First Twelve Issues of Hutchings's Cornerstone California Promotional Magazine
Featuring articles published from June 1856 to July 1857, this book collates stories written to "picture California and California life." Hutchings published his magazine to cater to residents of the state, for whom he felt that the then-prevalent Pioneer was too literary for frontier families. As such, his tales focus on outdoor escapades, primarily centered in and around the Sierra Nevada Mountains of eastern California.
Hutchings here consolidates the first year's issues of his monthly magazine into a separately published volume. Each issue features a series of articles, including illustrations, as well as letters to the editor and other magazine paraphernalia. The book includes an index and title page at the front.
Articles in the volume contain abundant information regarding the life and scenes of California in the era immediately following the Gold Rush. While many of detail stories of traveling in the Sierras (including the opening article which tells of a trip into the Yo-Ham-I-Te Valey), others describe more mundane aspects of life, such as how someone would go about minting a coin in San Francisco. As stated in the introduction, the goal of the volume is to publish "whatever is noble, manly, useful, intellectual, amusing and refining."
The Englishman James Hutchings arrived in California during the gold rush. While he failed to find large quantities of the ore, he gained enough to invest in starting a small printing business. The discovery of the Yosemite Valley by the Mariposa Battalion in 1852 inspired him to start publishing a frontier magazine. In 1855, he would hire guides to take him into the Valley, from which he drew inspiration for many of his articles. He would publish five volumes of his Illustrated California Magazine from 1855 to 1861.
An interesting early California work.