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Full text of "The true story of "Ramona," its facts and fictions, inspiration and purpose"

. 



NG DA' 



University of California Berkeley 

THE PETER AND ROSELL HARVEY 

MEMORIAL FUND 




THE AUTHORS AND DO&A MARIANA DE CORONEL 

Carlyle Channing Davis (left) and William A. Alderson, the 
authors, listening to Dona Mariana de Coroncl reciting her asso- 
ciations with Helen Hunt Jackson and facts attending the origin 
of " Kamona." 



THE TRUE STORY OF 

" R A M O N A " 

ITS FACTS AND FICTIONS, INSPIRATION AND PURPOSE 

BY 
CARLYLE CHANNING DAVIS 

Formerly Editor "Rocky Mountain News" 
and ''Denver Times*' and Proprietor 
and Editor of Leadville "Evening 
Chronicle'* and ''Herald Democrat,' 1 

AND 

WILLIAM A. ALDERSON 

Of the Los Angeles Bar, Author of Legal 
Treatises on "Receivers" and "judicial 
Writs," and " Her e's t o You," a Book of Sentiments 



NEW YORK 
DODGE PUBLISHING COMPANY 

220 East 23d Street 



Copyright, 1914, by Doooc PUBLISHING Co. 



CREDITS 

The statements in this volume attributed to Susan 
Coolidge and Henry Sandham are from their contribu- 
tions to Little, Brown & Co.'s illustrated edition of 
" Ramona," 1900. 

" Glimpses of California and the Missions," from which 
extracts are used, was published in 1902 by Little, Brown 
& Co., and is beautifully illustrated by Mr. Henry Sand- 
ham. 



AUTHORS' STATEMENT 

i 

IN this volume is related for the first time 
the true story of Helen Hunt Jackson's 
great American novel, " Ramona." The 
facts and fictions of the romance are dis- 
tinctively designated, and its inspiration and 
purpose disclosed. 

The originals of the characters of the novel 
are identified, and their true names given. 

Innumerable fictions concerning the story 
that have gained currency, some having been 
commercialized by unscrupulous persons, are 
dispelled. 

Many thrilling and heretofore unpublished 
facts pertinent to the romance and its author 
are here recited; some surpassing in tragedy 
the facts and fictions of the novel itself. 

The illustrations have been carefully selected, 
and present scenes and persons inseparably as- 
sociated with " Ramona," many having been 
especially produced for this volume, and others 
never before having been given to the public. 

The contents of this book have been so pre- 
pared as to be interesting and intelligent to 
those who are not familiar with " Ramona," as 



> STORY OF RAMONA * 

well as to those who know the thrilling and 
pathetic California story. 

Here are recited facts which constitute a 
complete story in themselves, and are, indeed, 
more thrilling and tragic than the fiction of 
the prevailing imaginary novelist. 

Especially do we hope to create new interest 
in the greatest of American novels, " Ramona," 
and give tribute to its author, Helen Hunt 
Jackson. 

CARLYLE CHANNING DAVIS 
WILLIAM A. ALDERSON 

Los Angeles. 







TO 

THE MEMORY OF 

HELEN HUNT JACKSON 

The Most Brilliant, Impetuous 

and Thoroughly Individual Woman of 

American Literature. 



" What songs found voice upon those lips, 

What magic dwelt within the pen, 
Whose music into silence slips, 

Whose spell lives not again! 
O, sunset land! O, land of vine, 

And rose, and bay ! In silence here 
Let fall one little leaf of thine, 

With love, upon her bier." 






CONTENTS 



PAGE 

Authors' Statement xi 

A Tribute to Helen Hunt Jackson, Carlyle 

Channing Davis ...... i 



CHAPTER I 
Inspiration of " Ramona " The Coronels . . 15 

CHAPTER II 

Meeting the Coronels Bishop Mora Mrs. Jack- 
son's Affection for the Coronels ... 20 

CHAPTER III 

First Meeting with Mission Indians Preparations 
to Visit Indian Settlements Camulos Ranch 
Home of Ramona 27 

CHAPTER IV 

The Real Ramona and Other Characters Ales- 
sandro Guadalupe The Ramona Jewels Kill- 
ing of Alessandro The Alessandro-Ramona 

Romance 33 

[vii] 



>> CONTENTS * 

CHAPTER V 

PAGE 

Where " Ramona " was Written The Name " Ra- 
mona " Helping the Mission Indians Mrs. 
Jackson's Death Love of the Indians for Her . 46 



CHAPTER VI 
Don Antonio Francisco de Coronel . . -55 

CHAPTER VII 

Mrs. Jackson's Home at Colorado Springs Indian 
Environments The Utes and Other Tribes A 
Festival in Her Honor 63 

CHAPTER VIII 

Investigating the Mission Indians The Meeker 
Tragedy " Ramona " and " Uncle Tom's 
Cabin" .74 

CHAPTER IX 

Publication of Report upon the Indians An Indian 
School Mrs. Jackson's Burial Place Personal 
Interview Preparing for " Ramona " .82 

CHAPTER X 

The Coronels The " Real " Ramona and Her 
Baskets The Inspiration of " Ramona " Ca- 
mulos Ranch and Its Customs The Ramona 
Jewels 89 

[viii] 



CONTENTS 



CHAPTER XI 

PAGE 

Hon. Reginald F. del Valle The Character of 
Felipe The Mission Play Lucretia Louise del 
Valle The " Ramona " Story and the del Valle 
Family Offensive Tourists . . . .102 



CHAPTER XII 

Dona Ysabel del Valle The Mistress of Camulos 

Ranch Sefiora Moreno of " Ramona " 108 



CHAPTER XIII 
The Originals of the Characters of "Ramona" . 117 

CHAPTER XIV 

Dona Mariana de Coronel The Coronel Collec- 
tion Bishop Amat Saint Vibiana's Cathedral 
Don Antonio and General Kearney Letters 
of Mrs. Jackson to the Coronels . . .164 

CHAPTER XV 

Contributed by Dofia Mariana de Coronel Her 
Association with Mrs. Jackson . . . 185 

CHAPTER XVI 

The Home of Ramona, July, 1913, William A. 
Alderson ....... 197 

[ix] 



* > 

CHAPTER XVII 

PAGE 

Abbot Kinney, Co-Commissioner with Mrs. Jack- 
son N. H. Mitchell 215 

CHAPTER XVIII 

Henry Sandham, the Artist of " Ramona " . . 234 

CHAPTER XIX 

The Dramatization of " Ramona" Helen Hunt 

Jackson, Ina Coolbrith 256 



M 



ILLUSTRATIONS 

The illustrations are made a special feature of this 
volume. Many of the photographs from which they 
were produced were taken expressly for the authors, and 
others have never before been given to the public. The 
publication of " Ramona " excited great interest in Cali- 
fornia, and several of the old photographers in the south- 
ern part of the State soon afterward visited and photo- 
graphed many of the scenes mentioned and described 
in the story. These old plates were long since laid aside, 
and it was with great effort that they were discovered. 
As an incident to this labor, one photographer handled 
approximately four thousand plates in assisting the 
authors to select photographs for illustrating the text. 

Where it is not otherwise stated, each illustration 
shows its particular scene as it appeared at the time 
" Ramona " was written. The two beautiful pictures of 
Don Antonio and Mariana de Coronel together, in Spanish 
apparel, show this couple to be just as Mrs. Jackson 
knew and described them. The posing was done under 
the supervision of Miss Annie B. Picher, Pasadena, Cali- 
fornia, soon after the publication of " Ramona," and the 
authors are indebted to her for the use of the plates. 



INDEX TO ILLUSTRATIONS 

PAGE 

Alderson, William A. Frontispiece 

Altar Cloth, the Torn 

on the altar in Camulos Chapel 240 

showing the rent 29 
Arbor at Camulos 

as it appeared in 1883 254 

as it appeared in 1913 202 
Arcade to Chapel, Camulos 

front view 81 
side view 113 
Aunt Ri 158 
Balcony Scene, Camulos 93 
Baldwin's Ranch, bell taken from San Gabriel Mis- 
sion 224 
Bells- 
Mission at Camulos, 1913 208 
bells and priest at Camulos 51 
bells and chapel as they appeared in 1913 199 
San Gabriel bell on Baldwin's ranch 224 
" Death Bell " at Santa Barbara Mission 255 
Blanca Yndart 35 
Brook at Camulos 97 
Cahuilla Graveyard 125 
Cahuilla Ramona 49, 50, 126 
Camulos 

altar cloth, torn, on altar 240 

altar cloth, torn, showing rent 29 

balcony scene 93 
[xiii] 



* INDEX TO ILLUSTRATIONS * 

PAGE 

Camulos 

brook, the 97 
chapel, fence, cross and bells, as they ap- 
peared in 1913 199 
chapel, see title, " Chapel at Camulos " 
cross near chapel 199 
cross on north hill 199 
dogs 209 
dwelling, showing south veranda 38 
English walnut tree 213 
fence on which altar cloth was hung 199 
fountain, the 124 
grape arbor, as it appeared in 1883 2 54 
grape arbor, as it appeared in 1913 202 
graveyard 96 
guitar player on veranda 46 
inner court, as it appeared at time of Mrs. 

Jackson's visit 42 

inner court, as it appeared in 1913 203 

Mission bells, as they appeared in 1913 208 

Mission bells and priest 51 

north side of kitchen, as it appeared in 1913 209 

old winery 203 
olive mill and tank, as they appeared at time 

of Mrs. Jackson's visit 89 

olive mill and tank, as they appeared in 1913 202 

pomegranate trees, as they appeared in 1913 112 

public road 209 

raised part of south veranda 47 

Ramona's bedroom 80 

ranch and hills to the north 88 

ranch and hills to the south 92 

south side of kitchen 43 

[xiv] 



* INDEX TO ILLUSTRATIONS * 

PAGE 

Camulos 

south veranda, as it appeared in 1913 198 

south veranda 38 

veranda on inner court, as it appeared in 1913 213 

west veranda, as it appeared in 1913 208 

willows, the 39, 198 

window with woman 104 

Cannon, first in California 169 

Carriage used by Helen Hunt Jackson in Southern 

California 34 

Chapel at Camulos 

exterior view, taken in 1913 199 

arcade to, front view 81 

arcade to, side view 113 

interior of 212 

interior, showing tear in altar cloth 240 

Chart, Made on Sheep-Skin, Showing Deposit of 

Gold Plate of San Fernando Mission 121 

Church of the Angels, Los Angeles 241 

Cloth, the torn altar 29 

as it appears on the altar at Camulos 240 

Coronel 

bust of Don Antonio 16 

bust of Mariana 17 

Don Antonio and Mariana with guitar 53 

Dona Mariana as photographed in 1913 188 
Dona Mariana with the authors Frontispiece 

Don Antonio on horseback 15 

Don Antonio in his oratory 65 

Don Antonio and first cannon in California 169 

Dona Mariana in her new home 48 

Don Antonio with guitar singing to Mariana 61 

Don Antonio and Mariana 53, 168 

[XV] 



* INDEX TO ILLUSTRATIONS * 

PAGE 

Coronel 

model of San Luis Rey Mission 172 

statuary work 165 

Coronel Home 25 

Crosses 

near the chapel at Camulos 51 

on north hill, Camulos 199 

Davis, Carlyle Channing Frontispiece 

Del Valle 

family rosary 115 

Hon. Reginald F. 105 

Lucretia Louise 107 

Sefiora Dona Ysabel 106 

Dogs at Camulos 209 

El Recreo 25 

Farrar, Jim I59 l6 4 

Fathers at Santa Barbara Mission 141 

Fountain at Camulos 124 

Gaspara, Father 

in vestments 155 

his home at San Diego Mission 136 

Gateway, Garden of the Gods 73 

Grape Arbor 

as it appeared in 1913 202 
as it appeared at time of Mrs. Jackson's visit 254 

Grave of Helen Hunt Jackson 14 

Graveyard 

at Camulos 9 6 

at Cahuilla 125 

at Santa Barbara Mission 151 

Guitar of Don Antonio de Coronel 255 

Hansel's Store 152 

Home of Father Gaspara 

[XTi] 



INDEX TO ILLUSTRATIONS > 

PAGE 



Indians 

band of sheep-shearers 243 

Cahuilla Indian 49 
Chief Jose Pachito and his captains at Pala 60 

Grevoja Pa, old Temecula woman 243 

home of, at Pachanga 249 
meeting of, at Pala 28, 52 

meeting with Don Antonio de Coronel 28 

Padro Pablo and his wife at Pauma 72 
Ramona Lubo 49, 50, 126 

Ramona Lubo kneeling at grave 50 

Ramona Lubo with star basket 126 

Indian Mission School, San Diego 225 
Inner Court at Camulos 

as it appeared at time of Mrs. Jackson's visit 42 

as it appeared in 1913 203 
Jackson, Helen Hunt 

full figure 2 

bust 3 

grave of 14 

Joaquin, Father 180 

Kinney, Abbot 216 

Kitchen at Camulos 

north side, as it appeared in 1913 209 

south side 43 
Lubo, Ramona 49, 50, 126 

McGuire, Mrs. James 35 

Major Domo, Glen Eyrie 73 

Mitchell, N. H. 230 

Mora, Bishop Francisco 24 

Mrs. Jordan 158 

Office of Judge Wells 164 

[xvii] 









INDEX TO ILLUSTRATIONS * 

PAGE 



Olive Mill and Tank at Camulos 

as it appeared at time of Mrs. Jackson's visit 89 

as it appeared in 1913 202 

Pachanga Indian Abode 249 
Pachito, Chief Jose 52, 60 

Pablo, Padro, and Other Indians 72 
Pala Mission 

exterior view 153 

interior view 154 

Pomegranate Trees 112 

Rainbow Falls 64 

" Ramona " 

copy presented by Mrs. Jackson to Senora 

de Coronel 194 
inscription in copy presented by Mrs. Jack- 

son to Senora de Coronel 195 

first copy of Spanish translation of 189 

Ramona's Bedroom, Camulos 80 

Ramona Falls 64 

Ramona Lubo 

standing at her husband's grave 49 

weeping at her husband's grave 50 

with her star basket 126 

Road Behind Camulos Dwelling 209 

Roc ha, Rojerio 120 

Rosary of del Valle Family 115 

Saint Vibiana's Cathedral- 

front view 173 

interior view 177 

the altar 176 

Salvierderra, Father 133 

portrait by Henry Sandhaxn 248 

San Antonio de Pala Mission 153, 154 

[XTiii] 



INDEX TO ILLUSTRATIONS > 

PAGE 



San Buenaventura Mission 

exterior view 128 

interior view 132 

San Diego Mission 

brick walls of Father Ga span's proposed 

church 146 

chapel 249 

old Mission building 221 

Father Gaspara's home 136 

San Fernando Mission 181 

San Gabriel Mission 

priest in pulpit 180 

exterior view 217 

interior view 220 

page of old record 224 

missing bell 224 

San Juan Capistrano Mission 231 

San Luis Rey Mission 

model of 172 

general view of 235 

Sanchez, Father Francisco de Jesus 133 

Sandham, Henry 

as he appeared when in California with Mrs. 

Jackson 234 

taken a short time prior to his death 242 

Santa Barbara Mission 

corridor 147 

" Death Bell " 255 

door leading to graveyard 150 

Fathers and lay brothers 141 

Graveyard 151 

Mission building, front view 127 

Mission building, side view 129 
[*] 



* INDEX TO ILLUSTRATIONS * 

PAGE 

Santa Barbara Mission 

priests* garden 137 

view from Mission tower 140 

Seven Falls 64 

Sheep-Shearers 243 

Sheep-Skin Chart Showing Deposit of Gold Plate 

of San Fernando Mission 121 

Shepherd Dogs 209 

Statuary Work of Seiiora de Coronel 165 
Table Used by Mrs. Jackson when in Los Angeles 194 

Temple, Sam 159, 164 

Tripp, Justice of the Peace 164 

Ubach, Father Anthony 155 
Verandas at Camulos 

south, as it appeared in 1913 198 

west, as it appeared in 1913 208 

on inner court, as it appeared in 1913 203 

south 38 

raised part of south 47 

guitar player on 46 

Walnut tree 213 

Wells, Justice of the Peace 164 

Willows at Camulos 

as they appeared at time of Mrs. Jackson's 

visit 39 

as they appeared in 1913 198 

Window with Woman, Camulos 104 

Winery at Camulos 203 

Yndart, Blanca 35 

Yute Pass 73 



HELEN HUNT JACKSON 

(H. H.) 

A TRIBUTE 
CARLYLE CHANNING DAVIS 

THE life of the author of "Ramona" 
might easily have been one long, glad- 
some summer day, the opposite of what 
to the world it ever seemed to be. Her earlier 
verse, as well as prose, may have reflected the 
sadness of younger years, but her Christian 
spirit and her artistic temperament finally en- 
abled her to overcome a quite natural tendency 
to grieve over a fate none too kind, enabling her 
to enjoy to the full God's manifold blessings. 

Left an orphan at twelve, bereft of her first 
husband after a decade of perfect wedded bliss, 
her only child taken from her two years later, 
and in the last fifteen months of her own life 
an almost helpless cripple, it is scarcely less 
than marvelous that she should ever wear that 
sweetest smile, that her eyes ever again should 
twinkle with the merriment they bespoke. 

" I am astonished when I review my mercies, 



Jt STORY OF RAMONA * 

and really feel as if all must have been ar- 
ranged for my comfortable and respectable 
dying." Thus she wrote on her death-bed, 
from which also emanated some of the most 
cheerful verses ever credited to her pen. 

The personality of Helen Hunt Jackson was 
unique and fascinating. She was born and 
reared within the town of Amherst, Massachu- 
setts. Her parents were Calvinistic, possessed 
of but a narrow vision of the world and un- 
alterable standards of right and wrong; of that 
old class of religionists who commence on Satur- 
day to prepare a sour and serious mien for 
Sunday. 

Her father was Nathan Wiley Fiske, pro- 
fessor of philosophy at Amherst College. 

Helen was born with an irresistible and irre- 
pressible passion for nature. From her earli- 
est childhood she was wont to steal away to 
the silence and solitude of the woods and fields. 
She yielded to the call of the wild. She was 
adventurous and prone to exploration. Her 
sentiments were vivacious and enlivening. Her 
nature was sympathetic and pliable. She loved 
ardently, but she could hate with satanic ear- 
nestness. 

She displayed a keen sense of humor. She 
was brilliantly witty. She was an iconoclast: 

[a] 




HELEN HUNT JACKSON 
Taken in Los Angeles, 1884, a few months prior to her death. 




HELEN HUNT JACKSON 
From painting by A. F. Harmer, Los Angeles, 1883. 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

forms, ceremonies and customs were not laws 
to her. 

From her first husband she bore the name 
of Hunt. Her early nom de plume was " H. 
H." Helen Hunt. Then from her second mar- 
riage came the added name of Jackson. 

She was of the blonde type. Her eyes were 
gray. In stature she was small, gaining flesh 
in later years. 

Her personality was irresistibly charming. 
She dressed daintily and neatly. Her attire, 
like her manners, had its individuality. 

Colonel Higginson wrote of her: "To those 
who knew her best she was a person quite 
unique and utterly inexhaustible. She did not 
belong to a class, she left behind her no second, 
and neither memory nor fancy can restore her 
as she was, or fully reproduce, even for those 
who knew her best, that ardent and joyous 
personality." 

