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That Which Followed After
About the time that the people of California were beginning to feel the trouble arising from the unlimited wealth and power of the great railroad corporation, they discovered what they felt was danger coming from another quarter. This was in the large number of Chinese pouring into the state. Already every town of importance had its quaint Chinese quarter, bits of Asia transplanted to the western hemisphere. Yet these sons of Asia, with their quiet, gliding motions and oriental dress, had been of great service in the development of the new land. Many of the most helpful improvements were rendered possible by their labor, and for years they were almost the only servants for house or laundry work to be obtained. Never did the housewives of the Pacific coast join in the outcry against the Chinese.
Although all this was true, it was also a fact that an American workingman could not live and support his family on the wages a Chinaman would take; and when the white man saw the Chinese given the jobs because they could work cheaply, he became discouraged and angry. Was he to be denied a living in his own country because of these strangers? For this reason the working people became very bitter toward the Chinese.
Their complaints were carried to Washington, and because of them the government finally arranged with China for the restriction of immigration, but not, however, before the matter caused much trouble in California.
During the years 1876-77 times were rightly called "hard" along the Pacific slope. Often laboring men could not get work, and their families suffered. The blame for all this was unjustly given to the Chinese, who were several times badly treated by mobs. The general discontent led at last to a demand for a new state constitution, which many people thought would remedy the evils of which they complained. For twenty-five years the old constitution had done good service. On the day it had been signed, Walter Colton, alcalde of Monterey, wrote thus of it in his diary: "It is thoroughly democratic; its basis, political and social equality, is the creed of the thousands who run the plow, wield the plane, the hammer, the trowel, the spade." Still it had its faults, the greatest of which was the power given the legislature over public moneys and lands, as well as the chance it allowed for dishonesty in voting.
Unfortunately many of the delegates to the convention which was to make the new constitution were foreigners who knew very little of American manners, customs, and laws, and few of them were among the deeper thinkers of the state, men who had had experience in lawmaking. That the new constitution is not much better than the old, many who helped in the making of it will agree. It was adopted in May, 1879. Since that time it has received a number of changes by means of amendments voted for by the people, and in spite of whatever errors it has contained, the state under it has gone forward to a high degree of prosperity.
In 1875, during the administration of Governor Pacheco, the first native state governor, an invitation was extended to native-born boys of San Francisco to take part in the Fourth of July celebration. A fine body of young men were thus assembled, of whom Hittell in his story of San Francisco says, "They were unparalleled in physical development and mental vigor, and unsurpassed in pride and enthusiasm for the land that gave them birth." This gathering led to the founding of the "Native Sons of the Golden West," an organization which now numbers many thousands and of which the great state may well be proud. Later there was organized a sister society of native daughters, and this also has a large membership. As stated in their constitution, one of the main objects of these sons and daughters of the West is "to awaken and strengthen patriotism and keep alive and glowing the sacred love of California."
An event of the utmost importance to the southern part of the state was the completion of the railroad between San Francisco and Los Angeles, which occurred in 1879. Its route lay through the rich valley of the San Joaquin. Work had been carried on from each end of the line, and it was a very happy assembly which gathered to witness the junction of the two divisions, the event taking place at the eastern end of the San Fernando tunnel. This road was afterward extended from Los Angeles eastward by the way of Yuma and Tucson, and is to-day the Southern Pacific Overland. Later the Santa Fe Company built its popular road between Los Angeles and the Eastern states. Both these companies now have lines from Los Angeles to San Diego, and the Southern Pacific has a coast road the length of the state, along which the scenery is of great beauty.
In the history of the state the most pathetic portion is that which relates to the Indians. Bancroft says, "The California valley cannot grace her annals with a single Indian war bordering upon respectability. It can boast, however, a hundred or two of as brutal butcherings on the part of our honest miners and brave pioneers as any area of equal extent in our republic." Miners and settlers coming into the country would take up the waters where the natives fished, the land where they hunted, driving them back to rocky soil, where there was nothing but acorns and roots to support life. As a result the poor, unhappy creatures, driven by hunger, would steal the newcomers' horses and cattle. It is true that the white men depended, in a great measure, upon their animals for the support of their families; but they thought only of their own wrongs, and would arm in strong parties, chase the wretched natives to their homes, and tear down their miserable villages, killing the innocent and guilty alike. The government was the most to blame, because it did not in the first place enact laws for the protection of the Indians in their rights.
