China Houses In Belmont?

To be snubbed and harassed by some members of the Belmont Historical Society, has moved them to THE TOP of my Angst List, with the discovery of articles on pre-fab homes. Cynthia Karpa McCarthy claims Cipriani dismantled his home in Italy and shipped it to Belmont. Absurd. He was in financial straights and the cost would be prohibitive – and he would devalue his property. Cynthia, and another historian, did not like me making out-of-Belmont links to my families businesses – after they discuss our family stagecoach line going to Half Moon Bay. The California Barrel Company was ten miles away.

I found out yesterday the Fremonts lived in a pre-fab house shipped from China. Cynthia did not like that I was kin to John Fremont, a co-founder of the Republican Party. Outrageous! Henry Meiggs shipped timber from Boston to San Francisco, and was a investor in United Fruit. Frank Buck owned all the timber around Springfield Oregon. China is threatening to destroy America’s Capitalist Hegemony – all over the world – and they can do it! Only I have been – on the ball and alert! I am oppressed and silenced, my history kept from me – and distorted! The Fremonts sued to get their Black Point property back.

For over fifteen years I have made the BHS aware of the real possibility that Sharon’s home, and others, could be pre-fabs. They had to be aware of my family ties – and deliberately ignored me. How about my copyright? There needs to be tests of the wood and ex-rays done to see if screws were used.

John Presco

China Houses: Chinese Prefabricated Structures in the California Gold Rush – Calaveras Heritage Council (calaverashistory.org)

Meet Snitty Cynthia Karpa McCarthy | Rosamond Press

The Jealous Historical Society | Rosamond Press

In 1851 he brought to Belmont a prefabricated house in 1,200 parts,
to be fastened together with 700 hooks and 26,000 screws
. He invested
in local realestate but lacked the Midas touch. The Count sold his
prefab house and sailed back east to organize a wagon train to move
overland to the Pacific. In 1853 the Count left Missouri with 11
wagons, 24 hired hands, 500 cattle, 600 cattle, 60 horses, and 40
mules. He wrote an account of this six-month journey that became the
book ‘The California and Overland Diaries of Count Leonetto Cipriani’
by Ernest Falbo.

“The Fish House was built in 1868 by Edward Nye Fish, an enthusiastic and enterprising man who had made his name and fortune in California before coming to Tucson. Originally a Massachusetts native, Fish and twenty of his friends sailed a boat from New Bedford, Massachusetts to San Francisco, California, arriving in December of 1849. At the time San Francisco was suffering a tremendous housing shortage and Fish and his men came prepared with a ship full of frame houses cut and ready to assemble. By the time he came to Tucson in 1865, Fish was a wealthy man and had a wife and daughter. He built a house for them on what is now the southwest corner of the Historic Block.”

Edward Nye Fish House – Tucson Museum of Art

Jessie Benton Fremont at Blackpoint – FoundSF

Minor Cooper Keith – Wikipedia

Henry Meiggs – Wikipedia

The Fremonts at Black Point | Rosamond Press

When gold was discovered in California in 1848 it was an undeveloped region without the infrastructure to feed, clothe, supply or house the thousands of people who were arriving daily. Many of the gold seekers and most of the supplies came through the new city of San Francisco, which at that time was a city of tents. Entrepreneurs saw that the need for housing could be met with prefabricated houses from China. During the first few years of the gold rush between 75 and 100 of these Chinese houses were brought to California. Measuring 12 feet by 24 feet or 13 feet by 26 feet and made of camphor wood, they were composed of panels that interlocked without the use of nails. Individual houses could be combined to produce buildings of varying lengths. Most of these houses appear to have been erected in San Francisco. “Their [the Chinese] dwellings, some of which are brought in frames direct from China, and erected by themselves, are small and incommodious, though extraordinary numbers somehow contrive to creep into them, and live very comfortably” (1). Taylor (2) (p85) noted in the fall of 1849 that “at least seventy-five houses had been imported from Canton, and put up by Chinese carpenters.” A few weeks later Taylor (3) (p153) again commented: “On my way to call on Colonel Fremont, whom I found located with his family in Happy Valley [at that time a suburb of San Francisco], I saw a company of Chinese carpenters putting up the frame of a Canton-made house.” It turned out that Fremont also “…was residing at the time…in a Chinese house…” (4) (p155). The ship ‘Frolic,’ which was wrecked on the Mendocino coast on July 25, 1850, carried one of these Chinese houses (5) (p178-186). The Sacramento Placer Times, on August 11, 1849, carried an advertisement for an auction of four China houses (6) (p184).