At forty-two, after a decade of widowhood, 
she was driven to Colorado for relief from 
throat trouble, and took up her residence at 
Colorado Springs "City of Eternal Sun- 
shine" destined to be her home to the end 
of her days. Colorado was good to her in 
every way. It gave to her renewed health. 
It provided a climate exactly adjusted to her 

[3] 



>. STORY OF RAMONA & 

requirements. It furnished an environment of 
mountain and plain and canon that to her was 
a perennial delight. And it gave to her a hus- 
band, in the person of William Sharpless Jack- 
son, ever congenial and worshipful, of whom 
any woman in the land might well feel proud. 
It also gave to her a home of inviting ease 
and luxury, the first real home the devoted 
woman ever had possessed. 

Unfortunately these well-earned blessings 
came all too late. Mr. Jackson was a banker, 
financier, promoter, railway manager and man 
of affairs generally, with abundant longing for 
domestic enjoyment, yet with little leisure for 
its indulgence, while at the same time his 
talented consort, her soul stirred to its pro- 
foundest depths in the pursuit of a life's mis- 
sion, was too much engrossed with its exactions 
to enjoy to the full, as otherwise she would 
have done, the comforts and the luxuries un- 
limited wealth provided in such lavishness. 

Never before had Mrs. Jackson been free to 
spend money without considering the effect 
upon the domestic exchequer. Now her great- 
est enjoyment was in ministering to the sick 
and the afflicted, in providing for the wants of 
the needy, in relieving the ills of the unfortu- 
nate. This labor of love, together with her 



>. THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA >, 

pen work, almost completely monopolized her 
time, and left little leisure for what are known 
distinctively as social duties and pleasures. 

Her most prized diversion consisted of walks 
and rides through the near-by canons and over 
the mountains; Cheyenne Mountain ever pre- 
ferred; it was a trifle more remote, not nearly 
so accessible, hence much more exclusive, than 
other local attractions, albeit less frequented; 
circumstances that doubtless lent added zest to 
her ofttimes solitary excursions. 

It was to Cheyenne Mountain that Mrs. 
Jackson wrote this apotheosis: 

" By easy slope to west as if it had 
No thought, when first its soaring was begun, 
Except to look devoutly to the sun. 
It rises and has risen, until glad, 
With light as with a garment, it is clad, 
Each dawn, before the tardy plains have won 
One ray; and after day has long been done 
For us, the light doth cling reluctant, 
Sad to leave its brow. 

Beloved mountain, I 

Thy worshiper as thou the sun's, each morn 
My dawn, before the dawn, receive from thee; 
And think, as thy rose-tinted peaks I see, 

[si 



>. THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

That thou wcrt great when Homer was not 

born. 
And ere thou change all human song shall die! " 

A ranchman at the foot of the mountain, 
near Seven Falls, cared for a burro belonging 
to Mrs. Jackson, and one of the greatest of her 
privileges consisted in riding this sure-footed, 
faithful beast up and down the canon upon a 
summer afternoon. 

" Mrs. Jackson's Garden " is a name that yet 
attaches to a particular nook in Cheyenne 
Canon, conspicuous for its wealth of wild 
flowers, which were especially dear to her. 

Writing of Mrs. Jackson's domestic life at 
Colorado Springs, Susan Coolidge says: "It 
is not speaking too strongly to say that she 
reveled in it. Such a housekeeper as she grew to 
be is rarely seen. The spell of her enthusiasm 
affected her very servants. They were as much 
interested in her experiments and devices as her- 
self, and even prouder of her successes. Colo- 
rado is a paradise for flower-lovers. From 
earliest spring to late autumn the ravines, the 
mountain sides and the mesas furnish a succes- 
sion of delights. . The wide-eyed anemones, fair 
as those which star the Boboli Gardens, give 
place in turn to the stately pentstemons, purple, 

[6J 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

pink and scarlet, royal yuccas, and yellow 
columbines with spikes seven feet high, thickets 
of white and crimson roses, Mariposa lilies, 
painter's brush, its lips dyed with fire. There 
is no interval. It is like a procession from fairy- 
land. Colonel Higginson, in his interesting 
paper on Mrs. Jackson, speaks of her as once 
welcoming a friend with more than twenty dif- 
ferent vases of magnificent wild flowers, each 
vase filled with a great sheaf of a single species. 
I can well believe it. Her writing-desk and her 
picture frames were always wreathed with the 
kinnikinnick vine, of which she was so fond, 
and which in leaf and fruitage is like a glori- 
fied cranberry. Add a snapping fire of pifion 
logs for cold days, wolf and fox skins on the 
polished floors all the gatherings of her life 
little treasures brought from foreign countries, 
curious china, plaster casts, sketches and water- 
colors, many of them the gift of their artists, 
books innumerable, all combined and arranged 
with her inimitable gift of taste, and it is easy 
to imagine the charm of the effect. It was 
truly a delightful home. Her little dinners were 
particularly pleasant, and her devices for adorn- 
ing her table as inexhaustible as original. I 
remember a wreath of pansies of all colors ar- 
ranged in narrow tins half an inch high and 

[7] 



>. THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

curving in shape, so as to form a garland around 
the whole table, and her saying that it took 
exactly four hundred and sixty-three pansies 
to fill them." 

I enjoyed the acquaintance of Mrs. Jackson 
during almost the entire period of her resi- 
dence at Colorado Springs, though never a 
house guest, nor did I ever enjoy the privilege 
of protracted companionship with her. So 
highly prized was the privilege of acquaintance 
that no business or other consideration was ever 
permitted to interfere when opportunity of- 
fered for meeting her at her home or else- 
where; and such opportunities were quite 
frequent. 

The acquaintance began in Colorado before 
her marriage to Mr. Jackson, and continued to 
the end. I met her at various times in Denver, 
Manitou and Colorado Springs, and at her ideal 
home in the latter city was a frequent visitor 
from about 1876 to the date of her death, al- 
though much of the time she was absent in 
New York, Washington and in Southern Cali- 
fornia, in pursuit of a mission that obsessed 
her. 

The Indian question was ever uppermost in 
her mind, and it is questionable if any other 
topic introduced, upon the occasion of those 

[81 



>, THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

visits to her home, engaged her serious thought 
or attention. 

Local conditions seemed to conspire against 
her, and in view of them it is not re- 
markable that Mrs. Jackson should have been 
deprived of the sympathy and support of her 
friends and neighbors. She was scarcely lo- 
cated in Colorado when the citizen soldiery of 
the capital was called out to defend it from 
anticipated attacks by the Arapahoes and Chey- 
ennes. In 1879 occurred the Thornberg mas- 
sacre, the murder of Agent Meeker and the 
capture of his wife and daughter by Chief 
Ouray's band of Utes, events that agitated the 
Territory and the State as nothing before or 
since has done. 

Sympathy with her at the time was not to 
be expected; but interest in her work, and in 
the enthusiasm displayed in it, was simply im- 
pelling. She wouldn't let us talk about any- 
thing else. Her relation of experiences among 
the Mission Indians of California was of thrill- 
ing interest, albeit comprehension of the import 
of it all was not easy. 

Of far greater concern to me was the an- 
nounced purpose of Mrs. Jackson to tell the 
story in the form of a romance. This was in 
1883, after her return from California. That at 

[9] 



>> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA Jt 

once appealed to my imagination, and I readily 
recalled the outline she gave of it when, a few 
years later, I came to Southern California and 
became acquainted with a number of its real 
characters. 

My wife had for more than a year been a 
member of the household of the eldest son of 
the mistress of Camulos ranch Ramona's home 
Ex-State Senator R. F. del Valle, and well 
knew his mother, Dona Ysabel del Valle, his 
sister, Mrs. Josefa Forster, and two brothers, 
Ignacio and Ulpiano. She had, indeed, been 
present at the birth of Lucretia Louise del 
Valle, at this writing just returned with her dis- 
tinguished father, Senator del Valle, from a 
mission of peace to the warring factions in Old 
Mexico, sent as the special representative of 
the Secretary of State, W. J. Bryan. She not 
only knew these personages most intimately, 
but had spent varying periods at Camulos ranch, 
and every scene there recalling Ramona and 
Alessandro was familiar to her. Dona Mariana 
de Coronel, the intimate friend of Mrs. Jack- 
son, also was an old acquaintance. Hence my 
interest in " Ramona " became especially en- 
livened. 

Unfortunately, I did not at the time share in 
Mrs. Jackson's sympathy for the Indian to any 

[10] 



y, THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

great extent, nor did I possess the clarity of 
vision essential to a correct understanding of 
the Indian question, as it presented itself to her. 
As stated in the body of this volume, Mrs. Jack- 
son enjoyed something of a monopoly of her 
views, and was quite without a genuine sym- 
pathizer with her work in the entire State of 
Colorado. My ignorance of the real merits of 
the controversy was neither greater nor less 
than that entertained by the average citizen. 
Mrs. Jackson might turn on ever so many side- 
lights, yet the feeling in Colorado at the time 
was almost universal that the only good Indian 
was the dead Indian. 

We had not read to full purpose " A Century 
of Dishonor"; we looked upon Ramona and 
Alessandro and Father Salvierderra as beauti- 
ful characters, but we didn't look toward Temec- 
ula. We only thought of the Arapahoes and 
Cheyennes stealing upon Denver in the silence 
of night, with murderous intent. We looked 
away from Pechanga. We harped upon Father 
Meeker; but we never permitted ourselves to 
dwell upon the atrocious outrages committed 
and being committed by the white man 
on the Indians all over the San Jacinto 
Mountains! Ignorance and cowardice and 
hate had made savages of the whites, and 



Jt THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

left Helen Hunt Jackson to fight the battle 
alone. 

She died at San Francisco, August 12, 1885, 
in her fifty-fourth year. 

Well may we marvel at her courage, her 
patience, her perseverance and her unyielding 
zeal. Well may we, with Susan Coolidge, 
wonder : 

" What was she most like? Was she like the 

wind 
Fresh always and untired, intent to find 

New fields to penetrate, new heights to gain; 
Scattering all mists with sudden, radiant wing; 
Stirring the languid pulses; quickening 

The apathetic mood, the weary brain? 

Or was she like the sun, whose gift of cheer 
Endureth for all seasons of the year, 

Alike in winter's cold or summer's heat? 
Or like the sea, which brings its gifts from far, 
And still, wherever want and straitness are, 

Lays down a sudden largess at their feet? 

Or was she like a wood, where light and shade, 
And sound and silence, mingle unafraid; 

Where mosses cluster, and, in coverts dark, 
Shy blossoms court the brief and wandering air, 



& THE TRUE STORY OF RAMQNA > 

Mysteriously sweet; and here and there 
A firefly flashes like a sudden spark? 

Or like a willful brook, which laughs and leaps 
All unexpectedly, and never keeps 

The course predicted, as it seaward flows? 
Or like a stream-fed river, brimming high? 
Or like a fruit, where those who love descry 

A pungent charm no other flavor knows? 

I cannot find her type; in her were blent 
Each varied and each fortunate element 

Which could combine, with something all 

her own 

Sadness and mirthfulness, a chorded strain, 
The tender heart, the keen and searching brain, 

The social zest, the power to live alone. 

Comrade of comrades giving man the slip 
To seek in Nature truest comradeship, 

Tenacity and impulse ruled her fate, 
This grasping firmly what that flashed to feel 
The velvet scabbard and the sword of steel, 

The gift to strongly love, to frankly hate! 

Patience as strong as was her hopefulness; 
A joy in living which grew never less 

As years went on and age grew gravely nigh; 

[13] 



>. THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

Visions which pierced the veiling mists of pain, 
And saw beyond the mortal shadows plain 
The eternal day dawn broadening in the sky; 

The love of Doing, and the scorn of Done; 
The playful fancy, which, like glinting sun, 
No chill could daunt, no loneliness could 

smother. 

Upon her ardent pulse Death's dullness lies; 
Closed the brave lips, the merry, questioning 

eyes. 
She was herself. There is not such another." 



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CHAPTER I 
INSPIRATION OF " RAMONA "THE CORONELS 

THE devotion, vigor and perseverance with 
which Helen Hunt Jackson pursued her 
chief mission in life scarcely have a paral- 
lel. Her literary labor and fame culminated 
in the historical romance of " Ramona," the in- 
fluence of which has been second to the produc- 
tion of but one other American purpose writer. 
The inspiration of " Uncle Tom's Cabin " and of 
" Ramona " was identical the wrongs inflicted 
by a superior upon an inferior race. The chief 
aim of each was ultimately achieved; the one 
through immeasurable sacrifices of blood and 
treasure, the other through the peaceful evolu- 
tion of public sentiment, leading up to a revolt 
of the national conscience, and compelling a 
reversal of public policies. 
i It is not an extravagant claim that the hu- 
manitarian impulse now giving direction to the 
conduct of Indian affairs by the Government 
had its genesis largely in the romantic novel 
" Ramona." The influence of the woman and 
her work was not only immediate but lasting. 

[xsl 



> STORY OF RAMONA & 

It has come down to this day and hour. The 
tragedy of Temecula will never be repeated. 
The era of evictions has forever passed. The 
Mission Indians will not again be driven from 
their homes at the point of the bayonet. Helen 
Hunt Jackson's posthumous influence will con- 
tinue to shield them. 

On her death-bed Mrs. Jackson said: "I did 
not write ' Ramona ' ; it was written through 
me. My life-blood went into it all I had 
thought, felt and suffered for five years on 
the Indian question." 

Colorado, the home of the author of " Ra- 
mona," was long the border land. Its earlier 
citizens suffered greatly at the hands of the 
Indians. Many now living remember when 
even the capital of the State was menaced 
by roving bands of murderous Arapahoes and 
Cheyennes. The Meeker massacre is still fresh 
in the minds of its people. The treachery of 
the Utes may never be forgotten. But the 
prejudices of two generations, there and else- 
where, should give way to the fact that the 
Mission Indians of California belong to a differ- 
ent category: that they are peaceful, industrious 
and frugal; that they worship the white man's 
God, and endeavor, with a meager equipment, 
to raise themselves to his plane of civilization. 

[if] 




DON ANTONIO DE CORONEL 

Intimate friend of Helen Hunt Jackson, and who, with his 
wife, gave Mrs. Jackson the material from which was written 
the story of " Ramona." " He is sixty-five years of age, but he 
is young; the best waltzer in Los Angeles * * *; his eye keen, 
his blood fiery quick; his memory like a burning-glass." (Mrs. 
Jackson in " Glimpses of California and the Afissions") 




Wife of Don Antonio dc CoroncI, the intimate friend of Mrs. 
Jackson. 



& THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

Some of them loved their homes so well that 
they suffered death within them in stoic prefer- 
ence to going out into the world in search of 
others. Not a few so died as martyrs to 
boasted American civilization! 

It was Helen Hunt Jackson's purpose to tell 
the whole pitiful story. It was her desire to 
paint it in its true colors in an appendix to her 
" A Century of Dishonor," but she was per- 
suaded that it was the better plan to clothe it 
first in the presumably more attractive garb of 
romance, and then to follow with other works 
of a more historical character after the ear of 
the public should be secured. This was the sage 
advice of Don Antonio Francisco de Coronel 
and his wife Dona Mariana, living at Los 
Angeles ; although these staunch friends did not 
begin to realize the enormous sale which the 
initial story was destined to reach, the far- 
reaching influence it was to exert. 

In November, 1883, after her return from 
California to Colorado Springs, Mrs. Jackson 
wrote to her dear friends, Sefior and Sefiora de 
Coronel: " I am going to write a novel, in which 
will be set forth some Indian experiences to 
move people's hearts. People will read a novel 
when they will not read serious books." 

Nor does popular interest seem to decrease 

[17] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA >. 

with the lapse of time. The public library of 
Los Angeles now owns one hundred and five 
volumes of " Ramona," yet one can secure a 
copy only by means of a reservation and a 
long wait. It would seem that at least nine of 
every ten tourists read the story. Thousands 
of them visit the San Diego, the San Luis Rey, 
and the Santa Barbara Missions every season, 
confessedly because of the association with 
them of Ramona and Alessandro; and all esteem 
it a privilege to catch a glimpse of Camulos, 
as the trains of the Southern Pacific Railroad 
pass through the hallowed spot. 

In the Coronel Collection at the Chamber of 
Commerce in Los Angeles is a portrait of Helen 
Hunt Jackson in oil, about 7 by 12, by Alex- 
ander F. Harmer; and beneath it is the little 
mahogany table on which Mrs. Jackson did 
much of her magazine work while in California. 
This table was made especially to her order, 
that she might write while in a reclining posi- 
tion, and under the personal supervision of Don 
Antonio de Coronel. 

But the world, outside of Southern California, 
knows little of the Coronels, the relation of 
the author of " Ramona " to them, or the rea- 
son for displaying the portrait and the table 
with this particular collection of curios. Few 

[18] 



>, THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

indeed know that nearly all of the characters 
in the story were living persons idealized, that 
some of them are living to-day, or that the 
famous jewels, most unlikely incident of the 
plot, are still in the possession of the woman 
who most likely suggested to Mrs. Jackson the 
character of Ramona. 

These facts and incidents constitute most in- 
teresting sidelights. The truth will be found 
to be, as so often it is, stranger than fiction. 
It is here first given, only once removed from 
the lips of the living actors. 



[19] 



CHAPTER II 

MEETING THE CORONELS BISHOP MORAMRS. 
JACKSON'S AFFECTION FOR THE CORONELS 

THE inception and development of " Ra- 
mona " is in itself a story of more than 
ordinary interest. It was the product of 
a peculiar and fortunate combination of cir- 
cumstances and events, a happy mingling of 
realism and romance, the timely meeting of 
design with chance. 

Helen Hunt Jackson came to Southern Cali- 
fornia in 1 88 1, with a purpose not too well 
defined. She had been commissioned by the 
Century Company "to write something about 
the Mission Indians." It would have been an 
easy matter for her, and without leaving com- 
fortable apartments in a hotel, to have prepared 
an interesting series of articles on the prolific 
theme, and her publishers would doubtless have 
been satisfied; but she was directed to higher 
and greater achievements by influences not 
reckoned with by her or those whom she repre- 
sented. The inspiration may have been heaven- 
sent, but the instrumentalities that proved most 
potent were human, tangible, real. 



Jt THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

The conditions were ripe for her mission; 
indeed, they were waiting for her. To the 
task of harvesting the matured fruit she 
brought a rare equipment. If events and cir- 
cumstances were favorable, a less earnest, a 
less receptive, a less impressionable person 
might easily have failed to recognize their sig- 
nificance. 

She brought a letter to Bishop Francisco 
Mora of the Los Angeles diocese. He gave her 
a cordial welcome and pointed the way. Don 
Antonio Francisco de Coronel, he assured her, 
was the traditional friend of the Indian in 
these parts, and to him and his noble wife 
she was sent with a suitable letter of intro- 
duction. 

The Coronel rancho consisted of seventy-five 
acres of fruitful land lying in the valley of the 
Los Angeles River, on the southern outskirts 
of the city, and was covered with a noble 
growth of citrus and deciduous fruit trees. In 
the center of the tract was the hacienda, for 
decades a conspicuous landmark. It was a 
typical Spanish adobe house, with projecting 
tile roof and broad verandas opening upon 
the proverbial " court." It contained thirteen 
large rooms, more than sufficient for the needs 
of its two occupants, the old Don and his young 

[21] 



>. THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

wife; but Spanish hospitality took into account 
the necessity of providing accommodations for 
all comers, and it is not likely the hacienda was 
ever found to be too large. 

The rancho was a gift to the Don's father 
from the Mexican government, in considera- 
tion of distinguished services in the field, the 
grant dating back to the early 30*3. It de- 
scended to Don Antonio, who came upon the 
stage of action in time to be of service in 
opposing American aggression. He, indeed, 
had been singled out for the distinction of 
conveying to the Mexican capital the flags 
captured in various engagements with the in- 
vaders, nearly losing his life in carrying out 
his mission. 