About the towns, many of the natives gathered for work. In some places the authorities had the right to arrest them as vagabonds and hire them out as bondmen to the highest bidder, for a period often of as many as two or three months at a time, with no regard to family ties. Little seems to have been done to assist them to a better kind of life. In Los Angeles, when working in the vineyards as grape pickers, they were paid their wages each Saturday night, and immediately they were tempted on all sides by sellers of bad whisky and were really hurried into drunkenness. Their shrieks and howls would, for a time, make the night hideous, when they were driven by the officers of the law into corrals, like so many pigs or cattle, and left there till Monday morning, when they were handed over to whoever chose to pay the officers for the right to own them for the next week.
Near the Oregon line lived some of the most warlike and troublesome Indians of California. Here there were one or two severe fights, the worst of which was with the Modocs, in the northern lava beds. It was here that General Canby was killed. To-day the Modocs are still suffering keenly. In the upper part of the state the Indians have no lands of any kind, and noble men and women of California are working to secure for them their rights from the government. In the south, whole villages have been found living on nothing but ground acorn meal, from which miserable diet many children die and older people cannot long sustain life.
The Sequoya League, an association for the betterment of the Indians of the Southwest, has done much toward opening the eyes of the public and of the government officials to the unhappy condition of these first owners of the soil. Congress, in 1906, appropriated $100,000 to be used in buying land and water for those Indian reservations or settlements where the suffering was greatest. This was a good beginning, but as the needy Indians are scattered all over the state, much more is required before they can be so placed that they can earn a living by their labors.
Gradually the cattle industry, which was for so long a time the leading business of the country, gave way to sheep raising. During summer and fall large flocks of grayish white merinos could be seen getting a rich living on the brown grasses, the yellow stubble of old grain fields, and the tightly rolled nuts of the bur clover; while in winter and spring, hills and plains with their velvet-like covering of green alfileria offered the best and juiciest of food. This was the time of the coming of the lambs. As soon as they were old enough to be separated from their mothers they were put during the day in companies by themselves. A band of five or six hundred young lambs, playing and skipping over the young green grass they were just learning to eat, was a beautiful sight to everybody save to the man or boy who had them to herd. They led him such a chase that by the time he had them safely corralled for the night, every muscle in his body would be aching with fatigue.
Shearing time was the liveliest portion of the herder's life, which was generally very lonely. First came the shearing crew with their captain; next arrived the venders of hot coffee, tamales, tortillas, and other Mexican dainties; brush booths were erected and a brisk trade began. The herds were driven up and into a corral where several shearers could work at a time. Snip, snip, snip, went the shears hour after hour. It was the boast of a good shearer that he could clip a sheep in seven minutes and not once bring blood. As fast as cut, the wool was packed in a long sack suspended from a framework. The dust was dreadful, and the man or boy whose duty it was, when the bag was partly full, to jump in and tramp the wool down so that the bag might hold more, would nearly choke before he emerged into the clear daylight.
The passage of the no-fence law by the legislature of 1873, while it was opposed by the sheep and cattle men, was one of the greatest aids to the growth of agriculture, especially in the southern part of the state. It provided that cattle and sheep should not be allowed to run loose without a herder to keep them from trespassing. This saved the farmer from the necessity of fencing his grain fields, a most important help in a country where fence material was so scarce and expensive.
For some time after California's admission to the Union most of the events of importance in its history took place around the Bay of San Francisco and the junction of the Sacramento and San Joaquin; but early in the seventies the south land awoke from its long sleep and took part in history making, not in such stirring incidents as those of the days of '49, but in a quieter growth that was yet of importance in the making of the state. People in the East had begun to find out that southern California had a mild, healthful climate and that, though the sands of her rivers and rocks of her mountains were not of gold, still her oranges, by aid of irrigation, could be turned into a golden harvest, and that all her soil needed was water in order to yield most bountiful crops.
As little land could be bought in small ranches, those wishing to settle in the country chose the colony plan. A number of families would contribute to a common sum, with which would be purchased a large piece of land of several thousand acres with its water right. Each man received from this a number of acres in proportion to the amount of money he had invested. The first colony formed was that of Anaheim; then followed Westminster, Riverside, Pasadena, and many others, and by that time people began to come into southern California in large numbers.
The overland journey was much longer, then than now, but quite as pleasant. At twenty-two miles an hour the country could be seen and enjoyed, acquaintance made with the plump little prairie dogs of the Nebraska plains, and their neighbors the ground owls, which bobbed grave salutes as the train passed by. Bands of galloping deer, groups of grave Indian warriors sitting on their ponies watching the train from afar, an occasional buffalo lumbering along, shaking his shaggy head, were the things that interested the traveler who took the overland trains in '74 and '75.