Lumber[edit]

Meiggs came to New York City in 1835 and began a lumber business that was ruined by the Panic of 1837. He restarted his business in Brooklyn, but again met with failure. Finding success in sending lumber to the Pacific Coast, he relocated to San Francisco during the peak of the California Gold Rush on the cargo ship, Albany, laden with lumber, which he sold there for 20 times its cost. He established his first sawmill in Mendocino County, California, which became the Mendocino Lumber Company.[2]

“In the process of building the East Battery, the house belonging to General Fremont was razed. Four other homes were retained as officer’s quarters and three remain in use on the Site today, although they have been heavily modified, or in one case, moved (i.e., Building 2 was moved to its present location during the construction of Building 1).
During the 1860s and 1870s, the U.S. Army Quartermaster Corps built barracks, additional officer and noncommissioned officer quarters, and support buildings. Many of these buildings remain and are still in use today.
With the conclusion of the Civil War, many of the parties who were evicted from their homes in 1863 began filing suits against the Government. Most of these plaintiffs gave up, especially when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled against one of the petitioners in 1867. By ruling in favor of the Government in the case of Grisar v. McDowell, the U.S. Supreme Court confirmed the Government’s title to the land based on the two Presidential Orders issued by President Fillmore.
Despite this ruling, the descendents of John C. Fremont continued to seek compensation for their loss through legislative means and the courts. The last attempt came in 1969 when the Fremont family filed suit against the Secretary of Defense and the Administrator of the General Services Administration. The case was dismissed later that same year.

Real estate[edit]

Meiggs Warf

When Meiggs arrived in San Francisco in 1849, he, like many others, got into real estate speculation. In Meiggs’ case, he promoted the possibility of piers along the north shore area, on the grounds that it was closer to the Golden Gate than the usual harbor, located just south of Broadway Street on the shore of what is today downtown San Francisco. Today, the site of Meiggs’ Wharf, in its day a marvel extending two thousand feet into the Bay, is occupied by part of Fisherman’s WharfPier 39, and Pier 45.[3] To that end, he built warehouses, streets and piers in the area, and constructed sawmills and schooners.

Meiggs became extended financially in trying to do this. In order to make ends meet, he illicitly obtained a book full of warrants on the Street Fund (which had little money in it), which the city’s controller and mayor had fallen into the habit of signing by the book in advance. Meiggs forged the remaining information and raised money.

Railroads[edit]

Punishment of peons employed by railroad tycoon Henry Meiggs in Chile or Peru, 1862

Before his fraud was discovered, Meiggs left San Francisco on October 6, 1854, in the brig American, heading for South America. According to him, he landed with only $8,000 (his fraud raised, by some accounts, half a million), lost it immediately, and had to pawn his watch.[4]

Meiggs became a successful railroad builder, building the second railroad in Chile, between Santiago and Valparaíso. After building himself a mansion in Chile with his immense fortunes, he moved his career on to Peru in the mid-1860s.[5] He built a railroad from Lima – the capital city – to the Altiplano, which has an altitude of 14,000 feet.[6] He built many railroads in Peru, and died in 1877 in Lima, Peru while constructing a railroad in Costa Rica which was completed by his nephew, Minor C. Keith. He is said to have been the virtual dictator of Peru by that time, known as “Don Enrique,” with interests ranging from silver mines to cleaning up the city of Lima by building a seven-mile-long park.[7]

In 1876–1877, he financed French adventurer Théodore Ber for an archaeological expedition to Tiwanaku, Bolivia, against the promise that Ber would donate the artifacts he found, on behalf of Meiggs, to Washington’s Smithsonian Institution and the American Museum of Natural History in New York.[8]

While his Peruvian contracts were wildly profitable, by 1876, his financial situation had begun to disintegrate. He found it more difficult to obtain credit. His 1877 death only worsened the economic chaos in Peru. He was buried at Cementerio Presbítero Matías Maestro in downtown Lima.

Legacy[edit]

Meiggs is said to have paid back every cent he obtained by the warrant fraud, and his other debts, amounting to as much as a million dollars, refusing only to pay back speculators who obtained the warrants at deep discounts. In preparation for his never-to-occur return to San Francisco, he got the State Legislature to pass a bill making it illegal to try him for offenses occurring before 1855. The bill was vetoed by the governor.

