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Posted on March 17 at 7:08 p.m.
Thanks for the references LaFleur. I do not live in SB, so do not know all the resources you have available. Cheers!
On How Irish Immigrants Saved Santa Barbara
Posted on March 17 at 2:44 p.m.
It is a great article overall. Please read the book, "Swinging the Censer". (Tompkins makes reference to this book in his writings) which contains the memoirs of Nicholas' eldest daughter Catarina (Katherine) Den Bell. Hard to find, as it was a limited printing for family. It is a beautifully descriptive first hand account of the culture as well as a tumultuous time in California History. According to Catarina, Nicholas Den did graduate from medical school, contrary to what historians have to say. As written in the preface of the book, "Mrs. Bell was recognized as an authority on the early history of Santa Barbara County and its early-day families," commented the Santa Barbara Daily News, on the day of her death. Her writings were published in the Santa Barbara Morning Press. Nicholas was a good man who employed Chumash who lived on Dos Pueblos land in order to harbor them from being slaughtered or forced into the Mission system, according to Oral History. Chumash during that time period (the fortunate ones) had to assimilate into Mexican culture and find work on the Rancherias to survive. When Santa Barbara became US territory, the US government was paying anyone willing to slaughter Native Americans by the head. Needless to say, it was a dark time in California history. Nicholas was but one bright light who made a difference where he could. Happy St. Patrick's Day!
Posted on March 11 at 1:20 a.m.
Nicholas Den arrived in Santa Barbara in 1832. He left Dublin after graduating from medical school, looking for a new start. Nicholas met Daniel Hill, who was a Ranchero at the time and fell in love with the land and people and wanted to become a Ranchero himself. In order to obtain a land grant, Nicholas had to assimilate into the Mexican culture. Only after he learned to speak Spanish could he become a Mexican citizen and was granted Rancho Dos Pueblos. The land that was granted to him was home to the Indigenous Natives, Barbareno Chumash, hence the name which means the two villages which were located on the property. Nicholas made an agreement with the natives, they could live on the land as they had been if they agreed to help him on the ranch for a decent wage, in turn he would extend his hand to the Chumash if they needed medical help for free. Den died of pneumonia after returning home from helping a Chumash women who had given birth on a stormy night. For those who wish to write about history, please do your due diligence and research the facts before publishing your words! Rancho Dos Pueblos belongs to the Indigenous people, the Barbareno Chumash!
On Whose Gaviota Is It?