smile of
grateful thankfulness and profound and perfect happiness from the
beginning of the march to the end; and through this vast, black,
drifting cloud of smiles their white teeth glimmered fitfully like
heat-lightning on a summer's night. If a white man honored them with
a smile in return, they were utterly overcome, and fell to bowing like
Oriental devotees, and attempting the most extravagant and impossible
smiles, reckless of lock-jaw. They might as well have left their hats at
home, for they never put them on. I was rather irritated at the idea of
letting these fellows march in the procession myself, at first, but
I would have scorned to harbor so small a thought if I had known the
privilege was going to do them so much good. There seemed to be a
religious-benevolent society among them with a banner--the only one in
the colored ranks, I believe--and all hands seemed to take boundless
pride in it. The banner had a picture on it, but I could not exactly get
the hang of its significance. It presented a very black and uncommonly
sick looking nigger, in bed, attended by two other niggers--one reading
the Bible to him and the other one handing him a plate of oysters; but
what the very mischief this blending of contraband dissolution, raw
oysters and Christian consolation, could possibly be symbolical of, was
more than I could make out.

Territorial Enterprise, October 10-11, 1865

[Portion of Letter from San Francisco]



Now the Rev. Mr. Stebbins acted like a sensible man--a man with his
presence of mind about him--he did precisely what I thought of doing
myself at the time of the earthquake, but had no opportunity--he came
down out of his pulpit and embraced a woman. Some say it was his wife.
Well, and so it might have been his wife--I'm not saying it wasn't, am
I? I am not going to intimate anything of that kind--because how do I
know but what it was his wife? I say it might have been his wife--and so
it might--I was not there, and I do not consider that I have any
right to say it was not his wife. In reality I am satisfied it was his
wife--but I am sorry, though, because it would have been so much better
presence of mind to have embraced some other woman. I was in Third
street. I looked around for some woman to embrace, but there was none
in sight. I could have expected no better fortune, though, so I said, "O
certainly--just my luck."


When the earthquake arrived in Oakland, the commanding officer of the
Congregational Sabbath School was reading these words, by way of text:
"And the earth shook and trembled!" In an instant the earthquake seized
the text and preached a powerful sermon on it. I do not know whether the
commanding officer resumed the subject again where the earthquake left
off or not, but if he did I am satisfied that he has got a good deal of
"cheek." I do not consider that any modest man would try to improve on a
topic that had already been treated by an earthquake.


A young gentleman who lives in Sacramento street, rushed down stairs
and appeared in public with no raiment on save a knit undershirt,
which concealed his person about as much as its tin foil cap conceals a
champagne bottle. He struck an attitude such as a man assumes when he is
looking up, expecting danger from above, and bends his arm and holds
it aloft to ward off possible missiles--and standing thus he glared
fiercely up at the fire-wall of a tall building opposite, from which
a few bricks had fallen. Men shouted at him to go in the house, people
seized him by the arm and tried to drag him away--even tender-hearted
women, (O, Woman!--O ever noble, unselfish, angelic woman!--O, Woman,
in our hours of ease uncertain, coy, and hard to please--when anything
happens to go wrong with our harness, a ministering angel thou), women,
I say, averted their faces, and nudging the paralyzed and impassible
statue in the ribs with their elbows beseeched him to take their
aprons--to take their shawls--to take their hoop-skirts--anything,
anything, so that he would not stand there longer in such a plight
and distract people's attention from the earthquake. But he wouldn't
budge--he stood there in his naked majesty till the last tremor died
away from the earth, and then looked around on the multitude--and
stupidly enough, too, until his dull eye fell upon himself. He went back
upstairs, then. He went up lively.


But where is the use in dwelling on these incidents? There are enough of
them to make a book. Joe Noques, of your city, was playing billiards in
the Cosmopolitan Hotel. He went through a window into the court and then
jumped over an iron gate eighteen feet high, and took his billiard cue
with him. Sam Witgenstein took refuge in a church--probably the first
time he was ever in one in his life. Judge Bryan climbed a telegraph
pole. Pete Hopkins narrowly escaped injury. He was shaken abruptly from
the summit of Telegraph Hill and fell on a three-story brick house ten
feet below. I see that the morning papers (always ready to smooth over
things), attribute the destruction of the house to the earthquake.
That is newspaper magnanimity--but an earthquake has no friends.
Extraordinary things happened to everybody except me. No one even spoke
to me--at least only one man did, I believe--a man named Robinson--from
Salt Lake, I think--who asked me to take a drink. I refused.

Territorial Enterprise, October 21-24, 1865

[portion of letter from San Francisco written October 19, 1865]


Where did all these Democrats come from? They grow thicker and thicker
and act more and more outrageously at each successive election. Now
yesterday they had the presumption to elect S. H. Dwinelle to the
Judgeship of the Fifteenth District Court, and not content with this,
they were depraved enough to elect four out of the six Justices of the
Peace! Oh, 'Enery Villiam, where is thy blush! Oh, Timothy Hooligan,
where is thy shame! It's out. Democrats haven't got any. But Union men
staid away from the election--they either did that or else they came to
the election and voted Democratic tickets--I think it was the latter,
though the Flag will doubtless say it was the former. But these
Democrats didn't stay away--you never catch a Democrat staying away from
an election. The grand end and aim of his life is to vote or be
voted for, and he accommodates to circumstances and does one just as
cheerfully as he does the other. The Democracy of America left their
native wilds in England and Connaught to come here and vote--and when a
man, and especially a foreigner, who don't have any voting at home any
more than an Arkansas man has ice-cream for dinner, comes three or four
thousand miles to luxuriate in occasional voting, he isn't going to
stay away from an election any more than the Arkansas man will leave the
hotel table in "Orleans" until he has destroyed most of the ice cream.
The only man I ever knew who could counteract this passion on the part
of Democrats for voting, was Robert Roach, carpenter of the steamer
Aleck Scott, "plying to and from St. Louis to New Orleans and back,"
as her advertisement sometimes read. The Democrats generally came up as
deck passengers from New Orleans, and the yellow fever used to snatch
them right and left--eight or nine a day for the first six or eight
hundred miles; consequently Roach would have a lot on hand to "plant"
every time the boat landed to wood--"plant" was Roach's word. One day as
Roach was superintending a burial the Captain came up and said:

"God bless my soul, Roach, what do you mean by shoving a corpse into
a hole in the hill-side in this barbarous way, face down and its feet
sticking out?"

"I always plant them foreign Democrats in that manner, sir, because,
damn their souls, if you plant 'em any other way they'll dig out and
vote the first time there's an election--but look at that fellow,
now--you put 'em in head first and face down and the more they dig the
deeper they'll go into the hill."

In my opinion, if we do not get Roach to superintend our cemeteries,
enough Democrats will dig out at the next election to carry their entire
ticket. It begins to look that way.

Territorial Enterprise, October 26-28, 1865

San Francisco Letter

[written October 24, 1865; some portions missing]


Well, you ought to see the new style of bonnets, and then die. You see,
everybody has discarded ringlets and bunches of curls, and taken to
the clod of compact hair on the "after-guard," which they call a
"waterfall," though why they name it so I cannot make out, for it looks
no more like one's general notion of a waterfall than a cabbage looks
like a cataract. Yes, they have thrown aside the bunches of curls which
necessitated the wearing of a bonnet with a back-door to it, or rather,
a bonnet without any back to it at all, so that the curls bulged out
from under an overhanging spray of slender feathers, sprigs of grass,
etc. You know the kind of bonnet I mean; it was as if a lady spread a
diaper on her head, with two of the corners brought down over her ears,
and the other trimmed with a bunch of graceful flummery and allowed
to hang over her waterfall--fashions are mighty tanglesome things to
write--but I am coming to it directly. The diaper was the only beautiful
bonnet women have worn within my recollection--but as they have taken
exclusively to the waterfalls, now, they have thrown it aside and
adopted, ah me, the infernalest, old-fashionedest, ruralest atrocity in
its stead you ever saw. It is perfectly plain and hasn't a ribbon, or
a flower, or any ornament whatever about it; it is severely shaped like
the half of a lady's thimble split in two lengthwise--or would be if
that thimble had a perfectly square end instead of a rounded one--just
imagine it--glance at it in your mind's eye--and recollect, no ribbons,
no flowers, no filagree--only the plainest kind of plain straw or plain
black stuff. It don't come forward as far as the hair, and it fits to
the head as tightly as a thimble fits, folded in a square mass against
the back of the head, and the square end of the bonnet half covers it
and fits as square and tightly against it as if somebody had hit the
woman in the back of the head with a tombstone or some other heavy and
excessively flat projectile. And a woman looks as distressed in it as a
cat with her head fast in a tea-cup. It is infamous.


The Plaza, or Portsmouth Square, is "done," at last, and by a resolution
passed by the Board of Supervisors last night, is to be thrown open to
the public henceforth at 7 o'clock A. M. and closed again at 7 o'clock
P. M. every day. The same resolution prohibits the visits of dogs to
this holy ground, and denies to the public the privilege of rolling on
its grass. If I could bring myself to speak vulgarly, I should say that
the latter clause is rough--very rough on the people. To be forced to
idle in gravel walks when there is soft green grass close at hand, is
tantalizing; it is as uncomfortable as to lie disabled and thirsty
in sight of a fountain; or to look at a feast without permission to
participate in it, when you are hungry; and almost as exasperating as to
have to smack your chops over the hugging and kissing going on between
a couple of sweethearts without any reasonable excuse for inserting your
own metaphorical shovel. And yet there is one consolation about it on
Nature's eternal equity of "compensation." No matter how degraded and
worthless you may become here, you cannot go to grass in the Plaza, at
any rate. The Plaza is a different thing from what it used to be; it
used to be a text from a desert--it was not large enough for a whole
chapter; but now it is traversed here and there by walks of precise
width, and which are graded to a degree of rigid accuracy which is
constantly suggestive of the spirit level; and the grass plots are as
strictly shaped as a dandy's side whiskers, and their surfaces clipped
and smoothed with the same mathematical exactness. In a word, the Plaza
looks like the intensely brown and green perspectiveless diagram of
stripes and patches which an architect furnishes to his client as a plan
for a projected city garden or cemetery. And its glaring greenness in
the midst of so much sombreness is startling and yet piercingly pleasant
to the eye. It reminds one of old John Dehle's vegetable garden in
Virginia, which, after a rain, used to burn like a square of green fire
in the midst of the dull, gray desolation around it.


I am told that the Empress Eugenie is growing bald on the top of her
head, and that to hide this defect she now combs her "back hair" forward
in such a way as to make her look all right. I am also told that this
mode of dressing the hair is already fashionable in all the great
civilized cities of the world, and that it will shortly be adopted here.
Therefore let your ladies "stand-by" and prepare to drum their ringlets
to the front when I give the word. I shall keep a weather eye out
for this fashion, for I am an uncompromising enemy of the popular
"waterfall," and I yearn to see it in disgrace. Just think of the
disgusting shape and appearance of the thing. The hair is drawn to a
slender neck at the back, and then commences a great fat, oblong ball,
like a kidney covered with a net; and sometimes this net is so thickly
bespangled with white beads that the ball looks soft, and fuzzy, and
filmy and gray at a little distance--so that it vividly reminds you of
those nauseating garden spiders in the States that go about dragging a
pulpy, grayish bag-full of young spiders slung to them behind; and when
I look at these suggestive waterfalls and remember how sea-sick it used
to make me to mash one of those spider-bags, I feel sea-sick again, as
a general thing. Its shape alone is enough to turn one's stomach. Let's
have the back-hair brought forward as soon as convenient. N. B.--I shall
feel much obliged to you if you can aid me in getting up this panic. I
have no wife of my own and therefore as long as I have to make the most
of other people's it is a matter of vital importance to me that they
should dress with some degree of taste.

Territorial Enterprise, October 15-31, 1865

[portion of Letter from San Francisco]


Where's Ajax now, with his boasted defiance of the lightning? Who is
Ajax to Popper, and what is lightning to an earthquake? It is taking no
chances to speak of to defy the lightning, for it might pelt away at
you for a year and miss you every time--but I don't care what corner
you hide in, if the earthquake comes it will shake you; and if you will
build your house weak enough to give it a fair show, it will melt it
down like butter. Therefore, I exalt Popper above Ajax, for Popper
defieth the earthquake. The famous shake of the 8th of October snatched
the front out of Popper's great four-story shell of a house on the
corner of Third and Mission as easily as if it had been mere pastime;
yet I notice that the reckless Popper is rebuilding it again just as
thin as it was before, and using the same old bricks. Is this paying
proper respect to earthquakes? I think not. If I were an earthquake, I
would never stand for such insolence from Popper. I am confident that I
would shake that shell down, even if it took my last shake.

Territorial Enterprise, October 31-November 2, 1865

[portion of San Francisco letter]


I feel savage this morning. And as usual, when one wants to growl, it
is almost impossible to find things to growl about with any degree of
satisfaction. I cannot find anything in the steamer departures to get
mad at. Only, I wonder who "J. Schmeltzer" is?--and what does he
have such an atrocious name for?--and what business has he got in the
States?--who is there in the States who cares whether Schmeltzer comes
or not? The conduct of this unknown Schmeltzer is exasperating to the
last degree.

And off goes General Rosecrans, without ever doing anything to give a
paper a chance to abuse him. He has behaved himself, and kept quiet, and
avoided scandalous meddling with the Oakland Seminaries, and paid his
board in the most aggravating manner. Let him go.

And Conness is gone. Oh, d--n Conness!

Territorial Enterprise, November 1865


It is bound to come! There is no help for it. I smell it afar off--I see
the signs in the air! Every day and every hour of every day I grow more
and more nervous, for with every minute of waning time the dreadful
infliction comes nearer and nearer in its inexorable march! In another
week, maybe, all San Francisco will be singing "Wearing of the Green!" I
know it. I have suffered before, and I know the symptoms. This holds
off long, but it is partly that the calamity may gather irresistible
worrying-power, and partly because it is harder to learn than Chinese.
But that is all the worse; for when the people do learn it they will
learn it bad--and terrible will be the distress it will bring upon the
community. A year ago "Johnny came marching home!" That song was sung by
everybody, in every key, in every locality, at all hours of the day and
night, and always out of tune. It sent many unoffending persons to the
Stockton asylum. There was no stopping the epidemic, and so it had to be
permitted to run its course and wear itself out. Short was our respite,
and then a still more malignant distemper broke out in the midst of this
harried and suffering community. It was "You'll not forget me, mother,
mother, mother, mother!" with an ever-accumulating aggravation of
expression upon each successive "mother." The fire-boys sat up all night
to sing it; and bands of sentimental stevedores and militia soldiers
patroled the streets and howled its lugubrious strains. A passion
for serenading attacked the youth of the city, and they sang it under
verandahs in the back streets until the dogs and cats destroyed their
voices in unavailing efforts to lay the devilish spirit that was driving
happiness from their hearts. Finally there came a season of repose, and
the community slowly recovered from the effects of the musical calamity.
The respite was not long. In an unexpected moment they were attacked,
front and rear, by a new enemy--"When we were marching through Georgia!"
Tongue cannot tell what we suffered while this frightful disaster was
upon us. Young misses sang it to the guitar and the piano; young men
sang it to the banjo and the fiddle; the un-blood stained soldier yelled
it with enthusiasm as he marched through the imaginary swamps and cotton
plantations of the drill-room; the firemen sang it as they trundled
their engines home from conflagrations; and the hated serenader tortured
it with his damned accordeon. Some of us survived, and some have gone
the old road to a haven of rest at Stockton, where the wicked cease from
troubling and the popular songs are not allowed. For the space of four
weeks the survivors have been happy.

But as I have said before, it is bound to come! Arrah-na-Pogque is
breeding a song that will bedeck some mountain with new-made graves! In
another week we shall be "Wearing of the Green," and in a fortnight some
will be wearing of the black in consequence. Three repetitions of this
song will produce lunacy, and five will kill--it is that much more
virulent than its predecessors. People are finding it hard to learn,
but when they get it learned they will find it potent for harm. It
is Wheatleigh's song. He sings it in Arrah-na-Pogque, with a sprig of
shamrock in his hat. Wheatleigh sings it with such aggravated solemnity
as to make an audience long for the grave. It is doled out slowly, and
every note settles deliberately to its place on one's heart like a
solid iceberg--and by the time it is finished the temperature of the
theatre has fallen to twenty degrees. Think what a dead-cold winter we
shall have here when this Arctic funeral melody becomes popular! Think
of it being performed at midnight, in lonely places, upon the spirit
depressing accordeon! Think of being driven to blow your brains out
under such circumstances, and then dying to the grave-yard cadences of
"Wearing of the Green!" But it is bound to come, and we may as well bow
our heads and submit with such degree of Christian resignation as we are
able to command.

THE CALIFORNIAN, Saturday, November 11, 1865

EXIT "BUMMER."--As we have devoted but little space to an event which
has filled our local contemporaries with as much sorrow (judging from
the columns of lamentations it has called forth) as would the decease
of the best biped in the city, we give "Mark Twain's" view of the
occurrence as recorded in the ENTERPRISE of the 8th. Strangely enough,
Mark, who can't stand "ballad infliction" seems to think there has not
been quite enough of "Bummer":

"The old vagrant 'Bummer' is really dead at last; and although he was
always more respected than his obsequious vassal, the dog 'Lazarus,' his
exit has not made half as much stir in the newspaper world as signalised
the departure of the latter. I think it is because he died a natural
death: died with friends around him to smooth his pillow and wipe
the death-damps from his brow, and receive his last words of love and
resignation; because he died full of years, and honor, and disease, and
fleas. He was permited to die a natural death, as I have said, but poor
Lazarus 'died with his boots on'--which is to say, he lost his life by
violence; he gave up the ghost mysteriously, at dead of night, with none
to cheer his last moments or soothe his dying pains. So the murdered
dog was canonized in the newspapers, his shortcomings excused and his
virtues heralded to the world; but his superior, parting with his life
in the fullness of time, and in the due course of nature, sinks as
quietly as might the mangiest cur among us. Well, let him go. In
earlier days he was courted and caressed; but latterly he has lost his
comeliness--his dignity had given place to a want of self-respect, which
allowed him to practice mean deceptions to regain for a moment that
sympathy and notice which had become necessary to his very existence,
and it was evident to all that the dog had had his day; his great
popularity was gone forever. In fact, Bummer should have died sooner:
there was a time when his death would have left a lasting legacy of fame
to his name. Now, however, he will be forgotten in a few days. Bummer's
skin is to be stuffed and placed with that of Lazarus."

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 31, 1864


The lamented Lazarus departed this life about a year ago, and from that
time until recently poor Bummer has mourned the loss of his faithful
friend in solitude, scorning the sympathy and companionship of his
race with that stately reserve and exclusiveness which has always
distinguished him since he became a citizen of San Francisco. But, for
several weeks past, we have observed a vagrant black puppy has taken
up with him, and attends him in his promenades, bums with him at the
restaurants, and watches over his slumbers as unremittingly as did
the sainted Lazarus of other days. Whether that puppy really feels an
unselfish affection for Bummer, or whether he is actuated by unworthy
motives, and goes with him merely to ring in on the eating houses
through his popularity at such establishments, or whether he is one of
those fawning sycophants that fasten upon the world's heroes in order
that they may be glorified by the reflected light of greatness, we can
not yet determine. We only know that he hangs around Bummer, and snarls
at intruders upon his repose, and looks proud and happy when the old dog
condescends to notice him. He ventures upon no puppyish levity in the
presence of his prince, and essays no unbecoming familiarity, but in all
respects conducts himself with the respectful decorum which such a puppy
so situated should display. Consequently, in time, he may grow into high

Territorial Enterprise, November 9-12, 1865

[portion of San Francisco letter describing trip on tugboat "Rescue"]


We lunched, then, and shortly began to drink champagne--by the basket.
I saw the tremendous guns frowning from the fort; I saw San Francisco
spread out over the sand-hills like a picture; I saw the huge fortress
at Black Point looming hazily in the distance; I saw tall ships sweeping
in from the sea through the Golden Gate; I saw that it was time to take
another drink, and after that I saw no more. All hands fell to singing
"When we were Marching Through Georgia," and the remainder of the trip
was fought out on that line. We landed at the steamboat wharf at 5
o'clock, safe and sound. Some of those reporters I spoke of said we had
been to Benicia, and the others said we had been to the Cliff House,
but, poor devils, they had been drinking, and they did not really know
where we had been. I know, but I do not choose to tell. I enjoyed that
trip first-rate. I am rather fond of a trip on a fast boat with a jolly
crowd. That was a jolly crowd. Sometimes they were all out forward
standing on their heads, and then the boat wouldn't steer because
her rudder was sticking up in the air like a sail of a wind-mill; and
sometimes they were all aft turning hand springs and playing "mumble
peg," and then the boat wouldn't steer because she stood so straight
up in the water that her head caught all the wind that was blowing; and
sometimes they were all on the starboard side eating and drinking and
singing, and then she wouldn't steer because she was listed worse than
any soldier that ever listed since the war began. Still, even under
these trying circumstances, the boat made fifteen miles an hour, and so
I suppose that on an even keel she can make a hundred, or thereabouts. I
enjoyed that excursion.

Territorial Enterprise, November 15-18, 1865

[portion of letter from San Francisco]


Let "John Wychecombe Smith, Esq., one of our pioneer merchants, and one
among our wealthiest and most respected citizens," leave in the steamer
"to revisit the home of his nativity," and one of these papers will give
you half a column of sorrow and distress about it, and wind up with the
eternal "but we are happy to say that not many months will elapse ere he
will be with us again"--and forget to mention that a distinguished and
war-bronzed Major-General went in the same steamer with the wealthy and
successful Smith. The other paper would let John Wychecombe Smith go
to the States, or to the devil, either, a dozen times over, and always
maintain an insolent silence about it: but let Moike Mulrooney, or Tim
Murphy, or Judy O'Flaherty, receive a present of raal Irish whisky from
the ould country, and it will never let you hear the last of it.

Territorial Enterprise, November 18, 1865

[portion of letter from San Francisco]


As usual, the Alta reporter fastens the mysterious What Cheer robbery
on the same horrible person who knocked young Meyers in the head with
a slung-shot a year ago and robbed his father's pawnbroker shop of some
brass jewelry and crippled revolvers, in broad daylight; and he laid
that exploit on the horrible wretch who robbed the Mayor's Clerk, who
half-murdered detective officer Rose in a lonely spot below Santa Clara;
and he proved that this same monster killed the lone woman in a secluded
house up a dark alley with a carpenter's chisel, months before; and he
demonstrated by inspired argument that the same villain who chiselled
the woman tomahawked a couple of defenceless women in the most
mysterious manner up another dark alley a few months before that. Now,
the perpetrator of these veiled crimes has never been discovered, yet
this wicked reporter has taken the whole batch and piled them coolly
and relentlessly upon the shoulders of one imaginary scoundrel, with a
comfortable, "Here, these are yours," and with an air that says plainly
that no denial, and no argument in the case, will be entertained. And
every time anything happens that is unlawful and dreadful, and has a
spice of mystery about it, this reporter, without waiting to see if
maybe somebody else didn't do it, goes off at once and jams it on top of
the old pile, as much as to say, "Here--here's some more of your work."
Now this isn't right, you know. It is all well enough for Mr. Smythe
to divert suspicion from himself--nobody objects to that--but it is not
right for him to lay every solitary thing on this mysterious stranger,
whoever he is--it is not right, you know. He ought to give the poor
devil a show. The idea of accusing "The Mysterious" of the What Cheer
burglary, considering who was the last boarder to bed and the first one

Smythe is endeavoring to get on the detective police force. I think
it will be wronging the community to give this man such a position as
that--now you know that yourself, don't you? He would settle down on
some particular fellow, and every time there was a rape committed, or a
steamship stolen, or an oyster cellar rifled, or a church burned down,
or a family massacred, or a black-and-tan pup stolen, he would march off
with portentous mien and snatch that fellow and say, "Here, you are at
it again, you know," and snake him off to the Station House.

Territorial Enterprise, November 19 or 21, 1865


It was estimated that four hundred persons were present at the ball. The
gentlemen wore the orthodox costume for such occasions, and the ladies
were dressed the best they knew how. N. B.--Most of these ladies were
pretty, and some of them absolutely beautiful. Four out of every five
ladies, present were pretty. The ratio at the Colfax party was two out
of every five. I always keep the run of these things. While upon this
department of the subject, I may as well tarry a moment and furnish you
with descriptions of some of the most noticeable costumes.

Mrs. W. M. was attired in an elegant pate de foi gras, made expressly
for her, and was greatly admired.

Miss S. had her hair done up. She was the centre of attraction for the
gentlemen, and the envy of all the ladies.

Miss G. W. was tastefully dressed in a tout ensemble, and was greeted
with deafening applause wherever she went.

Mrs. C. N. was superbly arrayed in white kid gloves. Her modest and
engaging manner accorded well with the unpretending simplicity of her
costume, and caused her to be regarded with absorbing interest by every

The charming Miss M. M. B. appeared in a thrilling waterfall, whose
exceeding grace and volume compelled the homage of pioneers and
emigrants alike. How beautiful she was!

The queenly Mrs. L. R. was attractively attired in her new and beautiful
false teeth, and the bon jour effect they naturally produced was
heightened by her enchanting and well sustained smile. The manner
of this lady is charmingly pensive and melancholy, and her troops of
admirers desired no greater happiness than to get on the scent of her
sozodont-sweetened sighs and track her through her sinuous course among
the gay and restless multitude.

Miss R. P., with that repugnance to ostentation in dress which is so
peculiar to her, was attired in a simple white lace collar, fastened
with a neat pearl-button solitaire. The fine contrast between the
sparkling vivacity of her natural optic and the steadfast attentiveness
of her placid glass eye was the subject of general and enthusiastic

The radiant and sylph-like Mrs. T., late of your State, wore hoops. She
showed to good advantage, and created a sensation wherever she appeared.
She was the gayest of the gay.

Miss C. L. B. had her fine nose elegantly enameled, and the easy grace
with which she blew it from time to time, marked her as a cultivated and
accomplished woman of the world; its exquisitely modulated tone excited
the admiration of all who had the happiness to hear it.

Being offended with Miss X., and our acquaintance having ceased
permanently, I will take this opportunity of observing to her that it is
of no use for her to be slopping off to every ball that takes place,
and flourishing around with a brass oyster-knife skewered through her
waterfall, and smiling her sickly smile through her decayed teeth, with
her dismal pug nose in the air. There is no use in it--she don't fool
anybody. Everybody knows she is old; everybody knows she is repaired
(you might almost say built) with artificial bones and hair and muscles
and things, from the ground up--put together scrap by scrap--and
everybody knows, also, that all one would have to do would be to pull
out her key-pin and she would go to pieces like a Chinese puzzle.
There, now, my faded flower, take that paragraph home with you and amuse
yourself with it; and if ever you turn your wart of a nose up at me
again I will sit down and write something that will just make you rise
up and howl.

Territorial Enterprise, November 28-30, 1865


I will now relate an affecting incident of my meeting with Uncle Lige,
as a companion novelette to the one published by Dan the other day,
entitled "Uncle Henry."

A day or two since--before the late stormy weather--I was taking a
quiet stroll in the western suburbs of the city. The day was sunny
and pleasant. In front of a small but neat "bit house," seated upon a
bank--a worn out and discarded faro bank--I saw a man and a little girl.
The sight was too much for me, and I burst into tears. Oh, God! I cried,
this is too rough! After the violence of my emotion had in a manner
spent itself, I ventured to look once more upon that touching picture.
The left hand of the girl (how well I recollect which hand it was! by
the warts on it)--a fair-haired, sweet-faced child of about eight years
of age--rested upon the right shoulder (how perfectly I remember it was
his right shoulder, because his left shoulder had been sawed off in a
saw-mill) of the man by whose side she was seated. She was gazing toward
the summit of Lone Mountain, and prating of the gravestones on the top
of it and of the sunshine and Diggers resting on its tomb-clad slopes.
The head of the man drooped forward till his face almost rested upon
his breast, and he seemed intently listening. It was only a pleasing
pretence, though, for there was nothing for him to hear save the
rattling of the carriages on the gravel road beside him, and he could
have straightened himself up and heard that easy enough, poor fellow. As
I approached, the child observed me, notwithstanding her extreme youth,
and ceasing to talk, smilingly looked at me, strange as it may seem. I
stopped, again almost overpowered, but after a struggle I mastered
my feelings sufficiently to proceed. I gave her a smile--or rather, I
swapped her one in return for the one I had just received, and she said:

"This is Uncle Lige--poor blind-drunk Uncle Lige."

This burst of confidence from an entire stranger, and one so young
withal, caused my subjugated emotions to surge up in my breast once
more, but again, with a strong effort, I controlled them. I looked at
the wine-bred cauliflower on the poor man's nose and saw how it had all

"Yes," said he, noticing by my eloquent countenance that I had seen how
it had all happened, notwithstanding nothing had been said yet about
anything having happened, "Yes, it happened in Reeseriv' a year ago;
since tha(ic)at time been living here with broth--Robert'n lill Addie

"Oh, he's the best uncle, and tells me such stories!" cried the little

"At's aw-ri, you know (ick!)--at's aw ri," said the kind hearted, gentle
old man, spitting on his shirt bosom and slurring it off with his hand.

The child leaned quickly forward and kissed his poor blossomy face. We
beheld two great tears start from the man's sightless eyes, but when
they saw what sort of country they had got to travel over, they went
back again. Kissing the child again and again and once more and then
several times, and afterwards repeating it, he said:

"H(o-ook!)--oorah for Melical eagle star-spalgle baller! At's aw-ri, you
know--(ick!)--at's aw-ri"--and he stroked her sunny curls and spit on
his shirt bosom again.

This affecting scene was too much for my already over charged feelings,
and I burst into a flood of tears and hurried from the spot.

Such is the touching story of Uncle Lige. It may not be quite as sick
as Dan's, but there is every bit as much reasonable material in it for
a big calf like either of us to cry over. Cannot you publish the two
novelettes in book form and send them forth to destroy such of our
fellow citizens as are spared by the cholera?

Territorial Enterprise, December 8-10, 1865


Tom Maguire, Torn with ire, Lighted on Macdougall, Grabbed his throat,
Tore his coat, And split him in the bugle. Shame! Oh, fie! Maguire,
why Will you thus skyugle? Why bang and claw, And gouge and chaw The
unprepared Macdougall? Of bones bereft, See how you've left, Vestvali,
gentle Jew gal--And now you've slashed, And almost hashed, The form of
poor Macdougall.

Territorial Enterprise, December 13-15, 1865

[portion of San Francisco Letter, written December 11, 1865]

"Christian Spectator"--REV. O. P. FITZGERALD, of the Minna street
Methodist Church South, is fairly under way, now, with his new Christian
Spectator. The second number is before me. I believe I can venture to
recommend it to the people of Nevada, of both Northern and Southern
proclivities. It is not jammed full of incendiary religious matter about
hell-fire, and brimstone, and wicked young men knocked endways by a
streak of lightning while in the act of going fishing on Sunday. Its
contents are not exciting or calculated to make people set up all night
to read them. I like the Spectator a great deal better than I expected
to, and I think you ought to cheerfully spare room for a short review
of it. The leading editorial says: "A journal of the character of
the Spectator is always to a great extent the reflex of the editor's
individuality." Then follows a pleasant moral homily entitled "That
Nubbin;" then puffs of a religious college and a Presbyterian church;
then some poetical reflections on the happy fact "The War is Over;"
then a "hyste" of some old slow coach of a preacher for not getting
subscribers for the Spectator fast enough; then a confidential hint to
the reader that he turn out and gather subscriptions--and forward the
money; then a puff of the Oakland Female Seminary; then a remark that
the Spectator's terms are cash; then a suggestion that the paper would
make a gorgeous Christmas present--the only joke in the whole paper,
and even this one is written with a fine show of seriousness; then a
complimentary blast for Bishop Pierce; then a column of "Personal Items"
concerning distinguished Confederates, chiefly; then something about
"Our New Dress"--not one of Ward's shirts for the editor, but the
paper's new dress; then a word about "our publishing house at Nashville,
Tenn.;" then a repetition of the fact that "our terms are cash;" then
something concerning "our head"--not the editor's, which is "level," but
the paper's; then follow two columns of religious news not of a nature
to drive one into a frenzy of excitement. On the outside is one of
those entertaining novelettes, so popular among credulous Sabbath-school
children, about a lone woman silently praying a desperate and
blood-thirsty robber out of his boots--he looking on and fingering his
clasp-knife and wiping it on his hand, and she calmly praying, till at
last he "blanched beneath her fixed gaze, a panic appeared to seize him,
and he closed his knife and went out." Oh, that won't do, you know. That
is rather too steep. I guess she must have scalded him a little. There
is also a column about a "remarkable police officer," and praising him
up to the skies, and showing, by facts, sufficient to convince me
that if he belonged to our force, Mr. Fitzgerald was drawing it rather
strong. I read it with avidity, because I wished to know whether it was
Chief Burke, or Blitz, or Lees, the parson was trying to curry favor
with. But it was only an allegory, after all; the impossible police
man was "Conscience." It was one of those fine moral humbugs, like some
advertisements which seduce you down a column of stuff about General
Washington and wind up with a recommendation to "try Peterson's aromatic

Subscribe for the vivacious Christian Spectator; C. A. Klose is
financial agent.

More Romance--The pretty waiter girls are always getting people into
trouble. But I beg pardon--I should say "ladies," not "girls." I learned
this lesson "in the days when I went gypsying," which was a long time
ago. I said to one of these self-important hags, "Mary, or Julia,
or whatever your name may be, who is that old slab singing at the
piano--the girl with the 'bile' on her nose?" Her eyes snapped. "You
call her girl!--you shall find out yourself--she is a lady, if you
please!" They are all "ladies," and they take it as an insult when they
are called anything else. It was one of these charming ladies who got
shot, by an ass of a lover from the wilds of Arizona, yesterday in the
Thunderboldt Saloon, but unhappily not killed. The fellow had enjoyed so
long the society of ill-favored squaws who have to be scraped before one
can tell the color of their complexions, that he was easily carried
away with the well seasoned charms of "French Mary" of the Thunderboldt
Saloon, and got so "spooney" in his attentions that he hung around her
night after night, and breathed her garlicky sighs with ecstasy. But
no man can be honored with a beer girl's society without paying for
it. French Mary made this man Vernon buy basket after basket of cheap
champagne and got a heavy commission, which is usually their privilege;
in the saloon her company always cost him five or ten dollars an hour,
and she was doubtless a still more expensive luxury out of it.

It is said that he was always insisting upon her marrying him, and
threatening to leave and go back to Arizona if she did not. She could
not afford to let the goose go until he was completely plucked, and so
she would consent, and set the day, and then the poor devil, in a burst
of generosity, would celebrate the happy event with a heavy outlay
of cash. This ruse was played until it was worn out, until Vernon's
patience was worn out, until Vernon's purse was worn out also. Then
there was no use in humbugging the poor numscull any longer, of course;
and so French Mary deserted him, to wait on customers who had cash--the
unfeeling practice always observed by lager beer ladies under similar
circumstances. She told him she would not marry him or have anything
more to do with him, and he very properly tried to blow her brains out.
But he was awkward, and only wounded her dangerously. He killed himself,
though, effectually, and let us hope that it was the wisest thing he
could have done, and that he is better off now, poor fellow.

Territorial Enterprise, December 16-17, 1865

[extract of original letter dated December 13--pertaining to theater
critics and the upcoming visit of Edwin Forrest]

San Francisco Letter


These mosquitoes would swarm around him and bleed dramatic imperfections
from him by the column. With their accustomed shameless presumption,
they would tear the fabric of his well earned reputation to rags,
and call him a poor, cheap humbug and an overrated concentration
of mediocrity...They would always wind up their long-winded
"critiques"--these promoted newsboys and shoemakers would--with the
caustic, the cutting, the withering old stand-by which they have used
with such blighting effect on so many similar occasions, to wit: "If Mr.
Forrest calls that sort of thing acting--very well; but we must inform
him, that although it may answer in other places, it will not do
here..." Their grand final shot is always a six-hundred pounder, and
always comes in the same elegant phraseology: they would pronounce Mr.
Forrest a "bilk!" You cannot tell me anything about these ignorant asses
who do up what is called "criticism" hereabouts--I know them "by the

Territorial Enterprise, December 1865


One may easily find room to abuse as many as several members of Chief
Burke's civilian army for laziness and uselessness, but the detective
department is supplied with men who are sharp, shrewd, always on the
alert and always industrious. It is only natural that this should be so.
An ordinary policeman is chosen with especial reference to large stature
and powerful muscle, and he only gets $125 a month, but the detective is
chosen with especial regard to brains, and the position pays better than
a lucky faro-bank. A shoemaker can tell by a single glance at a boot
whose shop it comes from, by some peculiarity of workmanship; but to
a bar-keeper all boots are alike; a printer will take a number of
newspaper scraps, that show no dissimilarity to each other, and name the
papers they were cut from; to a man who is accustomed to being on
the water, the river's surface is a printed book which never fails to
divulge the hiding place of the sunken rock, or betray the presence of
the treacherous shoal. In ordinary men, this quality of detecting
almost imperceptible differences and peculiarities is acquired by long
practice, and goes not beyond the limits of their own occupation--but in
the detective it is an instinct, and discovers to him the secret signs
of all trades, and the faint shades of difference between things which
look alike to the careless eye.

Detective Rose can pick up a chicken's tail feather in Montgomery street
and tell in a moment what roost it came from at the Mission; and if the
theft is recent, he can go out there and take a smell of the premises
and tell which block in Sacramento street the Chinaman lives in who
committed it, by some exquisite difference in the stink left, and which
he knows to be peculiar to one particular block of buildings.

Mr. McCormick, who should be on the detective force regularly, but as
yet is there only by brevet, can tell an obscene photograph by the back,
as a sport tells an ace from a jack.

Detective Blitz can hunt down a transgressing hack-driver by some
peculiarity in the style of his blasphemy.

The forte of Lees and Ellis, is the unearthing of embezzlers and
forgers. Each of these men are best in one particular line, but at the
same time they are good in all. And now we have Piper, who takes a cake,
dropped in the Lick House by a coat-thief, and sits down to read it as
another man would a newspaper. It informs him who baked the cake; who
bought it; where the purchaser lives; that he is a Mexican; that his
name is Salcero; that he is a thief by profession--and then Piper
marches away two miles, to the Presidio, and grabs this foreigner, and
convicts him with the cake that cannot lie, and makes him shed his boots
and finds $200 in greenbacks in them, and makes him shuck himself
and finds upon him store of stolen gold. And so Salcero goes to the
station-house. The detectives are smart, but I remarked to a friend
that some of the other policemen were not. He said the remark was
unjust--that those "other policemen were as smart as they could afford
to be for $125 a month." It was not a bad idea. Still, I contend that
some of them could not afford to be Daniel Websters, maybe, for any
amount of money.


Ah, but Fitz Smythe can be severe when it suits his humor. He knocks
"Outcroppings" as cold as a wedge in his last "Amigo" letter to the Gold
Hill News, in a single paragraph--yet it cost you a whole page of the
Enterprise to express your disapprobation of that volume of poems. He
says, "The contents are of course suited to the capacity of children
only." This will make those Eastern papers feel mighty bad, because
several of them have spoken highly of the book and thought it was
written for men and women to read.

But I attach no weight to Smythe's criticisms, because he don't know
anything about polite literature; he has had no experience in it further
than to write up runaway horse items for the Alta and act as Private
Secretary to Emperor Norton. And even in the latter capacity he has
never composed the Emperor's proclamations; his duties extended no
further than to copy them for the Gold Hill News, and anybody could do
that. As for poetry, he never wrote but two poems in his life. One was
entitled, "The Dream of Norton I, Emperor," which was tolerably good,
but not as good as the "Chandos Picture," and the other was one which he
composed when the news came of the assassination of the President. This
latter effort was bad, but I do not really think he knows it, else why
should he feel so injured because it was not inserted in "Outcroppings"?
But perhaps it is not fair in me thus to pass judgment upon that poem,
when possibly I am no more competent to discern poetical merit or
demerit than I conceive him to be himself. Therefore, rather than do
Fitz Smythe an unintentional injustice, I will quote one verse from
the poem which I have called "bad," and leave the people to endorse my
criticism or reject it, as shall seem unto them best:


Gone! gone! gone!

Forever and forever! Gone! gone! gone! The tidings ne'er shall sever!
Gone! gone! gone! Wherever! Oh, wherever! Gone! gone! gone! Gone to his


Gone forever! To wherever! Ne'er shall sever! His endeavor! From our
soul's high recompense!

I consider that the chief fault in this poem is that it is
ill-balanced--lop-sided, so to speak. There is too much "gone" in
it, and not enough "forever." I will do the author the credit to say,
however, that there is in it a manifestation of genius of a high order.
It is a dangerous kind of genius, however, as two poets here, gifted
exactly similar, have lately demonstrated--they both transgressed laws
whereof the penalty is capital punishment. I have to be a little severe,
now, because I am a friend to "Outcroppings," and I do not like to see
you and Smythe trying to bring the book into disrepute.

Territorial Enterprise, December 1865

[dated December 20, 1865]


The new swimming bath in South Park is attracting large crowds of
curious visitors, who are anxious to test its virtues, but as yet it is
not quite ready to be thrown open to the public. The great bath-house is
finished, however, and this morning they are ornamenting its ample front
with an immense painting, representing men swimming in all manner
of impossible attitudes. It is as full of gorgeous coloring as a
Presbyterian picture of hell, and is as good as a panorama to look at.
It promises to be a very popular institution. The North Beach and South
Park cars pass directly in front of it.


The eccentric Fourteenth Regulars is the gayest crowd of lads that any
war ever did produce, I suppose. It is funny to read the accounts of
their doings in the papers every day. They are so supremely indifferent
to consequences--or public opinion--or law, or gospel, the police, the
devil, or anything else! Each happy Fourteener sallies forth in a gang
by himself, like Baxter's hog, and in the course of an hour he has
captured a horse, or waylaid a stagecoach, or carried off a showcase,
or devastated a dwelling, or snatched a policeman, or got a hundred and
fifty people corraled in a narrow court, where he guards the sole exit,
and entertains himself by charging on them with his bowie-knife from
time to time, and laughing in his hoarse, stormy way when they stampede.
Oh, they are gay!

I am really sorry to see that Col. Drumn is about to tone down the
exuberance of the Fourteeners, and I am satisfied that my grief is
shared by every reporter in town, for three months ago the press oozed
columns of the most insipid and resultless run-away beer-wagon items;
whereas lately it has scintillated with the most thrilling and readable
exploits and adventures of the Fourteeners. Col. Drumn recommends to the
Commander of the Department the limiting of passes to the issuance of
not more than two at a time--and Chief Burke, I have no doubt, will take
care that the whole police force turns out, armed to the teeth, to look
after these two. The Fourteeners have been accustomed to carnage and
battle in the Eastern wars so long, that they don't mind a small squad
of police at all--look upon such as only a troublesome interruption to
their amusements, but not a positive obstruction.

Territorial Enterprise, December 19-21, 1865

[portion of San Francisco Letter]



The following celebrated artistes have been engaged at a ruinous
expense, and will perform the following truly marvelous feats:

PETE HOPKINS, the renowned Spectre of the Mountains, will walk a tight
rope--the artist himself being tighter than the rope at the time--from
the Cliff House to Seal Rock, and will ride back on the Seal known as
Ben Butler, or the Seal will ride back on him, as circumstances shall

JIM EOFF will exhibit the horse Patchen, and explain why he did not win
the last race.

HARRIS COVEY will exhibit Lodi and Jim Barton, and BILLY WILLIAMSON will
favor the audience with their pedigree and sketches of their history.
N.B.--This will be very entertaining.

JEROME LELAND will exhibit the famous cow, in a circus ring prepared for
the occasion, and perform several feats of perilous cowmanship on her

COMMODORE PERRY CHILDS will take a drink--the weather permitting. This
was to have been done by another acrobat, but he is out of practice, and
Mr. Childs has kindly volunteered in his place.

MICHAEL REESE will dance the Stock Gallopade, in which fine exhibition
he will be assisted by several prominent brokers.

After which JUDGE BRYAN will sing two verses of "Neapolitaine"--by

The whole to conclude with the grand tableau of the "Children in the
Wood"--Children in the Wood: Emperor Norton and the Spectre of the

Territorial Enterprise, December 22-23, 1865


The talk occasioned by Maguire's unseemly castigation of Macdougall,
while the latter was engaged in conversation with a lady, was dying out,
happily for both parties, but Mr. Macdougall has set it going again by
bringing that suit of his for $5,000 for the assault and battery. If he
can get the money, I suppose that is at least the most profitable method
of settling the matter. But then, will he? Maybe so, and maybe not. But
if he feels badly--feels hurt--feels disgraced at being chastised, will
$5,000 entirely soothe him and put an end to the comments and criticisms
of the public? It is questionable. If he would pitch in and whale
Maguire, though, it would afford him real, genuine satisfaction, and
would also furnish me with a great deal more pleasing material for
a paragraph than I can get out of the regular routine of events
that transpire in San Francisco--which is a matter of still greater
importance. If the plaintiff in this suit of damages were to intimate
that he would like to have a word from me on this subject, I would
immediately sit down and pour out my soul to him in verse. I would tune
up my muse and sing to him the following pretty


Come, now, Macdougall! Say--Can lucre pay For thy dismembered coat--
Thy strangulated throat--Thy busted bugle? Speak thou! poor W. J.!
And say--I pray--If gold can soothe your woes, Or mend your tattered
clothes, Or heal your battered nose, Oh bunged-up lump of clay!
No!--arise! Be wise! Macdougall, d--n your eyes! Don't legal quips
devise To mend your reputation, And efface the degradation Of a blow
that's struck in ire! But 'ware of execration, Unless you take your
station In a strategic location, In mood of desperation, And "lam" like
all creation This infernal Tom Maguire!

Territorial Enterprise, December 24 or 26, 1865

[portion of letter]

San Francisco Letter



[discusses recent problems with local judge--text not available]


The following fine Christmas poem appears in the Alta of this morning,
in the unostentatious garb of an editorial. This manner of "setting it"
robs it of half its beauty. I will arrange it as blank verse, and then
it will read much more charmingly:


"The Holidays are approaching. We hear Of them and see their signs every
day. The children tell you every morn How long it is until the glad New
Year. The pavements all are covered o'er With boxes, which have arrived
Per steamer and are being unpacked In anticipation sweet, of an unusual
demand. The windows of the shops Montgomery street along, Do brilliant
shine With articles of ornament and luxury; The more substantial goods,
Which eleven months now gone The place have occupied, Having been put
aside for a few revolving weeks, Silks, satins, laces, articles of gold
and silver, Jewels, porcelains from Sevres, And from Dresden; Bohemian
and Venetian glass, Pictures, engravings, Bronzes of the finest
workmanship And price extravagant, attract The eye at every step Along
the promenades of fashion. The hotels With visitors are crowded, who
have come From the ultimate interior to enjoy Amusements metropolitan,
or to find A more extensive market, and prices lower For purchases,
than country towns afford. Abundant early rains a prosperous year Have
promised--and the dry And sunny weather which prevailed hath For two
weeks past, doth offer Facilities profound for coming to the city, And
for enjoyment after getting here. The ocean beach throughout the day,
And theatres, in shades of evening, show A throng of strangers glad
residents as well. All appearances do indicate That this blithe time
of holiday In San Francisco will Be one of liveliness unusual, and
brilliancy withal!"

[Exit Chief Editor, bowing low--impressive music.]

I cannot admire the overstrong modesty which impels a man to compose
a stately anthem like that and run it together in the solid
unattractiveness of a leading editorial.


This morning's Alta is brilliant. The fine poem I have quoted is
coppered by a scintillation of Fitz Smythe's in the same column. He
calls the thieving scalliwags of the Fourteenth Infantry "niptomaniacs."
That is not bad considering that it much more intelligently describes
their chief proclivity than "kleptomaniac" describes the weakness of
another kind of thieves. The merit of this effort ranks so high that it
is a mercy it is only a smart remark instead of a joke--otherwise Fitz
Smythe must have perished, and instantly. For fear that this remark may
be obscure to some persons I will explain by informing the public that
the soothsayers were called in at the time of Fitz Smythe's birth, and
they read the stars and prophecied that he was destined to lead a long
and eventful life, and to arrive to great distinction for his untiring
industry in endeavoring, for the period of near half a century, to get
off a joke. They said that many times during his life the grand end and
aim of his existence would seem to be in his reach, and his mission
on earth on the point of being fulfilled; but again and again bitter
disappointment would overtake him; what promised so fairly to be a joke
would come forth still-born; but he would rise superior to despair and
make new and more frantic efforts. And these wise men said that in the
evening of his life, when hope was well nigh dead with him, he would
some day, all unexpectedly to himself, and likewise to the world,
produce a genuine joke, and one of marvelous humor--and then his head
would cave in, and his bowels be rent asunder, and his arms and his
legs would drop off and he would fall down and die in dreadful agony.
"Niptomaniac" is a felicitous expression, but God be thanked it is not
a joke. If it had been, it would have killed him--the mission of Armand
Leonidas Fitz Smythe would have been accomplished.


The last news from Frank Mayo will be gratifying to his host of friends
and admirers in California and Nevada. His rank is "Stock Star," and
he plays the leading characters in heavy pieces, and, the Boston papers
say, plays them as well as is done by any great actor in America, and
make no exceptions. He traveled through the chief cities with the Keans,
starring by himself in afterpieces, and playing with the Keans when
there was no afterpiece--taking such parts as "Henry VIII." The
Philadelphia papers said the Keans were very well, but Mr. Mayo was the
best actor in the lot!

Louis Aldrich, in his new Boston engagement, will take high rank also,
and play "first old man" and such characters. He will do well in the
East. You never saw a man make such striding advances in professional
excellence as Aldrich has done since he first played in Virginia.
He "holds over" Mayo in one respect--he will study, and study hard,
too--and Mayo won't.


In an editorial setting forth the palpable fact that California and
Nevada are cutting their own throats by their mistaken sagacity
in hanging on to their double-eagle circulating medium, instead of
smoothing the way for the adoption of greenbacks as our currency, the
Flag touches upon several matters of immediate interest to Washoe, and I
make an extract:

In the large city of Virginia, the San Francisco system of moneyed
exclusiveness prevails completely. Two or three usurers have taken
advantage of the necessities of the community and, upon loans at
exorbitant interest, obtained some sort of possession of nearly all of
the real estate and house property in the city. The Bank of
California through its various connections, has worked itself into
the proprietorship of the most valuable mines, and this has been
accomplished by first depreciating the stock and then buying it under
the stress of "a stock panic." Men who cannot sustain the depreciation,
maintain their credit and transact their business independent of a high
value of their mining stock, must yield in order to ease their fall, and
then, as they become ruined, they witness the outrage of their ruin, and
retire in despair from enterprise and competition. The stock market has
lately been unusually depressed. The California speculators and Specific
Contract fellows of the two States have caused the depression, and now,
having absorbed nearly all of the mining property, they are preparing to
create a "revival" of stock speculation whereby they will again deceive
the public, realize enormous sums and effect new ruin in every direction
but their own.


I do not know why I should head these two items from the Call
"personal," but I do:

THE "TERRITORIAL ENTERPRISE."--This admirably conducted paper has
entered on its eighth year of existence.

CHANGED.--The Virginia Union has changed from a morning to an evening
paper. It manifests a restlessness which may precede speedy dissolution.


A French broker on Montgomery street quarreled with his rival in a
tender affair, the other day, and a challenge passed, and was accepted.
The seconds determined to merely load the pistols with blank cartridges,
and have some fun out of the matter; but they got to drinking rather
freely, ran all night, and when the party arrived on the dueling ground,
at early dawn, the seconds were not sober enough to act their part
with sufficient gravity to carry their plan through successfully. The
principals discovered that they were being trifled with, and indignantly
left the ground. I could get no names. All I could find out was that the
seconds were two well-known "sports," that the challenge was sent and
accepted in good faith, and that one of the principals was a broker.


The Alta is most unusually and astonishingly brilliant this morning. I
cannot do better than give it space and let it illumine your columns. It
lets off a level column of editorial to prove that bees eat clover;
mice eat bees; cats eat mice; cats bask in the sun; the spots on the sun
derange the electric currents; that derangement produces earthquakes;
earthquakes make cold weather; and the bees, and the mice, and the
cats, and the spots on the sun, and the electric currents, and the
earthquakes, and the cold weather, mingling together in one grand fatal
combination, produce cholera! Listen to the Alta:

We know that we have sometimes to go a long way around to trace an
effect to its cause. Darwin, in "The Origin of Species," states a fact
which may be used with advantage in illustration, viz.: The presence of
a large number of cats in a village is favorable to the spread of red
clover. The reader will at once exclaim--what on earth can cats have
to do with that species of the genus trifolium? The answer is--the
humble-bee, by a peculiarity of its organization, can alone extract
the nectar from the flower of the red clover. In passing from flower
to flower it conveys the pollen necessary for the fertilization and
consequent spread of the plant. The field mice prey upon the humble-bee,
break up its nests, and eat its stores of honey, while the cats destroy
the mice; hence it follows that in the natural propagation of the plant
in question, the feline tribe perform an important part. Bearing such
curious revelations as these in mind, it is easy enough to present a
theory to cover the case of mother earth at this time, namely: that the
spots on the face of the sun derange the electric currents of the earth;
that the derangement of the electric currents produces earthquakes; that
earthquakes contribute to cold weather, by permitting the escape of some
of the caloric of the interior of the globe, and that all these changes,
in some way, are the cause of the rinder-pest and cholera.

Solomon's wisdom was foolishness to this.


Territorial Enterprise, December 26-27, 1865

[portion of San Francisco Letter written December 23, 1865]


A Mr. P. M. Scoofy, of this city, has been raising oysters for two years
past, on the Mexican coast, and his first harvest--eight tons--arrived
yesterday on the John L. Stephens. They arrived in admirable
condition--finer and fatter than they were when they started; for
oysters enjoy traveling, and thrive on it; and they learn a good deal
more on a flying trip than George Marshall did, and nearly as much
as some other Washoe European tourists I could mention, but they are
dignified and do not gabble about it so much. I would rather have the
society of a traveled oyster than that of George Marshall, because
I would not hesitate to show my displeasure if that oyster were to
suddenly become gay and talkative, and say: "I was in England, you know,
by G--; I went up to Liverpool and there I took the cars and went
to London, by _____ _____; I been in Pall Mall, and Cheapside, and
Whitefriars, and all them places--been in all of 'em: I been in the
Tower of London, and seen all them d--d armors and things they used to
wear in an early day; I hired a feller for a shil'n', and he took me all
around there and showed me the whole hell-fired arrangement, you know,
by G--; and I give him a glass of of'n-of, as they call it, and he jus'
froze to me. You show one of them fellers the color of a bit, and he'll
stay with you all day, by _____ _____. And I went to Rome--that ain't
no slouch of a town, you know--and old? _____ _____! you bet your life.
There ain't anything like it in this country--you can't put up any idea
how it is; you can't tell a d--d thing about Rome 'thout you see it,
by. And I been to Paris--Parree, French call it--you never hear them say
Parriss--they would laugh if they was to hear any body call it Parriss,
you know. I was there three weeks. I was on the Pong-Nuff, and I been
to the Pal-lay Ro-yoll and the Tweeleree, all them d--d places, and the
Boolyver and the Boys dee Bullone. I stood there in the Boys dee Bullone
and see old Loois Napoleon and his wife come by in his carrage--I was as
close to him as from here to that counter there, by G--; I see him take
his hat off and bow to them whoopin' French bilks by _____ _____; I
stood right there that close--as close as that counter when he went by;
I was close enough to a spit in his face if I'd been a mind to, by Hell,
a feller might live here a million years, and what would he ever see,
by G-d. Parree's the place--style, there, you know--people got money,
there, by _____ _____. Let's take a drink, by G--." I wouldn't let a
traveled oyster inflict that sort of thing on me, you understand, and
refer to the Deity, and to the Savior by his full name, to verify every
other important statement. I would rather have the oyster's company than
Marshall's when his reminiscences are big within him, but the moment I
received the information that "I been to Europe, and all them places, by
G--," I would start that oyster on a journey that would astonish it more
than all the wonders of "Parree" and "all them d--d places" combined.

I have forgotten what I was going to say about Mr. Scoofy and his
Mexican oyster farm, but it don't matter. The main thing is that he
will hereafter endeavor to keep this market supplied with his delicious
marine fruit; and another great point is that his Mexican oysters are
as far superior to the poor little insipid things we are accustomed
to here, as is the information furnished by Alexander Von Humboldt
concerning foreign lands to that which one may glean from George
Marshall in the course of a brief brandy-punch tournament.


San Francisco is a city of startling events. Happy is the man whose
destiny it is to gather them up and record them in a daily newspaper!
That sense of conferring benefit, profit and innocent pleasure upon
one's fellow-creatures which is so cheering, so calmly blissful to the
plodding pilgrim here below, is his, every day in the year. When he gets
up in the morning he can do as old Franklin did, and say, "This day,
and all days, shall be unselfishly devoted to the good of my
fellow-creatures--to the amelioration of their condition--to the
conferring of happiness upon them--to the storing of their minds with
wisdom which shall fit them for their struggle with the hard world,
here, and for the enjoyment of a glad eternity hereafter. And thus
striving, so shall I be blessed!" And when he goes home at night, he can
exult and say: "Through the labors of these hands and this brain, which
God hath given me, blessed and wise are my fellow-creatures this day!

