Santa Clara County History

History of Santa Clara County


The Romantic History of the Town of Santa Clara--Home of One of the Early Missions--The Story of the Santa Clara University--The Planting of the Mission Cross.

As far as is known, William Clark was the first American to locate in Santa Clara. He is the man who first reduced the ore from the mines at New Almaden. In 1846 came the Harlands, Van Gordon, Samuel Young, Tabor, Allen, Jones, Dickinson and Bennett. In 1848 there arrived J. Alex. Forbes, Jonathan and Charles Parr, William Booth, Fielding Lard, Riley Montrey, Cobeb Rand, Geo. W. Bellamy, Dr. H. H. Warburton, Mr. Bazard, William McCutchen, William Haun, Washington Moody, John Whisman, William Campbell, Thomas Hudson, James Linns, Austin Angel and others.

There were two stores, one kept by Robert Scott, and one by a Frenchman. The only hotel was the Bellamy house. The first frame building was built as a residence for Father Real, the priest in charge of the Mission, at the southwest corner of Santa Clara and Alviso Streets. The lumber was sawed with a whipsaw by Fielding Lard, in the Palgas redwoods. Immediately afterward buildings were erected by Lard, Scott and Haun. In 1850 a school house building was erected on Liberty Street. It was built by subscription and was long known as the "little brick schoolhouse." It was used as a place of worship by all denominations. In 1853 the first church was built by the Methodists. In the same year a female seminary was erected to the west of Main Street, between Liberty and Lexington. In 1850 Peleg Rush imported twenty-three houses from Boston and set them up in town. The Union Hotel was built in 1850. It was conducted by Appleton & Ainslie. In 1851 the Santa Clara College was established.

In 1850 the town site was surveyed by William Campbell into lots a hundred yards square, and one lot was given to each citizen with the understanding that he was to build a house on it within three months; failing to do so the lot could be taken by another. There was no town government until 1852 when the following officers were chosen trustees: F. Lard, S. S. Johnson, A. D. Hight, F. Cooper, Riley Montrey; clerk, C. W. Adams; assessor, A. Madan; marshal, William Fosgate. In 1862 a regular charter, in accordance with state laws, was obtained and the following were chosen as trustees: J. R. Johnson, A. B. Caldwell, R. K. Ham, J. L. Guernsey, Henry Uhrbroock. The charter was amended in 1866 and again in 1872. The town, as then laid out, was two miles long and a mile and a half wide. Methodism in California was first planted in Santa Clara.

Santa Clara, called by admirers. "the progressive city beautiful," has (1922) a population of 6,300. Its public school system is equal to any in the land. Children enjoy the best possible educational advantages under the best teachers available and are provided with beautiful, spacious and strictly modern buildings and playgrounds. The latest and most approved laboratory equipment and athletic accessories are installed. Sanitary and health conditions are under the careful supervision of a skilled physician. The grammar school course is supplemented by manual training, sewing, cooking and music. The high school prepares students for the Normal schools and universities, and gives, a comprehensive general course.

The Santa Clara Chamber of Commerce is located in the Bank of Italy building and is one of the live progressive institutions of the town. The officers are: Robert A. Fatjo, president; J. J. Jones, L. G. Fatjo, vice-presidents; H. L. Warburton, treasurer; and B. R. Sullivan, secretary. Directors, Bernice Downing, Henry Eberhard, R. A. Fatjo, L. G. Fatjo, J. J. Jones, William Loos, E. McQuoid, A. W. Nuttman, Henry R. Roth, C. A. Thompson, F. J. Vargas, H. L. Warburton. The Chamber, composed of the leading men of the business community, is concerned with the promotion of the city's material interests and general welfare, and is engaged in publicity with the object of acquainting the outside world with the inviting and salutary local conditions and opportunities.

Santa Clara stands preeminent among the cities and towns of California in the matter of municipal ownership of light and water, and is therefore immune from the restrictions usually levied upon these necessities by corporate control. Operating its own water, gas and electric plants, it is enabled to offer particular inducements to homeseekers in the reasonable expense of these utilities as well as in the low rate of taxation. Paved and graded streets and cement sidewalks are among the features that commend themselves to visitors. The town is surrounded with beautiful gardens, thrifty orchards and fields of vegetables, all of which add charm and makes this portion of the valley rank high as a place of abode.