At that time between San Francisco and Los Angeles there were two forms of travel: a hundred miles of railroad, with the rest of the distance by stage; and the steamship line. Families chose the ship. From San Pedro to Los Angeles was the only railroad of the southern country. In Los Angeles the flat-roofed adobe buildings, where people could walk about on the tops of the houses, were a wonder to the Eastern strangers. Beautiful homes some of them were, where glimpses could be had of stately senoras in silks and laces, and beautiful senoritas whose dark eyes made havoc with the hearts of the colony young men. The young Californian, who seemed a very part of his fiery steed, was at once the admiration and envy of the Yankee boy.
Queer sights were to be seen at every turn. Creaking carretas, whose squeaking wheels announced their coming a block away, filled the streets, some loaded with grapes, others with rounded shaggy grease-wood roots or sacks of the red Spanish bean and great branches of flaming red peppers. The oxen, with yoke on the horns, seemed as if out of some Bible picture.
Life in the different colonies was much the same. The newcomers had many things to learn, but they made the best of their mistakes, and days of hard work, such as many of them had never known, were often ended with social or literary meetings, where minds were brightened and hearts warmed by friendly intercourse.
When the rains were heavy, the swift mountain streams could not be crossed, and often provisions gave out; then with neighborly kindness those who had, loaned to those who had not, until fresh supplies could be obtained. To this day the smell of new redwood lumber, the scent of burning grease-wood brush, will bring back those times to the colonists with a painful longing for the happy days of their new life in the new land. Many never gained wealth, while some lost lands and savings; but it was these earnest, intelligent men and women who developed the rich valleys of the south land and to whom we are indebted for the bloom and beauty found there to-day.
The result of the land laws and the ill-treatment of the Mexican population at the mines was a period of highway robbery by bands of outlaws, each under the leadership of some especially daring man. The story of some of their adventures reminds the hearer of the tales of Robin Hood. Not so mild as Robin's were their lives, however. Often their passage was marked by a trail of blood, where bitter revenge was taken because of bitter wrongs. Last of these bands was that of Vasquez, who robbed the colony folk gently with many apologies. He was finally captured and executed, and with him the bandits passed from the page of state history.
One night in 1867 there took place in Washington an event that was to be of great importance to the western part of the United States. This was the signing of the treaty for the purchase of Alaska. As early as 1860 Mr. Seward, in a speech delivered at St. Paul, said:
"Looking far off into the northwest I see the Russian as he occupies himself establishing seaports, towns, and fortifications, on the verge of this continent, and I say, 'Go on and build up your posts all along the coast up even to the Arctic Ocean, they will yet become the outposts of my own country.'" So long ago did the desire for Alaska, or Russian America as it was then called, possess the mind of the great statesman. But it was not until seven years later that he found the chance to win the government to his views. One evening, while the matter was under discussion between the two countries, the Russian minister called upon Mr. Seward at his home, to inform him that he had just received the Czar's sanction for the sale.
"Good, we will sign the treaty to-night," said the American statesman.
"What, so late as this, and your department closed, your clerks scattered?" remonstrated the Russian.
"It can be done," replied Mr. Seward; and it was. At midnight the treaty was signed. The price paid for Alaska was less than the cost of two of our modern battleships. Every year has proved more and more the wisdom of the purchase. The discovery of gold in particular has immensely increased its value and has brought to California an enlarged commerce.
In 1898 came the war with Spain. The tidings of the 15th of February, 1898, filled the hearts of the people of California with indignation and grief. That the United States battleship Maine had been blown up in Havana harbor and numbers of our seamen killed, seemed to many sufficient cause for immediate war. Some, however, feared for the Pacific coast settlements, with insufficient fortifications and no war vessels of importance, except the magnificent Western-built battleship, Oregon. This vessel was at Puget Sound when the news of the blowing up of the Maine reached her. At the same time came orders to hurry on coal and proceed to San Francisco. There ten days were spent in taking on as much coal and provisions as the vessel could carry. Then, with orders to join the Atlantic fleet as quickly as possible, on the morning of March 19 she steamed through Golden Gate and turned southward, to begin one of the longest voyages ever made by a battleship.
