Gold: Being the Marvelous History of General John Augustus Sutter

Gold: Being the Marvelous History of General John Augustus Sutter
Genre: 
Language: 
ISBN10: 
1569248079
ISBN13: 
9781569248072
Pages: 
128
Published: 
June 3rd 1996 by Da Capo Press
Rating: 
3.71

Leave it to a French poet to demythologize John Sutter, a Swiss thief and swindler who fled his native country one step ahead of the bill collectors. Sutter went first to New York, then Missouri, and finally ended up in California, where he set up a trading post and fort and, not coincidentally, something of a protection racket for other settlers. When a carpenter building a mill on Sutter's property found gold, he opened up the Swiss entrepreneur's private domain to hundreds and thousands of newcomers, a migration that changed the course of American history. Sutter died in 1880 in Washington, D.C., where he had gone to complain to Congress that his empire had been stripped away from him without due process. This is an altogether fascinating reconstruction of his strange and star-crossed life. --Gregory MacNamee

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