"I have told them of the wonder of the swindling of the friend of Bain,
the unknown Bain from Petaluma Creek, by the obscure Catharine McCarthy,
out of $300--and told it with entertaining verbosity in half a column.

"I have told them that Christmas is coming, and people go strangely
about, buying things--I have said it in forty lines.

"I related how a vile burglar entered a house to rob, and actually
went away again when he found he was discovered. I told it briefly, in
thirty-five lines.

"In forty lines I told how a man swindled a Chinaman out of a couple of
shirts, and for fear the matter might seem trivial, I made a pretense
of only having mentioned it in order to base upon it a criticism upon a
grave defect in our laws.

"I fulminated again, in a covert way, the singular conceit that
Christmas is at hand, and said people were going about in the most
unaccountable way buying stuff to eat, in the markets--52 lines.

"I glorified a fearful conflagration that came so near burning
something, that I shudder even now to think of it. Three thousand
dollars worth of goods destroyed by water--a man then went up and
put out the fire with a bucket of water. I puffed our fine fire
organization--64 lines.

"I printed some other extraordinary occurrences--runaway horse--28
lines; dog fight--30 lines; Chinaman captured by officer Rose for
stealing chickens--90 lines; unknown Chinaman dead on Sacramento
steamer--5 lines; several 'Fourteener' items, concerning people
frightened and boots stolen--52 lines; case of soldier stealing a
washboard worth fifty cents--three-quarters of a column. Much other
wisdom I disseminated, and for these things let my reward come

And his reward will come hereafter--and I am sorry enough to think it.
But such startling things do happen every day in this strange city!--and
how dangerously exciting must be the employment of writing them up for
the daily papers!


I spoke to you a day or two ago about the terrific panorama with
which the proprietors of the new swimming baths out at South Park have
glorified the ample front of their building by way of a sign. It
never entered my head that any one's modesty would be shocked by that
distressing caricature, but we live to learn, and I was mistaken. Some
of the citizens of that vicinage complain that the picture is obscene,
and they have taken steps to present it before the proper authorities as
a nuisance! Oh, but this is air-drawn delicacy!

The dreadful picture is about thirty feet long and eight or ten
feet wide. It is painted in defiance of all rules of art and the
possibilities of nature. It represents a square tank as large as a
plaza, and surrounded by long bulkheads of highly ornamental bath-room
doors, after the fashion of steamboat cabin architecture. At one end a
fountain squirts a vast spray of water into the air. Here and there men
are seen jumping from spring-boards into the great tank; other men are
swimming about in all sorts of attitudes except natural and passable
ones. Two bald-headed patriarchs are skylarking around a small boat
like a pair of schoolboys. Expensively dressed men are seen coming in
to bathe, and other expensively dressed gentlemen are seen leaving the
place after having performed their ablutions. The swimmers are the ones
the fastidious South Parkers object to. Yet they make exactly the same
appearance in that picture that daring equestrians and acrobats do in
the circus bills. They are dressed about the loins in an exceedingly
short pair of pantaloons, and the remainder of their bodies is naked
or clad in tights--it is impossible to determine which. Their legs look
like prize carrots, though this is not a good flesh color; wherefore I
think the bath man will be able to demonstrate, on his trial, that his
model artists are necessarily dressed in tights, since nature never
painted human legs of such a preposterous color. This will establish the
fact that his sign is not indelicate, and he will be allowed to go free
and be no further molested. You only need to look once at that barbarous
piece of mud-daubing to appreciate the absurdity of any one's modesty
being offended by it. I have no doubt all those who are complaining
of this sign went to see the Menken play Mazeppa in her much scantier
attire, and blushed not.

Territorial Enterprise, December 10-31, 1865

[portion of San Francisco Letter]


One would hardly expect to receive a neat, voluntary compliment from so
grave an institution as the United States Revenue Office, but such has
been my good fortune. I have not been so agreeably surprised in many a
day. The Revenue officers, in a communication addressed to me, fondle
the flattering fiction that I am a man of means, and have got "goods,
chattels and effects"--and even "real estate!" Gentlemen, you couldn't
have paid such a compliment as that to any man who would appreciate it
higher, or be more grateful for it than myself. We will drink together,
if you object not.

I am taxed on my income! This is perfectly gorgeous! I never felt so
important in my life before. To be treated in this splendid way, just
like another William B. Astor! Gentlemen, we must drink.

Yes, I am taxed on my income. And the printed paper which bears
this compliment--all slathered over with fierce-looking written
figures--looks as grand as a steamboat's manifest. It reads thus:



Name--M. Twain

Residence--At Large

List and amount of tax--$31.25



Total amount--$36.82

Date--November 20, 1865.


Deputy Collector.

Please present this at the Collector's office."

Now I consider that really handsome. I have got it framed beautifully,
and I take more pride in it than any of my other furniture. I trust
it will become an heirloom and serve to show many generations of my
posterity that I was a man of consequence in the land--that I was also
the recipient of compliments of the most extraordinary nature from high
officers of the national government.

On the other side of this complimentary document I find some happy blank
verse headed "Warrant," and signed by the poet "Frank Soule, Collector
of Internal Revenue." Some of the flights of fancy in this Ode are
really sublime, and show with what facility the poetic fire can render
beautiful the most unpromising subject. For instance: "You are hereby
commanded to distrain upon so much of the goods, chattels and effects of
the within named person, if any such can be found, etc." However, that
is not so much a flight of fancy as a flight of humor. It is a fine
flight, though, anyway. But this one is equal to anything in Shakspeare:
"But in case sufficient goods, chattels and effects cannot be found,
then you are hereby commanded to seize so much of the real estate of
said person as may be necessary to satisfy the tax." There's poetry for
you! They are going to commence on my real estate. This is very rough.
But then the officer is expressly instructed to find it first. That is
the saving clause for me. I will get them to take it all out in real
estate. And then I will give them all the time they want to find it in.

But I can tell them of a way whereby they can ultimately enrich the
Government of the United States by a judicious manipulation of this
little bill against me--a way in which even the enormous national debt
may be eventually paid off! Think of it! Imperishable fame will be the
reward of the man who finds a way to pay off the national debt without
impoverishing the land; I offer to furnish that method and crown these
gentlemen with that fadeless glory. It is so simple and plain that a
child may understand it. It is thus: I perceive that by neglecting to
pay my income tax within ten days after it was due, I have brought upon
myself a "penalty" of three dollars and twelve cents extra tax for that
ten days. Don't you see?--let her run! Every ten days, $3.12; every
month of 31 days, $10; every year, $120; every century, $12,000; at the
end of a hundred thousand years, $1,200,000,000 will be the interest
that has accumulated...

Territorial Enterprise, December 1865


If I were Police Judge here, I would hold my court in the city prison
and sentence my convicts to imprisonment in the present Police Court
room. That would be capital punishment--it would be the Spartan doom
of death for all crimes, whether important or insignificant. The Police
Court room, with its deadly miasma, killed Judge Shepheard and Dick
Robinson, the old reporter, and will kill Judge Rix, and Fitz Smythe
also. The papers are just now abusing the police room--a thing which
they do in concert every month. This time, however, they are more than
usually exercised, because somebody has gone and built a house right
before the only window the room had, and so it is midnight there during
every hour of the twenty-four, and gas has to be burned while all other
people are burning daylight.

That Police Court room is not a nice place. It is the infernalest
smelling den on earth, perhaps. A deserted slaughter-house, festering
in the sun, is bearable, because it only has one smell, albeit it is
a lively one; a soap-factory has its disagreeable features, but the
soap-factory has but one smell, also; to stand to leeward of a sweating
negro is rough, but even a sweating negro has but one smell; the salute
of the playful polecat has its little drawbacks, but even the playful
polecat has but one smell, and you can bury yourself to the chin in damp
sand and get rid of the odor eventually. Once enter the Police Court
though--once get yourself saturated with the fearful combination of
miraculous stenches that infect its atmosphere, and neither sand nor
salvation can ever purify you any more! You will smell like a polecat,
like a slaughter-house, like a soap-factory, like a sweating negro, like
a graveyard after an earthquake--for all time to come--and you will have
a breath like a buzzard. You enter the door of the Police Court, and
your nostrils are saluted with an awful stench; you think it emanates
from Mr. Hess, the officer in charge of the door; you say to yourself,
"Some animal has crawled down this poor man's throat and died"; you
step further in, and you smell the same smell, with another, still more
villainous, added to it; you remark to yourself, "This is wrong--very
wrong; these spectators ought to have been buried days ago." You go a
step further and you smell the same two smells, and another more ghastly
than both put together; you think it comes from the spectators on the
right. You go further and a fourth, still more powerful, is added to
your three horrible smells; and you say to yourself, "These lawyers are
too far gone--chloride of lime would be of no benefit here." One more
step, and you smell the Judge; you reel, and gasp; you stagger to the
right and smell the Prosecuting Attorney--worse and worse; you stagger
fainting to the left, and your doom is sealed; you enter the fatal blue
mist where ten reporters sit and stink from morning until night--and
down you go! You are carried out on a shutter, and you cannot stay in
the same room with yourself five minutes at a time for weeks.

You cannot imagine what a horrible hole that Police Court is. The
cholera itself couldn't stand it there. The room is about 24 x 40 feet
in size, I suppose, and is blocked in on all sides by massive brick
walls; it has three or four doors, but they are never opened--and if
they were they only open into airless courts and closets anyhow; it has
but one window, and now that is blocked up, as I was telling you; there
is not a solitary air-hole as big as your nostril about the whole place.
Very well; down two sides of the room, drunken filthy loafers, thieves,
prostitutes, China chicken-stealers, witnesses, and slimy guttersnipes
who come to see, and belch and issue deadly smells, are banked and
packed, four ranks deep--a solid mass of rotting, steaming corruption.
In the centre of the room are Dan Murphy, Zabriskie, the Citizen Sam
Platt, Prosecuting Attorney Louderback, and other lawyers, either of
whom would do for a censer to swing before the high altar of hell. Then,
near the Judge are a crowd of reporters--a kind of cattle that did never
smell good in any land. The house is full--so full that you have
to actually squirm and shoulder your way from one part of it to
another--and not a single crack or crevice in the walls to let in one
poor breath of God's pure air! The dead, exhausted, poisoned atmosphere
looks absolutely blue and filmy, sometimes--did when they had a little
daylight. Now they have only gas-light and the added heat it brings.
Another Judge will die shortly if this thing goes on.

Territorial Enterprise, December 1865

[written December 29, 1865]


Louderback, Prosecuting Attorney in the Police Court, has discovered
something at last. How it thrills me to think of it! For two long years
I have waited patiently for that man to discover something, and he never
could do it. He has always gone through with his same old formula, in
every case before the Court, and has never shown any inclination
to branch out into anything fresh. That formula was as follows: Mr.
Louderback addresses the witness:

"Did this all happen in the city'n county of San Francisco?"


L.--"You are sure of that, now?"

W--"Yes, sure."

L.--(With severity)--"Remember, you are on your oath--we can't have any
prevarication here. You are certain it all happened in the city'n county
of San Francisco?"

W--"Yes; certain. I know it did."

L.--(To witness)--"That'll do--set down" (To Judge)--"Your honor,
I don't think there is any use in hearing the evidence on the other
side--the defendant appears to be guilty."

As long as he flows along comfortably in that regular old groove of his,
Louderback is bound to succeed--is bound to succeed as well as he ever
has done. And why he should suddenly bulge out and go to "discovering"
things in this startling and unexpected manner, is a mystery to me, and
must be a source of distress and uneasiness to his nurse. But here is
what the Call says:

A practice has obtained in the Police Court, which will no doubt
convince the public that San Francisco practitioners are as shrewd as
'Philadelphia lawyers.' It is a habit certain attorneys have of engaging
to defend a person charged with some petty offense, and getting some
other person to represent them, while they state to the Court that
they are retained on behalf of the prosecution, and then have the Court
dismiss the case without investigation, by stating there is no prospect
of obtaining a conviction, and that the time of the Court would be
needlessly occupied. The Prosecuting Attorney has discovered the dodge,
and will hereafter resist all such motions.

"The Prosecuting Attorney has discovered the dodge"--the Prosecuting
Attorney discovered it! Good God!

Territorial Enterprise, December 31, 1865

[portion of San Francisco Letter written December 28, 1865]


Some one (I do not know who,) left me a card photograph, yesterday,
which I do not know just what to do with. It has the names of Dan De
Quille, W. M. Gillespie, Alf. Doten, Robert Lowery and Charles A. Parker
on it, and appears to be a pictured group of notorious convicts, or
something of that kind. I only judge by the countenances, for I am not
acquainted with these people, and do not usually associate with such
characters. This is the worst lot of human faces I have ever seen. That
of the murderer Doten, (murderer, isn't he?) is sufficient to chill the
strongest heart. The cool self-possession of the burglar Parker marks
the man capable of performing deeds of daring confiscation at dead of
night, unmoved by surrounding perils. The face of the Thug, De Quille,
with its expression of pitiless malignity, is a study. Those of the
light fingered gentry, Lowery and Gillespie, show that ineffable repose
and self-complacency so deftly assumed by such characters after having
nipped an overcoat or a pair of brass candlesticks and are aware that
officers have suspected and are watching them. I am very glad to have
this picture to keep in my room, as a hermit keeps a skull, to remind me
what I may some day become myself. I have permitted the Chief of Police
to take a copy of it, for obvious reasons.

Territorial Enterprise, January 1866


There was a good deal of visiting done here on New Year's Day. The air
was balmy and spring-like, and the day was in every way suited to that
sort of business. I say business, because it is more like business
than pleasure when you call at a house where all are strangers, and the
majority of one's New Year's Calls are necessarily of that description.
You soon run through the list of your personal friends--and that part of
the day's performances affords you genuine satisfaction--and then Smith
comes along and puts you through your paces before a hundred people who
treat you kindly, but whom you dare not joke with. You can be as easy
and comfortable as a mud-turtle astraddle of a sawyer, but you must
observe some show of decorum--you must behave yourself. It is irksome to
me to behave myself. Therefore, I had rather call on people who know
me and will kindly leave me entirely unrestrained, and simply employ
themselves in looking out for the spoons.

When I started out visiting, at noon, the atmosphere was laden with
a sweet perfume--a grateful incense that told of flowers, and green
fields, and breezy forests far away. But this was only soda-water
sentiment, for I soon discovered that these were the odors of the barber
shop, and came from the heads of small squads of carefully-dressed young
men who were out paying their annual calls.

I took wine at one house and some fruit at another, and after that I
began to yearn for some breakfast. It took me two hours to get it.
A lady had just given me the freedom of her table when a crowd of
gentlemen arrived and my sense of propriety compelled me to destroy
nothing more than a cup of excellent coffee. At the next house I got
no further than coffee again, being similarly interrupted; at the next
point of attack there were too many strange young ladies present, and
at the next and the next, something always happened to interfere with
my arrangements. I do not know, but perhaps it would be better to defer
one's New Year's calls until after breakfast. I did finally corral
that meal, and in the house of a stranger--a stranger, too, who was so
pleasant that I was almost tempted to create a famine in her house.

It used to be customary for people to drink too much in the course of
their annual visits, but few offended in this way on this occasion. I
saw one well-dressed gentleman sitting on the curb-stone, propping his
face between his knees, and clasping his shins with his hands; but he
was the only caller I saw so much discouraged during the whole day.
He said he had started out most too early, and I suppose he was right.
Wisdom teaches us that none but birds should go out early, and that not
even birds should do it unless they are out of worms. Some of the ladies
dressed "in character" on New Year's. I found Faith, Hope and Charity in
one house, dealing out claret punch and kisses to the annual pilgrims.
They had two kinds of kisses--those which you bite and "chaw" and
swallow, and those which you simply taste, and then lick your chops and
feel streaky. The only defect there was in the arrangement was that
you were not permitted to take your choice. Two other ladies personated
Mary, Queen of Scots, and Queen Elizabeth; I also found a Cleopatra and
a Hebe and a Semiramis and a Maria Antoinette; also a Beauty and the
Beast. A young lady, formerly of Carson, was the Beauty, and took the
character well; and I suppose Beecher was the Beast, but he was not
calculated for the part. I think those are very neat compliments for
both parties.

When it came to visiting among strangers, at last, I soon grew tired
and quit. You enter with your friend and are introduced formally to some
formal looking ladies. You bow painfully and wish the party a happy New
Year. You then learn that the party desire that a like good fortune may
fall to your lot. You are invited to sit down, and you do so. About this
time the door-bell rings, and Jones, Brown and Murphy bluster in and
bring the familiar fragrance of the barber shop with them. They are
acquainted. They inquire cordially after the absent members of the
family and the distant relatives of the same, and relate laughable
adventures of the morning that haven't got anything funny about them.
Then they cast up accounts and determine how many calls they have
made and how many they have got to inflict yet. The ladies respond by
exhibiting a balance sheet of their own New Year's Day transactions.
Yourself and your friend are then conducted with funeral solemnity into
the back parlor, where you sip some wine with imposing ceremony. If your
human instincts get the upper hand of you and you explode a joke,
an awful sensation creeps over you such as a man experiences when he
catches himself whistling at a funeral. It is time for you to go, then.

New Year's was pretty generally enjoyed here, up stairs and down. At one
place where I called, a servant girl was needed, for something, and the
bell was rung for her several times without effect. Madame went below
to see what the matter was, and found Bridget keeping "open house" and
entertaining thirteen muscular callers in one batch. Up stairs there had
been only eleven calls received, all told. One chambermaid notified her
mistress that extra help must be procured for New Year's Day, as she and
the cook had made arrangements to keep open house in the kitchen,
and they desired that their visitors should not be discommoded by
interruptions emanating from above stairs. I am told that nearly all
the Biddies in town kept open house. Some of them set finer tables than
their mistresses. The reason was because the latter did not consider
anything more than tea and coffee and cakes necessary for their tables
(being church members) but the former seized upon wines, brandies and
all the hidden luxuries the closets afforded. Some people affect to
think servant girls won't take liberties with people's things, but I
suppose it is a mistake.

[Reprinted in the Golden Era, JAN. 14, 1866.]

Territorial Enterprise, January 1866

[Dated January 8, 1866]


Nigger never spoke truer word. White man is mighty "onsartain." An
instance of it is to be found in the ingenious manipulation of a certain
recent speculation here by a white man whom I have in my mind's eye at

A small swimming bath was constructed out yonder at North Beach, as a
sort of novel experiment, and everybody was surprised to see what a rush
was made to it and what a thriving speculation it at once became. Many a
smart man wished the idea had occurred to him, and then thought no more
about it. Others pondered over it and thought the experiment might
bear repetition, but then there was an uncomfortable possibility of
the reverse proving the case. Mr. Aleck Badlam, late a member of the
California Legislature, but latterly acting in the double capacity of
nephew and business agent to Mr. Samuel Brannan, belonged to the latter
class, but was rather more hopeful, more energetic and more fertile
in expedients than the rest. He went to work and got up a joint stock
association, composed of men with good bank accounts, and announced in
the public prints that this association would immediately commence the
construction of a colossal swimming bath, with all manner of admirable
conveniences and accommodations, away out in Third Street opposite South
Park. Many people went on swimming in the pioneer bath, and many others
in the Bay, and both parties said the new speculation would prove a
disastrous failure, and that they were sorry for the projectors of it,
etc., and then bothered no more about it. In a day or two the local
reporters fell heirs to a refreshing sensation and were made happy--a
genuine shark was harpooned in the Bay of San Francisco! It was brought
to town and was visited by crowds of timid citizens while it lay in
state in the market place. Mr. Badlam went at once to the various
newspaper offices and told the reporters, and was greeted with the
ancient formula: "That's bully--there's pen and ink, write it up for a
fellow, can't you?"--(you know if you walk a mile to accommodate one
of these thieves with an item, he will always impose upon you, with
infernal effrontery, the labor of writing it up for him, if you will
stand it). Mr. Badlam wrote up the shark item. A few days elapsed, the
sensation was cooling down and beginning to be forgotten, when another
shark was harpooned in the Bay and exposed to view in the market. People
shuddered again. Mr. Badlam went and told the reporters; the reporters
got him to write it up. In the course of three days another shark was
harpooned in the Bay and placed on exhibition. People began to show
signs of uneasiness. Mr. Badlam told the reporters and wrote it up.
The new swimming bath was being rushed forward to completion with all
possible dispatch. From this time on, for the next six weeks a
shark cashed in his checks every twenty-four hours in the Bay of
San Francisco. Mr. Badlam discontinued the ceremony of telling the
reporters, but he always came at 1 o'clock in the afternoon with several
slips of manuscript, laid one down on the reporter's table, said "Shark
item," and departed toward the next newspaper office on his regular
beat. People began to say "Why, blame these sharks, the Bay's full of
them--it ain't hardly as healthy to swim there as it used to was"--and
they stopped swimming there. Reporters got to depending on the customary
shark item pretty much as a matter of course, and the printers got to
making these items "fat" by keeping them "standing" and making such
unimportant alterations in them as the variations in the localities of
the shark-killing demanded.

The fact of the business was, that Mr. Badlam, that "onsartain white
man," had imported the old original shark from the coast of Mexico, and
paid some Italian fishermen to take him out in the Bay and harpoon him,
and then fetch him ashore and exhibit him in the market place. It was
all in the way of business; he wanted to discourage bathing in the Bay
and pave the way for the success of his great bath-house scheme at a
later day. It is but just to say that he did make bathing in the
Bay exceedingly unpopular. He imported all his sharks, and he kept
a detachment of shark-killers under regular pay. Sharks come pretty
high--sharks are very expensive and he economized occasionally by having
the same old shark harpooned and exhibited over and over again as long
as he would hang together; and when he had to bring on a fresh one he
would vary the interest in the thing by having the fish captured alive
and towed ashore and exposed to public view in all his native ferocity;
and once he got a number of young pigs killed and scraped clean, towed
a shark out in the Bay, fed the pigs to him, towed him back again and
landed him at the head of the Long Bridge when there were about two
thousand people promenading on it, got a multitude collected around the
spot, killed and cut the shark open, took several chunks of the delicate
white young pork out of its stomach, and then hid his face in his
handkerchief and said with manifest emotion: "Oh God, this fellow's been
eating a child--ah, how sad, how sad!" This culminating stroke of genius
crowned Mr. Badlam's patient, long-continued efforts with a splendid
success--no man has bathed in the Bay since Mr. B. wrote that item up
and travelled his regular newspaper route with it. His labors were over,
the bath-house was nearly finished, and he had nothing but easy sailing
before him from that time forward. In a few days his monstrous tank
was completed and the water turned on, and the very first day he opened
business with a hundred and fifty swimmers an hour on an average, and a
hundred and fifty more standing around in Menken costume waiting for
a chance. There is nothing like trying, you know; and all experience
teaches us that the best way to ascertain a thing is to find it. But
when it comes to believing all the shark items a sagacious strategist
favors you with in the papers, it is well to remember that the wise
nigger saith "white man mighty onsartain."


The Alta of this morning publishes a correct statement of the
embezzlement by young Macy of $39,000 from the mint, and you can copy
it; but there are some little matters in the background which always
come within a correspondent's province in cases of this kind, but which
are usually omitted from the accounts in the local press, and these I
will talk about. Mr. Cheeseman is U.S. Sub Treasurer, and ex officio
treasurer of the mint. Macy, his brother in-law, was his paying
clerk--his cashier. He is a green, gawky young fellow about twenty-four
or--five years old; and by a glance at his gait and the shape of his
head and his general appearance, an experienced business man would judge
his capacity to be about equal to the earning of, say fifty dollars a
month. But he was the Sub-Treasurer's brother-in-law--he was a barnacle,
and had to be provided with a place in the Circumlocution Office,
whether he knew enough to come in out of the rain or not. So he was made
paying clerk, at a salary of $2,500 a year, and placed in a position
where twenty millions in gold coin and oceans of greenbacks passed
through his hands in the course of a year. Mr. Swain, the Superintendent
of the mint, did not fancy this appointment, but it was out of his
jurisdiction. Mr. Cheeseman has the appointing of his own clerks,
although all their reports must be made finally to the Superintendent,
and all their acts come under his supervision.

Naturally there was nothing bad about young Macy, but it is
believed--well, I might go so far as to say it was known--that some
mining speculators got around him and persuaded him to put mint funds
in stocks, promising to "stand behind him." He did so, and they stood
behind him until the crash in stocks warned them to stand some where
else and then they dropped him--having made what they could out of him,
no doubt. He had been speculating on the mint's money six months before
he was found out--the work men occasionally going without their wages
in the meantime because of the lack of supplies. Mr. Swain's suspicions
were first aroused by seeing him so frequently in company with
speculators and hearing so often on the street of his transactions in
heavy stocks. But Macy's books came out right every month and nothing
could be shown against him. One of his thefts was a bold one. The
coiner sent him three "melts" at different times--three batches of gold
coin--two of a hundred thousand dollars each and one of a hundred
and twenty thousand. Each had the usual "tag," describing the amount
contained. Macy removed and tore up the $120,000 "tag," and sent to
the coiner a message that he had lost the tag from one of the $100,000
batches--a thing which sometimes occurs. The coiner sent him the
necessary substitute, and he altered the date and placed the new tag on
the $120,000 "melt"; but he carried off the extra $20,000 first.

At the last quarterly examination the money and the books were all
right, but Macy displayed such distress and trepidation during the
examination that he excited the suspicions of more than one of the mint
officials; he had been shinning around the streets all day long, too,
and it was thought that he had been getting a temporary loan to make his
accounts straight with. Such a rigid surveillance was commenced then,
and so many informal examinations instituted, that Macy finally packed
and ran off. This was in December. The facts of this embezzlement
have only just come to light and its full extent only just now finally
ferreted out and made known to the public, but the Department at
Washington has been kept posted upon the subject by telegraph from time
to time during the last two or three weeks.


Saw two or three dozen invited guests in the new bath and a free
champagne blow-out served up for them in an ante-room. The water was
seven feet deep, and there was 300,000 gallons of it, heated to a
pleasant temperature, barring the cold streaks here and there. Each man
has a little stateroom to himself and a couple of towels. The price of
the baths is one for 25 cents or 3 for a dollar, and you can swim an
hour. Mr. Nash's swimming pupils pay $10 a month or $20 for 3 months,
and bathe whenever they please. There are spring boards, parallel bars,
rings, flying trapeze, ladders--a complete gymnasium--suspended over the
water. Among the swimmers were--but as these individuals are represented
in the panoramic sign on the front of the bath house, I will merely talk
of their portraits and say nothing of their swimming. It is my duty to
explain that sign, because many people imagine it is a fancy sketch, and
are distressed to think any artist would be so depraved as to paint such
impossible figures and faces and elevate the devilish libel in full view
without a word of apology.


In the bath-house sign are very correct likenesses of the chief
stockholders, and are as follows: The fleshy, smiling, bald-headed man
hanging to the middle of the little life boat, is Mr. O. P. Sutton, in
the banking interest. The bald headed man hanging on near the stern of
the boat, is Mr. Aleck Badlam, the shark-fancier. The man on the
left, who is just starting on the spring-board, is Col. Monstery, the
fencing-master. The inverted young man on the bow of the boat who is
performing some kind of extraordinary gymnastic feat and appears to have
got it a little mixed, is Captain McComb. The central figure, swinging
on the trapeze, is Mr. Edward Smith, of the banking interest. The
half-submerged figure diving head-foremost at the right of the central
fountain, is Mr. A. J. Snyder, the carpenter and builder, and is a very
correct portrait as far as it goes. The handsome fat man facing you
from the stateroom door on the extreme left, is Mr. Louis Cohn, and is
considered a masterpiece of portrait painting. I cannot recognize the
stockholder immediately under the spring board on the left, on account
of his truly extraordinary position. It may be Fitz Smythe. The
gentleman who is splashing himself behind the figure in the swing,
and [has] upon his countenance an expression of lively enjoyment, is
Professor Nash. The figure in the swing is most too many for me. It may
be Menken, or it may be Jeff. Davis, or it may be some other man or
some other woman. It is the very picture that so exasperates the South
Parkers. It has got baggy breasts like a squaw, and the hips have the
ample and rounded swell which belong to the female shape; but the head
is masculine. That figure has worried the ladies of South Park a good
deal, and it worries me just as much. I shall have to let this personage
swing on undisturbed, and leave it to a wiser head to determine the
sex and discover the name that belongs to it. It would be very
uncomfortable, now, if it should turn out that I have been mistaken, and
this remarkable picture should never have been intended for a collection
of portraits, after all--in which case I beg pardon.

Territorial Enterprise, January 1866


I have seen some of the beautiful opals they find in Calaveras county
near Mokelumne Hill. Some of them are very handsome. A day or two ago I
was shown an Idaho diamond. It was very pure and brilliant, and was said
to be a genuine diamond, and of the first water. I compared it with
a couple of splendid twenty-five hundred dollar Brazilian diamonds in
Tucker's window which have been dazzling people's eyes and attracting
considerable attention for a few days past, and I could not swear to any
difference. That amounts to something although I am not an expert where
it comes to estimating the value and fineness of diamonds. And now they
are finding superb moss agates and other precious stones on the
river bank right up here at Martinez. This reminds me that there is a
hill-side down the gulch below Aurora, Esmeralda, which is covered with
round, hard, knotty-surfaced little boulders which display the most
beautiful agates when broken open. Might not the Esmeralda people find
it profitable to send a bushel or two of those things to the Eastern
markets? Nobody cared anything about them when I was there three years

Territorial Enterprise, January 1866

[dated January 11, 1866]


By Fitz Smythe!

The usual quiet of our city was rudely broken in upon this morning
by the appearance in the Alta of one of those terrible solid column
romances about the hair-breadth escapes and prodigies of detective
sagacity of the San Francisco police--written by the felicitous
novelist, Fitz Smythe. It is put up in regular chapters, with
sub-headings, as is Fitz Smythe's custom, when he fulminates a stunning

Chapter I. is headed "The Koinickers"--dark and mysterious.

Chapter II. is headed "A New Koinicker in the Field!"--the plot

Then comes Chapter IV.--"The Police after him!"--exciting times.

Chapter V.--"The Decoy Duck?--more mystery.

Chapter VI.--"The New Decoy!"--the red hand of crime begins to

Chapter VII.--"The Arrest! "--startling situation--thunder and
lightning--blue lights burning.

Chapter VIII.--"The 'Queer' Obtained!"--thrilling revelations.

Chapter IX.--"The Conviction!"--closing in, closing in; the wicked are
about to be punished, and the good rewarded.

Chapter X.--"Conclusion." The scattered threads are drawn together into
one woof; the bad characters are sent to prison, to go from thence to
[hell]; detective Lees marries detective Ellis; Chief Burke elevates his
eyes and hands over the two kneeling figures and says unctuously, "God
bless you my children--God bless you!" All the good characters are
happy, even down to Fitz Smythe and his horse--the former in a chance to
go through a Chinese funeral dinner, and the latter in the opportunity
of eating up a tank of warm asphaltum while the workmen are gone to

Oh, but this is a lovely romance! And only think of the subject--the
police! Think of a man going among the police for the hero of a
novel!--unless he wanted a highwayman, or something of that kind.

The romance is gotten up with several objects in view. One is to show
how mean a thing it is to call for investigations of police affairs as
Dr. Rowell is doing; another is to try and bolster up the Grand
Jury's recent "vindication" of the Police Department--the other day--a
"vindication" which the public did not accept with as much confidence
as they would if it had come from Heaven; another is to show that the
stool-pigeon Ned Wellington--"Indian Ned"--who was appointed a special
officer by Burke, is no more of a thief or a rascal than many another
man on the force, and I think that is unjust to Wellington; and another
object--an eternal one with Fitz Smythe--is to glorify his god, the
police. This latter is a disease with him; it breaks out all over the
Alta every day; and it phazes Smythe worse than the small-pox. Even his
horse has become infected by the distemper, and will not bite a police

The unfiligreed facts in Smythe's column romance--or at least the facts
in the case from which the romance was drawn--may be summed up in a
few words, by leaving out the customary adulation of the inspired
detectives: A counterfeiter named Farrell came here from the East; the
police got after him in their bungling style and seared him away; he
went to Virginia, and took $10,000 counterfeit money with him, and
buried it under a house, where your police discovered and captured it;
he returned here and a "decoy duck" was put on his track and appointed
a special policeman--Ned Wellington--or "Smith" as Fitz Smythe with
characteristic delicacy calls him in the romance, though why he should
is not very plain, since Wellington is more notorious than Fitz Smythe
himself. "Smith" was cunning, and trapped Farrell--though of course
Smythe gives all the credit to Lees and Ellis. But now comes more
trouble--"Smith" can show a commission--show that, "reposing especial
confidence in the honesty, integrity," etc., etc., the Police
Commissioners--one of whom was the Police Judge--had appointed him to a
responsible position in the service of the city, and yet his character
is so bad that it will not do to bring him on the stand to testify!
More evidence must be had. Another stool-pigeon is put to work with
"Smith"--one "Robert G. Crawford, the assumed name of a private clerk
of Chief Burke," as Smythe says. [This man's real name was T. B. Fargo,
alias Fogo, alias Howard, alias Crawford, and he was a grand rascal of
considerable note, notwithstanding he was Chief Burke's confidential
clerk.] The two pigeons worked the case through to a successful
conclusion. Farrell's counterfeit money was captured, and Farrell
himself sent to the Penitentiary. As is entirely proper, Fitz Smythe
gives the credit to detective Lees, and glorifies him to the skies.
There is the romance--all there is of it worth knowing or printing--yet
it is turned into a novel of ten distinct chapters, and occupies more
room and flames out with a grander sublimity in the Alta than did the
capture of Richmond and the Southern armies, as published in the same
paper. How marvelous are thy ways, O Lord!


Why shouldn't I print a romance? Why shouldn't I lionize "Smith"
(Ned Wellington), and "Crawford" (T. B. Fargo)? Wouldn't they do for
specimens of our police? I should think so--especially since the
Grand Jury so triumphantly "vindicated" Wellington a few days ago. The
following romance is from the pen of ex-special policeman L. W. Noyes:

Ned Wellington, alias "Indian Ned," is a stool pigeon for Captain Lees,
of the police, and has a commission from the Police Commissioners, as
a secret detective, notwithstanding they all knew of his having been
arrested frequently for various offenses. Ned, with one T. B. Fargo,
[worked on the] case of Wm. Farrell, alias "Minnie Price," the
counterfeiter, who was arrested last January. During Farrell's trial,
in the County Court, Ned was a witness. While on the stand, on the 11th
March, he testified that he had a commission, as above stated, and that
Captain Lees recommended him; thus the commission was retained to
give him authority to carry a pistol for his own defense. On the 24th
December, 1864, Ned (being at the time convivious) shot at a man on Pike
street; he ran down Commercial street, and officer Blitz arrested him in
Con Mooney's, corner of Commercial and Kearny streets. He had thrown the
pistol away behind some barrels--went with Blitz and found it. He was
taken to the station house, where he was charged with assault with a
deadly weapon--bail forfeited. The Call of December 27th says the bail
was fixed at $500 (I wonder if it was found). Ned has said that he
intended to kill the man, and if he had he could have got out of it.
I think he could. On the 11th of March, the facts of Ned having a
commission having come out in Court, naturally worries some of the
police; the Grand Jury have been overhauling some of them. Next day,
the 12th March, Ned was arrested for being implicated in a robbery--was
liberated that night. Next day, the 13th, he left for New York on the
steamer, no doubt fearing that he might be put upon the stand in Grand
Jury rooms. Ned is very shrewd, and he keeps his commission as a sort of
fender to put in upon occasions. Ned's co-worker in the Farrell case (T.
B. Fargo, alias T. B. Faga, alias I. B. Howard) is another of the same
stripe; in the winter of 1864-5, he was an agent for Wells, Fargo &
Co., in some of the Western States, where he was a defaulter. He has
respectable connections East; his brother settled the matter for him,
and started him for California, where he arrived in June; on the passage
he gambled with one Winters and Baker, and lost [$7]00 in greenbacks;
from June until October he peddled Grant pictures; on the 1st of
October, with thirty-seven others, he donned the Police uniform, where
he remained as the Chief's confidential clerk until December 15, at
which time the Supervisors ordered the dismissal; but Fargo was kept
around until Farrell was taken, and I think under pay. All this time
he was living with one Hattie Shaw, a prostitute, at the corner of
Washington and Pike street; he used to wait upon her to the New York
Restaurant for meals, where she paid the bills. Sometimes he carried her
meals to her room. He borrowed some $300 from Hattie, telling her that
he had a draft on Wells, Fargo & Co. for $2,000 which he would get
cashed and pay her. Ned Wellington here comes in and tells Hattie that
he has seen the draft, and that Fargo is a gentleman, etc. But the draft
never came, and Hattie had to go home with him in order to get coin.

After leaving the police force, he, through Captain Lees' influence,
got a place with Donohue & Booth. Fargo represented to them that he was
actually starving, and borrowed $20. Next day he was out riding with
Hattie and got discharged, being there but a week or so. He then
got into Wells, Fargo & Co.'s, during Mr. McLane's sickness, but was
discharged as soon as he recovered.

During all this time the police were well aware of what kind of a man
Fargo was, and there is no reason why the Chief and Commissioners should
not know.

Mr. William McCaffry, who is well known in this city, took pains to tell
them of his doings.

On the 13th of June Fargo went East on the opposition steamer; he bought
tickets in the name of T.B. Howard, and Mrs. Howard, for himself and
Hattie. On the steamer he went by the name of Fargo, and claimed to be
a brother of Fargo, of Wells, Fargo & Co. So you see thieves have the
inside track with Burke & Co.

I think that last remark of my historian, Noyes, is rather severe, but
let it pass.

But I want Fitz Smythe to re-publish another flaming "chapter in the
history of the San Francisco Police," and add the above chapter to it,
and glorify the Chief's confidential clerk Mr. Fargo (not Crawford, Fitz
Smythe,) and Indian Ned Wellington (not "Smith," Fitz Smythe,) and also
Buckingham, whom you scarcely deigned to notice while he was on trial
for gobbling up the widow's jewelry. I don't want all the glory
fastened on the Captains and Chiefs and regulars, and the deeds of the
specials--the scallawags who really do all the work--left unsung. Tune
up another column of [praise of] them, and blast away, idolatrous Fitz

Territorial Enterprise, January 16-18, 1866

[portion of San Francisco letter]


Yesterday, as I was coming along through a back alley, I glanced over a
fence, and there was Fitz Smythe's horse. I can easily understand, now,
why that horse always looks so dejected and indifferent to the things
of this world. They feed him on old newspapers. I had often seen Smythe
carrying "dead loads" of old exchanges up town, but I never suspected
that they were to be put to such a use as this. A boy came up while I
stood there, and said, "That hoss belongs to Mr. Fitz Smythe, and the
old man--that's my father, you know--the old man's going to kill him."

"Who, Fitz Smythe?"

"No, the hoss--because he et up a litter of pups that the old man
wouldn't a taken forty dol--"

"Who, Fitz Smythe?"

"No, the hoss--and he eats fences and everything--took our gate off and
carried it home and et up every dam splinter of it; you wait till he
gets done with them old Altas and Bulletins he's a chawin' on now, and
you'll see him branch out and tackle a-n-y-thing he can shet his mouth
on. Why, he nipped a little boy, Sunday, which was going home from
Sunday school; well, the boy got loose, you know, but that old hoss got
his bible and some tracts, and them's as good a thing as he wants, being
so used to papers, you see. You put anything to eat anywheres, and that
old hoss'll shin out and get it--and he'll eat anything he can bite,
and he don't care a dam. He'd climb a tree, he would, if you was to put
anything up there for him--cats, for instance--he likes cats--he's et up
every cat there was here in four blocks--he'll take more chances--why,
he'll bust in anywheres for one of them fellers; I see him snake a
old tom cat out of that there flower-pot over yonder, where she was
a sunning of herself, and take her down, and she a hanging on and a
grabbling for a holt on some thing, and you could hear her yowl and kick
up and tear around after she was inside of him. You see Mr. Fitz Smythe
don't give him nothing to eat but them old newspapers and sometimes a
basket of shavings, and so you know, he's got to prospect or starve, and
a hoss ain't going to starve, it ain't likely, on account of not wanting
to be rough on cats and sich things. Not that hoss, anyway, you bet you.
Because he don't care a dam. You turn him loose once on this town,
and don't you know he'd eat up m-o-r-e goods-boxes, and fences, and
clothing-store things, and animals, and all them kind of valuables? Oh,
you bet he would. Because that's his style, you know, and he don't care
a dam. But you ought to see Mr. Fitz Smythe ride him around, prospecting
for them items--you ought to see him with his soldier coat on, and his
mustashers sticking out strong like a catfish's horns, and them long
laigs of his'n standing out so, like them two prongs they prop up a
step-ladder with, and a jolting down street at four mile a week--oh,
what a guy!--sets up stiff like a close pin, you know, and thinks
he looks like old General Macdowl. But the old man's a going to
hornisswoggle that hoss on account of his goblin up them pups. Oh, you
bet your life the old man's down on him. Yes, sir, coming!" and the
entertaining boy departed to see what the "old man" was calling him for.
But I am glad that I met the boy, and I am glad I saw the horse taking
his literary breakfast, because I know now why the animal looks so
discouraged when I see Fitz Smythe rambling down Montgomery street on
him--he has altogether too rough a time getting a living to be cheerful
and frivolous or anyways frisky.


Ain't they virtuous? Don't they take good care of the city? Is not their
constant vigilance and efficiency shown in the fact that roughs and
rowdies here are awed into good conduct?--isn't it shown in the fact
that ladies even on the back streets are safe from insult in
the daytime, when they are under the protection of a regiment of
soldiers?--isn't it shown in the fact that although many offenders
of importance go unpunished, they infallibly snaffle every Chinese
chicken-thief that attempts to drive his trade, and are duly glorified
by name in the papers for it?--isn't it shown in the fact that they are
always on the look-out and keep out of the way and never get run over
by wagons and things? And ain't they spry?--ain't they energetic?--ain't
they frisky?--Don't they parade up and down the sidewalk at the rate
of a block an hour and make everybody nervous and dizzy with their
frightful velocity? Don't they keep their clothes nice?--and ain't their
hands soft? And don't they work?--don't they work like horses?--don't
they, now? Don't they smile sweetly on the women?--and when they are
fatigued with their exertions, don't they back up against a
lamp-post and go on smiling till they break plum down? But ain't they
nice?--that's it, you know!--ain't they nice? They don't sweat--you
never see one of those fellows sweat. Why, if you were to see a
policeman sweating you would say, "oh, here, this poor man is going to
die--because this sort of thing is unnatural, you know." Oh, no--you
never see one of those fellows sweat. And ain't they easy and
comfortable and happy--always leaning up against a lamp-post in the sun,
and scratching one shin with the other foot and enjoying themselves?
Serene?--I reckon not.

I don't know anything the matter with the Department, but maybe Dr.
Rowell does. Now when Ziele broke that poor wretch's skull the other
night for stealing six bits' worth of flour sacks, and had him taken to
the Station House by a policeman, and jammed into one of the cells in
the most humorous way, do you think there way anything wrong there? I
don't. Why should they arrest Ziele and say, "Oh, come, now, you say you
found this stranger stealing on your premises, and we know you knocked
him on the head with your club--but then you better go in a cell,
too, till we see whether there's going to be any other account of
the thing--any account that mightn't jibe with yours altogether, you
know--you go in for confessed assault and battery, you know." Why should
they do that? Well, nobody ever said they did.

And why shouldn't they shove that half senseless wounded man into a cell
without getting a doctor to examine and see how badly he was hurt, and
consider that next day would be time enough, if he chanced to live that
long? And why shouldn't the jailor let him alone when he found him in
a dead stupor two hours after--let him alone because he couldn't wake
him--couldn't wake a man who was sleeping and with that calm serenity
which is peculiar to men whose heads have been caved in with a
club--couldn't wake such a subject, but never suspected that there was
anything unusual in the circumstance? Why shouldn't the jailor do so?
Why certainly--why shouldn't he?--the man was an infernal stranger. He
had no vote. Besides, had not a gentleman just said he stole some flour
sacks? Ah, and if he stole flour sacks, did he not deliberately put
himself outside the pale of humanity and Christian sympathy by that
hellish act? I think so. The department think so. Therefore, when
the stranger died at 7 in the morning, after four hours of refreshing
slumber in that cell, with his skull actually split in twain from front
to rear, like an apple, as was ascertained by post mortem examination,
what the very devil do you want to go and find fault with the prison
officers for? You are always putting in your shovel. Can't you find
somebody to pick on besides the police. It takes all my time to defend
them from people's attacks.

I know the police department is a kind, humane and generous institution.
Why, it was no longer ago than yesterday that I was reminded of
that time Captain Lees broke his leg. Didn't the free-handed, noble
Department shine forth with a dazzling radiance then? Didn't the Chief
detail officers Shields, Ward and two others to watch over him and nurse
him and look after all his wants with motherly solicitude--four of
them, you know--four of the very biggest and ablest-bodied men on
the force--when less generous people would have thought two nurses
sufficient--had these four acrobats in active hospital service that way
in the most liberal manner, at a cost to the city of San Francisco of
only the trifling sum of five hundred dollars a month--the same being
the salaries of four officers of the regular police force at $125 a
month each. But don't you know there are people mean enough to say that
Captain Lees ought to have paid his own nurse bills, and that if he had
had to do it maybe he would have managed to worry along on less than
five hundred dollars worth of nursing a month? And don't you know that
they say also that interest parties are always badgering the Supervisors
with petitions for an increase of the police force, and showing such
increase to be a terrible necessity, and yet they have always got to be
hunting up and creating new civil offices and berths, and making details
for nurse service in order to find something for them to do after they
get them appointed? And don't you know that they say that they wish to
god the city would hire a detachment of nurses and keep them where they
will be handy in case of accident, so that property will not be left
unprotected while policemen are absent on duty in sick rooms. You can't
think how it aggravates me to hear such harsh remarks about our virtuous
police force. Ah, well, the police will have their reward hereafter--no

Territorial Enterprise, January 1866


Disembodied spirits have been on the rampage now for more than a month
past in the house of one Albert Krum, in Kearny street--so much so that
the family find it impossible to keep a servant forty-eight hours. The
moment a new and unsuspecting servant-maid gets fairly to bed and her
light blown out, one of those dead and damned scalliwags takes her by
the hair and just "hazes" her; grabs her by the waterfall and snakes
her out of bed and bounces her on the floor two or three time; other
disorderly corpses shy old boots at her head, and bootjacks, and
brittle chamber furniture--washbowls, pitchers, hair-oil, teeth brushes,
hoop-skirts--anything that comes handy those phantoms seize and hurl at
Bridget, and pay no more attention to her howling than if it were music.
The spirits tramp, tramp, tramp, about the house at dead of night, and
when a light is struck the footsteps cease and the promenader is
not visible, and just as soon as the light is out that dead man goes
waltzing around again. They are a bloody lot. The young lady of the
house was lying in bed one night with the gas turned down low, when a
figure approached her through the gloom, whose ghastly aspect and solemn
carriage chilled her to the heart. What do you suppose she did?--jumped
up and seized the intruder?--threw a slipper at him?--"laid" him with
a misquotation from Scripture? No--none of these. But with admirable
presence of mind she covered up her head and yelled. That is what she
did. Few young women would have thought of doing that. The ghost came
and stood by the bed and groaned--a deep, agonizing, heart-broken
groan--and laid a bloody kitten on the pillow by the girl's head. And
then it groaned again, and sighed, "Oh, God, and must it be?" and
bet another bloody kitten. It groaned a third time in sorrow and
tribulation, and went one kitten better. And thus the sorrowing spirit
stood there, moaning in its anguish and unloading its mewing cargo,
until it had stacked up a whole litter of nine little bloody kittens on
the girl's pillow, and then, still moaning, moved away and vanished.

When lights were brought, there were the kittens, with the finger marks
of bloody hands upon their white fur--and the old mother cat, that had
come after them, swelled her tail in mortal fear and refused to take
hold of them. What do you think of that? what would you think of a ghost
that came to your bedside at dead of night and had kittens?

[reprinted in the Golden Era, JAN. 28, 1866]

Territorial Enterprise, January 1866


The term--"Busted"--applies to most people here. When a noted speculator
breaks, you all hear of it; but when Smith and Jones and Brown go
under, they make no stir; they are talked about among a small circle of
gratified acquaintances, but they industriously keep up appearances,
and the world at large go on thinking them as rich as ever. The lists of
rich stock operators of two years ago have quietly sunk beneath the wave
and financially gone to the devil. Smithers, who owned a hundred and
ninety-six feet in one of the big mines, and gave such costly parties,
has sent his family to Europe. Blivens, who owned so much in another
big mine, and kept such fast horses, has sent his family to Germany,
for their health, where they can sport a princely magnificence on fifty
dollars a month. Bloggs, who was high-you-a-muck of another great mine,
has sent his family home to rusticate a while with his father-in-law.
All the nabobs of '63 are pretty much ruined, but they send their
families foraging in foreign climes, and hide their poverty under a show
of "appearances." If a man's family start anywhere on the steamer now,
the public say: "There's the death rattle again--another Croesus has
gone in." These are sad, sad, times. We are all "busted," and our
families are exiled in foreign lands.

Territorial Enterprise, January 1866


The old gentleman and the old lady must be seventy-five years old, now.
They used to play with Dan Marble in New Orleans, twenty five years ago;
earlier, they had a theatre built in a "broad horn," and floated down
the Ohio and Mississippi clear to the Belize, tying up every night
and knocking Richard III endways for the delectation of any number of
graybacks that chose to come, from a dozen to a thousand, and selling
tickets for money when they could, and taking Salt Lake currency when
they couldn't. They have played in Canada and all over California and
Washoe--played everywhere in North America, I may say, and lo! I come to
tell you that they still "keep up their lick." I have been honored
with a letter from the old lady, dated "Helena, Last Chance, Montana
Territory, December 16." She says that they are just five miles from the
Missouri river. I suppose they will build a raft in the spring and float
down the river, astonishing the Indians with Othello, Richard, Jack
Sheppard, etc., and the next thing we hear of them they will be in New
Orleans again. The old lady further says:

"We have a theatre and company of Denverites, and are doing well. It
is so cold that the quicksilver all froze, or I would tell you how many
degrees below zero. Provisions high; salt, $1 per lb; butter, $2.50;
flour, $30, and it would not do for you to be here, for tobacco is $6
a pound and scarce...So cold that 50 head of cattle and 2 men who were
herding them froze to death on the night of the 14th. Great deal of
suffering among miners who were out prospecting. This is a lively town;
adjoining camps deserted; everybody wintering here...I play the part of
Richard III tonight. Next week I appear as Mazeppa. We charge $1.50 for
all seats."

The idea of the jolly, motherly old lady stripping to her shirt and
riding a fiery untamed Montana jackass up flights of stairs and kicking
and cavorting around the stage on him with the quicksilver frozen in the
thermometers and the audience taking brandy punches out of their pockets
and biting them, same as people eat peanuts in civilized lands! Why,
there is no end to the old woman's energy. She'll go through with
Mazeppa with flying colors even if she has to do it with icicles a yard
long hanging to her jackass's tail.

Territorial Enterprise, January 1866


This is the Sabbath to-day. This is the day set apart by a benignant
Creator for rest--for repose from the wearying toils of the week, and
for calm and serious (Brown's dog has commenced to howl again--I wonder
why Brown persists in keeping that dog chained up?) meditation upon
those tremendous subjects pertaining to our future existence. How
thankful we ought to be (There goes that rooster, now.) for this sweet
respite; how fervently we ought to lift up our voice and (Confound that
old hen--lays an egg every forty minutes, and then cackles until she
lays the next one.) testify our gratitude. How sadly, how soothingly
the music of that deep toned bell floats up from the distant church!
How gratefully we murmur (Scat!--that old gray tom-cat is always
bully-ragging that other one--got him down now, and digging the hair out
of him by the handful.) thanksgiving for these Sabbath blessings. How
lovely the day is! ("Buy a broom! buy a broom!") How wild and beautiful
the ("Golden Era 'n' Sund' Mercry, two for a bit apiece!") sun
smites upon the tranquil ("Alta, Mon' Call, an' Merican Flag!") city!
("Po-ta-to-o-o-es, ten pounds for two bits--po-ta-to o-o-es, ten pounds
for quart-va dollar!" )

However, never mind these Sunday reflections--there are too many
distracting influences abroad. This people have forgotten that San
Francisco is not a ranch--or rather, that it ought not properly to be
a ranch. It has got all the disagreeable features of a ranch, though.
Every citizen keeps from ten to five hundred chickens, and these crow
and cackle all day and all night; they stand watches, and the watch
on duty makes a racket while the off-watch sleeps. Let a stranger get
outside of Montgomery and Kearny from Pacific to Second, and close his
eyes, and he can imagine himself on a well-stocked farm, without an
effort, for his ears will be assailed by such a vile din of gobbling of
turkeys, and crowing of hoarse-voiced roosters, and cackling of hens,
and howling of cows, and whinnying of horses, and braying of jackasses,
and yowling of cats, that he will be driven to frenzy, and may look to
perform prodigies of blasphemy such as he never knew himself capable of

Sunday reflections! A man might as well try to reflect in Bedlam as in
San Francisco when her millions of livestock are in tune. Being calm,
now, I will call down no curse upon these dumb brutes (as they are
called by courtesy), but I will go so far as to say I wish they may all
die without issue, and that a sudden and violent death may overtake any
person who afterwards attempts to reinstate the fowl and brute nuisance.

Territorial Enterprise, January 1866

[dated January 24, 1866]



I find the following mysterious notice glaringly displayed in the
advertising columns of the Bulletin: OUTCROPPINGS!--The second volume,
compiled by W_____, will be issued next week.

Who is the publisher? There is no name mentioned, and I cannot
conjecture. But that is of small consequence--what interests us more is
to know who "W_____" is. Is it Wentworth (May Wentworth? ) or is it Wash
Wright? or is it Washington Second? or is it Winnemucca? or is it the
old original Whangdoodle? I shall have to inquire into this matter,
unless "W" comes forward with the information himself very soon. If the
volume were not promised "next week," we might suppose it was the first
of Bancroft's forthcoming nine volumes of California verse--but you know
we are not to look for any portion of that work before July. This second
volume of Outcroppings is a humbug of some kind or other, no doubt.

Territorial Enterprise, January 30-31, 1866

[portion of San Francisco Letter]

January 28, 1866


The fine restaurant between Clay and Commercial, on Montgomery street,
has been sold at auction. It was fitted up three months ago at a cost of
thirty-six hundred dollars, and brought only fourteen hundred yesterday
under the hammer. At first it did a prosperous business--made money
fast. Everybody was glad of it, for the proprietor was an estimable
man, and was struggling to gather together by honest industry a small
independence, so that he might go back to the Fatherland of his daily
dreams, and clasp once more to his breast the wife who has waited and
watched for him through weary years, kiss once more his little ones, and
hear their innocent prattle, and their childish glee, and the music of
their restless little feet. But about that time Fitz Smythe went there
to board, and that let him out, you know. But such is human life. Here
to-day and gone to-morrow. A dream--a shadow--a ripple on the water--a
thing for invisible gods to sport with for a season and then toss idly
by--idly by. It is rough.


[Text partially reconstructed from The Celebrated Jumping Frog of
Calaveras County and Other Sketches]

Wishing to post myself on one of the most current topics of the day,
I hunted up an old friend, Dennis McCarthy, who is editor of the new
Fenian journal in San Francisco, The Irish People. I found him sitting
on a sumptuous candle-box, in his shirt-sleeves, solacing himself with
a whiff of the national dhudeen or caubeen or whatever they call it--a
clay pipe with no stem to speak of. I thought it might flatter him to
address him in his native tongue, and so I bowed with considerable grace
and said:


And he said, "Be jabers!"

"Och hone!" said I.

"Mavoureen dheelish, acushla machree," replied The McCarthy.

"Erin go bragh," I continued with vivacity.

"Asthore!" responded The McCarthy.

"Tare an' ouns!" said I.

"Bhe dha husth; fag a rogarah lums!" said the bold Fenian.

"Ye have me there, be me sowl!" said I, (for I am not "up" in the
niceties of the language, you understand; I only know enough of it to
enable me to "keep umy end up" in an ordinary conversation.)


What a comfort these reporters do take in that graveyard word! They
stick it at the head of an item, in all its native impenetrability, and
then slash away cheerfully and finish the paragraph. It is too many for
me--that word is, for all it is so handy. Sometimes they write up a fine
item about the capture of a chicken-thief--and head it "Neodamode"; or
an exciting story of an infant with good clothes on and a strawberry
on its little left arm, and a coat of arms stitched on its poor little
shirt-tail being left in a market basket on someone's doorstep--and head
it "Neodamode"; or an entertaining account of a crazy man going through
his family and making it exceedingly warm for the same--and head it
"Neodamode"; or an item about a large funeral; or a banquet; or a ball;
or a wedding; or a prayer-meeting--anything, no matter what--all the
same. They head it "Neodamode." It is the handiest heading I ever saw;
it appears to fit any subject you please to tack it to. Why here lately
they have even got to using it in items concerning the taking out
of naturalization papers by foreigners. There is altogether too much
Neodamy around to suit me. I would not mind it so much if it were not
quite such an ugly word, and if I had a sort of general notion of
what in the mischief it means. I would like to hear from one of the

I have got to go now and report a sermon. I trust it will be pleasanter
work than writing a letter on Sunday, while the dogs and cats and
chickens are glorifying their Maker and raising the mischief.

