MEYER, Carl [of Basel]. Nach dem Sacramento. Reisebilder eines Heimgekehrten von Carl Meyer. Aarau [Switzerland]: Druck u Verlag von U. R. Sauerlander, 1855 [but date on front wrapper is 1856].

$ 560.00

8vo., (7 ¾ x 5 inches). Unopened (a bit of faint spotting). Original pictorial gray paper wrappers lithographed by G. Wolf (fragile, a little frayed at the edges).

First edition. An account of a visit to the Californian goldfields. Meyer tells, among other tales, how in 1853 there was an inn at San Francisco which had the notice “Here you may get drunk for a dollar, dead drunk for two dollars, and get straw for nothing.” “Born in Germany, Meyer left for New Orleans in February 1849 bound for the Isthmus of Panama. On the Pacific side, he boarded the three-masted ship, ‘Sarah Elisha,’ and after a difficult voyage, arrived in Monterey in the spring. Henry Wagner speculates that some inconsistencies and errors indicate that Meyer wrote this book based on his memory rather than a journal. Nonetheless, Meyer must be credited with providing some of the strongest word pictures of the Gold Rush. His summaries of the last vestiges of Mexican California are all choice. His descriptions encompass a Mexican caravan on its way to the Mariposa diggings, geology of the region, gold mining camps, San Francisco, Indians (the Allequas tribe in particular), river steamers, and bull and bear fights in Sacramento. Having witnessed the birth and social forming of the gold country, Meyer left for home via Nicaragua in 1852” (Kurutz, “The California Gold Rush” 439a. Cowan I, p. 154; Cowan II, p. 428; Howes M572; Wheat, “Books of the California Gold Rush” 140).