The people of California were sad at heart to part with their noble vessel, and when, in April, war was declared, thousands followed the loved ship and her brave men with their interest and prayers. All alone upon the great sea she was sailing steadily onward, to meet, perhaps, a fleet of foes, or worse still, a dart from that terror of the waters, a torpedo boat; yet always watchful and always ready for whatever foe might appear, she journeyed on.
The order given by Captain Clark to his officers in case they sighted the Spanish squadron, was to turn and run away. As the Spanish ships followed they were almost sure to become separated, some sailing faster than others. The Oregon having a heavy stern battery, could do effective fighting as she sailed; and if the enemy's ships came up one at a time, there might be a chance of damaging one before the next arrived.
Through two oceans and three zones, fifteen thousand miles without mishap, the Oregon sailed in fifty-nine days. When she joined the fleet where it lay off Cuba, she came sweeping in at fifteen knots an hour, the winner of the mightiest race ever run, cheered at the finish by every man of the American squadron. All honor should be given to her wise captain and brave crew and to the Western workmen who made her so stanch and true.
On a fair May day, while California children were rejoicing over their baskets of sweet May flowers, the first battle of the war was fought, the first, and for California the most important. When Dewey destroyed the Spanish fleet on that Sunday morning (May 1, 1898) in Manila Bay, he not only won an important victory, but a greater result lay in the change of attitude of the United States toward the rest of the world.
It was a change which had begun long before; many events had led up to it, but possession of the Philippines and other islands of the Pacific forced our country to recognize the importance of Asia and the ocean which washes its shores.
Commerce has always moved westward, going from Asia to Greece, to Rome, to western Europe, to the western hemisphere; and the race which takes up the movement and carries it forward is the one which gains the profits. All must realize the truth of Mr. Seward's prophecy when he said, "The Pacific coast will be the mover in developing a commerce to which that of the Atlantic Ocean will be only a fraction." "The opportunity of the Pacific," some one has called it. Nearly two thirds of the people of the earth inhabit the lands washed by the waters of this western sea, and the country which secures their trade will become the leading nation of the world - a leadership which should be of the best kind, supplying the needs of peaceful life, building railroads, encouraging the things that help a people upward and onward. To the young men of California, Hawaii and the Philippines offer every chance for daring, energy, and invention. If to honesty and energy there be added a speaking knowledge of the Spanish language, there lie before the youth of the Pacific coast the finest opportunities for active, successful lives.
As soon as President McKinley issued his call to arms for the Spanish war, the men of California responded with a rush. A large number of those who had enlisted were hurried to San Francisco, where the military authorities were quite unprepared to furnish supplies. For a day or two there was real suffering; then the Society of the Red Cross came to the rescue, and thousands of dollars' worth of food and blankets were sent to the camp. As soon as the always generous people of San Francisco comprehended the state of affairs, there was danger that the hungry young soldiers would be ill from overfeeding.
The twenty-third day of May, 1898, is a day to be remembered in the history of our country, for on that day went out the first home regiment from the mainland of the United States, to fight a foe beyond the sea. When the twelve companies of California Volunteers marched through the city from the Presidio to the docks of the Pacific Mail and Steamship Company, two hundred thousand people accompanied them. So hard was it for our peace-loving people to understand the real meaning of war that it was not until the brave lads and earnest men were actually marching to the steamer which was to carry them thousands of miles to meet danger and death, that many quite realized the sorrowful fact. Men cheered the regiment as it passed, but the sobs of the women sometimes nearly drowned the hurrahs. Said one officer, "It was heartrending. If we had let ourselves go, we would have cried our way to the dock." But in the war the record of the California troops was one that gave new honor to their state.
Annexation of Hawaii
"The Hawaiian Islands," said Walt Whitman, in the Overland Monthly, "are not a group. They are a string of rare and precious pearls in the sapphire center of the great American seas. Some day we shall gather up the pretty string of pearls and throw it merrily about the neck of the beautiful woman who has her handsome head on the outside of the big American Dollar, and they will be called the beautiful American Islands."
In 1893 the native queen of the islands was deposed by a revolution conducted in a great measure by Americans living in Hawaii. A provisional government was formed and an application made for annexation to the United States. Through two presidential terms the matter was discussed both in Congress and by the people all over the country. Many were against extending our possessions beyond the mainland in any direction. Others thought it unfair to the natives of the islands to take their lands against their will. It seemed to be pretty well proved, however, that the native government was not for the advancement and best interests of the country, and that in a short time these kindly, gentle people would have to give up their valuable possessions to some stronger power.