Santa Clara's fruit and manufacturing concerns are the city's greatest asset. The Pratt-Low Preserving Company, the A. Block Packing Company, the Rosenberg Bros. & Company, the Eberhard Tanning Company, the Merrit Cement Company, the Homer Knowles Pottery, and the Pacific Manufacturing Company, are the largest of their kind on the Coast. These institutions are the mainstay of the community and will, as they continue their rapid progress and development, result in the greater growth and prosperity of Santa Clara and surrounding territory.

The Pratt-Low Preserving Company is situated a short distance south of the Southern Pacific Railway depot, and at its inception in 1905 three acres of ground were ample for its requirements. At the present time ten acres are devoted to this institution, which employes from a minimum of four hundred to a maximum of one thousand people during the fruit harvesting season, extending from June first to the middle of November. During this period cherries, apricots, peaches, pears, plums, grapes, and tomatoes are handled in large quantities, over ten million cans being necessary for containers; the finished product is distributed throughout the United States and Canada, as well as England, France, Italy, and the Orient. The extreme fertility and productivity of the soil in the immediate vicinity of this plant has had much to do with its growth, and. the sanitary conditions maintained, together with the care exercised in the selection and handling of the fruit, account for the great demand for, and wide distribution of, its products.

The A. Block Fruit Company, located on the northwestern lmits [sic] of Santa Clara, was established in 1873 by the late Abram Block, and is perhaps the largest deciduous fruit house in the world, packing in different years, according to the size and quality of the crop, from 500 to 900 carloads, all assorted and boxed by experienced hands and shipped to almost every corner of the globe--China, Europe, South America, South Africa. The Blocks make a specialty of quality fruits, the bulk of which is grown in their own orchards. They pack nothing except the best, their brand having a reputation second to none wherever it is marketed. California's finest pack of pears and plums, grown on Santa Clara soil, is harvested and packed by this local establishment.

The Pacific Manufacturing Company is one of the largest lumber concerns on the Pacific Coast. The plant covers over fifteen acres of ground and 500 men are constantly employed. The company was originally known as the Enterprise Mill & Lumber Company, but was reorganized and the name changed in September, 1880. The present officers are: James H. Pierce, president; John T. Kennedy, vice-president; R. T. Pierce, secretary and treasurer. The plant is valued at $300,000.

The Eberhard Tanning Company, formerly the Santa Clara Tannery, was started in 1849 by L. Wampach. He conducted it until 1854, when it was brought by Messing & Dixon. Shortly afterward F. C. Franck was admitted as a partner. Dixon soon sold out to Mr. Glein, and ultimately passed into the hands of Glein alone. In 1860 the firm became Glein & Albert, who kept up the business until 1864, when Glein again became sole possessor. In 1866 he sold out to Jacob Eberhard. In 1915 Jacob Eberhard died and the business has since been conducted by his sons and daughters. The plant occupies eleven acres on Grant Street, and is one of the largest tanneries in the world. A sale for the very superior leather turned out is found all over the world. Eighty-six men are employed the year round.

The present town officers are John J. Jones, William Loos, M. Silva, W. F. Hayward, P. Concannon, trustees: W. Walsh, marshal, A. J. Cronin, clerk; R. A. Fatjo, treasurer. School trustees--F. M. Harmon, C. E. Newton, Mrs. Lenora D. Emig, David Wallace and F. M. Merrill. There are two newspapers, the Journal, published by B. & B. Downing, and the News, published by Lawrence Lockney.

The Santa Clara Valley Aero Club has erected a spacious club house and rest room on the edge of the field fronting the State Highway on the outskirts of Santa Clara, and has extended the landing area so as to make it one of the very best in the state. Among the remarkable advantages of the flying park is the absence of trees or shrubbery. The ground is level, carpeted with clover, and makes an ideal landing point.

