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The land of gold : reality versus fiction.


Book Summary

[xii, [13]-300 p. : 20 cm,--Howes' U.S.IANA H-401. Wheat 96, Cowan page 274: "An entertaining book. One chapter is closed with the charming remarkthat "It is my unbiased opinion that California can and does furnish the best bad things that are obtainable in America.: Land of Gold is one of the most famous works on the California Gold Rush. Cowan also notes that the work includes "one of the best accounts we have of early San Francisco." though Helper generally ridicules and is quite critical of life in California. He claimed that the publisher forced him to eliminate certain criticisms of slavery based on his observation of free labor in California. After Helper's 1851-1854 sojourn in the Golden State, he returned to South Carolina where in 1857, he wrote a work establishing his greater fame as that rarest of birds, a Southern abolitionist. The Impending Crisis of the South caused a sensation, far greater at the time than that produced by Uncle Tom's Cabin. Lincoln appointed Helper as United States consul in Buenos Aires from 1861 to 1866 and following the war, Helper changed feathers and became a vocal white supremacist. In subsequent years, he singlemindedly promoted a schme to build an intercontinental railroad connecting North and South America which would displace back and brown peoples by whites. Born into poverty, his monomania on the railway plan 9he came to term himself "the new Christopher Columbus"), returned him in later life to that state. Despondent and bitter, he committed suicice in Washington and was buried by strangers.--Auction catalog notation,Lot #94 in Kolbe Numismatic literature sale #111 (Jan. 9, 2010),Original morocco-grained brown cloth, intricately stamped in blind. Gilt lettering on spine with gilt impression of a miner with pick and pan found at base,catalog 2010-12-14]. American Numismatic Society copy.
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