San Mateo County History
San Mateo County Gazette News
December 1860
(Transcribed by Chris Havnar)

San Mateo County Gazette
Redwood City, San Mateo County, California
Saturday Morning, December 1, 1860, Vol. 2 No. 35

New Advertisements

Dr. Vailes,
Physician, Surgeon and Accoucheur
Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons,
And licentiate of Apothecary’s Hall, London, England, and late Surgeon in the British and American armies; tenders his services to the citizens of Redwood City and the surrounding country.  Office at the residency of Mr. Thomas Woodhead.

U.S. Marshal’s Notice
United State of American
Northern District of California

Whereas, Objection has been made to the official survey and location of the land finally confirmed in case No. 82, to FRANCISCO SANCHEZ, known as “San Pedro” and situated in the County of San Mateo in said District.
 Now, Therefore, in pursuance of the monition of the District Court of the United States for said District to the directed and delivered, I do hereby give public notice to all parties having, or claiming to have, an interest in such survey and location, to be and appear before the said Court, sitting in Land Cases, on or before Wednesday, the 19th day of December, A.D., 1860, at 11 o’clock, A.M. (if that day shall be a day or jurisdiction and if not, on or before the next Wednesday thereafter.) and then and there to intervene for the protection of such interest, or their defaults will be taken.
Dated at San Francisco, in the District aforesaid, November 28, 1860.
U.S. Marshal

On Bridge street, near the corner of Main st.,
Steinheiser & Weinschenk,
Having leased the new building lately erected on Bridge street, give notice to the citizens of Redwood City and San Mateo county, that they now offer for sale an excellent stock of
Which they will sell at greatly reduced prices.  Their facilities for purchasing the best quality of goods in San Francisco at low prices are unsurpassed by any store in this county, which will enable them to afford the best bargains to purchasers.
Please call and examine our fine stock of good before purchasing elsewhere.
Redwood City, Nov. 24, 1860

San Mateo County Gazette
Redwood City, San Mateo County, California
Saturday Morning, December 8, 1860, Vol. 2 No. 36

THE NEW COUNTY OFFICERS. – The new county officers, with the exception of the County Judge, received certificates and took their seats on Monday last, 3d instant.  Three of the five Justices, Messrs. J.W. Turner, S. Tilton and John Johnson, convened as required by law, for the election of Associate Justices of the Court of Sessions, and J.W. Turner and S. Tilton were chosen.  The County Judge does not take his seat until May next.

TWELFTH DISTRICT COURT – This Court, for the County of San Mateo, will commence the December term on Monday, 17th inst.  The following is a list of the trial jurors drawn:
John Vanderoef
J.P. Ross
J.S. Colegrove
B.F. Fox, Jr.
W.C.R. Smith
J.Q.A. Tilton
R.S. Eaton
J.W. Kisling
R.W. Tallant
Andrew Teague
Albert Dexter
H.W. Kerrison
A. Woodham
Wm. Raynor
W.P. Morrison
David Jenkins
T.G. Phelps
Moses Davis
Theodore Finger
B.A. Rankin
S.H. Bowman
Patrick Casey
Burns John
A. Willard
Phillip Trainor
H.L. White
J.P. Edinger
Charles Lux
Curtis Baird
G.F. Maynard

FIREMEN’S ELECTION. – The triennial election for Chief Engineer of the San Francisco Fire Department took place Monday last, and resulted in the choice of David Scannell, Foreman of Broderick Engine Company No. 1.

COUNTY COURT – This Court meets on Monday next, 10th, to try the contested election case – Bowman vs. Ames.

U.S. Land Surveys
U.S. Surveyor General’s Office
San Francisco, Nov. 20, 1860
In compliance with the First Section of an Act of Congress, approved June 14th, 1860, regulating Surveys of private Land Claims, notice is hereby given that the plats of the following private land claims, surveyed in pursuance of the 13th Section of an Act entitled “An Act to ascertain and settle Private Land Claims in the State of California,” approved March 3d, 1851, have been examined and approved by me:
Name of Rancho:  Rincon de San Francisquito
Confirmer:  Teodoro and Secundino Robles
The plats will be retained in this office, subject to inspection, for four weeks from the date of this publication.
U.S. Surveyor General

The first house was built in Redwood City in 1851, by Capt. A. Smith, upon the south side of Bridge street, near the creek.  In ’52  the first vessel, the schooner “redwood,” was built by G.M. Burnham.  The first store was established in September, ’52, by Wm. Shaw, in the building now occupied as a residence by C. Livingston.  The hotel now known as the “American,” was established in 1853, by Harris, in true early California style.  It then consisted of but a small part portion of the present edifice, and possessed a single lodging room, with the well remembered ranges of “bunks” along its sides.  This was the year of “incidents” in the neighborhood.