There are Presbyterian, Methodist, Episcopal and Catholic Churches in Santa Clara, and also the following societies, lodges, and clubs: Church Societies--Ladies' Improvement Society, Presbyterian; Ladies' Aid, Methodist; St. Margaret's Guild, Episcopal; Santa Clara Relief Society, Catholic. Lodges and Clubs--Foresters of America; I. O. of Red Men; Native Sons of the Golden West; Degree of Pocahontas; Woodmen of the World; Union Club; Sodality Club, Woman's Club, Shakespeare Club, Parent-Teachers' Club, King's Daughters, Sew and So Circle, Monday Afternoon Bridge Club, W. C. T. U., C. H. & R. Club, Girls' Club, St. Claire's Altar Society, Baseball Club, Socieade de Espirito Santa, Supreme Council, S. E. S.

University of Santa Clara

The leading educational institution of Santa Clara is the University of Santa Clara, formerly called Santa Clara College. It is located on the site of the old Mission of Santa Clara. On January 12, 1777, two Franciscan Padres, de la Pena and Murguia, planted the Mission cross on the banks of a little stream, called from that time the Guadalupe, at a spot now forming a part of the Laurel Wood farm, near Agnew. Two years later, a flood destroyed both church and monastery, and the padres in consequence sought a site on higher ground near the present railway station of Santa Clara. There, on November 9, 1781, they laid the foundation of a large adobe church and mission buildings. Three years later, on May 15, 1784, the new church was dedicated, by the venerable Padre Serra, then padre presidente of all the Missions of California.

This church, however, was so badly shattered by several earthquakes in 1812 and 1818, that the padres were forced to build anew. This time they chose the site which the university now occupies. There, on August 11, 1822, a still larger church was dedicated, which did service for many years till the violent earthquakes in the years 1865 and 1868 so cracked and weakened it that extensive repairs were necessary. By the year 1885 it had been almost entirely removed, haying been gradually replaced by the present frame building, the interior of which is a nearly perfect reproduction of its predecessors and retains some of the old ornaments and furniture and the ceiling of the sanctuary.

The Mission of Santa Clara was secularized in 1836 and passed from the hands of the devoted Padres into those of politicians who robbed Santa Clara of her lands and drove many of her children into the forests. When Rt. Rev. Joseph Sadoc Alemany, O. P., arrived as bishop of the diocese in 1850, he found only one Franciscan in charge of the Mission, which had been restored by the American Government, though in a sadly reduced form, most of the land being occupied by squatters. Desiring to save the remnants of the Mission and also to begin a college to meet the growing need of the times, the

Bishop invited the Society of Jesus to Santa Clara. The invitation was accepted and accordingly, on March 19, 1851, the Rev. John Nobili, S. J., laid the foundation of the University of Santa Clara and began the work. Fr. Nobili adapted the old adobe buildings to the requirements of a school and in a few years many students were in attendance. On April 28, 1855, the institution was chartered a university and for many years was known as Santa Clara College. In 1904, during the presidency of Father Robert E. Kenna, S. J., a large tract of land was bought at Mountain View, with the intention of transferring the college thither, but owing to lack of financial support, nothing was done.

After careful consideration, it was decided in 1910, that this plan would have to be abandoned, and that it was much wiser to improve the college in its present location and thus make the most of the equipment it then had. Accordingly, in 1911, two new reinforced concrete buildings, in the mission style of architecture, were begun.

In 1907 lectures were commenced with a view of preparing students to enter upon the professional courses in law, medicine and engineering. By 1911, the pre-medical course was thoroughly established and the law school was begun. Realizing, therefore, that the college was practically doing the work of a university, the president, Fr. James P. Morrissey, S. J., and the board of trustees, decided to adopt officially the name of "The University of Santa Clara," and this decision was publicly announced on April 29, 1912. Later, on June 16, 1912, with appropriate ceremonies in the presence of Most Rev. Patrick W. Riordan, D. D., Archbishop of San Francisco, of many present and former students, and of 30,000 spectators, with a pageant illustrative of the history of California and Santa Clara, the two new buildings were dedicated.

In the summer of 1912, engineers of high standing were engaged to carry on the courses in engineering, and in the next summer a thoroughly equipped laboratory for engineering was prepared. In the same year the amount of work required of law students was increased and almost all classes in law were thenceforth held at night.