The rancho was still intact upon the occa- 
sion of Helen Hunt Jackson's first visit, 1881, 
but the subsequent growth of Los Angeles has 
completely obliterated all of the ancient bound- 
ary lines. Railroads cross and recross it, 
streets have been cut through, monster depots 
and factories built, residences erected and the 
once pastoral quiet of the locality has forever 
departed. The famous adobe dwelling itself, 
still retaining its original proportions, but fast 
going to decay, stands within the inclosure of 
a mammoth cracker factory near the corner of 

1*3] 



^ THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

Central Avenue and Seventh Street, and is now 
used for storing merchandise. 

On her first visit to the historic hacienda 
amidst the orange trees, Mrs. Jackson met a 
cordial reception at the hands of Don Antonio 
and Dona Mariana, not because of her dis- 
tinction or her worth, but because she bore a 
letter from the Bishop. They had never before 
heard the name of their guest. They had not 
been blessed with offspring, and had never read 
her "Bits of Talk" for young folks. They 
had felt the omnipotence of perfect, patient love, 
but not from reading her story of "Zeph." 
They knew, for it had come home to them as 
to few others, about " A Century of Dishonor," 
though they had never seen the book. They 
had been fighting the battles of the Indians for 
many years, in the most practical and helpful 
way, without the aid of allies beyond the moun- 
tains, without knowledge of the devoted work 
being done in other portions of the vineyard 
by the Helen Hunts and their colleagues else- 
where. 

In the old and happy days of Church domina- 
tion and priestly rule there had been no "In- 
dian question." That came only after Ameri- 
can " civilization " took from the red men their 
lands and gave them nothing in return. It 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

ministered neither to their spiritual, intellec- 
tual nor physical needs. It neither helped 
them nor permitted them to help themselves. 
It simply abandoned them to their fate. In 
struggling with this they ever counted upon the 
sympathy, the advice and the material aid of 
Don Antonio and his tender-hearted wife, 
Mariana. 

The situation had reached a critical stage 
when Helen Hunt Jackson appeared on the 
scene. The statement of her mission and the 
proffer of her assistance at once won the hearts 
of Don Antonio and Dona Mariana. The mu- 
tual confidence early established soon developed 
into friendship and ripened into love; and the 
last meeting of the trio was quite as pathetic 
as was the first. Dona Mariana was very ill, 
and believed she was on her death-bed. Helen 
Hunt Jackson had responded to a summons, 
and the speedy rally of the patient was doubt- 
less largely due to her visit. " You are going 
to get well, Mariana," said Mrs. Jackson. 
" You will survive me. I feel that you will 
live to complete my work." Only a few weeks 
later Helen Hunt Jackson was among the blest. 

A touching tribute to the affection between 
Mrs. Jackson and Sefior de Coronel is her own 
statement in a letter from her at San Fran- 




BISHOP FRANCISCO MORA, LOS ANGELES DIOCESE, 

To whom Helen Hunt Jackson brought a letter of introduction 
and who introduced her to the Coronels. 



* THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

Mexican woman, flitting about among the 
plants, or sporting with a superb Saint Bernard 
dog. Her clear olive skin, soft brown eyes, 
delicate sensitive nostrils, and broad smiling 
mouth, are all of the Spanish Madonna type; 
and when her low brow is bound, as is often her 
wont, by turban folds of soft brown or green 
gauze, her face becomes a picture indeed. She 
is the young wife of a gray-headed Mexican 
senor, of whom by his own gracious permis- 
sion I shall speak by his familiar name, Don 
Antonio. 

" Whoever has the fortune to pass as a friend 
across the threshold of this house finds himself 
transported, as by a miracle, into the life of 
a half-century ago. The rooms are ornamented 
with fans, shells, feather and wax flowers, pic- 
tures, saints' images, old laces, and stuffs, in the 
quaint gay Mexican fashion. On the day when 
I first saw them, they were brilliant with bloom. 
In every one of the deep window-seats stood a 
cone of bright flowers, its base made by large 
white datura blossoms, their creamy whorls all 
turned outward, making a superb decoration. 
I went for but a few moments' call. I stayed 
three hours, and left carrying with me be- 
wildering treasures of pictures of the olden 
time." 

[26] 



CHAPTER III 

FIRST MEETING WITH MISSION INDIANS PREPA- 
RATIONS TO VISIT INDIAN SETTLEMENTS 
CAMULOS RANCH HOME OF RAMONA 

AT her initial interview with the Coronels 
little more was accomplished than the 
establishment of confidence. A second 
conference was arranged for the following 
week. It happened to be Christmas day, 1881, 
a circumstance that appealed to Helen Hunt 
Jackson only after her arrival at the hacienda, 
so absorbed was she in other thoughts. Don 
Antonio, Dona Mariana and their guest were 
seated upon the broad veranda, the latter in- 
tent upon the details of her hosts' relation of 
Indian history and Indian wrongs, when the 
conversation was interrupted by the appearance 
in the yard of five mounted men, evidently in 
great mental perturbation. 

"More trouble," quietly suggested the Don, 
accustomed to such visitations. " But it must 
be unusually serious, for these are all chiefs of 
their tribes, and their ponies indicate that they 
have been ridden a long distance and very fast. 

[37] 



> TORY OF RAMONA * 

Excuse me for a moment while I try to discover 
what it means." 

The interview between the Don and the In- 
dians was very animated, all talking at once. 
Mrs. Jackson soon became as excited as were 
the Indians. She could not understand their 
language, it being a mixture of Spanish with 
the tribal dialect; but their voices and manner 
indicated the deepest distress, and it was not 
difficult to perceive the import of their mission. 
It soon developed that the water rights to their 
lands, without which they were valueless, had 
been sold to a syndicate of white men; and 
these chiefs had come, as so often before, for 
counsel from Sefior and Sefiora de Coronel. 

On three distinct occasions had the life of 
Don Antonio been saved by the timely interces- 
sion of Mission Indians. The bond between 
them was indissoluble. The Don was their 
" padre," and Dona Mariana was in their sight 
little less than a saint. 

Mrs. Jackson begged the privilege of talk- 
ing with the chiefs, and, with the help of her 
friends in interpreting, she was soon established 
in their confidence. The inspiration at that 
moment seized her of visiting their villages, 
and the foundation was laid for securing, as she 
might in no other way, the fullest confirmation 

[28] 




THE FAMOUS TORX ALTAR CLOTH, 
CAMULOS CHAPEL 

" The white linen altar cloth, the cloth which the Senora 
Moreno had with her own hands made into one solid front 
of beautiful lace of the Mexican fashion * * * lay torn." 
" Kamona." 



^ THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA ^ 

of all that had been told her prior to their visit. 
This was most pleasing to Don Antonio and 
Dona Mariana, and the incident was regarded 
as fortunate; for Helen Hunt Jackson was as- 
sured of a welcome in the Indian settlements 
such as otherwise might not have been ac- 
corded her, and of knowledge that could be 
acquired by no other means. 

The details of the journey were soon ar- 
ranged. It included a long and wearisome ride 
over the mountains to the Indian settlements, 
with a side trip of observation to Camulos 
ranch, which the Coronels desired her to visit, 
that she might get a better idea of a typical 
Spanish abode, and because its occupants were 
not only zealous children of the Church, but 
traditional friends of the Indians as well. The 
Coronels assured Mrs. Jackson that Camulos 
ranch was one of the few remaining of the old 
Spanish homesteads where the original of a 
California hacienda still existed. 

The " Century's " artist, the late Mr. Henry 
Sandham, and Mr. Abbot Kinney accompanied 
her on this journey. The owner and driver of 
the carriage in which they first rode was Mr. 
N. H. Mitchell, then conducting a livery stable 
at Anaheim, California, and now residing in 
Los Angeles. 

M 



> STORY OF RAMONA * 

It is not the purpose to follow Mrs. Jackson 
in her wanderings over the San Jacinto moun- 
tains. The details have been recorded in re- 
ports to the Government, published as an ap- 
pendix to the second edition of " A Century of 
Dishonor." It is enough here to say that the 
name of Helen Hunt Jackson is to this day 
revered in the abode of every Mission In- 
dian, and that, were it in the power of 
these grateful people, it would long ago 
have been placed in the Church calendar of 
saints. 

Judged by the accuracy of her description of 
Camulos, it is likely the pictures she drew of 
Indian life were faithful and conscientious. 
She was at the ranch but a few hours, a cir- 
cumstance which makes her portrayal of it all 
the more remarkable. In the short time she 
not only observed every detail of situation and 
environment, but while there evolved the chief 
incidents of the story. 

" It was sheep-shearing time in Southern Cali- 
fornia." The Indians from over the mountains 
were there. All of the preparations described 
in the opening chapters of " Ramona " had been 
made. Father Salvierderra had come down 
from the Santa Barbara Mission. The matin 
songs had echoed through the court. Mass had 

[30! 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

been said in the little chapel in the orange 
grove. The altar cloth, made originally from 
Dona Ysabel del Valle's wedding gown, was 
spotless in its whiteness; but to the discerning 
eye disclosed a patch; for Helen Hunt Jack- 
son saw it, and every visitor there since has 
seen it, although it is probable that on that par- 
ticular day its existence was unknown even 
to Sefiora del Valle, the widowed mistress of 
Camulos. That dear, sweet soul, had been oc- 
cupied with manifold household duties, and 
may not have been as observant of the smaller 
details as was her guest. However that may 
be, the patch was an inspiration, and provided 
the material for one of the most touching inci- 
dents of the story. 

The dimensions of the ranch have since been 
somewhat curtailed, from forty-five thousand 
to nineteen hundred acres; but the ranch-house, 
or hacienda, with its picturesque environment 
and now historical belongings, survives the 
thirty years that have since elapsed, without 
essential modification or change. The visitor 
of to-day, stepping from a Southern Pacific train 
into the precincts of Camulos, will need to go 
through the yard where the shearing was done, 
past the shed in which the wool was stored and 
in the heat by which Felipe was overcome, to 

[31] 



* STORY OF RAMONA * 

reach the entrance of the house; for the rail- 
road track is in the rear of it. 

Once within the court every scene will seem 
familiar; the arbor and the fountain and the 
chapel; the path leading down to the stream 
where Ramona washed the stains from the altar 
cloth, and where Alessandro first beheld the 
wondrous beauty of the maiden; the porch on 
which the raw-hide bed stood with its precious 
burden, and where the lover drew symphonies 
from the violin fetched at such cost of effort 
by Jose from Temecula for the delectation of 
Felipe, the invalid. 

With the physical conditions unchanged in 
any material particular, it is not difficult to 
fancy the actual scenes being re-enacted. All 
of the influences of earth and air, of sheen and 
shadow, of restless foliage, and laughing waters 
of fountain and stream, combine to produce 
a state of consciousness, the disturbance of 
which comes necessarily in the nature of a 
shock. 



CHAPTER IV 

THE REAL RAMONA AND OTHER CHARACTERS 
ALESSANDRO GUADALUPE THE RAMONA 
JEWELS KILLING OF ALESSANDRO THE ALES- 
SANDRO-RAMONA ROMANCE 

VARIOUS considerations, now no longer 
potent, have prompted the suppression 
of the real facts regarding the story of 
"Ramona" and the principal characters in it, 
and there have been circulated innumerable 
fictions. 

Most absurd of the stories with which tour- 
ists are regaled is the one that credits the 
author with having been bribed to write it by 
interested parties for political effect, and that 
the $10,000 thus earned were used in setting up 
her husband in business. An equally absurd 
yarn that has found believers of a certain class, 
credited the authorship of the story to an 
unfrocked priest, whose nearly completed manu- 
script was appropriated by Helen Hunt Jackson. 
A brochure that originated in Los Angeles, and 
which has reached a large sale, contains a half- 
tone from a photograph of an Indian woman 

[33] 



^ STORY OF RAMONA > 

living near San Jacinto, which the author claims 
is "the real Ramona." There is scarcely a 
settlement south of the Tehachapi that is not 
pointed out to the traveler as the " home of 
Ramona." She was married at every mission 
from San Diego to San Luis Obispo, if one 
but credits local legend. The real facts, until 
now withheld, are related within these pages. 

For the Sefiora Moreno of the story there 
was doubtless a hint in the equally strong, but 
infinitely more lovely, real character who was 
until 1905 the queen of Camulos ranch Dona 
Ysabel del Valle, for many years a widow. 
The property descended to her husband from 
his father, to whom it was granted before 
American occupation, for meritorious service in 
the Mexican army. 

Ex-State Senator Reginald F. del Valle, the 
eldest son of the widowed mistress of Camulos 
ranch, may have suggested to the novelist the 
Felipe of the story. He has long been an 
honored citizen of Los Angeles, a prominent 
member of the local bar, and influential in the 
councils of the Democratic organization in Cali- 
fornia. 

Ramona was a creation of Helen Hunt Jack- 
son. She is supposed to have been a happy 
blending of two characters of the del Valle 

34] 




BLANCA YNDART, 

As a child at Camulos, now Mrs. James McGuire, Los Angeles. 
" The one human document who may in truth be regarded as 
' Ramona ' of the story." Page 35- 



* THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

household Blanca Yndart, a Spanish girl, a 
ward of Seriora del Valle, and Guadalupe, an 
Indian girl, given to the Sefiora when a child 
by a Piru chief. Blanca was the only child of 
U. Yndart, a resident of Santa Barbara. Her 
mother, dying when the child was five years 
of age, committed her to the keeping of Sefiora 
del Valle, and she lived at Camulos ranch as 
one of the family until she was fourteen. Then 
her father took a second wife, and Blanca re- 
turned to the parental roof, living there until 
her marriage, four years later, to James Ma- 
guire. Upon the death of her husband, some 
years ago, Blanca, with her two children, re- 
moved to Los Angeles, where she now resides. 
Blanca is the one human document who may 
in truth be regarded as the Ramona of the 
story. She is of the purest Spanish blood, both 
father and mother having been born in Castile; 
and at sixty is still a woman of exceptional 
beauty. Her grandfather, Captain Yndart, was 
a seafaring man, more or less familiar with all 
the navigable waters of the globe. In his world 
wanderings, covering a period of forty years, he 
accumulated a chest of treasures of surpassing 
beauty and worth; and these are the " Ramona 
jewels." For years they were held in trust by 
Sefiora del Valle for Blanca Yndart, when she 

[35] 



Jt STORY OF RAMONA * 

should be married; and they are still in the 
possession of Mrs. Maguire. They consist, in 
the main, of a large cross of pearls of rare purity 
and unusual size, a rosary of pearls, and a single 
pearl, pear-shaped, of extraordinary dimensions, 
and valued at several thousand dollars; "tray 
after tray of jewels," an East Indian shawl of 
texture so delicate that it can be drawn through 
an ordinary finger-ring; a number of dainty ker- 
chiefs, and other rich and costly fabrics from 
the Orient " shawls and ribosos of damask, 
laces, gowns of satin, of velvet." 

A daughter of Captain Yndart, who subse- 
quently married a cousin of the same name, 
was living at Santa Barbara when the old sea 
captain paid his last visit to the Pacific coast. 
Having a presentiment that he would not sur- 
vive another voyage, he left the chest of treas- 
ures with his daughter, with instructions as to 
their disposition at his death. They were to be 
divided between his two grandchildren, Blanca 
and Pancho Yndart, the latter a cousin of the 
former. Blanca's mother was delicate, and real- 
izing that she would not live to see her daugh- 
ter married, she provided that, at her death, 
Blanca should be taken into the del Valle family 
at Camulos; Dofia Ysabel del Valle being her 
nearest and dearest friend. 

36] 



y, THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA *t 

Mrs. Yndart, unwilling to trust others with 
the jewels, herself took them to the ranch, and 
it is said that not even her own husband knew 
of their existence. This was before the era 
of railroads at Santa Barbara, and the route 
chosen along the beach was safe enough when 
the tide was out, but a miscalculation was made, 
and in rounding a promontory between Ventura 
and the Malibu ranch, in water reaching almost 
to the seat of the vehicle, Mrs. Yndart and 
the treasures narrowly escaped being washed 
into the sea. 

Upon the death of her mother Blanca went 
to Camulos and remained there for nine years, 
wholly unconscious of the existence of the 
jewels, or that such a rich marriage dot awaited 
her. This was strictly in accord with the 
wishes of her mother, which were sacredly re- 
spected by Sefiora del Valle. For thirteen 
years, and until Blanca's wedding, the jewels 
remained in a stout chest beneath the bed of 
the Sefiora, unseen by others. 

Helen Hunt Jackson never saw Blanca or 
the jewels, but received the story from the lips 
of Dona Mariana de Coronel. The little Indian 
girl, Guadalupe, ward of Sefiora del Valle, was 
at Camulos when Mrs. Jackson visited there. 
She learned from members of the household of 

[37] 



>> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

the relations of the child to Blanca, correspond- 
ing with those of Margarita to Ramona in the 
romance. The story of the girl had also been 
told to Helen Hunt Jackson by Dona Mariana 
de Coronel. There is a sequel to it which Mrs. 
Jackson never heard. It is an interesting bit 
of the tragedy of life, and is here related. 

Notwithstanding their lineage and the tradi- 
tions connecting them with Mexican rule, the 
del Valles have never, since American occupa- 
tion, been wanting in loyalty to the United 
States Government. There have been numer- 
ous occasions for the visit of regular army 
officers to various points in Southern California, 
and in passing up and down the coast it was 
the good fortune of many of them to enjoy the 
hospitality of Camulos ranch. They were al- 
ways sure of a cordial welcome there, especially 
at the hands of the elder del Valle, who, in his 
declining years, took special delight in recount- 
ing with those military gentlemen the thrilling 
events that had transpired in this borderland. 

Upon the occasion of a visit of Captain Rid- 
ley, of the 4th U. S. Cavalry, to the ranch, he 
was struck by the singular beauty of the little 
Indian girl, whom he saw flitting in and out 
of the court. Turning to a companion, a citi- 
zen of Los Angeles who had accompanied him 

[38] 






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* STORY OF RAMONA * 

on this journey, he inquired with some agita- 
tion: "Who is that girl? She is the exact 
image of my sister ! " His friend could only 
say that she was an Indian, given to the family 
by a Piru chief, but adding that the hostess 
would doubtless tell him all that was known of 
her. 

... An interview with Dona Ysabel del Valle 
was immediately sought, followed by a talk 
with the girl and a brief explanation; and when 
the officer left Camulos he took with him to 
his post, in Arizona, the child who bore such 
a striking family resemblance. She was his 
daughter! The child had known no mother 
save the kind Sefiora del Valle, and the parting 
with her was of course painful. Her own 
mother, an Indian woman, had been lost sight 
of in the wanderings of her tribe. 

The circumstances under which this Indian 
girl, Guadalupe, came into the possession of 
Sefiora del Valle have been related to the au- 
thors by Senator R. F. del Valle and are these. 
Sefiora del Valle and others of her household 
were crossing the Santa Clara River, which 
runs through Camulos ranch; the Senator, then 
a mere youth, riding on a pony ahead of the 
others. He came upon a little Indian girl, al- 
most naked, who was hiding in the bushes. 

[39] 



>, THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA ^ 

But when the Senora came up, the child bright- 
ened and ran to her, crying and pleading to go 
with her. The child had previously been at 
Camulos ranch and had been so tenderly and 
considerately treated by the Senora that she 
wanted to go to her, and had slipped away 
from her squalid Indian quarters, not far 
from the del Valle abode, and was on her way 
there. The Sefiora took the child to her home, 
and afterward the Piru chief, to whose tribe the 
child belonged, consented that she might be- 
come the ward of Senora del Valle. 

