Description

    Gold Rush Era Autograph Document Representing a Report by San Francisco Commissioners Advising Against the Expansion of Tolls by the Market and California Street Wharf Company. Two pages, 8" x 12.5", July 29, 1851. This period retained autograph copy is a report by an appointed committee of three prominent San Francisco businessmen in response to the Market and California Street Wharf Company's intention to expand their right to collect tolls to owners of property fronting Market and California streets near the wharf. The committee, consisting of J. A. Morse, D. J. Tallant, and James King of William "cannot believe that such was the intention of the grantors nor does the plain language of the grant sustain such a construction". James King of William further adds "that the company cannot be surprised at the above conclusion as they were fairly warned that such was the intention of the contract." During this Gold Rush period the California and Market Street wharves would have been a lucrative business for the Wharf Company as the majority of gold-field bound men arrived via San Francisco via boat. The dockage fees for a medium-sized ship to dock at the wharf might run $100 per day; larger ships $200. The company also had an exclusive right to levy tolls for goods, livestock, and merchandise landed at the dock. They were apparently trying to expand their tolls to include existing property fronting the representative streets. Of historical interest, James King of William later became the editor of the San Francisco Daily Evening Bulletin and in 1856 one of his editorials so angered San Francisco society that he was shot while on his way to work by James Casey, the conservative editor of the San Francisco Sunday Times. A document touching many important aspects of San Francisco and California history, in fine condition.

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    Auction Dates
    May, 2010
    22nd Saturday
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