Sea Journal of the Barque San Francisco, 1849

In 1849, the Barque San Francisco sailed from Beverly, MA to San Francisco. The excerpts from this log describe some of the journey and the arrival.



From Beverly – to San Francisco in the Barque San Francisco – commanded by Capt. Thomas Remmonds.
Begun August 15 – 1849 and terminated January 11th – 1850

Joshua Carrico

Salem, Massachusetts


Barque San Francisco from Beverly towards San Francisco


August 15, 1849

At 8 1/2 o’clock, having taken a pilot on board, [l???ed] the fore top sail [die?], and east off the stearn fasts, set sail for the gold regions.

Fine [breeze].
9 1/4 Passed Bakers island.
9 1/2 Pilot left us,
Past sights of Cape Cod light.
Almost calm.

Fine [breeze].

Divided the company in watchers 10 in a watch, my first watch below, went down and turned in : east realize that we have started.

Thursday, August 16

My watch on deck, fine [breeze].
nothing too do but to lay on the boat and think of the girls.
Went below and had a fine nap.
Strong [breeze] and heavy swell; ship rolls very bad.

Feel a little seasick but not enough to vomit; could eat no breakfast.

Made out to eat a little [dinner?], had swampseed soup and beef. Very moderate [breeze].

Feel a great deal better.

Very smooth.

Thursday, Nov 29, 1849

Good [breeze] with passing clouds.

This is Thanksgiving day. I should to commence on a half a dozen of mince pies for breakfast. We had fried pork and boiled potatoes.

A. [Sareum] shot a Booby. I had roast pork, potatoes, stewed apple and plum duff for dinner.

Called all hands and J.B. gave them a short but first are [address].
I had cold pork stewed apple, potatoes and duff warmed over.
Moderate [breeze] with passing clouds.

Friday, Nov 30, 1849.

Good [breeze] width pleasant weather.
Shifted over the fore top mast [studring?] sail and [rinbent?] the [spencer?] and set it for a lower [studring?] sail.

Carpenters are at work making [buckets].

Good [breeze] width pleasant weather.

Today have been at work setting up the top mast [rigging].

…cheap, but 25 cents a glass by retail. Rum you can hardly give away. They say there is still a plenty of Gold to be dug yet, they average about an ounce a day apiece safe to the mines. It is the wet season now and its is said to be very difficult to go safe to the mines now on account of the water, but for all that there are many arriving from and going to the mines every day. There are many people here that live in tents, and the sleeping on the ground together with dissipation brings on much sickness, but the opinion is that if you take care of yourself there is no danger.

Sunday, June 13th

Today is the 22nd Sunday from home, and the weather has been fine. I went ashore this morning and found that the stories were all too true that were told yesterday. It is the dirtiest place that I ever saw, the mud is [horse?] deep, every thing is thrown into the streets and there suffered to remain, even the [carcasses] of dead horses and mules. I went into about a dozen of the gambling houses, they are fitted up in fine [style] with music in most of them : there are generally 4 or 5 tables in each room with a plenty Silver, Gold, Gold dust and Bars. I have seen more money on one of the tables than I ever saw in my life.

They have such a strict law here that property is considered perfectly safe to leave it anywhere. he law his for stealing &c. in slight cases to cut off the left Ear, but for harder cases they hang them; there were [11 hund?] the day before we got in ; they have this one law…


Sea Journal, Barque San Francisco (1849-1850). The Beverly Historical Society, Beverly, MA. *

*now Historic Beverly