Territorial Enterprise, February 4, 1866


There was an audience of about 400 ladies and gentlemen present,
and plenty of newspaper people--neuters. I saw a good-looking,
earnest-faced, pale- red-haired, neatly dressed, young woman standing
on a little stage behind a small deal table with slender legs and no
drawers--the table, understand me; I am writing in a hurry, but I do not
desire to confound my description of the table with my description of
the lady. The lady was Mrs. Foye.

As I was coming up town with the Examiner reporter, in the early part of
the evening, he said he had seen a gambler named Gus Graham shot down in
a town in Illinois years ago, by a mob, and as probably he was the only
person in San Francisco who knew of the circumstance, he thought he
would "give the spirits Graham to chaw on awhile." (N. B. This young
creature is a Democrat, and speaks with the native strength and
inelegance of his tribe.) In the course of the show he wrote his old
pal's name on a slip of paper and folded it up tightly and put it in a
hat which was passed around, and which already had about five hundred
similar documents in it. The pile was dumped on the table and the medium
began to take them up one by one and lay them aside, asking "Is this
spirit present?--or this?--or this?" About one in fifty would rap, and
the person who sent up the name would rise in his place and question
the defunct. At last a spirit seized the medium's hand and wrote "Gus
Graham" backwards. Then the medium went skirmishing through the papers
for the corresponding name. And that old sport knew his card by the
back. When the medium came to it, after picking up fifty others, he
rapped! A committee-man unfolded the paper and it was the right one. I
sent for it and got it. It was all right. However, I suppose "all them
Democrats" are on sociable terms with the devil. The young man got up
and asked:

"Did you die in '51?--'52?--'53?--'54?--"

Ghost--"Rap, rap, rap."

"Did you die of

"Rap, rap, rap."

"Were you hanged?--drowned?--stabbed?--shot?"

"Rap, rap, rap."

"Did you die in Mississippi?--Kentucky?--New York?--Sandwich

"Rap, rap, rap."

"In Adams county?--Madison?--Randolph?--"

"Rap, rap, rap."

It was no use trying to catch the departed gambler. He knew his hand and
played it like a Major.

I was surprised. I had a very dear friend, who, I had heard, had gone to
the spirit land, or perdition, or some of those places, and I desired
to know something concerning him. There was something so awful, though,
about talking with living, sinful lips to the ghostly dead, that I could
hardly bring myself to rise and speak. But at last I got tremblingly up
and said with low and reverent voice:

"Is the spirit of John Smith present?"

"Whack! whack! whack!"

God bless me. I believe all the dead and damned John Smiths between
hell and San Francisco tackled that poor little table at once! I was
considerably set back--stunned, I may say. The audience urged me to go
on, however, and I said:

"What did you die of?"

The Smiths answered to every disease and casualty that man can die of.

"Where did you die!"

They answered yes to every locality I could name while my geography held

"Are you happy where you are?"

There was a vigorous and unanimous "No!" from the late Smiths.

"Is it warm there?"

An educated Smith seized the medium's hand and wrote:

"It's no name for it."

"Did you leave any Smiths in that place when you came away?"

"Dead loads of them!"

I fancied, I heard the shadowy Smiths chuckle at this feeble joke--the
rare joke that there could be live loads of Smiths where all are dead.

"How many Smiths are present?"

"Eighteen millions--the procession now reaches from here to the other
side of China."

"Then there are many Smiths in the kingdom of the lost?"

"The Prince Apollyon calls all newcomers Smith on general principles;
and continues to do so until he is corrected, if he chances to be

"What do lost spirits call their dread abode?"

"They call it the Smithsonian Institute."

I got hold of the right Smith at last--the particular Smith I was
after--my dear, lost, lamented friend--and learned that he died a
violent death. I feared as much. He said his wife talked him to death.
Poor wretch!

But without any nonsense, Mrs. Foye's seance was a very astonishing
affair to me--and a very entertaining one. The Examiner man's "old
pard," the gambler, was too many for me. He answered every question
exactly right; and his disembodied spirit, invisible to mortal eyes,
must have been prowling around that hall last night. That is, unless
this pretended spiritualism is only that other black art called
clairvoyance, after all. And yet, the clairvoyant can only tell what is
in your mind--but once or twice last night the spirits brought facts to
the minds of their questioners which the latter had forgotten before.
Well, I cannot make anything out of it. I asked the Examiner man what he
thought of it, and he said, in the Democratic dialect: "Well, I don 't
know--I don't know--but it's d___d funny." He did not mean that it
was laughable--he only meant that it was perplexing. But such is the
language of Democracy.

Territorial Enterprise, February 1866


Ward, the shirt man, has issued a pamphlet of poems--burlesques of some
of the poems in "Outcroppings," and purporting to be a second edition
of that work, I suppose, as it bears the same title. It is simply an
advertising affair, of course. It was written by "Trem." The burlesque
of James Linen's "I Feel I'm Growing Auld," is the most outlandish
combination of untranslatable Scotch phraseology I ever saw. I think it
is a pretty good take-off on the fashion some folks have of humbugging
Americans with poetry that defies criticism because its extravagant
Scotchiness defies comprehension. We have come to think, in our day and
generation, that every piece of Scotch verse which we cannot understand
is necessarily pure, sweet poetry, and that all prose which is spelled
atrociously is necessarily humorous and intensely funny. Perhaps you can
dig some meaning out of--


by Jean Lining

I feel I'm growing mirk, gude wife, I feel I'm growing mirk, Unsicker
girns the graith an' doup, An' aye, the stound is birk. I've fash 'd
mysel' wi' creeshie rax O'er jouk an' hallan braw, An' now I'll stowlins
pit my duds An' gar sark white as snaw. I feel I'm growing mirk, gude
wife, I feel I'm growing mirk, An' wae an' wae the giglet jinks, Tis
wheep-ed wi' my dirk. My claes are mirk wi' howdie whangs, But still my
heart is fair, Though sconnered yowics loup an' blink, I'm nae so puir
in gear. I feel I'm growing mirk, gude wife, I feel I'm growing mirk,
The howdie bicker skeeps my een--Na mair the coof I'll shirk. I'll get
a Ward's Neat Fitting Shirt--They'll glint wi' pawky een, There's sax
score Ward's Shirts sold, gude wife, Since I called in yestreen.

Territorial Enterprise, February 6-7, 1866

[portion of San Francisco letter written February 3, 1866]


Fitz Smythe ("Amigo," of the Gold Hill News) is the champion of the
police, and is always in a sweat because I find fault with them. Now
I don't find fault with them often, and when I do I sometimes do it
honestly; even Fitz Smythe will not have cheek to say he expresses his
honest opinions when he invariably and eternally slobbers them over with
his slimy praise and can never find them otherwise than pure and
sinless in every case. No man is always blameless--Fitz Smythe ought to
recollect that and bestow his praise with more judgment. Fitz knows he
would abuse them like pirates if they were all to die suddenly. I know
it, because he always abuses dead people. He was a firm, unswerving
friend of poor Barney Olwell until the man was hanged and buried, and
then look what hard names he called him in the last News. Fitz can ruin
the reputation of any man with a paragraph or two of his praise. I don't
say it in a spirit of anger, but I am telling it for a plain truth.
I have only stirred the police up and irritated them a little with my
cheerful abuse, but Fitz Smythe has utterly ruined their character with
his disastrous praise. I don't ask any man to take my evidence alone
in this matter--I refer doubters to the police themselves. But for Fitz
Smythe's kindly meant but calamitous compliments, the police of San
Francisco would stand as high to-day as any similar body of men in the
world. But you know yourself that you soon cease to attach weight to
the compliments of a man whose mouth is an eternally-flowing fountain of
flattery. Fitz Smythe praises all alike--makes no distinction. There is
that man Ansbro--I don't know him--never saw him, that I know of--but
I know, and so does Fitz Smythe, that he does twice as much work as any
other detective on the force--but does Fitz Smythe praise him any more
than he praises those pets who never do anything at all? Not he--he
makes no discrimination. And Chappell? but why argue the case? When
those officers do anything Fitz impartially rings in all the balance
of the force to share the credit, sometimes. Fitz, you won't do. I have
told you so fifty times, and I tell you again, that you won't do. I can
warm you up with ten sentences, and make you dance like a hen on a hot
griddle, any time, Fitz Smythe. I know your weak spot. I can touch you
on the raw whenever I please, make you lose your temper and write the
most spiteful, undignified things. You see you will always be a little
awkward with a pen, Fitz, because your head isn't sound--isn't well
balanced; you have good points, you know, but they are kept down
and crowded out by bad ones. You don't know that when a man is in a
controversy he is at a great disadvantage when he loses his temper. It
leaves him too open to ridicule, you know. And you can't stand ridicule,
Fitz; it cuts you to the quick; it just makes you howl; I know that as
well as you do, Fitz, and I am saying these things for your own good;
you are young, and you are apt to let the fire of youth drive you into
exceedingly unhappy performances. I do not mean that you are so young in
years, you know, but young in experience of the world. You ought to be
modest; the same wisdom which was so potent in Illinois and the wilds of
Texas does not overpower the people of a great city like it used to do
there, you know. Ah, no--they read you, attentively--because you write
with a certain attractiveness Fitz Smythe--but they say "Oh, this
prairie wisdom is too wide--too flat; and this swamp wisdom's too deep

And they don't attach any weight to your praise of the police. They say,
"Oh, this fellow don't know--he ain't used to police--they don't have
'em in the wilds of Texas where this Ranger come from."

But you are certainly the most interesting subject to write about,
Fitzy--I never get hold of you but I want to stay with you and hang on
to you just as if you were a jug. I didn't intend to write two
lines this time, Fitz; I only wanted to get you, as Excuser and
Explainer-in-Chief to the Police, to go on the witness stand and inform
me when it is possible for a man to lug a prisoner about a mile
through the thickest settled portion of this city--clear to
the station-house--and never come across a policeman. Read this
communication from the Morning Call, Fitz--and it is a true version--and
then go on and explain it, Fitz--try it, you long-legged rip!


EDITORS MORNING CALL:--On Thursday night a terrible onslaught was
made on the house of a peaceable citizen on Larkin street by a band
of soldiers. The man, awakened by this attempt to enter his dwelling,
called on his neighbors for help. One came to his aid, the soldiers
threatened to fire on the families, but, after a severe fight and long
chase, the citizen and his neighbor captured two of the rascals near the
Spring Valley School House. They have been held over to appear before
the County Court. The citizen, with his prisoner, came from the Presidio
Road, along Larkin, down Union, along Stockton, down Broadway to Kearny
street, before he met an officer. The neighbor, with his prisoner,
came from the same place, down Union to Powell, along that street to
Washington, and down to the lower side of the Plaza, before he met an
officer. This was between three and four, A. M. What I wish to know is,
where were the Police, and cannot we, in the remote parts, be protected
by at least one officer?


I spoke the other day of some singular proceedings of a firm of
undertakers here, and now I come to converse about one or two more
of the undertaker tribe. I begin to think this sort of people have no
bowels--as the ancients would say--no heart, as we would express it.
They appear to think only of business--business first, last, all the
time. They trade in the woes of men as coolly as other people trade in
candles and mackerel. Their hearts are ironclad, and they seem to have
no sympathies in common with their fellow men.

A prominent firm of undertakers here own largely in Lone Mountain
Cemetery and also in the toll-road leading to it. Now if you or I
owned that toll-road we would be satisfied with the revenue from a long
funeral procession and would "throw in" the corpse--we would let him
pass free of toll--we would wink placidly at the gate-keeper and say,
"Never mind this gentleman in the hearse--this fellow's a dead-head."
But the firm I am speaking of never do that--if a corpse starts to
Paradise or perdition by their road he has got to pay his toll or else
switch off and take some other route. And it is rare to see the pride
this firm takes in the popularity and respectability of their cemetery,
and the interest and even enthusiasm which they display in their

A friend of mine was out at Lone Mountain the other day, and was moving
sadly among the tombs thinking of departed comrades and recalling the
once pleasant faces now so cold, and the once familiar voices now so
still, and the once busy hands now idly crossed beneath the turf, when
he came upon Mr. Smith, of the firm.

"Ah, good morning," says Smith, "come out to see us at last, have
you?--glad you have! let me show you round--let me show you round.
Pretty fine ain't it?--everything in apple pie order, eh? Everybody
says so--everybody says mighty few graveyards go ahead of this. We are
endorsed by the best people in San Francisco. We get 'em, sir, we get
the pick and choice of the departed. Come, let me show you. Here's
Major-General Jones- distinguished man, he was--very distinguished
man--highsted him up on that mound, there, where he's prominent. And
here's MacSpadden--rich?--Oh, my! And we've got Brigadier-General
Jollopson here--there he is, over there--keep him trimmed up and spruce
as a fresh "plant," all the time. And we've got Swimley, and Stiggers,
the bankers, and Johnson and Swipe, the railroad men, and m-o-r-e
Admirals and them kind of people--slathers of 'em! And bless you
we've got as much as a whole block planted in nothing but hundred
thousand-dollar fellows--and--"

(Here Mr. Smith's face lighted up suddenly with a blaze of enthusiasm,
and he rubbed his hands together and ducked his head to get a
better view through the shrubbery of the distant toll-road, and then

"Ah! is it another? Yes, I believe it is--yes it is! Third arrival
to-day! Long procession! 'George this is gay! Well, so-long, Thompson, I
must go and cache this party!"

And the happy undertaker skipped lightly away to offer the dismal
hospitalities of his establishment to the unconscious visitor in the

Territorial Enterprise, February 8-10, 1866

[portion of San Francisco Letter, written on February 6, 1866]


I dreamed last night that I was sitting in my room smoking my pipe and
looking into the dying embers on the hearth, conjuring up old faces in
their changing shapes, and listening to old voices in the moaning
winds outside, when there was a knock at the door and a man
entered--bowed--walked deliberately forward and sat down opposite me. He
was dressed in a queer old garb of I don't know how many centuries ago.
He said, with a perceptible show of vanity:

"My name's Ananias--may have heard of me, perhaps?"

I said, reflectively, "No--no--I think not, Mr. Anan

"Never heard of me! Bismillah! Och hone! gewhil--. But you couldn't have
read the Scriptures!"

I rose to my feet in great surprise: "Ah--is it possible?--I remember
now--I remember your history. Yes, yes, yes, I remember you made a
little statement that wouldn't wash, so to speak, and they took your
life for it. They--they bounced a thunderbolt on your head, or something
of that sort, didn't they?"

"Yes, but drop these matters and let's to business. The thief
sympathizes with the thief, the murderer with the murderer, the vagabond
with the vagabond: I, too, feel for my kind--I want to do something for
this Fitz Smythe--'

"Give me your hand!--this sentiment does you honor, sir, it does
you honor! And this solicitude of the Prince of Liars for the humble
disciple Fitz Smythe is well merited, it is indeed--for although, Sire,
his efforts may not be brilliant, they make up for that defect in bulk
and quantity; such steady persistence as his, such unwearying devotion
to his art, are deserving of the highest encomium."

"You know the man--I see that--and he is worthy of your admiration. As
you say, his lies are not brilliant, but they never slack up--they are
always on time. Some of them are awkward--very stupid and awkward--but
that is to be expected, of course, where a man is at it so constantly
and exhaustively as Fitz Smythe--or as we call him in hell, 'Brother
Smythe'--we all take the Alta. But they are strong!--they are awkward
and stupid, but they are powerful free from truth! You take his mildest
lie--take those he tells about Mark Twain, for instance (who is the only
newspaper man I have ever come across who wouldn't lie and couldn't lie,
shame to him,)--take those lies--take even the very mildest of them, and
don't you know they'd let a man out mighty quick in my time? Why there'd
have been more thunder and lightning after him in two seconds! If Fitz
Smythe had lived in my time and told that little lie he told about you
last--just that little one, even--he'd have been knocked from Jericho
to Jacksonville quick as winking! Lord bless you but they were mighty
particular in those days! Notice how they hazed me!"

"So they did, sir, so they did--they snatched you very lively indeed,

"But we'll come to business, now. No man's productions are more admired
in the regions of the damned than Fitz Smythe's. We have watched his
career with pride and satisfaction, and at a meeting held in Perdition
last night a committee of the most distinguished liars the world has
ever produced was appointed to visit the earth and confer upon our
gifted disciple certain marks of distinction to which we consider him
entitled--orders of merit, they are--honors which he has laboriously
earned. We wish to confer these compliments upon him through you, his
bosom friend. Now, therefore, I, Ananias Chief of Liars by Seniority,
do hereby create our worthy disciple Armand Leonidas Fitz Smythe Amigo
Stiggers, a Knight of the Grand Order of the Liars of St. Ananias, and
confer upon him the freedom of hell. And the symbol of this order being
a horse, I do hereby present him this noble animal, which manifests its
preference for falsehood over truth by devouring daily newspapers in
preference to any other food."

I looked at the horse, as he stood there chewing up my last Bulletin,
and recognized him as the beast Fitz Smythe rides every day. Ananias
now bade me good evening, and said his wife, another member of the
Committee, would now call upon me.

The door opened, and the ancient Sapphira, who was stricken with death
for telling a lie, ages ago, stood before me. She said:

"I have heard my husband; he has spoken well; it is sufficient. I do
hereby create Armand Leonidas Fitz Smythe Amigo Stiggers a Knight of
the Order of the Liars of St. Sapphira, and clothe him with the regalia
pertaining to the same--this pair of gray pantaloons--a sign and symbol
of the matrimonial supremacy which I have enjoyed in my household from
time immemorial."

And she left the gray pantaloons and departed, saying the next member
of the Committee who would appear would be the most noble the Baron de
Munchausen. The door opened and the world famed liar entered:

"I come to do honor to my son, the inspired Armand Leonidas Fitz Smythe
Amigo Stiggers. It ill beseemeth a father to boast at length of his own
offspring, wherefore I shall say no more in that respect, but proceed to
create him a Knight of the Noble Order of the Liars of St. Munchausen,
and invest him with the regalia pertaining to the same--this gray frock
coat--which hath been a symbol of depravity in all ages of the world."
And the great Baron shed a few tears of paternal pride and murmured,
"Kiss him for his father," and went away. As he disappeared he remarked
that the next and last member of the committee would now wait upon me,
in the person of Thomas Pepper. And in a moment the renowned Tom Pepper,
who was such a preposterous liar that he couldn't get to heaven and they
wouldn't have him in hell, was present! He said:

"I have watched the great Armand Leonidas Fitz Smythe Amigo Stiggers
with extraordinary interest. So we all have--but how heedless we are!
Those who were with you within this hour praised him without stint
and mentioned his excellencies--yet not one of them has discovered his
crowning grace--his highest gift. It is this--he always tells the truth
with such windy, wordy, blundering awkwardness that nobody ever believes
it, and so his truths usually pass for his most splendid falsehoods!
[I could not help acknowledging to myself that this was so.] A man with
such a talent as that is bound to achieve high distinction and do great
service in our ranks; and for this talent of his more than for his
wonderful abilities in distorting facts, I do hereby confer upon him the
Sublime Order of the Knights of the Liars of St. Pepper, and present
him with the symbol pertaining to the same--this grim, twisted,
sharply-projecting, sunburned mustache, whose fashion and pattern are
only permitted to be used by those noble knights whose nature it is to
war against truth wherever they find it, and to go a long, long way
out of their road to prospect for chances to lie. I am the only man
the world ever produced who was so wonderful a romancer that he could
neither get a show in heaven nor hell, and Fitz Smythe will be the
second one. It will be jolly. It is lonesome now, but when Smythe comes
we two will loaf around on the outside of damnation and swap lies and
be p-e-r-fectly happy. Good day, old Petrified Facts, good day." And Tom
Pepper, the most splendid liar the world ever gave birth to, was gone!

That was my dream. And don't you know that for as much as six hours
afterwards I fully believed it was nothing but a dream? But just before
three o'clock to-day I thought my hair would turn white with amazement
when I saw Amigo Fitz Smythe issue from that alley near the Alta office
riding the very horse Ananias gave him, and that horse eating a file of
the Gold Hill News; and wearing the same gray pantaloons Mrs. Sapphira
Ananias gave him; and the gray coat that Baron Munchausen gave him,
and with his pensive nose overhanging those two skewers--that absurd
sunburned mustache, I mean--which Tom Pepper gave him. So it was
reality. It was no dream after all! This lets me out with Fitz Smythe,
you know. I cannot associate with that kind of stock. I don't want the
worst characters in hell to be running after me with friendly messages
and little testimonials of admiration for Smythe, and blowing about his
talents, and bragging on him, and belching their villainous fire and
brimstone all through the atmosphere and making my place smell worse
than a menagerie. I have too much regard for my good name and my
personal comfort, and so this lets me out with Fitz Smythe.


The Rev. Richard F. Putnam, late Rector of the Episcopal Church at Grass
Valley, has assumed the pastorate of the Church of the Advent in this

This gentleman, who was long connected with the editorial department of
the Territorial Enterprise, and was latterly employed on the Sacramento
Union, was one of the best men I ever knew. He was a man who could not
whistle hard tunes--could not whistle easy ones so as to make a person
wish him to keep it up long at a time. Some of the printers used to come
to listen when he begun, but the more cultured usually went out--but he
could swear and make up telegraph news with any man. He was a man who
could go down into a beer cellar in the shank of the evening, and curse
and swear, and play commercial seven-up with good average luck and
without chicanery till dewy morn, and drink beer all the while--all the
while. He was a man who was handy with his pen, and would write you a
crusher on any subject under the sun, no matter whether he knew anything
about it or not--and he would be growling at somebody or other all
through; and if everybody went away and left him he would sit there and
curse and swear at his lamp till it burned blue; and he cursed that boy
that cleaned that lamp till the constitution of the same was permanently
impaired. He was a man who would wade through snow up to his neck to
serve his friend, and would convey him home when drunk, and peel him and
put him to bed if it was a mile and a half. He was a man who was neck
and crop and neck and heels for his friends, and blood, hair and
the ground tore up to his enemies. Take him how you would, he was an
ornament to his species--and there is no man that is more sorry than
I am to see him forsake the pleasant fields he was wont to tread and
confine himself to a limited beat on the Gospel--to a beat in a town
which is small and where he cannot have full swing according to his
dimensions, if I may so speak in connection with matters pertaining to
the Scriptural line of business.

P.S.--But I find that this Putnam mentioned in the item above, is not
the Putnam I have been speaking of. I was talking of C. A. V. Putnam,
and I perceive that the above parson is Richard F. Well, I am glad--and
it is all the better as it is.

Territorial Enterprise, February 1866


I attended the seance last night. After the house was crowded with
ladies and gentlemen, Mrs. Foye stepped out upon the stage and said it
was usual to elect a committee of two gentlemen to sit up there and see
that everything was conducted with perfect honesty and fairness. She
said she wished the audience to name gentlemen whose integrity, whose
conscientiousness--in a word whose high moral character, in every
respect, was notorious in the community. The majority of the audience
arose with one impulse and called my name. This handsome compliment was
as grateful as it was graceful, and I felt the tears spring to my eyes.
I trust I shall never do anything to forfeit the generous confidence
San Francisco has thus shown in me. This touching compliment is none the
less grateful to me when I reflect that it took me two days to get it
up. I "put up" that hand myself. I got all my friends to promise to go
there and vote for me to be on that committee--and having reported a
good deal in Legislatures, I knew how to do it right. I had a two-thirds
vote secured--I wanted enough to elect me over the medium's veto, you
know. I was elected, and I was glad of it. I thought I would feel a
good deal better satisfied if I could have a chance to examine into this
mystery myself, without being obliged to take somebody else's word for
its fairness, and I did not go on that stand to find fault or make fun
of the affair--a thing which would not speak well for my modesty when I
reflect that so many men so much older and wiser than I am see nothing
in Spiritualism to scoff at, but firmly believe in it as a religion.

Mr. Whiting was chosen as the other committee man, and we sat down at a
little table on the stage with the medium, and proceeded to business. We
wrote the names of various departed persons. Mr. W. wrote a good many,
but I found that I did not know many dead people; however, I put in the
names of two or three whom I had known well, and then filled out the
list with names of citizens of San Francisco who had been distinguished
in life, so that most persons in the audience could tell whether facts
stated by such spirits concerning themselves were correct or not. I will
remark here that not a solitary spirit summoned by me paid the least
attention to the invitation. I never got a word out of any of them. One
of Mr. Whiting's spirits came up and stated some things about itself
which were correct. Then some five hundred closely folded slips of paper
containing names, were dumped in a pile on the table, and the lady began
to lay them aside one by one. Finally a rap was heard. I took the folded
paper; the spirit, so-called, seized the lady's hand and wrote "J. M.
Cooke" backwards and upside down on a sheet of paper. I opened the
slip I held, and, as Captain Cuttle would say, "J. M. Cooke" was the
"dientical" name in it. A gentleman in the audience said he sent up the
name. He asked a question or so, and then the spirit wrote "Would like
to communicate with you alone." The privacy of this ghost was respected,
and he was permitted to go to thunder again unmolested. "William Nelson"
reported himself from the other world, and in answer to questions asked
by a former friend of his in the audience, said he was aged 24 when he
died; died by violence; died in a battle; was a soldier; had fought both
in the infantry and cavalry; fell at Chickamauga; had been a Catholic on
earth--was not one now. Then in answer to a pelting volley of questions,
the shadowy warrior wrote: "I don't want to answer any more about it."
Exit Nelson.

About this time it was suggested that a couple of Germans be added to
the committee, and it was done. Mr. Wallenstein, an elderly man, came
forward, and also Mr. Ollendorf, a spry young fellow, cocked and primed
for a sensation. They wrote some names. Then young Ollendorf said
something which sounded like:

"Ist ein geist hierans?" (bursts of laughter from the audience.)

Three raps--signifying that there was a geist hierans.

"Vollensie schriehen?" (more laughter). Three raps.

"Einzig stollen, linsowftterowlickter-hairowfterfrowleineruback
folderol?" (Oh, this is too rough, you know. I can't keep the run of
this sort of thing.) Incredible as it may seem, the spirit cheerfully
answered yes to that astonishing proposition.

Young Ollendorf sprang to his feet in a state of consuming excitement.
He exclaimed:

"Laties and shentlemen! I write de name for a man vot lifs! Speerit
rabbing dells me he ties in yahr eighteen hoondert und dwelf, but he
yoos as live und helty as--"

The Medium--"Sit down, sir!"

Mr. O.--"But de speerit cheat!--dere is no such speerit--" (All this
time applause and laughter by turns from the audience.)

Medium--"Take your seat, sir, and I will explain this matter."

And she explained. And in that explanation she let off a blast which was
so terrific that I half expected to see young Ollendorf shoot up through
the roof. She said he had come up there with fraud and deceit and
cheating in his heart, and a kindred spirit had come from the land
of shadows to commune with him! She was terribly bitter. She said in
substance, though not in words, that perdition was full of just such
fellows as Ollendorf, and they were ready on the slightest pretext to
rush in and assume any body's name, and rap, and write, and lie, and
swindle with a perfect looseness whenever they could rope in a living
affinity like poor Ollendorf to communicate with! (Great applause and

Ollendorf stood his ground with good pluck, and was going to open his
batteries again, when a storm of cries arose all over the house. "Get
down! Go on! Speak on--we'll hear you! Climb down from that platform!
Stay where you are--Vamose! Stick to your post--say your say!"

The medium rose up and said if Ollendorf remained, she would not. She
recognized no one's right to come there and insult her by practicing
a deception upon her and attempting to bring ridicule upon so solemn a
thing as her religious belief.

The audience then became quiet, and the subjugated Ollendorf retired
from the platform.

The other German raised a spirit, questioned it at some length in his
own language, and said the answers were correct. The medium claims to be
entirely unacquainted with the German language.

A spirit seized the medium's hand and wrote "G. L. Smith" very
distinctly. She hunted through the mass of papers, and finally the
spirit rapped. She handed me the folded paper she had just picked up. It
had "T. J. Smith" in it. (You never can depend on these Smiths; you call
for one and the whole tribe will come clattering out of hell to answer
you.) Upon further inquiry it was discovered that both these Smiths were
present. We chose "T. J." A gentleman in the audience said that was his
Smith. So he questioned him, and Smith said he died by violence; he
had been a teacher; not a school-teacher, but (after some hesitation)
a teacher of religion, and was a sort of a cross between a Universalist
and a Unitarian; has got straightened out and changed his opinion since
he left here; said he was perfectly happy. Mr. George Purnell, having
been added to the committee, proceeded in connection with myself, Mrs.
Foye and a number of persons in the audience, to question this talkative
and frolicksome old parson. Among spirits, I judge he is the gayest of
the gay. He said he had no tangible body; a bullet could pass through
him and never make a hole; rain could pass through him as through vapor,
and not discommode him in the least (wherefore I suppose he don't know
enough to come in when it rains--or don't care enough); says heaven and
hell are simply mental conditions--spirits in the former have happy
and contented minds; and those in the latter are torn by remorse of
conscience; says as far as he is concerned, he is all right--he is
happy; would not say whether he was a very good or a very bad man on
earth (the shrewd old water-proof nonentity!--I asked the question so
that I might average my own chances for his luck in the other world,
but he saw my drift); says he has an occupation there--puts in his
time teaching and being taught; says there are spheres--grades of
perfection--he is making pretty good progress--has been promoted a
sphere or so since his matriculation; (I said mentally: "Go slow, old
man, go slow--you have got all eternity before you"--and he replied
not); he don't know how many spheres there are (but I suppose there must
be millions, because if a man goes galloping through them at the rate
this old Universalist is doing, he will get through an infinitude of
them by the time he has been there as long as old Sesostris and those
ancient mummies; and there is no estimating how high he will get in
even the infancy of eternity--I am afraid the old man is scouring along
rather too fast for the style of his surroundings, and the length of
time he has got on his hands); says spirits cannot feel heat or
cold (which militates somewhat against all my notions of orthodox
damnation--fire and brimstone); says spirits commune with each other
by thought--they have no language; says the distinctions of the sex are
preserved there--and so forth and so on.

The old parson wrote and talked for an hour, and showed by his quick,
shrewd, intelligent replies, that he had not been sitting up nights in
the other world for nothing, he had been prying into everything worth
knowing, and finding out everything he possibly could--as he said
himself, when he did not understand a thing he hunted up a spirit who
could explain it; consequently he is pretty thoroughly posted; and for
his accommodating conduct and its uniform courtesy to me, I sincerely
hope he will continue to progress at his present velocity until he
lands on the very roof of the highest sphere of all, and thus achieves

I have made a report of those proceedings which every person present
will say is correct in every particular. But I do not know any more
about the queer mystery than I did before. I could not even tell where
the knocks were made, though they were not two feet from me. Sometimes
they seemed to be on the corner of the table, sometimes under the center
of it, and sometimes they seemed to proceed from the medium's knee
joints. I could not locate them at all, though; they only had a general
seeming of being in any one spot; sometimes they even seemed to be in
the air. As to where that remarkable intelligence emanates from which
directs those strangely accurate replies, that is beyond my reason. I
cannot any more account for that than I could explain those wonderful
miracles performed by Hindoo jugglers. I cannot tell whether the power
is supernatural in either case or not, and I never expect to know as
long as I live. It is necessarily impossible to know--and it is mighty
hard to fully believe what you don't know.

But I am going to see it through, now, if I do not go crazy--an
eccentricity that seems singularly apt to follow investigations of

Territorial Enterprise, February 1866


I once made up my mind to keep the ladies of the State of Nevada posted
upon the fashions, but I found it hard to do. The fashions got so
shaky that it was hard to tell what was good orthodox fashion, and
what heretical and vulgar. This shakiness still obtains in everything
pertaining to a lady's dress except her bonnet and her shoes. Some wear
waterfalls, some wear nets, some wear cataracts of curls, and a few
go bald, among the old maids; so no man can swear to any particular
"fashion" in the matter of hair.

The same uncertainty seems to prevail regarding hoops. Little
"highflyer" schoolgirls of bad associations, and a good many women of
full growth, wear no hoops at all. And we suspect these, as quickly and
as naturally as we suspect a woman who keeps a poodle. Some who I know
to be ladies, wear the ordinary moderate sized hoops, and some who
I also know to be ladies, wear the new hoop of the "spread-eagle"
pattern--and some wear the latter who are not elegant and virtuous
ladies--but that is a thing that may be said of any fashion whatever,
of course. The new hoops with a spreading base look only tolerably well.
They are not bell-shaped--the "spread" is much more abrupt than that.
It is tent-shaped; I do not mean an army tent, but a circus tent--which
comes down steep and small half way and then shoots suddenly out
horizontally and spreads abroad. To critically examine these hoops--to
get the best effect--one should stand on the corner of Montgomery and
look up a steep street like Clay or Washington. As the ladies loop their
dresses up till they lie in folds and festoons on the spreading hoop,
the effect presented by a furtive glance up a steep street is very
charming. It reminds me of how I used to peep under circus tents when
I was a boy and see a lot of mysterious legs tripping about with
no visible bodies attached to them. And what handsome vari-colored,
gold-clasped garters they wear now-a-days! But for the new spreading
hoops, I might have gone on thinking ladies still tied up their
stockings with common strings and ribbons as they used to do when I was
a boy and they presumed upon my youth to indulge in little freedoms in
the way of arranging their apparel which they do not dare to venture
upon in my presence now.

But as I intimated before, one new fashion seems to be marked and
universally accepted. It is in the matter of shoes. The ladies all
wear thick-soled shoes which lace up in front and reach half way to the
knees. The shoe itself is very neat and handsome up to the top of the
instep--but I bear a bitter animosity to all the surplus leather between
that point and the calf of the leg. The tight lacing of this legging
above the ankle-bone draws the leather close to the ankle and gives the
heel an undue prominence or projection--makes it stick out behind and
assume the shape called the "jay bird heel" pattern. It does not look
well. Then imagine this tall shoe on a woman with a large, round, fat
foot, and a huge, stuffy, swollen-looking ankle. She looks like she
had on an elbow of stove pipe. Any foot and ankle that are not the
perfection of proportion and graceful contour look surpassingly ugly in
these high-water shoes. The pretty and sensible fashion of looping up
the dress gives one ample opportunity to critically examine and curse an
ugly foot. I wish they would cut down these shoes a little in the matter
of leggings.

Territorial Enterprise, February 1866


Chief Burke's Star Chamber Board of Police Commissioners is the
funniest institution extant, and the way he conducts it is the funniest
theatrical exhibition in San Francisco. Now to see the Chief fly
around and snatch up accuser and accused before the commission when any
policeman is charged with misconduct in the public prints, you would
imagine that fearful Commission was really going to raise the very
devil. But it is all humbug, display, fuss and feathers. The Chief
brings his policeman out as sinless as an angel, unless the testimony be
heavy enough and strong enough, almost, to hang an ordinary culprit, in
which case a penalty of four or five days' suspension is awarded.

Wouldn't you call that Legislature steeped in stupidity which appointed
a father to try his own son for crimes against the State? Of course.
And knowing that the father must share the disgrace if the son is found
guilty, would you ever expect a conviction? Certainly not. And would
you expect the father's blind partiality for his own offspring to weigh
heavily against evidence given against that son. Assuredly you would.
Well, this Police Commission is a milder form of that same principle.
Chief Burke makes all these policemen, by appointment--breeds them--and
feels something of a parent's solicitude for them; and yet, if any
charge is brought against them, he is the judge before whom they are
tried! Isn't it perfectly absurd? I think so. It takes all three
of those commissioners to convict--the verdict must be
unanimous--therefore, since every conviction of one of the Chief's
offspring must in the nature of things be a sort of reflection upon
himself, you cannot be surprised to know that police officers are very
seldom convicted before the Police commissioners. Though the man's sins
were blacker than night, the chief can always prevent conviction by
simply with holding his consent. And this extraordinary power works both
ways, too. See how simple and easy a matter it was for the chief to say
to a political obstruction in his path: "You are dismissed, McMillan; I
know of nothing to your discredit as an officer, but you are an aspirant
to my position and I won't keep a stick to break my own back with." He
simply said "Go," and he had to shove! If he had been one of the Chief's
pets, he might have committed a thousand rascalities, but the powerful
Commission would have shielded and saved him every time. Nay, more--it
would have made a tremendous hubbub, and a showy and noisy pretense of
trying him--and then brought him out blameless and shown him to be an
abused and persecuted innocent and entitled to the public commiseration.

Why, the other day, in one of the commission trials, where a newspaper
editor was summoned as a prosecutor, they detailed a substitute for the
real delinquent, and tried him! There may be more joke than anything
else about that statement, but I heard it told, anyhow. And then it is
plausible--it is just characteristic of Star Chamber tactics.

You ought to see how it makes the Chief wince for any one to say a word
against a policeman; they are his offspring, and he feels all a father's
sensitiveness to remarks affecting their good name. It is natural that
he should, and it is wrong to do violence to this purely human trait
by making him swear that he will impartially try them for their crimes,
when the thing is perfectly impossible. He cannot be impartial--is it
human nature to judge with strict impartiality his own friends, his own
dependent, his own offspring?

But what I mean to speak of, if I ever get through with these
preliminary remarks, is the fact that the Flag yesterday said some thing
severe about the police, and right away the reporter was summoned to
stand before that terrible tribunal--the Police Commissioners--and prove
his charges. Poor innocent! Why, he never can prove anything. They will
come "Iowa justice" on him; he will swear he saw the prisoner do so and
so, and the Chief will say, "Captain Baker send up thirty-five policemen
to swear that they didn't see this thing done." They always manage to
have the bulk of testimony on their side, anyhow. If Pontius Pilate
was on the police he could crucify the Savior again with perfect
impunity--but he would have to let Barabbas and that other policeman
alone, who were crucified along with him, formerly.

There is a bill in the hands of a San Francisco legislator which
proposes to put the police appointing power in the hands of the Mayor,
the District Attorney, and the city and county attorney; and the trial
of policemen and power to punish or dismiss them, in the hands of the
county and police court prosecuting attorney. This would leave Chief
Burke nothing to do but attend to his own legitimate business of keeping
the police department up to their work all the time, and is just the
kind of bill that ought to pass. It would reduce the Chief from autocrat
of San Francisco, with absolute power, to the simple rank of Chief of
Police with no power to meddle in outside affairs or do anything but
mind his own particular business. He told me, not more than a week ago,
that such an arrangement would exactly suit him. Now we shall see if it
suits him. Don't you dare to send any log-rolling, wire-pulling squads
of policemen to Sacramento, Mr. Burke.

Territorial Enterprise, February 1866


I (together with the Bulletin) have watched, with deep concern, the
distress being wrought in our midst by spiritualism, during the past
week or two; I (like the Bulletin) have done all I could to crush out
the destroyer; I have published full reports of the seances of the
so called "Friends of Progress," and the Bulletin has left out
three columns of printed paragraphs pasted together by its New York
correspondent to make room for a report of the spiritualist Laura
Cuppy's lecture and I have followed in the Bulletin's wake and
shouted every few days "Another Victim of the Wretched Delusion called
Spiritualism!" and like that paper, have stated the number of persons it
took to hold him and where his mother resided.

In some instances which have come under my notice, these symptoms are
peculiarly sad. How touching it was, on Monday evening, in the Board of
Supervisors--a body which should be a concentration of the wisdom
and intellect of the city--to see Supervisor McCoppin, bereft of his
accustomed sprightliness, and subdued, subjugated by spiritualism, rise
in his place, and with bowed head, and stooping body, and frightened
eyes peering from under overhanging brows, ejaculate in sepulchral


Great Heavens! to hear him say that and then sit down with the air of
a man who has settled a mooted question forever, and done the work in a
solid, substantial manner.

And it touched me to the very heart to see the Mayor of the city--a
man of commanding presence and solemn demeanor--get up and repeat the
following, as if it were a part of a litany:

Three blind mice, See--how they--run. The farmer's wife, She cut off
their tails With the carving knife, See--how--they run."

He then sat down and leaned his face in his hands, and Dr. Rowell got up
and said:

"Spiritual department--paid spiritual department, when I was a
Republican I poisoned rebels--now I am a Democrat, I poison Republicans.
Woe, woe, woe, unto the traducers of the new light! woe, woe, woe, to
the enemies of the new light! woe, woe, woe, unto them that hear
the Cuppy and the Foye and the ministering spirits that fan us with
invisible wings as they sweep by, and whisper eternal truths in our
ears--woe, woe, woe!"

"Woe-haw, woe-haw, woe-haw-Buck You Duke!" said Mr. Ashbury,

Mr. McCoppin (counting on his fingers)--One ery--o'ery--ickery--Ann;
fillisy, fallallacy, Nicholas John; queevy, quavy, English
navy--stinklum, stanklum, Buck. Alas, my poor, poor country."

Mr. Shrader said, with deep feeling, but without gesticulation or
straining after effect:

"Let dogs delight to bark and bite, For 'tis their nature thus--Your
little hands were never made To tear out each other's eyes with."

My eyes filled with tears to see this body of really able men driveling
in this foolish way, and as I walked sadly out, I said "This is more
spiritualism; the Bulletin and I will soon have to record the departure
of the Board of Supervisors for Stockton. Poor creatures--to have kept
out of the asylum on one pretext or another so long, and then to fall at
last through so weak a thing as spiritualism."

[reprinted in the Golden Era, FEB. 18, 1866.]

Territorial Enterprise, February 1866


Saw something the other night which surprised me more than my late
investigations of spiritualism. It was some examples of the methods the
United States Signal Corps to telegraph information from point to point
on the battle-fields of the rebellion. The Signal Corps "mediums" were
Colonel Wicker, of the Russian Telegraph Expedition, and Mr. Jerome,
Secretary of Mr. Conway of the same, both of whom were distinguished
officers of Signal Corps throughout the war. Besides these two gentlemen
there are only two other members of the corps on the coast.

In the late war a signal party was always stationed on the highest
available point on the battle-field, and by waving flags they could
telegraph any desired messages, word for word, to other signal stations
ten miles off. At night, when torches were used, these messages have
been read forty miles away, with a powerful glass. The flag, or torch,
is waved right, left, up and down, and each movement represents a letter
of the alphabet, I suppose, inasmuch as any villainous combination of
letters and syllables you can get up can be readily telegraphed in this
way with a good deal of expedition. These gentlemen I speak of sent
messages the other night with walking-sticks, with their hands, their
fingers, their eyes and even their moustaches! It is a little too deep
for me.

One sat on one side of a large room, and the other at the opposite
side. I wrote a long sentence and gave it to Jerome--he made a few rapid
passes with his right arm like a crazy orchestra leader, and Colonel
Wicker called off the sentence word for word. I confess that I
suspected there was collusion there. So I whispered my next telegram
to Jerome--the passes were made as before, and Colonel Wicker read them
without a balk. I selected from a book a sentence which was full of
uncommon and unpronounceable foreign words, pointed it out to Colonel
Wicker, and he telegraphed it across to Jerome without a blunder. Then
I gave Jerome another telegram; he placed two fingers on his knees and
raised up one and then the other for a while, and the Colonel read the
message. I furnished the latter with the following written telegram:

"General Jackson was wounded at first fire."

He went through with a series of elaborate winks with his eyes, and that
other signal-sharp repeated the sentence correctly. I wrote:

"Thirteen additional cases of cholera reported this morning."

The accomplished Colonel telegraphed it to his confederate by simply
stroking his moustache. There must be a horrible imposition about this
thing somewhere, but I cannot get at it. They say that when they are in
lecture rooms and parlors whence they are not close enough to speak
to each other, they telegraph their comment on the company with their
fingers, on their moustaches, or by gently refreshing themselves with a

The signal Corps was one of the most important arms of the military
service in the late war. It saved many a battle to the Union that must
otherwise have been lost. Yet many of the officers of the army did not
believe in its efficiency, regarded it as an ornamental innovation, and
bore it strong ill-will. At the battle of Winchester, the officer
in command after General Shields was wounded, had pressing need of
reinforcements. The reserve were in full view six miles away. The Acting
General asked a signal officer if he could order up a brigade. He said
he could. "Then do it," said the General; "but," said he, "to make
everything sure, I will dispatch an orderly for the reinforcements." The
signal officer set his flags waving, and telegraphed: "Send up a brigade
on the double-quick." Before the orderly was a hundred yards off, the
anxious General gazing through his field glass, saw a brigade wheel into
the plain, peel their coats and knapsacks off and throw them down, and
come sweeping across on the double-quick. "By G--. here they come!--send
back the orderly," said the General--"but I didn't think it could be

[reprinted in the Golden Era, FEB. 18, 1866]

Territorial Enterprise, February 25-28, 1866

[This column has been partially reconstructed from the sketches that
were later reprinted in the first edition of The Celebrated Jumping Frog
of Calaveras County and Other Sketches.]


SAN FRANCISCO, February 23.


The steamer Ajax returned from her pioneer trip to Honolulu yesterday
about noon, bringing forty or fifty passengers and a large quantity of
freight. She was fourteen days and four hours going down, and between
eleven and twelve days coming back. Her crowd of invited guests had a
delightful time at Honolulu visiting citizens and planters, dining out,
driving here and there, attending parties and prospecting all localities
of interest. The people neglected no opportunity of making the visit an
agreeable one to their guests, and even his Majesty the King gave them a
royal feast.

I was talking to one of the voyageurs a while ago, and he said that
in most respects--in nearly all respects, in fact--the trip was a
remarkably pleasant one, "but," said he, (and here he slowly shook his
head and sighed as one who recalls a sorrowful reminiscence,) "I copper
the down trip!" From what I can learn of the experiences of that stormy
passage, I am satisfied that they all "copper" that portion of the
excursion. The ship left San Francisco in the rain, and for twelve days
the excursionists heaved and tossed in the midst of a terrific tempest.
The first news that came back here said that the passengers on the Ajax
had spent most of the down trip on their knees in prayer. Today their
friends greeted them with a hearty handshake and then felt their
knees to see if they were "calloused." I refer only to the gentlemen
travelers, of course.

[The storm] tore her light spars and rigging all to shreds and
splinters, upset all furniture that could be upset, and spilled
passengers around and knocked them hither and thither with a perfect
looseness. For forth-eight hours no table could be set, and every body
had to eat as best they might under the circumstances. Most of the party
went hungry, though, and attended to their praying. But there was one
set of "seven-up" players who nailed a card table to the floor and stuck
to their game through thick and thin. Captain Fretz, of the Bank of
California, a man of great coolness and presence of mind, was of
this party. One night the storm suddenly culminated in a climax of
unparalleled fury; the vessel went down on her beam ends, and everything
let go with a crash--passengers, tables, cards, bottles--every thing
came clattering to the floor in a chaos of disorder and confusion. In
a moment fifty sore distressed and pleading voices ejaculated, "O God!
help us in our extremity!" and one voice rang out clear and sharp above
the plaintive chorus and said, "Remember, boys, I played the tray for
low!" It was one of the gentlemen I have mentioned who spoke. And the
remark showed good presence of mind and an eye to business.

Lewis Leland, of the Occidental, was a passenger. There were some savage
grizzly bears chained in cages on deck. One night, in the midst of a
hurricane, which was accompanied by rain and thunder and lightning, Mr.
Leland came up, on his way to bed. Just as he stepped into the pitchy
darkness of the deck and reeled to the still more pitchy motion of
the vessel, (bad,) the captain sang out hoarsely through his
speaking-trumpet, "Bear a hand aft, there!" The words were sadly marred
and jumbled by the roaring wind. Mr. Leland thought the captain said,
"The bears are after your there!" and he "let go all holts" and went
down into his boots. He murmured, "I knew how it was going to be--I
just knew it from the start--I said all along that those bears would
get loose some time; and now I'll be the first man that they'll snatch.
Captain! captain!--can't hear me--storm roars so! O God! what a fate! I
have avoided wild beasts all my life, and now to be eaten by a grizzly
bear in the middle of the ocean, a thousand miles from land! Captain! O
captain!--bless my soul, there's one of them--I've got to cut and run!"
And he did cut and run, and smashed through the first stateroom he came
to. A gentleman and his wife were in it. The gentleman exclaimed, "Who's
that?" The refugee gasped out, "O great Scotland! those bears are loose,
and just raising merry hell all over the ship!" and sank down exhausted.
The gentleman sprang out of bed and locked the door, and prepared for a
siege. After a while, no assault being made, a reconnoissance was made
from the window and a vivid flash of lightning revealed a clear deck.
Mr. Leland then made a dart for his own stateroom, gained it, locked
himself in, and felt that his body's salvation was accomplished, and
by little less than a miracle. The next day the subject of this memoir,
though still very feeble and nervous, had the hardihood to make a joke
upon his adventure. He said that when he found himself in so tight a
place (as he thought) he didn't bear it with much fortitude, and when
he found himself safe at last in his state-room, he regarded it as the
bearest escape he had ever had in his life. He then went to bed, and
did not get up again for nine days. This unquestionably bad joke cast
a gloom over the whole ship's company, and no effort was sufficient to
restore their wonted cheerfulness until the vessel reached her port, and
other scenes erased it from their memories.

The Ajax is advertised to sail for Honolulu again on the 1st of March.


The splendid band of the old U. S. Second Artillery, so long under the
late General DeRussey when he was at the head of the Engineer Corps of
the United States and stationed at Fortress Monroe, kindly cherishing
the memory of their beloved old commander, went out to South Park, last
night, after the ceremonies and festivities of Washington's birthday
were over, and serenaded Mrs. DeRussey and her family. It was a graceful
and touching tribute, and showed how well the lads esteemed the old
soldier who was always so proud of them. No music could have been imbued
with more tender expression than they breathed into their first piece:

"Should auld acquaintance be forgot,

And never brought to mind?"

There is moving pathos in speech and eloquence sways the feelings with a
mighty power, but music goes straight to the heart after all.

The first thing the Second Artillery did when they landed here from the
East a month or two before the old General died, was to come out here
with their band and serenade him. He was in tolerable health, then, and
sat up in his parlor in uniform and listened to their martial music,
the proudest man in San Francisco. Such marks of regard from "his boys"
always touched him and gratified him.


Colonel Conway and his junior officers and assistants leave to-day
in the steamer Active to resume operations in British Columbia on his
division of the Russian Telegraph expedition. He will take a vast
amount of wire and telegraphic traps of various kinds [remainder of this
passage is missing].


This day, many years ago precisely, George Washington was born. How full
of significance the thought! Especially to those among us who have had
a similar experience, though subsequently; and still more especially to
the young, who should take him for a model and faithfully try to be
like him, undeterred by the frequency with which the same thing has
been attempted by American youths before them and not satisfactorily
accomplished. George Washington was the youngest of nine children, eight
of whom were the offspring of his uncle and his aunt. As a boy he gave
no promise of the greatness he was one day to achieve. He was ignorant
of the commonest accomplishments of youth. He could not even lie. But
then he never had any of those precious advantages which are within the
reach of the humblest of the boys of the present day. Any boy can lie,
now. I could lie before I could stand--yet this sort of sprightliness
was so common in our family that little notice was taken of it. Young
George appears to have had no sagacity whatever. It is related of him
that he once chopped down his father's favorite cherry tree, and then
didn't know enough to keep dark about it. He came near going to sea,
once, as a midshipman; but when his mother represented to him that he
must necessarily be absent when he was away from home, and that this
must continue to be the case until he got back, the sad truth struck
him so forcibly that he ordered his trunk ashore, and quietly but firmly
refused to serve in the navy and fight the battles of his king so long
as the effect of it would be to discommode his mother. The great rule
of his life was, that procrastination was the thief of time, and that
we should always do unto others. This is the golden rule. Therefore, he
would never discommode his mother.

Young George Washington was actuated in all things, by the highest and
purest principles of morality, justice and right. He was a model in
every way worthy of the emulation of youth. Young George was always
prompt and faithful in the discharge of every duty. It has been said of
him, by the historian, that he was always on hand, like a thousand of
brick. And well deserved was this noble compliment. The aggregate of
the building material specified might have been largely increased--might
have been doubled--even without doing full justice to these high
qualities in the subject of this sketch. Indeed, it would hardly be
possible to express in bricks the exceeding promptness and fidelity of
young George Washington. His was a soul whose manifold excellencies were
beyond the ken and computation of mathematics, and bricks are, at the
least, but an inadequate vehicle for the conveyance of a comprehension
of the moral sublimity of a nature so pure as his.

Young George W. was a surveyor in early life--a surveyor of an inland
port--a sort of county surveyor; and under a commission from Gov.
Dinwiddie, he set out to survey his way four hundred miles through a
trackless forest, infested with Indians, to procure the liberation of
some English prisoners. The historian says the Indians were the most
depraved of their species, and did nothing but lay for white men, whom
they killed for the sake of robbing them. Considering that white men
only traveled through their country at the rate of one a year, they were
probably unable to do what might be termed a land-office business in
their line. They did not rob young G. W.; one savage made the attempt,
but failed; he fired at the subject of this sketch from behind a tree,
but the subject of this sketch immediately snaked him out from behind
the tree and took him prisoner.

The long journey failed of success; the French would not give up the
prisoners, and Wash went sadly back home again. A regiment was raised
to go and make a rescue, and he took command of it. He caught the French
out in the rain and tackled them with great intrepidity. He defeated
them in ten minutes, and their commander handed in his checks. This was
the battle of Great Meadows.

After this, a good while, George Washington became Commander-in-Chief of
the American armies, and had an exceedingly dusty time of it all through
the Revolution. But every now and then he turned a jack from the bottom
and surprised the enemy. He kept up his lick for seven long years, and
hazed the British from Harrisburg to Halifax--and America was free! He
served two terms as President, and would have been President yet if he
had lived--even so did the people honor the Father of his Country. Let
the youth of America take his incomparable character for a model and
try it one jolt, anyhow. Success is possible--let them remember
that--success is possible, though there are chances against it.

I could continue this biography, with profit to the rising generation,
but I shall have to drop the subject at present, because of other
matters which must be attended to.

Territorial Enterprise, February 1866


[possibly written or published on February 25, 1866]

I arrived in the City of Saloons this morning at 3 o'clock, in company
with several other disreputable characters, on board the good steamer
Antelope, Captain Poole, commander. I know I am departing from usage
in calling Sacramento the City of Saloons instead of the City of the
Plains, but I have my justification--I have not found any plains, here,
yet, but I have been in most of the saloons, and there are a good many
of them. You can shut your eyes and march into the first door you come
to and call for a drink, and the chances are that you will get it. And
in a good many instances, after you have assuaged your thirst, you can
lay down a twenty and remark that you "copper the ace," and you will
find that facilities for coppering the ace are right there in the back
room. In addition to the saloons, there are quite a number of mercantile
houses and private dwellings. They have already got one capitol here,
and will have another when they get it done. They will have fine
dedicatory ceremonies when they get it done, but you will have time to
prepare for that--you needn't rush down here right away by express. You
can come as slow freight and arrive in time to get a good seat.


The houses in the principal thoroughfares here are set down about eight
feet below the street level. This system has its advantages. First--It
is unique. Secondly--It secures to the citizen a firm, dry street in
high water, whereon to run his errands and do her shopping, and thus
does away with the expensive and perilous canoe. Thirdly--It makes the
first floors shady, very shady, and this is a great thing in a warm
climate. Fourthly--It enables the inquiring stranger to rest his elbows
on the second story window sill and look in and criticize the bedroom
arrangements of the citizens. Fifthly--It benefits the plebeian
second floor boarders-at the expense of the bloated aristocracy of the
first--that is to say, it brings the plebeians down to the first floor
and degrades the aristocrats to the cellar. Lastly--Some persons call
it a priceless blessing because children who fall out of second story
windows now, cannot break their necks as they formerly did--but that
this can strictly be regarded in the light of a blessing, is, of course,
open to grave argument.

But joking aside, the energy and the enterprise the Sacramentans have
shown in making this expensive grade improvement and raising their
houses up to its level is in every way creditable to them, and is a
sufficient refutation of the slander so often leveled at them that they
are discouraged by the floods, lack confidence in their ability to
make their town a success, and are without energy. A lazy and hopeless
population would hardly enter upon such costly experiments as these when
there is so much high ground in the State which they could fly to if
they chose.


This is the mildest, balmiest, pleasantest climate one can imagine. The
evenings are especially delightful--neither too warm nor too cold. I
wonder if it is always so?


I got more sleep this morning than I needed. When I got tired, very
tired, walking around, and went to bed in room No. 121, Orleans Hotel,
about sunrise, I asked the clerk to have me called at a quarter past 9
o'clock. The request was complied with, punctually. As I was about to
roll out of bed I heard it raining. I said to myself, I cannot knock
around town in this kind of weather, and so I may as well lie here and
enjoy the rain. I am like everybody else in that I love to lie abed and
listen to the soothing sound of pattering rain-drops, and muse upon
old times and old scenes of by-gone days. While I was a happy, careless
schoolboy again, (in imagination,) I dropped off to sleep. After a while
I woke up--still raining. I said to myself, it will stop directly--I
will dream again--there is time enough. Just as (in memory) I was caught
by my mother clandestinely putting up some quince preserves in a rag to
take to my little sweetheart at school, I dropped off to sleep again,
to the soft music of the pattering rain. I woke up again, after a while.
Still raining! I said. This will never do. I shall be so late that
I shall get nothing done. I could dream no more; I was getting too
impatient for that. I lay there and fidgeted for an hour and a half,
listening with nervous anxiety to detect the least evidence of a
disposition to "let up" on the part of the rain. But it was of no use.
It rained on steadily, just the same. So, finally, I said: I can't stand
this; I will go to the window and see if the clouds are breaking, at any
rate. I looked up, and the sun was blazing overhead. I looked down--and
then I "gritted my teeth" and said: "Oh, d__n a d __d landlord that
would keep a d__d fountain in his back yard!"

After mature and unimpassioned deliberation, I am still of the opinion
that that profanity was justifiable under the circumstances.


