Two Years Before The Mast A Personal Narrative Of Life At Sea By Richard Henry Dana, Jr.





























































































































 -   Yet, long before his death, he had seen the
narrative of his sailor days recognized as an American classic.
Time - Page 6
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Yet, Long Before His Death, He Had Seen The Narrative Of His Sailor Days Recognized As An American Classic. Time Has Not Diminished Its Reputation.

We read it to-day not merely for its simple, unpretentious style; but for its clear picture of sea

Life previous to the era of steam navigation, and for its graphic description of conditions in California before visions of gold sent the long lines of "prairie schooners" drifting across the plains to unfold the hidden destiny of the West.

California and her Missions

It is not easy to realize that, during the stirring days when the eastern coast-line of North America was experiencing the ferment of revolution, the Pacific seaboard was almost totally unexplored, its population largely a savage one. But Spain, long established in Mexico, was slowly pushing northward along the California coast. Her emissaries were the Franciscan friars; her method the founding of Indian missions round which, in due course, should arise towns intended to afford harbor for Spanish ships and to serve as outposts against the steady encroachments of Russia, who, from Alaska, was reaching out toward San Francisco Bay.

Thus began the white settlement of California. San Diego Mission was founded in 1769; San Carlos, at Monterey, in 1770; San Francisco, in 1776; Santa Barbara, in 1786. For the general guardianship of these missions a garrison, or presidio, was in each case provided. It was responsible not only for the protection of the town thus created, but for all the missions in the district.

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