The university now possesses the following constituent colleges: The College of Philosophy and Letters; The College of General Science; The Institute of Law; The College of Engineering, embracing Architectural, Civil, Electrical and Mechanical Engineering; The School of Pedagogy; and The Pre-Medical Course.

The following buildings are on the grounds:

The Mission Church--Built on the site of the old Mission Church of 1822, this building preserves many of the relics and decorations of the Franciscan days, though most of the walls have been removed. The Memorial Chapel--As a memorial of deceased students this handsome chapel was erected in 1887, during the presidency of Rev. Father Robert E. Kenna, S. J., through the generosity of many alumni and friends of Santa Clara College. Senior Hall--This hall, built in 1912 of reinforced concrete, furnishes on the second and third floors, private rooms for the older students. On the first floor are seven large classrooms for college classes, the Law Library and Study Hall, and the College of Engineering. In the basement are a large social hall, senior reading room, the practice court of the Institute of Law and the Palaeontological Museum. The Theater--All dramatic productions at Santa Clara since 1870, including the Passion Play and the Mission Play of Santa Clara, have been presented in this theater. Its stage is one of the largest for amateur productions in the West. The lower floor is fitted up as a dormitory for older students. The Literary Congress Building--For a time the meeting place of the House of Philhistorians and the Philalethic Senate was in this building. Now it houses the Philalethic Senate and the Department of Chemistry, and is used to some extent as a substitute for a Gymnasium. The Scientific Building--The first and second division study halls, the typewriting room, the physical cabinet and laboratory, the mineralogical museum, the biological laboratory and lecture-rooms, and the laboratory for wireless telegraphy are in this building. The Commercial Building--This building contains the high school classrooms and study hall, the commercial school, the physical laboratory for the high school, and the drafting room of the College of Engineering. The Infirmary Building--This structure, with its several wings, comprises the kitchen, the refectories, the infirmary with private rooms and ward, dormitories for younger students, clothes-room, the students' cooperative store, rooms for the individual practice of music, and the band-room. The Observatory--The equatorial telescope, seismographs, meteorological instruments and the study of the father in charge are housed in four small buildings. The Faculty Building--This structure of reinforced concrete, built in 1912, to replace the old Fathers' Building which was destroyed by fire in 1910, contains the offices of the chief executive officers of the university, parlors, the residence of the Fathers and Scholastics who are attached to the university or Parish of Santa Clara, and the Library of the university. The Engineering Laboratory--Forges,  machinery for wood-working and pattern-making, etc., used in the courses of the College of Engineering find place in this building.

Besides the buildings there are the athletic field of fifteen acres, two large baseball diamonds and an inner campus for track, tennis courts, baseball courts, etc. There are two semesters: one begins in August, other in January, after the holiday recess.

The board of trustees for 1919-20 were: Timothy Leo Murphy, S. J., president; Joseph William Riordan, S. J., secretary and treasurer; Aloysius Vincent Raggio, S. J.; Jerome Sextus Ricard, S. J.; Richard Henry Bell, S. J.; Cornelius Aloysius Buckley, S. J.; Charles M. Lorigan. Executive board--The president, Joseph William Riordan, S. J.,  Charles M. Lorigan. In 1921 Rev. Z. Maher succeeded Rev. Timothy Leo Murphy as president.

After the convention of the Jesuit order at Seattle in July, 1920, Father Murphy, president of the university, announced that a new building, to be used for instruction and dormitory purposes, would be erected on the university grounds as soon as plans could be completed. The building will follow closely the plan and style of Senior Hall, having three stories and a basement. It will be of concrete and will cost about $200,000. It will make it possible to accommodate 500 more students than formerly could be housed at the university and will no longer make it necessary for Father Murphy to refuse applications for enrollment. Enough applications are on file to have every room in the new addition filled immediately upon completion. In the spring of 1922 a drive for the purpose of raising $500,000 to enlarge and improve the university started with every promise of success.

