FIELD, Stephen Johnson (1816-1899)

FIELD, Stephen Johnson (1816-1899)

$1,000.00Price
Stephen Johnson Field - Personal Reminiscences of Early days in California with Other Sketches Printed for a Few Friends. Not Published

“The recollection of a brilliant early lawyer, one of the founders of Marysville, who went on to the Associate Justiceships on the Supreme Court of California, and later, on that of the United States” (Wheat: Gold Rush)
  • FIELD, Stephen Johnson (1816-1899)

     

    Personal Reminiscences of Early days in California with Other Sketches Printed for a Few Friends. Not Published

     

    “The recollection of a brilliant early lawyer, one of the founders of Marysville, who went on to the Associate Justiceships on the Supreme Court of California, and later, on that of the United States” (Wheat: Gold Rush)

     

    Field’s legal practice boomed and he was elected alcalde of Marysville, a form of mayor and justice of the peace under the old Mexican rule of law. Voters sent him to the California Assembly in 1850 to represent Yuba County but he lost a race the next year for the State Senate. Field was elected to the California Supreme Court in 1857 serving six years. During his time on the Supreme Court of California, Field had a special coat made with large pockets to hold two pistols so he could shoot various enemies through the pockets.

     

    On March 6, 1863, Abraham Lincoln appointed Field to the newly created Tenth Supreme Court seat, to achieve both regional balance (Field being a Westerner) and political balance (Field was a Democrat, albeit a Unionist one). The appointment would also give the Court a justice familiar with real estate and mining issues. Field served on the Supreme Court for thirty-four years until 1897 just two years before his death.

     

    “The future chief justice of the California Supreme Court booked passage aboard the Crescent City on November 13, 1849, in New York he headed for California via the Isthmus of Panama. He arrived in San Francisco on December 28 with only $10 in his pocket. Field related however that he brought a load of chamois with him and sold each one for an ounce of gold. After an interesting encounter with Jonathan D. Stevenson (he owed Field $400), he left January 12, 1850, for Sacramento and points beyond arriving at Nye’s Ranch, where he bought sixty-five lots in a new town called Yubaville (Marysville). Two weeks later Field was sworn into office as first alcalde of the booming town. Included in his recollections is an interesting description of Sutter. From then on his legal career blossomed, resulting in his appointment to the U. S. Supreme Court in 1863. The appendices include information about his trip from New York and his election as alcalde. (Kurutz)

     

    San Francisco: Stephen J. Field, 1880, Privately Printed, First Edition, 248 pages,  Original blue cloth 8.5 inches in height by 6 inches in width, tile on spine, minor rubbing, light wear to corners. Scarce title. Provenance: Large bold signature of noted and respected Judge, the Honorable Harry I. Thorton.

     

    Kurutz 237a., Howell 462, Wheat: Gold Rush, 76, Howes: 116

     

    Honorable Harry L. Thorton’s copy, Housed in a Beautiful Blue Cloth Clamshell 

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