This letter was copied from the original. The original was received from Bessie Leona Tiffany, a granddaughter of Arthur Tyrrell and a sister of my grandfather, Ray Winthrop Justus.
Page One Weeverville. Trinity Co. Call. Oct. 20th. 1852 Dear Friends I have once more taken my pen to inform you that I am well and I hope this may reach you the same Hieram is allso well he and I have bin to work to gether most of the time this summer and only made expences we worked at Canyon Creek most of the time daming and flooming it but it did not pay us we are now at Weeverville Hiram is to work for eight dollars a day drifting I have bin getting five dollars and a half a day winlesing and shoveling and board our selves which cost over - dollar a peace a day at the prices we have to pay for provisions and cook it our selves to hire our board it would cost fourteen dollars a week a peace. I am wating patiently for a letter as I have not received any since last spring that was directed to Hi. and me Sacramento Hi has received two from Jane one by the way of Sonora it was wrote in the spring the other from Shasta dated July 30th she says in it she has not received a letter from him but got her news by way of my letter he has wrote as many as three and I have wrote two before this and sent papers twice the Shasta Courier directed to E J Tyrrell one to J R Patrige. the mail comes again to morrow if I git aleter all right if not the same all right. Whoraw for Pierce King and Democracy Page Two I will give you a sketch of my views of California I look at it as on the extreme in evry point the climate is from verry warm to perpetual snow and as far as I have seen it is verry Healthy I have heard of Cho---a and other diseases in some parts verry bad but the way people live in some places it is a wonder to me that all dont die that thare is thare The soil is from the richest to the poorest and lays from the Ocean beach to everlasting snow on the mountains the productions are as numberous as I ever saw in any Country I have seen oring on the tree agrowing and could see the mountains white with snow at the same time Figs Apples Pears Peaches and grapes growin abundance the vine of all --nds grows well Pumpkin Squash and mellons allso all kinds of vegitables raised in the garden for the size and weight of some of then I will refur you to the agriculteral faire at Sacramento the acount is in the Shasta Courier that I sent you which you will received befoure you do this if post masters have done their duty The timber is from the largest to the smallest I have bin told from twenty two feet in diamenter down but the largest I have seen was eight and nine feet in diameter Hi tels me of an oak that he saw it was fourty feet in circumferance up above breast high thare is four kinds oak as a general thing it is worthless for timber five kinds of pine two of fir one of redwood or sedar all valuable for timber whare it can be used thare is various other kinds of timber which answers for firewood I have not bin whare large and tall timber Page Three grows it is at Trinidad and humbolt bays and that section of the country The mountains and valies are inhabited by Grizly Brown black and Cinnamon Bears and California Lions Panthers all kinds of wolves and various kinds of the cat species various kinds of Squirels Elk Deer Antelope and rabits wild goats and mountain Sh--- wild Cattle Ho--- and Hogs Mules and Jackasses Thare is various kinds snakes the rattle snake is the worst they are plenty in places allso venemous insects Tirantalus Scorpion Santipede Hornets wasps Bumblebee (no honey bees) musquetoes flees and lice (no bed bugs that I have seen) plenty of horned toads and lisards As for the feathered tribe thare is all that you have thare or substitutes for them except the wild Turkey Geese and D----- -re plenty the rivers and Creeks are allso on the extream some of them at times is large enough to float Steam Boats at other times allmost dry they are generaly well stored with fish -- the best kinds I have seen Salmon from three feet down. The watter in the mountains is cold and good as I go down the valies it gits warmer and is not so good the springs in the valies are more or les warm but the watter from them as far as I can learn is healthy thare is salt soda sulpher and other kinds of springs that the watter is mixed with minerals that gives it a nasty taste I will now try and tell you what I think of --- people in this country Hiram has wrote his views in a letter to Jane I hope she has received it Friends your imagination must help me First think of what atracts most people to come here and you will see it is riches the riches of California atracts from the states many of the scheming and raskaly persons and from most evry other inhabited country on the globe well the- -re here mixed in a m--- each and all striveing Page Four to git rich (many of them I would as soon try to understand a goos as their talk) it is natural for each to try to excel the other by so dooing and takeing the advantage evry chance disputes and quirels arise which terminate in the death of persons on both sides. and