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THIE VORK PUBLIC LIBRARY

ASTOR, LENOX
TILDEN FOUNDATIONS

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their instruments preparatory to their evening concert. I was disposed to fall in with this suggestion, from the fact, that that was the only night during my stay in the country, that I did not listen to their music. If they took the trouble to stick up a notice of postponement, it read, undoubtedly, as follows: "Postponed indefinitely on account of a fright in the family.”

We resumed our journey and at 10 P.M., arrived at the bend. After watering our horses we secured the ends of their lassos, and taking our supper, we rolled ourselves in our blankets. In the morning we directed our course towards Beal's Bar, a higher point on the river. As we were galloping along (California horses cannot trot) we met a gentleman whom I recog. nized as a New York acquaintance. He was a New York merchant, and when at home, somewhat noted for his dashing appearance. His appearance on this occasion was so extremely ludicrous, I could not withstand the temptation of taking a sketch. (See Plate.) He was returning from the mines, and at the time we came upon him, a coyota was casting inquisitive glances in that direction, as if in doubt whether it was really a man, or a fellow-member of the California Har. monic Society. He had on a slouched hat, which, together with his whiskers and moustache, almost hid his face; a mariner's shirt, and a pair of drawers, which were, on this occasion, serving in the place of pantaloons, being suspended by two strips of a woolen blanket, crossed in front. A rifle on his shoulder, a , pipe in his mouth, and blankets in hand, he looked the very personation of a corn-field effigy.

After a short detention we moved on, arriving at the Bar at 12 m. After dinner we went down to the scene of operations, my friend wishing to purchase an interest. The bar was divided into thirty shares, owned by as many individuals. They worked as a company and divided the proceeds at night. Shares were commanding $2,800 each. Beal's Bar was at this time paying about $20 per day to a man. They had, however, expended a large amount of money in turning the water from the channel. After remaining two hours, we started in the direction of the Mormon Bar, where we arrived at 9 P.M. Tracy was in an ecstasy. He provided supper with great alacrity, and even let my friend occupy half his bed.

I had resolved to engage in the mercantile business at this point, and having heard the present store was for sale, I called on the proprietor for his terms. They did not appear favorable, and I started the next morning for Sacramento, accompanied by my friend. We arrived that evening, and the next morning I commenced buying a stock. I was soon on my return. We were three days in reaching our destination, and such a time! We had a span of mules and a span of horses before the wagon, and a nice matched span of drivers. I paid $20 for an extra team on the route, and finally reached our destination. I de

I . posited my goods under a tree, having canvas with which I designed to erect a store. The next morning I succeeded in buying out the other store, and before night had possession. I now felt that I had the helm of a craft I knew how to manage, and was fairly at sea. I immediately hired a Frenchman as cook at $50 per week, and Tracy became a guest. I was now pleasantly situated, with every prospect of success. I soon purchased a share in the bar-paid $1,100. At this time it was yielding abund. antly, and I had every assurance of an ample remuneration. Throughout the country there is a strong propensity for gambling. People appear to engage in it for want of other amuseThe store I had purchased had been used for the

purpose every night since its construction, but it became so great a nuisance, I was obliged to prohibit it excepting on particular occasions.

I here had an opportunity of seeing many of those strange adventurers who are met with only on the extreme frontiers, and who have as great an aversion to law and civilization as they have to the manacles of a prison. I had had the store but a few days, when one of these strange beings crossed my path. I must confess there was nothing, at first sight, to attract my admiration. About nine in the morning I saw, approaching the store, a strange looking being, mounted on a gray horse, a poncho thrown over his shoulder, over which was slung a huge rifle, skins wrapped around his legs, a pair of Mexican spurs on, and a slouched hat which partially obscured his copper complexion. As he rode up, Tracy recognized him as an old mountaineer, whom he had seen in Santa Fé. After the recog. nition, Tracy says “Jim! whose horse is that?" Jim—"how

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