I got down stairs at ten minutes past 12, and went up to the land lord,
who is a large, fine-looking man, with a chest on him which must
have made him a most powerful man before it slid down, and said, "Is
breakfast ready?"

"Is breakfast ready?" said he.

"Yes--is breakfast READY?"

"Not quite," he says, with the utmost urbanity, "not quite; you have
arisen too early, my son, by a matter of eighteen hours as near as I can
come at it."

Humph! I said to myself, these people go slow up here; it is a wonder to
me that they ever get up at all.

"Ah, well," said I, "it don't matter--it don't matter. But, ah--perhaps
you design to have lunch this week, some time?"

"Yes," he says, "I have designed all along to have lunch this week, and
by a most happy coincidence you have arrived on the very day. Walk into
the dining room."

As I walked forward I cast a glance of chagrin over my shoulder and
observed, "Old Smarty from Mud Springs, I apprehend."

And he murmured, "Young Lunar Caustic from San Francisco, no doubt."

Well, let it pass. If I didn't make anything off that old man in the way
of "sass," I cleaned out his lunch table, anyhow. I calculated to get
ahead of him some way. And yet I don't know but the old scallawag
came out pretty fair, after all. Because I only staid in his hotel
twenty-four hours and ate one meal, and he charged me five dollars for
it. If I were not just ready to start back to the bay, now, I believe I
would go and tackle him once more. If I only had a fair chance, that old
man is not any smarter than I am. (I will risk something that it makes
him squirm every time I call him "that old man," in this letter. People
who voted for General Washington don't like to be reminded that they
are old.) But I like the old man, and I like his hotel too, barring the
d---- barring the fountain I should say.


As I was saying, I took lunch, and then hurried out to attend to
business--that is to say, I hurried out to look after Mr. John Paul's
baggage. Mr. John Paul is the San Francisco correspondent of the
Sacramento Union, and "goes fixed." I was down at the wharf when the
Antelope was about to leave San Francisco, and Captain Poole came to
me and said Mr. Paul was going up with him, and he knew by the way he
talked that he was going to travel with a good deal of baggage, and it
would be quite a favor if I would go along and help look after a portion
of it. The Captain then requested Mr. Asa Nudd, and Lieutenant Elhs, and
Mr. Bill Stephenson, treasurer of Maguire's Opera House, to keep an eye
on portions of Mr. Paul's baggage, also. They cheerfully assented. And
by and by Mr. Paul made his appearance, and brought his baggage with
him, on a couple of drays. And it consisted of nothing in the world but
a toy carpet-sack like a woman's reticule, and had a pair of socks and
a tooth-brush in it. We saw in a moment that all that talk of Mr. Paul's
had been merely for effect, and that there was really no use in all of
us going to Sacramento to look after his baggage; but inasmuch as we
had already shipped for the voyage, we concluded to go on. We liked Mr.
Paul, and it was a pleasure to us to humor his harmless vanity about
his little baggage. Therefore when he said to the chief mate, "Will you
please to send some men to get that baggage aboard?" we proceeded
to superintend the transportation with becoming ceremony. It was as
gratifying to us as it was to Mr. Paul himself, when the second mate
afterward reported that the boat was "down by the head" so that
she wouldn't steer, and the Captain said, "It's that baggage, I
suppose--move it aft." We had a very pleasant trip of it to Sacramento,
and said nothing to disabuse the passengers minds when we found that
Paul had disseminated the impression that he had three or four tons of
baggage aboard. After we landed at Sacramento there was the infernalest
rumbling and thundering of trunks on the main deck for two hours that
can be imagined. Finally a passenger who could not sleep for the jarring
and the noise, hailed Mr. Bill Stephenson and said he wondered what all
the racket was about. Mr. Stephenson said, "It'll be over pretty soon,
now--they've been getting that there John Paul's baggage ashore."

I have made this letter so long that I shall have to chop it in two at
this point, and send you the remainder of it to-morrow.

Territorial Enterprise, October 30 or 31, 1866

[Enterprise Staff report on upcoming Twain lecture]

Tomorrow night our citizens will be afforded an opportunity to
gratify their curiosity and offer a fitting testimonial to their
fellow-townsman, Mark Twain, who will do up the Sandwich Islands at the
Opera House on that occasion.

The enthusiasm with which his lecture was everywhere greeted is still
ringing throughout California, and now that his foot is in his native
heath, we expect to see the very mountains shake with a tempest of

Our state can justly claim Mark Twain as its own peculiar production.
It was while a resident here and associated with the Enterprise that he
assumed the name of Mark Twain and developed that rich and inexhaustible
vein of humor which has made the title famous. True he has since
warmed his fancy in tropical climes and expanded his thought by ocean
pilgrimage and heated his eloquence in volcanic fires; but all these
rest upon the solid foundation which was originally laid in our native
alkali and sagebrush.

From present appearances he will receive an ovation seldom if ever
equalled in our city and it is pleasing to know that such an event will
be equally gratifying to the audience and speaker.

Territorial Enterprise, November 1 or 2, 1866

[Enterprise Staff report on Mark Twain's lecture]

One of the largest and most fashionable audiences that ever graced
the Opera House was in attendance last evening on the occasion of Mark
Twain's lecture on the Sandwich Islands. The entire dress circle and the
greater portion of the parquette were filled with ladies while all the
available space for extra seats and standing room was occupied. It was a
magnificent tribute to the lecturer from his old friends. Of the lecture
itself we can only speak in general terms as its points are too numerous
and varied to admit of special mention.

Combining the most valuable statistical and general information with
passages of drollest humor, all delivered in the peculiar and inimitable
style of the author in the lecture, it constitutes an entertainment of
rare excellence and intelligence. The lecture will be delivered in the
principal towns throughout the state, but we are unable at present to
mention definitely any time or place.

In a day or two the entire programme will be arranged. Meanwhile our
neighboring towns can well afford to wait patiently in anticipation of a
rare treat.

Territorial Enterprise, November 4, 1866


The following characteristic card from Mark Twain is in reply to a
general invitation of the residents of Carson extended to him to visit
the State Capital and deliver his lecture on the Sandwich Islands:


VIRGINIA, November 1.

His Excellency H. G. Blasdel, Governor, and Messrs. A. Helm, O. A. F.
Gilbert, H. F. Rice and others:

Gentlemen: Your kind and cordial invitation to lecture before my old
friends in Carson has reached me, and I hasten to thank you gratefully
for this generous recognition--this generous toleration, I should
say--of one who has shamefully deserted the high office of Governor of
the Third House of Nevada and gone into the Missionary business, thus
leaving you to the mercy of scheming politicians--an act which, but for
your forgiving disposition, must have stamped my name with infamy.

I take a natural pride in being welcomed home by so long a list of old
personal friends, and shall do my level best to please them, hoping at
the same time that they will be more indulgent toward my shortcomings
than they would feel called upon to be toward those of a stranger.

Kindly thanking you again, gentlemen, I gladly accept your invitation,
and shall appear on the stage of the Carson Theatre on Saturday evening,
November 3d, and disgorge a few lines and as much truth as I can pump
out without damaging my constitution.

Yours sincerely,


Ex-Gov. Third House, and late Independent Missionary to the Sandwich

P.S.--I would have answered yesterday, but I was on the sick list, and I
thought I had better wait a day and see whether I was going to get well
or not.


Territorial Enterprise, Sunday, November 11, 1866.]

[written after Twain was a victim of a practical joke robbery]


Last night I lectured in Gold Hill, on the Sandwich Islands. At ten
o'clock I started on foot to Virginia, to meet a lot of personal friends
who were going to set up all night with me and start me off in good
shape for San Francisco in the morning. This social programme proved my
downfall. But for it, I would have remained in Gold Hill. As we "raised
the hill" and straightened up on the "Divide," a man just ahead of us
(Mac, my agent, and myself), blew an ordinary policemen's whistle, and
Mac said, "Thunder! this is an improvement--they didn't use to keep
policemen on the Divide." I coincided. The infernal whistle was only a
signal to you road agents. About half a minute afterwards, a small man
emerged from some ambuscade or other and crowded close up to me. I was
smoking and supposed he wanted a light. But this humorist instead of
asking for a light, thrust a horrible six-shooter in my face and
simply said, "Stand and deliver!" I said, "My son, your arguments are
powerful--take what I have, but uncock that infamous pistol." The young
man uncocked the pistol (but he requested three other gentlemen to
present theirs at my head) and then he took all the money I had ($20 or
$25), and my watch. Then he said to one of his party, "Beauregard, go
through that man!"--meaning Mac--and the distinguished rebel did go
through Mac. Then the little Captain said, "Stonewall Jackson, seat
these men by the roadside, and hide yourself; if they move within five
minutes, blow their brains out!" Stonewall said, "All right, sire." Then
the party (six in number) started toward Virginia and disappeared.

Now, I want to say to you road agents as follows:

My watch was given to me by Judge Sandy Baldwin and Theodore Winters,
and I value it above anything else I own. If you will send that to me
(to the Enterprise office, or to any prominent man in San Francisco)
you may keep the money and welcome. You know you got all the money Mac
had--and Mac is an orphan--and besides, the money he had belonged to me.

Adieu, my romantic young friends.


Territorial Enterprise, December 22, 1867



WASHINGTON, December 4, 1867

EDS. ENTERPRISE:--To write "EDS. ENTERPRISE" seems a good deal like
coming home again--a good deal like coming home again--but in a dream
wherein your hand takes hold of the same old gate and opens it in the
same old way, and you enter and find the homestead as you left it:
flowers under window, shrubbery in the front yard, old bottles in the
retiracy of the corners. But one never finds home just exactly as he saw
it in a dream; and by the same token, although (as you will observe by
the slashing way in which I have dashed off that "EDS. ENTERPRISE,") I
open the gate as familiarly as ever. I suppose I won't be likely to find
any of the other well-remembered ornaments about your front yard but the
old bottles. That sounds unkind, may be, but behold, truth is stranger
than fiction, and one should be just, before he is generous.

Scurrilous Weather.

I have been here a matter of ten days, but I do not know much about the
place yet. There is too much weather. There is too much of it, and yet
that is not the principal trouble. It is the quality rather than the
quantity of it that I complain of; and more than against its quantity
and its quality combined am I embittered against its character. It is
tricky, it is changeable, it is to the last degree unreliable. It has
catered for a political atmosphere so long that it has come at last to
be thoroughly imbued with the political nature. As politics go, so goes
the weather. It trims to suit every phase of sentiment, and is always
ready. To-day it is a Democrat, to-morrow a Radical, the next day
neither one thing nor the other. If a Johnson man goes over to the other
side, it rains; if a Radical deserts to the Administration, it snows; if
New York goes Democratic, it blows--naturally enough; if Grant expresses
an opinion between two whiffs of smoke, it spits a little sleet
uneasily; if all is quiet on the Potomac of politics, one sees only the
soft haze of Indian summer from the Capitol windows; if the President is
quiet, the sun comes out; if he touches the tender gold market, it
turns up cold and freezes out the speculators; if he hints at foreign
troubles, it hails; if he threatens Congress, it thunders; if treason
and impeachment are broached, lo, there is an earthquake!

If you are posted on politics, you are posted on the weather. I cannot
manage either; when I go out with an umbrella, the sun shines; if I
go without it, it rains; if I have my overcoat with me, I am bound to
roast--if I haven't, I am bound to freeze. Some people like Washington
weather. I don't. Some people admire mixed weather. I prefer to take
mine "straight."

So I have hardly been anywhere. If you were to bet on a storm and
"copper" an earthquake, and lost; and then bet on an earthquake and
"coppered" the storm, and lost again, you would let the next deal go
by, maybe. You would not want to back your judgment any more for the
present. That is about the way I feel. I am waiting for my luck to

The Capitol and Congress

I have been to the Capitol, several times, to look at it--almost to
worship it; for surely it must be the most exquisitely beautiful edifice
that exists on earth to-day. True, there are many buildings that are
grander, and statelier, and half a dozen times as large, but if there
is one that is so symmetrical, so graceful, so fascinating to the eye, I
have not heard of it--unquestionably I have not seen it. A man could
no more get tired of looking at it than he could tire of sunset in the
mountains or moonlight on the sea.

I have been within, among the law-makers, also. They look well--both
houses. I was here fourteen years ago, and remember what I saw then,
perfectly well. I saw in the House Mr. Douglas and a few other great
men. The mass of the remainder seemed to be a mob of empty headed
whipper-snappers that had only come to Congress to make incessant
motions, propose eternal amendments, and rise to everlasting points of
order. They glances at the galleries oftenor [sic] than they looked at
the Speaker; they put their feet on their desks as if they were in a
beer-mill; they made more racket than a rookery, and let on to know more
than any body of men ever did know or ever could know by any possibility

But the House I find here now is composed chiefly of grave, dignified
men beyond the middle age, and look worthy of their high position.
General Banks is the handsomest member, perhaps. General Butler is the
homeliest. In his comeliness, Banks has competitors. Some of the members
embellish a desk with a book, occasionally, but not frequently. Many of
them pay only questionable attention while the Chaplain is on duty,
but they never catch flies while he is praying. I noticed that,
particularly, and was deeply touched by it; I was gratified more than
tongue can tell; for the sake of my country, I was proud of it.

The Senate is a fine body of men, and averages well in the matter of
brains. Strangely enough, the two Nevada Senators are the handsomest men
in the company--the handsomest men in Congress, indeed, for Governor
Nye is handsomer than General Banks; and Stewart is handsomer than the
balance of the tribe.

A Mining College Proposed.

Which reminds me that Stewart has just introduced a bill for the
founding of a national mining school. If it carries, in its present
shape, it will be a most excellent thing for the whole mining community,
from Pike's Peak to the Pacific, and from the northern gold fields clear
down to Mexico. Because, it ultimately entirely removes the Government
tax upon bullion. That tax foots up $300,000, now ($100,000 of it comes
out of Nevada's pocket alone), and it must augment, year by year. It is
proposed to devote all of next year's tax to the buildings, etc., for
the school; after that (say 4 or 5 years), half the tax will be spent on
the school and the other half invested in United States securities for
the benefit of the school, until the fund shall be large enough to yield
sufficient interest to carry on the institution without touching
the principal. Then, the Government tax on bullion will be abolished

The mining school will be free to all. Assays will be made for anybody,
at a cost of a few cents, instead of dollars. The mining knowledge of
all countries will be gathered together here, tested, classified, and
diffused through our mining communities by means of inspections of the
mines and free lectures to the miners by the faculty of the college,
etc. The Secretary of the Treasury thinks the expense of mining will be
materially lessened and the yield of bullion vastly increased by means
of such a school as Mr. Stewart has proposed. It is suggested that the
institution be located somewhere in your vicinity, on the Truckee, on
the line of the Pacific Railroad. Whether the measure will carry or not,
no man can tell. That it should carry, every man on the "coast" will
unquestionably desire.

The First Effects of the Message.

The President's Message is making a howl among the Republicans--serenity
sits upon the brow of Democracy. The Republican Congressmen say it is
insolent to Congress; the Democrats say it is a mild, sweet document,
free from guile. But one thing is very sure: the message has weakened
the President. Impeachment was dead, day before yesterday. It would
rise up and make a strong fight to-day if it were pushed with energy
and tact. But it won't be done, I suppose. I foresee that the weather is
going to throw some double summersets, now, right away. It will keep up
with these convulsions in politics or wear out the elements trying. I
must stand by with parasols, umbrellas and overcoats until the weather
is reconstructed.


S. T. Gage of your Internal Revenue service, is here on business
connected with his office. He is a little off color as to his overcoat,
but his pantaloons are up to regulation. He looks well, and is attending
strictly to business and behaving himself.

John Allman is here also, looking up business in the mail contract line.

I have seen your former Congressman, Harry Worthington. He dresses
mighty well for a white man in these universal suffrage times. His home
is at Omaha--Omaha the Sublime. When New York and other great States
went Democratic, Omaha went handsomely Republican. They say it was
because Harry was there. Burke is here, now, attending to business. He
has contracts for feeding a tribe of Indians out there on the Plains.
He has a great opportunity, now, to teach us what high, unselfish
patriotism--and he knows it. He will do it. He will feed those Indians
with his country's interest ever in his heart, and his worshipping eyes
turned always toward her shrine--and when he gets done feeding them,
behold not a devil of a redskin in all his gang will be in a condition
to go on the warpath in the spring! Harry Worthington is a first rate
fellow, and takes a joke kindly, and we all want to see him prosper. He
is going to do well out of this thing. I feel certain of it. Of course
he don't want it mentioned, outside of your own circle, but his main
business here is to get one more tribe, because, the way he is averaging
the rations now, the tribe he has got won't be likely to hold out long,
and of course he wants something to fall back on. He thinks he will be
perfectly safe if he can get another tribe.

There are plenty more Nevadians here. I will attend to them in my next.


Territorial Enterprise, January 7, 1868




WASHINGTON, December 16, 1867


It is voluminous, and has remarks and statistics concerning all the
mines of any importance--figures that will show at a glance what each
has done, what it is doing, and what it has cost and is costing to do
it; what the profits are, what the losses are, etc. It contains as
good information as could be got concerning new districts and their
prospects. To get this varied information and these manifold statistics
Mr. Browne had to employ persons residing in the several mining
localities to furnish them. These gentlemen have performed their duties
pretty faithfully, but of course they have yielded to the natural mining
instinct to glorify the leads of their part of the country with weighty
adjectives; we were all prone to do that in our day and generation. They
speak of "prodigious veins" and "magnificent deposits" and "wonderful
richness," etc., and behold their tongues are touched with inspiration
and they prophecy! They reveal the things that shall come to pass, with
the easy confidence of Elishas newly invested with the enchanted mantle.
They trench upon the jurisdiction of the Almighty, and disclose
the secrets of the Kingdom of Heaven to Congress with a comfortable
indifference to consequences that could originate nowhere on earth save
in the placid breast of an honest miner. I understand this thing--we all
do, that have been miners. For all miners are, by nature and instinct,

We understand it, but Congress wouldn't. So it has been necessary to
drive a pen straight through all these revelations of the things that
are to come. The most shining prophecies are to be utterly extinguished.
In truth, all the prophecies that are not manifestly authorized from on
high, will be pitilessly expunged. Mr. Brown[e] wishes the report to be
received with the utmost good faith by the world, and to bear upon its
face the evidences that it is worthy of such a reception. Consequently
it will not do to bring suspicion upon it with prophecies in this age of
skepticism. The rich deposits or adjectives that occur all through the
sub-reports will be expunged also, and for the same reason that the
words of prophecy are condemned. No "puffs" will be allowed to remain,
lest they impair the confidence of the public in the truthfulness of the
book. Therefore, you can now understand that, voluminous as the work is,
it must all be re-written, and thoroughly weeded of its defects. This is
a vast labor, and much time and patience will have to be devoted to it.
The book will not be ready for the press for some time yet. The reports
from all the great mines--I mean statistics of their yield of ores in
tons, and the result of the same in bullion, etc., will be brought up
to about the present time, and the book be thereby made as complete as

The moral of this long report--the verdict of it--may be summed up in a
few sentences: Save in the great underground gravel channels, "placer"
mining is finished--is dead. Nothing but deep mining--vein mining--will
do now. The muscle mining of the pan and shovel must give place to
critical science. Miners must adjourn from the exhausted hillsides to
the chemist's laboratory and be educated to the higher grades of their
profession. Therefore, the proposed National School of Mines is become a
necessity. Such is the verdict.


Hovey is here. General Hovey of Nevada. He is a member of the Senate, I
think. I recollect that he ran for that position.

Mr. Stowe is here, also--Stowe of Carson City--once Sergeant-At-Arms of
the Legislature. The nation gets along better, now.

There are other Nevadians in Washington. Thomas D. Julien of Humboldt,
John S. Mayhugh of Esmeralda (in Maryland just at present), George T.
Terry of Austin, Robert M. Howland and wife are expected.

Julien is looking after his Indian affairs. He has claims. His prospects
promise well.

S. T. Gage has gone to Ohio. He thinks of returning to Nevada overland.
He desires that no mention shall be made of it.

Judge McCorkle of your city is here and will sail for the Pacific in the
course of a week or two. He has been visiting his home in Ohio.

S. E. Huse of Gold Hill is here, also. He has been looking at lands in
Virginia and Iowa, with a view to investing; likes Iowa best. He will
return to Nevada very shortly, to stay a while.

J. M. Walker comes to Washington occasionally. He looks well, and is
prosperous. I hear that he is speculating in lands and one thing
or another in Virginia, and that he has bought him a homestead at
Binghamton, New York, for which he paid $25,000.

Pat Hickey of the city of Virginia and other places in Nevada, was here
the other night, so I am told. I am sorry I failed to see him. But I
hear that he is flourishing, and, from what I can gather, he was feeling
well. His toast was the same one ("Be kind to your friends," and he had
fifty to drink it) that beat Beggs that snowy night that Beggs and I
got the school report especially for the Virginia Union, and somehow
it appeared in the ENTERPRISE in the most mysterious manner the next
morning and failed to appear where it was intended to appear. But if
it were the last act of my life I would affirm that it was through no
connivance of mine. The scrub who had charge of the public school would
not let me have the report for the ENTERPRISE, because it had said he
was an ass, which was true, and if he had been half a man he would have
been flattered by it. But he would give it to Beggs, because he had
nothing against the Union particularly. I found Beggs at 8 o'clock in
the evening. He had his little dark lantern. That looked badly. Because
whenever Beggs got out his lantern there was going to be trouble. We
went down and got the report, and, coming back through the driving snow,
we met Pat Hickey, and went in and drank "Be kind to your friends." It
took forty minutes to do it properly, and then Beggs proposed, himself,
to go to the ENTERPRISE and leave a copy of the report, which was done.
It was duly copied, and he took the original and started to go to
the Union with it. At midnight, when we were going home, we passed
McCluskey's and heard a familiar voice. We went in, and Beggs was
standing on a table reading the manuscript school report by the light
of his lantern to a crowd of mellow but singularly appreciative
and enthusiastic Cornishmen from the Ophir nightshifts, who didn't
understand a word of it, but seemed to like it all the better on that
account. They cheered all the pauses, with the strictest impartiality.
John Church entered at the same moment we did--looking angry, Beggs
stopped, and smiled down upon Church his smile of naive suavity--a smile
that was gilded all over with honest pride, with conscious merit--with
triumph!--and said: "I ain't (e-uck!) I ain't to be depended on when I
carry my lantern, ain't I! By G--, I've had this old report four hours!"
And so he had. That was why the Union was obliged to go to press
without it. Beggs was a good fellow; and no one can say that I ever
intentionally helped him to get into trouble. I wish I could have
seen Pat Hickey the other night. They say he had all Williards' Hotel
responding to his, "Be kind to your friends" till well along toward

E. A. Pretois, formerly of Virginia and Sacramento, is Senator Stewart's
private secretary, now.


Mr. Stewart made a speech in the Senate a day or two ago in reply to
Garritt Davis of Kentucky. Davis's was a carefully prepared manuscript
speech wherein he attempted to show that the tendency of legislation
at present could have but one result if persisted in--the result of
investing the negro with the power to rule over white men and dictate
the course they should pursue. Stewart's reply was extemporaneous, and
consequently had more fire in it, perhaps, than polish. The point it
made was the manifestly strong one that one negro cannot rule or dictate
to ten white men; and that as long as the two colors are divided in that
proportion in the country, the devil raised up in Mr. Davis's prophetic
visions could never amount to much of a devil practically. There was
nothing about one negro that ten white men need to fear. The speech met
with a flattering reception by the Senate.

Senator Nye and Stewart have both just introduced bills of great
importance to Nevada. Nye's is declaratory of the purpose of the Nevada
town site law passed by Congress early in 1867. Secretary Browning,
although aware that that law was one which had been greatly desired by
the citizens of Virginia, at least, did not feel at liberty to execute
it while the law of 1864 remained unrepealed and must in some cases
interfere with its operation. If passed, Governor Nye's bill will
straighten the matter out.

Senator Stewart's bill gives Nevada the privilege of locating the public
lands according to her wherever she pleases--on the sections along the
railroad that alternate with those belonging to the railroad company if
she chooses. It gives her the privilege of locating the lands donated to
the Public Building Fund, and issuing scrip upon them at once. It also
makes the salt springs and mines of Nevada the property of the State. If
the bill should pass in its present shape it would bring some $50,000 or
$60,000 into the State Treasury.


Are approaching. Congress will adjourn on Friday for a couple of weeks.
Washington will be deserted the next day. I shall help desert it. I
suppose, of course, I shall stay in New York till the national wisdom
congregates again. If I hear anything while I am gone I will report it
to you.


Territorial Enterprise, January 11, 1868




WASHINGTON, December 20, 1867


Colonel Ely Parker, Chief of the Six Nations, and staff officer to
General Grant, was to have been married last Tuesday morning to Miss
Sacket, an accomplished girl of 17, highly connected, and worthy of the
best man in the country. General Grant was to have given away the bride,
and the wedding ceremony was to have taken place in great state at the
Church of the Epiphany, whose parlor has a monopoly of all the marriages
that pay. Truly it has been said, "Ye know not when the bridegroom
cometh"--more particularly when the bridegroom don't come at all. And he
didn't come in this instance--or, as General Grant gravely expressed
it, he failed to qualify. The five foolish virgins that had oil in their
lamps were no better off than the two hundred and fifty foolish cues
that hadn't, for lamps, howsoever well they may be supplied with oil,
cannot discover a bridegroom that is not present but on the contrary is
far away with a conspiring and malignant Indian. The wedding party went
swearing and sorrowing home, wondering what could have become of the
Grand Sachem of the Six Nations?--what could keep him away at such a
time?--what he could possibly mean by "such conduct as these." They
wondered for full twenty-four hours, and then the defendant came to
light--the lost bridegroom was found--the Prodigal Son rose up and
returned to his own precinct.

He explained his absence. He said that after he had borrowed a shirt--I
should say a scarf--from General Grant on Saturday evening, he saw some
friends, and afterwards, an hour or two later, went off to take a walk
alone. An Indian of his confederation met him and said he had important
things to say to him; walked with him to a convenient room, gave him
a glass of wine and opened the conversation. But almost immediately
Colonel Parker felt strangely, and lay down on the bed. He remembered
nothing that occurred after that, save that he awoke out of a deep
sleep, apparently in the middle of a dark night--he does not know which
night it was--and by his bedside, never flitting, still was sitting,
still was sitting, that ghastly, grim and ancient Indian from the
night's Plutonian shore--only he, and nothing more. Quoth the Indian,
Nevermore. Then this ebon bird beguiling the Colonel's sad soul into
smiling, by the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it bore,
"Bird or fiend," he cried, upstarting, (wrathful to his heart's hot
core). "What's the time of night, I wonder?--tell me that thou son of
thunder, from the night's Plutonian shore. How long have I in dreams
been soaring?--how long been wheezing, gagging, snoring?--how long in
savage nightmares roaring, since I lay down before?" Quoth the buck,

"An hour or more. You've been sick and may be sicker, because of late
you've stopped your liquor, a thing you've never done before; here's
some stuff the doctor sent ye--of your folly quick repent ye--take it,
Chief, and seek nepenthe--rememb'ring grief no more."

"Bird," the Colonel cried, upstarting. "Bird or fiend," he cried,
upstarting. "Bird or fiend!" as if his soul in that one phrase he did
outpour: "Pass that stuff the Doctor sent me--move the frame thy God
hath lent thee--take thy form from off my door. Take thy beak from
out my jug--go on take thy bust outside my door." Quoth the Choctaw,

Colonel Parker took the medicine, and immediately the fatal drowsiness
came upon him again. He fell asleep, and never woke again till Wednesday
morning--a day after General Grant assembled himself at the church to
assist at his nuptials. It may be all very funny, lightly considered,
but seriously regarded it is sad enough. It has brought into unpleasant
newspaper notoriety a soldier who has fought bravely and faithfully
throughout the long war, and was honored with the confidence and esteem
of the first General of our day; and it has also given the same unhappy
notoriety to a modest, retiring young girl, and has caused her the
extremest suffering. The bridegroom's is the easiest case, for whether
he be blameless or not, he is a man and a soldier, and can bear untoward
fortune and the gossip of idle tongues with soldierly fortitude.

Colonel Parker's friends are well satisfied that his community of
Indians are at the bottom of the whole affair; that they are jealous of
foreign marriage complications; that they wish him to wed with a woman
of his own race, and that they conspired to stave off his marriage
with the white girl and break off the match if possible. The Indian who
drugged him was gone when he awoke the last time, and has not been seen
since. General Grant has taken the matter into his own hands and will
sift the mystery to the bottom. If it comes out straight, Colonel Parker
will fare well; if it does not, it will be farewell to Colonel Parker.

A Voluminous Telegram.

A telegram for the Government, consisting of 6,480 words, was received
here to-night from the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce. It is the
full report of that body in favor of and urging the ratification of the
Sandwich Islands treaty. I think its strongest argument is, that with
such a treaty in force, the Government would have a fair pretext for
resisting by military power, the occupation of the Islands by England
or France. If we can't get the property, it is at least wise to see that
they don't. We certainly cannot get it. The King will not sell; we shall
not seize it of course. Its free use is indispensable to our Pacific
commerce. Hence we should take care that that free use shall be secured
to us. The reciprocity treaty blocks the game on all obstacles to this.
Nothing else can.

I know of no objection to the treaty except that it will decrease our
national revenue by $150,000 a year--but inasmuch as the Pacific coast
has but to pay that, in the form of increased prices charged for sugar
to cover the duties, perhaps the Government had better tax the coast
people to that amount on something else and secure to itself the
valuable freedom of the islands through the reciprocity treaty.

Still, it would be just like these Solons here to forget all judgment in
the desire to save that trifle of revenue. They give $100,000,000 to
the Pacific Railroad, and $500,000 a year to the China mail, and now it
would be exceedingly like them to forget the Sandwich Islands are just
as much a necessary part of the grand highway they are creating between
New York and China as Damascus is a necessary part of the legitimate
route from a sinful world to the devil. It would be like them. It would
so accord with their policy of saving at the spigot while they lose at
the bung.

Yesterday, the Senate shut off the stationery supplies of its members!
That was the meanest thing, the smallest business, the cheapest fraud I
ever heard of. I know nothing of it. I wrote an order for four reams of
fancy foolscap and got a blind lunatic to sign Charles Sumner's name
to it (no man can counterfeit the genuine signature unless there is
something awful the matter with him), and went up to the Senate and
presented it. They said it would not do. I asked if they meant to
insinuate anything against the soundness of the signature. They said
no; they could see by the general horribleness of it that some member of
Congress wrote it, but that was not the idea--and then they told me
of that poor little swindle of a "retrenchment." It is nothing but
a blind--nothing but a miserable little ten thousand dollar blind to
deceive the people with. Those parties are generating something--they
are sitting--silent--spreading themselves--hatching. Under cover of that
little dab of retrenchment which they have thrown into the people's eyes
they are getting ready to steal about four hundred millions of dollars,
and then you will hear them cackle. I suppose I shall have to go back to
writing letters on old blotting paper again shortly.

The more I think of it the more indignant I become. Here some time ago
we bought an iceberg for $7,000,000 and lately we bought a volcano and
an infernal nest of earthquakes for $17,000,000, and now we are shutting
off a dray-load of stationery and six bits worth of sugar revenues to
get even again. Bother such "retrenchment!"

California Senator.

The news arrived to-day by telegraph that the California Legislature has
elected Eugene Casserly to be United States Senator to succeed Hon. John
Conness. He will succeed one of the pleasantest men, socially, and one
of the best hearted that exists; and by the same token a man that has
worked hard for the coast, done his duty faithfully, and accomplished
all that any man could have done. Do you know what particular stripe of
Democracy Mr. Casserly is variegated with? Had I better support him with
the Administration, or had I better hoist out my paint and get ready to
go on the warpath? But perhaps you fail to catch my drift. What I mean
is, is his Democracy of the poetical stripe, as set forth in bombastic
platforms, or is it of the practical stripe that looks to the most goods
to the greatest number? In plain English, how is Casserly on stationery?
For behold, even as a man is on stationery, so shall he be concerning
the greater things of the covenant. Would it be agreeable to Casserly
for me to collect his mileage for him, do you think?

For President.

Associate Justice Field of the Supreme Bench is widely talked of,
latterly, as the Democratic candidate for President of the United
States--an able man, a just one, and one whose judicial and political
garments are clean--a man well fitted for the place. No man can tell
what an hour may bring forth--especially if the politicians have leased
that hour--but just at the present moment the Presidential contest bids
far to take a particularly "sporting" shape--for verily is there not
a "field" on the one side and a "chase" on the other? Now, therefore,
where is the fox that shall fly the Chase, cross the Field in safety,
and gain the cover of the White House?


Congress adjourned yesterday. I don't know whether they have done
anything or not. I don't think they have. However, let us not
forget that they have "retrenched." They have passed the stationery
resolution--they have eased up some on one thousand millions of
debt--they have smitten the Goliath of gold with a pebble--they have
saved the country. God will bless them. Let the new David bring the head
of the monster to the foot of the throne, and go after more. I tremble
to think they may abolish the franking privilege next.

The Ark has rested on Ararat. The most of the animals have gone away to
New York and elsewhere. But I believe the Pacific delegation propose to
remain here during the vacation and get ready for business--for stirring
times are at hand.


Territorial Enterprise, January 30, 1868



WASHINGTON, January 10, 1868


That is the polite term now. What are we coming to when language like
that is freely launched at the great officers of the Government? Not in
the street alone, and in private conversation, but, in a barely modified
form, in the Senate Chamber of the United States. They almost speak in
that way of the Secretary of the Treasury. The country seems to have
become satisfied that his department is rotten with swindling and
rascality, that at last even the Senate has partly awakened to the
importance of doing something or saying something. It is a slow body,
and timid. Andrew can scare it with a growl. All those Senators believe,
and have believed for weeks, that through the improper and unlawful
conduct of the Treasury officers, the Government has been swindled out
of $200,000,000 a year, through whisky and cotton frauds, but they
dared not say anything, until their silence at last began to breed the
impression among the people that Congress was in the "ring" too, along
with the Treasury! That has stirred them up a little and two or three
Senators have lately made a sort of show of wanting to know something
about these frauds. One charge against Mr. McCullouch is peculiar. Laws
were passed in 1862, '63, and '64, providing for the sale of cotton and
other confiscated property seized during the war, and establishing a
Court of Claims for the examination of cases where it might be alleged
that some of these seizures were unjust--a Court with power to restore
such property as might be proven to have been taken by mistake from
staunch Union men, etc. Under these laws sales amounting to $36,000,000
net were made. It is alleged now that $10,000,000 of this sum has been
restored to parties claiming to have been Union men, and restored,
too, on the individual responsibility of the Secretary of the Treasury,
without any adjudication whatever by the proper tribunal, the Court
of Claims. To prove this true, would be to prove a curious thing
surely--that the Secretary, a mere citizen, like anybody else, has the
presumption to put himself above the supreme of the land! He coolly
overrides that law and serenely plans and executes as if there were no
such law in existence! A feeble effort was made in the Senate, three
weeks ago, to inquire into this matter, but many of the members
hesitated to meddle with it, and Mr. Fessenden, with persistent
solicitude, warred against the movement day after day. He argued that
it was not worthwhile to trouble the Court of Claims with its own
legitimate business, when the Secretary of the Treasury had all
the necessary information in his possession and could transact it
himself--albeit there was no law authorizing him to so transact it! Ours
is a funny Government in some respects.

A dark mystery still hangs over that $200,000,000 per annum business.
Also the Secretary's continual over-estimates of expenses and vast
under-estimates of receipts, which have had the effect of inducing
Congress to increase the burden of taxation enormously to meet the
imaginary demands of his Department, have exasperated the people
exceedingly. The Secretary's "contraction" system, at the time when the
industrial interests of the country are not able to bear the increased
pressure it entails, is regarded with high disfavor by all engaged in
commerce and manufactures. Mr. Stewart, of Nevada, went into this war
against the Secretary of the Treasury, yesterday, with more vim and
spirit than any other Senator has yet ventured upon, and his speech is
much commented upon in political circles, and applauded. In the course
of it he read a letter from a Detroit manufacturer, which was ably
written and bitingly statistical--a letter which showed by plain
figures that a large amount of taxation now imposed upon our industrial
interests could be easily removed and that its continuance is not
warranted in any way by the necessities of the Treasury Department. The
letter also says that a charge of falsification (in the matter of absurd
and injurious estimates) could unquestionably be maintained against the
Secretary; and further, that "in any other country, if the head of the
Treasury should be so outrageously incorrect, he would be compelled by
a deceived people to resign." Stewart's speech was upon the bill to
suspend further reductions of the currency, a bill which is considered
to be of the nature of a vote of censure and want of confidence in the
Secretary of the Treasury. During the debate Senator Nye also made a few
remarks, and as they give the effect of the Secretary's operations in a
nutshell, I copy them:

I have a vague recollection of a law being passed authorizing the
Secretary of the Treasury, as the compound interest notes became due,
to issue three per cent. certificates, or securities of some kind, to
supply the deficiency thus created. I was told in New York the other day
that during the two months preceding the election there were $53,000,000
of compound interest notes retired, together with $8,000,000 of United
States notes, making $61,000,000, and at the same time a circular was
issued to the banks to keep good their reserve. The banks that had been
holding those $53,000,000 had to get in legal tenders to supply their
places. The effect of this was to contract the currency some $61,000,000
at once, which raised the price of money in New York from five to eight
per cent., and in Chicago to as much as sixteen percent., and prevented
the obtainment of the means for bringing forward the vast products of
the West. That is what I was told.

Before they get through with this bill of censure it is likely that
Congress will rouse up and shake off its sleepiness and make a row
that will discover to the world whether there is any rascality in the
Treasury Department or not, and if so, about how much.

The Worrell Sisters

Were still playing at the New York Theatre in New York when I was there
spending the holidays the other day. I did not see them, but I heard the
young men talk about them--the young men seem as if they are not going
to get over the fascination those girls have inspired them with. Another
"Worrell Brigade" is being found. If gossip is in order, I will mention
that Sophy was to sail for Havana with her mother and a Mr. Lovell,
about 10 days ago. Mr. Lovell is a bachelor, 45 and rich--but
consumption has its grip upon him, and it is believed he cannot recover.
His journey to Havana was undertaken for his health. He thinks the world
of Sophy, and would like to marry her, but she will not consent, of
course. Lovell has been kind to the family, however, and of service to
them in every way that he could, and their appreciation of these has
moved them to care for and assist him to their utmost upon this his
last journey. It is said he has no heirs, and insists upon leaving his
fortune to Sophy.

Old Curry

Is here--old Abe Curry. And he is gotten up "regardless." He is the
observed of all observers. I think Curry is the best dressed man in
Washington. He has a plug hat with a bell crown to it--it is of the
latest Paris style, and has a rim that is curled up at the sides. It is
the shiest hat in Washington. And he wears black broadcloth pants, with
straps to them, while Marseilles vest, and a blue claw-hammer coat with
a double row of brass buttons on it, like a Major General. His cravat
is perfectly stunning; it looks like it might have come off the end of a
rainbow. His moustache is turning out handsomely, and he swings a rattan
stick and wears lemon-colored kid gloves. He also has a superb set of
false teeth, but he has to carry them in his pocket most of the time,
because he can't swear good when he has them in. He goes browsing around
the President's and the departments trying to talk French--because he
is playing himself for a foreign Duke, you know. N.B.--I may have
exaggerated my old friend's costume and performances a little, but then
this is the man that detained my baggage in Carson once and gave me that
infamous account of the Hopkins massacre, and I can never, never forgive
him for it. He says he is here to get seeds from the Patent Office for
Tredway and Jim Sturtevant. A likely story. He wants to get another
appropriation to put another layer of stone on that Mint, I guess. I
expect I had better find out what Curry is about and keep an eye on
him--he will be wanting to run this Government next.

Clagett has been here during the past few days, on Montana and Nevada
business, visiting relatives, etc.

The Town-Site Bill

In the Senate on Thursday, Mr. Stewart's bill concerning town-sites
in Nevada, which has for its object to afford a relief to Virginia and
other Nevada towns which Secretary Browning said he could not afford
himself the way the old law stood (I have spoken of this bill in a
former letter), was taken up, and so amended as to make the operation
of the law general upon all the lands of the Union, and in this shape
it was ordered to be engrossed and filed for a third reading. There is
little question that it will become a law.


P.S. I lectured here last night.

Territorial Enterprise, February 18, 1868



WASHINGTON, January 11, 1868.


They are opened, and awful is the smell thereof! Millions of politicians
have suddenly begun to prate, with unprecedented energy, even for their
tribe, and they foul all the air with their corrupt and suffocating
breath. It is all about reconstruction. The truth is, that the more
Congress reconstructs, the more the South goes to pieces. But Congress
is in for it, now, and goes bravely on, hoping at last to get the
reconstruction bull where they can hold him. Every morning, after
breakfast, Congress passes a brand-new Reconstruction Act; after
luncheon they amend it and put some Constitution in it; when it is time
to go to dinner, they repeal it, and get ready to start fresh in the
morning. If they keep on stacking up talent on reconstruction as they
have been doing, they will run out of material before they get their
great mission accomplished. You see, they started in to build a good,
substantial reconstruction house, but there were some sandy places under
it which did not look well. They thought maybe they might not be as
risky as they looked, however, and concluded to chance them. But it was
not a good idea. The house was hardly built, before one corner began to
sink a little, and they had to jackscrew it up and put in an amendment
prop. Then another corner began to sink, and they had to put in a
similar prop there. Next the chimney began to lean, and they had to prop
that mighty quick with a powerful brace; right away the kitchen began
to cave in and the gable end to bulge out, and immediately some more
jackscrews and braces had to be called into use. It is a nice new house,
but some part of it lets down every day, and has to be fixed--till at
last we have the curious spectacle of a mansion bright with new paint
and dazzling with gilding, looking bleary and bloated, limber and
leaning and bulging in all directions, and with unpainted and unsightly
spars and braces canted against it and straddling about every which
way--an allegorical, elegant gentleman of the first water and most
fashionable attire, drunk as a piper, subjugated, demoralized and gone
in generally, reeling home on crutches enough for six! Such is the new
house, and such the efforts made to save it. And of course it never
rains but it pours--in the midst of all this vexation, along comes the
Grand Jury, otherwise the Supreme Court, to examine it, and the owners
and builders in fancy already hear the disastrous fiat: "Gentlemen, she
won't do; she will have to come down; there is too much sand and not
enough Constitution under her!"

I am not writing a political article; I am not trying to write a
palatable article; I am merely writing the truth--simply photographing a
straight-out fact. Thaddeus Stevens and many other prominent Republicans
have said all along that the Reconstruction Acts were "outside the
Constitution;" Congress itself has said it. Yet they still go on trying
to patch up that old house, with that fatal defect in it, instead of
wisely pulling it down and doing all over again and doing it right. The
defect looked small at first, and Congress seems to have thought that it
could not amount to a great deal--and yet, patch and repair and improve
as they will, that little defect invariably obtrudes itself again and
disarranges everything. It reminds me of a circumstance. That great
Claflin house in New York, sold forty millions of dollars worth of goods
in the year 1866. I visited their immense establishment in January '67,
to see its wonders, and found the head bookkeeper in a sweat. I asked
what the matter was. He said that for two terrible days he and his 48
sub-bookkeepers had been turning themselves gray with anxiety chasing a
ten cent piece through a cart load of ledgers--there was a discrepancy
of ten cents in the cash account for the year--the awful cash account
wouldn't balance! I just said, indignantly, "Well that is about the
smallest piece of business I ever heard of! Here, I'll give you ten
cents myself. You and Claflin go to bed and get some rest!"

But he smiled a green, despairing, ghastly smile, and shook his head. He
said that wasn't the idea. It wasn't the ten cents they cared for, but
the terrible truth that that miserable trifle might stand for millions
of dollars? Until that defect was hunted out and rectified, they
couldn't tell whether they had lost millions or made them. "The cash
books," he said, "must balance!"

It is just the idea with reconstruction. There is a trifling discrepancy
somewhere, and nothing is safe about the building till it shall be
rooted out. There is ten cents worth of Constitution lacking in it
somewhere, and there will be no security, no salvation for it till the
thing is rectified. There is no use trying to tinker it up--the builders
must go straight through the edifice, and never rest till its accounts
balance with the cashbook of the Constitution!

I wrote that speech for a Democratic member of Congress, but he couldn't
pay me anything but whisky, and so we couldn't trade. I said I would
rather confer it on a good Republican newspaper as a fair and honest
exhibit of the Democratic side of the most exciting question before the
nation, to the end that Republicans might have a chance to read both
sides and thereby better inform themselves.

But Congress is worried. A decision rendered by the Supreme Court,
rendered some time ago, seemed plainly to indicate that five of the
Judges considered the Reconstruction Acts unconstitutional against three
who believed the opposite. The famous McCardle case threatens to bring
the constitutionality of those Acts to a test before the Court right
away, and Congress to-day proposes to do what it can to circumvent the
disaffected five, by passing a bill ordaining that the concurrence of
six of the Judges shall be necessary to constitute a decision in all
cases involving constitutional questions. But unhappily Congress did
not make the Supreme Court, and doubtless it will transpire that it has
about as much jurisdiction over its affairs as it has over the weather.
The Court makes its own rules, and is entirely independent of Congress.
Its custom is to decide by a majority vote, and if it chooses, will no
doubt continue to do so. If McCardle gains his case, negro suffrage
and the Reconstruction Acts will be dissipated into thin air for the
present. No wonder Congress is troubled. It fears that if it can't fix
things so as to enable three Judges to out vote five, it will have to go
to work and build that Reconstruction House all over again, from cellar
to roof. Isn't it a splendid sensation? The principal Republican papers
are growling savagely at Congress for getting itself into this scrape by
its innocent stupidity.

Republicans, both in and outside claim that though the Reconstruction
Acts and the proposed bill to prescribe rules for the Judges are a
little unconstitutional, they are necessities--the state of the country
demands them; that if the rebels were admitted to power they would hang
Union men upon any and every pretext, or upon none at all; that to admit
them to power, unreconstructed and unrestrained, would be to acknowledge
that the war for the Union was an iniquity, a crime. General Sheridan
says he is interested in this business; if the war was wrong, he thinks
he is a particularly bad murderer. I suppose he had a chance to be; he
was in eighty-four battles, and had a hand in a good deal of killing. He
says if he was in the right, he would like it if Congress would go ahead
and so decide it; if he was in the wrong, and was only a murderer, he
would like to know that, also. He is satisfied of one thing--that he
cannot live under rebel rule; and thinks, from at least a military
point of view, that the rebel conquered have no right to dictate to the
victors--no right to say under what terms they will come in. Congressmen
say that everything that stands in the way must go to the wall--if the
Supreme Court obstructs the regeneration of rebeldom, it must go, too.
This would be good enough reasoning, possibly, but for one thing: the
President will veto the bill making rules for the Judges, and it can
hardly be passed over his veto. And even if it were, the Court would
simply annul it, and then, no doubt, go on and annul the Reconstruction
Acts by the liberation of McCardle. A telegraphic report to-day says
that General Meade has suspended the Governor and Treasurer of Georgia
from office, and this has created great rejoicing among Republicans
here. So the political cauldron boils. Let her boil.

It is believed that Secretary Stanton will be reinstated in the War
Office within a few days, whether the President likes it or not.
Congress is on its mettle now--Stanton, the President, Treasury frauds,
reconstruction--it has a good deal of business on its hands, but it is
fighting furiously at last. Even Wendell Phillips ought to be satisfied
now. How the cauldron does boil. Let her boil.


It is the fashion, now, to write speeches. Congressman Brooks said at
the Press Banquet, last night, that the day of eloquence is over in
America--killed by newspapers, telegraphs, and phonographers. No man has
a chance to carefully write out a speech for publication, now, after it
has been delivered. It is forever too late--the short-handers have got
it, the telegraph has flashed it to the ends of the earth, the daily
press has petrified it into print with all its imperfections before the
words were cold upon his lips. He said that Webster and Clay could not
be orators, now--their crude extemporaneous efforts would appall them in
print, and they would fall into the safer new fashion, and write cold,
glittering, chastely worded sentences that could warm no listener into
enthusiasm when he heard them.

Mr. Stewart has written, and written carefully, an elaborate speech upon
the mining interests of the Pacific coast. It is by far the best and the
ablest effort of the kind that ever has seen the light in this region.
If he never does anything else to be proud of while he lives, this ought
to be sufficient to satisfy him. It ought to be sufficient to kill him,
too. For I never knew a man to do his constituents a great service, or
do his whole duty by them honestly and well, that they didn't put him
on the shelf and send some ass to represent them that was of no use
whatever under God Almighty's Heaven but to get up and "blat" about
niggers and politics and American flags and other bosh that he didn't
know any more about than a bull knows about mathematics. California
has shelved Conness, and served him right. He worked too hard for her
interests--he was too faithful to his trust--he was too good and too
tireless a servant.

Mr. Stewart is the only man that ever stood in either house of Congress
that knows all about mines and mining--knows it from A to Zed--knows it
in all its needs, in all its possibilities, in all its details. He
knows what laws are wanted to nurture, and protect, and endow it with
prosperity, and he knows how to frame them. He sees into his subject
with a surer and a clearer vision than any man on this coast--it would
be safe to say, or upon yours either. I was satisfied of this before. I
know it now, after reading his speech. But it will do this for him--it
will show his constituents that they have sent a man here who knows his
business to a fraction, and is exactly the man they need here to keep
Congress from eternally impoverishing them by passing absurd laws to
cripple mining and disgust every man engaged in it, and then you will
send some brainless idiot here--some quacking numskull--some bladder of
wind that some browsing elephant, in the inscrutable providence of
God, ought to step on and burst. That is what you will do. If I were in
Nevada next fall I wouldn't want anything better than to take stump
for Stewart and "norate" it to you. Can a man put a bill through the
Congress like Stewart's that freed your mines from Government ownership
and opened the markets of the world for their sale--dare a man to do
so priceless a service as that for his people and ever hope to see the
United States again? Not while republics are ungrateful, I reckon, and
a clattering tongue with a piece of an idiot hung to it can be found in
his place. You are hearing me toot my horn!


Territorial Enterprise, February 19, 1868




NEW YORK, January 20

I have run up here every now and then to get rid of the dullness of
Washington; but I cannot tarry long, for I have to clear out again
to keep from being crazed by the terrible activity of New York. They
complain that New York is excessively dull, now, and so it must
be, compared to the bewildering energy it displays in its busiest
seasons--but even as it is now it is able to make provincial brains
grow dizzy with its noise, and bustle, and excitement. It is a wonderful
city. Two persons died last night of hunger, cold and exposure; they
were people who could get nothing to do, and could not make a living
begging. The bodies were displayed at the Morgue to-day, and among the
idle spectators was a man who has nothing in life to accomplish but the
spending of four hundred thousand dollars a year. I was in a tenement
house yesterday which contained two hundred persons, all crowded
together in little cramped chambers, where was lack of everything but
dirt and rags; there were remnants of hats for window-panes; doors hung
by one hinge; fragments of quilts and blankets, bestowed in corners, did
duty as beds; there were a few battered pots and pans, but nothing to
cook in them, and no fire to do it with, either; there was occasionally
a broken chair and part of a table, but as a general thing these rooms
were not so sumptuously furnished; there were small ridges of snow on
some of the floors--it had blown in through cracks and broken windows;
the human occupants were cadaverous, and pale, hollow-eyed and savage
with hunger, or dumb with a misery that was next of kin to despair. One
woman with five children (it is proper to call her a woman, I suppose,
though she would have averaged very well as rags, all through), said she
washed for a living formerly, but she got sick and lost her custom; then
she peddled apples and oranges until a general financial crisis that
prostrated all commerce and broke up many a staunch old firm reduced
her to peanuts; but trouble still followed her; an investment of four
dollars at the very top of the market, followed immediately by an
unusual business depression, compelled a sacrifice of the whole venture
and she went to protest. She retired from commerce, a bankrupt. She
struggled on, doing what she could to make a livelihood by begging, but
she was very nearly discouraged. For 24 hours she had not eaten. She
swore to it. One of the philanthropists in our party advanced funds
enough to set her up in business again.

There was want and suffering all about us. There was a man there--a poor
decrepit starveling of 60--who had been the clown in a circus in
his palmy days--had been royally tricked out in paint, and brilliant
spangles, and ribbons and gold lace, instead of the gunny sack he wore
about his shoulders now and the shredded latticework of rags that hung
about his legs. He had been the admiration of the school-boys; had been
the man of all men they envied most and most longed to be like. But
nobody envied him now; nobody admired him; the day of his greatness was
over. He mentioned it with feeling, and sighed when he spoke of it. He
told how the audience used to applaud when he capered into the ring
and made his bow; he said he was the "star" of the troupe, and his
name alone on the bills was a sufficient guarantee for a full house. He
compared himself with the "celebrated" clowns, Messrs. So-and-So, whom
we had not heard of before, and pointed out wherein he had been superior
to them. Then he piped out some execrable jokes in the old familiar
clownish way (I was not aware before that they were so old), and told
how boisterous the laughter and applause used to be. The fact is he had
forgotten for the moment that he was a mendicant, and imagined himself
a clown again, in the zenith of his glory. He even got so carried away
with his happy reminiscences as to attempt his favorite comic song for
us, but his poor reedy falsetto broke down and his splendid day-dream
vanished. He was an unspangled mendicant again. He told how he came down
gradually but surely from the dizzy height of his prosperity to be a
magic-lantern exhibitor, then a door-keeper, then a Roman soldier in
a theatre, then a mere "supe," afterwards a vendor of cheap soap and
ballads, and finally a rag-picker and a searcher after old bones and
broken bottles. He was hungry, but he was not thinking of that; he was
cold, but he was not thinking of that, either; his friends were all
gone, years ago, and it was plain that he had no home--but none of these
things stood first in his mind. All he wanted was to shine once more
in the ring, in glittering spangles, and get off some more of those
infernal jokes, and hear the blessed music of applause, and then die.
But we could not give him an engagement, as we had no circus, and so we
left him to his want, his rags and his dreams.

There was a girl in that house, about fourteen years old, who supported
her father and mother and two young sisters by her work. She sold
newspapers about the streets in the daytime, and played the tambourine
and collected the pennies for an organ grinder at night. She was
prosperous, and full of ambition. She reveled in her gorgeous dreams,
and dared to look forward to a day when she should rise to the dignity
of peanuts, and have a regular stand on the corner. This girl had a good
deal of human nature about her. Straightened as her circumstances were,
she kept a Sunday dress--a dress that must have cost as much as three or
four dollars, years ago, when it was new. She took it down from a nail
and showed it to us. She had had a waterfall once, she said, but the
rats got it. There was considerable human nature in some of those small
children, too. They got out some rusty rag dolls--wretched affairs
with arms pulled out, and features defaced, and bran oozing from their
legs--they got these melancholy monstrosities out and flourished them
about where we could admire them, but pretending all the while that they
had no such end in view, and were even unconscious that those dolls were
in any respect proper objects of admiration. I have seen other children
go through the same fraudulent performance with costlier playthings,
pretending all the while that they were not courting notice and

Ah, the want and suffering that we saw yesterday! We passed from the
tenement house to a mansion up town where one of our party had a call to
make, and there we saw human misery in its saddest form. Here was a poor
devil living in a vast brownstone front, whose income had suddenly come
toppling down from six thousand a month to four. He was consequently in
deep distress, and all that he said was touched with melancholy. Trouble
never comes singlehanded. One of his finest horses had gone lame, and
his most precious dog was very sick and like to die. His champagne and
his sherry did not suit his taste, and his tailor was so slow with his
work as to drive him to the verge of distraction sometimes. This heart
bowed down by weight of woe, wrought upon my sympathies as suffering
never did before. And yet no man can fully appreciate misery like
his until he has tried it. Unhappily, I had never tried it, and I
was obliged to compassionate him only in a degree far inferior to the
magnitude of his grief. The ex-clown suffered, but I could not see that
he suffered as much as this man.

But this distressing subject suggests a fact. In this city, with its
scores of millionaires, there are to-day a hundred thousand men out of
employment. It is an item of threatening portent. Many apprehend bread
riots, and certainly there is serious danger that they may occur.
If this army of men had a leader, New York would be in an unenviable
situation. It has been proposed in the Legislature to appropriate
$500,000 to the relief of New York poor, but of course the thing is
cried down by everybody--the money would never get further than the
pockets of a gang of thieving politicians. They would represent the
"poor" to the best of their ability, and there the State's charity would

New York is always bustling and lively, but there are degrees in even
its liveliness. In that net-work of great business streets that occupies
the section between Broadway and the Brooklyn ferries, and the City Hall
and Castle Garden, one may cross and recross the thoroughfares, now,
with hardly a fear of being run over, and may make a reasonable progress
along pavement still crowded, but not crammed. But a year ago it was so
different. To attempt to cross one of those streets then, with its long
array of massed and struggling vehicles, was to take your life in your
own hands; and to get anywhere on foot along the sidewalks necessitated
an exasperating elbow-fight for the whole distance you wished to go.
They used to talk of dull times then. What do they think of it now?


Territorial Enterprise, February 27, 1868



WASHINGTON, January 30, 1868

More Westonism.