In the summer of the year the opinion prevailed that the grant to the Pulgas rancho would not be confirmed by the U.S. Land Commissioners, and in consequence numbers of squatters made their appearance from the surrounding country and from San Francisco to take possession of the supposed public land.  There were in all about three hundred of the settlers, most of whom came fully armed, and proceeded to build shanties, measure off one hundred and sixty acres each, and take formal possession of the newly acquired property.  The land most coveted was that lying between Redwood City and the San Francisquito creek, which from its being beautifully wooded, seemed peculiarly desirable.  Many ludicrous occurrences took place in the neighborhood during this squatter excitement.  The favorite time for operations was during the night, and magic itself could not excel the changes wrought by means of tents, shingle houses, splinter fences, etc., during the hours of darkness, and often conducted so silently that no one knew of the changes till daylight developed them.  It not unfrequently happened that several parties were attracted by a choice piece of ground and having commenced fencing during the night, would discover the error only when the next morning showed the similarity of intent in their labors.  Of course in such a case a fight ensued, when the strongest party took the property.  On one occasion a party commenced work fencing a piece of land during the night, and on completing their labors next morning discovered in the centre of their enclosure an occupied dwelling built several days before, but which in their eagerness, they had not observed.  Fence-rails were at this time twenty-five cents each, sixteen to twenty of which would be an ordinary armful, the venders of this apparently valuable article grumbling at the exceedingly low prices.  Lumber commanded the enormous price of fifty dollars per thousand feet, for common boards, at the mills, only four miles distant.  This year the large gang-mill, with twenty six saws, was built by Dennis Martin, at a cost of upwards of $30,000.  This mill was burnt down last year.  Shingles sold readily at upwards of ten dollars per thousand.

The little deserted cabin ten by fifteen feet in dimensions, near the county road, opposite town, and upon Hon. Horace Hawes’ farm, was at this time in full operation as the “Pulgas Ranch House,” where the traveling community were furnished with “accommodations for man and beast” – which consisted of a soft spot under a tree and a roll up in his own blankets, if he had any, for the man, while the beast was turned out on the plain.  At this time a very singular means for crossing the creek was in use, the present bridge not being in existence.  This ferrying was done by foot-passengers, with the assistance of a huge pair of boots, rivaling in size the famous seven-leagurers of the giant of the nursery tale.  In these enormous boots the passenger encases his extremities and waded through the mire and water safely to the desired shore.  Tradition of the time tells of a diminutive individual who essayed the passage, but lost his balance when midway, and was nearly drowned, but was drawn out, half dead, by the humane inhabitants who came to his rescue.  Near by, in rear of the Engert tract, about this period, the great Col. Harazthy, of mint chimney notoriety, possessed a camp, and was engaged in herding cattle.

Upon confirmation of the Pulgas rancho to the claimants and present possessors, much difficulty was experienced in ousting the squatters, and for many months affairs in the neighborhood were in a sad condition, many of the “settler,” as they termed themselves, threatening death to the confirmees of the grant and any others who dated molest them.  Many riots were the consequence, but no blood was shed, though why it was not, under the circumstances, and considering the desperate character of many of the contestants, is very remarkable.  Gradually, however, they were one by one reconciled, and left, or purchased from the grantees.