The Last of the Mission Indians

A romantic figure whose life span reached a century and a quarter, was Marcello, the last of the Mission Indians. Charles D. South, Litt. D., present postmaster of Santa Clara, has written most entertainingly of this grand old fellow, whose history is a part of the history of the university. Mr. South's article appeared first in the March, 1920, number of The Columbiad, the organ of the Knights of Columbus. It is herewith given as a part of the history of Santa Clara.

"Of the twenty-one Catholic Indian Missions of California, the seventh in chronological order of establishment was that of Santa Clara de Asis, on the Arroyo Guadalupe, near the southern extremity of San Francisco Bay; and of the thousands of red men who were fed, clothed and educated there by the self-sacrificing sons of St. Francis, and who labored to upbuild and maintain this heroic Christian settlement in the territory of the Olhone, or Costano, tribes, the name of Marcello alone has survived, and his personality stands dimly outlined in solitary hugeness against the hazy background of California's pastoral age. Most famous of all the Mission Indians, Marcello, last of his race, joined the innumerable caravan only after his life had spanned, it is claimed, a full century and a quarter--a century and a quarter which more than 'tinges the sober twilight of the present with color of romance.'

"To the tribes which occupied the heart of the valley of Santa Clara at the advent of the Franciscans, according to local tradition. Marcello came a stranger, speaking a strange dialect. His heroic size and princely bearing seem to have lent credence to his boast that through his veins coursed the blood of kings. His ancestors are supposed to have been royal Yumans of the valley of the Colorado River, and this reputed scion of a great aboriginal family was instinctively hailed as a chief by the tawny sun-worshippers whose wigwams cast their shadow in the fretful Guadalupe. He was hailed instinctively as chief, perhaps, because his very figure was commanding, since he is said to have loomed above the squat Indians of Santa Clara as the Sequoia looms above the dwarf pines of the Sierra.

"An inscription in the San Jose Public Library informs the reader that Marcello's measure of life was 125 years; that he opened his eyes on the world in 1750, and was gathered to his fathers in 1875. The longevity of his existence may be the better appreciated by reference to characters and incidents of the history which civilization was inditing the while Marcello rose to manhood and stalked, an imposing figure, through the romantic Mission age, through the revolutionary Mexican period, through the epochal era of maddening gold strikes, and on down through the still greater era of American progress--an era in which not the mineral gold but the richer vegetable gold becomes the stable basis of prosperity.

"This Indian celebrity, who is said to have assisted Padre Thomas de la Pena to raise the storied Mission Cross near the laurelwood on the banks of the Guadalupe January 12, 1777, and who is quoted as having averred that he had seen Lieutenant Jose de Moraga raise the royal emblem of Spain at the founding of the Pueblo de San Jose, was supposedly toying with wampum and feathers in the wigwam of his father when young George Washington, leading a band of colonials, accompanied the British General Braddock and his veterans on the disastrous march against Fort Duquesne. Assuming that 1750 was the date of Marcello's nativity, he was five years of age when Wolfe's intrepid redcoats stormed the Heights of Abraham and when Montcalm heroically welcomed the death that shut from his vision the surrender of Quebec. He was fifteen when the British Parliament passed the Stamp Act which precipitated the American Revolution; and when the Liberty Bell rang out the glad tidings of the Declaration of Independence in 1776 he was enlisting in the service of Padre Junipero Serra for a peaceful invasion of the valleys of Alta California. The chief, as Marcello was called, had passed his thirty-ninth year when Washington was elected President of the United States, and had he survived one year longer he might have participated in the first centennial of American liberty.

"Following out the natal-day hypothesis, Chief Marcello was nineteen years old when Napoleon Bonaparte was born, and when the French Revolution burst into throne-consuming flame this Indian was marching into a wilderness of the unknown west with the cowled Grey Friars of St. Francis. He was fifty-four when Napoleon, at the age of thirty-five, was crowned Emperor of the French; fifty-six when Bonaparte reached the zenith of his career at Austerlitz, and sixty-five when the star of the Corsican genius went down in blood at Waterloo; and, moreover, it may not prove uninteresting to note that this towering aboriginal was still conspicuous in the ranks of the living, having reached his hundred and twentieth year, when the third Napoleon, after overthrowing the French Republic, was himself overthrown at Sedan.

