A history of California from first explorers to the last Indian in the words of those who lived and experienced and often made it. The authors have aimed at a representative selection, also to provide access to material not easily available. Within their range: the mythical Queen Calafia, the Indian experience before the Spanish, Mexican and American settlement, but not the twentieth century beyond the earthquake and fire of 1906, the death of Ishi in 1911. Explorers, corsairs, missionaries, settlers, miners and trappers, railroad men and politicos and soldiers; Spaniards, Mexicans, Americans, Russians, British have a part in the sequence. Their words, from (supposedly) Francis Drake on exploration, Colonel Fremont on the conquest of California, to literary men like Richard Dana and Charles Nordhoff, down to the otherwise obscure--a down-and-out miner, soldier in the Civil War, comprise an eye-witness to the California story. A sound research Job, straight-on presentation.