Captain Mahan, writing of these conditions, said: "These islands are the key to the Pacific. For a foreign nation to hold them would mean that our Pacific ports and our Pacific commerce would be at the mercy of that nation."
In the early part of the Spanish war (July, 1898) the resolution for the annexation of the Hawaiian Islands was passed by Congress and approved by President McKinley, and the string of pearls was cast about Columbia's fair neck.
It seems strange that the first case to be tried in the peace court of the nations at the Hague should have been in regard to the Pius Fund of the Californias collected by the Jesuit padres two hundred and thirty years before, to build missions for the Indians of California. The way in which this money was obtained is described in Chapter IV of this history. It grew to be a large sum, of which the Mexican government took control, paying the interest to the Roman Catholic Church in Upper and Lower California. After the Mexican war, Mexico refused to pay its share to the Church of Upper California. The United States took up the matter, claiming that according to the treaty which closed the war, the Catholic Church of the state of California had a right to its Mexican property.
In 1868 it was agreed by the two countries to leave the matter to the decision of Sir Edward Thornton, English ambassador at Washington. He decided that Mexico should pay an amount equal to one half the interest since the war. Mexico did this, but had paid nothing during all the years which had passed since that time. To settle the dispute finally, it was decided to leave it to arbitration by the Hague court. The verdict given was that Mexico should pay the Roman Catholic Church of California $1,400,000 for the past, and one half the interest on the fund each year from February, 1903, forever.
The natural result of the nation's need in the Civil War was the overland railroad. The danger to the Oregon on its long journey, the difficulties in getting reinforcements to Admiral Dewey, and the possession of new lands in the Pacific led to decided action in regard to the building of a ship canal through the Isthmus of Panama.
For years the plan had been talked over. In General Grant's first term as President he saw so plainly our need of this water way, that he arranged a canal treaty with Colombia, and it seemed as though the work would soon begin, but the Colombian government refused to allow the matter to go on, hoping to make better terms with the United States. This was not possible then, so the plan was not carried out. Later, a French company undertook to build a canal across Panama, but after several years of work failed.
Many of the Americans favored the route through Nicaragua, but after the government had spent much money and time in considering carefully both propositions, the preference was given to the Panama route. In 1902 an act for the building of the canal was passed by Congress and approved by President Roosevelt. It provided, however, that should the President be unable to obtain a satisfactory title to the French company's work and the necessary territory from the republic of Colombia on reasonable terms and in a reasonable time, he should seek to secure the Nicaragua route. The matter was almost settled, when again Colombia's greed got the better of her judgment and she refused to ratify the compact.
When the people of the province of Panama saw that they were likely to lose their canal through the action of their government, they promptly revolted and declared themselves independent of Colombia. The United States recognized their independence, and a satisfactory treaty was at once concluded with them. In March, 1904, the commission appointed by the President for building the canal sailed for the Isthmus.
Nearly one fourth of the work had already been done by the old company, but there was yet a great deal to do. Besides the actual building of the canal, its dams and locks, the fever district had to be made healthful enough for workmen to live there, marshes had to be drained, pure water brought in from the mountains, and the fever-spreading mosquitoes killed. In addition to all this, the natives of the land and the many bands of workmen of different races had to be brought into an orderly, law-abiding condition. In less than a year it was found necessary to alter the commission, the President choosing this time men particularly noted for their energy and power to make things go. The work progressed with great rapidity, until, in August, 1914, the canal was opened to navigation.
In the latter part of the nineteenth century the eastern portion of Asia began to stir itself, rising up from the sleepy, shut-in life it had led for hundreds of years. The eyes of the world watched in wonder the progress of the war between China and Japan (1894-95). In it was fought the first battle in which modern war vessels were engaged. It was found that the Japanese, of whom so little was then known, could fight, and fight well.
As a result of the war, China ceded to Japan the territory of Manchuria and the right to protect Korea. Russia and Germany objected, however, and France agreed with them, so Japan had to give way. Soon Russia began taking possession of the disputed territories, but she had constant trouble with Japan, and early in 1904 war broke out. Before the close of the year the civilized world stood astonished not only at the wisdom, patriotism, and fighting qualities of the Japanese, but also at their humanity, which would not have discredited a Christian nation.
There took place a series of great battles, both on land and on the sea, in which the Japanese were generally victorious. The terrible loss of life and destruction of property led the President of the United States, in the spring of 1905, to urge upon the two countries that fighting cease and peace be arranged.
