Veni, vidi, vici: firsthand accounts from the land of gold

There’s nothing like first impressions Here are three I’ve read recently. California: Its Gold and its Inhabitants by Sir Henry Vere Huntley. Out of print but available online, courtesy of the Internet Archive. Sir Henry Vere Huntley (1795-1864) was a British naval officer who served in many exotic locales during his extensive service career. Described by the Dictionary of Canadian Biography as an “impetuous man, prone to direct and dramatic actions” Huntley led a life of energy, intrigue, and some profound screw ups.  During the thick of the California gold rush, he found himself in San Francisco as the gentleman representative of the Anglo California Gold Mining Company. Huntley’s stint in the far West was troubled from the start –...