some of the foreigners have to leave the place and others takes their place. think of yankies and irish on the Canalls and railroads then think of the mixed mess here is it to be thaught strange that the pistels --- a knife should be yo---d in a crowd like the one we have here when they do as they do in the states with only americans Irish and English. I think it is not. I have spoken of the working class or miners mostly so far I will now speak of two of the most dispisable clases of Gods creation in my estimation. they are gamblers and h_____s they go hand to gether thare is hundreds of them here and what one cant cheat steal or rob from the honest and industrious the other tries to coax from them Both clases are often succesful then the miner goes back to his dig----s to git more gold perhaps to spend the same way if the gambl-- -- unsuccesful he wont work he has no digings he tries to make a ---ing without working I will not say that he steals horses and mules and murders men along the roads but such deeds are done who dose it may be the miner that has bin gambling and lost his money and dose these deeds in order to make up his los if it is the ill goten gain soon goes from him into the hands of the gamblers and they partake of the stolen property while the man comits more deeds of perhaps robery and murder to renew his purse again and thus becomes indirectly a gambler and is no better nor worse then they are. I put gambling robing murdering all down to gether one leading directly to the other Thare is three clases of cientific men here mostly from the states. they are lawyers doctors and preachers th--- is no youse for the first as the sivel law is little regarded not much for the second on acount of the good health of the country and the last for so many of them turn gamblers but thare is exceptions one preached in Weeverville last tuesday eavening he has the aperance of a fine man I think his discourse a good one I heard him preach at Shasta last spring he is a methodist I believe I shal now wait for the mail and see if I git aleter The mail arived to day Oct 21st no letter for me it le---- next monday then I shall send this Page Five This is to you Eliza Oct 23rd As I have plenty of time and room I will write a little more but I do not know what is going on thare and I cannot tell you what to do only to say as I did before do as you think best I wish you was here and the children because I dont see as I can git money to come home and pay your Father and Nathan if I git money enough I shall come home in the spring if not I shall send some money and stay longer Dont think because I stay a way that I have forgotten you and the children or that I dont care any thing for you and them. Time nor distance from you cannot erase the afections that I have for you and them. Thare is not a day pases by but a part of my mind is thare and I look forward to the time when I shall meet you and other friends once more I can not discribe the anxious feelings that I have for fear that things may go a miss with you and the children when I speak of the children I mean Henry as well as the other two and I think it my duty to look to his welfare as much as theirs and I hope you do the same if things goes wrong with him they will go wrong with me more then if it was one of the others it is through you and with the asistance of your Farther and Mothe (that I think you can git by asking) that I look for his and their protection until I return. I believe you will not disapoint me As for your self you know how to manage with out any instructions from me as long as I am so great a distance from you. on the other side I will tel you what to tel Mother Page Six Tell her I have one request to make of her it is that she will not think that I have forgotten her allthough I am far from her memory glides back to my younger days when I loked to her for what I should eat drink and ware and from that time up until the day I die her instructins has bin and will be before me and as I look at them I must say they are good and that I cannot go wrong and follow them and when I go contrary to them it is an eror of the head more than the heart her image will be in my mind as long as life and season has its sway. and I hope and trust we may live to meet again I think I have wrote enough this time to keep you studing until I Write again as the subject is so mixed up and so little explained I think you will not want any more this time. you must over look bad spelling I send by this my best respects to you after you to all all others that you think proper to give them to Arthur Tyrrell. to E.J. Tyrrell P.S. If you receive this and answer it direct your letter to Shasta. As long as I have room I will allso state that I like the country here with all the eavels spoken of it is the people and their acts that I dont like. but time and the good acts of the people will do a way most of the eavle ones. Then California will take her place the richest and best state in the union A T Hiram says the country is God forsaken I do not believe it
Ray W. Justus
1331 West Folley Street
Chandler, AZ 85224-7511