Sergeant Gilbert H. Bates of Wisconsin is the last candidate for
pedestrian notoriety. He has made a bet that he will walk, alone,
unarmed, without a cent in his pocket, and bearing aloft the American
flag, through the late Southern Confederacy, from Vicksburg to
Washington. He is already on his way, and the telegraph is noting his
progress. The Mayor and a large portion of the population of Vicksburg
ushered him out of that city with a grand demonstration. He proposes to
sell photographs of himself at 25 cents apiece, all along his route, and
convert the proceeds into a fund to be devoted to the aid and comfort of
widows and orphans of soldiers who fought in the late war, irrespective
of flag or politics. And then, I suppose, when he gets a good round sum
together, for the widows and orphans, he will hang up his flag and go
and have a champagne blow-out.

I don't believe in people who collect money for benevolent purposes and
don't charge for it. I don't have full confidence in people who walk
a thousand miles for the benefit of widows and orphans and don't get a
cent for it. I question the uprightness of people who peddle their own
photographs, anyhow, whether they carry flags or not. In my opinion a
man might as well start his name with an initial and spell his middle
name out and hope to be virtuous.

But this fellow will get more black eyes, down there among those
unconstructed rebels than he can ever carry along with him without
breaking his back. I expect to see him coming into Washington some day
on one leg and with one eye out and an arm gone. He won't amount to more
than an interesting relic by the time he gets here and then he will have
to hire out for a sign for the Anatomical Museum. Those fellows down
there have no sentiment in them. They won't buy his picture. They will
be more likely to take his scalp.

Now the next ass that turns up will be wanting to carry a Confederate
flag through the North, and wouldn't he have a cheerful time of it? What
a pity it is that that insufferable fool, George Francis Train, did not
think of that. He would have tried it, in a minute, and got hanged, and
it would have been a blessing to the country. It would have transferred
that tiresome gab of his to the other world, and from that time forward
there never would have been any peace in hell any more. When the English
found what a poor, clattering frog they had flattered with imprisonment,
they were ashamed of themselves, and turned him loose. And ever
since then he has been squandering his substance in sending
bombastic telegrams over here about his suing the British crown for
[pounds]500,000 (money enough to buy a sane man with); and about his
protesting officially against this, that and the other thing; and about
"Derby" threatening boastfully, but "trembling" (at such a sputtering
bladder of gas as Train!); and about his going to "stump Ireland."

Was there ever such a world of egotism stuffed into one carcass before?
Surely there is no room left in him for bowels. Do you know that that
idiot is aspiring to the Presidency of the United States? He honestly
is. He said in a farewell speech on shipboard, as he left New York--a
speech slobbering adulation and nauseating buncombe over half a dozen
Irishmen out of business, that in due time he would be the People's
President. However, the same God that made George Francis Train made
also the mosquitoes and the rats, and in His infinite wisdom He knows
what He did it for. Human beings don't, though. Train established a
newspaper in New York (the Revolution) to keep his notoriety alive while
he wagged his ears in Europe. Last week, in New York, I saw six young
girls walking up Broadway in single file, arrayed in showy uniform
dresses of red merino, with white bodies, and on their heads they wore
blue caps--red, white and blue, do you observe?--and each girl had a
belt about her waist with "Revolution" painted on it, and had also a
bundle of Revolution newspapers under her arm. Isn't that absurdity just
like Train? I suppose that paper will advocate Female Suffrage,
Free Love, Miscegenation, Burglary, Arson, Spiritualism, Southern
Superiority, and general compounding with sin on earth and repudiation
of damnation hereafter. When they speak contemptuously of worthless,
fussy people in England they call them baggage. They have applied this
happy epithet to Train. So our blowing, shrieking, ranting lightning
express has degenerated into a poor, homely inconsequential
baggage-Train after all.

Judge McCorkle.

They report that this homely old friend of mine--this ancient denizen
of California and Nevada--the wrinkled, aged, knock-kneed, ringboned
and spavined old war-horse of the Plains is to be married shortly to a
handsome young Ohio widow worth Three Hundred Thousand Dollars. Well.
What is the world coming to, anyhow? If any man had told me a week ago
that any woman in her right mind and under 70 would be willing to marry
that old fossil!--that old tunnel--that old dilapidated quartz mill--I
would never, never have believed it. He is a splendid man, you know, but
then he must be as much as 92 or 93 years old. He is one of my nearest
personal friends, but what of that? I would remain a bachelor a century
before I would marry such a rusty, used up old arastra as he is. I have
always considered that I ought to fairly expect to marry about seventeen
thousand dollars, but I think differently now. If McCorkle ranges at
three hundred thousand in the market, I will raise my margin to about a
million and a half.


It is on hand again. Congress has said it is going to boss this
Government, in spite of everything and everybody, and it is keeping
its word. It has held its grip now for more than a month, without ever
flinching. And so it is forcing from the people that respect which pluck
always inspires, whether it be displayed by one man or a multitude. It
has never given up its impeachment scheme, but foiled in one attempt
it straightway essays another. The new bill, just introduced into the
Senate by Mr. Edmunds, of Vermont, proposes to get rid of the obnoxious
President on easy terms. It simply provides that when a civil officer is
arraigned before the Senate on articles of impeachment preferred by
the House, said officer shall be suspended from service pending the
examination of his case. The examination of Mr. Johnson's case, so
arraigned would never take place at all. He would remain harmlessly
suspended until his duly elected successor arrived at the White House
on the 4th of next March. It is specified in the bill that the army, if
necessary, shall enforce such suspension. No one can tell, of course,
what this measure may result in, but it is possible that through it
Congress may yet gain its point and tie the hands of the President.

Harry Worthington

Has been nominated for U. S. District Judge for Nebraska, and henceforth
will cease to decimate the Indians with his short rations. But he
performed good service for his country while he remained in the Indian
feeding department of the Government. He started out to unfit a couple
of tribes for the war-path, and I think he must have done it, for no
man has ever heard of them since. Works like those are bound to receive
their reward at the hands of a grateful nation. He is a Judge, now (or
rather, I trust he soon will be), and can rest upon his Indian laurels,
and grant injunctions and hang people. It is good to be a Judge. The
New York papers say Harry Worthington used to be a U. S. Senator from
California--but I guess that is a mistake, isn't it? But New York papers
don't know everything.

And speaking of Western people, I will mention that C. H. Webb ("Inigo")
arrived here for a short sojourn to-day. He is going to do up fashions
and such matters for Harper's Bazaar and the Tribune, I hear. This town
seems to me to be pretty well stocked with California newspaper men, and
so is New York--and all at work, too, which is flattering, certainly,
considering the number of idle pens there are. I am on the Tribune staff
yet, and also on the regular staff of the New York Herald and likewise
that of the Chicago Republican. I think the boys are all satisfied with
their Eastern positions and with Eastern pay; and I am sure ought to
be. They treat us houseless strangers well in the East. Thomas Nast,
the clever artist of Harper's Weekly is exhibiting a collection of great
caricatures of national subjects in New York and wants me to do the
lecturing for his show. I would, if I hadn't so many irons in the fire.
I would like it right well for a change, but then changes are risky.
I must hunt around for a handsome Pacific coaster to take the
berth--because I suppose it is personal loveliness Nast is after.


Mr. Hooper, delegate from Utah, is to have the seat in the House of
Representatives contested by Mr. McGrorty. The papers in the case cover
the whole ground of the legality of the government of that Territory as
administered by the Mormons. This is said to furnish the first occasion
for bringing the whole question of Mormon laws and authority properly
before Congress. I suppose we may look for a general ventilation, now,
of the happy civil and religious code which permits a man to marry a
whole family, grandmother and all, if it is particularly fancy stock, or
if he can't make up his mind which of the ladies he likes best.

Pardon Todds has been nominated for the post of Indian Agent of Utah.
That is the homeliest of all the homely Puritan names I have stumbled on
yet, except that of famous Praise-God Barebone. How could a man write an
obituary on Pardon Todds, if he died, without making it intensely funny?
That man will never survive his mission. The Indians will put up with
a good deal, but they will never put up with an Agent with a name like
that. Toddy, you are going to get scalped. That is what is in store for


[Related item that Mark Twain wrote for the New York Tribune on GEORGE

The New York Tribune, January 22, 1868


To the Editor of The Tribune.

SIR: If you can, I wish you would give me some information of a man by
the name of George Francis Train. It is for an uncle of mine that I
want it. My uncle has had a pretty hard time of it, and if any man does
deserve sympathy, and if any man would appreciate that sympathy, it is
he. He is in the decline of life, and he wants to be quiet; but you
know he tried Walrussia, and the bears ousted him; and then he tried St.
Thomas, and the earthquakes ousted him; and so he hung up his fiddle, so
to speak, and concluded he would wait and look around awhile, till the
Government bought some more property. And while he was waiting, somebody
recommended him to hunt up this gentleman, Mr. Train. They said Mr.
Train was a slow, quiet sort of a body, and had no isms or curious
notions about him, and that he was going over to the old country to buy
Ireland for those persons they call the Fenians. They said he was very
popular with the English Government, and that if the English Government
would sell to anybody, they would to Mr. Train. They said that if Mr.
Train concluded to take it, my uncle have an excellent chance to buy
into a quiet locality in Cork, or Tipperary, or one of those calm,
religious regions there, by speaking to him early.

So my uncle went after Mr. Train, but he was building a couple of
railroads out West, somewhere, and before my uncle got there he had
finished those railroads and was making Democratic speeches in the East.
It was a considerable disappointment, but my uncle always had a great
idea of doing business with a slow, quiet man, and so he came East.
But he came the last part of the journey in a canal-boat (it being his
nature to prefer quiet and safety to speed), and so he missed that
man again. Mr. Train had got the Democratic party reorganized and all
straight, and was out in the middle of the Rocky Mountains clearing
off a place and driving away the buffaloes, so that he could build a
metropolis there. But my uncle went in an ox wagon, and he missed that
man again. Mr. Train had finished that metropolis and paved it with the
Nicolson pavement, and started a couple of daily newspapers, and was
gone East again with another lady to lecture on female suffrage.

It was a little discouraging, but my relative rested about a week and
started after him again. He caught him this time, because Mr. Train had
sprained his ankle and was obliged to remain quiet until he could get
the leg removed and a reliable patent wooden one put on in its place
that could not sprain. So he mentioned his business to Mr. Train, and he

"You are all right, Sir. Put your trust in me. I'll buy Ireland, and you
shall have as good a chance as any man. I am going to sail right away.
You will hear about me as soon as I touch the Emerald shores. I shall
get out some advertisements and make my presence known. I make no
pretensions, but you will see pretty soon that I shall be heartily
welcomed there and promptly cared for."

Since that time my uncle has not heard of Mr. Train. He has confidence
in him, but he thinks that maybe he is too quiet a man to make much of
a stir, and has not been heard of on that account. But have you heard
anything of Mr. Train? Do you know if he got out any advertisements? And
do you know if they received him heartily there, and more especially if
they took care of him? This last is the main thing with my relative. If
they took care of Mr. Train, it is all he cares for. He has said to me
repeatedly that all that he is afraid of is that he has been neglected
and not taken care of. If he were to hear that Mr. Train is there, in
a strange land, without any place to stay, it would nearly break his
heart. If you could only inform us that Mr. Train is safe, and has been
received hospitably, and has a good tranquil place to board in, suitable
to a quiet man like him, it would be a great comfort to the old man.


Territorial Enterprise, March 1, 1868




WASHINGTON, February 5, 1868


Another man has arrived here who comes to get the berth of Postmaster of
San Francisco. This makes thirty-seven. The new applicant is not posted
in office-seeking; he has not had a ripe experience. He is a good
enough man, and may get the place, but it will cost him more trouble and
vexation than he is promising himself, no doubt. He says he can't see
that there is anything to be done but get the President to appoint and
the Senate to ratify. Certainly that is all, truly enough. It was all
that was to be accomplished by the thirty-six. He says he means to show
the President what the Pacific coast papers say about him, and he means
also to tell him all about how the Post Office has heretofore been
managed and how he would improve that management the moment he got into
office. But he don't say he would swear by Andrew Johnson and labor for
his behest alone--which is much more important. And he don't take into
consideration that the moment he gets the President in his favor the
Senate will be down on him for it, and that if he gains the Senate's
affections first, the President will be down on him. He only proposes
to stay here a week. He says he don't care anything about making an
extended stay in Washington--he only wants to get the appointment, and
look around the great public buildings a little, and then he is off.

They told him a story, yesterday, but I do not know whether he saw the
point of it or not. It was a little story that has been related with
great spirit many thousands of times to office-seekers and claim-hunters
who were only going to tarry a few days in Washington. It was about


It was a long time ago--thirty long years ago--when Gadsby's was the
great hotel. It was snowing. A gentleman in the very prime of life drove
gallantly up to Gadsby's with a spanking coach-and-four. The servants
ran out to put up his horses, but he said no, he was only going to stop
an hour, and was going right on again; he only wished to get a little
claim cashed at one of the Departments. And so he blanketed his horses
and hitched them, and went away. A week after that he was still in
Washington. He sold one of the horses. After a month or two had rolled
by he sold another. He said he did not wish to part with the others,
because he was going back home as soon as his claim was cashed. Another
month or two elapsed, and he sold the carriage and bought a light
two-horse buggy with a small part of the money. About four months after
that, he sold one of the remaining horses; and after another month or
so had gone by, he sold the buggy and bought a saddle. He said he could
ride horseback well enough, considering that the roads were likely to be
good enough for a week or two to come. But the lingering weeks dragged
by, and finally he sold the saddle and concluded to ride bare-back. At
last--at last--he sold the other horse, and said that when his claim
settled he would walk. He is seventy years old, now, poor old man, and
his hair is white, his clothes are threadbare, and his head is bowed
with many troubles. But he says it is not for long--he is only waiting a
little while to get his claim settled, and then he is going home to see
his people again and be happy.

I think No. 37 had better tie his horses up at Gadsby's.


It is reported that Mrs. Lincoln, long threatened with insanity, has
really fallen a victim to it at last. The information comes by private
letters from Chicago. She is said to be living in a house which is empty
of furniture, she having sold it all. She labors under the delusion that
she is going to come to want, and she sells everything she can lay her
hands on. She is under guard of two old men. It is to be hoped that
now, at least, this most unfortunate woman will be spared the pitiless
slanders that have assailed her ever since she first entered the White
House, and which even the crushing affliction of the murder of her
husband was only sufficient to check for a little while.

Can it be possible that she is deserted by her friends and left to the
sole charge of the "two old men?"--she whose friendship was so precious
and whose society was so coveted a few years ago, when a good word from
her was half an aspiring man's ambition gained?


I was striding up Broadway, in the face of a driving snow storm, the
other evening in New York, when a man seized me by the hand with
a crushing grip and said: "How are you, Mark?" I said I was well
enough--it was the weather that most invited solicitude. He said he
was very, very glad to see me. I intimated that I was saturated with
felicity to see him. But all the time I was wondering who the mischief
the fellow was. He said he had always remembered me for saying a
merciful word in print for him when he was being so sorely hunted by the
press of San Francisco. I never recollected saying a merciful word for
anybody, and so I was still in suspense. Finally he said he wished I
would call and see him at his offices. ("Offices" sounded sumptuous, and
I warmed to him.) He was dealing in steamships; that is, he was engaged
in furnishing complements of passengers to them; any business I might
happen to have with the great steamer lines he would be happy to conduct
for me. I knew the chirping voice then; I remembered the complacent
countenance; I recalled the cheerful spirit that never yet had been
bowed down by any possible weight of woe; I recognized the royal
presence that always, by a destiny, clad in the outward semblance of
poverty, was yet always a millionaire within: Felix O'Byrne! Who else,
in all the world, would be smiling so blithely out from a gallant
costume in ruins and chirping about his offices and his steamships?

Nothing can crush Felix O'Byrne finally and conclusively. Truth and
Felix O'Byrne crushed to earth will rise again. Thus there is a marked
similarity between Truth and Felix O'Byrne. I hereby locate a discovery
claim of four hundred feet on this fact. Felix arrives on the Pacific
coast in poverty; shortly he is the honored contributor to Victoria
newspapers and the guest of Governors. Next he turns up in San
Francisco, poor and accused of a grave offense against the laws; he
is wearing diamonds next, and wielding a mighty influence in politics.
Crushed again--degraded, disgraced--he disappears from public life, and
it is discovered that the notes he gave for clothing, and the baggage he
left at first-class hotels, are equally fanciful as to value. Suspected
by the police, worried by landlords of low boarding houses, snubbed
at third-rate free lunches, he blooms out all at once in a bright, new
uniform, as a lieutenant in the 8th California Volunteers. When the
mystery of the transformation is solved, it transpires that poor,
despised and shunned, the tireless energies of the man have been at
work, steady and serenely as ever--and characteristically, their aim
was high; let Felix's body be where it would, his soul was always in
the clouds! It transpires that he has procured his soldierly position by
means of a petition to the Governor, signed by a number of the foremost
gentlemen of San Francisco! The confidence, the persistence, the
effrontery, and the dazzling successes of this man were bound to provoke
some admiration in any soul but an infinitesimally mean one. But the
newspapers showed Felix up, immediately, and it was plain to be seen
that he was hardly the man to augment the respectability of the military
service. He had the glory of a public military trial, though, and the
distinction of being the head and front of the chief sensation of San
Francisco for nine days, in print, and the principal lion on the street
when he went forth to show his uniform. Then he was dismissed, and
forthwith sank, down, down, down--clear out of sight. He was out of
sight a good while--and also out of mind. But not to stay. The first
bubble that rose from the vasty depths of Fenianism brought Felix to the
surface. He wrote; he lectured; he stumped the State; he aspired to lead
the movement; and lo! in the fullness of time, he bloomed again--this
time as high chief editor of the Irish People newspaper. His career
was brief but gorgeous. The Fenians got after him, and so did his
subscribers. His creditors assaulted him again. He was busted. The waves
of oblivion swept over him once more. He ceased to be talked about or
even remembered. He sailed for the East, glorified with a parting blast
from all the newspapers. After many days we heard of him achieving
a precarious living by adventurous ways--unknown, uncourted,
poverty-stricken. But so surely as the sun rises out of the night,
so surely Felix O'Byrne blazes up out of obscurity in his appointed
seasons. The news came that he was gone to Ireland, a lordly
commissioner, empowered to disburse three millions of dollars among the
Fenians! Everybody said, Alas, for the Fenians! He was in the States
again, when we heard of him next, with his periodical poverty upon him.
And next he was stumping the State of New York for a great political
organization, and spending its money with a lavish hand--for Felix was
always free with money of his own, and just as free with it when it
belongs to his friends. And afterwards we heard of him dining with the
President of the United States and the great officers of the Government,
a trusted adviser in the national policy. And next he was leaving his
baggage behind him again at the hotels and disappointing landlords as to
the quality of its contents. His next year's career was more damaging
to his good name than any that had gone before, perhaps, but it is not
necessary to give the particulars of it. He is in the mire of poverty
once more, now, as to his body, but his regal soul dwells in "offices,"
and hath dealings with no meaner matters than the nation's great
steamship lines. But be patient. The Phenix O'Byrne will rise from his
ashes yet again, and perch upon the Temple of Fame! That restless
brain of his, so prolific in invention, and those busy hands of his, so
cunning in execution, will create new surprises for the public, and a
new celebrity and prosperity for himself. What a mine of splendid talent
is in this man! what industry, what hopefulness, what perseverance,
what ingenuity! Felix would have been a power in the land if his rare
intellectual forces had been under the guiding control of principle. The
lack of that one quality is his ruin. If I had any principle to spare,
I would give it to him as cheerfully as to any man, for I bear him no


Senator Stewart made a long speech and a very able one on the vexed
question of reconstruction, a couple of days ago. It is highly praised
by Republicans. The whole speech was good, but one of the happiest
points in it, perhaps, was toward its close, where he turned a favorite
Democratic whine against that party and sang its own tune to it with
a different style of words. I speak of that everlasting whine about
"conciliating the South"--if there were not rather a properer call
to conciliate the North! The North must suffer all the exasperating
distresses of a war brought on by the South, yet stand by and see the
fact that she can have anything to be conciliated about coolly ignored!
I insert a paragraph from the speech:

Again we are appealed to to conciliate the South. What further
concessions are we called upon to make? Have we not tried conciliation
from the foundation of the Government? Have we not sacrificed justice
and humanity to appease the vile passions, prejudice and tyranny
of slaveholders long enough? Are not our statute books black with
enactments to rivet the bonds of the slave? Are not the reports of
the highest judicial tribunal disfigured with elaborate defenses of
slaveholders' pretensions? Have we not submitted long enough to be
slave-catchers for the South? Have we not bowed low enough in the dust
in vain attempts to allay their royal displeasure? And after all
this were we not required to make a sacrifice of life and property
unparalleled in modern history to restrain the wrath of these haughty
rebels, engendered only by the election of Abraham Lincoln as President
of the United States? When I reflect upon the crimes committed because
of his first election, and when I reflect upon the manner of his death
because of his second election, and the fearful results that have
followed the commission of that crime, I sometimes feel that the power
of conciliation was then exhausted.

Continuing the subject, the Senator launches the following pregnant
paragraph at the conciliation-shrieking Democracy. It puts the matter
altogether in a new light, and shows that the North has a little
unsettled conciliation bill itself that needs liquidation:

But we did not stop at the death of Abraham Lincoln--we tried further
measures of conciliation, and offered oblivion for the past and a full
restoration in the Union on terms so liberal and magnanimous as to
astonish the civilized world, and were again repulsed and defied. And
still the Democratic party ask us to conciliate their rebel friends.
They say it is impossible to harmonize the conflicting opinions in
this country without conciliation. Let loyalty then be conciliated.
Let something be done to soothe the bereaved and sorrow-stricken in the
North. The passions of the human heart are not monopolized by those who
sought to destroy the Government. Let the rebels make some atonement for
the barbarities of Andersonville and Libby prison! Let them, at least
give a pledge in the shape of a constitutional amendment that the
widows and orphans of those who have fallen shall not be robbed of their
pensions by repudiation of the Federal debt through the instrumentality
of rebel votes! Let the world see by their conduct and bearing that
they were not victorious in the war and do not propose to humiliate our
soldiers or make loyalty odious. Let the rebel press cease to discharge
its venom in vile abuse of everything sacred to justice and honor. When
force is agitated let the strong be conciliated. When the President
betrays his party and, as he tells us "deliberates much upon the very
serious and important question" of resistance to the laws for the
restoration of the Union, let the scarred veterans of Grant, Sherman
and Sheridan, be conciliated. Let those conservatives who cry "keep the
peace" conciliate an insulted and outraged people. Those who suppressed
the rebellion will secure the fruits of victory--peaceably if they
can--forcibly if they must. Let those who believe the people are
actuated only by prejudice of race against race re-echo the rebel war
cry of "negro equality," "negro supremacy," and bend the pregnant hinges
of the knee to haughty rebels for office and power; but let them take
warning that they will fall where Buchanan fell, that they will not only
merit but receive the contempt of mankind.

Hon. Mr. Axtell, member of the House from California, has also placed
himself on record upon reconstruction, in a brief speech a day or two
ago, on the Democratic side of the question, and Senator Nye on the


Territorial Enterprise, March 7, 1868




WASHINGTON, February, 1868


Right here in this heart and home and fountain-head of law--in this
great factory where are forged those rules that create good order
and compel virtue and honesty in the other communities of the land,
rascality achieves its highest perfection. Here rewards are conferred
for conniving at dishonesty, but never for exposing it. I know several
cases that come under this head; persons who have lived here longer and
are better acquainted, know of a great many. I meet a man in the Avenue,
sometimes, whose history most residents of the city are acquainted with.
He was a clerk of high grade in one of the Departments; but he was a
stranger and had no rules of action for his guidance except some effete
maxims of integrity picked up in Sunday school--that snare to the feet
of the unsophisticated!--and some unpractical moral wisdom instilled
into him by his mother, who meant well, poor soul, but whose teachings
were morally bound to train up her boy for the poor-house. Well, nobody
told this stranger how he ought to conduct himself, and so he went
on following up those old maxims of his, and acting so strangely
in consequence, that the other clerks began to whisper and nod, and
exchange glances of commiseration--for they thought that his mind was
not right--that his brain had been touched by sorrow, or hard fortune,
or something. They observed that he never stole anything; by and by they
noticed that people who came to bribe him went away with an expression
of disappointment in their faces; finally it became apparent that he
worked very hard, and performed his tasks well, and never "shirked."
Then they grew a little afraid of him. They said he was very quiet and
peaceable, but then there was no telling when a lunatic was going to
get one of those spells on him and scalp somebody. Finally the young man
caught the high grand sachem of a great bureau perpetrating a flagrant
swindle on the Government! What did he do?--call for a division of the
proceeds, like an intelligent being? No! He went, like an ignorant,
besotted ass, and told the Secretary of the Department! The Secretary
of the Department said he would look into the matter; and added, "By the
way, what business is it of yours?" And the next thing the foolish
young man knew, he found himself discharged and the intelligent sachem
promoted. Then he went and told the Senators from the State all about it
and asked them to get him another place, and they told him very properly
that he had ruined himself, and that the official doors would all be
closed against him now. He soon found out that that was the truth. He
soon found out that you can't educate a boy in a Sunday school so as
to make him useful to his country. That young man is idle to this day.
Nobody has tried harder to get employment than he, but they all know his
story; and they always refuse him. Everybody shuns him because everybody
knows he is afflicted with a loathsome leprosy--the strange, foreign
leprosy of honesty--and they are afraid they might catch it. There isn't
any danger, maybe, but then they don't like to take any chances.

Why, no one would ever imagine the absurdities that imbecile was guilty
of before he discovered what a mistake his education had been. When he
found out that they admit bad women into private rooms in one of the
Departments at all hours of the night he went and told people about it,
as if he had discovered some great thing. He was always carrying around
some old stale piece of news like that. And when he found out that in
the basement of another Department they feed and lodge and pay salaries
to 120 New York election sharps who do nothing in the world, and that
their names are set down in the record books, not as Michael O'Flaherty,
Dennis O'Flannigan, Patrick O'Dougherty, and so on, but always simply as
"FIRE AND LIGHTS," he went and told that also. And when he learned
that one of the heads of the Printing Bureau hires bindery girls with
especial reference to their unchastity, and that it was proved by
Government investigation and duly published in a book that he sometimes
sleeps with two of them at a time and has the free run of his harem to
choose from, and that he flourishes around Washington, now, the best
dressed and gallantest officer the Government has, he even thought that
trifle a matter of sufficient importance to run around and talk about.
Why, when the Tice meter was covertly foisted upon the public by the
Government, and every distiller in America peremptorily commanded to
come forward and buy one at from $600 to $1,500, when a better machine
could have been furnished for just half the money, he said he believed
there was a ten million dollar swindle behind all that, and that certain
high officials were privy to it and reaping a vast profit from it--which
was no doubt true as gospel, but where is the wisdom in talking about
these dangerous topics?

I stopped in at a fine boarding-house last night to see a friend, and
the landlady came in to collect her bill. She mentioned the fact that
she had two handsomely furnished apartments which she would like to rent
to someone. I said I knew of several Senators and Congressmen who would
be glad to have them. She said she would not venture to risk that kind
of people! I thought she was jesting, but she was not. A gent of a
Senator had called and engaged those rooms for him two months before he
was to arrive--with the understanding that he was to occupy them during
the whole session. He came, and said they were perfectly satisfactory.
After a while he wanted some more furniture added--which was done, at
a cost of two hundred dollars. He staid two months, said he was still
perfectly satisfied with the apartments, and could have no desire
to leave them, but for the fact that some friends had taken up their
residence in another part of the town, and he wished to be near them--so
he was going to move. He did not deny that the agent's contract was
duly authorized, but he said, "Have you any writing to show for it?" She
hadn't. He said, "Well!"--and left. The law does not permit members of
Congress to be sued. So there was no redress. The breached contract had
to remain breached.

She rented the rooms to a Territorial delegate, but refused to let him
have them unless he would take them for the remainder of the session,
because she had a chance at the moment to rent them to a gentleman for
a month or two, and she would rather have a gentleman than a Congressman
because Congressmen kept such late hours and burned so much fuel and
gas. He occupied the rooms twenty-four hours, expressed himself entirely
pleased with them, but had found lodgings which were cheaper and would
do him as well. And he moved. He moved first, when nobody was watching,
and said that afterward. He did not deny his contract either, but
refused to fulfill it or give any redress. The law cannot touch the
delegate. Isn't this a curious state of things? Isn't it refreshing to
see men break laws so coolly whose sole business is law-making? I wonder
if all the Congressmen are so unreliable? If they are, I think I could
subscribe to this landlady's suggestive remark that it is pleasanter to
have a "gentleman" around than a Congressman.

I said I would be glad to have her general opinion of Washington
probity; and she said her opinion was that it did not exist in a
very great degree. She believed that the whole city was polluted with
peculation and all other forms of rascality--debauched and demoralized
by the wholesale dishonesty that prevails in every single department of
the Washington Government, great and small. She said that false weights
were used in the market, the grocery stores, the butcher shops and all
such places. The meat a butcher sells you for seven pounds can never be
persuaded to weigh more than five and a half in your kitchen scales at
home; a grocer's pound of butter usually weights only three-quarters in
scales that are unconscious and have no motive to deceive. They paint
rocks and add them to your coal; they put sand in your sugar; lime in
your flour; water in your milk; turpentine in your whisky; clothespins
in your sausages; turnips in your canned peaches; they will rather cheat
you out of ten cents than make a dollar out of you by honest dealing.
That was her opinion. What little I have seen of Washington in the short
time I have been here, leads me to think it must be correct.

The Delegation.

Senator Nye is absent, temporarily. I see by the telegrams that he
was to be one of the speakers at a grand Grant mass meeting at Cooper
Institute, a night or two ago. Mr. Ashley is attending to his duties as
usual in the House. Senator Stewart is working hard, on Nevada matters
of various kinds, particularly, and on everything of importance that
comes before the Senate, in a general way. He is about he hardest
working man in Congress I believe. Mr. Stewart has just reported back
from committee a bill to straighten out all public land entanglements
in Nevada, which will place Nevada's lands in such a shape that she can
handle them with facility instead of finding her hands constantly tied
by disabling rulings of the Interior Department. Stewart's School of
Mines has received high commendations from all persons interested
in mining interests, and there appears to be no opposition to it of
consequence in Congress. It is very likely to pass, shortly. Somebody
got up a counter bill to establish a Bureau of Mines in Washington,
instead, and put it under the control of that poor, decrepit,
bald-headed, played-out, antediluvian Old Red Sandstone formation
which they call the Smithsonian Institute. What the mischief would that
drowsing old National Ass do with as live a thing as a mining interest?
Just as usual, it would go after the "palezoic formation," and if it
found that there wasn't any palezoic formation about first class mines,
it wouldn't ever care a cent about those mines. It is a cussed old
palezoic formation itself, and has no business going around her in its
shroud among living men at this day of the world. Its Bureau of Mines
died early.

Mines! The idea of the Smithsonian Institute meddling with mines; and
with shafts and tunnels and whims; and with swarms of workmen; and with
the stir and bustle and blasphemy of teamsters; and with steam engines
and the clatter and crash of desperate forty-stamp mills! The idea of
a toothless old grandmother going to war! Read what it is that this
venerable Palezoic Formation is worrying itself about now--from its last
annual report:

"QUESTIONS IN ISSUE--1. What classifications may be adopted for the
discoveries made in Belgium and neighboring countries of objects
anterior to the Carlovingian era?

"2. Is the ogival style to be considered as the natural and complete
development of the Roman style?

"3. What is conclusively known respecting the different kinds of
horseshoes found in Gallo-Roman mines, and the manner of using them?

"4. Should churches be made to front toward the east?

"5. To determine the age of objects in allex from their degree of

If they gave the dreaming Institute supervision of our mines out there,
it would spend the first twenty-five years prospecting for Gallo-Roman
horseshoes, and the next twenty-five trying to find out how the
Gallo-Romans of the rabbit-skin robe and the grasshopper diet used
such jackass shoes as they might come across in abandoned shafts on the
Divide. Let her stick to her palezoic formation. That is her best hold.

The question on the admission of Mr. Thomas, of Maryland, to a seat in
the Senate, has been the main subject of debate for some time, now, next
to reconstruction. Thomas was always a rebel in opinion and sympathy,
but as he couldn't go into the field himself, he gave his son a hundred
dollars and started him to the Confederacy to join its armies. These
things will in all probability send him back to his constituents minus
his Senatorial seat. Mr. Steward has made two good speeches on the
question. An extract from his last will not be out of place here:

Mr. President, I do not wish to detain the Senate or to prolong this
debate; but I desire to make a single remark. I wish to ask the Senate
how this gentleman would appear if he were defending his property from
a suit in the South for confiscation? They confiscated in the South the
property of men who were loyal to this Government.

Not let me see where he would stand before a rebel Court in such a case;
or before a rebel Congress, if he were applying there for admission to
a seat. Suppose he had moved over there, and was elected to their
Congress, and they had a rule preventing any one who had been faithful
to this Government from taking a seat with them. What kind of a plea
could he make then? Could he not remind them of the fact that when the
war commenced he took his position with Jeff Davis, with Cobb, with
Toombs, and the rest of them, that there was no power in this Government
to sustain itself, and so declared in a letter in which he resigned an
important office, so as to give his indorsement to the movement they
were about to inaugurate! Could he not say, "I associated with your
patriotic leaders; I was a friend in the darkest hour of the rebellion
of Jefferson Davis; I, too, resigned a high office under the Government
of the United States to give aid and countenance to your movement?"
Could he not say that after the rebellion had been inaugurated, after he
had resigned this high office, he went to Maryland and there associated
with rebels; that he gave them his moral support; that he denied any
sympathy or aid to the Union men of this State; that he refused even to
vote under the Yankee Government; that he refused to take any of their
oaths of loyalty; that he refused to recognize the late United States in
any form? Could he not say further, "I do more than that. Being myself
past the age to do military duty, I furnish my only son to aid you in
gaining your independence; although poor, I gave him $100--all the money
I could raise--to send him, my only son, to you to aid you in achieving
your independence. Will you, therefore, take from me my property? Was
I disloyal to you? Have I not aided you?" Would not the argument be

But it is said by the Senator from Pennsylvania that we must tolerate
differences of opinion. Sir, there are some differences of opinion that
we cannot tolerate and will not tolerate. We will not tolerate any man
in the opinion that this Government has no power to maintain its own
existence. We will not tolerate the opinion that the Union ought to
be dissolved. We will not tolerate secession. We will not tolerate the
opinion that secession is a constitution right. We fought against this
doctrine, and we fought against those who acted upon it. The verdict of
the war has established, if it has established any fact, that no such
opinion shall exist in this country.

The Postmaster.

That candidate for the Postmastership in San Francisco I spoke of in my
last, has "tied his horse up at Gadsby's." Well, I thought he would.


It is dead for good, now, I suppose. It promised so fairly, two months
ago, that everybody boldly turned prophet and said it would certainly
succeed. But it didn't. Nobody's prophecies concerning Washington
matters ever come out right. Isaiah himself would be a failure here.
Hon. Thad. Stevens, the bravest old ironclad in the Capitol, fought hard
for impeachment, even when he saw that it could not succeed. He is not
choice in his language when he speaks on this subject, concerning his
fellow-committeemen and Congress generally. He simply says the whole
tribe of them are "Damned Cowards." It is the finest word painting any
Congressional topic has produced this session.


The Sandwich Islands Reciprocity treaty, having been reported back
favorably from the Committee on Foreign Relations, remains now to be
acted upon by the Senate. General McCook has visited every Senator
and talked with him, and almost all of them have expressed themselves
satisfied with the treaty and willing to vote for it. As he has done
all he can possibly do for the treaty, and as he is necessarily tired
of Washington by this time, General McCook proposes to leave for San
Francisco and the Islands in the steamer of March 1.


The man who is here contesting Hon. Mr. Hooper's seat as delegate from
Utah, is a Mr. McGrorty, who was run for delegate as a practical joke.
McGrorty got 105 votes, and Hooper got a little over 15,000. This small
discrepancy don't worry McGrorty, however. He says the 15,000 would have
voted for him but were afraid of the bishops of the church. The fact is,
the contest will never come off. One hates to make a positive statement
about Washington affairs, but I venture to make that one because:
McGrorty did not serve a notice of contest on Hooper within 30 days
after the election, stating the grounds of the contest. United States
law makes this imperative. Congress will hardly go behind its own acts.
Therefore, I have ventured to say that the contesting in Congress of
this seat is a thing that will hardly get further than an inquiry by a
committee and die.


Hay is somewhat cheaper than a week or two ago. It is now retailed at
five cents per pound and is to be had by the wagon load in this city at
about $75 or $80 per ton. Several loads of hay of an excellent quality
arrived here yesterday from St. Clair's Station on the Overland
route.--Territorial Enterprise.

In my time, hay items were a great moral stand-by. I thought you might
make some use of this one. I have known Dan de Quille to follow
a hay-wagon all over town, and write a new lie about it on every
corner--and make twelve distinct items about the same wagon, and fetch
it from every locality in the Territory of Nevada from which a hay-wagon
could by any possibility hail from. The driver's name might be stated
correctly enough, in the first one, to be Smith, but the eleven aliases
that marched their disastrous course through the succeeding ones,
infallibly caused that driver to be looked upon with the gravest
suspicion forever after.


Firewood is at present rather scarce. It sells in this city at $25
per cord for Washoe, and $30 for nut pine. It is a little cheaper--so
business men say--to buy of the Chinese wood peddlers.--Territorial

In my time, also, when the morning inquest failed, and other matters
were scarce, it was considered good jurisprudence to fall back on wood.
Wood is a subject that is able to stir the souls of any community.
Wood is a thing that can always be safely elaborated. If I had all the
wood-piles of my conscience, that I stole from Daggett and Tom Fitch
with no other object than that Dan might discourse learnedly to the
public about the damnable quality of the wood that was being imposed
upon an outraged public by the satraps of Washoe Valley, I would be
a happier man than I am. I do not know what satraps is, and I do not
suppose that Dan knew what satraps was, either, but he always considered
it to be a crusher, anyway. He always regarded it as a word to be
resorted to only in the extremest emergencies.

ROUGH.--Several large quartz wagons upset yesterday on the road leading
from this city to Gold Hill, but we heard of no accident to life or limb
nor serious damage to any of the wagons.--Territorial Enterprise.

I am just as well satisfied as I am of anything, that that disaster
never occurred. In my time it was never looked upon as any trick at all
to turn over a lot of quartz wagons on the Divide to fill out a local
column with. To find a petrified man, or break a stranger's leg, or cave
an imaginary mine, or discover some dead Indians in a Gold Hill tunnel,
or massacre a family at Dutch Nick's, were feats and calamities that
we never hesitated about devising when the public needed matters of
thrilling interest for breakfast. The seemingly tranquil ENTERPRISE
office was a ghastly factory of slaughter, mutilation and general
destruction in those days.

These old ENTERPRISE fabrications about wood and hay and suffering
quartz wagons, read more pleasantly to me, now, than any amount of
poetry. And when I come across items about Jack Perry, and Birdsall,
and Steve Gillis, and those other highway robbers who practice upon
unoffending traveling showmen on the Divide, they are full of interest
to me, especially if it appears that the parties have got into any
trouble. I do not see their names often, now--which encourages me to
think they have pretty much all got into the Penitentiary at last,

I was at a banquet given to the honorable "Society of Good Fellows,"
last night, and it was a particularly cheerful affair. I mention
this subject more particularly, because I wish to introduce in
this connection what I consider to be a genuine uncompromising and
unmitigated "first-rate notice." Let the Washington Express be your
model in matters of this kind hereafter. The question being on the
fourth regular toast:

Fourth. Woman:

"All honor to woman, the sweetheart, the wife;

The delight of the fireside by night and by day.

Who never does anything wrong in her life,

Except when permitted to have her own way."

"To this toast the renowned humorist and writist, Mark Twain, responded
and it is superfluous to say that while he stood upon the floor
declaiming for the fair divinities, all that banqueting crew laid down
with laughter. His sliding scene; his trials and tribulations; those
he had paid for--and not; his valentine; his sublime inspirations and
humorous deductions set the very table in a roar. He's a phunny fellow
and no mistake, and blessed, indeed, were the G.F.'s with the honor of
his company."

There isn't anything very mild about that, is there? I hadn't a just
appreciation of how infernally funny I had been in that speech until I
read that notice. I had an idea that the New York Herald and the Tribune
had complimented me fully up to my deserts several times, but I guess
not--I like the wild enthusiasm of the Express better.

It was a very, very jolly entertainment throughout. I observe one
thing on this side that is as it should be. At such banquets as I have
attended here and in New York, I noticed that among the regular toasts
they always had a couple for "The Pacific Coast" and "The Press of the
Pacific," and that they give them prominence. To the one last named Lord
Fairfax of the New Orleans Picayune responded in the happiest terms last


Territorial Enterprise, March 13, 1868





WASHINGTON, February 22.

This birthday of Washington was historical before; it is doubly so now.
Yesterday the news spread abroad over the town that the President had
sent General Thomas to eject Secretary Stanton from the War Office
and assume the duties of the post himself. It was an open defiance
of Congress--a kingly contempt for long settled forms and customs--a
reckless disregard of law itself! It was the first time, in the history
of the nation, that the Chief Magistrate had presumed to dismiss a
Cabinet officer without the consent of the Senate while that body was in

The excitement was intense, and it steadily augmented as night
approached. Hotels and saloons were crowded with men, who moved
restlessly about, talking vehemently and accompanying their words with
emphatic gestures. The sidewalks were thronged with hurrying passengers,
and everywhere the sound of trampling feet and a discord of angry voices
was in the air. Old citizens remembered no night like this in Washington
since Lincoln was assassinated.

Strangely enough, the men who should have been most concerned about the
storm were the only souls that rode serenely above it. Mr. Seward and
the President sat at a state dinner in the White House, cheery and
talkative among distraught and pensive guests; General Grant was at the
theatre; Stanton made his bed in the peaceful War Office, and General
Thomas capered gaily among fantastic maskers at a carnival fandango!
Meanwhile the tempest swept the continent on the wings of the telegraph.

The Senate sat at night, and multitudes flocked to the Capitol to stare
and listen. The House resolved to make Saturday a working day for once,
and both bodies decreed that for the first time since Washington's death
Congress should transact business on the anniversary of his birthday.

This morning "impeachment" was in everybody's mouth; Thomas' arrest
was discussed in the streets and in the hotels; Stanton was lauded by
Republicans for sleeping in the War Office and holding the political
fortress--and cursed by the Democrats; that Hon. Judd and Schenck
watched with him till 3 A. M., and that Hon. Thayer remained all night,
brought those gentlemen a fair share likewise, of the praise and the

By 9 o'clock--full three hours before the sitting of Congress, long
processions of men and women were wending their way toward the Capitol
in the nipping winter air, and all vacant spaces about the doors were
packed with people waiting to get in. When I reached there at noon, it
was difficult to make one's way through the wide lobbies and passages,
so great was the throng. There was not a vacant seat in the galleries,
and all the doorways leading to them were full of tiptoeing men and
women, with a swarm of anxious citizens at their backs, eagerly watching
for such scanty crumbs of comfort as chance opportunities of glancing
between their shoulders or under their arms. I went immediately to the
reporters' gallery--it was about full, too, and excited doorkeepers
and sentinels were challenging all comers and manfully resisting an
assaulting party of men, women and children who were the fathers,
brothers, wives, uncles, aunts, cousins, friends, schoolmates, admirers
of editors, correspondents, reporters, members of Congress, Cabinet
officers and the President of the United States--and consequently they
demanded to know why they couldn't go into the reporters' gallery! That
was it--why couldn't they? Some people are unreasonable, and some don't
know anything; these parties belong pretty exclusively to the one or the
other of these classes. They were all--every one of them--going to
have the doorkeeper discharged. They said so. [Surely such exceedingly
influential people would not threaten what they could not perform.] But
they did not get in. But others had got seats who were not strictly of
the press, I suspect; twenty perhaps--among them several ladies. They
were a good deal in the way, but they did not mind that. I was glad to
see that it did not discommode them.

The scene within was spirited--it was unusual, too. The great galleries
presented a sea of eager, animated faces; above these, more were massed
in the many doorways; below, in the strong light, a few members walked
nervously up and down, outside the rows of seats; a very few were
writing--telegrams no doubt; the great majority had their heads together
in groups and couples, talking earnestly; in every countenance strong
feeling was depicted; a member from Maine was making a speech about a
patent cooking stove, but never a soul was listening to him. Some
said the stove business was gotten up by the Democrats to stave off
impeachment; others said the Radicals got it up to gain time and give
the Reconstruction Committee a chance to make up its report. Everybody
waited impatiently, and watched the door sharply--they wanted to see
that Committee come. By and by Mr. Paine entered and there was a buzz;
but it was a disappointment--he only spoke a word to a colleague and
went out again. The tiresome stove man finished. It was a relief to the
galleries, who somehow seemed to look upon this trifling about cooking
stoves as a fraud upon themselves, and a sort of affront, as well,
thrust forward, as it was, at a time when any idiot ought to know that
impeachment was the order of the day!

No committee yet. Something must be done. Motion to adjourn, "in honor
of Washington." Amendment--to read Washington's Farewell Address. Both
were voted down. Ayes and nays called on both, and the long, tedious,
monotonous calling of names and answering followed. The vote was
no--everybody knew what it would be before. Before the roll call was
finished, Boutwell came in [sensation]; afterwards, at intervals,
Bingham [sensation], Paine [sensation], several other committee men,
and finally Thad. Stevens himself. [Super-extraordinary sensation!] The
haggard, cadaverous old man dragged himself to his place and sat down.
There was a soul in his sunken eyes, but otherwise he was a corpse that
was ready for the shroud. He held his precious impeachment papers in his
hand, signed at last! In the eleventh hour his coveted triumph had come.
Richelieu was not nearer the grave, Richelieu was not stirred up by a
sterner pride, when he came from his bed of death to crown himself with
his final victory.

The buzzing and whispering died out, and an impressive silence reigned
in its stead. The Speaker addressed the galleries in a clear voice
that reached the farthest recesses of the house, and warned the
great concourse that the slightest manifestation of approbation or
disapprobation of anything about to be said, would be followed by the
instant expulsion of the offending person from the galleries; he
read the rules, at some length, upon the subject, and charged the
Sergeant-at-Arms and his subordinates to perform their duty without
hesitation or favor. Then Mr. Stevens rose up and in a voice which was
feeble but yet distinctly audible because of the breathless stillness
that hung over the great audience like a spell, he read the resolution
that was to make plain the way for the impeachment of the President of
the United States!

The words that foreshadowed so mighty an event sent a thrill through the
assemblage, but there was no manifestation of the emotion save in the
sudden lighting of their countenances. They ventured upon no applause,
nor upon any expression of dissent. Mr. Brooks of New York took the
floor, and in a frenzied speech protested against impeachment, and
threatened civil war if the measure carried. Mr. Bingham made an able
speech in favor of the movement. The ball was fairly opened now, and
speech followed speech from 2 in the afternoon till almost midnight.
During all that time the galleries were filled with people, and their
excited interest showed no symptoms of abatement. The House adjourned to
meet at 10 A. M. on Monday, instead of at noon. It has been a tremendous
day. The nation has seen few that were so filled with ominous signs and
bodings of disaster.

When it was moved to-day to read Washington's Farewell Address, Mr.
Ingersoll inquired of a neighbor if it would not be more appropriate to
read Andrew Johnson's Farewell Address! In this connection I will remark
that the following was picked up in one of the lobbies. It was entitled


"Soft you; a word or two before you go. I have done the State some
damage, and they know it; No more of that:--I pray you, in your letters,
When you shall these unlucky deeds relate, Speak of me as I am; some
things extenuate, But set down naught in malice; then must you speak
Of one that ruled not wisely nor too well; Of one, easily jealous, and,
being wrought, Perplexed in the extreme, did Like the base Judean, throw
a pearl away, Richer than all his tribe!" How the Delegations

From the Pacific coast will stand on impeachment, no man can tell till
Monday. You know as well as I, that the Oregon delegation will be likely
to favor it; that the Nevada and California Senators will be likely to
favor it; that Ashley and Higby in the House will be likely to favor it,
and Johnson and Axtell be apt to oppose. But these gentlemen cannot be
seen to-night, and it would be hard to guess what effect the flood of
telegrams may have that will roll in upon us tomorrow from all parts of
the country.


Territorial Enterprise, April 7, 1868



WASHINGTON, March 20, 1868

The Mining School

Dwinelle's curious resolution concerning Senator Stewart's proposed
mining school has reached here--and will be laid before Congress and in
all human probability will be tabled there. It is a funny document,
take it as you will. It has two clauses in it that are especially
entertaining, and would be still more so if they were set to music.
One of them proposes to exclude all foreigners from the school--which
proposition is narrow enough in policy, and ungenerous enough, withal,
to have been resurrected from the dark ages. We that have benefitted so
much from the labors and discoveries of Europe's men of science; we that
have to send to her so often for teachers; we that are as welcome in her
great mining schools as her own citizens, and are freely according every
privilege which they enjoy and upon the same terms, ought to be ashamed
of so selfish, so poor-spirited a measure as this. The Freiburg school
is full of Americans. They will not be pleased to learn how America
proposes to show her appreciation of open-handed German hospitality.
Measures like Dwinelle's are not the things that made the Californian
name a synonym for liberality and generosity.

The other clause I have spoken of proposes to divide the revenue from
the mines among a number of States and let them endow with it as many
mining departments in as many colleges. The idea is threadbare and old.
The Japanese astrologer, Prof. Blake, who knows so much more than it is
lawful for any one man to know, is here, now, trying to get the
revenues from the mining States conferred upon Columbia College, for the
establishing of a mining department in that institution.

Two hundred and eighty other colleges are begging for the same revenues
for the same purpose--and Dwinelle comes in at this late day with the
same old impracticable idea. Why, even the poor purblind, broken-winded,
Old Red Sandstone palezoic saurian, the Smithsonian Institute, has
awakened from its ancient dream of Roman horseshoes, Grecian funeral
processions, and pre-Adamite ferns and turnips, and it wants the
revenues to endow a Mining Bureau with! And why shouldn't the old
drowser have its Mining Bureau to fossilize along with its mastodon
jaw-teeth, its Egyptian mummies, its pickled Indians and its
Agricultural Department that never raises anything? Why shouldn't it
have it and so save some old century plant of science from starvation
by giving him the professorship? No greater good would be done by
Dwinelle's diffusive process.

Dwinelle should have gotten up something original, anyhow. Even the
intelligent contrabands are ahead of him in this thing.

A negro in a Mississippi Convention wants the mining revenues to
establish a Mining Bureau in his district school with, and has been
making speeches on the subject. He says they have no mine, but they can
build one for purposes of practical instruction, as the Czar has done
in St. Petersburg. He says his shaft would be full of water most of the
time, on account of the ground being swampy, but then mines have to have
pumps anyhow, cannot be complete without them, and where would be the
use of pumps if there were no water to pump? How like are the ideas of
wise men! This fellow wants to exclude whites from the school! He is no
more liberal with American whites than Dwinelle is with foreigners.

They want a mining department in New Jersey. They haven't any mines
either. They want it in Indiana, in Florida and the icebergs of Maine (I
suppose there are icebergs in Maine--I have never been there). They want
it in Texas, and next the Indians and the Chinamen will be clamoring for
it, no doubt.

If this little revenue of a quarter of a million is to be divided up
and frittered away as proposed by the resolution of Dwinelle, let the
Mississippi contrabands have a share to "build a mine" with. Surely a
quarter of a million dollars ought to accomplish more good when divided
up among a quarter of a million colleges than it could when concentrated
in one school. The Smithsonian Institute makes a strong appeal in its
usual lucid style, but I can only give an extract, wherein it shows
its peculiar competency in the matter of--God only knows what--reducing
silver ores, maybe. Read:

"It has already been remarked, that in these bypodendrous, the disurion
of the laminar cantoid is preceded by the formation of a quadrilateral
hexahedron, which is converted into super-palezoic spherules; now the
same is the case in the disruption of all the other laminar dioramics,
just as in the constricted unduloid, until the rupture of equilibrium
occurs and thus therefore makes the welkin ring."

Well, I should say so. I always had that same idea myself, but some
how I never could express it, you know. I knew just as well as I knew
anything, that it would fetch the welkin if I ever could get at it
right, but then the hexahedron palezoic cantenoids were always too many
for me. For good moral, unexciting light literature for the home circle,
commend me to the official documents of the Smithsonian Institute.

Such unpracticable schemes as those proposed in the California
resolutions obstruct and delay legislation and accomplish no good. It
would be much better to write Congressmen and suggest amendments to
pending bills then clog their way with memorials which must be discussed
in Congress and valuable time thereby lost.

A Good Job in Danger.

The firm of Kellogg, Hueston & Co., assayors, of San Francisco, have
been endeavoring to get an ingeniously worded bill through Congress to
give them the monopoly of assaying and refining for the Branch Mint
and take that service entirely out [of] the hands of the Mint. The
prodigious job occupies small room in the bill, and is crushed into
seeming insignificance by a great display of other matters of pretended
importance, but it will probably fail. A large amount of lobbying has
been done in its favor, but some prominent New York Californian firms
have protested so strongly against the measure that there is every
reason to believe it will be killed. It is thought that the committee
will report in favor of taking the assaying and refining of gold and
silver bullion away from the Mint and giving it to assayers generally.
Whether this will improve matters or not, remains to be seen. It is
hardly likely that it will.

Another One.

The Goat Island scheme of the Western Pacific Railroad Company looks
dubious. It promises to fail in the House. It proposes to give the
company a portion of Yerba Buena Island for a depot, with the condition
that in time of war the Government may take and occupy the premises and
the buildings as long as may be necessary, and pay the company such sum
as shall be fair and reasonable for such use and occupation. The House
Committee are not disposed to report the measure favorably.

Governmental Blasting. "On ye fifth day of November Guy Fawkes he did
aspire To blow up Kings and Parlement Wi' dreadful gun powdire."

And four days ago, as every one believed, a modern Guy Fawkes aspired to
blow up Capitol and Congress wi' dreadful glycerine. But so far he has
not succeeded. The news that 180 pounds of glycerine had been stolen in
New York and was doubtless then under the foundations of the Capitol,
set Washington in a flutter. It was enough glycerine to blow up the
United States, let alone the Capitol. Sir Christopher Wren shook the
massive walls and towers of Old St. Paul's to "pi" with 18 pounds of
blasting powder. Then who would be willing to be in the District of
Columbia when 180 pounds of nitro-glycerine were touched off? I sat
at my window, 500 yards from the Capitol, all day, and waited for the
gorgeous show. In fancy I could see the vast dome shot suddenly toward
the zenith, like a giant's helmet, and a chaos of shattered columns,
tiles and capitals whizzing after it with here and there a Senator going
end over end, among the fragments, the half of a Representative gaining
on a Supreme Judge with his legs stove up, a gallery full of "niggers"
sailing toward the sun, mutilated lobbyists whistling aloft like
rockets, but still hitched to chairmen of committees by the buttonhole
process, and a gallery of reporters chasing the general wreck through
the air, serene in the contemplation of so sublime an item!

But the exhibition did not come off--postponed on account of the
weather, maybe. Visitors to the Capitol that day fidgeted around
uneasily for a few minutes and then left the building; and it was
observed that when they walked through the lower corridors, they
walked very fast. Congressmen looked uncomfortable; their speeches were
rambling and disjointed, and the usual squabble over adjournment was
omitted. There was some excuse for a scare. There are men in Washington
who would blow up the Capitol fast enough if they could achieve an
illustrious name, like Booth, by doing it and be worshipped as Booth is
worshipped. All they want is the nitro-glycerine and the opportunity.
A newspaper hint that the glycerine telegram was an advertising dodge,
helped to destroy belief in the blasting conspiracy, and the fact that
several days have elapsed without disaster, has about finished it.


A few days ago, everybody was entirely satisfied that the President
would be impeached and removed with all possible dispatch. To-day nobody
has a settled opinion about the matter. The Democrats do not howl about
impeachment much now, a fact that awakens suspicion. Maybe they are
satisfied that to martyr the President would make a vast amount of
Democratic capital for the next election. Martyrdom is the coveted
thing, now, by everybody. The Republicans show a disposition to quit
talking about the impeaching of a President on stern principle for
a contemptuous violation of law and his oath of office; they show a
disposition to drop the high moral ground that such a precedent must not
be sent down to hamper posterity, and they already openly talk about the
"impolicy" of impeaching. It would be curious to hear a Court talking of
the "impolicy" of convicting a man for murder in the first degree. This
everlasting compelling of honesty, morality, justice and the law to
bend the knee to policy, is the rottenest thing in a republican form
of government. It is cowardly, degraded and mischievous; and in its own
good time it will bring destruction upon this broad-shouldered fabric of
ours. I believe the Prince of Darkness could start a branch hell in the
District of Columbia (if he has not already done it), and carry it
on unimpeached by the Congress of the United States, even though the
Constitution were bristling with articles forbidding hells in this
country. And if there were moneyed offices in it, Congress would take
stock in the concern, too, and in less than three weeks Fessenden and
Washburne would fill it full of their poor relations. What a rotten,
rotten, and unspeakable nasty concern this nest of departments is, with
its brainless battalions of Congressional poor-relation-clerks and their
book-keeping, pencil-sharpening strumpets.

In Abeyance.

M. H. Farley's confirmation as Surveyor General of California is still
in abeyance in the Senate. He comes well recommended, but latterly the
Senate has been thinking more of impeachment than Executive sessions.

If Ross Browne could rush his Ministership to China before the Senate
right away, he might secure a confirmation; but if the matter is delayed
till Mr. Burlingame arrives there will be chances against him. Mr.
B.'s voice will have great weight, and his late letter to the State
Department evidences that he has a man to suggest for the place--Dr.
Wells, no doubt, the distinguished Secretary to the China mission.

