The Journal of San Diego History
Summer 1976, Volume 22, Number 3
James E. Moss, Editor

In 1890 Charles Haskins published a list of names of 27,000 people who came to California during the gold rush — nearly all forty-niners. This list, of value to genealogists and historians, was difficult to use for it was not in alphabetical order. Libera Martina Spinazze, working under the auspices of the Society of California Pioneers, has alphabetized the list and Polyanthos Press of New Orleans published it in 1975 under the title: Libera Martina Spinazze’s Index to the Argonauts of California, By Charles Warren Haskins. 514 pages. Softbound. $15.00.

Convinced that “young people need heroes,” the Rev. Charles J. Dollen has written Messengers to the Americas: Saints and Saintly Men and Women of the Western Hemisphere (Collegeville, Minnesota: The Liturgical Press, 1975). Father Dollen, former librarian at the University of San Diego and present pastor of St. Gabriel’s Catholic Church in Poway, sketches the lives of over thirty of “God’s Messengers” in Canada, the United States, and Latin America. Included is a biography of the Franciscan missionary Luis Jayme, martyred at San Diego Mission in 1775.

For every subject there must be a guidebook. Travelers in Sonora will appreciate the authoritative and lavishly illustrated paperback guide to missions and churches of that state: Temples in the Wilderness: Spanish Churches of Northern Sonora by George B. Eckhart and James S. Griffith (Tucson: Arizona Historical Society, Monograph No. 3, 1975; 112 pages. $12.50. Softbound. $4.50). Travelers heading south from San Diego along the transpeninsular highway will want to take along A Field Guide to the Common and Interesting Plants of Baja California by Jeanette Coyle and Norman C. Roberts (La Jolla: Natural History Publishing Company, 1975; Softbound. $8.95). Carefully prepared, easy to use, and containing extraordinary color photographs of 189 plants, this book is a must for travelers in Baja California. I regret that it was not available the last time I made the journey to La Paz; I would not go again without it.

Those traveling north to the gold fields this summer might want to take along Ghost Town Glimpses by Craig MacDonald (San Francisco: Anthelion Press, 1975; 100 pages. Softbound. $2.95). This collection of facts and anecdotes discusses twenty-one towns and mining camps, including Julian in San Diego County. Craig MacDonald is a staff writer for the San Diego Union.

Still a different kind of guidebook is Robert Blair’s study of a mining camp that probably did not exist: Tales of the Superstitions: The Origins of the Lost Dutchman Legend (Tempe: Arizona Historical Foundation, 1975; 180 pages, Softbound. $4.95). Blair skillfully exposes the origins of the legend of Arizona’s famed Lost Dutchman mine and his analysis ought to be the last word on the subject. Given the persistent faith of treasure hunters, however, more books and articles seem destined to follow the torrent of literature that has already flooded this “lost” mine.

Guidebooks are available for armchair travelers, too. In recent years librarians have been especially active in preparing bibliographies relating to minority groups. One example of this genre is Native Americans of North America: A Bibliography Based on Collections in the Libraries of California State University, Northridge, by David Perkins and Norman Tanis (Northridge: 1975). The titles listed in this impressive 558-page volume are arranged under various disciplines, such as Art, Education, and History, and under subheadings of regions, states, and tribes. The bibliography ends with an author-title index. The bibliography includes books only. Readers interested in recent periodical literature should turn to Dwight L. Smith’s Indians of the United States and Canada (Santa Barbara: ABC Clio, 1974).

Still another kind of guidebook is Louis A. Brennan’s Artifacts of Prehistoric America (Harrisburg, PA: Stackpole Books. 1975; 223 pages. $14.95), which describes and/or illustrates over 500 North American stone artifacts, including such things as pendants, pipes, plummets, and projectile points. This volume will be of use to beginning archaeologists and to museum curators.

Finally, even readers of this Journal need a guidebook to help them find articles and reviews in back issues. Thomas L. Scharf and Iris Engstrand have filled that need by preparing a cumulative Index to the Journal of San Diego History and San Diego History Center Quarterly: Volumes I to XX, 1955-1974 (San Diego: San Diego History Center, 1975; 75 pages. Softbound. $7.50). The first part of this volume contains a list of all articles published over the last twenty years, while the index itself provides an invaluable guide to an extraordinary range of persons, organizations, topics, and local communities. Scharf’s and Engstrand’s painstaking and professional compilation will be appreciated by anyone working in local history and seems destined to become a starting point for researchers.