San Francisco: Lith. & published by Quirot & Co., [n.d., 1850s]. Pictorial letter sheet, 10 3/4 x 8 1/4 inches, on blue paper. With the blank conjugate leaf attached. Some edge wear, including small tears, as well as light wrinkling. A few old ink smudges on the conjugate leaf. Very good. Item #WRCAM48416
An evocative and relatively scarce California pictorial letter sheet, giving two views of life in the gold diggings. The upper illustration shows three miners seated around a table made of wooden planks supported by tree branches. The miner in the center is weighing gold on a scale over a pan. The miners who flank him are both armed, one with a knife and the other with a pistol. Another pistol, as well as a rifle, lays on the table. The table also holds bottles, plates, a pair of horseshoes, and a large loaf of bread, which from its well-developed crumb structure appears to be a loaf of sourdough. The lower illustration shows the same miner who was weighing his gold laid out asleep under a tree near a fire. Beside him are guns, a powder horn, a knife, and a satchel, and a large bag (filled with gold?) rests under his right elbow. The three dream bubbles above him show scenes of a miner prospecting, and a ship being loaded with heavy bags. A nice California pictorial letter sheet, showing the reality and the dreams of life in the mines. BAIRD, CALIFORNIA'S PICTORIAL LETTER SHEETS 170. CLIFFORD LETTER SHEET COLLECTION 190. PETERS, CALIFORNIA ON STONE, p.76 & plate 33 (the Britton & Rey version).