The gentleman who came here to get the San Francisco Postmastership
still "keeps his horse tied up at Gadsby's." I took a vast amount of
trouble to secure that horse in that position for the future, because I
thought Upton was to have the Postmastership; but it seems the President
not only promised the gentleman I requested to go to him that he would
cancel the horse-man's appointment, but with aggravated generosity said
he believed he would not appoint anybody at all for the present. That
was drawing it unnecessarily fine. I think I must go and have a "Talk
with the President" myself, like "J.B.S." and "Mack," and those other
newspaper correspondents.


I, even I, have had a most important "Talk with the President"--this
evening at the general reception. I said:

"How is your health, Mr. President?" And he said:

"It cannot be of any particular consequence to you, young man. I keep a

How do you think that will be likely to affect the political complexion
of the times? It will complicate things some, won't it?


Territorial Enterprise, April 24, 1868

[written by Enterprise Staff]


This celebrated humorist, after having visited the Holy Land and all the
principal cities of the old world, will again once more press his
foot upon his native sagebrush this morning. We received the following
telegram from him last night dated at Coburn's: "I am doing well, having
crossed one divide without getting robbed anyway. Mark Twain."

Owing to the dissatisfaction of many in regard to the smallness of the
hall [Athletic Hall], in which it was at first proposed that Mark should
lecture, arrangements have been made by which the Opera House is secured
for this Monday and Tuesday nights: the Webb sisters having very kindly
given their consent to release the house to him for those two nights.
This arrangement having been made, he will not lecture on Saturday night
as was advertised--he will have enough to do for three or four days to
shake hands and swap yarns with his old friends. The box office will
open on Monday from 10 o'clock A.M. till 4 o'clock P.M. when seats may
be secured for both nights.

Territorial Enterprise, late April 1868

[written by Enterprise Staff]

Mark Twain we have a right to claim as a Washoe humorist, and claiming
him let us not fail to do what we can to encourage him by showing him
that we appreciate his efforts to amuse and instruct us. He comes back
to us after many wanderings by sea and land in foreign countries, with
his mind and portfolio enriched with choice collections of fact and
fancy gleaned in places holy and not holy. He is a living budget of not
the jokes of all nations but of jokes upon all nations, suggested by
their peculiarities of manners, customs, and appearance. We predict for
him the most crowded and brilliant audience of the season. All who
have ever seen or heard of Mark Twain and his genius as a brilliant
descriptive writer, wit, and humorist--and who has not?--will desire to
go with him aboard the Quaker City, carpet bag in hand, and gaze on the
sleek faces and heads of the pious pilgrims to the Holy Land, all as yet
unafflicted with the wilting nausea of sea-sickness, and looking forward
with godly and courageous eyes toward the sacred soil and cities of the
country in which scriptures were born; all will wish to accompany Mark
to Palestine and ramble with him among the musty old palaces, churches,
and tombs--in short, all will wish to follow him wherever he goes.
As his followers will be many, let those who do not desire to be left
behind on the voyage go early tomorrow and secure seats for the through


The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, June 7, 1864


John Richardson, whose taste for a cigar must be inordinate, gratified
it on Saturday night last by forcing his way into a tobacconist's on
Broadway, near Kearny street, and helping himself to fourteen hundred
"smokes." In his hurry, however, he did not select the best, as the
stolen tobacco was only valued at fifty dollars. He was congratulating
himself last evening in a saloon on Dupont street, in having secured
weeds for himself and all his friends, when lo! a Rose bloomed before
his eyes, and he wilted. The scent of that flower of detectives was too
strong even for the aroma of the stolen cigars. Richardson was conveyed
to the station-house, where a kit of neat burglar's tools was found on
his person. He is now reposing his limbs on an asphaltum floor--a bed
hard as the ways of unrighteousness.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, June 11, 1864


Samuel Marks had Dora Marks and Henry Wood before the Police Court
yesterday, charged with assault and battery. The plaintiff said that
Dora and Henry came into his shop, on Washington street, last Tuesday,
and, without saying a word as to how they came there, knocked him into
a senseless condition by blows on his head. Henry testified that he saw
the fair Dora enter Samuel's shop, and shortly after he heard a clatter
as if heaven and earth were bumping together, and running down to
Samuel's doorway, and standing by the door-sill because he had no right
to enter the premises, he saw Samuel hit the lamb-like Dora a slap on
the sconce with a tailor's press board, and instantly after a huge pair
of shears came flying at him. Before he could dodge them, they partially
scalped his cranium, causing a plentiful flow of the ruby, and he
thought that he had better prospect in other diggings, not so dangerous,
and left. The meek and war-worn Dora sat like a penitent Magdalen, and
had nary word to say, and the austere decision of the Judge was that the
respective defendants, Henry and Dora, do appear in that Court this day,
and receive sentence for their crimes.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, June 15, 1864


It is surprising to notice what trifling, picayune cases are frequently
brought before the Police Judge by parties who conceive that their
honor has been attacked, a gross outrage committed on their person
or reputation, and they must have justice "though the heavens fall."
Distinguished counsel are employed, witnesses are summoned and made
to dance attendance to the successive steps of the complaints, and
the patience of the Judge and Reporters is severely tested by the time
occupied in their investigation which, after a close examination of
witnesses, cross-questioning by the counsel, and perhaps some brilliant
peroration at the close, with the especial injunction to the Court that
it were better that ten guilty men should escape punishment rather than
one innocent (one eye obliquely winking to their client) person should
suffer; with a long breath of satisfaction that the agony is over
about a hair pulling case, a lost spoon or a broken window, the Judge
dismisses the case, and, (if we must say it) the lawyers pocket their
fees, and the client pockets his or her indignation that the defendant
escaped the punishment which to their view was so richly deserved. Thus,
yesterday, William Towerick, a deaf old man, complained that a woman
struck him with a basket, on Mission street. The good looking German
interpreter almost woke up the dead in his efforts to shout in the
plaintiff's auricular appendage the respective questions propounded by
counsel, but had eventually to give it up as a bad job and let the
old lady the plaintiff's wife, try. Case dismissed. Then comes
another complainant with a long chapter of grievances against one Rosa
Bustamente, who didn't like her little poodle dog. Bad words from both
parties and a flower pot thrown at somebody, bursting five panes of
glass valued at twenty-five cents each. Court considered that plaintiff
and defendant stood on nearly equal footing, and ordered the case

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, June 23, 1864


At five minutes to nine o'clock last night, San Francisco was favored by
another earthquake. There were three distinct shocks, two of which were
very heavy, and appeared to have been done on purpose, but the third
did not amount to much. Heretofore our earthquakes--as all old
citizens experienced in this sort of thing will recollect--have been
distinguished by a soothing kind of undulating motion, like the roll of
waves on the sea, but we are happy to state that they are shaking her
up from below now. The shocks last night came straight up from that
direction; and it is sad to reflect, in these spiritual times, that they
might possibly have been freighted with urgent messages from some of
our departed friends. The suggestion is worthy a moment's serious
reflection, at any rate.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, June 25, 1864


If one tire of the drudgeries and scenes of the city, and would breathe
the fresh air of the sea, let him take the cars and omnibuses, or,
better still, a buggy and pleasant steed, and, ere the sea breeze sets
in, glide out to the Cliff House. We tried it a day or two since. Out
along the railroad track, by the pleasant homes of our citizens, where
architecture begins to put off its swaddling clothes, and assume form
and style, grace and beauty, by the neat gardens with their green
shrubbery and laughing flowers, out where were once sand hills and
sand-valleys, now streets and homesteads. If you would doubly enjoy
pure air, first pass along by Mission Street Bridge, the Golgotha of
Butcherville, and wind along through the alleys where stand the whiskey
mills and grunt the piggeries of "Uncle Jim." Breathe and inhale deeply
ere you reach this castle of Udolpho, and then hold your breath as long
as possible, for Arabia is a long way thence, and the balm of a thousand
flowers is not for sale in that locality. Then away you go over paved,
or planked, or Macadamized roads, out to the cities of the dead, pass
between Lone Mountain and Calvary, and make a straight due west course
for the ocean. Along the way are many things to please and entertain,
especially if an intelligent chaperon accompany you. Your eye will
travel over in every direction the vast territory which Swain, Weaver &
Co. desire to fence in, the little homesteads by the way, Dr. Rowell's
arena castle, and Zeke Wilson's Bleak House in the sand. Splendid road,
ocean air that swells the lungs and strengthens the limbs. Then there's
the Cliff House, perched on the very brink of the ocean, like a castle
by the Rhine, with countless sea-lions rolling their unwieldy bulks on
the rocks within rifle-shot, or plunging into and sculling about in
the foaming waters. Steamers and sailing craft are passing, wild fowl
scream, and sea-lions growl and bark, the waves roll into breakers, foam
and spray, for five miles along the beach, beautiful and grand, and
one feels as if at sea with no rolling motion nor sea-sickness, and the
appetite is whetted by the drive and the breeze, the ocean's presence
wins you into a happy frame, and you can eat one of the best dinners
with the hungry relish of an ostrich. Go to the Cliff House. Go ere the
winds get too fresh, and if you like, you may come back by Mountain Lake
and the Presidio, overlook the Fort, and bow to the Stars and Stripes as
you pass.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, June 25, 1864


William H. Winans made a complaint in the Police Court, yesterday,
against Officer Forner, for assault and battery. From the testimony it
appeared that Forner had had an arrest of two persons and then delivered
them to the care of another officer. While the latter officer was
taking the men to the Station house, the plaintiff went up to one of
the prisoners to speak to him concerning his bail, when, as he alleges,
Forner took him by the collar, pushed him away, and struck him. The
Judge remarked that officers must not go beyond the law in the discharge
of their duties. It was not unfrequently the case that they displayed
abundant zeal concerning arrests that were wholly unjustifiable,
alluding more particularly to their making arrests without a warrant,
on the mere say-so of outside parties. They must either be an actual
witness of the offence or make an arrest by a warrant specially issued
for the purpose. After Forner had delivered his prisoners to another
officer his control over them ceased, and he had no right to exercise
the conduct alleged against him, and it should require him to appear
to-day for sentence.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, June 28, 1864


Lewis P. Ward prefers the following charges against Officer Forner,
and Judge Shepheard has issued subpoenas for the witnesses: Using
unnecessary violence in making an arrest; making the arrest without
authority, (without a warrant and merely upon the say-so of an
interested party); maltreating two private citizens where there was no
call for such conduct on his part; and being off his beat and drinking
in the "Flag" Saloon, when he should have been at his post. The Board of
Police Commissioners will take the matter into consideration on Thursday
afternoon at two o'clock. These charges are of a grave character, and
will receive the strict examination to which their importance entitles

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, June 28, 1864


We do not like it, as far as we have got. We shall probably not fall so
deeply in love with reporting for a San Francisco paper as to make it
impossible ever to wean us from it. There is a powerful saving-clause
for us in the fact that the conservators of public information--the
persons whose positions afford them opportunities not enjoyed by others
to keep themselves posted concerning the important events of the city's
daily life--do not appear to know anything. At the offices and places
of business we have visited in search of information, we have got it in
just the same shape every time, with a promptness and uniformity which
is startling, perhaps, but not gratifying. They all answer and say unto
you, "I don't know." We do not mind that, so much, but we do object to
a man's parading his ignorance with an air of overbearing egotism which
shows you that he is proud of it. True merit is modest, and why should
not true ignorance be? In most cases, the head of the concern is not at
home; but then why not pay better wages and leave men at the counter
who would not be above knowing something? Judging by the frills they
put on--the sad but infallible accompaniment of forty dollars a year and
found--these fellows are satisfied they are not paid enough to make it
an object to know what is going on around them, or to state that their
crop of information has failed, this century, without doing it with an
exaggeration of dignity altogether disproportioned to the importance of
the thing. In Washoe, if a man don't know anything, he will at least go
on and tell you what he don't know, so that you can publish it in
case you do not stumble upon something of more vital interest to the
community, in the course of the day. If a similar course were pursued
here, we might always have something to write about--and occasionally a
column or so left over for next day's issue, perhaps.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, June 29, 1864


Lena Kahn, otherwise known as Mother Kahn, or the Kahn of Tartary, who
is famous in this community for her infatuated partiality for the
Police Court as a place of recreation, was on hand there again yesterday
morning. She was mixed up in a triangular row, the sides of the triangle
being Mr. Oppenheim, Mrs. Oppenheim, and herself. It appeared from the
evidence that she formed the base of the triangle--which is to say, she
was at the bottom of the row, and struck the first blow. Moses Levi,
being sworn, said he was in the neighborhood, and heard Mrs. Oppenheim
scream; knew it was her by the vicious expression she always threw into
her screams; saw the defendant (her husband) go into the Tartar's house
and gobble up the partner of his bosom and his business, and rescue her
from the jaws of destruction (meaning Mrs. Kahn,) and bring her forth to
sport once more amid the _____. At this point the lawyer turned off Mr.
Levi's gas, which seemed to be degenerating into poetry, and asked him
what his occupation was? The Levite said he drove an express wagon. The
lawyer--with that sensitiveness to the slightest infringement of the
truth, which is so becoming to the profession--inquired severely if
he did not sometimes drive the horse also! The wretched witness, thus
detected before the multitude in his deep-laid and subtle prevarication,
hung his head in silence. His evidence could no longer be respected,
and he moved away from the stand with the consciousness written upon his
countenance of how fearful a thing it is to trifle with the scruples
of a lawyer. Mrs. Oppenheim next came forward and gave a portion of her
testimony in damaged English, and the balance in dark and mysterious
German. In the English glimpses of her story it was discernible that
she had innocently trespassed upon the domain of the Khan, and had been
rudely seized upon in such a manner as to make her arm turn blue, (she
turned up her sleeve and showed the Judge,) and the bruise had grown
worse since that day, until at last it was tinged with a ghastly green,
(she turned up her sleeve again for impartial judicial inspection,) and
instantly after receiving this affront, so humiliating to one of gentle
blood, she had been set upon without cause or provocation, and thrown
upon the floor and "licked." This last expression possessed a charm for
Mrs. Oppenheim, that no persuasion of Judge or lawyers could induce
her to forego, even for the sake of bringing her wrongs into a stronger
light, so long as those wrongs, in such an event, must be portrayed in
language less pleasant to her ear. She said the Khan had licked her,
and she stuck to it and reiterated with unflinching firmness. Becoming
confused by repeated assaults from the lawyers in the way of badgering
questions, which her wavering senses could no longer comprehend, she
relapsed at last into hopeless German again, and retired within the
lines. Mr. Oppenheim then came forward and remained under fire for
fifteen minutes, during which time he made it as plain as the disabled
condition of his English would permit him to do, that he was not in
anywise to blame, at any rate; that his wife went out after a warrant
for the arrest of the Kahn; that she stopped to "make it up" with the
Kahn, and the redoubtable Kahn tackled her; that he was dry-nursing the
baby at the time, and when he heard his wife scream, he suspected, with
a sagacity which did him credit, that she wouldn't have "hollered 'dout
dere vas someding de matter;" therefore he piled the child up in a
corner remote from danger, and moved upon the works of the Tartar; she
had waltzed into the wife and finished her, and was already on picket
duty, waiting for the husband, and when he came she smacked him over
the head a couple of times with the deadly bludgeon she uses to
elevate linen to the clothes-line with; and then, stimulated by this
encouragement, he started to the Police Office to get out a warrant for
the arrest of the victorious army, but the victorious army, always on
the alert, was there ahead of him, and he now stood in the presence of
the Court in the humiliating position of a man who had aspired to be
plaintiff, but overcome by strategy, had sunk to the grade of defendant.
At this point his mind wandered, his vivacious tongue grew thick with
mushy German syllables, and the last of the Oppenheims sank to rest at
the feet of justice. We had done less than our duty had we allowed this
most important trial--freighted, as it was, with matters of the last
importance to every member of this community, and every conscientious,
law-abiding man and woman upon whom the sun of civilization shines
to-day--to be given to the world in the columns, with no more
elaboration than the customary "Benjamin Oppenheim, assault and battery,
dismissed; Lena Oppenheim and Fredrika Kahn, held to answer." We
thought, at first, of starting in that way, under the head of "Police
Court," but a second glance at the case showed us that it was one of
a most serious and extraordinary nature, and ought to be put in such
a shape that the public could give to it that grave and deliberate
consideration which its magnitude entitled it to.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 1, 1864


An old two-story, sheet-iron, pioneer, fire-proof house, got loose
from her moorings last night, and drifted down Sutter street, toward
Montgomery. We are not informed as to where she came from or where she
was going to--she had halted near Montgomery street, and appeared to
be studying about it. If one might judge from the expression that hung
about her dilapidated front and desolate window, she was thoroughly
demoralized when she stopped there, and sorry she ever started. Is there
no law against houses loafing around the public streets at midnight?

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 1, 1864


The pupils of the Public Schools assembled in strong force at the
Metropolitan Theatre yesterday afternoon, to rehearse their portion of
the Fourth of July ceremonies. The dress-circle was a swarming hive of
small boys in an advanced state of holiday jollity, and the parquet was
filled with young girls impatient for the performance to begin. There
were but fourteen benches left vacant in the pit, and three in the dress
circle. At the call to order by Mr. Elliott, a solemn silence succeeded
the buzzing that had prevailed all over the house. He announced that one
School was still absent, but it was too late to wait for its arrival.
The pupils, led by the orchestra, then sang a beautiful chant--"The
Lord's Prayer"--the girls doing the best service, the boys taking only a
moderate amount of interest in it. However, the boys came out strong
on the next chorus--"The Battle Cry of Freedom." Without prompting,
the voices of the children broke forth with one accord the moment the
orchestra had finished playing the symphony, which was pretty good proof
that the pupils of all the Schools are accustomed to strict discipline.
The next song--"The Union"--was sung with thrilling effect, and was
entered into by both boys and girls, with a spirit which showed that it
was a favorite with them. It deserved to be, for it had more music in
it than any tune which had preceded it. "Oh, Wrap the Flag Around Me,
Boys," was sung by the girls, and the boys joined in the chorus. It is
a lugubrious ditty, and sadness oozed from its every pore. There was
a pardonable lack of enthusiasm evinced in its execution. "America"
(applause from the boys) was sung next, with extraordinary vim. The
exercises were closed with this hymn, and the Schools then left the
theatre and departed for home. Just as the rear rank was passing out
at the door, the missing School--the lost tribe--came filing down the
street, moved two abreast into the theatre without halting, and
took possession of the stage. It proved to be the Rincon School, so
distinguished for the numerous promotions from its ranks to the High
School. The large stage was almost filled by the newcomers, and had they
arrived sooner there would not have been a vacant seat in the house.
The lost tribe rehearsed the songs in regular order, just as their
predecessors had done, and did it in an entirely creditable manner,
after which they marched in procession up Montgomery to Market street.
Even if everything else fails on the Fourth, we are satisfied that
the Public Schools can be depended on to carry out their part of the
programme faithfully and in the best possible style. The Schools will
assemble at the Metropolitan Theatre about noon on the Fourth, where,
in addition to their singing, the following exercises may be expected:
Music, by the band; Prayer, by the Rev. Mr. Kittredge; Reading of the
Declaration of Independence, by W. H. L. Barnes; Poem, by Mr. Bowman;
Oration, by the Rev. H. W. Bellows.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 1, 1864


We conversed yesterday with a stranger, who had suffered from a game
familiar to some San Franciscans, but unknown in his section of the
country. He was going home late at night, when a sociable young man,
standing alone on the sidewalk, bade him good evening in a friendly way,
and asked him to take a drink, with a fascination of manner which he
could not resist. They went into Johnson's saloon, on Pike street,
but instead of paying promptly for the drinks, the sociable young man
proposed to throw the dice for them, which was done, and the stranger
who was a merchant, from the country, lost. Euchre was then proposed,
and two disinterested spectators, entirely unknown to the sociable young
man--as he said--were invited to join the game, and did so. Shortly
afterwards, good hands were discovered to be plenty around the board,
and it was proposed to bet on them, and turn the game into poker. The
merchant held four kings, and he called a ten dollar bet; but the luck
that sociable young man had was astonishing--he held four aces! This
made the merchant suspicious--he says and it was a pity his sagacity was
not still more extraordinary--it was a pity it did not warn him that it
was time to quit that crowd. But it had no such effect; the sociable man
showed him a check on Wells, Fargo &; Co., and he thought it was safe to
"stake" him; therefore he staked his friend, and continued to stake him,
and his friend played and lost, and continued to play and lose, until
one hundred and ninety dollars were gone, and he nothing more left
wherewith to stake him. The merchant complained to the Police,
yesterday, and officer McCormick hunted up the destroyer of his peace
and the buster of his fortune, and arrested him. He gave his name as
Wellington, but the Police have known him well heretofore as "Injun
Ned;" he told the merchant his name was J. G. Whittaker. Wellington
Whittaker deserves to be severely punished, but perhaps the merchant
ought to be allowed to go free, as this was his first offence in being
so criminally green.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 1, 1864


Lewis P. Ward brought several charges against Policeman Forner,
yesterday, before the Board of Police Commissioners. One was for
maltreating two citizens who were not under arrest, and whom he had
no business to lay his hands on anyhow. This charge was summarily
dismissed; the offence involved being one of no consequence, as anyone
can see. Still, the Board might have thought the officer sufficiently
punished for it already in the Police Court, where he was fined five
dollars, which he paid in green-backs, if he is a loyal man. The second
charge was for arresting a man without any authority for doing it. This
was also dismissed--for good and sufficient reasons, maybe--but anyhow
it was dismissed. The third charge against Officer Forner was for being
off his beat when he should have been on it, instead of drinking in the
"Flag" saloon. Several witnesses substantiated this charge, and we are
informed that no evidence was produced against it. The Commissioners
took it into consideration, and will render a decision in the matter
shortly, perhaps.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 4, 1864


The only drawback there is to the following original novelette, is, that
it contains nothing but truth, and must, therefore, be void of interest
for readers of sensational fiction. The gentleman who stated the case
to us said there was a moral to it, but up to the present moment we
have not been able to find it. There is nothing moral about it. Chapter
I.--About a year ago, a German in the States sent his wife to California
to prepare the way, and get things fixed up ready for him. Chapter
II.--She did it. She fixed things up, considerably. She fell in with
a German who had been sent out here by his wife to prepare the way for
her. Chapter III.--These two fixed everything up in such a way for their
partners at home, that they could not fail to find it interesting to
them whenever they might choose to arrive. The man borrowed all the
money the woman had, and went into business, and the two lived happily
and sinfully together for a season. Chapter IV.--Grand Tableau. The
man's wife arrived unexpectedly in the Golden Age, and busted out the
whole arrangement. Chapter V.--Now at this day the fallen heroine of
this history is stricken with grief and refuses to be comforted; she has
been cruelly turned out of the house by the usurping, lawful wife, and
set adrift upon the wide, wide world, without a rudder. But she doesn't
mind that so much, because she never had any rudder, anyhow. The noble
maiden does mind being adrift, though, rudder or no rudder, because she
has never been used to it. And so, all the day sits she sadly in the
highway, weeping and blowing her nose, and slinging the result on the
startled passers-by, and careless whether she lives or dies, now
that her bruised heart can never know aught but sorrow anymore. Last
Chapter.--She cannot go to law to get her property back, because her
sensitive nature revolts at the thought of giving publicity to her
melancholy story. Neither can she return to her old home and fall at the
feet of the husband of her early love, praying him to forgive, and bless
and board her again, as he was wont to do in happier days; because when
her destroyer shook her, behold he shook her without a cent. Now what is
she to do? She wants to know. We have stated the case, and the thrilling
original novelette is finished, and is not to be continued. But as to
the moral, a rare chance is here offered the public to sift around and
find it. We failed, in consequence of the very immoral character of the
whole proceeding. Perhaps the best moral would be for the woman to go to
work with renewed energy, and fix things, and get ready over again for
her husband.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 6, 1864


GRAND PROCESSION, FIREWORKS, ETC.--In point of magnificence, enthusiasm,
crowds, noise, wind and dust, the Fourth was the most remarkable day San
Francisco has ever seen. The National salute fired at daylight, by the
California Guard, awoke the city, and by eight o'clock in the morning
the sidewalks of all the principal streets were packed with men,
women and children, and remained so until far into the afternoon. All
able-bodied citizens were abroad, all cripples with one sound leg and
a crutch and all invalids who were not ticketed for eternity on that
particular day. The whole city was swathed in a waving drapery of
flags--scarcely a house could be found which lacked this kind of
decoration. The effect was exceedingly lively and beautiful. Of course
Montgomery street excelled in this species of embellishment. To the
spectator beholding it from any point above Pacific street, it was no
longer a street of compactly built houses, but simply a quivering
cloud of gaudy red and white stripes, which shut out from view almost
everything but itself. Some houses were broken out all over with flags,
like small-pox patients; among these were Brannan's Building, the
Occidental Hotel and the Lick House, which displayed flags at every

THE PROCESSION.--The chief feature of the day was the great Procession,
of course, and to the strategic ability and the tireless energy and
industry of Grand Marshal Sheldon, San Francisco is indebted for the
completeness and well ordered character of the splendid spectacle. He
performed the great work assigned him in a manner which entitles him to
the very highest credit.

Toward ten o'clock the streets began to be thronged with platoons,
companies and regiments of schools, soldiers, benevolent associations,
etc., swarming from every point of the compass, and marching with music
and banners toward the general rendezvous, like the gathering hosts of a
mighty army. By eleven the Procession was formed and began to move, and
in half an hour it was drifting past Portsmouth Square, rank after rank,
and column after column, in seemingly countless numbers. Afterwards
(on level ground) it was an hour and twenty minutes in passing a given
point; coming down hill, through Washington street, the time was an hour
and five minutes; therefore the Procession must have been two miles long
at any rate, unless those composing it were remarkably slow walkers;
many adjudged it to be over two and a half miles in length.

GRAND MARSHAL AND AIDS.--The Grand Marshal, in purple sash, studded with
stars, led the van, attended by thirteen Aids, in white and gold...

The military presented a fine appearance, with their handsome uniforms
and brightly burnished arms. They were sufficiently numerous to occupy
thirteen minutes in passing a given point.

A squad of twelve or fifteen little drummer boys, in uniform,
accompanying the Sixth Regiment, attracted a good deal of attention.

In the military part of the procession, borne by the First Regiment,
was a stained and ragged flag, pierced by nine bullet-holes and one
bayonet-thrust, received at the bloody battle of Ball's Bluff. It was
carried by Corporal Wise, who fought under it there.

CIVIL DEPARTMENT.--The civil department of the Procession was headed by
carriages containing the President, Orator, Chaplain, Poet, and Reader
of the Day, foreign Consuls, and foreign and domestic naval and military
guests, in splendid uniforms, as a general thing. Following these came
State, city and county officers, also in carriages.

The Society of California Pioneers and the Eureka Typographical Union
were followed by a number of tradesmen's wagons, tastefully ornamented
and bearing appropriate mottoes and devices.

The San Francisco Fire Department came next, headed by Chief Engineer
Scannell and his Aides...

The Butchers' Union Association came next, headed by a wagon containing
a huge living buffalo, and followed by several gaily caparisoned fat
cattle; following these was a soldierly platoon of infantry butchers,
armed with cleavers, who were observed to obey the solitary command
to "Shoulder arms!" with military precision and promptness. They
were followed by about twenty open wagons, filled with members of the
fraternity. One of these wagons bore the motto, "We Kill to Cure!"

After a glue factory wagon, bearing the motto, "We stick fast to the
Union," came seven more butchers' wagons, followed by a fine array of
mounted butchers, riding three abreast. The uniform of the fraternity
was check shirts and black pantaloons, and it was distinguished in the
civil department of the Procession for its exceeding neatness.

The Cartmen's Union Association, riding two abreast, in blue shirts
and black pants--a stalwart, fine looking body of men, came next in the
Procession, and rode with the Draymen and Teamsters' Associations.
A fine regiment or so of cavalry might be constructed out of these

SCHOOLS.--One of the most notable features of the great Procession was
the public schools. The boys are all accustomed to military discipline,
and they marched along with the order and decorum of old soldiers. Each
school had its uniform, its own private music, and its multitude of
flags and banners, and in the matter of numbers and general magnificence
they did not fall much behind the Army of California at the other end of
the Procession. There were twelve schools in the ranks...

Some of the mottoes inscribed upon the banners borne by the School
children were as follows: "Knowledge is Power;" a globe, with the
device, "We move the World;" "Children of the Union;" "We are Coming,
Father Abraham;" "Our Public Schools, the Lever that moves the
World--Give us more Leverage!" The Mason Street School carried silken
banners, upon which were painted the arms of all the States. The boys of
Rincon School, three hundred in number, were dressed in a sort of naval
uniform, (two gold bands around their caps, and a gold stripe down
the leg of their pants,) and each boy carried a flag. The girls of the
Rincon School, numbering three hundred also, left the School in eight
large furniture cars, but we saw only a few of these cars in the
Procession. A pretty little girl in the first car was gorgeously
costumed as the Goddess of Liberty. A beautiful banner, presented to
the School early in the morning, was carried by the girls, and bore
the suggestive inscription, "Our Country's Hope," (in case she becomes
depopulated by the war, probably.)

BENEVOLENT SOCIETIES.--In uniform, and carrying flags and banners, were
a long array of Benevolent and Protective Associations...

After these followed numberless carriages, containing citizens, and in
their wake came the rear guard of citizens on foot, which finished up
the almost interminable Procession.

AT THE THEATRE.--After marching through the several streets marked down
for it in the programme, the Procession filed down Montgomery street,
and disbanded in the vicinity of the Metropolitan Theatre, where the
concluding ceremonies of the celebration were to take place.

The Schools were admitted to the theatre first, and a sufficient number
were taken from the multitude of citizens outside to fill up the room
left vacant--which was not much, of course. The place was so densely
packed that we could not find comfortable standing or breathing room,
and left, taking it for granted that the following programme would be
carried out all the same, and just as well as if we remained:

National Airs by the Bands.

Chant, the Lord's Prayer, by the Children of the Public Schools.

Prayer, by the Rev. Mr. Kittredge.

Reading of the Declaration of Independence, by W. H. L. Barnes, Esq.

"The Battle-Cry of Freedom," by the Children of the Public Schools.

Poem, by J. F. Bowman.

"The Union," by Children of the Public Schools.

Oration, by the Rev. H. W. Bellows.

"O wrap the flag around me, boys," by Children.

"America," by the Children.


THE FIREWORKS.--The huge framework for the pyrotechnic display was set
up at the corner of Fifth and Harrison streets, and by the time the
first rocket was discharged, every vacant foot of ground for many a
square around was closely crowded with people. There could not have
been less than fifteen thousand persons stretching their necks in that
vicinity for a glimpse of the show, and certainly not more than thirteen
thousand of them failed to see it. The spot was so well chosen, on such
nice level ground, that if your stature were six feet one, a trifling
dwarf with a plug hat on could step before you and shut you out from the
exhibition, as if you were stricken with a sudden blindness. Carriages,
which no man might hope to see through, were apt to drive along and stop
just ahead of you, at the most interesting moment, and if you changed
your position men would obstruct your vision by climbing on each others'
shoulders. The grand discharges of rockets, however, and their bursting
spray of many-colored sparks, were visible to all, after they had
reached a tremendous altitude, and these gave pleasure and brought
solace to many a sorrowing heart behind many an untransparent vehicle.
Still we know that the fireworks on the night of the Fourth, mottoes,
temples, stars, triangles, Catherine wheels, towers, pyramids, and,
in fact, every department of the exhibition, formed by far the most
magnificent spectacle of the kind ever witnessed on the Pacific coast.
The reason why we know it is, that that infamous, endless, Irish giant,
at Gilbert's Museum, stood exactly in front of us the whole evening, and
he said so, and a terrific cannonade of fire crackers, kept up all night
long, finished the festivities of this memorable Fourth of July in San

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 8, 1864


As a general thing, when we visit the City Prison late at night, we
find one or two drunken vagabonds raving and cursing in the cells, and
sending out a pestilent odor of bad whiskey with every execration. Last
night the case was different. Mrs. Ann Holland was there, very drunk,
and very musical; her gin was passing off in steaming gas, to the tune
of "I'll hang my harp on a willow tree," and she appeared to be enjoying
it considerably. The effect was very cheerful in a place so accustomed
to powerful swearing and mute wretchedness. Mrs. Holland's music was
touchingly plaintive and beautiful, too; but then it smelled bad.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 8, 1864


Isaac Hingman has been bigamized. He was arrested for it yesterday, by
Officer W. P. Brown, on a complaint sworn to by his most recent wife,
that he has a much more former wife now living in another part of the
State. The wife that makes the complaint, and who drew a blank, in the
eye of the law, in the husband lottery, married the prisoner on the 24th
of June, in this city. A man is not allowed to have a wife lying around
loose in every county of California, as Isaac may possibly find to his
cost before he gets through with this case. He might as well make up his
mind to shed one of these women.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 8,1864


We have mentioned elsewhere in our present issue the arrest of Isaac
Hingman, on a charge of bigamy. The woman he married last, went to the
station-house last night to see him. She says she worked for two years
in lager beer cellars here, and, during that time, had saved six hundred
and fifty dollars. Hingman got this from her. He said he was going down
on the Colorado to open a Saloon, and she was to go with him. They
were to leave to-day on a schooner, and he took her stove, her beds and
bedding, and all her clothing, and put them on board the vessel. He told
her he had been living with a woman at Auburn, and he would have to send
her some money in order to get rid of her and her three children. The
new wife gave him one hundred and thirty dollars for this purpose, and
he went off and telegraphed his Auburn family to come down and go to
the Colorado with him instead. The duped beer girl got the answering
dispatch sent by the Auburn wife, in which she acceded to the proposal,
and said she would arrive by the boat last night. Sergeant Evrard, of
the Police, saw the dispatch. The woman said Hingman told her, in the
station-house, that the lucky Auburn woman was his lawful wife. Officer
Evrard sent a policeman, disguised, to wait for the up-country wife
at the Sheba Saloon, last night, and find out what he could from her
affecting the case. The story of the illegal wife is plausible, and if
it is true, Mr. Hingman ought to be severely dealt with. But not too
severely--we go in for moderation in all things, and, considering all
the circumstances of this case, it might be a questionable application
of power to do more than hang him. To hang him a little while--say
thirty or forty minutes--ought to be about the fair thing, though. He
wants to marry too many people; and he needs treatment that will tend to
check this propensity.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 9, 1864


The ingenuity of the Chinese is beyond calculation. It is asserted that
they have no words or expressions signifying abstract right or wrong.
They appreciate "good" and "bad," but it is only in reference to
business, to finance, to trade, etc. Whatever is successful is good;
whatever fails is bad. So they are not conscience-bound in planning
and perfecting ingenious contrivances for avoiding the tariff on opium,
which is pretty heavy. The attempted swindles appear to have been
mostly, or altogether, attempted by the Coolie passengers--the Chinese
merchants, either from honorable motives or from policy, having dealt
honestly with the Government. But the passengers have reached the brains
of rascality itself, to find means for importing their delicious
drug without paying the duties. To do this has called into action the
inventive genius of brains equal in this respect to any that ever lodged
on the top end of humanity. They have, doubtless, for years smuggled
opium into this port continuously. The officers of Customs at length got
on their track, and the traffic has become unprofitable to the Coolies,
however well it has been paying the officials through the seizures made.
The opium has been found concealed in double jars and brass eggs, as
heretofore described, brought ashore in bands around the body, and by
various other modes. The latest dodge detected was sausages, Bolognas,
as it were, filled with opium; and yesterday we saw a tin can, with a
false bottom about one third the distance from the base, the lower third
of the can filled with opium, the rest with oil. John himself will have
to be opened next--he is undoubtedly full of it.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 9, 1864


While we were lounging in the City Jail yesterday afternoon, Officer
Cook brought in a little girl, not more than seven or eight years old,
whom he had arrested for stealing twenty-five dollars from a man in an
auction-room the day before. She gave her name as Amelia Brown Wascus,
and seemed to be a half breed Indian or negro--probably the latter,
if one may judge by the kind of taste she displayed in laying out the
stolen money, for she had spent a portion of it in the purchase of a
toy hand organ with limited accomplishments, and those of a marked
contraband tint--the same being indexed on the back of the plaything
as "Buffalo Gals," and "My Pretty Yaller Gals." She had expended about
fifteen dollars for various trinkets, and the balance of the money had
been recovered by Officer Cook from the child's mother. Amelia cried
bitterly all the time she was in the station-house, but she said
nothing, and appealed for no compassion save in the pleading eloquence
of her tears. She was taken to the Industrial School, and her
accomplice--for it seems she had one of about her own age and sex will
follow her if she can be found

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 9, 1864


Judges Field and Hoffman were occupied all day yesterday in hearing
evidence in the case of Captain Josiah N. Knowles, of the ship Charger,
indicted for manslaughter, in not stopping to pick up a sailor named
Swansea, who fell from the royal yard arm of that ship, on the 1st
of last April, during a voyage from Boston to San Francisco. From the
testimony, it would appear that there was a heavy sea on at the time,
and a stiff breeze blowing, and consequently it would not have been safe
to send a boat after the man, while at the same time it would have been
useless to shorten sail and put the ship about, because of the great
length of time that would necessarily be consumed in the operation.
Swansea fell one hundred and twenty feet, and one witness--the second
officer of the ship thought he struck the "main channels" in his
descent, and was a dead man when he reached the water. The Charger was
on a quick trip, and was making over ten knots an hour at the time
of the accident. The evidence was almost completed yesterday, and the
arguments of counsel will be commenced to-day.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 9, 1864


A bold robbery was attempted, last evening, in the second story of
the premises owned by Janson, Bond & Co., corner of Battery and Pine
streets, occupied as a fancy goods importing house, but which, owing
to the vigilance of one of the clerks who slept in the store, and the
promptitude of Special Officer Sweeney in answering his alarm, was
frustrated. About half-past eleven, as the clerk was about retiring, he
heard a suspicious noise and raised the cry of "Watch!" Officer Sweeney
immediately ran in the direction, and met a man running hastily away. He
asked him what the matter was, and he replied "Somebody has lost a
watch round the corner." Sweeney ordered him to stop; in reply he made
a desperate lunge at the officer with a bowie knife. Sweeney then struck
him over the head with his night lantern and brought him to reason. He
was then taken to the station-house, where, on being searched, four gold
watches, three revolvers, a bowie knife, and two bunches of gold rings
were found on his person. He stated his name as William Johnson, and
further that he had accomplices, and the name of one was McCarty.
Officers Minson and Greenwood then repaired to the scene of the
attempted robbery and thoroughly searched the place. They found on the
sidewalk, just under the window, where it had been let down by Johnson
to his confederates, a bag containing fifteen pistols, five bowie-knives
and two pairs of bullet moulds. Up to a late hour last evening, the
accomplices of Johnson had not been captured. A box containing four
hundred dollars in silver escaped the notice of the robbers. It is
probable this gang is the same that were concerned in the recent
attempted safe robberies. It is somewhat significant, taken in
connection with matters transpiring in the interior of the State, that
the purpose of these scoundrels seemed to be to get hold of all the
arms they could, comparatively ignoring some valuable jewelry, and other
articles, of which they might have possessed themselves.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 10, 1864


The old original Auburn wife of the bigamist Hingman, arrived by the
boat night before last, but her whereabouts were not discovered until
last night, when she was found in one of the up-town hotels, with her
three children, and subpoenaed to appear as a witness in the impending
trial of her husband for bigamy.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 12, 1864


Captain Douglass and Watchman Hager boarded the ship Clara Morse, on
Sunday morning, the moment she arrived, and captured nineteen Chinese
girls, who had been stolen and brought from Hongkong to San Francisco
to be sold. They were a choice lot, and estimated to be worth from one
hundred and fifty to four hundred dollars apiece in this market. They
are shut up for safe-keeping for the present, and we went and took a
look at them yesterday; some of them are almost good-looking, and none
of them are pitted with small pox--a circumstance which we have observed
is very rare among China women. There were even small children among
them--one or two not two years old, perhaps, but the ages of the
majority ranged from fourteen to twenty. We would suggest, just here
that the room where these unfortunates are confined is rather too
close for good health--and besides, the more fresh air that blows on
a Chinaman, the better he smells. The heads of the various Chinese
Companies here have entered into a combination to break up this
importation of Chinese prostitutes, and they are countenanced and
supported in their work by Chief Burke and Judge Shepheard. Now-a-days,
before a ship gets her cables out, the Police board her, seize the girls
and shut them up, under guard, and they are sent back to China as soon
as opportunity offers, at the expense of the Chinese Companies, who also
send an agent along to hunt up the families from whom the poor creatures
have been stolen, and restore to them their lost darlings again. Our
Chinese fellow citizens seem to be acquiring a few good Christian
instincts, at any rate.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 12, 1864


The bigamy case came up in the Police Court yesterday morning, and Judge
Shepheard dismissed it, because the charge could not be substantiated,
inasmuch as the only witnesses to be had were the two alleged wives of
the defendant--or rather, only one, the ephemeral lager-beer wife as
the old original wife, the first location, or the discovery claim on the
matrimonial lead, could not be compelled to testify against her husband,
and thereby also knock the props from under her own good name and her
eternal piece of mind. The injured and deserted relocation now proposes
to have Hingman arrested again and tried on a charge of assault and
battery. This unfortunate woman seems to have been very badly treated,
and it is to be hoped she may get some little soothing satisfaction out
of her assault and battery charge to reconcile her to her failure in the
bigamy matter.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 12, 1864


The case of Captain Knowles, late of the ship Charger, indicted for
manslaughter, in not attempting to rescue a sailor, named Swansea, who
had fallen overboard, was ably argued by Messrs. Hall McAllister and the
District Attorney, yesterday, and a verdict returned by the jury of "Not
guilty as charged in the indictment." The jury were charged that if they
had any doubt of the man's having been alive after he struck the water,
to give the prisoner the benefit of the doubt. That little doubt saved
Captain Knowles, as, in the opinion of at least one member of the jury,
he was guilty of a criminal indifference as to the fate of his lost
sailor. He seized the wheel after the steersman had begun to put the
ship about, put her on her course again, and then coolly marched down to
finish his breakfast. He did not even throw over a chicken-coop for the
poor fellow to rest upon while he watched the disappearing ship with his
despairing eyes. The prisoner has been discharged from custody, and the
witnesses also, who have been drearily awaiting the trial of the case,
in prison, for the past two months.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 12, 1864


If there is anything more absurd than the general average of Police
Court testimony, we do not know what it is. Witnesses stand up here,
every day, and swear to the most extravagant propositions with an
easy indifference to consequences in the next world that is altogether
refreshing. Yesterday--under oath--a witness said that while he was
holding the prisoner at the bar so that he could not break loose, the
prisoner "pushed my wife with his hand--so--tried to push her over and
kill her!" There was no evidence to show that the prisoner had anything
against the woman, or was bothering himself about anything but his
scuffle with her husband. Yet the witness surmised that he had the
purpose hidden away in his mind somewhere to take her life, and he stood
right up to the rack and swore to it; and swore also that he tried to
turn this noble Dutchwoman into a corpse, by the simple act of pushing
her over. That same woman might be pushed over the Yo Semite Falls
without being killed by it, although it stands to reason that if she
struck fair and bounced, it would probably shake her up some.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 14, 1864


Yesterday morning, a horse and cart were carelessly left unhitched and
unwatched in Dupont street. The horse, being of the Spanish persuasion
and not to be depended on, finally got tired standing idle, and ran
away. He ran into Berry street, ran half a square and upset the cart,
and fell, helplessly entangled in the harness. The vehicle was somewhat
damaged, but two or three new wheels, some fresh sides, and a new
bottom, will make it all right again. Considering the fact that little
short narrow Berry street contains as many small children as all the
balance of San Francisco put together, it is strange the frantic horse
did not hash up a dozen or two of them in his reckless career. They all
escaped, however, by the singular accident of being out of the way at
the time, and they visited the wreck in countless swarms, after the
disaster, and examined it with unspeakable satisfaction. The driver is
a man of extraordinary intellect and mature judgment--he set his cart on
its legs again as well as he could, and then whipped his horse until it
was easy to see that the poor brute began to comprehend that something
was up, though it is questionable whether he has yet cyphered out what
that something was, or not. The driver, as we said before, was not in
his wagon at the time of the accident, which accounts for the misfortune
of his not being hurt in the least.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 14, 1864


Anna Jakes, drunk and disorderly, but excessively cheerful, made her
first appearance in the City Prison last night, and made the dreary
vaults ring with music. It was of the distorted, hifalutin kind, and
she evidently considered herself an opera sharp of some consequence.
Her idea was that "Whee-heeping sad and lo-honely" was not calculated
to bring this cruel war to a close shortly, and she delivered herself
of that idea under many difficulties; because, in the first place, Mary
Kane, an old offender, was cursing like a trooper in a neighboring cell;
and secondly, a man in another apartment who wanted to sleep, and
who did not admire anybody's music, and especially Anna Jakes',
kept inquiring, "Will you dry up that infernal yowling, you
heifer?"--swinging a hefty oath at her occasionally--and so the cruel
war music was so fused and blended with blasphemy in a higher key, and
discouraging comments in a lower, that the pleasurable effect of it was
destroyed, and the argument and the moral utterly lost. Anna finally
fell to singing and dancing both, with a spirit that promised to last
till morning, and Mary Kane and the weary man got disgusted and withdrew
from the contest. Anna Jakes says she is a highly respectable young
married lady, with a husband in the Boise country; that she has been
sumptuously reared and expensively educated; that her impulses are good
and her instincts refined; that she taught school a long time in the
city of New York, and is an accomplished musician; and finally, that her
sister got married last Sunday night, and she got drunk to do honor to
the occasion--and with a persistency that is a credit to one of such
small experience, she has been on a terrific bender ever since. She will
probably let herself out on the cruel war for Judge Shepheard, in the
Police Court, this morning.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 14, 1864


Yesterday, General McDowell, accompanied by his Staff and many military
officers, officials and civilians, made a tour of inspection of the
harbor defences about the Bay of San Francisco. Many gentlemen had been
invited to be of the party, and many answered by their presence. Besides
Major General McDowell and Staff, were Brigadier General Wright and
Staff, Brigadier-General Mason, Captain Van Vost, Provost Marshal, and
other officers of the Army; Commander Woodworth of the Navy; Governor
Low and suite; Mr. Redding, Secretary of State; Judges Field and
Hoffman, of the U.S. Court; the Collector of the Port, Colonel James;
Mr. Farwell, Naval officer; Dr. McLean, Surveyor of the Port; Captain
Chenery, Navy Agent; Mayor Coon; Postmaster Perkins; Hon. Mr. Benton,
Judge Lake, General Allen, General Carpenter, Wm. T. Coleman, and many
other citizens whose names are not just now recollected, and several
members of the Press, last but not least, always around where items are
to be picked up, shells to be exploded, or corks to be drawn. A little
after nine o'clock the "Goliah" left Broadway wharf with her precious
freight. We could not help reflecting, should she blow up or sink,
what a suit with bright buttons Neptune might wear, and how Army,
Navy, Executive, Judiciary, Customs, Municipal and Civil Services would
suffer. Away went the pleasant company, steaming down the Bay towards
Fort Point. The company--those not before acquainted--were introduced to
General McDowell, and each and all seemed delighted with his frank and
genial manner, his quietly social disposition, his soldierly appearance
and bearing, and the facility with which he at once put every one at

FORT POINT.--At the Fort he was received with his appropriate salute.
The different parts of the fortifications were inspected by the General
and his guests. To the eye of a civilian, the works and their warlike
appliances appeared formidable and in excellent condition for service.
There was but one exception. From the barbette, some shell practice
was had, the target being on the opposite shore, at Lime Point. But the
fuses proved imperfect, the shells exploding almost immediately upon
starting on their journey. This of course will be at once remedied.
After the shelling, the troops were drawn up within the Fort and
were reviewed by General McDowell and Governor Low; the Band playing
appropriate music. The officer of the day in command of the troops, is
a gentleman who won his commission by meritorious service in eleven
battles at the East. We regret that we have not his name. The party then
returned to the steamer and started across the Bay towards that famous
spot of which all have heard not a little for years past--

LIME POINT.--The steamer ran close along the northern shore for a
considerable distance, allowing an excellent opportunity for judging of
the superior qualities the formation affords for a strong fortification.
It can readily be transformed into a second Gibraltar. The position is
needed by Government, which should take it, and leave the consideration
of pay to the future. Next the steamer was headed up the Bay, and the
company invited below to partake of a lunch. That this interesting
incident was all that could be desired will appear evident by saying
that it was prepared at the "Occidental," and that Leland himself was
present to see that chicken salad and champagne were properly dispensed.
Soon the steamer reached the wharf at

ANGELS' ISLAND.--Here another salute greeted the General, who, with his
guests, inspected the fortifications there fast growing into formidable
proportions and condition. The little valley lying between the Point at
the entrance of Raccoon Straits, on which is a battery destined to guard
that passage, and the high point to the south, where there is another
new work, nearly ready for use, bears the appearance of a pleasant
little village, with white houses and fixings, indicative of officers'
families, soldiers' barracks, and domestic life. From this abode of the
Angels the company proceeded through Raccoon Straits--beautiful sheet of
water--around Angels' Island, and as they were passing the eastern
end, all of a sudden found themselves saluted by scores of white
handkerchiefs on shore, which was answered in kind, and with splendid
music by the fine band of the Ninth infantry. A picnic party were on
shore, and gave this very pleasing incident to the excursion. Passing
the Point, the company had an opportunity to view the preparations for
the battery there, apparently nearly ready for mounting its guns and
then steamed across, and landed at

ALCATRACES, under a thundering salute from the southern batteries. A
general examination of the whole Island and its defences followed; then
a partaking of the hospitalities of Capt. Winder, Commandant of the
Post, and shell practice from the northwestern battery. The shells
here were in better condition, and the practice more satisfactory. The
reported number of guns on the Island now, and to be, differs, ranging
from ninety to one hundred and eighty. The exact number is not material.
There are enough to knock any fleet that can ever come within reach into
splinters. Leaving Alcatraces, after an inspection of the forces there,
with another salute, the steamer's prow was pointed toward Yerba Buena
Island--a look was had, while passing, at the positions yet to be
fortified--and she passed up the Bay to the mouth of Mission Creek,
past the Aquila--of which ship some of our readers have heard
occasionally--and then back along the city front, the band playing
national and other airs, to Broadway wharf, the place of starting. The
General knows whether the inspection was satisfactory in a military
light. We do not. But it may be said that the trip was exceedingly
pleasant and satisfactory to all the guests of the gallant soldier to
whose courtesy they were indebted for the delightful excursion.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 16, 1864


Yesterday noon, Sansome street was witness of one of those feats so
common to New York city, among the butcher boys, of racing through the
public streets. The driver of Clark's furniture and Express wagon and
some other Expressman, getting their mettle up as to the relative speed
of their respective plugs, let out, both laying on the whip plentifully,
until they overtook Crosky's grocery wagon, which Clark's vehicle (No.
2,859) unceremoniously knocked into "pi," landing driver, groceries and
other Sundries in the street. These outrages are becoming too frequent
in our thickly-populated streets, and need the strict attention of
our city authorities. Eye-witnesses to this race at full speed up
the railroad track, freely expressed themselves that if any ladies or
children had been unfortunate enough to be on the street at the time,
nothing could have saved them from being ridden down.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 16, 1864


On Thursday evening, officers John Conway and King had their attention
attracted by the crying of a child at the Catholic Orphan Asylum door;
where, upon examination, they discovered an infant, apparently but a
few days old, wrapped up in a shawl. It was delivered to the care of the
benevolent Sisters at the Institution. It appeared to be a good enough
baby--nothing the matter with it--and it has been unaccountable to all
who have heard of the circumstance, what the owner wanted to throw it
away for.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 16, 1864


And he fetched his things with him.--John Smith was brought into the
city prison last night, by Officers Conway and Minson, so limbered up
with whiskey that you might have hung him on a fence like a wet
shirt. His battered slouch-hat was jammed down over his eyes like an
extinguisher; his shirt-bosom (which was not clean, at all,) was spread
open, displaying his hair trunk beneath; his coat was old, and short
waisted, and fringed at the edges, and exploded at the elbows like a
blooming cotton-boll, and its collar was turned up, so that one could
see by the darker color it exposed, that the garment had known better
days, when it was not so yellow, and sunburnt, and freckled with grease
spots, as it was now; it might have hung about its owner symmetrically
and gracefully, too, in those days, but now it had a general hitch
upward, in the back, as if it were climbing him; his pantaloons were of
coarse duck, very much soiled, and as full of wrinkles as if they
had been made of pickled tripe; his boots were not blacked, and they
probably never had been; the subject's face was that of a man of forty,
with the sun of an invincible good nature shining dimly through the
cloud of dirt that enveloped it. The officers held John up in a warped
and tangled attitude, like a pair of tongs struck by lightning, and
searched him, and the result was as follows: Two slabs of old cheese; a
double handful of various kinds of crackers; seven peaches; a box of lip
salve, bearing marks of great age; an onion; two dollars and sixty-five
cents, in two purses, (the odd money being considered as circumstantial
evidence that the defendant had been drinking beer at a five-cent house;
) a soiled handkerchief; a fine-tooth comb; also one of coarser pattern;
a cucumber pickle, in an imperfect state of preservation; a leather
string; an eye-glass, such as prospectors use; one buckskin glove; a
printed ballad, "Call me pet names;" an apple; part of a dried herring;
a copy of the Boston Weekly Journal, and copies of several San Francisco
papers; and in each and every pocket he had two or three chunks of
tobacco, and also one in his mouth of such remarkable size as to render
his articulation confused and uncertain. We have purposely given this
prisoner a fictitious name, out of the consideration we feel for him as
a man of noble literary instincts, suffering under temporary misfortune.
He said he always read the papers before he got drunk; go thou and
do likewise. Our literary friend gathered up his grocery store and
staggered contentedly into a cell; but if there is any virtue in the
boasted power of the press, he shall stagger out again to-day, a free

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 17, 1864


A visit to the County Prison, in Broadway above Kearny street, will
satisfy almost any reasonable person that there are worse hardships
in life than being immured in those walls. It is a substantial-looking
place, but not a particularly dreary one, being as neat and clean as a
parlor in its every department. There are two long rows of cells on
the main floor--thirty-one, altogether--disposed on each side of an
alley-way, built of the best quality of brick, imported from Boston, and
laid in cement, which is so hard that a nail could not be driven into
it; each cell has a thick iron door with a wicket in its centre for the
admission of air and light, and a narrow aperture in the opposite wall
for the same purpose; these cells are just about the size and have the
general appearance of a gentleman's state room on a steamboat, but are
rather more comfortable than those dens are sometimes; a two-story bunk,
a slop-bucket and a sort of table are the principal furniture; the walls
inside are white-washed, and the floors kept neat and clean by frequent
scrubbing; on Wednesdays and Saturdays the prisoners are provided with
buckets of water for general bathing and clothes-washing purposes, and
they are required to keep themselves and their premises clean at all
times; on Tuesdays and Fridays they clean up their cells and scrub the
floors thereof. In one of these rows of cells it is pitch dark when the
doors are shut, but in the other row it is very light when the wickets
are open. From the number of books and newspapers lying on the bunks, it
is easy to believe that a vast amount of reading is done in the County
Prison; and smoking too, we presume, because, although the rules forbid
the introduction of spirituous liquors, wine, or beer into the jail,
nothing is said about tobacco. Most of the occupants of the light cells
were lying on the bunks reading, and some of those in the dark ones were
standing up at the wickets similarly employed. "Sick Jimmy," or James
Rodgers, who was found guilty of manslaughter a day or two ago, in
killing Foster, has been permitted by Sheriff Davis to occupy one of the
light cells, on account of his ill health. He says his quarters would
be immensely comfortable if one didn't mind the irksomeness of the
confinement. We could hear the prisoners laughing and talking in the
cells, but they are prohibited from making much noise or talking from
one cell to another. There are three iron cells standing isolated in the
yard, in which a batch of Chinamen wear the time away in smoking
opium two hours a day and sleeping the other twenty-two. The kitchen
department is roomy and neat, and the heavy tragedy work in it is done
by "trusties," or prisoners detailed from time to time for that duty. Up
stairs are the cells for women; two of these are dark, iron cells, for
females confined for high crimes. The others are simply well lighted and
ventilated wooden rooms, such as the better class of citizens over in
Washoe used to occupy a few years ago, when the common people lived in
tents. There is nothing gorgeous about these wooden cells, but plenty
of light and whitewashing make them look altogether cheerful. Mesdames
O'Reefe, McCarty, Mary Holt and "Gentle Julia," (Julia Jennings,) are
the most noted ladies in this department. Prison-keeper Clark says the
quiet, smiling, pious looking Mrs. McCarty is just the boss thief of
San Francisco, and the misnamed "Gentle Julia" is harder to manage, and
gives him more trouble than all the balance of the tribe put together.
She uses "awful" language, and a good deal of it, the same being against
the rule. Mrs. McCarty dresses neatly, reclines languidly on a striped
mattress, smiles sweetly at vacancy, and labors at her "crochet-work"
with the serene indifference of a princess. The four ladies we have
mentioned are unquestionably stuck after the County Prison; they reside
there most of the time, coming out occasionally for a week to steal
something, or get on a bender, and going back again as soon as they
can prove that they have accomplished their mission. A lady warden
will shortly be placed in charge of the women's department here, in
accordance with an act of the last Legislature, and we feel able to
predict that Gentle Julia will make it mighty warm for her. Most of the
cells, above and below, are occupied, and it is proposed to put another
story on the jail at no distant day. We have no suggestions to report
concerning the County Jail. We are of the opinion that it is all right,
and doing well.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 17, 1864