But little change or progress was perceptible in the shape of improvements, etc., in Redwood City from the time of the above events until 1856, in which year the Consolidation Act, forming a single Government for the City and County of San Francisco, and circumscribing the latter within its present limits, went into operation.  The organic act of our county provided for an election in May 1856, at which the usual county officials were to be chosen and a county seat selected.  As thought the new county of San Mateo had become their legitimate prey, a crowd of the colleagues of Billy Mulligan, Chris Lilly, and John McDougal, immediately pounced down from San Francisco to take possession.   The election took place on the day appointed, but such an election was never seen before that time, and never will be again.  At the “Grange,” Lilly’s head-quarters, five hundred voters appeared upon the returns, when there were really not more than fifty adult male residents in the precinct; two hundred and ninety-seven names were upon the list from the Crystal Spring precinct, to represent less than twenty-five voters.  So it was in every precinct where the operation of these men were carried on.  Several days after the election, the returns were presented to the Commissioners appointed, two of whom proceeded to canvas them in the parlor of the American Hotel, in Redwood City.  While they were thus engaged, the door was broken open, and Billy Mulligan, accompanied, as an eye-witness informs us, by about twelve to fifteen of as villainous a crew, in appearance, as ever graced the State’s prison, rushed in and proceeded to destroy whatever papers they could lay their hands on.  The most important documents, however, were preserved by the forethought of the clerk.  Being told that the candidate for sheriff was elected, whose supposed defeat was the ground of the assault, they desisted, but in the meantime Lilly, with a similar gang had made his appearance.  The parties were all armed, the cocking of pistols and other hostile demonstrations were made, but after much tumult they all retired, leaving the Commissioners to complete their duties, which resulted in furnishing with certificates of election the following persons:
 Benj. F. Fox, County Judge; W.T. Gough, District Attorney; B. Mulligan, Sheriff; Robert Gray (Lilly’s barkeeper,) County Clerk; Wm. Rogers, Treasurer; John Johnson, Chas. Clark, and Benj. Fenwick, (John McDougal’s barkeeper,) Supervisors; C. Fair, Assessor; A.T. McClure, Coroner.

The minor county offices appeared to attract no attention, perhaps for the reason that they promised no revenue of consequence to the incumbent.  It must be said, here, that but few of the persons above named were actively or directly supported by the ballot-box stuffers.  They aimed only at the lucrative offices for their colleagues.  At the first session of the County Court, held at Belmont, the election was contested.  The proceedings had in the case, which develops the richest state of things ever know at an election, will be found in full in our issued of the 22d instant – next Saturday week.

The decision of the Court located the county seat at Redwood City, and the warehouse of J.V. Diller, Esq., was used as a courthouse until the winter of 1858, when the new brick edifice for that purpose was completed – cost, $10,000.

The town has improved more rapidly since the winter of 1858, than during the whole previous time.  New buildings are making their appearance in all directions, and, taken altogether, Redwood City is improving more rapidly, and with a greater appearance of permanence, than nine-tenths of the agricultural towns of California.

New Advertisements.
WELLS & CO., Wholesale and Retail Dealers in
Provisions and Ship Stores
No. 11 Clay Street, Wharf
Near East St., San Francisco

San Mateo County Gazette
Redwood City, San Mateo County, California
Saturday Morning, December 15, 1860, Vol. 2 No. 37

At Woodside, San Mateo County, Saturday, Dec. 8, J.D. ROSE of consumption.

DEATH OF J.D. ROSE. – J.D. Rose, Esq., Assessor for this county, died at Woodside on Saturday last, of consumption.  He was a young man, and was much respected by all who knew him.  His popularity in the county was evidenced by the fact that at the time of his election, in September 1859, he received the highest number of votes cast for any person then a candidate for office in this county.   A few years since he sustained an injury in the left lung, which was the cause of the disease of which he died.  He was buried on Sunday last.

WRITING SCHOOL – Mr.T.J. Phillips, late a school-teacher at Halfmoon Bay, proposes to teach writing in this place.  His terms are liberal, and those who desire lessons in the accomplishments should become his scholars, as his proposition affords them opportunities that do not frequently offer.

BIDWELL’s STORE. – Our friend H.C. Bidwell, of Spanishtown, has enlarged his store, and added a large quantity of new and excellent goods to the extensive supply previously on hand.  He knows how to keep a store and how to stock it.  The accommodation afforded by his establishment to the people of Spanishtown is appreciated, and we are glad to see it.

NEW TEMPERANCE DIVISION – A Division of Sons of Temperance was organized at Spanishtown, Nov. 17th, under the name of Pilarcitos Division, No. 87.  It is composed at present of members.  The officers were installed by H.S. Loveland, D.G.W.P.

CRYSTAL SPRINGS HOTEL – The card of L. Whittingham, Esq., present proprietor of this excellent hotel, will be found in to-day’s paper.  Repairs and improvements are being made in every department of the establishment, which, with the careful attention of the proprietor to his guests, and his widely known capacity as host will make the Spring the resort of all who seek pleasure and good entertainment.  The visitors at this place will find a very marked change in its conduct compared to what it has been heretofore.