"Marcello (who had beheld California in its tribal stage and then successively under Spain, Mexico and the United States) ultimately surrendered to the inevitable; and, finally, before this super-Indian looked his last upon the sun there was already reigning on the Austrian throne that ill-starred monarch of the House of Hapsburg, the late Emperor Francis Joseph, whose edict in 1914 set Europe ablaze and plunged the world into a war so colossal as to render small in comparison the sum total of destruction in all the wars of Alexander, Caesar and Napoleon.

"According to trustworthy authority, Chief Marcello was a veritable walking encyclopedia of Mission history; yet nobody in his time saw fit to make a transcript of his story and that possible source of infinitude of details of the early annals of Santa Clara is now shut off forever. Nobody living knows exactly where the first Santa Clara Mission stood.Marcello knew the location; but, odd as it may seem, little interest appears to have been taken in the subject until after Marcello's demise. When the book was eternally closed, the people became eager to read.

"This copper-skinned giant, in his prime, stood six feet two inches in his bare feet, weighed 250 pounds, was rawboned and possessed of prodigious strength. There is no evidence other than unauthenticated stories handed down by the old Spanish families that he had assisted in the erection of the wooden frames of the original Mission on the banks of the Guadalupe, and it is not certain that he witnessed the destruction of the settlement by flood in 1779; but there is plenty of corroboration for his story that he aided Padre Jose Antonio Murguia to build the adobe Mission on the second site, now marked by a simple white cross which stands some two hundred paces west of the Southern Pacific Railroad depot at Santa Clara.

"Anterior to the coming of the Friars--long before Marcello had set eyes on this fair scene the Spanish Sergeant Ortega, at the behest of the renowned Captain Gaspar de Portola, in 1769, had led a band of scouts along the southern borders of San Francisco Bay and had described the future Santa Clara valley as 'The Plain of Oaks.' Subsequently, for a number of years, the region was designated as the 'Meadow of San Bernardino,' and the beautiful name, Santa Clara was the happy selection of the illustrious Junipero Serra.

"While the honor of founding this Mission is shared conjointly by Padre Pena and Lieutenant Moraga, the famous Colonel d'Anza, who had led from Mexico two hundred colonists to form the village of San Francisco and the civilian nucleus of the Mission of Santa Clara, was regrettably deprived of the historical prominence due him through a military exigency which compelled his sudden return to San Diego. Thus was his lieutenant left to celebrate the crowning of labors which owed their successful fruition to the masterful preliminary achievements of his brilliant superior officer.

"In 1827, the population of Santa Clara included 1,500 Indians, and the comnion property was 15,000 cattle, as many sheep, and 2,800 horses. The lands reserved for the native converts who accepted a settled life extended from the Guadalupe to the summit of the mountain range on the west, a domain of 80,000 acres, exempt from taxation during Spanish rule. Under Mexican authority, the Missions were secularized and plundered, and there soon remained only a vestige of their once prosperous communities.

"Marcello had acted as foreman of native laborers who constructed the Alameda under the direction of Padre Jose Viader, the assistant of the venerable Padre Magin Catala, at the dawn of the nineteenth century. When his years had told a hundred, the aged chief found pleasure in traversing the foliage-canopied league which separates San Jose from Santa Clara, and delighted in entertaining fellow pedestrians with tales of the days when the great willow trees, which in summer afforded impenetrable shade along the winding road; had in their infancy been tenderly nursed by him and his companions after the slips had been borne to the Camino Real in bundles on the backs of tawny laborers. He described how the trees had been planted in three rows extending all the way from the second Mission site to the second site of the Pueblo San Jose, and pointed out with his staff the courses of the long zanjas or ditches which carried water from the Guadalupe to the nursling willows.