Officer Forner arrested and brought into the City Prison, at noon
yesterday, a wanderer named Patrick O'Hara, who had been sleeping in the
sand-hills all night and tramping dreamily about the wharves all day,
with a bag containing nearly seven hundred dollars in gold sticking
suggestively out of his coat pocket. He looked a little wild out of his
eyes, and did not talk or act as if he knew exactly what he was about.
He objected to staying in the Jail, and he was averse to leaving it
without his money, and so he was locked up for the present safety and
well-being of both. He begged hard for his worshipped treasure, and
there were pathos and moving eloquence in the poor fellow's story of
the weary months of toil and privation it had cost him to gather it
together. He said he had been working for a Mr. Woodworth on a ranch
near Petaluma, and they set two men to watching him, and when he found
it out he wouldn't stay there any longer, but packed up and came down
here on the boat night before last. He also said they had given him an
order on Mr. Woodworth here for forty dollars, for a month's work, but
when he got on the boat he found it was dated "1833," and he threw it
overboard. He brought a carpet-sack with him, and left it at some hotel,
but he can't find the place again. He says he wants to go and stay a
while with some priest--and if he can get a chance of that kind, he
had better take it and keep away from the wharves and the sand-hills;
otherwise somebody will "go through him" the first thing he knows.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 17, 1864


Two children, a boy fourteen years old, and his sister, aged sixteen,
were brought before the Police Court yesterday, charged with stealing,
but the hearing of the case, although begun, was not finished. Judge
Shepheard, whose official dealing with ancient criminals has not yet
hardened his heart against the promptings of pity for misguided youth,
said he would examine the prisoners at his chambers, to the end that he
might only sentence them to the Industrial School if it were possible,
and thus save them from the shame and the lasting stigma of imprisonment
in a felon's cell for their crime. He said there was crime enough in the
land, without driving children to its commission by heaping infamy and
disgrace upon them for their first transgression of the law. He was
right: it is better to save than to destroy, and that justice is most
righteous which is tempered by mercy.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 19, 1864


Mrs. Catherine Moran was arraigned before Judge Cowles yesterday, on a
charge of assault with an axe upon Mrs. Eliza Markee, with intent to do
bodily injury. A physician testified that there were contused wounds
on plaintiff's head, and also a cut through the scalp, which bled
profusely. The fuss was all about a child, and that is the strangest
part about it--as if, in a city so crowded with them as San Francisco,
it were worth while to be particular as to the fate of a child or two.
However, mothers appear to go more by instinct than political economy in
matters of this kind. Mrs. Markee testified that she heard war going
on among the children, and she rushed down into the yard and found
her Johnny sitting on the stoop, building a toy wagon, and Mrs. Moran
standing over him with an axe, threatening to split his head open.
She asked the defendant not to split her Johnny. The defendant at once
turned upon her, threatening to kill her, and struck her two or three
times with the axe, when she, the plaintiff, grabbed the defendant by
the arms and prevented her from scalping her entirely. Blood was flowing
profusely. Mr. Killdig described the fight pretty much as the plaintiff
had done, and said he parted, or tried to part the combatants, and that
he called upon Mr. Moran to assist him, but that neutral power said the
women had been sour a good while--let them fight it out. Another witness
substantiated the main features of the foregoing testimony, and said the
warriors were all covered with blood, and the children of both, to the
number of many dozens, had fled in disorder and taken refuge under the
house, crying, and saying their mothers were killing each other. Mrs.
Murphy, for the defence, testified as follows: "I was coomun along, an'
Misses Moran says to me, says she, this is the red wood stick she tried
to take me life wid, or wan o' thim other sticks, Missis Murphy, dear,
an' says I, Missis Moran, dairlin',"--Here she was shut off, merely
because the Court did not care about knowing what Mrs. Moran told
her about the fight, and consequently we have nothing further of
this important witness's testimony to offer. The case was continued.
Seriously, instead of a mere ordinary she-fight, this is a fuss of some
consequence, and should not be lightly dealt with. It was an earnest
attempt at manslaughter--or woman-slaughter, at any rate, which is
nearly as bad.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 19, 1864


In the Fourth District Court, yesterday, an order was granted to the
plaintiff in the suit of J. J. Robbins vs. Real del Monte Gold and
Silver Mining Company et al., requiring the defendants to show cause why
they should not be enjoined from selling stock for the collection of an
assessment levied for the purpose of further improving their mine. It
appears that stockholders are becoming dissatisfied with the management
of the concern, and want to see the end of assessments for "further
improvements." It is an idea entertained by some inconsiderate persons,
that a mine should at some period of the world's history begin to pay
its own expenses. Rolling into prosperity on the wheels of assessments
may do for a while, but there's a time when dividends should relieve
the drain on the individual's private resources, and he looks forward
expectantly, but "hope deferred maketh the heart sick," etc.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 20, 1864


Alman Glasby, (or Gillespie,) one of the Placerville stage-robbers, was
brought up from San Jose yesterday by Sheriff Van Eaton, and lodged in
the station house until the Sacramento boat left. He was captured at
Hall's Tavern, between San Jose and the New Almaden mines, after a
severe fight, on the night that the Sheriff's party killed his two
comrades. He confesses that he belonged to an organized band of robbers,
under the command of Ingram, who held a Captain's commission in the
Confederate army, signed by Jeff. Davis, and says they were armed and
equipped by Secessionists throughout the State, among whom he mentioned
several who are well known in Santa Clara county, and two in this city.
He says he is only nineteen years old; but to a disinterested spectator
he looks older by two or three years.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 21, 1864


Mollie Livingston and two friends of hers, Terese and Jessie, none of
whom are of at all doubtful reputation, cast aside their superfluous
clothing and engaged in a splendid triangular fist fight in Spofford
Alley about seven o'clock yesterday evening. It was a shiftless row,
however, without aim or object, and for this reason officers Evrard and
McCormick broke it up and confined the parties to it in the City Prison.
It originated in whiskey.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 21, 1864


As foolish a thing as a man can do is to steal anything while officer
Rose is in town. A Mrs. Ashley, who lives in Bush between Powell and
Mason streets, was robbed of a gold belt-buckle, some silver spoons,
etc., on Saturday, the 9th, and yesterday she laid the matter before one
of our Police officers, who told her to find officer Rose and give
him charge of the matter. She found him, but she was too late for
her information to be of any use--he had already recovered the stolen
property and tracked the thief to his den also. It is said he follows
people by the foot-prints they make on the brick pavements.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 22, 1864


When we contracted to report for this newspaper, the important matter of
two earthquakes a month was not considered in the salary. There shall
be no mistake of that kind in the next contract, though. Last night, at
twenty minutes to eleven, the regular semi-monthly earthquake, due the
night before, arrived twenty-four hours behind time, but it made up for
the delay in uncommon and altogether unnecessary energy and enthusiasm.
The first effort was so gentle as to move the inexperienced stranger to
the expression of contempt and brave but very bad jokes; but the second
was calculated to move him out of his boots, unless they fitted
him neatly. Up in the third story of this building the sensation we
experienced was as if we had been sent for and were mighty anxious to
go. The house seemed to waltz from side to side with a quick motion,
suggestive of sifting corn meal through a sieve; afterward it rocked
grandly to and fro like a prodigious cradle, and in the meantime several
persons started downstairs to see if there were anybody in the street so
timid as to be frightened at a mere earthquake. The third shock was not
important, as compared with the stunner that had just preceded it.
That second shock drove people out of the theatres by dozens. At the
Metropolitan, we are told that Franks, the comedian, had just come on
the stage, (they were playing the "Ticket-of-Leave Man,") and was
about to express the unbounded faith he had in May; he paused until the
jarring had subsided, and then improved and added force to the text by
exclaiming, "It will take more than an earthquake to shake my faith in
that woman!" And in that, Franks achieved a sublime triumph over the
elements, for he "brought the house down," and the earthquake couldn't.
From the time the shocks commenced last night, until the windows had
stopped rattling, a minute and a half had elapsed.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 22, 1864


We are pleased to hear of the prosperous condition of the Dashaway
Society. Their ranks, we are assured, are constantly filling up. The
draught with them is working well, causing many to volunteer. The bounty
they receive is sobriety, respect and health, and the blessings of
families. We will not attribute all these new recruitings to the high
tariff, and the difficulty of obtaining any decent whiskey. But some
who join give this as their reason. They fear strychnine more than
inebriation. They find it impossible to exhaust all the tarantula juice
in the country, as they have been endeavoring to do for a long while, in
hopes to get at some decent "rum" after all the tangle-leg should have
been swallowed, and so conclude to save tariff on liquors and life by
coming square up to the hydrant. Their return to original innocence
and primitive bibations will be gladly welcomed. Water is a forgiving
friend. After years of estrangement it meets the depraved taste with
the same friendship as before. Water bears no enmity. But it must be
a strange meeting--water pure and the tongues of some of our solid
drinkers of Bourbon and its dishonest relations. Alkali water to the
innocent mouths of cattle from the waters of the Mississippi could not
seem stranger nor more disagreeable at first. But it will come around
right at last. Success to the tariff and the Dashaways.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 22, 1864


A long file of applicants, perhaps seventy-five or eighty, passed in
review before the Police Commissioners yesterday afternoon, anxious to
be employed by the city in Snatching drunks, burglars, petty larcenors,
wife-whippers, and all offenders generally, under the authority of a
star on the left breast. One of the candidates--a fine, burly specimen
of an Emeralder--leaned negligently against the door-post, speculating
on his chances of being "passed," and at the same time whiffing
industriously at an old dhudeen, blackened by a thousand smokes. He
was smoking thus thoughtfully when a contraband passed him, conveying a
message to some official in the Court.

"There goes another applicant," said a wag at his elbow.

"What?" asked the smoker.

"A darkey looking for a sit on the Police," was the reply.

"An' do they give nagurs a chance on the Polis?"

"Of course."

"Then, be J-s," said Pat, knocking the ashes out of his pipe and stowing
it away, "I'm out of the ring; I wouldn't demane mesilf padrowling
o'nights with a nagur."

He gave one glance at the innocent and unsuspecting darkey, and left the
place in disgust.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 22, 1864


All of a sudden, we have imbibed a most extravagant respect for
Grand Juries. Judge Cowles fined a man two hundred and fifty dollars,
yesterday, and sentenced him to five days imprisonment in the County
Jail, for cherishing a sentiment of the opposite character. Otto Keating
was summoned before the Grand Jury for the May term, and refused to
answer one or two of the questions asked him. Judge Cowles hauled him up
for contempt, but let him go without punishment. He was again called
for by the Grand Jury, when he answered the questions he had declined to
answer before, but refused to answer some new ones that were asked him.
The punishment we have mentioned was the result. The great popularity
of Judge Cowles with the people of San Francisco rests upon two rare
judicial traits, which are strongly developed in his character, viz: The
quality of mercy, with the quality of discerning where it is proper
to exercise it; and the quality of fearlessly administering red-hot
penalties that make a transgressor fairly waltz, when he deserves it. An
innocent man is safe enough in the County Court, but if he is guilty, he
ought always to do what he honestly can to get a change of venue.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 22, 1864


Rev. H. H. Kavanaugh, represented as a Bishop of the M. E. Church South,
whose home until quite recently has been in Georgia, but who for
some time past has been travelling around in this part of the State
organizing Churches and preaching the Gospel as the M. E. Church South
understand it, to many congregations of Rebel sympathizers, was on
Monday arrested by Captain Jackson, United States Marshal for the
Southern District of this State. The arrest was made at Black's ranch,
Salt Spring Valley, Calaveras county, whilst the Bishop was holding a
camp-meeting. By the Reverend gentleman's request, he was granted his
parole until he could preach a sermon, on promise to report himself at
this city yesterday for passage on the San Francisco steamer, which he
did accordingly. We cannot state the precise charges on which he was

Getting military information is about the slowest business we ever
undertook. We clipped the above paragraph from the Stockton Independent
at eleven o'clock yesterday morning, and went skirmishing among the
"chief captains," as the Bible modestly terms Brigadier Generals, in
search of further information, from that time until half past seven
o'clock in the evening, before we got it. We will engage to find out who
wrote the "Junius Letters" in less time than that, if we have a mind to
turn our attention to it. We started to the Provost Marshal's office,
but met another reporter, who said: "I suppose I know where you're
going, but it's no use--just come from there--military etiquette and
all that, you know--those fellows are mum--won't tell anything about
it--damn!" We sought General McDowell, but he had gone to Oakland. In
the course of the afternoon we visited all kinds of headquarters and
places, and called on General Mason, Colonel Drum, General Van Bokkelen,
Leland of the Occidental, Chief Burke, Keating, Emperor Norton, and
everybody else that would be likely to know the Government's business,
and knowing it, be willing to impart the coveted information for a
consideration such as the wealthy fraternity of reporters are always
prepared to promise. We did finally get it, from a high official source,
and without any charge whatever--but then the satisfaction of the thing
was all sapped out of it by exquisite "touches on the raw"--which means,
hints that military matters were not proper subjects to branch out on
in the popular sensational way so palatable to the people, and mild but
extremely forcible suggestions about the unhappy fate that has overtaken
fellows who ventured to experiment on "contraband news." We shall not go
beyond the proper limits, if we fully appreciate those suggestions, and
we think we do. We were told that we might say the military authorities,
hearing where the Bishop had come from, (and may be what he was
about--we will just "chance" that notion for a "flyer,") did send
Captain Jackson to simply ask the Bishop to come down to San Francisco;
(he didn't arrest the Bishop, at all--but most anybody would have come
on a nice little invitation like that, without waiting for the formal
compliment of an arrest: another excessively smart suggestion of ours,
and we do hope it isn't contraband;) the Captain only requested the
Bishop to come down here and explain to the authorities what he was up
to; and he did--he arrived here night before last--and explained it
in writing, and that document and the Bishop have been taken under
advisement, (and we think we were told a decision had been arrived at,
and that it was not public property just yet--but we are not sure, and
we had rather not take any chances on this part of the business.) We
do know, however, that the Bishop and his document are still under
advisement as far as the public are concerned, and we would further
advise the public not to get in a sweat about it, but to hold their grip
patiently until it is proper for them to know all about the matter. This
is all we know concerning the Bishop and his explanation, and if we
have branched out too much and shed something that trenches upon that
infernal "contraband" rule, we want to go home.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 23, 1864


Yesterday, in the Police Court, George Lambertson and Ralph Doyle, one
a full-grown man and the other a boy of fourteen, pleaded guilty to the
charge of exhibiting obscene pictures. Officers Lees, Evrard and Rose,
some time since, got on the track of a regular system of prostituting
young girls, which was being carried on by a number of men and boys who
had banded themselves together for the purpose, and their efforts
have resulted in the arrest of the two persons above named, and the
unearthing of two more of the boys and two or three men, who are
probably all captured by this time. The name of one of the men is Emile
Buffandeau; two of the boys are Harry Fenton and George Ayres. The men
made use of the boys to decoy the girls to their rooms, where their
ruin was effected. These rooms were well stocked with obscene books and
pictures. The officers say that the further they probe the matter
the more astounding are the developments, and the more widespread the
operations of this infamous association are discovered to be. The names
of some fifteen of these debauched girls have already been ascertained,
and others are suspected of properly belonging on the list. Some of
them are members of families of high respectability, and the balance,
as young Doyle phrases it, are "baldheaded," that is, unbonneted street
girls. The ages of the lot vary from ten or twelve to fifteen. Ralph
Doyle says that he and the other two boys, Ayres and Fenton, were
"confidants," but that he knows of no "gang," nor confederation of men
and boys together, in the wretched business. He is aware, however,
that a large number of men and boys and young girls are in the habit of
visiting each other's rooms, but on their own individual responsibility
only, he thinks. He says the girls showed him the obscene pictures,
instead of his being guilty of that sort of conduct with them, and he is
further of the opinion that they have done the seducing in most of the
other cases, as they did in his. He is a fine, handsome, manly little
fellow, uses excellent language, and his bearing is quiet and perfectly
well-bred. He tells his story the same way every time, and we believe he
tells the truth. All his revelations, however, will not do to print.
The boys concerned in this extraordinary affair will be sent to the
Industrial School, as they are all very young, and it is to be hoped
that the law will be stretched to its utmost tension for the punishment
of the men...Since the above was in type, we have learned that the
terrible developments detailed above, were brought to light through
the energy and industry of the master of one of the Schools. He had
ascertained the names and addresses of a great number of men and boys
not mentioned in this article, who were implicated in these villainous
transactions, and was in a fair way of securing their apprehension,
but the premature disclosure of the facts and their publication in the
evening papers, it is feared, will put the scoundrels on their guard,
and prevent their capture. Furthermore, according to our latest
information, there are thirty names of debauched young girls on the
list. The man Lambertson, by whom a poor orphan girl of fifteen has
become enceinte, has made over to her, in the hope of escaping the
penitentiary, such property as he owned in the city. We are also very
glad to learn, from the best authority, that Ralph Doyle, so far from
being a leader among the miscreants, as has been said of him, was the
most innocent in the party, and that it is not in his nature to do an
unworthy action when left to the guidance of his own good instincts.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 23, 1864


A few days ago, L. Kahn bought ten thousand cigars from a man named
Cohen, promising to pay twenty dollars per thousand in gold for them on
delivery. He had them taken and left in a cellar, and told the plaintiff
to call in an hour or so afterwards and get his money. When the man
called, according to appointment, Kahn was absent and so were the
cigars; and finally, when he did succeed in corralling his debtor, the
fellow tendered green-backs in payment of his bill. The result was a
charge preferred in the Police Court against Kahn, for obtaining goods
under false pretences. After a patient hearing of the case, Judge
Shepheard said he would send it up to the County Court (placing
defendant under one thousand dollars' bonds,) and if they felt there
as he did, Kahn would certainly be punished for the crime he had been
charged with, or perhaps even for grand larceny, which was the real
spirit of the offence. He said Kahn's conduct was based in fraud, and
carried out in fraud; there was fraud in its conception and fraud in its
execution; and he considered the man as guilty as the occupant of any
jail in the country. The counsel for defendant said if there was any
fraud in the matter, it probably lay in the issuance of the green-backs
in the first place. Judge Shepheard said, "I am aware that you are a
Union man, Sir, but notwithstanding that, I will permit no more such
language as that to be used in this Court; and I will punish any man who
repeats the offences here, for contempt, or imprison him for treason,
for I regard it as nothing more nor less than treason. It is your duty
and mine, Sir, to uphold the Government and forbear to question the
righteousness of its acts." The lawyer protested his innocence of any
intention to commit the chiefest among crimes, and quiet was restored

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 23, 1864


Night before last, Miss Margaret McQuinn complained to Captain Lees
that she had been raped by the driver of hack No. 28, and officer Blitz,
whose duty it is to attend to the followers of that occupation, was
deputed to ferret out the criminal and arrest him, which he did. The
man's name is Barney Gillan. The woman is large and strongly built, and
about thirty years of age. From her story--all of which it is not by
any means necessary to publish--it would seem that she is supernaturally
green. She says she arrived here from Manchester, New Hampshire, last
Monday, in the Constitution, and since then three different hackmen have
endeavored to entrap her. Day before yesterday, Gillan, under pretence
of hunting a situation as a servant for her among some respectable
families in the country with whom he represented himself as being very
popular, took her to some out-of-the-way den kept by a Frenchman, near
the Mission, and ruined her by force, as above stated. She returned to
town with him, and then excused herself and went and laid the matter
before the detective department. There is a charge of this kind brought
against some hackman or other about once every five or six months, and
it is fully time an example were made that would forever put a stop to
such villainy on their part. Gillan has been admitted to bail in the sum
of one thousand dollars.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 24, 1864


We chronicle the usual visitations of justice upon those persons whose
errors are venial, and the result of an unfortunate appetite, or temper,
always with a feeling of regret that the well-being of society demands
inflexibly a judgment "according to the law and the testimony." We can
compassionate the man whose domestic troubles, or business reverses,
drive him to drink frenzy from the bowl, or who, in a momentary heat,
retaliates on wanton injury, or insult, or errs through ignorance; but
there are instances where the only regret is that the power of the
Judge to punish is limited to a penalty not at all commensurate with
the magnitude of the offence. In the case of George Lambertson, who was
arrested for infamous demoralizing practices with young school girls,
and who pleaded guilty in the Police Court, Judge Shepheard inflicted
upon the miscreant the heaviest penalty prescribed by the law for his
crime. Lambertson receives a term of three months in the County Jail,
and a fine of five hundred dollars, (which fine will extend the term
of imprisonment until the full amount is served out, at the rate of two
dollars per day, in addition to the three months aforesaid,) is a part
of the penalty.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 26, 1864


At the next meeting of the Board of Supervisors, Mr. Cummings, member
from the Tenth District, will introduce an ordinance requiring all
drivers of hacks, as well as hack-owners, to take out license, to the
end that the eternal dodging of responsibility by that class of
the community may be checkmated. One plan of extorting money from
passengers, which is followed by hackmen under the present loose system,
might be frustrated, perhaps, by Mr. Cummings' proposed bill. The plan
we refer to is this: A stranger takes a hack at the steamboat landing,
and makes a bargain for his transportation to a hotel; on the road,
the driver's confederate takes the reins, delivers the passenger at the
hotel, and charges him double, swearing he knows nothing of the previous
contract. We were under the impression that the owner of the hack was
responsible in cases of illegal charging, but those whose business it is
to know, tell us it is not so. It ought to be, at any rate. It doesn't
even require horse-sense to know that much. And while the subject is
before the Board, an ordinance is to be framed requiring the hackmen
around Portsmouth Square to stay where they belong, and not collect
in squads, obstructing the sidewalks, and making a general nuisance of
themselves. So far, Signor Blitz, and the Police Court, and the Board
of Supervisors, all put together, have not been able to keep the
hackmen straight. One of the fraternity, Barney Gillan, is up to-day
for committing a rape on a defenceless young woman, thirty-five years of
age, and they will probably make him sweat for it.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 30, 1864


For several days a vagrant two story frame house has been wandering
listlessly about Commercial street, above this office, and she has
finally stopped in the middle of the thoroughfare, and is staring
dejectedly towards Montgomery street, as if she would like to go down
there, but really don't feel equal to the exertion. We wish they
would trot her along and leave the street open; she is an impassable
obstruction and an intolerable nuisance where she stands now. If they
set her up there to be looked at, it is all right; but we have looked at
her as much as we want to, and are anxious for her to move along; we are
not stuck after her any.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 30, 1864


This faded relic of gentility--or, rather, this washed-out relic, for
every tint of that description is gone--was brought to the station-house
yesterday, in the arms of Officers Marsh and Ball, in a state of beastly
intoxication. She cursed the Union and lauded the Confederacy for half
an hour, and then she cast up part of her dinner; during the succeeding
half hour, or perhaps it might have been three-quarters, she continued
to curse the Federal Union and belch fuming and offensive blessings
upon the Southern Confederacy, and then she cast up the balance of her
dinner. She seemed much relieved. She so expressed herself. She observed
to the prison-keeper, and casually to such as were standing around,
although strangers to her, that she didn't care a d--n. She said it
in that tone of quiet cheerfulness and contentment, which marks the
troubled spirit at peace again after its stormy season of unrest. So
they tackled her once more, and jammed her into the "dark cell," and
locked her up. To such of her friends as gentle love for her may
inspire with agonized suspense on her account, we would say: Banish your
foreboding fears, for she's safe.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 30, 1864


Barney Gillan, the hackman against whom a charge of rape was preferred
some days since, had an examination yesterday before Judge Shepheard.
At first the tears and apparent distress of the victim of the alleged
outrage, while occupying the witness's stand, were calculated to move
the hearts of those present and unacquainted with the facts; but as the
examination progressed the matter began to assume a very questionable
phase, and it was soon apparent that if there had been any rape
committed at all, it was of a very modified type. True, the lady did
enter her protest, and had a notion to halloo, when Gillan was about
taking undue liberties with her; but she sought a refuge and assuaged
her grief that night at the Portsmouth Hotel, in the embraces of a
benevolent person with whom she had met for the first time that day. He
protected her injured innocence until seven o'clock the next morning,
when she sallied forth to seek another protector. The case was

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 30, 1864


The bark Yankee arrived from Honolulu yesterday, bringing another
hundred barrels of molasses to Rev. H. W. Bellows, contributed by
Captain Makee, and to be sold for the benefit of the Sanitary Fund. We
noticed a like donation from the same distant patriot a day or two ago,
which was sold here and netted upwards of twelve hundred dollars to the
fund. Captain Makee's sugar plantation, on one of the Hawaiian Islands,
whence this molasses comes, is rather extensive. He has seven hundred
acres of cane growing, and this area will be increased during the next
few months to nine hundred or a thousand acres. There is no water on
the plantation, and irrigation has to be resorted to. Even the water
required for the steam engine and other purposes in the manufacture
of sugar, has to be brought from a spring on a mountain, three miles
distant, through iron pipes; yet, so rich is the land that six tons of
sugar have been made on a single acre, and the average is about three
tons. At his own mill, Captain Makee manufactures from eight thousand
to ten thousand pounds of sugar a day. During the present year, his
plantation has been very successful, and promises to produce the
largest amount of sugar yet obtained from any one estate in the Hawaiian
Islands. Its product will probably realize, at present rates, this year,
over one hundred thousand dollars; and, altogether, its chances, in a
business point of view, may be regarded as rather a "deader thing" than
Gould & Curry. The estate is expected to yield over two million pounds
of sugar next year. Captain Makee has invented a "molasses pan" and
a "double cane cart," which are spoken of as great triumphs of Yankee

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 31, 1864


That melancholy old frame house that has been loafing around Commercial
street for the past week, got disgusted at the notice we gave her in the
last issue of the CALL, and drifted off into some other part of the city
yesterday. It is pleasing to our vanity to imagine that if it had not
been for our sagacity in divining her hellish designs, and our fearless
exposure of them, she would have been down on Montgomery street to-day,
playing herself for a hotel. As it is, she has folded her tents like the
Arabs, and quietly stolen away, behind several yoke of oxen.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 31, 1864


The lamented Lazarus departed this life about a year ago, and from that
time until recently poor Bummer has mourned the loss of his faithful
friend in solitude, scorning the sympathy and companionship of his
race with that stately reserve and exclusiveness which has always
distinguished him since he became a citizen of San Francisco. But, for
several weeks past, we have observed a vagrant black puppy has taken
up with him, and attends him in his promenades, bums with him at the
restaurants, and watches over his slumbers as unremittingly as did
the sainted Lazarus of other days. Whether that puppy really feels an
unselfish affection for Bummer, or whether he is actuated by unworthy
motives, and goes with him merely to ring in on the eating houses
through his popularity at such establishments, or whether he is one of
those fawning sycophants that fasten upon the world's heroes in order
that they may be glorified by the reflected light of greatness, we can
not yet determine. We only know that he hangs around Bummer, and snarls
at intruders upon his repose, and looks proud and happy when the old dog
condescends to notice him. He ventures upon no puppyish levity in the
presence of his prince, and essays no unbecoming familiarity, but in all
respects conducts himself with the respectful decorum which such a puppy
so situated should display. Consequently, in time, he may grow into high

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 31, 1864


On Friday morning, Catherine Leary, who lives in Waverley Place, got
up and found all the doors in her house open, and a silk dress worth
seventy-five dollars missing, and also an alarm clock, said to be worth
ten dollars; but we beg to be left unmolested in the opinion that it
isn't worth six bits, if it didn't know enough to give the alarm when
the house was full of thieves. Officer Rose, of the Detective Police,
recovered the silk dress yesterday, and the imbecile clock, and also
the Chinaman who is supposed to have committed the burglary. Hoping the
accused may prove innocent, we prefer not to blast his reputation by
publishing his name yet, which is Ah Chum.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 31, 1864


Yesterday afternoon, the Deputy Collector, Auditor, and fifteen other
Custom House officers sent in their resignations, assigning as a reason
for doing so, that with green-backs at the present rates, (forty cents,)
their wages were less than those received by day laborers, and being
inadequate to defray the expense of living, they were compelled to
resign. Custom House salaries are not very heavy, even when paid in
gold. We are informed that the Collector telegraphed to Washington at
once concerning the matter.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, July 31, 1864


Work on the Camanche is progressing rapidly. The foreman observed
yesterday, with the air of a man who is satisfied his listener is
an uncommonly intelligent man, and knows all about things, that the
"garboard streak" had been up some time. It is not possible to conceive
the satisfaction we derived from that information. She must be all right
now, isn't she? One of those gunboats is generally all right when she
has her "garboard streak" up, perhaps. Such has been our experience.
It is limited, but that is of no real consequence, probably. We looked
around a little, and noticed that there was another streak up, also,
running fore-and-aft, and several streaks running crossways, and enough
old iron lying around to make as many more streaks as they want, if it
holds out. It was excessively cheerful and gratifying. The public may
rest easy--work on the Camanche is streaking along with extraordinary

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 2, 1864


All day yesterday the cars were carrying colored people of all shades
and tints, and of all sizes and both sexes, out to Hayes' Park, to
celebrate the anniversary of the emancipation of their race in England's
West Indian possessions years ago. They rode the fiery untamed steeds
that are kept for equestrian duty in the grounds; they practised pistol
shooting, but abstained from destroying the targets; they swung; they
promenaded among the shrubbery; they filled themselves up with beer and
sandwiches--all just as the thing is done there by white folks--and they
essayed to dance, but the effort was not a brilliant success. It was
interesting to look at, though. For languid, slow-moving, pretentious,
impressive, solemn, and excessively high-toned and aristocratic dancing,
commend us to the disenthralled North American negro, when there is no
restraint upon his natural propensity to put on airs. White folks of
the upper stratum of society pretend to walk through quadrilles, in a
stately way, but these saddle-colored young ladies can discount them in
the slow-movement evidence of high gentility. They don't know much about
dancing, but they "let on" magnificently, as if the mazes of a quadrille
were their native element, and they move serenely through it and tangle
it hopelessly and inextricably, with an unctuous satisfaction that is
surpassingly pleasant to witness. By the middle of the afternoon
about two hundred darkies were assembled at the Park; or rather, to
be precise, there was not much "darky" about it, either; for if the
prevailing lightness of tint was worth anything as evidence, the noble
miscegenationist had been skirmishing considerably among them in days
gone by. It was expected that the colored race would come out strong in
the matter of numbers (and otherwise) in the evening, when a grand ball
was to be given and last all night.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 2, 1864


If ever you want to find Ellen Quinn, or Gentle Julia, or Mary Holt,
or Haidee Leonard, or Annie Berry, please call at the County Jail,
upstairs. Mary Holt has spent most of her time there for the past
fourteen years, it is said, and the most inexperienced of this company
of choice spirits (gin) has sojourned there chiefly for the last three
years. Mary Holt has just enlisted again for the County Jail for fifty
days, and next time she comes out she will probably enlist for the war.
Following is the record of service of these old soldiers for the past
twelve months: Out of the 365 days, Ellen Quinn spent 240 in the County
Jail; Gentle Julia, 210 in the station house and County Jail together;
Mary Holt, 190 in the County Jail alone; Haidee Leonard, 106 in the
County Jail; Annie Berry, 111 in the County Jail. The balance of the
year these fellows have spent in the stationhouse, for the most part,
for they suffer arrest and confinement there three times, with about two
days imprisonment for each arrest, before they can pass muster and
get into the County Jail. The veteran Mary Holt commenced fighting the
prisons in 1849 or '50.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 2, 1864


Last Saturday, eleven inspectors in the barge office of the Custom House
received a call from the Poll tax Collector, and they tendered
their indebtedness in the kind of money their salaries are paid
in--green-backs. The Collector said he was not allowed to take anything
but coin, and the inspectors said they would suffer imprisonment before
they would pay in anything but green-backs. The soundness of this
position will be appreciated when you come to reflect that they only get
four dollars a day, anyhow, and when that sum is mashed into green-backs
at present rates, it only amounts to about a dollar and a half a day.
Now, estimating their actual living expenses at a dollar and forty-five
cents a day--and it cannot fall below that while they continue to eat
anything--how long would it take one of those inspectors to pay this
oppressive Poll-tax in coin out of the clear profits of his labor? Why,
it would take two months and three weeks, as nearly as you could come at
it; as the amount of the tax is four dollars.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 3, 1864


Last night, a young man by the name of John Ferguson went to the drug
store of Mr. Riley, on the corner of Mission and Second streets, and
asked for strychnine, as he said, to kill a dog. He got ten grains. He
went into Mission street, took the poison, and was soon met by a friend,
to whom he said that he was sick, had taken poison, and was dying. A
doctor was called at once, who administered mustard and warm water,
which caused nausea and vomiting, which relieved him by freeing the
stomach of the poison. Hopes are entertained of his recovery. The cause
of this attempt upon his own life is said to be depression from loss of
employment and pecuniary difficulties.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 3, 1864


"How's stocks this morning?" "Movement in 'Buckeye.'" This little
characteristic salutation, a few days since, prefaced a breach of the
peace on Montgomery street, thus: Mr. Green, who is learned in the
matter of stocks, was authorized to purchase fifty shares of "Buckeye"
at four dollars and a half. Mr. Jazinski, also talented in the
same line, had a quantity for sale at five dollars, the same having
previously been purchased by his principal at twenty-one dollars,
showing conclusively that stocks are sometimes up and at other times
very much down. Mr. G., the author of the second remark in the above
brief dialogue, said he would see whether his principal would give five
dollars, and departed for that purpose. Mr. J. waited expectantly for a
long time, say a matter of several hours, but in the interval saw G. a
number of times and was by him informed that the person who wanted the
stock was for the time being distinctly invisible to the naked eye.
During this invisibility, "Buckeye" depreciates, and the seller becoming
impatient, at last insists that Mr. Green should take the stock at five
dollars, himself, without reference to his principal, laying down the
proposition that the latter gentleman had inaugurated the transaction
in the character of principal himself, and that he held him for it.
Mr. Green took issue on this point, and declared that there had been no
purchase. Mr. J. said there had--Mr. G. said there hadn't. The mutual
contradiction grew positive, with expletives and profane adjectives,
amounting to a mutual impeachment of veracity, upon which Mr. Green
smote the countenance of the other broker, thereby breaking up the
negotiations and breaking the peace at the same time. A blow at sea may
be a breeze, a gale or a tempest, but a blow on land is very likely to
be an assault and battery. Of this latter kind was the blow given by
Mr. Green, and in consequence thereof he was yesterday ordered by Judge
Shepheard to appear this morning for sentence.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 3, 1864


Under-Sheriff Hall, of Santa Clara county, and Messrs. Hume and Van
Eaton, Under and Deputy Sheriffs of El Dorado county, arrived from San
Jose by the cars, yesterday evening, with the following splendid haul of
Placerville stage robbers, captured by them in the vicinity of San Jose,
early yesterday morning: Henry Jarbo, George Cross, J. A. Robinson,
Wallace Clendening, Joseph Gamble, Joseph Jordan, Thomas Freer, James
Freer, John Ingraham, Gately and Hodges--eleven. Sheriff Hall also
brought down another of the robber gang named Wilson, whom he caught
a week ago. He has been upon the track of all these men, and has been
"spotting" them for the past three months. The confession of young
Glasby confirmed his suspicions concerning them. The prisoners are
farmers, for the most part, and resided round about San Jose; they are
all Constitutional Democrats. They are not all charged with having taken
part in the stage robbery, but some of them did, and the others were
members of the robber organization, and accessories to the robbery
before and after the fact. The organization dates back to the first of
May, and the process of forming it was under way a good while before
that. Its object was to raise men for the Confederate service, and they
were to furnish themselves with equipments and supplies by guerrilla
practice on the highway. Its ramifications are supposed to be very
extensive, and they are known to have received aid and comfort from many
prominent citizens. Some of the men arrested are well-to-do farmers. We
are told by a resident of Santa Clara county that the prisoner Robinson
is a brother-in-law of the editor of the Stockton Democratic organ, the
Beacon. It is not known whether the men recruited for the Confederate
service were to do duty only in this State, or elsewhere. The
headquarters of the gang were at the house of a man named Hodges, who
lives in the mountains east of San Jose. The six who robbed Wells, Fargo
and Co's stage, started from Hodges'. Under-Sheriff Hall arrested this
man at the "Willows," near San Jose, early yesterday morning, where he
had unsuspectingly come on business. Two of the prisoners in this new
haul are believed to have taken a hand in the late robbery of Langton's
Express. Grant, Baker, and Captain Ingram, of the gang, have escaped,
and left for parts unknown. Baker and Ingram were kept in hiding for a
day or two by one Green Duff at his house near San Jose, and the latter
furnished Baker a horse to escape on. Mr. Hall arrested a man at Duff's
house, yesterday morning. The man is a good Constitutional Democrat. The
rumor prevalent here yesterday, that there was a terrific fight in San
Jose the night before, with the stage robbers, was groundless; there was
no fight. Colonel Jackson telegraphed for one thousand rounds of ball
cartridge yesterday morning--in order to be prepared for an emergency,
perhaps, in case one should arise--and the militia of San Jose were
called together the night before and provided with a signal for the same
purpose; they went further than was required, and lay on their arms in
anticipation of trouble. Out of these ominous circumstances the rumor we
have spoken of probably grew. Sheriff Hall also brought up with him
last night three State prisoners, viz: Henry Hoffman, Charles Buford
and Antonio Leiva, all sentenced for one year for grand larceny; he will
take them to San Quentin to-day, and the El Dorado officers will depart
with the Secesh stage robbers on the Sacramento boat this evening. No
blood was spilled in arresting the robber gang. One posse of men under
Sheriff Hall, and another under officers Hume and Van Eaton, left San
Jose before daylight yesterday morning, and travelled in different
directions; the former made six of the arrests, and the latter five.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 3, 1864


The Democratic Indignation Meeting at Hayes' Park, last evening,
amounted to a very short row of small potatoes, with few in the hill.
The whole number present certainly did not exceed four hundred, of whom
at least one-half were Union men, or supporters of the Administration,
drawn thither by curiosity and the cars. The meeting was called to order
by Col. Phelps. Vociferous calls for Beriah Brown brought him to the
platform, and he delivered himself of a few remarks substantially as

Gentlemen:--We have assembled here to-night as American citizens--(Great
noise in the hall here, and the speaker's voice was inaudible for
several moments.) We meet here to offer no opposition to the Government;
but we meet here to discuss, the question of our rights as citizens. We
ask for no rights but what each individual is entitled to; to do as we
would be done by under all circumstances--at the same time we do not
propose to surrender our rights as American citizens. (Applause.)This, I
understand, is the object of the meeting. The first business, gentlemen,
is to hear the report of the Committee appointed to draft resolutions.

The following resolutions were then handed Mr. Brown, who had previously
been appointed Chairman of the meeting, which were as follows. (We omit
giving the preamble at length, as it all amounted simply to a renewal
of fidelity to the Constitutions of the State and United States, and
a declaration of intention to maintain the laws and yield a willing
support to all just and legally constituted authorities in the
administration thereof, etc.; and to the best of our ability to support
whatever good citizens may rightfully do, to maintain domestic peace
and promote general welfare. That they demand nothing but a uniform
and faithful administration of the laws, and no privilege but what
is clearly and indisputably guaranteed by the Constitutions of our
Government. It also declared that where there is no law there is no
freedom, and contained the usual declaiming against the abridgment of
the freedom of speech and the press.)

Resolved, That we regard with alarm all exercise of power by the United
States Government, or its agents, not specifically delegated to that
Government, and in derogation of the reserved rights of States, and in
abridgment of the constitutional guarantees to the people, as tending to
central despotism and the subjugation of popular liberty.

Resolved, That, whenever through fear of spies or informers, or the
power of military commanders to arrest and imprison American citizens,
they shall be deterred from peaceably assembling together and freely
expressing their approval or disapproval of measures of public policy,
the point is reached beyond which submission merges the free man into a

Resolved, That the spotless reputation of Bishop Kavanaugh, and
the well-known patriotism and devotion of Charles L. Weller, to the
Constitution and the Union, justify the belief that the arrest of these
gentlemen was procured by the perjury of mercenary spies and informers,
or by persons actuated solely by personal malice, and we can but express
the sentiments of all honorable men in denouncing the employment of
those degraded wretches, an offence to civilization, and a disgrace to

After the passage of the resolutions, the band discoursed a National

Dr. Wozencraft was then introduced by the chairman. His speech was
simply a rehash of all the whinings and hypocrisy of Copperheads since
the conflict began. He had much to say about the imminence of our danger
of becoming involved in scenes such as are now being witnessed in the
Southern States, from a determination on the part of large numbers to
resist with force the arbitrary and unconstitutional measures that were
being inaugurated in our midst. "The record of the Democratic party
is but a record of the Nation's power and glory; while that of the
Abolition party is a record of her shame and disintegration." He said
there are but two parties--the Democratic party, whose mission is to
sustain the Union, and the Abolition party, which is seeking to destroy
it. There is no hope for Union, peace and prosperity, only through a
Conservative Democratic Administration. The North was unanimous in their
opposition to the idea of Secession. To the support of the Government
in suppressing the Rebellion, there was not a dissenting voice until the
war was made one of subjugation, abolition and confiscation. Democrats
were law-abiding and constitutional people, and the present supporters
of the Administration are the Secessionists. Jeff. Davis and his
followers are simply their allies in the work of destroying the
Government. The speaker predicted that "so soon as we get control of the
Federal Government, which by the help of God we hope to do at the coming
election, they (the Republicans) will declare that the Pacific States
will withdraw and form themselves into a separate Republic." Here he
read an extract from a speech of Mr. Seward's, and continued for about
twenty minutes in the usual strain of his ilk.

At the close of his speech the band made more music. After which, Zach.
Montgomery, of Marysville, appeared on the stand. He commenced by saying
that he would speak from the record, (thereby meaning that he would read
his speech from a manuscript, which he did.) They had assembled there
to consider how they should preserve the liberties of the people of
California, and avert the horrors of civil war. Then followed the
inevitable tirade against the measures of the Administration and its
appointed agents, for suppressing treason and taking seditious persons
into custody. He said that there is no use to try to disguise the fact
that there is danger of civil war in this State, and intimated that a
certain party, chafing under the discipline of Abraham Lincoln, was on
the verge of outbreak, and the smothered volcano might burst out at any
moment, and that we were nearer the scenes which our brethren in the
older States were now witnessing than many might imagine. There were but
two roads before us; the one leads to civil war, the other to peace.
He declared in so many words that the Administration were determinedly
pursuing the former road. Its acts were all in direct violation of the
Constitution, and every blow struck at that instrument only drove us
deeper into the danger of civil war and its attendant horrors. He spoke,
as did Wozencraft, like a man who was in the secret of an organization
existing in our midst, with the sole object of resisting by force and
arms, all disciplinary, police or administrative measures which, in
their estimation, might be deemed unconstitutional or oppressive; and
they are to be the judges. Like the other speakers, he also referred to
them in terms which might, without much distortion, be construed into an
approval of their patriotic purpose. The speaker dwelt at great length
on this danger, hidden from unprivileged eyes, and ready to create a
storm--a general disruption in our very midst--ere we were aware of the
least danger. In a word, if General McDowell arrests any more noisy and
treasonable babblers, or insidious enemies to the Government, why we may
look out for guns and a fight.

Mr. Montgomery's enunciation was very impassioned, and he seemed
extremely fearful that the infatuation of the Administration would yet
inevitably, and at no distant period, transfer to our own California
all the horrors of the Eastern battle-fields. In conclusion, he
conjured all, both Republicans and Democrats, to respect and obey the
Constitution and the laws under it, as the only means of averting the
terrible catastrophe, to the brink of which we have been brought; the
only pacificator of that secret element, that is now only resting in a
temporary lull, while preparing for the great and sudden effort which is
to follow the next persistent attempt of the administrative authorities
to enforce an "arbitrary measure."

After a little music to soften down the lion which Montgomery had
roused, (within himself,) Tod Robinson was presented, and with all the
blandishments of an adept at honey-fugling, he proceeded to tell the
people of the wrongs they were suffering at the hands of the present
Administration. He also knows something of their hidden danger, this
secret-steel trap which is to catch all infernal Abolitionists and send
them to perdition without benefit of clergy. He prefaced his speech by
stating the fact that he was born under the behests of freedom, and held
no right nor privilege by the tenure of any man's will. A recapitulation
of his speech would fall on the ear much like the repetition for the
thousandth time of an old thread bare story. Every Californian knows Tod
Robinson by heart, and nobody believes anything he says. We left while
he was speaking, in company with a good Democrat, who said he wasn't
"going to listen to such a d--d rascal as Tod Robinson." Though he
rather favored some of the other speakers, he couldn't go Tod Robinson.
So we all departed, and the meeting shortly after broke up, with the
close of Robinson's speech.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 4, 1864


The young man, John Ferguson, whose attempt to poison himself by
strychnine we recorded in yesterday morning's CALL, is beyond danger.
This gratifying result is due to the exertions of Dr. De Castro, who
was summoned after the first-called physician had abandoned the case and
declared recovery impossible. The Doctor remained with the patient until
the effects of the poison had been completely subdued. Ferguson, we
understand, is a moulder by trade, and was lately in the employ of Ira
P. Rankin. He lost his situation through no fault of his own; but simply
because, with others of his craft, he asked an advance of fifty cents
per day on his wages to meet increased expenses of living. For this
presumption he was thrown out of employment, and it weighed upon his
spirits to the extent of suicide. With some money-getters fifty cents
have more importance than many lives.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 4, 1864


Last Saturday morning, a man named Cheesman, proprietor of a fruit store
at the corner of Market and Second streets, purchased quantities of
fruit from different dealers, and in the afternoon, after taking
an inventory of his wares, sold out his whole establishment for one
thousand dollars. In order to avert suspicion, he paid a month's advance
on his room rent on Friday, and conducted himself in all respects as if
he had made up his mind to remain in San Francisco a century. However,
notwithstanding his subtle diplomacy, his creditors began to suspect him
of an intention to defraud them, and when the places which knew him
once got to knowing him no more, shortly they grew alarmed and fell to
searching for him. They sought him from Saturday night until Tuesday,
and finally found him. He began to play himself for an honest man, at
once, and declared his willingness to pay his debts. They took him to
Justice Cornwall's office, and made him disgorge the money he had with
him, seven hundred and fifty dollars, after which, by authority of a
writ served for that purpose, they submitted him to a rigid examination.
The seven hundred and fifty dollars was deposited in Court; he went
there yesterday morning, with his lawyer, and tried to substitute
green-backs for the amount, but the Judge refused to permit it, and said
it must remain as it was, for distribution among the creditors. Suits
have been commenced against Cheesman by those who loved him and trusted
him, and got burnt at it. They do not love him so much now. He owes
about twelve hundred dollars for fruit, and six hundred dollars borrowed
money. His indebtedness for fruit is distributed among a large number
of dealers, in bills ranging from three dollars up to two hundred and
thirty dollars.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 4, 1864


Secretary Chase's private offices at Washington are fitted with
Axminster carpets, gilded ceilings, velvet furniture, and other
luxurious surroundings which go to hedge about a Cabinet Minister with a
dignity quite appalling to the unaccustomed outsider.

Five minutes after a Custom House clerk had read this item, and with
the recollection of it still upon him, he was paid his monthly salary
in greenbacks, and the consequence was he lost his temper, and became
profane to a degree approaching lunacy.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 5, 1864



Just before three o'clock yesterday morning, a soldier named Simon
Kennedy, while under the influence of a temporary hallucination, killed
a fellow-soldier named Fitzgerald, who was confined in the guard-house
with him, at Black Point, by stabbing the unfortunate man twelve or
fifteen times with a bayonet. The shrieks of the struggling victim
attracted the attention of the sentinel, who opened the door, when the
murderer rushed out and escaped in the darkness, followed by three or
four terrified prisoners. Captain Winder turned out his whole force to
pursue Kennedy, but they found neither him nor any trace of him, save a
bloody towel under the bank near the Bensley Water Works, where he had
evidently washed the blood from his clothing. About seven o'clock a
soldier arrived here with a message from Capt. Winder to Chief Burke,
announcing the murder, and the latter left at once for Black Point,
after giving orders for half a dozen members of the Police force to
mount and follow him. He also requested Captain Van Vost, of the Provost
Department, to detail an equal number of mounted men, to aid in the
search for Kennedy, which request was promptly complied with. Arrived at
Black Point, the Chief procured a description of Kennedy, and acquainted
himself with his habits and antecedents. He was told that the man was a
lunatic, but from the fact of his having wit enough about him to guard
against detection by washing himself, it was evident that he was not
stupidly mad, at any rate. Further inquiries elicited the information
that Kennedy had requested several times, lately, to be taken to Father
Cotter, in Vallejo street, and had once been there, a day or two ago,
in charge of a soldier. The Chief thought it possible that he might
have gone there after his escape, and sent officers Clark and Hoyt to
ascertain if such were the case. The surmise proved correct, and Father
Cotter was at once relieved of his dangerous guest--and dangerous enough
he was, too, as he still had his bayonet with him, bloody and bent by
the murderous thrusts inflicted with it upon the body of Fitzgerald. The
best information concerning this tragedy goes to show that Kennedy is a
sane man upon all subjects except one--that of hanging. He is quiet and
sensible enough until halters and scaffolds are mentioned, and then he
becomes a madman. Some of the causes of this are recent, and some date
far back in the past. He is an extraordinary swimmer, and it is said he
once swam the Mississippi at a point where it was more than a mile and
a half wide, and his bare head being exposed so long to the burning rays
of the sun, the strength and vigor of his brain were impaired by it, and
at intervals since then he has seemed a little flighty. He enlisted in
Davis street, here, and was sent with his company to Alcatraz, where
they remained some time, and were finally transferred to Black Point.
While at Alcatraz, Kennedy was swimming in the Bay with a comrade, upon
one occasion, when the latter was seized with cramps and was drowned.
The men used to tell Kennedy he murdered his comrade, and that he would
be hanged for it; they kept it up until finally the poor wretch got to
brooding over the fate predicted for him until he began to suspect
his brother soldiers of an intention to hang him. He went twice to his
Captain for protection against them. A day or two ago, at Black Point,
the soldiers pestered him again about his chances of being hanged, and
he says the Captain put him in the guard-house for safe keeping. The
supposition is that during the night the horrors came upon him that his
fellow-prisoners were going to hang him, and he seized the bayonet and
fought desperately to save himself. Kennedy told us what he knew about
the murder, but his statements were confused, and he said he did not
recollect much about it. He only knew that three or four men came in the
guard-house to hang him, and said they were going to do it at once; one
of them seized and tried to choke him, and he snatched a bayonet from
the wall, where it was hanging above a dark-colored cap, and struck
out wildly with it in self-defence. He was not certain whether he hit
anybody, but he thought he did. Afterward, he said it was likely he took
the bayonet away from the man who was trying to choke him--and then he
showed wounds on his hands, as if he had a vague notion that they were
evidence of how he came into possession of the weapon. His person and
his clothing were as black as a coal heaver's; he said he changed his
clothes on his way to town, and left his uniform lying in the road. If
he did, the latter was not found. When speaking of the murder, Kennedy
gazes upon the visitor with a fixed, vacant stare, and looks like a man
who is absorbed in trying to recollect something. The body of Fitzgerald
lay at the Coroner's office yesterday; the breast, shoulders, stomach,
hip and arms were covered with little triangular red spots, where
the bayonet had entered. The inquest will be held to-day, so we were
informed. The murderer and his victim were both members of Company D,
Third Artillery. Fitzgerald was a married man; his widow resides in this
city. Since the above was written, a soldier in the regular army has
informed us how the bayonet happened to be in the guard-house within
reach of a prisoner popularly considered to be insane. He says Captain
Mears makes his prisoners do guard duty, and after they are relieved,
their instructions are to take their muskets to the guard-room and clean
them during confinement. He further says the members of Fitzgerald's
Company are incensed at this conduct of permitting deadly weapons to be
carried within reach of the lunatic imprisoned with their comrade.
He says that when a prisoner does guard duty, it is usual for a
noncommissioned officer to go with him and see that he cleans his musket
at the quarters, and leaves it there, and then takes him back to be
locked into the guard-house, unarmed. The soldier says Kennedy first
attacked a man named McDonald, with the bayonet, and then assaulted
Fitzgerald, who was asleep at the time. When he attacked McDonald, he
first put his hand on his breast and asked him if he had a heart,
and where it was situated, and then, without waiting for the desired
information, made a stab at him. It was a wretched piece of business to
let a deadly weapon be taken into a guard room where a man in Kennedy's
condition was confined, and unmilitary people yesterday were wondering
that weapons should be placed within reach of prisoners under any

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 6, 1864


A scoundrel named George R. Powers has been detected in the obscene book
trade and captured. He has been carrying on the trade after a fashion of
his own. Over the signature of "Mrs. Amelia Barstow," he writes chatty,
familiar letters to young girls in the California seminaries, soliciting
patronage for his infamous books and pictures. He made a mistake,
though, when he addressed the following epistle to a school girl
of fourteen years of age, for her home teachings had not been of a
character to enable her to appreciate it, and she sent it at once to her
father. From him it passed to Judge Coon, who handed it to Chief Burke
to be disposed of. The Chief took a lively enough interest in the matter
to take officer Hess from his regular duties in the Police Court and
keep him on the track of Mrs. Barstow for a week and a half, with
Officer Pike to assist him. We suppress the name of the young lady and
that of the school she belongs to, of course:

San Francisco July 21st, 1864.

MISS ______:--I have just received from New York a large number of the
most delightful books you can imagine. To refined young ladies of an
amorous temperament, they are "just the thing." For five dollars sent
to me through the Post Office, in two separate enclosures of two
dollars and a half each, I will forward you two different volumes, each
containing five tinted engravings. Accompanying the package will also
be a beautiful life photograph, entitled "* * * * * * *." The strictest
secrecy will be observed, which may be heightened by your transmitting a
fictitious address, in case you reply to


(We suppress the title of dear Amelia's "life photograph," as being
somewhat too suggestive.--REPORTER.)

Officer Hess suggested the policy of writing an answer to Amelia's note,
and getting it sent through the Post Office to her, as coming from the
young girl she had addressed. He framed the following note, putting in
punctuation marks with great liberality where they did not belong, and
leaving them out where they did, and mimicking school-girl simplicity of
phraseology, and proneness to tautology, with great ingenuity. The Chief
having approved of it, a lady copied it in the microscopic chirography
of sweet fourteen, and it was ready for mailing, as set forth here
below. We suppress the girl's name, and that of the Post Office:

* * * * *, July 27, 1864.

MRS. AMELIA BARSTOW--Dear Madame:--I received your letter which you sent
on the 21st of this month and I am glad, for I have been wishing for
something nice to read for a long time. Father has not given me much
money this month and I cannot send this time the amount you say; but
if you will send me one book by sending two dollars and a half, please
write and tell me so, and by return mail I will send it. A number of the
girls in my class wants some books also, and if you will send one book
for two dollars and a half some four or five others will send for some
also. Please direct to Charles Harris for if directed to a Miss or Mrs.
some of the teachers may get the letter.

