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Author Topic: Before the Gold Rush  (Read 691 times)

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Offline Oceanbeach

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Before the Gold Rush
« on: April 02, 2012, 08:00:18 PM »
During my years of HIV, I have kept busy with projects just to keep my mind active.  Currently, I am involved with a documentary on a family who settled in California during Gold Rush days (1849). 

A family of Scottish decent came from Missouri.  The men and the boys traveled by wagon train.  The young boys were the most expendable so they were put on watch at night in case of attack.  The women and the girls came by clipper ship around the horn.  The cost in those days was around $300 and advertised as "luxury."  Many were standing room only with a severe shortage of fresh food and water.

I found a non-profit which keeps the records of the Oregon/California Trail participants.  The head of the family as we know it was 16 at the time and I'm waiting for email from the non-profit for a list of travelers on the wagon train.

The shipping company records were lost in history so, there is no record of when the women and on what ship.  Many of the ships were deserted by the crew when they arrived in San Francisco.  The ships were left thrashing about on the rocks because golf fever struck.  One of the ships was turned into a hotel and demolished to make room for the Transamerica pyramid building.

I am involved because I know about 6 of the families and an award winning cinematographer.  The oldest living family member is in his 90's and reportedly, has a sharp memory.  He is the Star of the show.  My task is to research the history books to make a list of questions for the participants and find photos.

We are filming in May and the finished product will be on PBS, probably next year.  When the Bagpipes are playing, people from miles around know a family member has passed.  I also need to find the family of a man who videotaped an early work on the families.  My only lead is a tombstone and the phone book.

After the Gold Rush (with apologies to Neil Young), I am redesigning a legal web site which I have referred to as "the mother ship."  I have found the site on over 100 servers around the world, when I get the 100 links published on "the mother ship", design the three more sites and link together, the four sites, my "mother ship" will be "a space station."  I hope all the stuff I read is true.

Speaking of reading... Friends of the Library in the city have a little shop at the front of the main branch.  I bought:"Bogey, The Good Bad Guy," which was written by a Time reporter around Vietnam war time.  This book is fun.  Also found "The Help" and have not seen the movie but the elderly volunteer said, the book disturbed her, so I bought it.  Have not read it yet so, I have no opinions yet.

I get to host a small block party on Cinco De Mayo, serving Cadillac Margaritas.  17 years of AIDS and projects, I have fun.   8)  Have the best day


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