As a result of Meiggs’ adventures and escapades in Latin America, he left the economies of many countries in desperate conditions. Meiggs allowed for the economic systems of Chile and Peru to be ruled by exports to European nations, which weakened their abilities to develop their domestic trade systems. However, his endeavors to make money for himself proved futile, for the majority of his money was sent out of the country.[9]

In 1977, one hundred years after Meiggs’ death, Judge Harry W. Low of the California Superior Court, in San Francisco, granted a motion to quash the indictment against Meiggs stemming from the fraud, on the grounds that Meiggs had rehabilitated himself, and had gone to a Higher Court. This marked the conclusion of a lengthy campaign by Meiggs’ supporters to clear him.

An EC2 type Liberty Ship would also carry his name. The USS Henry Meiggs, hull 2788 was launched on April 17, 1944. She was scrapped in 1971.

Meiggs is credited with founding the town of Meiggsville, later renamed Mendocino.

Count Cipriani and Napoleon

Posted on April 10, 2021 by Royal Rosamond Press

The daughter of Lenonetto, Lisi Cecilla Cipriani, appears to have been employed as a spy. Her great uncle had many conversations with the Napoleon family who made plans to invade California from Mexico. My kin, John Fremont, with the help of the Jessie Scouts, thwarted this plan. This is as close to much of European History as any territory that comprises the United States, as you can get. It has sat over there in the city of Belmont, in a captured state, that is resisted being shared with the rest of the Bay Area, and California!

Yesterday I purchased my THIRTY-FOUR year sober AA coin on Amazon. I bought an Angel Coin for Cristine, and put it in William Stuttmeister niche on our family tomb, where rest his bones. The 91 earthquake opened a crack. With Lisi’s treatise on The Romance of the Rose and the poetry of Dante, alas we have the touchstone and branding my grandfather, Royal Rosamond, worked hard at. Lisi mentions the play Troylus which was one of Shakespeare’s problem plays. I mentioned Belmont having a Shakespeare theatre. Rena as Helen may now be Rena as Cressida.

John Presco

Troilus and Cressida – Wikipedia

Studies in the Influence of the Romance of the Rose upon Chaucer (jstor.org)

Cipriani of Roman Times | Rosamond Press

In 1851 he brought to Belmont a prefabricated house in 1,200 parts,
to be fastened together with 700 hooks and 26,000 screws. He invested
in local realestate but lacked the Midas touch. The Count sold his
prefab house and sailed back east to organize a wagon train to move
overland to the Pacific. In 1853 the Count left Missouri with 11
wagons, 24 hired hands, 500 cattle, 600 cattle, 60 horses, and 40
mules. He wrote an account of this six-month journey that became the
book ‘The California and Overland Diaries of Count Leonetto Cipriani’
by Ernest Falbo.

Belmond Hotel Cipriani – Wikipedia

Count Cipriani was born in Centuri Corsica, on October 10,
1812. On his father’s side he is descended from an old Florentine
family of Ghibellines, which after a long struggle with the vitorious
Guelfs, found refuge in Corsica in the fifteenth century. On his
mother’s side he is descended from Saint Francis Caracciolo of
Naples, and thus Saint Aquinas. This struggle inspired Shakespear to
write ‘Romeo and Juliet’ and thus the question “What is in a name?”
came to be.

“Returning to Paris in October, 1855, he was warmly received
by his friend Prince Napoleon who overwhelmed him with questions
about his travels in America. “I answered them the best I could.”
Cipriani wrote, “But , it is a veritable deluge….We keep talking
about my journeys, of the Sanora, of conquering it.” Perhaps he
thought of seizing it for France and hoped the prince might persuade
his cousin the Emperor to finance the undertaking. “It is an idea in
the air,” he added, “that I would willingly undertake, if necessary
capital and men were available.”

To another member of the imperial household, Jerome
Bonaparte, ex-king of Westphalia, Cipriani revealed tha the had
considerable investments in California and hinted at receiving
interest of twelve to fifteen percent a month on his money. He also
boasted of his house in Belmont which “out there is considered
magnificent.”