The sagacity of the advice of the Coronels 
to Helen Hunt Jackson to visit Camulos is thus 
shown to have been happily vindicated. When 
she undertook to write " Ramona " it was only 
necessary to gather the tangled threads of fact 
into her loom as warp, and, with the aid of her 
fancy as woof, to weave the beautiful and sym- 
metrical narrative that has done so much to 
enrich and elevate American literature. 

There was no Ramona, and there was no 
Alessandro, in the relation in which they are 
portrayed by Mrs. Jackson. And yet there was 
a strong suggestion of both the incidents and 
the persons in events transpiring at the time. 
It is an historical fact that in October, 1877, 
Juan Diego, a Cahuilla Indian, was shot and 

[40] 



* THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

killed by Sam Temple for alleged horse steal- 
ing, in the Cahuilla Range, a spur of the San 
Jacinto Mountains. The tragedy was not only 
known to Mrs. Jackson, but she made it a 
special feature of one of her reports to the De- 
partment of the Interior, and it is related in 
the appendix to " A Century of Dishonor." It 
is here given as written by Mrs. Jackson: 

" An incident that had occurred on the 
boundaries of the Cahuilla Reservation, a few 
weeks before our arrival there, is of importance 
as illustrative of the need of some legal pro- 
tection for the Indians in Southern California. 
A Cahuilla Indian named Juan Diego had built 
for himself a house and cultivated a small patch 
of ground on a high mountain ledge a few 
miles north of the village. Here he lived alone 
with wife and baby. He had for some years 
been what Indians called ' locoed ' ; at times 
crazy, never dangerous, but yet certainly in- 
sane for longer or shorter periods. His con- 
dition was known to the agent, who told us he 
feared he would be obliged to shut Juan up 
unless he got better. It was also well known 
throughout the neighboring country, as we 
found on repeated inquiry. 

" Everybody knew Juan was locoed (a crazy 
condition affecting animals from eating a cer- 

41] 



>. THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

tain loco weed.) He came home at night rid- 
ing a strange horse. His wife exclaimed: 
'Why, whose horse is that?' Juan looked at 
the horse and replied confusedly, ' Where is 
my horse, then?' The woman, much fright- 
ened, then said : ' You must take that horse 
right back. They will say you stole it ! ' Juan 
said he would as soon as he had rested; then 
threw himself down and fell asleep. 

" From this sleep he was awakened by the 
barking of the dogs, and ran out of the house 
to see what it meant. The woman followed, 
and was the only witness of what then oc- 
curred. A white man named Temple, the 
owner of the horse which Juan had ridden 
home, rode up, and on seeing Juan poured out 
a volley of oaths, leveled his gun and shot him 
dead. After Juan had fallen on the ground, 
Temple rode near and fired three more shots 
into the body, one in the forehead, one in the 
cheek and one in the wrist; the woman looking 
on. He then took his horse, which was stand- 
ing in front of the house, and rode away. 

" The woman, with the baby on her back, 
ran to the Cahuilla village and told what had 
happened. This was in the night. At dawn 
the Indians went over to the place, brought the 
murdered man's body to the village and buried 

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t THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

it. The excitement was intense. The teacher, 
in giving an account of the affair, said that 
for a few days she feared she would have to 
close the school and leave the village. 

" The murderer went to the nearest justice 
of the peace and gave himself up, saying he had 
in self-defense killed an Indian. He swore that 
the Indian ran toward him with a knife. A 
jury of twelve men was summoned, who visited 
the spot, listened to Temple's story, pro- 
nounced him guiltless, and the justice so de- 
cided. The woman's testimony was not taken. 
It would have been worthless if it had been, so 
far as influencing that jury's minds was con- 
cerned. Her statement was positive that Juan 
had no knife, nor weapon of any kind; that he 
sprang up from his sleep and ran out hastily 
to see what had happened, and was shot almost 
as soon as he had crossed the threshold of the 
door. 

" The Agent in San Diego, on being informed 
by us of the facts in the case, reluctantly ad- 
mitted that there would be no use whatever in 
bringing a white man to trial for the murder 
of an Indian under such circumstances, with 
only Indian testimony to convict him. This 
was corroborated, and the general animus of 
public feeling was vividly illustrated to us by a 

[43] 



* STORY OF RAMONA * 

conversation we had later with one of the 
jurors in the case, a fine, open-hearted, manly 
young fellow, far superior in education and 
social standing to the average Southern 
California ranchman. He not only justified 
Temple's killing of the Indian, but said he 
would have done the same thing himself. ' I 
don't care whether the Indian had a knife or 
not,' he said; 'that didn't cut any figure in the 
case at all, the way I looked at it. Any man 
that would take a horse of mine and ride him 
up that mountain trail, I'd shoot him whenever 
I found him. Stockmen have just got to pro- 
tect themselves in this country.' 

" The fact that the Indian had left his own 
horse, a well known one, in the corral from 
which he had taken Temple's, that he had rid- 
den the straight trail to his own door and 
left the horse in front of it, thus tracked and 
caught, as he would have been, weighed noth- 
ing in this young man's mind. He was finally 
forced to say, however: 'Well, I'll agree that 
Temple was to blame for firing into him 
after he was dead. That was mean, I'll 
allow.' " 

This is the real tragedy that gave to Mrs. 
Jackson the pictured killing of Alessandro in 
the Cahuilla range of the San Jacinto Moun- 

[44] 



* THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

tains, where he, with Ramona, sought refuge 
from the trespassing white man. 

The slayer of Juan Diego was Sam Temple, 
the brutal Jim Farrar of " Ramona." He con- 
tinued to live at the foot of the mountain, more 
or less shunned by his neighbors because of 
the still popular belief that his victim was in 
the deplorable mental condition described by 
Helen Hunt Jackson, when, as Alessandro, he 
was found in possession of the white man's 
horse. 

There was also current at the time a legend 
connecting one Ramon Corralez with a roman- 
tic elopement with a half-breed Indian girl 
named Lugarda Sandoval. The young couple 
in their flight are supposed to have experienced 
many of the painful episodes credited to Ra- 
mona and Alessandro in the night journeys 
over the mountains to San Diego. 

At the same time Los Angeles was ringing 
with the sensational infatuation of a beautiful 
American girl of the city with a Saboba Indian, 
whom she met during an outing with her 
parents in the San Jacinto Mountains. They 
were not permitted to marry and did not elope; 
but it is likely the incident, in connection with 
the Corralez-Sandoval affair, furnished the in- 
spiration for the Ramona-Alessandro romance. 

[45] 



CHAPTER V 

WHERE "RAMONA" WAS WRITTEN THE NAME 
"RAMONA" HELPING THE MISSION INDIANS- 
MRS. JACKSON'S DEATH LOVE OF THE IN- 
DIANS FOR HER 

MRS. JACKSON returned to Colorado 
from California in the early summer 
of 1883. From her home on November 
8th of that year she wrote to the Coronels, a 
part of the letter reading : " I am going to write 
a novel, in which will be set forth some Indian 
experiences in a way to move people's hearts. 
. . . The thing I want most in the way of 
help from you is this: I would like an account, 
written in as much detail as you remember of 
the time when you, dear Mr. Coronel, went to 
Temecula and marked off the boundaries of the 
Indians' land there . . . and I have written 
to Father Ubach and to Mr. Morse of San 
Diego for other reminiscences. You and they 
are the only persons to whom I have spoken of 
my purpose of writing the novel, and I do not 
wish anything said about it. I shall keep it a 
secret until the book is done. . . . I wish I 

[46] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

had had this plan in my mind last year when I 
was in Los Angeles. I would have taken notes 
of many interesting things you told me. But 
it is only recently, since writing out for our 
report the full accounts of the different bands 
of Indians there, that I have felt that I dared 
undertake the writing of a long story." 

This epistolary statement is used by many, 
and with evident justification, on which to base 
the assertion that Mrs. Jackson did not even 
conceive the story of " Ramona " while in Cali- 
fornia. 

It is to be conceded that the novel was com- 
pleted in New York. Sefiora de Coronel de- 
clares positively that Mrs. Jackson talked to 
her about the story, expressed a desire to lo- 
cate the scene at the Coronel hacienda and told 
her she would name the novel "Ramona," all 
before her departure for the East in 1883. 

Mr. Henry Sandham, the " Century's " artist, 
has declared: "At the time of the California 
sojourn I knew neither the name nor the exact 
details of the proposed book; but I did know 
that the general plan was a defense of the Mis- 
sion Indians, together with a plea for the 
preservation of the Mission buildings, and so 
on; the whole to be enveloped in the mys- 
tery and poetry of romance. I had thus suffi- 

[47] 



* STORY OF RAMONA * 

cicnt knowledge of the spirit of the text to 
work with keener zest upon the sketches for 
the illustrations; sketches, which, it may be of 
interest to know, were always made on the 
spot with Mrs. Jackson close at hand, suggest- 
ing emphasis to this object or prominence to 
that, as it was to have special mention in the 
book." 

To the authors Seriora de Coronel has de- 
clared that at her home Mrs. Jackson even 
selected the name " Ramona " for her intended 
romance, and relates this incident: " On a visit 
of Mrs. Jackson to the home of Dr. J. De 
Barth Shorb, near Pasadena, a child of the 
family was addressed as * Ramona/ The liquid 
sound caught Mrs. Jackson's ear, and she re- 
marked: 'That is a pretty name. Please say 
it again.' On her way home she continually 
repeated the name, evidencing she was im- 
pressed by its rhythmic sound. At my first 
meeting with Mrs. Jackson thereafter she ex- 
claimed: 'Oh, I have heard such a beautiful 
name, Ramona, and I am going to use it as 
the title of my book.' " 

Seriora de Coronel says that Mrs. Jackson 
imposed secrecy on her and her husband con- 
cerning her intended romance. 

It is not impossible to reconcile the quota- 

48] 




DORA MARIANA DE CORONEL IX HER NEW HOME, 
LOS ANGELES, 1889 




RAMONA LUBO, CAHUILLA INDIAN, 

Wife of Juan Diego, killed by Jim Farrar of " Ramona," at her 
husband's grave. Because Mrs. Jackson pictured the tragic death 
of Alessandro with the same conditions attending the killing of 
Juan Diego, this Indian woman has been erroneously proclaimed 
and commercialized as the " Real Ramona." 



y, THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

tion from Mrs. Jackson's letter of November 
8, 1883, with the assertions of Sefiora de Coro- 
nel and Mr. Sandham. Mrs. Jackson came to 
California primarily as the special representa- 
tive of the " Century Magazine," to secure in- 
formation concerning the California Mission 
Indians and contribute articles upon the sub- 
ject to that magazine. She was also commis- 
sioned by the Interior Department "to visit 
the Mission Indians of California, and ascertain 
the location and condition of the various 
bands." 

She learned of the unrighteous treatment of 
the Temecula Indians by the white man and of 
the brutal murder of Juan Diego by Sam 
Temple. Her very soul was aflame. She was 
writing magazine articles and recording facts 
for the joint report rendered by her and Mr. 
Abbot Kinney to the Department of the In- 
terior. All the pitiful story she was to give 
to the public. She so asserted repeatedly. It 
may have been that while in California she did 
not wish her plan to write a novel to be known, 
but before her departure she did announce and 
discuss giving the Mission Indian situation to 
the public. At one time she intended to tell 
the story in an appendix to a new edition of 
her "A Century of Dishonor." 

[49] 



> STORY OF RAMONA * 

The statements of Senora de Coronel, Mrs. 
Jackson's most intimate friend in California, 
and of Mr. Sandham, her artist companion, 
must be accepted as conclusive proof that Mrs. 
Jackson did, before departing from California 
in 1883, conceive and announce the writing of 
a book which would contain the facts of the 
inhuman treatment of the Mission Indians by 
the white man, and to clothe the story with 
romance. 

Mrs. Jackson desired to write the story of 
the Mission Indians while in Southern Califor- 
nia, in the atmosphere of the Coronel home, 
and within easy reach of reinforcing material; 
but fate forbade it. The work was scarcely 
begun when events dictated a different plan, 
and a temporary suspension of the writing. 
She realized that unless the Government could 
be prevailed upon to extend speedy relief to 
the Indians great suffering would ensue, and 
she hastened to Washington to lay the whole 
matter before the President and Congress. 
She was fortified with reports of officials and 
civilians, with statements of influential people 
of all stations, the material facts verified under 
oath, and was in every way equipped for an 
effective campaign. She successfully appealed 
to some of the most prominent men in public 

[50] 




RAMONA LUBO WEEPING AT THE GRAVE OF HER 
HUSBAND, JUAN DIEGO, CAHUILLA 




THE BELLS A\D CROSS AT CAMULOS, 
NEAR THE CHAPEL 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA t 

life at the time, including Senator Henry M. 
Teller of Colorado, and finally prevailed upon 
the Administration to send out a commission 
to see what could be done. 

Reforms in the policy of the Indian bureau 
soon followed, and within a twelvemonth she 
had the satisfaction of securing the passage of 
a law granting land in severalty, together with 
implements for its cultivation, to such Indians 
as would give up their tribal relations. The 
Indian Rights Association seconded her every 
effort, also sending a commission to Southern 
California and doing effective work at Wash- 
ington. 

Before leaving Los Angeles, Mrs. Jackson, 
in conjunction with the Coronels, devised a 
somewhat ambitious plan for the institution at 
some place in Southern California of an in- 
dustrial school for the Indians, with the idea 
that many of those who had lost their homes 
might, with proper instruction, become self- 
sustaining. It was hoped that the Govern- 
ment would provide a suitable home for 
such an institution, vesting the title in the 
Indians, and this achieved, it was her pur- 
pose to raise the necessary funds for equip- 
ping it by private subscription and otherwise. 
Personally she contemplated devoting the 

[51] 



>. STORY OF RAMONA * 

royalties received from her books to this 
purpose. 

Her mission to Washington accomplished, 
she went to New York, finished " Ramona," 
and arranged for its publication. She then be- 
gan the preparation of five additional books, 
which she seems to have carried forward simul- 
taneously; but, on account of the fatal illness 
that attacked her, never completed any of 
them. 

In the midst of this labor of love she was 
forced to lay down her pen and return to Cali- 
fornia, her physician hoping but scarcely be- 
lieving that the change would prolong her 
life. She survived but a few months, passing 
away peacefully at San Francisco on the i2th 
of August, 1885. 

The details of her burial on the slopes of 
Cheyenne Mountain, under the shadow of 
Pike's Peak, and amidst scenes she loved so 
much, are familiar topics. 

In "California of the South" it is related 
that in June, 1887, an agent from Washington 
and several members of the Indian Rights 
Association from Los Angeles and Pasadena, 
had a conference with the Indian chiefs, or 
captains, as they were then called, at Pala 
Mission, to explain the provisions of the bill, 

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>, THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

which became a law through the efforts of 
Mrs. Jackson, providing for a division of the 
reservation lands among the Indians, giving 
to each one in his individual right one hundred 
and sixty acres. Pala Mission is twelve miles 
from Temecula, where the agent and others 
went on the California Central Railroad. 

The meeting is thus described : " At the date 
of this conference, the apricots and peaches 
were just ripe, and the orchards were radiant 
with luscious fruit, that bent many of the 
boughs almost to the ground. Early on the 
morning of the conference the Indian chiefs 
began coming in from the various reservations, 
the majority on horseback, others in spring- 
wagons, but all well dressed in the American 
style. There were captains and generals, quite 
a number of whom spoke English, Spanish and 
three or four Indian dialects fluently. 

" There were among them several who might 
have been Alessandros, but no Ramonas. The 
agent mounted a step of the old Mission, and 
the Indians gathered anxiously around. Each 
one had hat in hand, and they all stood there 
in the hot sun, with bared heads, watching the 
agent closely as he spoke, and then listening 
attentively to the Hon. A. F. Coronel, of Los 
Angeles, as he interpreted the agent's remarks. 

[53] 



Jt TORY OF RAMONA * 

There were in this audience some noble faces, 
to whom the term ' noble red man ' could be 
fittingly applied. 

" One noticeable feature was their serious 
earnestness. They all remembered Mrs. Jack- 
son, who made prolonged visits among them; 
and when the agent told them that he had 
promised Mrs. Jackson on her death-bed that 
he would go on with her work, they were vis- 
ibly affected. 

" Mrs. Jackson's name is familiar to almost 
every human being in Southern California, 
from the little three-year-old tot, who has her 
choice juvenile stories read to him, to the aged 
grandmother who sheds tears of sympathy for 
Ramona." 



[54] 



CHAPTER VI 
DON ANTONIO FRANCISCO DE CORONEL 

AIOTHER generation has come on the 
stage since Don Antonio de Coronel, the 
close and helpful friend to Mrs. Jack- 
son, gave up, at the behest of commerce, the 
picturesque home in the orange grove which 
had sheltered him and his since 1834. The 
troubled Mission Indian can no more find it or 
him. After the partition of the rancho he 
built a handsome modern residence at the cor- 
ner of Central Avenue and Seventh Street, Los 
Angeles, overlooking the old tract, and there, 
in the companionship of his noble wife, he 
spent the remainder of his days, dying in 1894. 
Helen Hunt Jackson visited the Don and 
Dona Mariana in 1884, a few months before 
her death, and there a delegation of Mission 
Indian women brought to their benefactress, as 
a token of their love, a beautiful white linen 
morning robe, marvelously wrought by their 
own hands, with the drawn work, for which 
they are famous, accentuating the entire front. 
Sefiora de Coronel describes the garment as the 

[55] 



>. THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

most elaborate and exquisite she had ever seen, 
and calculates that in the production of it 
months of patient and artistic labor of many 
persons must have been expended. 

To the new home was removed the collec- 
tion of California antiquities which Don An- 
tonio had been fifty years in gathering, and 
which has been pronounced unique and the 
most interesting of any on the coast. Califor- 
nia had repeatedly sought to acquire this col- 
lection for the exhibit of the State Historical 
Society, and $30,000 had been offered for it; 
but this and all other offers were declined, 
since it had been Dona Mariana's purpose, ever 
since the death of her husband, to give the 
precious relics to the city. They were deliv- 
ered into the care and custody of the Chamber 
of Commerce of Los Angeles, where they are 
now displayed, filling entirely one large apart- 
ment. 

Photographs, sketches and paintings of the 
old hacienda survive in the Coronel section of 
the Chamber of Commerce exhibit, and will be 
viewed with interest and delight by genera- 
tions yet to come. They give strong hints of 
the gentle life beneath its expansive eaves in 
the long ago, when Don Antonio was the 
Indians' padre and every man's friend, the 

[56! 



y, THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

gates of his castle ever opening inward to all 
comers, his hospitality known from San Diego 
to Siskiyou. 

The figures depicted in some of these views, 
those of the old Don and his wholesome, hand- 
some wife, and their native dependents, all 
drawn from life and perpetuated in oil, will 
serve to recall not only their charming per- 
sonalities, but, as well, the gorgeous costuming 
of that early era on this coast, the chief events 
of which are rapidly mingling with tradition. 

Don Antonio de Coronel was ever the true 
and faithful friend of the Indians. They 
trusted him implicitly, and sought him for ad- 
vice and assistance in all their troubles. 
Among his last words to his faithful wife was 
this request: "Mariana, when I am dead and 
gone, be kind to the Indians. Never turn one 
away without food." 