SEWING MACHINE – Attention is particularly called to the advertisement of Wilcox & Gibbs, in another column.  Their machines will compare favorably with any in the State.  A.A. Brown, Agent, Montgomery street, near Pine, San Francisco.

FATAL ACCIDENT. – The Sierra Democrat says that a man named Turner, while working in an incline tunnel at Queen City, near Port Wine, was almost instantly killed on the morning of Nov. 30th.  The workmen had that morning attached a new rope to the car, the wind of which it is supposed twisted the hook until it broke, allowing the car to descend with great rapidity, running over the unfortunate man, and the lamentable result above chronicled was the consequence.

TO BE HANGED. – Ramon Romero was tried last week before the District Court, at San Leandro, and found guilty of murder in the first degree.  He was sentenced to be hanged there on the 11th  of January next.  Ah Poth, a Chinaman, convicted of murder in the same county, was also sentenced to be hanged, at San Leandro, on the same day.

SUICIDE AT SACRAMENTO. – Joseph H. Virgo committed suicide on the night of the 6th Dec., in Sacramento, by cutting his throat with a penknife.

The Canada de Raimundo, (as ordinarily written, but which we think should be Remundo, as it was intended, no doubt, in the exaggerated style of the native Californians, to mean “world’s king,”) signifying when rendered into English the glen or valley of the king of the world, is a portion of this county whose importance as a farming and stock locality, as well as its peculiar beauty, demands a notice in connection with the more favored precincts.  It is embraced within the boundaries of a grant made by the Mexican Government, before American acquisition, to Juan Coppinger.  The valley commences, properly at the north end, where a line would strike drawn from Condon’s to the Harrington farm house, or thereabouts, the foot hills skirting it on the east, the Alembique creek on the south and the Sierra Morena, or Santa Cruz mountains, as they are sometimes called, on the west.  Looking southward down the valley, from hight sufficient to embrace in a single view as far as the sills midway of it which obstruct a further view, the spectator is forced to admit that but few lovelier minor landscapes ever met his eye.  The dense woods, formed of the invariable and abundant live oaks, madrones, firs, and the young redwood, present on all sides the refreshing and verdant appearance so necessary to beautiful scenery.  Upon the smaller dales which alternate with the wood lands throughout the extent of the Canada, the sturdy farmer’s thrift is seen in the well cultivated fields of grain and meadow land, the farm enclosures here and there forming a charming relief to the landscape, while the farm buildings of all kinds lend the picture additional ornament.  Shining with the sun’s reflection, we catch, through the foliage of the trees and shrubs, an occasional glimpse of Lake Reymundo, which also, here and there where the more open county permits it, presents itself in a broader sheet of water, where, during the present season, ducks, geese, and other water-fowl congregate in numbers.  Here also are found immense flocks of beautiful quail, among which the sportsmen are now making havoc.  Occasionally, the deer from the mountains to the westward pay the valley a visit, and but a short time since, and perhaps not unfrequently at present, the fierce grizzly and California lion prowl through the dense groves in search of prey.  The Canada is about two miles in average width, and about six miles in length.

Passing down the valley along the base of the Sierra Morena, the scenery becomes even more beautiful on a nearer view.  The road winds among fragrant laurel and bay trees.  On all sides also, in the wooded portions, are seen the peculiar madronas, their red trunks and beautiful foliage diversifying the prospect.  Upon this western side of the valley meanders the main branch of the Rodondo creek, passing through deep and romantic canyons, the road winding along its steep banks, upon the right the towering Sierra, on the left high spurs of the same, all densely wooded, forming a luxuriant shade upon the entire road, until it debouches upon Woodside.  Upon the stream just named, are the remains of several stream and water mills, nearly all now useless, giving evidence of having once been scenes of busy life while the great redwood trees were in existence, but are now in ruins, a fit remembrancer of the demolition of the beautiful groves, of which they were the means.

The “Canada” is being fast settled up.  New houses are seen here and there throughout its extent, put up by families newly arrived, and clearings, where needed, are also being made, the open or less wooded lands being mostly occupied, having been the first to be taken up.  Some of the more opulent of the citizens have selected the most picturesque locations, and have erected fine cottage residences.  The grounds of these are being beautifully ornamented.  In time, not long hence, either, the valley will be populous, and those who have appreciation of the beautifies of nature, and the advantages of soil and climate, cannot fine a locality more desirable.

  ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
New Advertisements
Crystal Springs Hotel
The Undersigned Has Leased The Above House and Farm
For five years and will spare no endeavors to make it one of the most attractive places out of San Francisco.  His friends and the public can rest assured he will leave nothing undon to make it worthy of their patronage.

San Mateo County Gazette
Redwood City, San Mateo County, California
Saturday Morning, December 22, 1860, Vol. 2 No. 38

DISTRICT COURT – This court, Judge Norton presiding, commenced the December term for San Mateo County on Monday last.  The following cases were disposed of:
Maria Luisa Greer vs. J.A. Yoell and J. Hovious – Injunction made perpetual judgment for Plaintiff;
A.T. Castor vs. Fonda and Gray – Injunction made perpetual judgment for plaintiff;
D.O. Mills vs J. Protter – Injunction made perpetual judgment for Plaintiff;
Richard Collins vs. John Langan et al – dismiss;
Basil Clark vs Jas. Mee – dismissed;
C. Prior vs. J. Corrigan et al. – Tried by a Jury, judgment in favor of Corrigan and for plaintiff against the other Defendants;
J. Bernal vs Hovious et al. – Tried by a Jury, verdict for Plaintiff for recovery of property on its value $737.50;H. Hawes vs. S. Hovious – Judgment for $365.17

Hon. Benj. F. Fox, County Judge
The following contested elections, on the ground of fraud, were tried this day:
1st Case – J.W. Ackerson vs. Bernard Mulligan, Sheriff
2nd Case – B.G. Lathrop vs. Robert Gray, County Clerk
3rd Case – Curtis Baird vs. Wm. Rodgers, County Treasurer.
4th Case – James Berry vs. Benjamin Fenwick, Supervisor
5th Case – S.B. Gordon vs. Charles Fair, Assessor
Mr. Duer and Judge Lake appeared for the complainants, and Mr. Richards for the defendants, Rogers and Mulligan.

Accident – Capt. John Ponte, of the schooner Viahiah, met with a serious accident Monday last by a fall while loading his vessel at this place.  His foot slipped when in the act of stepping upon a wet board, and he fell, throwing our of place the right ankle joint, and fracturing one of the bones between the ankle and knee.  Dr. A.T. McClure was called upon and rendered such assistance as the case required.

MEETING OF THE BOARD OF SUPERVISORS. – Messrs. R.S. Thornton, J.P. Ames, and J.V. Diller, composing the new Board of Supervisors of San Mateo county, convened Tuesday evening last, 18th, and organized temporarily by electing R.S. Thornton, Esq., Supervisor from First Township, Chairman.

RETIREMENT OF JUDGE NORTON – The present term of our District Court closes the official term of Hon. Edward Norton, its presiding Judge. The lawyers and officers of court here and in San Francisco, are taking occasion at this time to express in an appropriate manner their high appreciation of the man and the officer.
 For more than six years he has been constantly engaged in the hearing and determination of cases, as Judge of the Twelfth Judicial District.  His duties have been more laborious than those of any other Judge in the State, the business of his court being much greater than that of any other court.

GENERAL CIPRIANI. – We notice with pleasure the return to our county of our old friend and fellow citizen Gen. Lunetto Cipriani.  The General, as will be remembered, has resided in this county since 1853, near Belmont, where he built his mansion, so well-known to every one.  Called away in May 1859, by the war of Italian independence, he was elected to the highest and most responsible position of the States of Central Italy, as Dictator of the Romagnas, and in this position displayed talents and energy, which, to a very great extent, have been instrumental in consolidating the unity of that noble nationality and secured himself a brilliant page in history.  It is therefore with pride that we claim him as one of our citizens, and welcome his return here.

San Mateo County Gazette
Redwood City, San Mateo County, California
Saturday Morning, December 29, 1860, Vol. 2 No. 39

DISTRICT COURT – The following cases were disposed of Friday and Saturday, last week:
B.G. Lathrop vs. W.C. Crook, et al. – Verdict for Defendant;
Leoindas Haskell vs. Viante Miramontez – Judgment for Plaintiff
Robert Scott vs Robert Patten – Judgment for Plaintiff
Helen E. Harrington vs. Dennis Martin – Judgment for Plaintiff
D.R. Jones vs Wm. Martin – Dismissed
Wm. Martin vs D.R. Jones – Judgement for Plaintiff
Wm. Martin vs. J.V. Diller, et al – Continued

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