Life in the Gold Country (continued)  Click image to see larger view

The Miner's Ten Commandments, letter sheet published by Sun Print, 1853, RB 48052 #102

In addition to depicting such sober matters as mining processes, many letter sheet publishers also poked fun at the way the miners lived. The best-known example, James M. Hutchings's The Miner's Ten Commandments (seen here in its original 1853 incarnation) sold thousands of copies.

"The Winter of 1849," color lithograph in Mountains and Molehills, or, Recollections of a Burnt Journal by Frank Marryat, London, 1855, RB 32560

Gold Rush towns and cities had taken shape so quickly that few communities were prepared to meet even the most basic needs of their residents. California's torrential winter rains, for example, often reduced them to impassable quagmires, as in this comic view of a San Francisco street.

Part 3: California Transformed

California 150

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