Chosen as the bearer of captured American 
flags to the Mexican capital, Don Antonio was 
chased all over this country by the soldiers of 
General Kearney, who was determined that the 
flags should not be sent. Dead or alive, he 
must be captured, and every inducement was 
offered the Indians to assist in taking him. 

General Kearney promised the Indians that 
every foot of land taken from them should be 

[57] 



+ THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA t 

restored if only they would deliver up Don 
Antonio to him. But he had been shrewd 
enough to dispatch the flags to Mexico by 
another person, one who would never be sus- 
pected of being the bearer. Naturally, how- 
ever, he did not want to fall into the hands of 
the Americans. He had other things to do. 
Upon one occasion a troop of horsemen, under 
the immediate command of General Kearney, 
chased him directly to an Indian village; but 
none of the chiefs knew anything about him, 
of course. They told him of the offer of Gen- 
eral Kearney, but assured him they never would 
give him up. 

Little time was to be lost, and while Kearney 
was parleying with some of the captains, an- 
other rushed Don Antonio out into the cactus 
patch near by, and beating down the bushes as 
best he could, pushed Don Antonio beneath 
them, that he might not be seen, so long as he 
remained in a crouching position. It was a 
painful experience he endured, lasting nearly 
the night through; and when the troopers left, 
about daylight, he came out a most pitiful sight, 
his clothing almost stripped from his body, 
and bleeding at every pore. He was in such 
a position during all those painful hours that 
he could not move without encountering the 



^ THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

thorns of the cactus. But the Don's life was 
saved, Indian fidelity was vindicated, and the 
American flags reached Chapultepec, where 
they can be seen to-day by the curious. 

In " Glimpses of California and the Mis- 
sions" Mrs. Jackson gives this sketch of Don 
Antonio de Coronel: 

" Don Antonio speaks little English; but the 
Senora knows just enough of the language 
to make her use of it delicious, as she trans- 
lates for her husband. It is an entrancing 
sight to watch his dark, weather-beaten face, 
full of lightning changes as he pours out tor- 
rents of his nervous, eloquent Spanish speech; 
watching his wife intently, hearkening to each 
word she uses, sometimes interrupting her 
urgently with, ' No, no; that is not it/ for he 
well understands the tongue he cannot or will 
not use for himself. He is sixty-five years of 
age, but he is young; the best waltzer in Los 
Angeles to-day; his eye keen, his blood fiery 
quick; his memory like a burning-glass bring- 
ing into sharp light and focus a half-century 
as if it were a yesterday. Full of sentiment, of 
an intense and poetic nature, he looks back to 
the lost empire of his race and people on the 
California shores with a sorrow far too proud 
for any antagonisms or complaints. He recog- 

[59] 



>. STORY OF RAMONA * 

nizcs the incxorableness of the laws under 
whose workings his nation is slowly, surely 
giving place to one more representative of the 
age. Intellectually he is in sympathy with 
progress, with reform, with civilization at its 
utmost; he would not have had them stayed or 
changed, because his people could not keep up 
and were not ready. But his heart is none the 
less saddened and lonely. 

" This is probably the position and point 
of view of most cultivated Mexican men of his 
age. The suffering involved in it is inevitable. 
It is part of the great, unreckoned price which 
must always be paid for the gain the world 
gets when the young and strong supersede the 
old and weak. 

"A sunny little southeast corner room in 
Don Antonio's house is full of the relics of the 
time when he and his father were foremost 
representatives of ideas and progress in the 
City of the Angels, and taught the first school 
that was kept in the place. This was nearly 
a half-century ago. On the walls of the room 
still hang maps and charts which they used; 
and carefully preserved, with the tender rever- 
ence of which only poetic natures are capable, 
are still to be seen there the old atlases, primers, 
catechisms, grammars, reading-books, which 

[60] 



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DON ANTONIO DE CORONEL SINGING TO HIS WIFE, 
MARIANA. (Permission of Miss Annie B. Picker, Pasadena.) 

" Don Antonio would take up his guitar, and, in a voice still 
sympathetic and full of melody, sing an old Spanish love-song. 
Never * * * in his most ardent youth could his eyes have gazed 
on his fair sweetheart's face with a look of greater devotion 
than that with which they now rest on the noble, expressive 
countenance of his wife." (Mrs. Jackson in "Glimpses of Cali- 
fornia and the Missions.") 



>, THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

meant toil and trouble to the merry, ignorant 
people of that time." 

Mrs. Jackson then proceeds to relate several 
stories of the experiences of Don Antonio, 
after which she continues: 

" Sitting in the little corner room, looking 
out through the open door on the gay garden 
and breathing its spring air, gay even in mid- 
winter, and as spicy then as the gardens of 
other lands are in June, I spent many an after- 
noon listening to such tales as this. Sunset al- 
ways came long before its time, it seemed, on 
these days. 

" Occasionally, at the last moment, Don An- 
tonio would take up his guitar, and, in a voice 
still sympathetic and full of melody, sing an 
old Spanish love-song, brought to his mind by 
thus living over the events of his youth. 
Never, however, in his most ardent youth, 
could his eyes have gazed on his fairest sweet- 
heart's face with a look of greater devotion than 
that with which they now rest on the noble, 
expressive countenance of his wife, as he sings 
the ancient and tender strains. Of one of them 
I once won from her, amid laughs and blushes, 
a few words of translation: 

" ' Let us hear the sweet echo 

Of your sweet voice that charms me. 

[61] 



* THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

The one that truly loves you, 
He says he wishes to love; 
That the one who with ardent love adores you, 
Will sacrifice himself for you. 

Do not deprive me, 

Owner of me, 
Of that sweet echo 
Of your sweet voice that charms me/ 

" Near the western end of Don Antonio's 
porch is an orange tree, on which were hang- 
ing at this time twenty-five hundred oranges, 
ripe and golden among the glossy leaves. Un- 
der this tree my carriage always waited for 
me. The Senora never allowed me to depart 
without bringing to me, in the carriage, fare- 
well gifts of flowers and fruit; clusters of 
grapes, dried and fresh; great boughs full of 
oranges, more than I could lift. As I drove 
away thus, my lap filled with bloom and golden 
fruit, canopies of golden fruit over my head, I 
said to myself often : ' Fables are prophecies. 
The Hesperides have come true.' " 



CHAPTER VII 

MRS. JACKSON'S HOME AT COLORADO SPRINGS- 
INDIAN ENVIRONMENTS THE UTES AND 
OTHER TRIBES A FESTIVAL IN HER HONOR 

WRITERS without number have time 
and again sought for the inspiration 
of " Ramona " in a score or more of 
historical facts, incidents and circumstances, 
from the pitiful story of the eviction of the Pon- 
cas to the tearful episode at Temecula, stretch- 
ing across the continent and covering half a cen- 
tury of time. But Helen Hunt Jackson needed 
none of these. She knew the whole sorrowful 
story by heart, and from her own windows in 
her modernized tepee at the corner of Kiowa 
and Comanche streets, in Colorado Springs, she 
could have drawn sufficient inspiration for a 
dozen stories. And it is not a little significant 
that her own home site should have been on 
a street corner named for two tribes that re- 
garded Manitou as a shrine, and annually 
visited it to purify their sin-sick souls and 
cleanse their bodies. 

From the spacious corner apartment, fur- 
Leal 



Jt THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA >t 

nished and beautified with articles from her 
New England home, transplanted to the banks 
of the Fountaine, every vestige of modern fur- 
nishings had been removed. Floor and wall 
coverings, originally soft rugs from Turkey 
and Arabia, and tapestries from the banks of 
the Seine, had given place to bright colored 
Navajo blankets and flaming Arapahoe and 
Cheyenne scrapes from Arizona and New 
Mexico. Dainty specimens of the plastic art 
from the Sevres works at Paris or the royal 
plant at Dresden had yielded to the ruder, but 
perhaps not less spiritual and intellectual crea- 
tions of the Hopi Indians of Santa Fe. Arab 
curiosities from the kiosks of Cairo, and French 
curios from the shops of the Palais Royal had 
been taken away, that room might be found 
for Apache bows and arrows and Sioux war- 
clubs, for samples of those exquisitely wrought 
baskets of the Mission Indians of California, 
and unique bits of pottery from the Yaquis of 
Sonora. 

Place had been found, space abundantly con- 
spicuous too, for specimens of drawn work, for 
which the tribal women of Saboba were and 
yet are particularly noted. The entire apart- 
ment bore an aspect of unmistakable, if un- 
intended, barbaric splendor. 

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DON ANTONIO DE COROXF.L IN' HIS ORATORY 

The crucifix was his mother's and he died with it in his hands. 
The penitential bracelet, cilicio, was on the arm of Father Zal- 
videa, San Gabriel Mission, when the latter died. 



+ STORY OF RAMONA & 

There were in the large collection no baskets 
made by Ramona; because there never was a 
Ramona, save in the mind of the gifted author, 
nor did she ever pretend that there was. 

Every article, however, had for its owner 
a particular language, and each to her told a 
story peculiarly its own. There was not an 
item visible that to her lacked deep significance. 
Few, if any, of the stories they told were bright 
or cheerful. Most of them were written in 
blood, and told of the anguish of a race run 
to earth. Each was treasured for the message 
it bore of gratitude, simple yet deeply sincere, 
for acts instinct with love and sympathy. 

Long before the ice-mantled crest of Pike's 
Peak became a landmark for the argonaut in his 
cross-continent trek to the gold-lined shores of 
Cherry Creek it served another and broader 
purpose. To the native Indian tribes of all 
the vast stretches of mountain and plain radi- 
ating from it in all directions it indicated the 
location of both sanitarium and sanctuary, at 
the base of those titanic elevations since known 
to the white man as Pike's Peak, Cameron's 
Cone and Cheyenne Mountain. 

The great Ute Iron Spring and its near 
neighbor, the Cheyenne Soda Spring, com- 
panioned by numerous other bubbling springs 

[65] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA >. 

without hint of mineral content, had been 
sought by the afflicted of all the tribes for ages, 
and had come to be regarded as possessing 
supernatural curative powers. 

These really marvelous springs nestle here 
and there amidst the rocks and crags and scrub 
oaks in the sylvan nook at the base of Pike's 
Peak. They once constituted the red man's 
sanitarium, belonging to all alike, with no at- 
tempt to monopolize their virtues for this tribe 
or that the gift of the gods to all who sought 
relief from physical ills by drinking of or bath- 
ing in their wondrous waters. 

Scarce a mile away to the eastward was the 
red man's sanctuary, the Garden of the Gods, 
where they annually gathered to perform their 
peculiarly weird religious ceremonies. This 
interesting bit of nature, in its most freakish 
mood, embraces four square miles in the charm- 
ing valley of the Fountaine Que Bouille. Its 
attractions are most unique, consisting of an 
immense and varied collection of eroded sand- 
stone rocks, supposedly formed by the winds, 
into strange figures and grotesque shapes, 
resembling ruined temples, forts and castles, 
forms of birds, insects, animals and even of 
human beings. Conspicuous among these is a 
particular rock of gigantic proportions and 

[66] 



*t THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

peculiar formation, pointed out to visitors as the 
one formerly worshiped by the Indians as the 
Great Manitou God giving appropriate name 
to the locality. 

Stretching for miles to the southward along 
the Front Range is the sweeping slope of Chey- 
enne Mountain, its face beautified here and 
there by numerous waterfalls, ever dancing in 
the golden sunlight from grassy summit to 
carpeted feet. These mingle in a common out- 
let, which winds its way through the broad 
valley and loses itself in the arroyos below. 
This wondrously beautiful stream of purest 
mountain water, eternally refreshed from the 
spotless snow deposits of the upper altitudes, 
and more or less of a cataract in the rainy sea- 
son, rejoices in the poetic title of Fountaine 
Que Bouille. 

Beginning at the Garden of the Gods, and 
extending a distance of forty miles to the west- 
ward, is a typical mountain trail, known far 
and wide as Ute Pass. Winding its tortuous 
way over the Front Range, its greatest eleva- 
tion exceeding 12,000 feet, it leads into the 
South Park, one of the three great natural 
mountain depressions into which the State of 
Colorado is divided, sixty miles from north to 
south, perhaps thirty to forty from east to 

[67] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA Jt 

west, and formerly a great rendezvous for buf- 
falo, elk, deer and antelope the Indians' hunt- 
ing ground. 

Quite as interesting and remarkable as the 
natural features already mentioned may be 
added Monument Park, Glen Eyrie, Cave of 
the Winds and a hundred others, not less cap- 
tivating to the eye or rendered less interesting 
by reason of Indian legend that yet retains hold 
upon the imagination, although the sway of 
the pale face has been complete for well nigh 
half a century. 

Necessarily these are here dismissed with a 
passing word, the main object of their brief 
mention being achieved in picturing the en- 
vironment selected by Helen Hunt Jackson 
for her home, an environment distinctively ab- 
original. True, the last Indian had long been 
driven from his sanitarium and his sanctuary 
when Mrs. Jackson located at Colorado 
Springs and took up her life's work there; but 
natural objects, names, history and legends 
remained, as ever they will. Every influence 
suggested the past and its saddening story of 
broken treaties, of forcible evictions, of wan- 
tonly cruel, unchristian, unmerciful treatment 
of the red man, primary owner of it all. 

From this environment Mrs. Jackson looked 



t THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

out of windows and across bits of landscape, 
not so long before the sole possession of the 
Indian, now Indian in name only. Far back 
had the original possessor been driven, leaving 
only legendary title upon particular landmarks. 
In the distance was Cheyenne Mountain, but 
the Indian tepee was upon its wooded slopes 
no longer. Winding up over the giant moun- 
tain in narrow, tortuous course, was Ute Pass, 
marking the weary way taken by sad-faced 
Utes when finally driven from the great spring 
where they and their forefathers for genera- 
tions past had gathered to seek surcease from 
pain in its curative waters. In the foreground 
was the Garden of the Gods, each sculptured 
monument full of the deepest significance to 
Indian mind and heart, surcharged, as the pale 
face may not begin to realize, with spiritual 
thoughts and inspirations. 

Glen Eyrie would ever remain dear to them 
as the home of the eagle, perched as it was 
almost beyond rifle range in the rocky clefts 
above, and yet undisturbed. There also was 
the singular " Gateway " to the Garden of the 
Gods, also full of significance to the aborigines 
two lofty spires pointing heavenward; one 
of the brightest red sandstone, the other of the 
purest white limestone. There were the Seven 

[69! 



> STORY OF RAMONA *. 

Falls, Bridal Veil Falls, the pearly Fountaine 
Que Bouille, all differently named by the red 
man before white occupation, but losing noth- 
ing of significance by change in nomenclature. 
These and a hundred other as unique monu- 
ments have been left to mark the " happy 
hunting grounds " of the long ago. 

The Indians themselves had first been forced 
back of the Front Range into the great South 
Park, and would have been content to remain 
there; but the white man quickly followed, 
uncovered gold along the banks of Chicago 
Creek and it no longer remained a fit place 
for the Indian; for the big game went out 
with the coming in of the whites. Farther 
back the original possessor must go and seek 
sustenance at the head waters of the Arkansas. 
There, too, the white man followed, again dis- 
covering fabulous auriferous wealth in the 
sands of California Gulch; and again the red 
man must go. Ever backward must he move; 
away from the great game preserves, away 
from abundant water supply, away from the 
gold and silver deposits. 

Over the main range was he now forced, 
where buffalo were not, and where it then was 
believed nothing more could be found to excite 

the white man's cupidity; but the red face was 

[70) 




OF RAMONA 



scarcely located there when mineral springs 
larger and more valuable than those at Mani- 
tou were found, where coal veins greater than 
the entire superficial area of Pennsylvania were 
uncovered, where the great silver ledge at 
Aspen was located. 

It was not long before the Government was 
importuned again to force the Indian back 
upon a new frontier, and a wretched place was 
found for him amidst the wastes of North- 
western Utah. There the Uintah reservation 
was established, and the trek across another 
range of mountains directed from Washington. 
But before the order for removal came the 
greedy white man had forced himself upon the 
Indian's new reservation and taken possession. 

The chairman of the Senate Committee on 
Indian Affairs, Mr. Dawes of Massachusetts, 
from his seat in the Senate, about this time, 
read to the astonished senators a "proclama- 
tion," printed on cloth and tacked on the trees 
all over the Grand River Reservation, announc- 
ing that the Government, by proposing to give 
the land to the Indians, had parted with its 
title, and that, inasmuch as "the under- 
signed," four audacious adventurers, of whom 
one of the authors of this volume was one, 
announced that the Indian title would not be 

71] 



* STORY OF RAMONA * 

recognized, and that anybody wanting anything 
on the reservation must see them! These four 
men had located the town-site of Glenwood, the 
valuable springs adjacent, and about everything 
else in sight, assigned their " holdings " to an 
incorporated company, and begun the sale of 
lots and mines. All this before the Indians 
had so much as been consulted as to whether 
they would again consent to move on. 

Since the death of Mrs. Jackson and her 
interment upon the slopes of Cheyenne Moun- 
tain, the people of Colorado Springs and Mani- 
tou have taken a deep and absorbing interest 
in commemorating her work, as well as per- 
petuating the legendary Indian history of what 
has come to be known as the " Pike's Peak Re- 
gion." In 1912 an organization was formed 
for the purpose of giving an annual celebra- 
tion or carnival, distinctively Indian in all its 
features. That the fullest recognition of this 
might be given to the event it is called " Shan 
Kive" (Indian for fete or carnival, and pro- 
nounced " Shawn Keedie "). 
K At the first Shan Kive, in the autumn of 
1912, the Ute Pass was formally dedicated. 
Various Indian dances were indulged in, as well 
as Indian pony races in costume, and all of 
the sports and games of the several tribes of 




GATEWAY TO THE GARDEN OF THE GODS 



*t THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

red men who originally owned and inhabited 
that section, constituted interesting and pleas- 
ing features of the occasion. Films were made 
of all the principal events, and these have been 
exhibited in all sections of the country. 

Primarily intended to exploit the passing 
race of red men, and to commemorate the 
great work of "the first lady of Colorado 
Springs," Helen Hunt Jackson, the event 
sprang into instant favor. It now occurs an- 
nually the first week in September, when Colo- 
rado's wonderful flora is at its best, and when 
the weather in the sun-kissed city is reliably 
climatic perfection. 

The annual celebration of Shan Kive doubt- 
less will serve for many generations, if not 
for all time, to keep fresh in the minds and 
hearts of the people the almost sublime work 
of Helen Hunt Jackson. 



[73] 



CHAPTER VIII 

INVESTIGATING THE MISSION INDIANS THE 
MEEKER TRAGEDY " RAMONA " AND "UNCLE 
TOM'S CABIN " 

/ \HE disheartened little woman, Mrs. Jack- 
son, in her modernized tepee at Colo- 
^ rado Springs, had written " A Century 
of Dishonor," and was at that time wonder- 
ing why it had failed to stir a Christian na- 
tion to action. She was brooding over what 
seemed to be the failure of its mission. She 
had repeatedly been to the capital of the na- 
tion, and there had met with a reception none 
too cordial. She was planning the story of 
"Ramona," little realizing what a great work 
she was undertaking. Physically she was 
worn to a frazzle. Mentally she was well-nigh 
distracted. She had but recently completed a 
tour of Southern California, using carriage, 
wagon and burros, enduring all manner of 
hardships, since in all the vast empire trav- 
ersed there were no suitable accommodations 
for a lady of her age, habits of life and refine- 
ment. 



t THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

In this mission she had taken nothing for 
granted. Wherever there were known to be 
gathered half a dozen Indians, there she re- 
paired, to look into their condition and to see 
for herself what might be done for their im- 
mediate needs. Thus in turn she was driven 
to Saboba, Cahuilla, Warner's Ranch, San 
Ysidro, Los Coyotes, San Ysabel, Mesa 
Grande, Capitan Grande, Sequan, Conejos, 
Pala, Rincon, Pauma, San Pasquale, La Jolla, 
Pechanga, San Gorgonio, Camulos, Temecula, 
Santa Barbara, San Diego, the Desert Reserva- 
tion and other places. 

