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A History of California: The Spanish Period

Charles Edward CHAPMAN (1880 - 1941)

If you have ever wondered why Spain (and not Japan, which was so so much better positioned to do it) was first to “settle” the Golden State, this book is for you. Professor Chapman has produced a comprehensive and highly entertaining popular history of “the Californias,” beginning with a nod to geography and the native races and carrying on through to the arrival of Old Glory in 1848. What might in less capable hands have proved a heavy historical loaf to digest is lightened and leavened with the yeast of “interesting incident” throughout. Consider the plight of the newly-appointed Governor of Alta California, Pedro Fages, whose own wife, the fiery Catalan Doña Eulalia Callis, who, when she wasn't giving away to the “naked indians” all of her own clothes (and the Governor's, too) secretly petitioned the authorities in Mexico for his removal from office. The author relates at some length the romantic story of beautiful Conceptión Argüello, who chose to wait faithfully all her life for the return of the rascally Razánov the Russian, with whom she had fallen in love. The tragic conclusion of this affair is touchingly imagined in an extended quote from the famous poem by Bret Harte.(1) But not all is frivolity. The historical meat is here as well, in breadth and in detail. The author's stated purpose is “to show that California history is important as well as interesting,—that the great Anza expedition of 1775-1776 and the Yuma massacre of 1781 demand inclusion in any comprehensive history of the United States,—that California, while it indeed has a romantic history to tell, has also a great deal more than that to contribute to the cherished traditions of the American people.” (Preface) (1) Conceptión de Argüello. by Bret Harte, Presidio de San Francisco, 1800. - Summary by Steven Seitel

Genre(s): Early Modern, Modern (19th C)

Language: English

Section Chapter Reader Time
Play 00 Preface Steven Seitel
00:09:06
Play 01 The Effect of Geography upon California History Steven Seitel
00:18:51
Play 02 The Indians Steven Seitel
00:29:57
Play 03 The Chinese along the Pacific Coast in Ancient Times Steven Seitel
00:24:45
Play 04 The Japanese Opportunity in the Pacific in the Early Modern Period Steven Seitel
00:30:26
Play 05 Cortés and California Steven Seitel
00:28:42
Play 06 Origin and Application of the Name California Steven Seitel
00:37:17
Play 07 The Northern Mystery and the Discovery of Alta California Steven Seitel
00:34:26
Play 08 The Manila Galleon Steven Seitel
00:34:33
Play 09 Drake and New Albion Steven Seitel
00:39:16
Play 10 Gali and Rodríguez Cermenho Steven Seitel
00:30:14
Play 11 Sebastián Vizcaíno Steven Seitel
00:48:20
Play 12 The Overland Advance to the California Border, 1521-1687 Steven Seitel
00:37:33
Play 13 Sea Approaches from New Spain to California, 1615-1697 Steven Seitel
00:37:17
Play 14 The Jesuits in Baja California, 1697-1768 Steven Seitel
00:35:36
Play 15 Progress of the Idea of Overland Advance to the Californias, 1697-1765 Steven Seitel
00:56:17
Play 16 José de Gálvez Steven Seitel
00:24:31
Play 17 The Spanish Occupation of Alta California Steven Seitel
00:44:27
Play 18 The Pacification of Sonora Steven Seitel
00:26:59
Play 19 The Precarious Footing of the Early Settlements in Alta California Steven Seitel
00:26:52
Play 20 The Russian and English Agressions in the Pacific Northwest Steven Seitel
00:35:50
Play 21 Antonio Bucareli Steven Seitel
00:31:14
Play 22 Bucareli's Attention to the Local Problems of the Californias Steven Seitel
00:26:33
Play 23 Juan Bautista de Anza Steven Seitel
00:19:35
Play 24 The Founding of San Francisco Steven Seitel
00:32:35
Play 25 The Commandancy General of the Frontier Provinces Steven Seitel
00:33:21
Play 26 The Yuma Massacre Steven Seitel
00:28:55
Play 27 The Aftermath Steven Seitel
00:20:37
Play 28 Junípero Serra Steven Seitel
00:29:50
Play 29 Fermín Francisco de Lasuén Steven Seitel
00:48:23
Play 30 Spanish Californian Institutions Steven Seitel
00:33:12
Play 31 The Romantic Period, 1782-1810 Steven Seitel
00:49:37
Play 32 Inland Explorations and Indian Wars, 1804-1823 Steven Seitel
00:48:58
Play 33 Era of the Wars of Independence, 1810-1822 Steven Seitel
00:40:38
Play 34 Under Mexican Governors, 1822-1835 Steven Seitel
00:43:32
Play 35 Waiting for Old Gloriy, 1835-1847 Steven Seitel
00:31:11