Infamous King of the Comstock
William Sharon And The Gilded Age In The West
Publication Year: 2009
Published by: University of Nevada Press
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I amount of assistance in developing this book,which is reflected in the fact that the first draft of the manuscript was overeight hundred pages long. A considerable debt is owed both to thosewho helped me accumulate that amount of information and to those whohelped me reduce it to publishable size. I was assisted in innumerable...
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O A , , W C R swam out intoSan Francisco Bay and drowned. Earlier that day the Bank of California’sboard of directors had asked Ralston to resign his position as president.Because of his reckless speculations, the once invincible bank had failed.Fortunes, large and small, were lost. But his heroic stature was too firmly...
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W S Smithfield, Ohio, on January , ,his ancestors having helped settle William Penn’s Philadelphia at the endof the seventeenth century. The family tree included a lieutenant whoserved in the New Jersey campaign in , a Presbyterian minister, and astate legislator. South Carolina senator John Calhoun was a distant rela-...
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E , mines in the Nevada boomtown of Aurora dried up, andits stocks crashed on the San Francisco Exchange. In Virginia City fourhundred wildcat mining companies, most of which had been formed theprevious year, were proving unsuccessful and being deserted. Flooding atthe lower levels of the developed mines often stopped work. Ore bodies...
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I H S amplified the doctrine of his friend CharlesDarwin by discussing the law of evolution and introducing the phrase“survival of the fittest.” In the s at Yale University, William GrahamSumner began applying Spencer’s postulations and theories to the socialorder, teaching that social progress depended on survival of the fittest....
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T was assessments. When they deemedit necessary, mine trustees posted an amount per share levied upon capitalstock, payable immediately. A month later, unpaid assessments would bedeemed delinquent and advertised for sale at a public auction to be heldone month after the advertisement. Comstock papers filled columns with...
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L at Glenbrook Creek, about a milefrom Lake Tahoe, the Glenbrook House was organized as a club for BankRing members and other Comstock magnates. Sharon and Charles Bon-ner started it in ; when they later sold it, it became the GlenbrookHotel. All night poker games were common when the Comstock magnates...
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A the Sutro hearings were being held in Washington,D.C., Sharon let it be known that he was a candidate for Nevada’s U.S.Senate seat. He and Ralston had first considered such a move two yearsOn March , , the Territorial Enterprise reported that althoughthe Enterprise’s “unknown candidate” was still in the field, Sharon was to...
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E debunked American laissez faireas myth. Jefferson’s colonial Virginia philosophy proposed a wise, frugalgovernment that, while preventing men from injuring one another, leftthem free to regulate their own pursuit of industry. He advocated keepingeconomic affairs free from government regulations in part to protect Con-...
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I S’ , still a bank director in Smithfield, Ohio, diedat age eighty-three. After Clara’s wedding Sharon’s wife Maria took toher bed. She was forty-two, suffering from stomach cancer. Living as aninvalid for several years, she suffered her illness patiently and died on May, . Sharon, continually at her bedside toward the end, was with her...
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B on the Comstock closed their doors alongwith the mother bank, D. O. Mills sent word to H. M. Yerington to open aVirginia & Truckee Railroad account with Wells Fargo. A week later, therailroad announced: “The affairs of the Virginia and Truckee Railroad arein no way embarrassed by the suspension of the Bank of California and...
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T subscription to save the Bank ofCalifornia was . million, and by September , , nearly the entireamount had been collected. Capital assessments were also being paid.1Saturday, October , , was to be the grand opening of the seven-story, eight-hundred-room Palace Hotel. Sharon ensured that it would be...
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O D , , the First Session of the Forty-fourth UnitedStates Congress was gaveled to order. The new senator from Nevada, Wil-liam Sharon, immersed in bank and Ralston estate business, was not inattendance. Two months later, on February , the Territorial Enterpriseannounced Sharon’s imminent arrival in Virginia City from San Fran-...
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W S’ San Francisco had changed dramatically by thes. Tumultuous at the time of his arrival in , it now was a uniquecosmopolitan milieu, equal parts pomp, decorum, and bustle. The town’sdisordered plank buildings and brick two-stories had given way to busi-ness blocks of three- and four-story ornate structures. Theaters, restau-...
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T every day of what would be a verylengthy trial. Thirty-three-year-old Jeremiah F. Sullivan presided. Theattorneys would call witnesses, many of whom were either rumor-mongers or perjurers. The plaintiff and four lawyers sat at the center table.Sharon, when his health did not keep him away, occupied a seat at a side...
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O J , during the trial’s continuation, the Republican Party met inChicago to nominate its presidential candidate. Sharon traveled there, ar-riving on the morning of Saturday the th. On June the Chicago Heraldreported on a party the ex-senator hosted at the Palmer House. Sharon satswinging his legs on the side of a bed, dressed in shirtsleeves, smoking a...
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I O , Judge Lorenzo Sawyer of the U.S. Circuit Court ruledon a plea for dismissal of the Sharon-initiated federal case. Sawyer wasa protégé of Stephen Field, called in at least one instance his “toady.”1Months earlier, Sawyer had decided that the case came under federal ju-risdiction. The new argument involved two points: the suit in state court...
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O William Sharon in the San Francisco newspapers werelong and detailed, outlining his life and achievements. They also de-scribed his last day, commenting on his stoic endurance, and mentionedthe torment of the divorce trial. The Chronicle reviewed the protractedlitigation, reporting Judge Sullivan’s finding of the validity of the marriage...
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Page Count: 328
Illustrations: 28 b/w photos
Publication Year: 2009
Series Title: Shepperson Series in Nevada History