Eldorado: Adventures in the Path of Empire (California Legacy) (California Legacy Book)

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9781890771362: Eldorado: Adventures in the Path of Empire (California Legacy) (California Legacy Book)
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Bayard Taylor was among the thousands of young men who spilled into California in the tumultuous year 1849. Dispatched by Horace Greeley of the New York Tribune, Taylor was to report on the madness, exuberance, and upheaval of the California gold rush. Traveling throughout the state, Taylor witnessed the explosive growth of San Francisco and the instantaneous creation of Sierra townships. He traversed the nearly deserted lands of the Spanish missions and attended the constitutional convention that set the boundaries and forged the laws for the new state.

Now newly introduced by James D. Houston, with annotations by Robert Senkewicz, this cornerstone of California literature is once again available to a wide audience. Roger Kahn (Boys of Summer), himself once a journalist with the New York Herald Tribune, provides an afterword.

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About the Author:

Bayard Taylor was born in 1825 in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania. A restless student, Taylor was apprenticed to a printer at age seventeen. In 1844 his first volume of verse, Ximena, was published. He then arranged with the Saturday Evening Post and the United States Gazetteer to finance a trip abroad in return for publication rights to his travel letters, which were compiled in the extremely popular Views Afoot (1846). In 1847 he began a career in journalism in New York. Eldorado was published in 1850. His Poems of the Orient appeared in 1855. Taylor continued his trips to remote parts of the world--—to the Orient, to Africa, to Russia--and became renowned as the Marco Polo of his day. In 1862 he became secretary of the U.S. legation at St. Petersburg, Russia. Of his works in this later period, the translation of Faust (1870-–71) remains his best known. Taylor died in Berlin, Germany, in 1878.

Review:

''With his keen eye and penchant for details, Taylor bestowed upon these tumultuous and anarchistic times an almost cinematic quality. Writing as he traveled, he managed to combine a sense of the poetic with straightforward historical documentation, underpinned with a wry sense of humor.... Widely regarded as a classic of western literature, Taylor's lively chronicle of the birth of modern California has lost nothing in terms of its initial freshness and vitality in the interim.''--Rain Taxi Review of Books

''Of all books written about the Gold Rush and the Forty-Niners, Eldorado is one of the most compelling narratives....A California version of the Federalist Papers.'' --The San Francisco Chronicle

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