It should be remembered that the Indian 
had not in every instance accorded yielding 
obedience to the white man's behest to " move 
on." Occasionally he had demurred to the 
unreasonable demands made upon him. Upon 
a few occasions, indeed, he had gone upon the 
warpath and taken a few scalps. But these 
occasions were rare, and all told would scarce 
fill a page of history. On the other hand, the 
story of the wrongs inflicted upon his people 
by the whites would crowd many volumes to 
repletion. Sand Creek and like stories of the 
butcheries of Indians constitute the bloodiest 
pages of American border narrative. Unfor- 
tunately for Mrs. Jackson, the Northern Utes 

[75] 



>. THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

had, about this time, rebelled against the Gov- 
ernment, murdered Agent Meeker and car- 
ried his wife, daughter Josephine and a com- 
panion, Mrs. Price, into the fastnesses of the 
mountains, holding them as hostages. 

This incident gave the red man's enemies 
an unusual opportunity to demand the com- 
plete wiping out of Chief Ouray's band, al- 
though that brave and his immediate follow- 
ers had always distinguished themselves as 
the friends of the whites. It counted for little 
that all three women are said to have become 
the willing consorts of braves of the Ute 
tribe; that Josephine Meeker had fairly to be 
torn away from her dusky lover, Chief Per- 
sune; that Mrs. Price reluctantly gave up 
Chief Jack, and that Mrs. Meeker was not 
willingly restored to her friends in Colorado. 
Such reports were currently circulated and gen- 
erally credited. Mrs. Jackson, alone of all the 
people of Colorado, was left to defend the acts 
of the Utes, to the story of the provocation 
for which none but she willingly would 
listen. 

Numerous writers have undertaken to com- 
pare the work of Mrs. Jackson with that of 
Harriet Beecher Stowe, but with very indif- 
ferent success. The works of the two gifted 

[76] 



^ THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

authors possibly may be contrasted, but not 
well compared. For " Uncle Tom's Cabin," as 
all well informed persons must be aware, there 
was a ready-made public sentiment. For 
nearly a century human slavery had been a 
living and a burning issue. The Anti-Slavery 
Society had labored long and effectively in 
preparing the public for such a novel as finally 
came from the inspired pen of Mrs. Stowe. 
There long had been a regularly established 
and securely founded organization in every 
Northern State, and in not a few there was 
an " underground railway " prepared for the 
fleeing bondmen. 

Mrs. Stowe's biographer, her own son, says 
of the immediate success of " Uncle Tom's 
Cabin": "Neither she nor her husband had 
the remotest idea of the unique power and 
interest of the story that was being written. 
Nor, indeed, did it dawn upon either of them 
until after the publication of the first edition 
in book form. Professor Stowe was a very 
emotional man, and was accustomed to water 
his wife's literary efforts liberally with his 
tears; so the fact that he had wept over the 
bits of brown paper, upon which the first chap- 
ter was written, had for them no unusual por- 
tent. As to pecuniary gain, he often ex- 

[77] 



> STORY OF RAMONA * 

pressed the hope that she would make enough 
by the story to buy a new silk dress! " 

Although the public mind and heart were 
prepared for such a publication, it seems that 
Mrs. Stowe felt impelled to write to Fred 
Douglass, calling his attention to the fact that 
it was appearing as a serial in the " National 
Era." "Uncle Tom's Cabin" was written at 
various places, at Brunswick, Maine, and at 
Boston and Andover; and although announced 
to run but three months, it was not completed 
for thirteen months, appearing in book form 
some weeks thereafter. Ten thousand copies 
were sold within a few days, and over three 
hundred thousand within a year, and eight 
power presses running day and night were 
barely able to keep pace with the demand for 
it. It was read everywhere, apparently, and 
by everybody; and the author soon began to 
hear echoes of sympathy from all over the 
land. The indignation, the pity, the distress, 
that had long weighed upon her soul seemed 
to pass off from her and into the readers of 
the book. 

So successful had the book been that Mrs. 
Stowe at once set herself to the task of writ- 
ing "The Key to Uncle Tom's Cabin," fol- 
lowed by "Dred," all upon the same theme, 

[78] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

and all of these several works were trans- 
lated into nearly every tongue and were widely 
read the world over. The fame of the author 
became so great that she felt compelled, after 
the publication of "The Key" and " Dred," 
to accept the invitation of friends of the cause 
of emancipation in England to visit that coun- 
try as their guest. This she did, extending 
her visits to France, Germany and Switzer- 
land, everywhere received as a world char- 
acter to be honored and feted, not alone by 
the poor and the lowly, but as well by royalty 
itself. 

But a far different sentiment awaited the 
coming of "Ramona." It was unlocked for 
and unwanted. It was most indifferently re- 
ceived. Nowhere was there sympathy for 
"H. H." or "her Indians." Mrs. Jackson's 
nearest neighbors were yet not proselytes to 
her mission. There was not a newspaper in 
Colorado that dared to champion her cause; 
not a man in public life who cared to assert 
that reason and justice and logic were on her 
side. 

Friendly as the writer for years had been 
with Mrs. Jackson, a frequent and as he be- 
lieves always a welcome visitor to her home, 
he yet recalls, with the deepest regret and 

[79] 



> STORY OF RAMONA * 

remorse and mortification, the fact that he 
never employed the instrumentalities at hand 
to defend the woman and her work, save in a 
literary way and for a literary reason. The 
" Leadville Chronicle " and " Leadville Herald- 
Democrat," which he owned and edited at the 
time, could have been his powerful weapons 
in her defense. His conversion came long 
after her death, the result of a re-reading of 
her many works upon the Indian question and 
a deeper and more analytical study of her 
noble purpose. 

Coming late in life though it does, there 
is now nourished a sincere hope that some 
amends may be made for earlier mistakes and 
fatal errors of immature judgment. 

Before coming to California Mrs. Jackson 
was aflame with sympathy for the Mission 
Indians. January 17, 1880, she thus wrote 
to one of her intimate friends : " I think I feel 
as you must have felt in the old Abolition 
days. I cannot think of anything else from 
night to morning and from morning to night. 
... I believe the time is drawing near for 
a great change in our policy toward the In- 
dian. In some respects, it seems to me, he is 
really worse off than the slaves. They did 
have, in the majority of cases, good houses, 

[80] 




ARCADE ENTRANCE TO CHAPEL, CAMULOS 



^ THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

and they were not much more arbitrarily con- 
trolled than the Indian is by the agent on a 
reservation. He can order a corporal's guard 
to fire on an Indian at any time he sees fit. 
He is ' duly empowered by the Government/ ' 

On September 4, 1884, Mrs. Jackson thus 
wrote Sefior and Sefiora de Coronel : " I some- 
times wonder that the Lord does not rain fire 
and brimstone on this land, to punish us for 
our cruelty to these unfortunate Indians." 

Four days before her death Mrs. Jackson 
wrote the following letter to the President of 
the United States: 

To Grover Cleveland, 

President of the United States. 
Dear Sir, 

From my death-bed I send you a message 
of heartfelt thanks for what you have already 
done for the Indians. I ask you to read my 
" Century of Dishonor." I am dying happier 
for the belief that it is your hand that is 
destined to strike the first steady blow toward 
lifting this burden of infamy from our coun- 
try, and righting the wrongs of the Indian 
race. 

With respect and gratitude, 

Helen Jackson. 

[81] 



CHAPTER IX 

PUBLICATION OF REPORT UPON THE INDIANS 
AN INDIAN SCHOOL MRS. JACKSON'S BURIAL 
PLACE PERSONAL INTERVIEW PREPARING 
FOR "RAMONA" 

THE last visit of the writer to Helen 
Hunt Jackson's home in Colorado 
Springs was in the summer of 1883. 
It was in company with the late Ben Steele, 
the gifted editor of the "Gazette" of that 
city, also a warm personal friend of Mrs. 
Jackson, yet one who, for obvious reasons, 
withheld from her that public encouragement 
so freely extended in his personal intercourse. 
The initial edition of " A Century of Dishonor " 
had been exhausted, and the details of the pub- 
lication of another were quite generally dis- 
cussed at this informal gathering. 

In July, 1882, Mrs. Jackson had been com- 
missioned by the Secretary of the Interior, to- 
gether with Mr. Abbot Kinney, of Los 
Angeles, to visit and report upon the condi- 
tion of the Mission Indians of California. 
This recognition by the Government had been 

[82] 



t STORY OF RAMONA * 

highly gratifying to her and she appeared to 
be deeply appreciative of the assistance ren- 
dered her by Mr. Kinney. In subsequent cor- 
respondence with him he had invariably ad- 
dressed her as " General," a circumstance 
which appealed strongly to her sense of humor. 
She once wrote that one of her first, if not her, 
very first, resolutions in life was not to be " a 
woman with a hobby," and here she was being 
recognized everywhere as a woman with a 
very pronounced hobby, the Indians, and ad- 
dressed as " General " by a male companion 
in official life. 

The judgment of those present at this meet- 
ing was consulted as to whether it were bet- 
ter to print her report upon the Southern 
California Indians under separate cover, or 
as an appendix to another edition of " A Cen- 
tury of Dishonor," at that time deemed im- 
perative. Because of the relative brevity of 
the joint report upon the condition and needs 
of the Mission Indians, it was the consensus 
of opinion of those present that it would be 
more likely to secure a larger reading by go- 
ing out as a part of a work that already had 
passed to a second edition, and that course 
was agreed upon. But at the same time she 
announced that she intended writing a novel 

[83] 



t STORY OF RAMONA * 

in which she would present the wretched story 
of the Mission Indians of California. 

It may be here remarked that Mrs. Jack- 
son was not so much displeased with the sale 
of the original edition of " A Century of Dis- 
honor " ; her disappointment related more to 
the apparent apathy with which it had been 
received by Senators, members of Congress 
and bureau officers having charge of Indian 
affairs. She had under consideration at the 
time a number of projects calling for govern- 
mental recognition and financial support, and 
doubtless was unduly impatient with the slow 
processes then in vogue. Her most ambitious 
scheme was the establishment, at some point 
in Southern California, of an industrial school 
for Mission Indian women. For this she de- 
sired the Government to donate a suitable 
site and deed it to the Indians. For its en- 
dowment she intended to devote all royalties 
received from the sale of her several books, in- 
cluding the one just begun, which developed 
into the great American novel, " Ramona." 
She looked to the Coronels to aid her in this 
great undertaking. They were to take charge 
of this institution. 

Mrs. Jackson was at this time an exceed- 
ingly busy woman. She was ever that, how- 

84] 



& THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA ^ 

ever, but her official and literary work was 
crowding her, and she complained that not 
as often as she desired, and as formerly had 
been her habit, had she been able to visit her 
favorite places in the mountains. Chief of these 
was Cheyenne Mountain and the numerous 
and beautiful waterfalls for which the locality 
always has been noted. One of these, and 
one of the most picturesque, has since been 
christened " Ramona Falls," for the lovely 
heroine of the romance. Her favorite, how- 
ever, was Seven Falls, one of the most beau- 
tiful and picturesque in America, the source of 
which, at that time, was reached by a series 
of rather steep wooden steps, just upon the 
edge of the foaming cascade. It was here, at 
the summit of the mountain crag, in a little 
grove of spruce trees and near the edge of a 
huge pile of volcanic rock, that Mrs. Jackson 
selected a burial place for herself. Her de- 
sires in this respect were strictly executed, and 
for a number of years she rested there, in the 
place she loved so much, under the shadows 
of Pike's Peak and within sound of the splash- 
ing waters of Seven Falls. 

Later, and for a reason not anticipated at 
the time of her interment, it became necessary 
to disinter the remains and rebury them at 

[85] 



^ STORY OF RAMONA > 

Evergreen Cemetery, Colorado Springs. A 
ranchman in Cheyenne Canon had taken ad- 
vantage of his title to the land upon which the 
grave was located to charge an admission fee 
to see it, and also reaped a considerable reve- 
nue from hiring to tourists a burro, once 
owned and used by Mrs. Jackson upon which 
to skirt the mountain side. 

This commercializing of the grave became 
so distasteful to the author's relatives and 
friends, in the course of time, as to make it 
imperative to remove the remains. They 
were taken away as quietly and unceremoni- 
ously as they had been laid there at her re- 
quest, and even the local papers were not 
advised of the incident for some time there- 
after. 

During the last visit of the writer to the 
home of Mrs. Jackson she related many inter- 
esting incidents of her official journey through 
the mountains of Southern California, its 
pleasing as well as its sorrowful phases. She 
spoke feelingly of the Coronels, and related in 
what manner they had been most helpful to 
her. It was at their suggestion and urgent 
insistence that Mrs. Jackson had paid a visit 
to Camulos ranch, and all that she said re- 
garding that visit led her hearers to believe 

[86] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

that the scene of the novel she had in hand 
was to be laid there. 

Notwithstanding her excessive modesty in 
referring to the work she had undertaken, it 
was not difficult to realize that it was her 
purpose to make it what since it has turned 
out to be, "the great American novel." Very 
naturally she preferred to talk about the work 
already done rather than to speculate upon 
future plans. The conversation was mainly 
in regard to " A Century of Dishonor," and 
the deep disappointment she felt that it had 
not produced that effect upon the national con- 
science which she had a right to expect. 

It is doubtful if an author ever before had 
taken such pains as had Mrs. Jackson to pre- 
pare for the production of "Ramona." She 
well knew, long in advance of its publication, 
that she was not to have a friendly reception 
for her work. She felt that public criticism 
would be merciless, and fully realized the im- 
portance of unquestioned correctness in every 
position taken. Her first step had been to 
thoroughly inform herself regarding the law, 
the ground work of human rights. She had 
read everything relating to the lives and char- 
acters, the public and private utterances, of 
such men as Garrison, Whittier, Lowell, 

[87] 



Jt THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

Phillips, Starr King, Lovejoy, Brown and all 
the other national leaders of the anti-slavery 
movement. She had read all the treaties with 
all the American Indian tribes of record, from 
that with the Delawares in 1620 down to the 
day and hour when it became necessary to 
close her narrative, analyzing the conditions 
and traversing the history of each, never fail- 
ing to disclose the almost uniform bad faith 
of the Government in carrying out solemn 
obligations entered into between a powerful 
people upon the one side and weak, dependent 
wards upon the other. She dug up and waded 
through hundreds of musty public documents, 
read thousands of pages of the " Congressional 
Record," and finally entered upon her great 
task with a full equipment of information per- 
tinent to the subject, a large part of which 
she found to her mortification was wholly un- 
known to the executive officers of the Govern- 
ment at the time. 



[88] 




BALCONY AT CAMULOS, 

From which Senora del Vallc was accustomed to watch for the 
coming of her husband down the valley. It presents a view of 
many miles. 



CHAPTER X 

THE CORONELS THE "REAL" RAMONA AND 
HER BASKETS THE INSPIRATION OF " RA- 
MONA "-CAMULOS RANCH AND ITS CUSTOMS 
THE RAMONA JEWELS 

MORE than a decade after this last con- 
versation with Helen Hunt Jackson it 
was the privilege of the writer to visit 
Southern California. His thoughts naturally 
were largely of his dead friend and her great 
work in behalf of the Mission Indians. He 
assumed that he would be accorded a cordial 
welcome at the home of Dona Mariana de Coro- 
nel, then a widow, and was not disappointed. 
She was not alone cordial, but communicative 
to a degree, and in that initial and in sub- 
sequent interviews a fund of most interesting 
and valuable information was disclosed. She 
regretted that so many fictions had arisen con- 
cerning " Ramona," and expressed a desire 
that someone should undertake to tell the true 
story. 

Some years ago one of the authors of this 
book prepared a short story upon " Ramona," 

[89] 



y, THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

in which the inspiration and creation of the 
romance were told, which was published in the 
" Out West " magazine. In this article the 
writer endeavored to give some of the real 
facts surrounding the story, and asserted that 
the characters of Alessandro and Ramona were 
fictitious. This declaration was not calculated 
to encourage the imposition on tourists by 
curio sellers in palming off baskets as having 
been made by the Ramona of Helen Hunt 
Jackson. 

The publication of this article was followed 
by the receipt of an extraordinarily large num- 
ber of letters from persons in various sections 
of the country, as well as in Europe, whose 
ideals had thus been hopelessly demolished. 
All protested that they had bought their 
Ramona-made baskets in good faith, treasured 
them sacredly, and each pronounced it a burn- 
ing shame that he or she should have been 
imposed upon by conscienceless traffickers, or 
that the writer should, at such a late day, 
attempt to discourage the popular belief in the 
existence of a real Ramona, and deny that she 
was still in the business of basket making on 
a large scale in some impossible cation down 
by the sea. 

The only comfort that could be extended 

[90] 



y, THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA ^ 

these unhappy correspondents was cheerfully 
given. It was not much, but it at least pos- 
sessed the quality of sincerity. It was de- 
clared by the writer that to his mind nothing 
could compensate for the exchange of the 
idealized Ramona, one of the most charming 
characters fiction has ever donated to the 
world of letters, for a squat Indian, with 
straight, coarse black hair, thick lips and high 
cheek bones, capable of sitting all day in a 
bamboo wickiup and contenting herself with 
the weaving of baskets, however beautiful in 
themselves or symbolic in their conception. 
At all events, he suggested that a little reflec- 
tion would have saved these unfortunate in- 
vestors much of their sentiment and some of 
their money. 

Inasmuch as the time of the story, by com- 
parison of records and incidents, must have been 
between 1840 and 1880, the life of the " real " 
Ramona could hardly have been extended, 
even by the liberal use of Aunt Ri's herb decoc- 
tions, down to the twentieth century. And 
again, if the " real " Ramona were indeed an 
Indian, and had given her undivided time and 
talents to the creation of baskets, it would 
not have been possible, within the space of one 
short life, to produce the large number that 

[90 



Jt THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA t 

have been purchased for the decoration of the 
homes of Ramona-lovers all over the country, 
and that yet comprise so large a proportion of 
the stock of curio stores all over Ramonaland, 
from Monterey to San Diego. 

The writer came to California with the prin- 
cipal facts regarding the inspiration, progress 
and completion of the romance thoroughly 
grounded in his mind. Mrs. Jackson had in 
substance told him that the Coronels had in- 
spired the story, had aided immensely in the 
task of gathering material for it, and finally 
had insisted that she should visit Camulos 
ranch to secure the necessary local color. 
Neither Guajome, which she had several times 
visited, nor any other Southern California ranch 
was referred to by her in connection with the 
plot then in her mind for the romance of 
" Ramona." 

Dona Mariana de Coronel confirmed the 
conviction already entertained regarding the 
chief incidents, and urged a personal visit to 
Camulos as almost essential to a correct under- 
standing of all the incidents of the plot. 

This latter suggestion was acted upon with- 
out unnecessary loss of time. So often had 
the hospitality of the del Valle household 
been imposed upon by curiosity-seekers and 

[92] 



>, THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

relic-hunters that a favorable introduction was 
a thing to be prized. This the writer pro- 
cured through the long acquaintance and close 
intimacy of his wife with the family of Senator 
del Valle of Los Angeles, and a most delight- 
ful day was spent within the classic precincts 
of the real home of the only Ramona that ever 
existed, the character idealized from the per- 
sons of Blanca Yndart and Guadalupe, the 
little Indian ward of Dona Ysabel del Valle, 
as heretofore stated. 

