Frank Baker

The Standard
Cassville, Georgia
March 11, 1852 , Page 2
Transcribed by:  


We are permitted to make an extract from a private letter to a gentleman in this county, from Mr. NATHANIEL T. WOFFORD formerly of this town who is now in California:

Culloma, California, Jan. 8, 1852.

Owing to sickness, I have done no work here yet, but will go at it in a few days.  Charles Wofford and Charles Rich are making about 12 pennyweights a day.  William and Thomas Rich hired out for one week at 15 pennyweights a day.  They do this in order to understand the mines, and so they can hereafter work to advantage.  I have got a mine that I think will yield an ounce per day.  I took a pan today and panned out about $3 worth in an hour.  I think when we get used to the mines, we can average from 8 to 10 pennyweights per day.  Some of the Georgians here are making from 15 to 20 pennyweights per day.

I cannot tell you much about the country for I have been about but little.  What I have seen of it, it convinces me that it is the finest country in the world.  The climate is mild and not changeable like it is in Georgia.  People are beginning to farm a good deal; they will give hands $100 per month to farm, and board them.  Lands are nothing to clear; the worst of it is to fence it—you either have to ditch it or fence it with pine poles.  It is the greatest hog country I ever saw.  You can raise as many as you want with little trouble.  I heard a fellow say he saw a middling that was 14 inches thick.

We were three days coming from Savannah to Havana.  We stayed at Havana 6 days and the people treated us with great contempt—if we walked the streets they would hollow (sic) at us on every side and make fun of us.  We went on the steamer Philadelphia, which took us in six days from Havana to Chagres.  We then got on a little whale boat, and was three days going up the river.  It is the ugliest river that ever run.  It is about half filled with bottles-I think I have seen about five hundred floating down the river.  The first night we stayed with an American, and the second with a native, or what we would call a Negro.  When we went to bed, we lay under an old shelter, and slept on bulls’ hides.  We were two days crossing the Isthmus.  The mud was about one foot and a half deep.  We had to pay $100 for tickets from Panama.  I had $21 left, and half the crowd did not have a cent.  They liked to have starved us to death on the steamer—give us pickled beef that out stunk carion, and mush once a week.  When we arrived at San Francisco, we did not have money enough to buy us a meal’s victuals.  We left FRANK BAKER in the hospital and he died the next day after we left.


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