“Dear Charlie” — Horace Goes Home

Boston, June 19, 1855

Dear Charlie:

As you have been informed, Snow has arrived in America.  . .  I landed in New York the 6th day of June and from that time to this I haven’t seen a moment’s leisure time . . . How I came to return so suddenly, and thousands of other little things, I must omit until I see you  . . .

md1260381293After twenty-one months mining in California, Horace came home to “America.” as he called the eastern United States. Why he came home “suddenly” isn’t known. Maybe he was getting homesick for the comforts of home, in spite of his success as a gold miner.

A few months later he wrote another letter to Charlie (who was in New Hampshire) telling him he had changed his plans to return to California and was still in Boston.

But return to California he did, eventually. Though not until after the Civil War.

According to the “Civil War Veterans Project” of the Orange County California Genealogical Society, Horace Snow “enlisted 10 February 1862 at Dubuque, Iowa in Company H, 13th Infantry, mustered out 31 August 1864. Commissioned 7 September 1864 in Company D, U.S. Colored Troops 45th Infantry, Mustering Officer at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, mustered out 4 November 1865.” It would be interesting to know about his experiences as an officer with a colored troop, but I don’t have any information about that.

After the war he married Margaret (Maggie) Fox Butcher and took his bride back to California. His brother Hiram was still here. Horace and Maggie had five children, all of them born in California. After a few years in Solano County and Powellton, Butte County (he is on the 1872 Butte County Great Register of Voters), he settled in Eureka, Humboldt County.

He was a dry goods merchant, in business with his brother Hiram, as Snow & Co.

8722415_117407309048In later years he moved to Southern California, and lived in Tustin, Orange County, where he died in 1895.

For more information about Horace Snow, check out the complete record at the OCCGS Civil War Veterans Project.

About nancyleek

Nancy is a retired librarian who lives in Chico, California. She is the author of John Bidwell: The Adventurous Life of a California Pioneer.
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