Sunday, May 21, 2023

Left coast, by water and land

TL;DR -- From and to New England, there was regular traffic from the beginning. Land movement started early too with the lure of the west. San Francisco has been related to many posts that we have had, with travelers arriving there by land or by water. We recently looked in detail about the changes after the earth quake of 1906. Too, we have been researching the early periods. This post provides links to further information and to images created over the timeframe. In one case, we find a close New England relative there early (1831), by water. Too, we have more information on involvement with the Gold Rush. 


Technology, especially that related to or supported by computing, allows new ways of looking at things, one of which is an emphasis on numbers as seen in the emphasis on measurement, for one. So, take the cloud (internet), ever notice how every possible metrical view is offered? A new field, called data science, likes to facilitate this approach to viewing the world around oneself.

In our context, probably of all cities in the U.S., San Francisco would show up as having the most hits. We will do a search sometime. But, that "city by the bay" (from a song, know it?) figures for several reasons. Wanderers from the east, including Canada, were out there before New Spain, one might argue. We do not know the real early Europeans on that scene, but they got there two ways. One was by water. The other was by land. Some might have come up from the south which we pay attention to. 

But, our initial take on the matter was those who got to the left coast from New England. At some point, we will collect these names, but here are three: Jedediah Strong Smith (Jul 2018), F.M. Thompson (Jun 2017), and Grizzly Adams (Nov 2020). The month/year is for the post on that subject. F.M.Thompson was first in our studies as he wrote of his travels in The Massachusetts Magazine. Then, we got to Jedediah when we started to look at the vast interior of the country. Finally, the post on Grizzly was of the Covid time which will be an upcoming theme as we approach the U.S. holiday of Memorial Day (29 May 2023). 

We spent more time looking at San Francisco in reference to the Barque (Bostonian) that wrecked off the coast of Oregon, in 1850. There are many stories pending on that theme which we will get to, at some point. In the meantime, let's continue with the best of the west. 

The following links are to material dealing with San Francisco before the Gold Rush. As well, we wanted to find photos from the period before the quake of 1906.

  • San Francisco History - Index - The timeline at this site from the Museum of the City of San Francisco covers it all with five major themes. They start with the Gold Rush. The first category is from then to the Civil War. With respect to the three gents mentioned above, we have three periods: Jedediah was there in the 1820s/30s when it was New Spain territory; F.M. was there for a few months during the early stages of the Civil War; Grizzly showed up after the Civil War.  
    • San Francisco - Before the Gold Rush - This section has lots more information about the early years. It reports that William Heath Davis (WikiTree) visited in 1831 having come by a ship that was from Boston. William, born in Honolulu, was a descendant of Thomas Gardner of Roxbury. William's presence offers a chance to consider comparisons with Jedediah's experience. By water and by land, each has their purpose and perils. Jedediah died in mid-country on his way back to St. Louis. William lived to see the 1900s. 
  • Images - early San Francisco - Below, we show an image from the National Park Service of ships in the marina. Many were abandoned as crews went after their fortune. We will look at some of these tales, including ones known about personally. 
  • Images from - This site offers images from over the years, including early paintings of the area. 
There is not a shortage of photographs to review. However, it was reported that San Francisco had many ships that had been left and were taken apart. That's a story to look at. 

Gold Rush changed San Francisco

In our normal fashion, we will identify links to New England as we expand upon this theme. 

Remarks: Modified: 05/29/2023

05/29/2023 -- Jedediah met his fate along the Cimarron River in KS in the same year (1831) that young William arrived in S.F. from Hawaii.

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