The writer's wife, some time previously, had 
spent an entire week as a guest at the ranch, 
during which she had opportunity to thor- 
oughly familiarize herself with animate and in- 
animate features of the place. Members of the 
del Valle family had pointed out the original 
boundaries of the ranch, exactly correspond- 
ing with Mrs. Jackson's description. It had 
indeed extended " forty miles westward to the 
sea, forty miles eastward into the San Fer- 
nando Mountains, and an equal distance along 
the coast line." 

But Governor Pio Pico's grants had been 
largely disallowed by the American authori- 
ties, when they took over the country, and the 
limitations of the princely ranch had been 
greatly circumscribed. The crosses were yet 

[93] 



> STORY OF RAMONA > 

upon the hillsides to the north and the south 
of the ranch house, that the heretics might 
still know, " when they go by, that they are 
on the estate of a good Catholic." 

The "aroma of it all lingered there still." 
It had not been an unusual thing, during Sefior 
del Valle's day, for as many as fifty people to 
be seated in the spacious dining-room at one 
time. The working force of the ranch was 
perhaps never quite so large, but the occasion 
was rare when a dozen or more guests were 
not being entertained. 

It was a custom at Camulos, as at many 
another Spanish home in the Mission days, to 
place a basket of silver money in the room 
of the passing guest, stranger though he 
be, that he might replenish the financial needs 
of his journey. 

The resources of the ranch were large and 
varied, and settlements for wool and fruit and 
other foodstuffs came in large amounts. These 
were almost invariably made in coin, and it 
was the custom of the Sefior del Valle to keep 
all of the funds in a large trunk or box, that 
was never locked against any member of the 
family, nor was any account ever kept of the 
withdrawals made from time to time. 

When the writer was there the pay-roll 

[94] 



Jt STORY OF RAMONA * 

probably did not include more than a quarter 
of a hundred. But even from this diminished 
number in the household it would not have 
been difficult for the observer to select almost 
every character of the romance from those 
gathered in the patio and on the south veranda 
of the typical old Spanish hacienda. Neither 
Blanca Yndart, Guadalupe nor Senator del 
Valle was there. But there was Senora del 
Valle, still the uncrowned queen of the realm; 
half-breeds of almost noble bearing, who easily 
might represent Alessandro; and other per- 
sonages who, without violent wrenching of 
the imagination, might be taken for Juan 
Canito, the chief herder, for Marda, the cook, 
Anita and Maria, the forty-year-old twins, 
" born on the place," and their two daughters, 
Rosa and Anita the Little, for Jose, and all the 
other characters of the story. There was 
present more than one representative of old 
Juanita, oldest of the household, "silly, and 
good only to shell beans"; for to the day of 
her death Sefiora del Valle maintained a goodly 
little army of pensioned retainers, none of 
whom could she think of turning away. 

It has long been the custom to hold an an- 
nual fiesta at Camulos ranch, a gathering of 
the del Valle family and friends. A guest at 

[95] 



^ STORY OF RAMONA & 

one of these annual gatherings wrote a de- 
scription of it, published in " California of 
the South," which is here submitted: 

" The annual fiesta is a gathering of the del 
Valle family and a few invited guests that takes 
place in July, and lasts four days. The train 
from Los Angeles arrived about noon of the 
first day with twenty-five of the family and 
friends. Sefiora del Valle stood at the en- 
trance to the garden and welcomed each guest. 
The visitors were quickly conducted to their 
rooms, where water, comb and brush soon re- 
moved all trace of the midsummer car-ride. 
Dinner was then announced, and Senator Regi- 
nald F. del Valle, a prominent Los Angeles 
attorney, sat at the head of the table, which 
was under a shady arbor in the garden but a 
few steps from the chapel. Two barbecued 
pigs, done to perfection, formed the principal 
meat of this meal, but there were olives, cooked 
and pickled, various Spanish dishes, contain- 
ing almost invariably chiles (red peppers) 
and olives, delicious dessert, claret and white 
wine ad libitum, and the regulation black cof- 
fee. Surrounding the table were members 
of numerous distinguished Spanish-American 
families. The two features that attracted the 
particular attention of an American were the 

[96] 



? 



p. a 

Is 

3- a H 

ffi 






? 8 

> 



2 S 

CU (-H 

-Is 








in 



>. THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

gallantry of the men and the beauty and vi- 
vacity of the ladies. 

" The afternoon was spent by the guests 
hunting, riding, singing, reading, talking and 
mountain-climbing, just as each one chose. 
In this way of entertaining, and yet giving 
each visitor perfect freedom to do just as he 
pleased, the hostess and her daughters dis- 
played rare tact. Watermelons and fruits of 
various kinds were always at hand. 

" At 7 P.M. another bountiful meal was 
served in the arbor, which was brilliantly 
lighted by lanterns fastened between the in- 
numerable clusters of purple grapes that hung 
overhead. This time two roasted kids were 
served and delicious they were. After an 
hour's walk, all gathered in the spacious par- 
lor, and, with music on the piano, the organ 
and the guitar, and vocal solos and choruses, 
time quickly sped. Fireworks in the garden 
closed the entertainment for the first day. 
. " The next morning all were out bright and 
happy, and at breakfast, where everything 
was served with the usual profusion, the 
American would notice that olives were again 
eaten by all, which leads to a reflection in re- 
gard to the value of this ancient food. 

"After breakfast an hour was spent by the 

[97] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA V 

good hostess and her Catholic guests in the 
chapel. 

"A fat young steer was then lassoed by a 
vaquero, the aorta was dexterously severed 
with a knife, and then began some dissecting 
that would have surprised the most skillful 
anatomist. The skin was quickly and neatly 
taken off and spread out to protect the beef 
from the earth; the muscles were then, layer 
after layer, deftly removed, and in an incredibly 
short time this Mexican butcher had the meat 
ready for the fire. 

_ ,"A fire in a pit near by had been heating 
stones, which were now red-hot. Iron rods 
were laid across the pit, and the whole beef 
put on to roast for dinner. 

"The noon train from Los Angeles added 
materially to the number of guests, and 
seventy-five as happy people as ever lived sat 
around the heavily-laden table under the grape- 
vines. What a delicious meal that was! The 
eating was happily interspersed with laughter, 
conversation and brilliant repartee. 

"After the dessert had been enjoyed toasts 
were in order, and following those to the del 
Valle family, and Southern California, a gray- 
headed Mexican gentleman, after delivering 
a fervid, eloquent eulogy upon, proposed a 

981 



> STORY OF RAMONA * 

toast to the memory of Helen Hunt Jackson, 
which was drank standing. How true the 
statement: 'Mrs. Jackson is dead, but her 
work still lives in the hearts of the people of 
Southern California/ " 

The Ramona jewels were not exhibited, nor 
yet referred to, upon this visit of the writer. 
There was no occasion for it. They had all 
been given to Blanca Yndart, upon the occa- 
sion of her marriage to James Maguire, about 
1878. Blanca had removed them, with other 
belongings, to her home at Newhall, a town 
midway between Los Angeles and Camulos. 

The nomenclature, " Ramona jewels," is mis- 
leading, since the property, in addition to 
jewels, included a large trunk filled to reple- 
tion with dress skirts, waists, shawls, bolts of 
silk and of satin, and female lingerie generally. 
Most if not all of these were rich and costly, 
some of them very old, and all highly 
prized. 

It is an habitual practice of the old Span- 
ish families to retain clothing for years, and 
in the attic of the ranch house at Camulos 
there were not less than thirty trunks filled 
with clothing that had been accumulating for 
generations. Often skirts were made over for 
the children, but the waists, on account of 

[99] 



> STORY OF RAMONA * 

changing fashions and perhaps for other rea- 
sons, could not be so utilized, and in these 
trunks were samples of the fashions of numer- 
ous decades. 

The jewel case in the "secret closet" back 
of the statue of Saint Catherine, to which 
Sefiora Moreno is made to point in her dying 
conversation with Felipe, is the purest myth. 
There never was such a secret closet in the 
wall at Camulos, and Mrs. Jackson used it 
simply to heighten the reader's interest and 
add to the tensity of the situation. 

The Ramona jewels, until removed by 
Blanca Yndart, remained in a large trunk under 
the bed in Sefiora del Valle's chamber. They 
remained there many years, and there may 
have been many reasons for so keeping them 
segregated from the other trunks and boxes. 
None was volunteered and no explanation in- 
vited. Sight of the trunk itself was of more 
than ordinary interest to the writer. The 
jewels, as well as some of the rich fabrics, had 
been seen before. Mrs. Maguire had caused 
some of the former to be put in more modern 
settings, and much of the silks and satins had* 
been worked up into garments for herself and 
children. 

The significant fact about the Ramona jewels 

[100] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA Jt 

is that they correspond almost exactly with the 
description given of them in " Ramona." 

Title to Camulos ranch now vests in the 
"del Valle Estate," incorporated, and doubt- 
less always will remain an asset of the younger 
members. At this writing its affairs are being 
managed by a son, Ulpiano del Valle, the 
mother having died March 28, 1905. 



[101] 



CHAPTER XI 

HON. REGINALD F. DEL VALLE THE CHARACTER 
OF FELIPE THE MISSION PLAY LUCRETIA 
LOUISE DEL VALLE THE "RAMONA" STORY 
AND THE DEL VALLE FAMILY OFFENSIVE 
TOURISTS 

TO define a gentleman one might go far 
afield without disclosing a more pro- 
nounced exemplar than is Hon. Regi- 
nald F. del Valle, eldest son of Don Ygnacio 
and Sefiora del Valle, who of all the human 
documents yet living is most readily identi- 
fied as the person Mrs. Jackson had in mind 
in the idealization of the character of Felipe 
in the romance. Attire him in Spanish garb, 
as the artist Henry Sandham has properly 
done, and the portraits are not wholly unlike. 
Senator del Valle left Camulos ranch early 
in life to prepare himself for the practice of 
law, a profession he has graced for a quarter 
of a century in Los Angeles. Without undue 
self-seeking upon his part he has during that 
period been honored with many positions of 
distinction and trust. He always has been a 
consistent and active member of the Demo- 

[102] 



^ THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

cratic party, ever prominent in its councils, 
and not infrequently called upon to preside 
over its state conventions. Once he was a 
candidate for Lieutenant-Governor of Califor- 
nia, at another time he served a term with 
great credit in the State Senate, securing for 
Los Angeles the State Normal school, and 
again was a delegate to the national conven- 
tion of his party. At this time he is serving 
the City of Los Angeles in the honorary posi- 
tion of a member of the Municipal Water 
Board, a most important post during the period 
of bringing the Owens River to the city's gate. 
It was understood that, in the event of the elec- 
tion of Mr. Bryan, in 1896, Senator del Valle 
was to have the post of Ambassador to Mexico. 
It is an interesting circumstance, in this con- 
nection, that the romance of Mrs. Jackson 
closes with the arrival and settlement of Felipe 
and his beautiful bride in the Mexican capital. 
Of this the author says : " The story of the ro- 
mance of their lives, being widely rumored, 
greatly enhanced the interest with which they 
were welcomed. The beautiful young Sefiora 
Moreno was the theme of the city; and Felipe's 
bosom thrilled with pride to see the gentle 
dignity of demeanor by which she was dis- 
tinguished in all assemblages." 

[103] 



> STORY OF RAMONA * 

In the spring of 1913 affairs throughout the 
Republic of Mexico were in such chaotic con- 
dition, owing to the movements of various 
revolutionary bodies, that the Administration 
at Washington felt impelled to withhold recog- 
nition of the provisional government repre- 
sented by General Huerta until reliable assur- 
ances could be given of its ability to maintain 
a stable government and to give adequate pro- 
tection to the lives and property of all classes 
of people. That dependable information might 
be obtained from the various opposing factions 
in the republic, President Wilson determined 
to send a personal representative into Mexico, 
to report such facts as might be developed 
directly to him, to the end that such action as 
might finally be taken by the government of 
the United States should be based upon indis- 
putable facts, gathered by a person wholly dis- 
interested. The mission was a peculiarly deli- 
cate one, calling for the highest order of 
intelligence, of tact and diplomacy. That the 
distinction should fall upon Hon. Reginald 
Francisco del Valle, of California, was not cal- 
culated to surprise anyone, since his entire 
fitness for the trust was and is universally 
recognized. 

Senator del Valle, his wife and daughter 

[104] 




A WINDOW IN RAMONA'S BEDROOM, CAMULOS 
DWELLING 

All are barred. " It had been a long, sad day for Ramona ; 
and as she sat in her window * * * and looked at Alessandro 
pacing up and down, she felt for the first time * * * that she 
was glad he loved her." " Ramona," 




HON. REGINALD F. DEL VALLE, 

The eldest son of the mistress of Camulos ranch, the same rela- 
tion as Felipe to Senora Moreno of " Ramona." 



y, THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

accompanying him, went to Mexico, and at 
this writing he is in the City of Mexico, per- 
forming the duty assigned him by the Presi- 
dent of the United States. 

This mission to the capital of Mexico calls 
vividly to mind the consummation of the story 
of " Ramona." Felipe and Ramona, with the 
latter's infant daughter, went to Monterey, 
where they boarded a vessel and sailed for 
Mexico City, and were there married and lived. 

The somewhat phenomenal presentation of 
" The Mission Play," Mr. John S. McGroarty's 
magnificent and educational creation, at old 
San Gabriel, near Los Angeles, daily during 
the spring and summer of 1913, and later in 
San Francisco and other cities, has significance 
in this connection from the circumstance that 
the title role was assumed by Miss Lucretia 
Louise del Valle, the only child of the Senator, 
and the further fact that the old garret at 
Camulos contributed very largely to the young 
lady's strikingly beautiful native wardrobe, 
deemed essential to the proper presentation of 
the play. 

In enacting the leading feminine role Miss 
del Valle is appareled to represent the Spanish 
dress style of 1847. The costly and elaborate 

dress she wears in the character belonged to 

[105] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

her grandmother, Seiiora del Valle, and the 
beautiful shawl that adorns her shoulders was 
given to the grandmother by her grandfather 
in 1852, when the latter was a member of the 
California legislature. The coiffure worn by 
her also belonged to the grandmother, and was 
the style of dressing the hair in 1847. 

Senator del Valle has related to the authors 
the effect of " Ramona " on his mother's fam- 
ily. They suffered in two ways, he said. The 
public accepted his mother, Senora del Valle, 
the widowed owner of Camulos ranch, as the 
original of the character of Senora Moreno of 
the romance, and to her were attributed all 
the faults, imperfections and eccentricities of 
Senora Moreno. Public prejudice and criti- 
cism were harshly directed toward the noble 
and saintly Senora del Valle, who was in life 
the direct opposite of Senora Moreno in the 
latter's hatred and cruelty of Ramona. The 
authors especially refer the reader to the chap- 
ter in this volume of which Senora del Valle is 
the subject. 

For several years subsequent to the publica- 
tion of " Ramona," 1884, tourist excursions to 
California were mainly those conducted by a 
Boston firm, and were composed of New Eng- 
land people. Camulos ranch, the home of Ra- 

[106] 




SEflORA DOftA YSABEL DEL VALLE, 

The widowed mistress of Camulos ranch, accepted as Senora 
Moreno of " Ramona." 




MISS LUCRETIA LOUISE DEL VALLE, 

Daughter of Senator R. F. del Valle, and granddaughter of the 
mistress of Camulos ranch, appareled as she appears in the lead- 
ing feminine role of Mr. John S. McGroarty's magnificent pro- 
duction, the Mission Play, San Gabriel, California, 1913. The 
fan, coiffure, shawl and dress were owned by Senora del Valle, 
the grandmother, and show the Spanish style of dress of 1847. 



& THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

mona, was one of the California places of 
greatest interest to them; and, by special ar- 
rangement, the Southern Pacific train stopped 
at the ranch for a sufficient time to permit the 
tourists to visit the home of Ramona. 

Senator del Valle yet grows indignant when 
talking of the conduct of the New Englanders. 
They were rude, he asserts, and wholly ill- 
mannered. They picked the flowers and fruit, 
swarmed over the yard and gardens, took valu- 
able articles for souvenirs, and invaded the 
dwelling uninvited; and, on one occasion, when 
in the room described in the novel as having 
been the sleeping apartment of Ramona, a 
woman threw herself on the bed, exclaiming, 
" Now I can say I have laid on Ramona's 
bed." 

Such unseemly and rough conduct resulted 
in the ranch being closed to the Boston firm's 
excursionists, Senator del Valle himself writing 
the order to the firm, and declaiming against 
the perpetration of " Boston manners," as he 
put it, on Camulos ranch. 

At this time parties are courteously and gra- 
ciously permitted to enter the ranch at the old 
dwelling; but they are expected to demean 
themselves properly. 



[107] 



CHAPTER XII 

DONA YSABEL DEL VALLE THE MISTRESS OF 
CAMULOS RANCH SENORA MORENO OF " RA- 
MONA " 

CAMULOS ranch has by universal acclaim 
been accepted as the home of Ramona. 
The evidence conclusively establishes 
this fact. Naturally we turn there for the 
originals of the principal characters of the 
novel. 

We have heretofore asserted that Blanca 
Yndart and Guadalupe, the Indian girl, both 
wards of Sefiora del Valle, the mistress of 
Camulos, most likely suggested to Mrs. Jack- 
son, in the blending of their lives, the charac- 
ter of Ramona, and that Reginald F. del 
Valle, the eldest son of the family, could truly 
be taken as the original of Felipe. 

What Mrs. Jackson did not see or hear of 
the del Valle household when at Camulos was 
detailed to her by the Coronels. The fact that 
she did not meet Sefiora del Valle, because of 
the latter's absence from home on a mission of 
mercy elsewhere, weighed but little. Mrs. 

[108] 



> STORY OF RAMONA Jt 

Jackson let nothing escape her. She tena- 
ciously and retentively sought full knowledge 
of every person and thing that were incident to 
her travels. 

On meeting the Coronels after her visit to 
Camulos ranch, Mrs. Jackson was gleeful and 
enthusiastic over her trip there. She wanted 
all possible information concerning Senora 
del Valle, her deceased husband, Blanca Yn- 
dart, Guadalupe, Reginald F. del Valle, the 
eldest son, and other members of the house- 
hold, and of the customs of the ranch. 

The strong religious part of the personality 
of Senora del Valle was pictured to Mrs. Jack- 
son by the Coronels, who knew that devout 
woman intimately; and it may be correctly 
asserted that the religious devotion portrayed 
in the character of Senora Moreno was sug- 
gested by the saintly and religious life of 
Senora del Valle. 

But the harsh and unlovable disposition of 
Senora Moreno her haughty, merciless and 
cruel nature which crushed Ramona and drove 
her out into the night with an Indian sheep- 
shearer was never intended by Mrs. Jackson 
to be attributed to Senora del Valle, whose dis- 
position, charity, nobleness and sympathy were 

the beautiful gems in her sweet character. 

[109] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

Mrs. Jackson desired it to be distinctly un- 
derstood that she was not writing history in 
giving to the world the story of " Ramona." 
Nowhere in the novel does she specify Camulos 
ranch by name. The character of Sefiora Mo- 
reno was of her own creation, into whose life 
were injected these features of Sefiora del Valle : 
widowhood, the owner and mistress of an old 
California hacienda, devoutness to the Catholic 
Church, and having a son within the descrip- 
tion of the magnanimous character of Felipe. 

