Short break

April 12, 2010

Hello all,

I am going to take a short break from posting on this blog and use the time for other writing projects.

I’ll try to post photos & other info periodically and am always available through e-mail (  if someone is seaching for something in particular.



The women left behind

April 6, 2010

I suspected that many women were left behind during the gold rush and I ran across this lithograph that seemed to support my theory.

Abandoned by the adventurer

An expectant father leaves his wife behind (I think that is her father trying to comfort her).

Not even ready for California

April 5, 2010

Ready to go to California?

 The caption at the top says :  “I am sorry I didn’t follow the advice of Grammy to go ’round the Horn.” 


I just finished reading George R. Stewart’s The California Trail, which covers the various routes early emigrants took to reach California and details the various challenges they met along the way.  

The most striking thing about these early adventurers, as the illustration indicates, is that they really weren’t prepared for the journey.  Many didn’t even know how to get to California.   There were no maps, no established roads or even proven trails, and yet 

“…so many of all kinds and classes of People should sell out comfortable homes in Missouri and Elsewhere pack up and start across such an emmence Barren waste to settle in some new place of which they have at most so uncertain information…”

Pretty much just crossing their fingers and heading west.

Very crazy, or very cool, depending on your perspective. 

Potty Book Learnings

April 2, 2010

17th century, German-made stoneware “Bellarmine” jug

In our house we have many of what I call (the kids hate this) “potty books”, those Bathroom Readers you buy at Costco that are full of random facts.

In one of them I learned about Popham, a very early American colony that did not survive.  The artifact above came from that site .