"The destruction of the second Mission by an earthquake in 1818 led to the selection of the third site, on which recently the imposing structures of the University of Santa Clara have been reared. Of the third Mission buildings, the old church alone remains, and of this church Marcello--still vigorous at the age of seventy, straight as a poplar, was the overseer of construction. The Mission church has undergone many changes and alterations, but it still retains the original altar, the unique Indian paintings and the impressive wooden crucifix celebrated in Charles Warren Stoddard's miracle story of the sainted Magin Catala--El Padrecito Santo; and from its majestic towers, the historic bells, presented to Santa Clara by King Carlos V--bells, with music voices that have never faltered--still summon the faithful to devotion, still charm the air morning, noon and evening with their silvery prelude to the aspirations of the Angelus.

"Marcello loved these bells, and doubtless they recalled to his memory many a face and many a voice and many a scene of a vanished aged. At their ropes his stout arms had toiled full many a time. They knelled his passage from the house of clay; and, if spirits of the dead are conscious of the things done in the abode of the quick, the soul of the chief must find joy in the prayers that rise to heaven at the nightly bell-call to DeProfundis.

"With the sequestration of the Missions, the large majority of the Indians dispersed to the surrounding hills and again became wedded to the savage life. Marcello was more fortunate for a period, but he, too, fell from his high estate. He was ninety-six years old when, in 1846, Governor Pio Pico granted him a veritable principality known as the Ulistac rancho,situated between Santa Clara and the San Francisco Bay. It was a landed estate worthy of a chief, and Marcello became exceedingly vain of his reputed royal descent. The shadow of war fell on the country and, when the shadow passed, a new flag--the Stars and Stripes--floated over California. Then Marcello, in his ignorance of law and in his blind eagerness to obtain the wherewithal to satisfy his cravings for worldly pleasures introduced by reckless newcomers, for a few paltry pieces of sordid gold, signed away to a land-grabber all his vast domain. It was then divided into small farms, and years afterward,  Marcello was accustomed to plod from house to house in the sovereignty he had lost, to request and to receive food and raiment from his successors, whimsically regarding such favors not as a charity but as a right.

"At the age of a hundred the chief was forced to content himself with a humble cabin donated by a generous farmer in a remote section of Pio Pico's grant. In gratitude for Marcello's early services to the Padres, and eager to make comfortable the old chief's declining days, the Jesuit Fathers of Santa Clara, apprised of his hardship, invited him to abide permanently under their roof. The big chief, however, had discovered an aversion for any suggestion of celibacy. He had heard the call of the world, as it were, and his aboriginal nature was again dominant.

"Far back in Mission days, seeds of Christian virtue had been planted in the soul of Marcello. In the half-century since the destruction of the Mission, that seed had been sealed up in the dark breast of the Indian, dry and unnurtured, like the seed in the old church wall. For half a century the chief had pursued the way of the world in flagrant disregard of Mission precept and example. At length, in extreme old age, the spiritual seed, dormant for fifty years in this son of the wilderness, responded to the nurturing tears of repentance and flowered under the smile of Divine mercy, and Marcello passed away with the comforting hope that, in a better sphere, he would rejoin the holy Padres in immortal life. Ninety-eight years in the Santa Clara valley must have confused Marcello's memory with their procession of changing scenes and characters; First, the savage gives way before the conquering Caucasian; next, the Mission rises where the wigwam stood; then, the forests fade, and spire and dome appear, as in a dream, and, by what Ruskin terms the 'art of kings and king of arts,' civilization conjures fabulous riches from earths hidden cells.

'Where stalked the bronze-skinned brave
In savage pride of power.
The paleface treads the Indian's grave.'

"Marcello came, in 1777, a stranger to a strange land, and again, at the last, in 1875, still more of a stranger in a land stranger than of old, he crosses life's divide, hopeful of rest after a strenuous day. The red man disappears from view. The paleface garners the earth and, with his monuments of trade, usurps the upper spaces of the air; and where, for nearly a century, this Indian colossus flourished, like a mighty oak, pitting its knotty bulk against the ravages of time and the elements--where, for ages, his striking figure was as familiar as the gray adobes and the Spanish tiles--the people of today, save for a few literary pilgrims groping among the dustheaps of California history, know not that there ever existed such a being as Marcello, super-Indian
of the Santa Clara Mission."

Source: Sawyers, Eugene T. History of Santa Clara County, Los Angeles, Calif; Historic Record Company, 1922.

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