On behalf of the Emperor Napoleon 3, he visited King Victor
Emanuel of Sardinia to explore the possibilities of a matrimonial
arrangement between the ruling houses as a prelude to a political-
military alliance between France and Sardinia. The conversation
eventually turned to Cipriani’s overland journey of 1853, which
apparently had not escaped the king’s notice. “I have heard tell,” he
said, “of a great journey of yours, with you on horseback and camping
out.”

“For eight solid months, Your Majesty,” Cipriani replied,
making certain to include the time he left San Francisco in February
to October, 1853.
“But it is true.” the king continued, “that you led covered
wagons and crossed the Rocky Mountains where there was roads, and
great rivers without any bridges.”

The above is from the ‘California and Overland Diaries of
Count Leonetto Cipriani’. a journey that may constitute the first
cattle drive. What this diary reveals is France’s plan to conquer
Mexico, and perhaps the Western United States.

Sardinian Kingdom Founds SF Colony

Posted on April 27, 2016 by Royal Rosamond Press

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scan0012

Not only have I found Sleeping Beauty Rosa, I have found her Kingdom in San Francisco!

After Victor Emmanuel became King of Sardinia he appointed Cipriani to be his first consul in San Francisco.”

Cipriani’s home was brought around the Cape by my kindred, Carl Janke, whose daughter married William Stuttmeister. I believe my kindred were chosen to help found the Sardinian Colony that would support Victor Emmanuel’s kingdom. This is astonishing!  With the history of John Fremont and his wife, Jessie Benton, my kindred are the Acme of California History.

Many historians have wondered why the Italian Mafia was not present in California (with the exception of Big Bone Remmer)  It appears the Sardinians own the franchise. Now I understand why, and how, my father, Victor William Presco, was a “made man”. The Stuttmeisters may be Italian-Germans. Here is William Stuttmeister and Cipriani.

Booth-Kelly Lumber Company In Springfield

Posted on June 26, 2017 by Royal Rosamond Press

The Story of Rosamond

by

Jon Presco

Copyright 2017

“Hi Dan. Ten years ago we talked in your office about the white equestrian statue outside your office. According the ongoing Kesey Square Myth, this horseman may come alive in the night, and drag Kesey statue over to Springfield – with your assistance. Is this true?”

I have known Dan Egan since I moved to Springfield eleven years ago. Recently, we discussed his prophecy that Springfield would soon own the statue of Ken now located in Eugene. Or, did Neil Laudati tell me this? There is a Trojan Horse, here? I have found the hidden Mr. Burns. In theory, I own the history of Springfield. Helen is my friend. I have talked about running for Mayor. I will beautify this lumber town. I own the real story of a lone poor man taking on the powerful and rich man with a bevy of attorneys, who depicted my famous sister as a deranged and dangerous lunatic, thus her legacy had to taken over by sane outsiders!

“Mr. Buck is a prominent Mason, a Knight Templar and Odd Fellow, and a member of various clubs, including the Bohemian, of San Francisco; the Pacific-Union of the same city, the San Francisco Gold and Country Club, the Claremont Country Club, of Oakland, California, and the Sutter Club, of Sacramento, California.”

From Frank would come the largest family trust on earth that is worth a billion dollars. Because there was alcoholism in the family, it was founded to combat this disease, and help the poor people of Marin. Maybe we can get Springfield in on this action, because Buck bucks, built this town – and Beverly Hills!

After my friend, Mark Gall, paid for my membership in the Emerald Art Association, I talked with Dan in his office at the old Springfield train station. He gave me his last copy of the history of Springfield which I donated to a merchants organization on Main street, that is now defunct. Then, came the rejection of the history I was compiling on the Fremont-Benton family by the founders of Emerald Arts, who I was told by the director were the widows of the men who owned logging companies. Were any of them kin to Frank Buck, the President of the Booth-Kelly Lumber Company that built a huge lumber mill in Springfield, and, was based in Eugene. Frank was the major stock holder. Why haven’t we heard of him. Where is his monument and plaque. He is the real Mr. Burns!

“Mr. Buck is interested as a stockholder and Director in the Rodeo Land & Water Co., of Los Angeles, which owns 3100 acres of land near Los Angeles. The townsite of Beverly stands on part of this land. Mr. Buck is President of the Booth-Kelly Lumber Company, of Eugene, Oregon, and has heavy timber holdings in that section of the Northwest. He also is a Director of the Bakersfield Iron Works.”

About Royal Rosamond Press

I am an artist, a writer, and a theologian.
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