“Californians are a race of people; they are not merely inhabitants of a State.” O. Henry (author)

The O. Henry quote is from“California Rich” by Stephen Birmingham, originally published by Simon & Schuster (1980)

Out-of-print, available in the used  book market. Good, fun read.


Also: mirror1

From the book flap of “California Rich”

“Since the Gold Rush of 1849 California has represented The Promised Land for a special breed of Americans. In pursuit of sunshine, riches and elusive dreams they set out to make their fortunes–and often succeeded in ways they could not have expected. Prospectors became oil tycoons, squatters became cattle barons and farmer’s wives became the grande dames of a new rough-hewn society. Their tales of striking it rich have long been part of the California dream that lures people still to California’s farthest shore.

In California Rich Stephen Birmingham combines exciting social history with often hilarious anecdotes to show how the ruling class of California was born, and how it evolved a lifestyle which has gained the fascination of the world. It is filled with striking portraits of the Stanfords, the Hungtingtons, the Hearsts, the Irvines and others whose lives and fortunes made history in the Golden State….”

“Mirror of the Dream” was designed by John Beyer, who was great at his craft. John Beyer also designed the inside pages of my out-of-print book, “Half Moon Bay Memories: The Coastside’s Colorful Past (1978). The cover of “Memories” was created by well known Coastside graphic art designer Jim Rudolph.