Few statesmen believed that Mr. Roosevelt would be successful in his humane endeavor, but he pushed his suggestion with patient perseverance until, in September, 1905, Americans had the satisfaction of witnessing upon their soil, at Portsmouth, New Hampshire, the signing of the treaty of peace between Russia and Japan.
Japan's methods of conducting the war had advanced her to a standing among nations which she had never before occupied, and all realized the wisdom of securing commercial relations with her people, who were so rapidly adopting the habits and customs of the rest of the civilized world. In this competition for her commerce, California, by her position on the western shore of the United States, has unusual advantages, a fact which was soon proved by the amount of money invested in increasing her facilities for production and manufacturing. Unfortunately little has yet been done in the matter of shipbuilding, and few vessels which enter her harbors have been built in the state.
Some Recent Events
"I'll put a girdle around the earth in forty minutes," prophesied Puck in "Midsummer Night's Dream." The boastful fairy did not succeed in accomplishing this wonder until midnight on the Fourth of July, 1903. On that day the Pacific cable from the United States to Hawaii, to Midway Island, to Guam, and to Manila, began operations. The men worked hard that last day of the cable laying, and by 11 P.M. the President of the United States sent a message to Governor Taft at Manila. Soon after was the old prophecy fulfilled, when President Roosevelt, no doubt with Puck at his elbow, sent a message round the world in twenty minutes, thus bettering Puck's idea by half.
The saddest year in California's records is that of 1906. On the morning of April 18, a great and overwhelming calamity overtook the beautiful region around San Francisco Bay. A movement of the earth's crust which began in the bottom of the ocean far out from land, reached the coast in the vicinity of Tomales Bay in Marin County. Wrecking everything that came in its direct path, it shivered its way in a southeasterly direction to a point somewhere in the northern part of Monterey County. The land on the two sides of the fault moved a short distance in opposite directions. Thus in some straight fences and roads crossing the fault, one section was found to be shifted as much as sixteen feet to one side of the other. The severe vibrations set up by this break and shifting extended a long distance in all directions.
Although the earthquake was by no means so severe in San Francisco as in the region of Tomales Bay or even in the vicinity of Stanford, Santa Rosa, San Jose, or Agnews, it caused greater loss of life and property on account of the crowded population. Many buildings were wrecked, especially those poorly constructed on land reclaimed from swampy soil or built up by filling in. People who had prophesied that, should an earthquake come, the high buildings such as those of the Call and the Chronicle would surely collapse, were astonished to see those giant structures apparently unharmed while buildings of much less height, but without the steel framework, were completely wrecked.
The earthquake was a sad calamity, but had this been the sum of the disaster the city would only have paused in its progress long enough to clear away the wreck and to sorrow with the mourners. It was the fires which sprang up while the water system was too damaged to be of use that wiped out old historical San Francisco, leaving in its place a waste of gray ashes and desolate ruins. Santa Rosa, San Jose, Stanford, Agnews, all suffered severely from the earthquake; but in few cases did fires arise to add to their loss. The State Insane Asylum at Agnews, which was built on swampy ground, was a complete wreck with large loss of life.
The marvelous bravery and cheerfulness with which the people of San Francisco bore their cruel fate gave a lesson in courage and unselfishness to humanity. The magnificent generosity with which not only the people of southern and northern California, but of the whole country, sprang to the relief of the unhappy city gave a silver lining to the black cloud of disaster.
Before the embers of their ruined homes had ceased to smoke the people began the work of rebuilding, and at the time of the visit of the Atlantic fleet of the United States navy in 1908, business had so revived as to be almost normal, and the welcome accorded the silent vessels in white by the gallant City of St. Francis was as hearty and generous as any that greeted them during their progress.
October, 1909, was marked by two events of importance to San Francisco. One was the visit of President Taft, to whom the great state of California had given all its electoral votes. The second was the celebration, at the same time, of the discovery of the bay, which occurred in the fall of 1769, the founding of the presidio and mission, which took place in the fall of 1776, and the rebuilding of the burned district. On this occasion the people of San Francisco and their guests gave themselves up to a time of merrymaking - a three days' historical carnival called, in honor of the commander of the expedition during which the great bay was discovered, the "Portola Festival."
In 1915 the Panama-Pacific International Exposition was held in San Francisco. It contained many novel and beautiful features, and was attended by vast multitudes of people. Another notable exposition was held at San Diego, beginning in 1915 and continuing in 1916.