Monthly Archives: January 2019

A Sunday in Oroville

According to the editor of the Butte Record, Sundays in Oroville were wild and raucous. Other cities in the state had progressed in civilization, but not Oroville. No quiet, peaceful Sabbath in this city — the streets were crowded, the … Continue reading

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Marketing Techniques — Forty-Niner style

How do you catch the reader’s eye in an old-time newspaper? If you were a miner reading the Butte Record at Bidwell Bar in 1855, there’s one advertisement that would stand out, especially if you were hungry or thirsty. (Especially … Continue reading

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From the Butte Record

Last Saturday I went to the Chico Museum to hear David Little, recently retired editor of the Chico Enterprise-Record, speak on the history of our hometown newspaper. The Butte Record, published at Bidwell Bar, was the first newspaper in Butte … Continue reading

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Like a Hole in the Head — part 3

  John Bidwell was proud of what he called his “self-possession.” He prided himself on keeping calm and cool during a crisis. Decades after the wreck of the steamboat Belle he recollected the incident as an example of this trait. … Continue reading

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Like a Hole in the Head — part 2

Luckily for Major Bidwell, the Sacramento Daily Union¬†was in error. After the explsion of the steamboat Belle, John Bidwell was taken back to Sacramento and to a doctor.¬† Evidently (if the newspaper notice can be trusted that far) he eventually … Continue reading

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Like a Hole in the Head

  Have you ever seen a photograph of John Bidwell that so clearly showed him with a hole in his head? This photograph, taken at the Mathew Brady studio in Washington, D.C. in 1865, shows the injury he suffered in … Continue reading

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Oh, the Places You’ll Go!

Planning a trip 140 years ago? The Chico Weekly Enterprise for August 29, 1879 gives you these options: The train schedule is pretty decent, better than it is now, and look at all the places you could get to by … Continue reading

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