Jump to Content

Collection Guide
Collection Title:
Collection Number:
Get Items:
Finding Aid of the Willard Brigham Farwell Papers C057928
C057928  
View entire collection guide What's This?
PDF (54.73 Kb) HTML
Search this collection
Collection Overview
 
Table of contents What's This?
Description
These papers are Pioneer recollections of early gold digging and mining all throughout California, as related in the article Farwell wrote for an issue of The Pioneer from January 1898. There is also a handwritten account tracing the author's life from the time he left Boston in 1848, through his various careers and offices held in California. He was a member of The Society of California Pioneers, and active as an officer of that organization.
Background
Willard Brigham Farwell, born in Marlboro, Massachusetts January 26, 1829, left his job in Boston (jan. 12, 1849) for California, organizing 150 men (Boston and California Joint Stock Mining and Trading Company) on the "Edward Everett". Stopping in Valparaiso, arriving in Benicia July 12, 1849, Farwell left on the first steamboat to navigate the Sacramento Rive (Aug.17, 1849). He went to Bidwell's Bar but failed at mining. Returning to Sacramento, then to S.F. with his brother and a shipmate, they left for the southern mines (1850). Having no luck in Wood's Creek, nor Angel's Camp, they returned to S.F., and bought land (Mission Lands) in San Jose. In 1852 Farwell helped found the S. F. newspaper "The Daily Whig". In 1854-55, he served in the State Legislature, and was nominated for State Senate (Whig) in the fall of 1855, but was defeated. Farwell was Editor-in-Chief of the "Alta California" in 1860 and moved to Washington D.C. to work for U.S. Senator E.D. Baker (Oregon). Appointed Naval Officer in the Customs House of S.F. (1861-65), he also was elected President of The Society of California Pioneers (1863). Appointed "Resident Agent - Abroad" of the U.S. Treasury Dept., he traveled in Europe, but resigned in 1870 to begin the "The North Atlantic Express Company" as Gen. Supt. for 3 years. In 1884, Mr. Farwell was elected Sup. of the Calif. State Central Committee. The account in this manuscript notes Farwell as being born and raised in the East, leaving home as a young adult and sailing from Boston around the Horn arriving in Bodega Head July 6, 1849, and anchoring in San Francisco that evening. It continues with a history of his personal and professional life and his extensive world-wide travels. He was elected to the state assembly in 1854 for one year and in 1861 was appointed as a Naval officer at the Customs House. He was nominated for other offices - public and private - and was also active in building in San Francisco. He apparently travelled and lived abroad for a period of years related to his term as a Naval officer. Farwell died in 1903.
Extent
1.0 folder 3 items (2 typescripts, 1 handwritten)
Restrictions
There are no restrictions on access.
Availability
Collection open for research.