Yours truly, * * * * * *

The letter was put into the hands of Postmaster Perkins, who at once
entered into the work of entrapping the miserable Mrs. Barstow with as
much alacrity and earnestness as if the insulted girl had been his own
child. He enclosed the decoy letter in a department envelop to the Post
master of ____, with instructions to postmark and send it back through
the mail to Mrs. Amelia Barstow at once. He also instructed the Post
Office clerks to give Officer Hess and his assistant every facility for
corralling the masculine miscreant who was doubtless passing himself for
a woman in his nefarious correspondence; (no female had ever applied for
letters under the name of Mrs. Amelia Barstow.) The decoy letter came
back in due time, and was taken out by Mr. Powers while Mr. Hess was
absent at lunch, but the clerk who officiates in the ladies' department
at the Post Office took such a minute mental photograph of him, that the
officer had no difficulty in following after and detecting his man in
the street, from the description given of him. After walking around town
for some time, Powers finally opened the letter, read it, and replaced
it in his pocket. Hess entered into conversation with him, and in answer
to certain questions, the fellow said he had no appointment to meet
Mrs. Barstow at any particular place--expected to stumble on her in the
street; said he had no particular occupation; was in the habit of taking
her letters from the Post Office for her. It took him but a short time
to discover that he was in the hands of an officer, and then his replies
became decidedly non-committal. Hess asked him if he wrote the letter
signed "Mrs. Aurelia Barstow." Powers said, "If I were to say I did,
what would be done with me? what could you make out of it?" When asked
if Mrs. Barstow would come and clear him of suspicion if she knew he was
about to suffer for an offence committed by her, he caught at the idea,
and said she would; the thoughtless numskull even eagerly wrote her a
note, which the officer was to deliver to her after accomplishing the
hopeless task of finding her. That act furnished the officer all the
information he lacked, and enabled him to "rest his case," but it ruined
the unthinking Powers--for behold, the first words of the note, "MRS.
AMELIA BARSTOW," were a perfect facsimile of the name signed to the
letter to the school-girl, and fully convicted him of being the writer
of it. Powers will be tried this morning for offering to sell obscene
pictures, and perhaps for opening other people's letters, and the
chances are that he will be severely dealt with. He deserves it, for any
one acquainted with the impressible nature of young girls, shut out from
the world and doomed to irksome and monotonous school-life, knows
the heightened charm and excitement they find in amusements that are
contraband and have to be secured by risky evasions of the rules, and
is also aware that a whole school might be corrupted by the circulation
among them of a single volume of the lecherous trash dealt in by Mr.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 6, 1864


Last evening, in the absence of Coroner Sheldon, Justice Tobin held
an inquest at the office of the Coroner, to inquire into the facts
connected with the death of James Fitzgerald, private in Company D,
Third Artillery, who was killed by a fellow-soldier named Kennedy, at
Black Point, early on the morning of Thursday, the 3d instant. Three
witnesses were examined who were on the spot at the time. The facts were
substantially as stated in yesterday's Call, except that not so much was
said about his insanity. A simple statement of the facts adduced on
the inquest would be about as follows: About half-past one o'clock on
Thursday morning, Fitzgerald was placed in the guard-house, Kennedy
having been there for some time previous. Fitzgerald being without his
blankets, Kennedy told him to come and share his. Deceased, however,
went and laid down on the floor. The room was almost perfectly dark.
About two o'clock in the morning, Fitzgerald got up and went to where
one Michael Condol (also under guard) was lying, and whispered in his
ear, telling him to turn over, he wanted to feel him; at the same time,
he drew his hand across Condol's throat. Condol told him to go to his
own bunk. Kennedy then placed his hand on Condol's breast, and raised
something over him which in the darkness Condol took to be a dagger; he
seized it and discovered that it was a bayonet. A struggle commenced, in
which Kennedy succeeded in planting a thrust into Condol's arm. He cried
out that he was stabbed, and called for a light, but the inmates of the
room had become panic-stricken and crowded off to the corners. In the
struggle with Kennedy, Condol kicked him, forcing him over towards
the wall. He fell on Fitzgerald (deceased) and commenced stabbing him.
Deceased cried out, "I'm murdered." The corporal outside hearing the
noise, rushed to the guard-room, and as he opened the door, Kennedy
and two other prisoners forced their way out, throwing him down on the
ground. He went in with a light and saw deceased lying on the floor in a
dying condition. He had twelve wounds on the body and four on the head.
Of four of those on the body, penetrating the heart, lungs, liver,
stomach, and large and small intestines, either one would have produced
death; the rest were flesh wounds. One of the fatal wounds was made on
the thigh, severing the femoral artery. Kennedy was generally considered
a sensible and harmless man, though he seemed rather disposed to shun
his comrades. On one occasion, about a month since, while at Alcatraz,
he expressed an apprehension that he was going to be hanged. On one
or two other occasions he made "curious remarks." The day prior to the
killing he broke out of the guard-house and ran down to Captain Winder's
quarters. He said he wanted to see a clergyman, and must go to town. He
was not generally considered insane, though he had curious ways, and
the Corporal said he did not think he was altogether right. It was about
half past three o'clock in the morning when Fitzgerald died. Deceased
was a native of Limerick, Ireland, and aged about thirty-six years.

The jury returned a verdict in accordance with the facts.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 7, 1864


There is a nice little breeze between the practitioners who were called
on in the case of Ferguson, said to have taken strychnia, lately, to end
his life, but was prevented by Dr. De Castro. Dr. Elliott, as a cloud of
witnesses state, was first called, and gave up the case, saying "he
(the patient) was a dead boy;" in other words, recovery was hopeless.
De Castro was then called, and as the same witnesses state, found the
unhappy Ferguson in the throes of death. He emeticized, purged and
pumped him, till the poison had no show, and felt a little justifiable
pride at his success. Now, Dr. Elliott says he was not poisoned at all;
that the druggist, when the patient applied for the noxious drug, "to
kill a dog," suspected his design, and gave him some comparatively
harmless preparation--piperine, or something of that sort--and that De
Castro was humbugged. He furnishes an analysis from Chemist Dickey, of
the drug said to be furnished by the apothecary, in proof. De Castro
thinks the fact that the man was swollen fearfully, and almost lifeless
when he saw him, and also the druggist Riley's statement that he did
furnish the deadly article, and marked it "strychnia--poison, ten
grains," proof more convincing on his side. Thus the matter stands. Who
can decide when Doctors disagree?

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 7, 1864


Yesterday at eleven o'clock in the forenoon, Emanuel Lopus, barber, of
room No. 23, Mead House, wrote to the idol of his soul that he loved
her better than all else beside; that unto him the day was dark, the
sun seemed swathed in shadows, when she was not by; that he was going to
take the life that God had given him, and enclosed she would please
find one lock of hair, the same being his. He then took a teaspoonful of
laudanum in a gallon of gin, and lay down to die. That is one version of
it. Another is, that he really took an honest dose of laudanum, and was
really anxious to put his light out; so much so, indeed, that after Dr.
Murphy had come, resolved to pump the poison from his stomach or pump
his heart out in the attempt, and after he had comfortably succeeded in
the first mentioned proposition, this desperate French barber rose up
and tried to whip the surgeon for saving his life, and defeating his
fearful purpose, and wasting his laudanum. Another version is, that he
went to his friend Jullien, in the barber shop under the Mead House, and
told him to smash into his trunk after he had breathed his last and
shed his immortal soul, and take from it his professional soap, and his
lather-brush and his razors, and keep them forever to remember him by,
for he was going this time without reserve. This was a touching allusion
to his repeated assertions, made at divers and sundry times during the
past few years, that he was going off immediately and commit suicide.
Jullien paid no attention to him, thinking he was only drunk, as usual,
and that his better judgment would prompt him to substitute his regular
gin at the last moment, instead of the deadlier poison. But on going
to No. 23 an hour afterwards, he found the wretched Lopus in a heavy
stupor, and all unconscious of the things of earth, and the junk-bottle
and the laudanum phial on the bureau. We have endeavored to move the
sympathy of the public in behalf of this poor Lopus, and we have done
it from no selfish motive, and in no hope of reward, but only out of the
commiseration we feel for one who has been suffering in solitude while
the careless world around him was absorbed in the pursuit of life's
foolish pleasures, heedless whether he lived or died. If we have
succeeded--if we have caused one sympathetic tear to flow from the
tender eye of pity, we desire no richer recompense. They took Lopus
to the station-house yesterday afternoon, and from thence he was
transferred to the French Hospital. We learn that he is getting along
first-rate, now.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 7, 1864


Lucy Adler was arrested and locked up in the city prison last night,
for petty larceny--stealing shoes, ribbons, and small traps of all kinds
exposed for sale in shops. She brought her weeping boy with her--a lad
of nine years, perhaps--and they were followed by a large concourse of
men and boys, whose curiosity was excited to the highest pitch to know
"what was up with the old woman," as they expressed it. The officers,
and also the merchants, say this woman will travel through a dozen
small stores during the afternoon, and go home and "clean up" a perfect
junk-shop as a result of her labors. She cabbages every light article of
merchandise she can get her claws on. She always has her small boy with
her and if she is caught in a theft, the boy comes the sympathy dodge,
and pumps tears and jerks sobs until the pity of the shopman is moved,
and his parent released. The boy is always on hand, and if an officer
snatches the woman she pulls the metaphorical string that turns on the
boy's sympathetic shower bath, and he is all tears and lamentations in a
moment. At any rate, this is what they say of the cunning pair.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 9, 1864


If you have got a house, keep your eye on it, these times, for there is
no knowing what moment it will go tramping around town. We meet these
dissatisfied shanties every day marching boldly through the public
streets on stilts and rollers, or standing thoughtfully in front of
gin shops, or halting in quiet alleys and peering round corners, with a
human curiosity, out of one eye, or one window if you please, upon the
dizzy whirl and roar of commerce in the thoroughfare beyond. The houses
have been taking something lately that is moving them a good deal. It
is very mysterious, and past accounting for, but it cannot be helped.
We have just been informed that an unknown house--two stories, with a
kitchen--has stopped before Shark alley, in Merchant street, and seems
to be calculating the chances of being able to scrouge through it into
Washington street, and thus save the trouble of going around. We hardly
think she can, and we had rather she would not try it; we should
be sorry to see her get herself fast in that crevice, which is the
newspaper reporter's shortest cut to the station house and the courts.
Without wishing to be meddlesome or officious, we would like to
suggest that she would find it very comfortable and nice going round by
Montgomery street, and plenty of room. Besides, there is nothing to be
seen in Shark alley, if she is only on a little pleasure excursion.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 9, 1864


The vagrant house we have elsewhere alluded to as prowling around
Merchant street, near Shark alley--we mean Dunbar alley--finally started
to go around by Montgomery street, but at the first move fell over and
mashed in some windows and broke down a new awning attached to the house
adjoining the "Ivy Green" saloon.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 9, 1864


Mr. Powers, who was arrested the other day for writing to young girls
in the seminaries over the signature of "Mrs. Amelia Barstow," and
soliciting their custom in the obscene picture line, has escaped and
gone into hiding. He went in charge of officer Bowen to confer with
his "attorney" (or his confederate?) and while closeted with that
individual, jumped out of a second-story window--so much so that when
Bowen went after him to take him back, he was nowhere visible to the
naked eye. Mr. Powers tried the same game on officer Hesse, when he
was first arrested, but it failed; Hesse preferred that all private
interviews should be held in his presence. Playing the extreme
confidence game with officers is very old, and very well understood
by most of them. Count Bowen among the latter class hereafter. The
aforesaid "counsel" will be arrested to-day for complicity in the escape
of the prisoner.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 10, 1864


A runaway buggy (at any rate the horse attached to it was running away
and the buggy was taking a good deal of interest in it,) came into
collision with a dray, yesterday, in Montgomery street, and the dray was
not damaged any to speak of. The buggy was; the hub was mashed clear
out of one wheel, and another wheel was turned inside out--so that it
"dished" the wrong way. The cripple was entirely new, and belonged to
Duff and Covert, California street. In meeting a dray, or a heavy truck
wagon, buggies should always turn out to one side, being safer than to
go between it.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 10, 1864


Judge Shepheard said yesterday, with reference to the case of Kennedy,
the soldier who killed a fellow soldier at Black Point on Thursday last,
that he would hold over the examination for three days, to give the
military authorities an opportunity of making a formal demand of the
prisoner, to be tried by a Court Martial, a claim to the exclusive
jurisdiction over the case having been heretofore signified by them.
We are assured, however, that the military authorities do not desire to
take the case out of the hands of the civil authorities. And
besides, two serious obstacles might be interposed as against such a
jurisdiction. In the first place the prisoner is evidently insane, and
was so at the time the murder was committed; Fitzgerald being, it
is reported, the third victim to his terrible fits; and there is
no provision of our laws, authorizing a Military Court to act as a
commission de inquirendo. And in the next place, there is a question
about the title of the United States Government to the property at Black
Point, the title to which is now being litigated, which fact might so
affect it as a military reservation as to throw a strong shade of doubt
over the supremacy of the military law within those particular limits.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 10, 1864


When the Branch Mint was established in this city, it was upon the
calculation that its annual coinage would amount to about five millions.
Upon that supposition, its organization as to number of officials,
accommodation, and the pay of the employees, was fixed. Although
the coinage has about quadrupled what was calculated upon, neither
accommodations, employes nor compensation have been increased. On the
contrary, the pay is now in green-backs instead of gold, and the payment
often delayed, as at present, for four months, through inefficiency
on the part of some one in Washington. However, Congress made an
appropriation at its last session for a new Mint here, and we hope that
something may come of it different from the present miserable kennel
called a Mint, and that something may also be done for the relief of the
unpaid men and women who perform the labors of the institution. Herewith
we give a synopsis of the business done by the Branch Mint in this city
for the last twelve months. It will be seen that, instead of five, the
coinage has been nearly twenty millions:




[Total] $19,536,809.00





Gain of 1863-4 over 1862-3--$ 985,210.32

Loss of Silver, $572,229.68. Gain of Gold, $1,557,440.00.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 10, 1864


The names of those concerned in it are suppressed, and it is a matter of
no consequence anyhow, but the foundation of the fight is of interest to
some, as showing how the business of intelligence offices is some
times conducted, in evasion of the law, but not in violation of it. The
statute says that the keeper of the office must, in return for the money
received from his customer, give him a receipt, in which the nature
of the service rendered must be specified. This is done in this wise:
"Received of John Doe, two dollars and fifty cents, for services
rendered in procuring him a situation as stable-boy." That is according
to law, and if John Doe goes to the stable and is refused the situation,
he can make the intelligence man refund his money. But the latter takes
no such chances. To the receipt he adds the following postscript, which
blocks the game on the stable-boy, in spite of the statute: "If you are
denied the situation, your money will be refunded upon the presentation
here of a written statement of the fact of the refusal by the parties
so refusing." The "parties" will not trouble themselves with writing
communications for stable-boys and servant girls to intelligence office
keepers, and without the ceremonious "written statement," the noble
dealer in occupations will not disgorge. He sticks to his contract.
The result of this practice is, that every day the District Attorney
is besieged by frantic chambermaids and blasphemous cooks and wood
choppers, seeking redress for the wrongs they have suffered at the hands
of the intelligence office keepers; but they go away without it. The law
is a wonderful machine, and few there be that understand it; they say
it does not cover the case we have spoken of, at all. This having
been ascertained by a victim, yesterday, he went back to his chuckling
spoiler and whaled him.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 11, 1864



Last evening some fifty persons, perhaps, chiefly of the Copperhead
persuasion, assembled in the "Democratic Club Room," on the corner of
Stockton and Filbert streets, for the purpose of effervescing a little.
"Conservative Democratic" imaginations pictured it a grand rally of
persecuted and hunted down patriots. A rational person saw nothing there
but aberrated beings, hugging the bugbear of martyrdom and iterating the
formula laid down by the secret agents of Jeff. Davis' Government. We do
not propose to give a detailed report of their proceedings; it wouldn't
pay. One speech is a type of the whole. It is only Secession and
Treason, modified in expression according to the rational caution and
shrewdness of the speaker. Mr. Brown, the inevitable Beriah, was there,
of course, and of course he spoke; but as he holds the leading string of
"conservatism" in this vicinity, the practice of extreme caution has
at length almost perfected the faculty of couching treason in loyal
phrases, or at least evading, with consummate tact, the danger of

MR. BROWN'S SPEECH.--Mr. Brown said that he did not feel able to make,
at that time, an effort proportioned to the importance of the occasion,
for all his energies were spent in fighting their battles. He didn't go
there to make a speech, but "to look into their (Copperhead) faces, to
receive the assurance that Democracy was not dead." Upon which equivocal
announcement of the party's vitality, there was a stamping of feet by
several indiscreet persons. Discriminating ones saw therein a confession
that Copperheads were sickly hereabouts, and look sad, like mourners
at a funeral. The speaker proceeded, with faultless attitude and
gesticulation and a countenance beaming with the light that is supposed
to foreshadow posthumous glories of the immolated hero, to state that he
couldn't argue with his opponents in the present conflict; there was
no issue; if there was he couldn't see it; didn't know how to frame an
argument. Doubtless Alcatraz frowning just in sight of his position,
bothered his powers of composition. Syntax gives botheration, when the
soul of the rhetoric is to be something that must not be expressed, for
fear of disastrous consequences. All the old issues, he went on to say,
were gone, the conditions that formerly divided the parties and kept up
the bonfires of party strife, and there was now but a single question;
one which admitted of no argument; a question of brute force; whether
we had a Government, or were the subjects of despotism. Then came in
the inevitable stereotyped hobby of "inalienable rights," referring
specifically to a number of the propositions of the Declaration of
Independence. He pointed the "Conservative element" to their melancholy
state of discomfiture, and told them there was but one thing left for
them to do; that was to adhere to their principles, associate, organize
and--protest. They could do nothing more; there was no argument. Then
Beriah put a strong case. He asked them: What if they should get up some
morning and find one of their number mysteriously missing; one whom they
loved, and to whom they had been used to looking for counsel; and the
next morning another should be gone in like manner; and another and
another, and so on indefinitely, without warning, and no one knew
whither or for what end they were taken away; they would feel badly,
they would gather in groups, with pallor in their countenances, and
bated breath, and bite their lips with vexation. They would want to know
what had become of those loved ones. It would arouse the feelings and
impulses of every Copperhead in the community. At this juncture Mr.
Lincoln suffered at Beriah's hands a comparison which we have not room
to give in full; said many things savoring strongly of what opens the
gates of Alcatraz, and meekly observed that what he was then uttering
might deprive him of his liberties; verifying the old adage of "A
guilty conscience," etc. He said that the Administration asked them to
surrender their liberties for a time, to preserve the Government; he
wanted to know what a Government was worth without liberty, (Applause,)
and more of the same sort. The people of the United States were then
damagingly compared to Turks. Mr. Brown warned them to beware of
surrendering their liberties. "Liberties once surrendered could only be
recovered at a bloody sacrifice; the price of liberty won from tyranny
is the blood of the patriot." As for his part, he didn't propose to
surrender; their liberties should only be surrendered with their lives.

Beriah entertained his "small but appreciative" audience for about
thirty minutes, in which he adroitly exhibited the virtues of resistance
to the arbitrary measures of the Administration, all of whose measures
were arbitrary; and yielded the floor.

A resolution was then adopted by the meeting, which as adopted, proposed
to instruct the delegates from the Second District to the County
Committee to take steps to have our citizens protected from military
arrests, to apply to the Governor to give us the protection of the civil
law of the State.

A second set of resolutions were then presented, which were somewhat
rich. They conjured all good Democrats to withdraw their support and
patronage from all newspapers that were inimical to their policy, and to
exert their influence against the influence of such papers, generally;
the Morning Call, Alta, and Bulletin, specifically. Then followed a
resolution holding up Messrs. Towne & Bacon to the scorn and contempt of
all good Copperheads, and advising them to steer clear of their printing
establishment, as "adverse to Democratic money," because they, the said
Towne & Bacon, had proscribed good "Union-loving Democrats."

We were in hopes that the resolutions would have passed in that shape,
but the glare of inconsistency hurt Mr. Brown's eyes, and he hoped the
adoption of those resolutions would be deferred until the phraseology
could be altered so as to preserve the spirit and intent, but have the
appearance of inconsistency hid in more subtle "verbiage." The idea did
not at first penetrate the copper-coated intellects of the "Club," but
Beriah must be right, so they assented, and hypocrisy is to be added to
inconsistency, for their stomachs to receive.

The President of the Club then observed that some people had denied that
there were any speakers among them--thereby intimating that so far
the assertion had not been negatived, which made Beriah think that
Copperheads were unappreciative and stupid, for hadn't he just sat down?
And to prove the contrary, he called upon a man named Kirtland to give
them a little more of the same he had favored them with before.

After a little hesitation, Kirtland stepped forth, and there was

A SECCESSIONIST edifying the Club with the same he had told them before.
We did intend to report his speech, and took some notes, but, before
proceeding far, he openly avowed himself a Southerner, with Southern
feelings, and entertaining a Southern view of the question, and we
paused. His speech was rampant, unmeaning, superficial rant not even
worthy the name of sophistry. Had it emanated from a Northern man,
who had any influence to fear, it would have consigned its author to
Alcatraz. But, as it was only the impotent ravings of one who knew where
a display of heroism would be safe, neither the speech nor the speaker
challenge attention. This man was followed by a Mr. Farrel, whom we did
not remain to hear.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 12, 1864


Night before last, a stick six or seven feet long, attached to an
exploded rocket of large size came crashing down through the zinc roof
of a tenement in Milton Place, Bush street, between Dupont and Kearny,
passed through a cloth ceiling, and fetched up on the floor alongside of
a gentleman's bed, with a smash like the disruption of a china shop. We
have been told by a person with whom we are not acquainted, and of whose
reliability we have now no opportunity of satisfying ourselves, as he
has gone to his residence, which is situated on the San Jose road at
some distance from the city, that when the rocket tore up the splinters
around the bed, the gentleman got up. The person also said that he went
out--adding after some deliberation, and with the air of a man who has
made up his mind that what he is about to say can be substantiated if
necessary, that "he went out quick." This person also said that after
the gentleman went out quick, he ran--and then with a great show of
disinterestedness, he ventured upon the conjecture that he was running
yet. He hastened to modify this rash conjecture, however, by observing
that he had no particular reason for suspecting that the gentleman was
running yet--it was only a notion of his, and just flashed on him, like.
He then hitched up his team, which he observed parenthetically that he
wished they belonged to him, but they didn't and immediately drove away
in the direction of his country seat. The tenement is there yet, though,
with the hole through the zinc roof. The tenement is the property of
ex-Supervisor Hinckley, and some of the best educated men in the city
consider that the hole is also, because it is on his premises. It is a
very good hole. If it could be taken from the roof just in the shape it
is now, it would be a nice thing to show at the Mechanics' Fair; any man
who would make a pun under circumstances like these, and suggest that it
be turned over to the Christian Commission Fair on account of its holy
nature, might think himself smart, but would the people--the plodding,
thinking, intelligent masses--would these respect him? Far be it.
Doubtless. What shadows we are, and what shadows we pursue. The
foregoing facts are written to prepare the reader for the announcement
that the stick, with the same exploded rocket attached, may be seen at
the hall of the Board of Supervisors. It has remained there to this day.
The man who set it off, and hung on to it, and went up with it, has not
come down yet. The people who live in Milton Place are expecting him,
all the time. They have moved their families, and got out of the way,
so as to give him a good show when he drops. They have said, but without
insisting on it, that if it would be all the same to him, they would
rather he would fall in the alley. This would mash him up a good deal,
likely, and scatter him around some, but they think they could scrape
him up and hold an inquest on him, and inform his parents. The Board of
Supervisors will probably pass an ordinance directing that missiles
of the dangerous nature of rockets shall henceforth be fired in the
direction of the Bay, so as to guard against accidents to life and

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 13, 1864


A pile of miscellaneous articles was found heaped up at a late hour last
night away down somewhere in Harrison street, which attracted the notice
of numbers of passers-by, and divers attempts were made to analyze the
same without effect, for the reason that no one could tell where to
begin, or which was on top. Two Special Policemen dropped in just then
and solved the difficulty, showing a clean inventory of one horse, one
buggy, two men and an indefinite amount of liquor. The liquor couldn't
be got at to be gauged, consequently the proof of it couldn't be told;
the men, though, were good proof that the liquor was there, for they
were as drunk as Bacchus and his brother. A fight had been on hand
somewhere, and one of the men had been close to it, for his face was
painted up in various hues, sky-blue and crimson being prominent. The
order of the buggy was inverted, and the horse beyond a realizing sense
of his condition. The men went with some noise to the station-house,
and the animal, with attachments, being set to rights, ambled off to a
livery stable on Kearny street.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 13, 1864


A whole bevy of those funny-looking animals that totter through the
Street labelled "Chinese Women," had been invited to call upon Judge
Shepheard yesterday morning, when they would hear something to their
disadvantage. These Taepings were charged with tappings, and as
they didn't appear, the Judge charged them for it, and much bail was
forfeited. There were about a dozen cases. The offence is simply a
conventional sign of invitation to persons passing, to walk in, and
grows out of the characteristic hospitality of that class of persons.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 16, 1864


Yesterday morning, Rufus Temple was examined before Judge Shepheard on
a charge of obtaining money under false pretences, and acquitted. We are
disposed to make a specific and more extended reference to this matter
than its importance would seem to demand, from the fact that Mr. Temple
is said to be an honest, industrious young man, who has been placed in
an unfavorable light before the public by being arraigned in a Court of
Justice on a criminal charge. The testimony, which signally failed to
sustain the charge, went simply to show that the defendant, who follows
the trade of a caulker, had been employed by Mr. Vice (the prosecuting
witness) to do some extra work on the steamer Nina Tilden; that Temple
presented a bill of thirty dollars to Mr. V. for this work, which
was for some reason refused, upon which the bill was presented to Mr.
Tilden, the owner or one of the owners of the vessel, who remarked, in
substance, that he was not the proper person to pay such bills, but, as
he did not wish any claims to stand against the vessel, he would pay it,
which he did, taking Mr. Temple's receipt there for. Upon learning the
fact of the payment, Mr. Vice saw the city prosecutor, and a verified
complaint was made, embodying the averment that Temple had represented
to Mr. Tilden that he was sent to him (Tilden) with a verbal order from
affiant for the payment of the bill. Mr. Tilden, who was a witness for
the prosecution, denied, on his oath, that Temple had made any such
representation, and that fact being the gist of the offence, the
prosecution was at once abandoned. We cannot but speak in terms of the
strongest condemnation of the reprehensible manner in which parties
very frequently come into the Police Court, under the sanction of the
Prosecuting Attorney. With all of perjury except the technical animus,
they seek to wield this tribunal as a mollifier of their personal
feelings, as if it were instituted as a general dispenser of the lex
talionis. It is indeed a fortunate thing for the community that we have
just such a man as Judge Shepheard on the bench, where discrimination
and decision are so much required.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 17, 1864


At the meeting of the Board of Education last evening, Mr. Pope
complained that he had been misrepresented by the reporter for the
Call, as well as by the Secretary of the Board in his minutes, in the
statements of his resolution introduced at the last meeting, on the
subject of the participation by the pupils of the different Schools
in the exercises of the Freedman's Concert. Mr. Pope says that his
resolution was not to require the Grammar class, that had declined to
participate on that occasion, to do so against their will, but to inform
the members of that class that if they did so decline, they would be
required to continue their usual daily exercises in School. If this was
Mr. Pope's statement, he may have the benefit of it, though the fact
that both the reporter and the Secretary of the Board, who are both
presumed to be, and really are close listeners to the proceedings of the
body, should understand the Director exactly alike, and fall into
the same identical error, is, to say the least, a very extraordinary
coincidence. Whatever may have been the exact phraseology of the
gentleman's motion, the evident intention of the measure and the
disposition of more than one member of the Board was certainly expressed
in our report and the Secretary's minutes. However, as we entertain no
feelings of hostility toward any member of the Board, we, in our own
individual reportorial capacity, will concede, retract or admit anything
in the world, "for the sake of the argument," and to keep peace in the
family. But understand we don't mean it all, nor near it.



A man fell off his own dray--or rather it was a large truck-wagon--in
Davis street, yesterday, and the fore wheels passed over his body. A
bystander stopped the horses and they backed the same wheels over the
man's body a second time; after which he crawled out, jumped on the
wagon, muttered something about being "tired of sich d--d foolishness,"
and drove off before a surgeon could arrive to amputate him!

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 18, 1864



Yesterday afternoon about half past two o'clock, a pawnbroker named
Meyer, whose establishment is in Commercial street, below Kearny, went
out and left his son Henry, a youth of eighteen or twenty, perhaps, to
attend to the business during his absence. Upon returning, half an
hour later, he found pools of blood here and there, a knife and
double-barrelled shot gun on the floor--the latter weapon parted from
its stock--several trays of watches, diamonds and various kinds of
jewelry gone, the doors of the safe open, its drawers pulled out and
despoiled of their contents--disorder visible everywhere, but his son
nowhere to be seen! Hearing a faint groan, he ran into the back room,
and there in the gloom he discerned his boy, lying on the floor and
weltering in blood. Now, after reading the above, the public will
know exactly as much about this ghastly mystery as the Police know--as
anybody knows, except the murderer himself. So far as heard from, nobody
was seen to enter the store during Mr. Meyer's absence, and nobody was
seen to leave. The assassin did his work between half-past two and three
o'clock in the afternoon, in the busiest portion of one of the busiest
thoroughfares of the city, and departed unseen, and left no sign by
which his identity may hereafter be established. Up to the present
writing the boy has only groaned in pain and is speechless. We reached
the spot a few minutes after the tragedy was discovered, and found the
street in front blockaded by a crowd of men staring at the premises
in blank fascination, and entering, found another crowd composed of
policemen, doctors, detectives, and reporters, engaged as such people
are usually engaged upon such occasions. The boy's body and his bunk
were deluged in blood, and efforts were being made to relieve his
sufferings. There was apparently but one wound upon him, and that had
been inflicted on the back of his head, behind his right ear. The skull
was indented as if by a slung-shot. Probably neither the knife nor
the gun found upon the floor were used in the assault. Near one of the
windows in the front office closely curtained against observation from
the street--was a pool of gouted blood, as large as a chair-seat; and
the blow was given there, no doubt, for from that spot a roadway was
marked in the dust of the floor to the extreme end of the back room
where the body was found, showing that after he was knocked senseless,
the robbers must have dragged him to that spot, to guard against his
attracting attention by making an outcry. Mr. Meyer says the valuables
carried off by the daring perpetrators of the outrage, are worth about
eight thousand dollars. A man came in while we were present, and
told Capt. Lees that about the time he saw the crowd running toward
Commercial street, he met a man in Kearny street, running as if
destruction were at his heels; that he broke frantically through a
blockade of wagons, carriages, and a funeral procession, sped on his way
and was out of sight in a moment; that he was thick set, about five feet
seven or eight inches in stature, wore dark clothing, a black slouch
hat, and had a sort of narrow goatee; that he had improvised a sack out
of an old calico dress, the neck of which sack he grasped in his hand,
and had the surplus calico wrapped round his arm; the appearance of the
said sack was as if it might have a hat-full of eggs in it--two dozen,
or thereabouts, you might say. Five minutes after the conclusion of the
narrative, we observed the man who saw all this, speeding up town in a
buggy with a detective. At the Chief's office, fifteen minutes after the
discovery of the bloody catastrophe, Mr. Burke's campaign commenced, and
he was dictating orders to a small army of Policemen, with a decision
and rapidity commensurate with the urgency of the occasion: You, and
you, and you, go to the Stockton and Sacramento boats and arrest every
Chinaman and every suspicious white man that tries to go on board; you,
and you, go to the San Jose Railroad--same order; you go to the stable
and order two fleet horses to be saddled and sent here instantly; you,
and you, and you, go to the heads of the Chinese Companies and tell them
to detain every suspicious Chinaman they see, and send me word; I'll be
responsible." And so on, and so forth, until squads of Policemen were
scattering abroad through every portion of the city, and closing every
prominent avenue of escape from it. An affair like this makes hurrying
times in the Police Department. After all, the wonder is that an
enterprise like this robbery and attempted assassination has
not previously been essayed in Mr. Meyer's and other pawnbroking
establishments. They are not frequented by customers in the day-time,
and the glass doors and windows are rendered untransparent by thick
coats of paint, and also by curtains that are always closed, so that
nothing that transpires within can be seen from the street. One or two
active men could enter such a place at night, gag the occupants, turn
the gas nearly out, and take their own time about robbing the concern,
for customers would not be apt to molest an establishment through whose
shaded windows no light appeared.

Up to eleven o'clock last night, young Meyer was still irrational,
although he had spoken incoherently several times of matters foreign to
the misfortune that had befallen him. We have this from Dr. Murphy,
his physician, who saw him at that hour. The Doctor says the wound
was evidently inflicted with a slung-shot. Its form is an egg-shaped
indentation at the base of the brain. There are also the distinct marks
of four fingers and a thumb on the throat, made by the left hand of the
man who assaulted him. (Whose left hand among ye will fit those marks?)
The patient can only swallow with great difficulty, on account of the
fearful choking he received, and the consequent swelling and soreness of
the glands of the throat. He suffers chiefly, however, from the pressing
of the indented skull upon the brain. His condition improves a little
all the time, and, although the chances are nearly all against his
recovery, still that result is regarded as comfortably within the
margin of possibility. Unless he comes to his senses, it will be next
to impossible ever to establish the guilt of any man suspected of this
crime. An ordinary deed of blood excites only a passing interest in San
Francisco, but to show how much a little mystery enhances the importance
of such an occurrence, we will mention that at no time, from three
o'clock in the afternoon, yesterday, until midnight, was there a moment
when there was not a crowd in front of Meyer's store, gazing at its
darkened windows and closed and guarded doors. During the afternoon
and night, several white men were arrested about town on suspicion, and
seventy-two Chinamen were detained from leaving on the boats until after
the hour for sailing. The right man is doubtless at large yet, however.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 19, 1864


To-day the Ning-Yong Company will finish furnishing and decorating the
new Josh house, or place of worship, built by them in Broadway,
between Dupont and Kearny streets, and to-morrow they will begin their
unchristian devotions in it. The building is a handsome brick edifice,
two stories high on Broadway, and three on the alley in the rear; both
fronts are of pressed brick. A small army of workmen were busily engaged
yesterday, in putting on the finishing touches of the embellishments.
The throne of the immortal Josh is at the head of the hall in the
third story, within a sort of alcove of elaborately carved and gilded
woodwork, representing human figures and birds and beasts of all degrees
of hideousness. Josh himself is as ugly a monster as can be found
outside of China. He is in a sitting posture, is of about middle
stature, but excessively fat; his garments are flowing and ample,
garnished with a few small circlets of looking-glass, to represent
jewels, and streaked and striped, daubed from head to foot, with paints
of the liveliest colors. A long strand of black horsehair sprouts from
each corner of his upper lip, another from the centre of his chin, and
one from just forward of each ear. He wears an open-work crown, which
gleams with gold leaf. His rotund face is painted a glaring red, and the
general expression of this fat and happy god is as if he had eaten too
much rice and rats for dinner, and would like his belt loosened if he
only had the energy to do it. In front of the throne hangs a chandelier
of Chinese manufacture, with a wilderness of glass drops and curved
candle supports about it; but it is not as elegant and graceful as the
American article. Under it, in a heavy frame-work, a big church bell
is hung, also of Chinese workmanship; it is carved and daubed with
many-colored paint all over. In front of the bell, three long tables
are ranged, the fronts of two of which display a perfect maze-work of
carving. The principal one shows, behind a glass front, several hundred
splendidly gilded figures of kings on thrones, and bowing and smirking
attendants, and horses on the rampage. The figures in this huge carved
picture stand out in bold relief from the background, but they are not
stuck on. The whole concern is worked out of a single broad slab of
timber, and only the cunning hand of a Chinaman could have wrought it.
Over the forward table is suspended a sort of shield, of indescribable
shape, whose face is marked in compartments like a coat of arms, and
in each of these is another nightmare of burnished and distorted human
figures. The ceiling of this room, and both sides of it, are adorned
with great sign boards, (they look like that to a content Christian,
at any rate,) bearing immense Chinese letters or characters, sometimes
raised from the surface of the wood and sometimes cut into it, and
sometimes these letters being painted a bright red or green, and the
grand expanse of sign board blazing with gold-leaf, or vice versa. These
signs are presents to the Church from other companies, and they bear the
names of those corporations, and possibly some extravagant Chinese moral
or other, though if the latter was the case we failed to prove it by Ah
Wae, our urbane and intelligent interpreter. Up and down the room, on
both sides, are ranged alternate chairs and tables, made of the
same hard, close-grained black wood used in the carved tables above
mentioned; devout pagans lean their elbows on these little side tables,
and swill tea while they worship Josh. Now, humble and unpretending
Christian as we are, there was something infinitely comfortable and
touching to us in this gentle mingling together of piety and breakfast.
They have a large painted drum, and a pig or two, in this temple. How
would it strike you, now, to stand at one end of this room with ranks
of repentant Chinamen extending down either side before you, sipping
purifying tea, and all about and above them a gorgeous cloud of glaring
colors and dazzling gold and tinsel, with the bell tolling, and the
drums thundering, and the gongs clanging, and portly, blushing old Josh
in the distance, smiling upon it all, in his imbecile way, from out
his splendid canopy? Nice perhaps? In the second story there are more
painted emblems and symbols than we could describe in a week. In the
first story are six long white slats (in a sort of vault) split into
one hundred and fifty divisions, each like the keys of a piano, and this
affair is the death-register of the Ning-Yong Company. When a man dies,
his name, age, his native place in China, and the place of his death
in this country, are inscribed on one of these keys, and the record is
always preserved. Ah Wae tells us that the Ning-Yong Company numbers
eighteen or twenty thousand persons on this coast, now, and has numbered
as high as twenty-eight thousand. Ah Wae speaks good English, and is the
outside business man of the tribe--that is, he transacts matters with us
barbarians. He will occupy rooms and offices in the temple, as will
also the great Wy Gah, the ineffable High Priest of the temple, and Sing
Song, or President of the Ning-Yong Company. The names of the temple,
inscribed over its doors, are, "Ning Yong Chu Oh," and "Ning Yong Wae
Quong;" both mean the same thing, but one is more refined and elegant,
and is suited to a higher and more cultivated class of Chinese than the
other--though to our notion they appear pretty much the same thing, as
far as facility of comprehending them is concerned. To-morrow the temple
will be opened, and all save Chinese will be excluded from it until
about the 5th of September, when white folks will be free to visit it,
due notice having first been given in the newspapers, and a general
invitation extended to the public.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 19, 1864


Since the recent extraordinary expose of the concerns of the Grass
Silver Mining Valley Company, by which Stockholders discovered, to their
grief and dismay, that figures could lie as to what became of some of
their assessments, and could also be ominously reticent as to what
went with the balance, people have begun to discuss the possibility of
inventing a plan by which they may be advised, from time to time, of
the manner in which their money is being expended by officers of mining
companies, to the end that they may seasonably check any tendency
towards undue extravagance or dishonest expenditures that may manifest
itself, instead of being compelled to wait a year or two in ignorance
and suspense, to find at last that they have been bankrupted to no
purpose. And it is time their creative talents were at work in this
direction. The longer they sleep the dread sleep of the Grass Valley,
the more terrible will be the awakening from it. Money is being
squandered with a recklessness that knows no limit--that had a
beginning, but seemingly hath no end, save a beggarly minority of
dividend-paying companies--and after these years of expectation and this
waste of capital, what account of stewardship has been rendered unto the
flayed stock holder? What does he know about the disposition that has
been made of his money? What brighter promise has he now than in any
by-gone time that he is not to go on hopelessly paying assessments and
wondering what becomes of them, until Gabriel sounds his trumpet?
The Hale & Norcross officers decide to sink a shaft. They levy forty
thousand dollars. Next month they have a mighty good notion to go lower,
and they levy a twenty thousand dollar assessment. Next month, the
novelty of sinking the shaft has about worn off, and they think it would
be nice to drift a while--twenty thousand dollars. The following month
it occurs to them it would be so funny to pump a little--and they buy a
forty thousand dollar pump. Thus it goes on for months and months, but
the Hale & Norcross sends us no bullion, though most of the time there
is an encouraging rumor afloat that they are "right in the casing!" Take
the Chollar Company, for instance. It seems easy on its children just
now, but who does not remember its regular old monotonous assessment
anthem? "Sixty dollars a foot! sixty dollars a foot! sixty dollars a
foot!" month in and month out, till the persecuted stockholder howled
again. The same way with the Best & Belcher, and the same way with
three-fourths of the mines on the main lead, from Cedar Hill to Silver
City. We could scarcely name them all in a single article, but we have
given a specimen or so by which the balance may be measured. And what
has gone with the money? We pause (a year or two) for a reply. Now,
in some of the States, all banks are compelled to publish a monthly
statement of their affairs. Why not make the big mining companies do the
same thing? It would make some of them fearfully sick at first, but they
would feel all the better for it in the long-run. The Legislature is not
in session, and a law to this effect cannot now be passed; but if one
company dare voluntarily to set the example, the balance would follow by
pressure of circumstances. But that first bold company does not exist,
perhaps; if it does, a grateful community will be glad to hear from it.
Where is it? Let it come forward and offer itself as the sacrificial
scape-goat to bear the sins of its fellows into the wilderness.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 20, 1864


This accomplished old gin-barrel came out of the County Jail early in
the morning three days ago, and was promptly in the station-house, drunk
as a loon, before the middle of the day. She got out the next day,
but was in again before night. She got out the following morning, but
yesterday noon she was back again, with her noble heart preserved in
spirits, as usual. Having a full cargo aboard by this time, she will
probably clear for her native land in the County Jail to-day.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 20, 1864


Yesterday afternoon a Commission was engaged in the United States
District Court room, taking testimony in the criminal proceedings
instituted against Luther Hopkins, Master of the American ship Carlisle,
for brutally treating Andrew Anderson, one of the ship's crew. The
affidavit of the prosecuting witness states that on the 2d April, 1864,
Captain Hopkins cruelly beat him with a belaying pin, while he was
sick, inflicting serious injuries on him; and also, on the 27th April,
Anderson being still sick Hopkins, the defendant, beat him on the
head with a belaying pin; and again, on the 27th June, still being an
invalid, he was beaten with a heavy, knotted rope, more than twenty
blows, by the Captain of the vessel, who also caused him to be bitten by
a dog. Poor Jack seeks redress and protection in a United States Court.
When the Captain marshals his subordinates, from first officer down
to forty-ninth cook, all dependent on him for the tenure of their
dignities, they will with one voice swear they never saw the Captain do
any such thing--blind as bats--while the poor victim felt it sensibly,
and his quaking comrades in the forecastle saw it distinctly enough. It
would be a hard thing should a Captain be punished for merely killing a
sailor or two, as a matter of pastime.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 21, 1864


The New Chinese Temple in Broadway--the "Ning Yong Wae Quong" of the
Ning Yong Company, was dedicated to the mighty Josh night before last,
with a general looseness in the way of beating of drums, clanging of
gongs and burning of yellow paper, commensurate with the high importance
of the occasion. In the presence of the great idol, the other day, our
cultivated friend, Ah Wae, informed us that the old original Josh (of
whom the image was only an imitation, a substitute vested with power to
act for the absent God, and bless Chinamen or damn them, according to
the best of his judgment,) lived in ancient times on the Mountain of
Wong Chu, was seventeen feet high, and wielded a club that weighed two
tons; that he died two thousand five hundred years ago, but that he is
all right yet in the Celestial Kingdom, and can come on earth, or appear
anywhere he pleases, at a moment's notice, and that he could come down
here and cave our head in with his club if he wanted to. We hope he
don't want to. Ah Wae told us all that, and we deliver it to the public
just as we got it, advising all to receive it with caution and not bet
on its truthfulness until after mature reflection and deliberation.
As far as we are concerned, we don't believe it, for all it sounds so

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 21, 1864


MINING COMPANIES' ACCOUNTS.--The Morning Call of yesterday has a lively
article on Mining Companies, suggesting that Mining Trustees should
publish quarterly statements of Expenditures and Receipts, concluding
with: "The Legislature is not in session, and a law to this effect
cannot now be passed; but if one Company dare voluntarily to set the
example, the balance would follow by pressure of circumstances. But
that first bold Company does not exist, perhaps; if it does, a grateful
community will be glad to hear from it. Where is it? Let it come forward
and offer itself as the sacrificial scape-goat to bear the sins of its
fellows into the wilderness."

In answer to this the officers of the Daniel Webster Mining Company,
located in Devil's Gate District, Nevada Territory, have requested us
to inform the shareholders and others who have purchased stock in this
Company at high prices, that a complete exhibit of the Company's affairs
will be made public in the Argus on Saturday next. This Company, in
consequence of a couple of shareholders in Nevada Territory, (legal
gentlemen at that,) paying their previous assessments in green-backs,
has been the first to levy an assessment payable in currency. We
believe, however, they will be the first "who dare" to make public
their accounts. We hope the Coso will be the next to follow suit, as a
correspondent of ours, in Sacramento, (whose letter appears under the
appropriate heading,) seems anxious to learn what has become of the
forty three thousand two hundred dollars collected by this Company for
assessments the last year.--(S. F. Argus, Saturday.)

So there are company officers who are bold enough, fair enough, true
enough to the interests entrusted to their keeping, to let stockholders,
as well as all who may chance to become so, know the character of their
stewardship, and whose records are white enough to bear inspection. We
had not believed it, and we are glad that a Mining Company worthy of the
name of Daniel Webster existed to save to us the remnant of our faith
in the uprightness of these dumb and inscrutable institutions. We have
nothing to fear now; all that was wanting was someone to take the lead.
Other Companies will see that this monthly or quarterly exhibit of their
affairs is nothing but a simple act of justice to their stockholders
and to others who may desire to become so. They will also see that it is
policy to let the public know where invested money will be judiciously
used and strictly accounted for; and, our word for it, Companies that
dare to show their books, will soon fall into line and adopt the system
of published periodical statements. In time it will become a custom, and
custom is more binding, more impregnable, and more exacting than any law
that was ever framed. In that day the Coso will be heard from; and so
will Companies in Virginia, which sport vast and gorgeously-painted
shaft and machinery houses, with costly and beautiful green
chicken-cocks on the roof, which are able to tell how the wind blows,
yet are savagely ignorant concerning dividends. So will other Companies
come out and say what it cost to build their duck ponds; so will still
others tell their stockholders why they paid sixty thousand dollars for
machinery worth about half the money; another that we have in our eye
will show what they did with an expensive lot of timbers, when they
haven't got enough in their mine to shingle a chicken-coop with; and yet
others will let us know if they are still "in the casing," and why they
levy a forty-thousand-dollar assessment every six weeks to run a drift
with. Secretaries, Superintendents, and Boards of Trustees, that don't
like the prospect, had better resign. The public have got precious
little confidence in the present lot, and the public will back this
assertion we are making in its name. Stockholders are very tired of
being at the mercy of omnipotent and invisible officers, and are ripe
for the inauguration of a safer and more sensible state of things.
And when it is inaugurated, mining property will thrive again, and
not before. Confidence is the mainstay of every class of commercial

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 23, 1864


In consequence of the warm, close atmosphere which smothered the city at
two o'clock yesterday afternoon, everybody expected to be shaken out
of their boots by an earthquake before night, but up to the hour of our
going to press the supernatural bootjack had not arrived yet. That
is just what makes it so unhealthy--the earthquakes are getting so
irregular. When a community get used to a thing, they suffer when they
have to go without it. However, the trouble cannot be remedied; we
know of nothing that will answer as a substitute for one of those
convulsions--to an unmarried man.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 23, 1864


One of those singular freaks of Nature which, by reference to the
dictionary, we find described as "the water or the descent of water that
falls in drops from the clouds--shower," occurred here yesterday, and
kept the community in a state of pleasant astonishment for the space
of several hours. They would not have been astonished at an earthquake,
though. Thus it will be observed that nothing accustoms one to a thing
so readily as getting used to it. You will always notice that, in
America. We were thinking this refreshing rain would make everybody
happy. Not so the cows. An agricultural sharp informs us that
yesterday's rain was a misfortune to California--that it will kill the
dry grass upon which the cattle now subsist, and also the young grass
upon which they were calculating to subsist hereafter. We know nothing
what ever about the matter, but we do know that if what this gentleman
says is strictly true, the inevitable deduction is that the cattle are
out of luck. We stand to that.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 23, 1864


Being duly provided with passes, through the courtesy of our cultivated
barbaric friend, Ah Wae, outside business-agent of the Ning Yong
Company, we visited the new Chinese Temple again yesterday, in company
with several friends. After suffocating in the smoke of burning punk and
josh lights, and the infernal odors of opium and all kinds of edibles
cooked in an unchristian manner, until we were becoming imbued with
Buddhism and beginning to lose our nationality, and imbibe, unasked,
Chinese instincts, we finally found Ah Wae, who roused us from our
lethargy and saved us to our religion and our country by merely
breathing the old, touching words, so simple and yet so impressive, and
withal so familiar to those whose blessed privilege it has been to be
reared in the midst of a lofty and humanizing civilization: "How do,
gentlemen--take a drink?" By the magic of that one phrase, our noble
American instincts were spirited back to us again, in all their pristine
beauty and glory. The polished cabinet of wines and liquors stood on
a table in one of the gorgeous halls of the temple, and behold,
an American, with those same noble instincts of his race, had been
worshipping there before us--Mr. Stiggers, of the Alta. His photograph
lay there, the countenance subdued by accustomed wine, and reposing upon
it appeared that same old smile of serene and ineffable imbecility which
has so endeared it to all whose happiness it has been to look upon
it. That apparition filled us with forebodings. They proved to be well
founded. A sad Chinaman--the sanctified bar-keeper of the temple--threw
open the cabinet with a sigh, exposed the array of empty decanters,
sighed again, murmured "Bymbye, Stiggins been here," and burst into
tears. No one with any feeling would have tortured the poor pagan for
further explanations when manifestly none were needed, and we turned
away in silence, and dropped a sympathetic tear in a fragrant rat-pie
which had just been brought in to be set before the great god Josh. The
temple is thoroughly fitted up now, and is resplendent with tinsel and
all descriptions of finery. The house and its embellishments cost about
eighty thousand dollars. About the 5th of September it will be thrown
open for public inspection, and will be well worth visiting. There is
a band of tapestry extending around a council-room in the second story,
which is beautifully embroidered in a variety of intricate designs
wrought in bird's feathers, and gold and silver thread and silk fibres
of all colors. It cost a hundred and fifty dollars a yard, and was made
by hand. The temple was dedicated last Friday night, and since then
priests and musicians have kept up the ceremonies with noisy and
unflagging zeal. The priests march backward and forward, reciting
prayers or something in a droning, sing-song way, varied by discordant
screeches somewhat like the cawing of crows, and they kneel down, and
get up and spin around, and march again, and still the infernal racket
of gongs, drums and fiddles, goes on with its hideous accompaniment, and
still the spectator grows more and more smothered and dizzy in the close
atmosphere of punk-smoke and opium-fumes. On a divan in one hall, two
priests, clad in royal robes of figured blue silk, and crimson skull
caps, lay smoking opium, and had kept it up until they looked as drunk
and spongy as the photograph of the mild and beneficent Stiggers. One of
them was a high aristocrat and a distinguished man among the Chinamen,
being no less a personage than the chief priest of the temple,
and "Sing-Song" or President of the great Ning-Yong Company. His
finger-nails are actually longer than the fingers they adorn, and one
of them is twisted in spirals like a cork screw. There was one room half
full of priests, all fine, dignified, intelligent looking men like Ah
Wae, and all dressed in long blue silk robes, and blue and red topped
skull caps, with broad brims turned up all round like wash-basins. The
new temple is ablaze with gilded ornamentation, and those who are
fond of that sort of thing would do well to stand ready to accept the
forthcoming public invitation.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 23,1864


We have before us a letter from an intelligent correspondent, dated
"Sarrozay, (San Jose?) Last Sunday;" we had previously ordered this
correspondent to drop us a line, in case anything unusual should happen
in San Jose during the period of his sojourn there. Now that we have got
his chatty letter, however, we prefer, for reasons of our own, to make
extracts from it, instead of publishing it in full. Considering the
expense we were at in sending a special correspondent so far, we are
sorry to be obliged to entertain such a preference. The very first
paragraph in this blurred and scrawling letter pictured our friend's
condition, and filled us with humiliation. It was abhorrent to us
to think that we, who had so well earned and so proudly borne the
appellation of "M. T., The Moral Phenomenon," should live to have such a
letter addressed to us. It begins thus:

"Mr. Mark Twain--Sir: Sarrozay's beauriful place. Flowers--or maybe it's
me--smells delishs--like sp-sp-sp(ic! )irits turpentine. Hiccups again.
Don' mind them had 'em three days."

As we remarked before, it is very humiliating. So is the next paragraph:

"Full of newsper men--reporters. One from Alta, one from Flag, one from
Bulletin, two from MORRING CALL, one from Sacramento Union, one from
Carson Independent. And all drunk--all drunk but me. By Georshe! I'm

The next paragraph is still worse:

"Been out to Leland of the Occidental, and Livingston in the Warrum
Springs, and Steve, with four buggies and a horse, which is a sp
splennid place splennid place."

Here follow compliments to Nolan, Conductor of the morning train, for
his kindness in allowing the writer to ride on the engine, where he
could have "room to enjoy himself strong, you know," and to the Engineer
for his generosity in stopping at nearly every station to give people a
"chance to come on board, you understand." Then his wandering thoughts
turn again affectionately to "Sarrozay" and its wonders:

"Sarrozay's lovely place. Shade trees all down both sides street, and in
the middle and elsewhere, and gardens--second street back of Connental
Hotel. With a new church in a tall scaffolding--I watched her an hour,
but can't understand it. I don' see how they got her in--I don' see how
they goin' to get her out. Corralled for good, praps. Hic! Them hiccups
again. Comes from s-sociating with drunken beasts."

Our special next indulges in some maudlin felicity over the prospect of
riding back to the city in the night on the back of the fire-breathing
locomotive, and this suggests to his mind a song which he remembers to
have heard somewhere. That is all he remembers about it, though, for
the finer details of its language appear to have caved into a sort of
general chaos among his recollections. The bawr stood on the burring
dock, Whence all but him had f-flowed--f-floored--f-fled--

The f-flumes that lit the rattle's back

Sh-shone round him o'er the shed--

"I dono what's the marrer withat song. It don't appear to have any sense
in it, somehow--but she used to be abou the fines' f-fusion--"

Soothing slumber overtook the worn and weary pilgrim at this point,
doubtless, and the world may never know what beautiful thought it met
upon the threshold and drove back within the portals of his brain, to
perish in forgetfulness. After this effort, we trust the public will
bear with us if we allow our special correspondent to rest from his
exhausting labors for a season--a long season--say a year or two.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 23, 1864


Business is progressing in lively style at the Monitor Yard. Some two
hundred and seventy-five hands, including about fifty boys, swarm in and
about the progressing hull, and all appear to work with a will, under
the keen superintending eye of Mr. Ryan and his able assistants. On
Saturday evening, after the men had struck work, they were invited to
assist at a grand flag-raising. A tall tapering pole was planted, amid
general enthusiasm, and a splendid American ensign hoisted to the truck
with cheers to its constellated glories and toasts for its ultimate
triumph. Mr. J. W. Willard, the gentleman who attends to the
contribution-box placed at the entrance gate, for aid to the Sanitary
Commission Fund, informs us that visitors contribute their two bits with
cheerfulness; in many instances coin of larger denomination are dropped,
and change refused to be taken. On Sunday, a general visiting time,
the amount contributed was two hundred and seventy-three dollars; and
yesterday the box received from fifty to sixty dollars. The "Monitor
Box" promises a good source.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 24, 1864


All that Mr. Stiggers, of the Alta, has to say about his monstrous
conduct in the Ning-Yong Temple, day before yesterday, in drinking up
all the liquors in the establishment, and breaking the heart of the
wretched Chinaman in whose charge they were placed--a crushing
exposure of which we conceived it our duty to publish yesterday--is the
following: "We found a general festival, a sort of Celestial free and
easy, going on, on arrival, and were waited on in the most polite manner
by Ah Wee, who, although a young man, is thoroughly well educated, very
intelligent, and speaks English quite fluently. With him we took a glass
of wine and a cigar before the high altar, and with a general shaking
hands all around, our part of the ceremonies was concluded." That is
the coolest piece of effrontery we have met with in many a day. He
"concluded his part of the ceremonies by taking a glass of wine and a
cigar." We should think a man who had acted as Mr. Stiggers did upon
that occasion, would feel like keeping perfectly quiet about it. Such
flippant gayety of language ill becomes him, under the circumstances.
We are prepared, now, to look upon the most flagrant departures from
propriety, on the part of that misguided young creature, without
astonishment. We would not even be surprised if his unnatural instincts
were to prompt him to come back at us this morning, and attempt to
exonerate himself, in his feeble way, from the damning charge we have
fastened upon him of gobbling up all the sacred whiskey belonging to
those poor uneducated Chinamen, and otherwise strewing his path
with destruction and devastation, and leaving nothing but tears and
lamentation, and starvation and misery, behind him. We should not even
be surprised if he were to say hard things about us, and expect people
to believe them. He may possibly tremble and be silent, but it would not
be like him, if he did.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 24, 1864


A gloom pervaded the Police Court, as the sable visages of Mary
Wilkinson and Maria Brooks, with their cloud of witnesses, entered
within its consecrated walls, each to prosecute and defend respectively
in counter charges of assault and battery. The cases were consolidated,
and crimination and recrimination ruled the hour. Mary said she was a
meek-hearted Christian, who loved her enemies, including Maria, and had
prayed for her on the very morning of the day when the latter threw a
pail of water and a rock against her. Maria said she didn't throw; that
she wasn't a Christian herself, and that Mary had the very devil in
her. The case would always have remained in doubt, but Mrs. Hammond
overshadowed the Court, and flashed defiance at counsel, from her eyes,
while indignation and eloquence burst from her heaving bosom, like the
long pent up fires of a volcano, whenever any one presumed to intimate
that her statement might be improved in point of credibility, by a
slight explanation. Even the gravity of the Court was somewhat disturbed
when three hundred weight of black majesty, hauteur, and conscious
virtue, rolled on to the witness stand, like the fore quarter of a
sunburnt whale, a living embodiment of Desdemona, Othello, Jupiter,
Josh, and Jewhilikens. She appeared as counsel for Maria Brooks, and
scornfully repudiated the relationship, when citizen Sam Platt, Esq.
prefaced his interrogation with the endearing, "Aunty." "I'm not your
Aunty," she roared. "I'm Mrs. Hammond," upon which the citizen S. P.,
Esq., repeated his assurances of distinguished regard, and caved a
little. Mrs. Hammond rolled off the stand, and out of the Court room,
like the fragment of a thunder cloud, leaving the "congregation," as
she called it, in convulsions. Mary Brooks and Maria Wilkinson were both
convicted of assault and battery, and ordered to appear for sentence.

The San Francisco Daily Morning Call, August 24, 1864


George Johnson yesterday had his room-mate, M. Fink, arrested for
stealing one hundred and fourteen dollars from him. Johnson says Fink is
an old friend of his, and came to him three months ago and said he had
no money, could get no work to do, and had no place to sleep; he had
previously been tending bar at the Mazurka Saloon. Johnson has shared
his bed with him, and paid his washing and board bills from that time
until a few weeks ago, when the fellow got a situation of some kind on
one of the steamers. He still continued to share Johnson's room, in the
Wells Building, corner of Clay and Montgomery streets, however, when
in port. Johnson left him in bed yesterday morning, early, and when he
returned, he missed his money and his friend--the former from the bureau
drawer and the latter from the bed. We consider that this only confirms
what we have always said--namely, that the heart of man is desperately