And it is because Mrs. Jackson drew from 
Sefiora del Valle the good qualities given to 
Senora Moreno of "Ramona," that makes the 
former an important and interesting person- 
age in the story of " Ramona." And it was 
Sefiora del Valle who was the mistress of 
Camulos ranch, who maintained the chapel 
there, from whose dress the torn altar cloth 
was made, who maintained the Mission bells, 
whose hospitality was extended to all who 
came upon her estate, and who "caused to be 
set up upon every one of the soft rounded hills 
which made the beautiful rolling sides of that 
part of the valley, a large wooden cross, . . . 
that the faithful may be reminded to pray." 

Senora Ysabel del Valle was one of the 
noblest women ever created, distinguished far 

[no] 



& THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

and wide for those characteristics that made 
her life a distinct blessing to all with whom 
she came in contact, and her death a loss from 
which a wide community has not yet ceased to 
suffer acutely or to mourn without surcease. 

In older times saints were made of such ma- 
terial; and were we living in the fourteenth 
rather than the twentieth century we certainly 
would have a Saint Ysabel. 

So true, so sincere, so devout, so constant, 
was her devotion to the Church of Rome, that 
when she died Bishop Conaty of Los Angeles 
took it upon himself to make all the arrange- 
ments for the funeral, saying to the family, 
"she belongs to us, not to you, and the 
Church claims all the privileges of caring for 
its own." 

From "The Tidings," the authorized organ 
of the Catholic Church of the Los Angeles 
diocese, we take the following concerning 
Sefiora del Valle and her funeral: 

" Sefiora del Valle was the daughter of Don 
Cerval Varela and Dona Ascencion Avila. 
Don Varela took an active part in the war 
with the United States and led an attack 
against the Americans at Rancho del Chino. 
He was the possessor of large tracts of land on 

which is now Boyle Heights and was owner of 

[in] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

the site where the Catholic orphanage now 
stands. 

" Sefiorita del Varela married Don Ygnacio 
del Valle, a man prominent in the history of 
California, and who controlled many of the 
large ranches in the San Fernando Valley. 
The ceremony was performed at the Church 
of Our Lady of the Angels, Los Angeles, De- 
cember 14, 1851. 

"As the funeral cortege passed the orphan 
asylum on Boyle Heights three hundred or 
more of the children of that institution, dressed 
in white, stood in line by the roadside and 
recited aloud the prayers for the dead. 

" To the few mourners who had lived in the 
early days and whose minds were treasured 
with the memories of Senora del Valle's youth, 
who had witnessed the trend of her young life 
as it molded itself into the woman and she 
became known as an exemplar among a people 
where the reign of honor and hospitality seemed 
to reach no bounds, the spectacle of these 
motherless children appealed most strikingly, 
and the days of the old Camulos were again re- 
called; days when great herds of stock wan- 
dered over the hills and valleys of the famous 
rancho, and the orchards hung heavy with the 
products of the fruitful seasons. 

[na] 







r ^jiLfai^fc" 

POMEGRANATE TREES, CAMULOS, 1913 




5 . 

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tf 

i-t 

%* 

Is 






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S| 

,, 
i O< 



t THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA t 

" Life was much the same at Camulos as on 
the other great ranches, and as the travel-worn 
stranger passed on his journey, by horse or 
afoot, he stopped for a while at the household 
where a welcome was never wanting. 

" The mistress of the rancho attended per- 
sonally to the details of the home-life, and from 
the break of dawn when the chapel bells called 
all to the morning devotion, she watched over 
her family and the servants of the household 
with a firmness and gentleness of manner which 
won a love and respect that time has never 
altered. 

"Instances of Sefiora del Valle's charity are 
innumerable, and race or creed did not enter 
into her thoughts when, whatever the hour of 
need, she was called upon to care for the poor 
or distressed. 

" She had been removed to Los Angeles sev- 
eral years before her death, where she made 
her home with her daughter, Mrs. Josefa For- 
ster, at whose residence she died. In her last 
moments she begged to be taken to Camulos 
that she might die amid scenes which were 
the dearest to her on earth, where her children 
had been raised and where her husband was 
lying under the altar of the little chapel." 

" The Tidings " is mistaken as to the burial 

[us] 



Jt STORY OF RAMONA > 

place of the husband of Senora del Valle. He 
was buried in the family graveyard at Camulos, 
but his remains were afterward removed and 
reinterred in the Catholic Cemetery at Los 
Angeles. 

At the close of the funeral exercises after 
the absolution, Rt. Rev. Bishop Conaty said: 

" While it is contrary to the established rules 
of the parish to deliver a eulogy over the dead, 
I feel that this occasion is one which will allow 
the rule to be set aside out of respect for the 
memory of the services rendered religion by 
the good woman whose death is universally 
lamented. 

" She represented a type of womanhood, the 
glory of the Church, as well as of the com- 
munity in which it is found. She was a woman 
whose life was dominated by the spirit of abso- 
lute and simple faith, which led her through a 
long life to untold deeds of kindness and charity. 
Her faith was something more than profession; 
it expressed itself in the everyday act of re- 
ligion and charity. 

" Her home was the center of her affections, 
and the love of husband and children caught 
its glow from the love of God, which char- 
acterized her entire life. The ranch home at 
Camulos was the home of hospitality and the 

[114] 




THE ROSARY OF THE DEL VALLE FAMILY, 

Made of the first gold found in California. (Permission of Miss 
Annie B. Picker, Pasadena.) 



* THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA t 

center of the religious life of all who came in 
contact with it. Her love of faith led her to 
a love for the altar and the priesthood, and the 
first gift of her olive harvest was in the oil 
needed for the Holy Thursday consecration in 
the Diocesan Cathedral. 

" As a young woman, wife and mother, the 
Sefiora of Camulos was a model of Christian 
womanhood, and she leaves the sweetest mem- 
ories of all that stands for goodness of life in 
Christian virtue. This type of woman is the 
outcome of faith in the Church which she 
loved. It is needed in our civilization to teach 
us the beauty of home-life in which the service 
of God is the source and spirit of God, the in- 
spiration. Such women are the bulwarks of 
our civilization and the pride of our humanity." 

To the smallest detail Sefiora del Valle was 
buried as a church dignitary would have been, 
and when asked for the expense bill by a fam- 
ily well able and more than willing to pay, the 
members of it were denied the privilege of par- 
ticipating even in that. 

After Don Ygnacio del Valle passed away, 
and until her own death, Sefiora del Valle was 
never seen with uncovered head. The nature of 
her husband's illness had been such that he could 
not lie down with comfort, and he died while 



Jt THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

sitting in a chair. His devoted wife sat close 
to and directly in front of him, and when the 
final moment came and the last flickering spark 
of life went out, his head gently dropped upon 
that of his wife, their foreheads meeting. The 
Senora wore at the time a light mantilla, a cus- 
tom of Spanish ladies. Her husband's life had 
gone out while his head rested upon it, and 
thereafter this covering was never removed, 
day or night, save upon a few occasions when 
it became necessary to replace it temporarily 
with a bonnet. This circumstance accentuates 
the Sefiora's unyielding devotion to whatever 
she regarded as a sacred duty. 



[116] 



CHAPTER XIII 

THE ORIGINALS OF THE CHARACTERS OF 
"RAMONA" 

IT may be correctly asserted that nearly 
every character of " Ramona " had its 
original, either in whole or in part. Mr. 
Abbot Kinney was a co-commissioner with 
Mrs. Jackson in an official investigation into 
the condition of the Mission Indians of South- 
ern California. Referring to their joint re- 
port to the Secretary of the Interior, Mr. Kin- 
ney says : " It was made by Mrs. Jackson and 
myself, and it was in the investigations that 
led to the making of it that the book ' Ra- 
mona ' was born. We actually saw some of 
the incidents described; many of the facts were 
developed by the witnesses, all of whom we 
examined under oath. We met with many of 
the characters whose pictures were afterwards 
drawn with startling fidelity by Mrs. Jackson 
in the pages of her book." 

Mr. Henry Sandham, the " Century's " 
artist, who accompanied Mrs. Jackson on her 
journeys through Southern California, wrote 



y, THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

thus: "As for the characters themselves, I 
have now in my possession sketches and 
studies made from life at the time of meeting 
the originals, meetings that were often as much 
fraught with meaning for me as they were for 
Mrs. Jackson." 

In other chapters of this volume it is stated 
that the character of Sefiora Moreno was 
suggested to Mrs. Jackson in part by Dona 
Ysabel del Valle, widowed mistress of Camulos 
ranch; that Ramona was a blending of two 
members of the del Valle family, Blanca 
Yndart, a Spanish girl, now Mrs. James Ma- 
guire, residing with her daughter at Los An- 
geles, and Guadalupe, a Mission Indian girl, 
given to Sefiora del Valle when a child by a 
Piru chief; and that in Felipe was the por- 
trayal of the eldest son of the mistress of 
Camulos ranch, Don Reginald Francisco del 
Valle. , Guadalupe is married and now resides 
in Arizona. 

Alessandro 

It has been a vain search to identify any 
living person as Alessandro. Sheep-shearing 
bands in Southern California were numerous 
at the time laid for the story, and each had its 
captain. 

[118] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

In the Coronel Collection at the Los An- 
geles Chamber of Commerce is a photograph 
of Rojerio Rocha, choir leader at San Fer- 
nando Mission and a violin player, whose lands 
were shamefully appropriated by white men, 
one of whom is now a well-to-do and promi- 
nent resident of Los Angeles. This Indian 
singer and violinist was well known to the 
Coronels, and they told Mrs. Jackson of him in 
detail. He has been declared by many to have 
suggested the character of Alessandro. 

Like Alessandro, Rojerio was a violin player 
and a singer. He played from notes and had 
a fine voice, the finest in the old Mission choir. 
The old people about the Mission even now 
tell of the wonderful playing of the violin by 
Rojerio. 

He was also an expert blacksmith and silver- 
smith, and performed both services at the Mis- 
sion for many years. He formed much of the 
beaten gold and silver plate used by the Mis- 
sion fathers, and it was his skill that fashioned 
the elaborately silver-ornamented bridles used 
by the wealthy senores of the Mission days. 

Rojerio married and continued to live at the 
Mission until the padres were driven from it. 
Then General Pico gave him a small tract of 
fertile land three miles to the east of the Mis- 

[119] 



Jt STORY OF RAMONA * 

sion, near Pacoima Creek. But the white men 
were driving the Indians from their posses- 
sions, and one day Rojerio and his family, with 
all their belongings, were forced into a wagon, 
and taken away and dumped on the San Fer- 
nando county road. That night it rained, and 
the outcasts were without shelter or food. 
Rojerio's wife was then quite sickly, and be- 
cause of the exposure she died in the road 
where they had been put. 

Rojerio never forgot the awful wrong. He 
had deep disdain for Americans and their honor. 
He knew of the location of the mine which 
furnished the Mission padres the gold which 
made the San Fernando Mission famous for 
its gold plate. A short time before his death 
Rojerio showed to an Indian friend a large 
nugget of almost pure gold, saying that he 
would tell him of the location of the mine, if 
a deed were so drawn that no American could 
ever get possession of it. 

When in 1846 the San Fernando Mission 
padres anticipated and feared an attack by the 
Americans they hurried away all the gold 
plate in the Mission and secretly buried it. In 
late years Rojerio was credited with being the 
only living person who knew where the valu- 
able treasure was hidden, and he declared that 

[120] 




ROJERIO ROCHA, 

Choir leader and violin player at San Fernando Mission, whose 

attainments Mrs. Jackson used in creating 

Alessandro. 



the character of 



y, STORY OF RAMONA Jft 

he was one of the persons who carried the plate 
from the Mission and buried it; yet he so hated 
the Americans because of the wrong done him 
by white men, that he persistently refused to 
disclose the place where the golden treasure 
was secreted. 

A few weeks before his death he took from 
an old chest in his home a part of a sheep's 
hide, tanned on the inside, on which were 
tracings, arrows and crosses and other char- 
kcters. This skin he gave to an old Indian 
companion, with the statement that the trac- 
ings and marks on it had been made by the 
Mission padres, and showed the location of the 
lost Mission plate, said to be of the value of 
not less than one million dollars. 

Later this sheepskin was delivered by the 
Indian friend of Rojerio's, after the latter's 
death, to some white men, for a price paid and 
a promise to give a good share of the gold 
plate, if found. One of these men was a client 
of the writer, and the latter undertook, with 
others, the translation and deciphering of this 
chart. All agreed that the drawing led from 
the Mission buildings eastward to Pacoima 
canon, thence up the creek from the base line 
of the mountains one mile. A marking on the 
skin which we interpreted to indicate a certain 



>. THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA y 

sycamore tree proved accurate. The tree stood 
on the south side of the canon at the edge 
of the creek's bank. Directly across from this 
tree was a flat rock imbedded in the side of 
the canon, which was another of the points 
indicated by the marks on the skin. 

Distances were minutely measured. Every 
effort to locate the spot where the golden 
treasure lay was made with scientific accurate- 
ness. All agreed as to the place where dig- 
ging should begin. The utmost secrecy was 
attempted. The work of uncovering the 
hunted gold began. Watchers were stationed 
up and down the canon. 

The first work was in sinking a shaft to a 
depth of twenty feet, as indicated by the sheep- 
skin chart. Then a drift was cut to the west, 
as indicated by the drawings on the skin. 
Day after day, and often at night, the work 
progressed. 

Two strangers appeared on the scene, de- 
claring that they knew the men there were 
hunting for the buried plate belonging to the 
San Fernando Mission, and if the gold were 
found the Church would claim it. The lawyers 
advised continuing the work, and if the treas- 
ure should be found then to meet the demand 
of the Church, if any. 

[133] 



THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

When what the expert ground men declared 
to have been an old tunnel was encountered 
in running the drift from the bottom of the 
twenty-foot shaft, there was great consterna- 
tion and hope. All were enthused. Night 
shifts were put on. They dug and dug on, but 
in vain. 

Hope died, and the attempt to find the golden 
plate with the aid of Rojerio's sheepskin was 
abandoned. 

This identical sheepskin is in the possession 
of one of the authors. 

Seiiora de Coronel relates and vouches for the 
correctness of the following story of Rojerio, 
which he told her and her husband with tears 
and sobs. He went to them as the refuge 
and helper of the troubled Indian. 

Pacoima Creek, which empties into San Fer- 
nando valley near the town of that name, was 
swollen and filled with a torrent of water. 
The white men, who had taken his land 
and resented his remonstrance, tied Rojerio's 
hands behind him, fastened a rope around his 
waist, securing the other end to a rock, then 
threw him into the creek, and left him to what 
seemed certain death. 

Rojerio was swiftly carried to the length 
of the rope, and then into a sycamore tree, to 

["3] 



> STORY OF RAMONA & 

the branches of which he desperately clung for 
a day and a night, when the water in the swol- 
len stream subsided and he managed to free 
his hands and escape. 

Rojerio died in 1904 at an age supposed 
to have been near one hundred years. He was 
a giant in stature, and a Hercules in strength. 
A century of years did not bend his form. 
He was " as straight as an Indian " to the 
time of his death. 

The life of this Indian must have impressed 
Mrs. Jackson, and his accomplishments and 
sufferings doubtless suggested some of the fea- 
tures and experiences of Alessandro. An In- 
dian who could sing well and play the violin 
entertainingly was a rarity. Rojerio is the 
only one possessing such accomplishments of 
whom the Coronels told Mrs. Jackson, and it 
is a reasonable inference that the musical at- 
tainments Mrs. Jackson gave to the Indian 
Alessandro, the hero of her novel, were sug- 
gested by the story of Rojerio. 

Mrs. Jackson was particularly interested in 
the sad experience of Pablo Assis, chief of the 
Temecula Indians. After returning to Colo- 
rado Springs she wrote to the Coronels of her 
intention to write a novel, " in which," quot- 
ing from the letter, "will be set forth some 



s, 
?-. 



o 

il 

o 2: 



3 n 

E: > 

3 5* 

-. 3 

i 




>. THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA t 

Indian experiences in a way to move people's 
hearts. ... I would like an account, written 
in as much detail as you remember, of the time 
when you, dear Mr. Coronel, went to Temecula 
and marked off the boundaries of the Indians' 
lands there. How many Indians were living 
there then? What crops had they? Had they 
a chapel? Was Pablo Assis, their chief, alive? 
I would like to know his whole history, life, 
death, and all, minutely/' 

Mrs. Jackson made her Alessandro the son 
of Pablo Assis, the Temecula Indian chief, and 
the sheep-shearers Temecula Indians. Pablo 
Assis had a son, but his name, disposition and 
attainments are unknown. 

The experiences of Alessandro, as portrayed 
by Mrs. Jackson, aside from the Ramona love 
part, were real as to different Indians. There 
were the Temecula ejectment, the wanderings 
of members of that tribe and the killing of 
Juan Diego, a crazy Indian, on a spur of 
the San Jacinto Mountains, by Sam Temple, 
for horse-stealing, just as related in the 
story to have been the tragic death of Ales- 
sandro. 

So far as can be discovered the character of 
Alessandro must be taken as original with Mrs. 
Jackson, created by her without reference to 

[125] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

any particular person, unless it was Rojerio 
Rocha. 



Ramona 

What has been already said as to the char- 
acter of Ramona may be supplemented by as- 
serting that she was not Ramona Diego, wife 
of the Indian killed for horse stealing by Sam 
Temple, and known as Ramona Lubo, or the 
Cahuilla Ramona. This woman is squat, fat 
and unattractive. She and her baskets have 
been commercialized to a ridiculous extent. 
Susceptible tourists travel far to see her, buy 
the baskets she offers for sale and look upon 
her as the real Ramona of Mrs. Jackson's 
novel. Far from it. 

The identity of names in this instance does 
not prove identity of person. " Ramona " is a 
common name among Indians and Mexicans. 
It is the feminine of " Ramon," which means 
the tops of branches cut for food for sheep in 
snowy weather. The name is beautiful and 
easily spoken. 

In a previous chapter we have told of how 
Mrs. Jackson was attracted by the name " Ra- 
mona" when she first heard it, and of her 

declaration to the Coronels that she would use 

[126] 




RAMONA LUBO, 

Wife of Juan Diego, killed by Jim Farrar of " Ramona," with 
her star basket. She is an expert basket maker and hundreds of 
baskets, many not made by her, have been sold as her product, 
and under the erroneous statement that she is the " Real 
Ramona." 



y, THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

the name as the title to her proposed novel. 

Every woman Mrs. Jackson met or heard of 
in California bearing the name " Ramona " is 
supposed to be the real Ramona of her genius. 
Mrs. Hartsel, of Temecula, who was Mrs. Ra- 
mona Wolfe, is accordingly, by some, declared 
to be the real Ramona; but she was not. 

The care with which Mrs. Jackson selected 
the names for her characters is evidenced by a 
letter from her to Senor and Sefiora de Coronel 
containing the following: "I am still at work 
on my story (' Ramona ') It is more than 
half done. I wish you would ask those Indian 
women who made the lace for me what would 
be, in their Pala or San Luis Rey dialect, the 
words for Blue Eyes. I want to have a little 
child called by that name in my story, if the 
Indian name is not too harsh to the ear." 

The " little child " proved to be the first-born 
of Alessandro and Ramona. It had blue eyes, 
a natural repetition of the eyes of Ramona's 
paternal Scotch ancestors. The child was 
named " Eyes of the Sky," but the Indian word 
is not given in the novel. It is related, how- 
ever, that at the baptismal, "when Father 
Gaspara took the little one in his arms, and 
made the sign of the cross on her brow, he 
pronounced with some difficulty the syllables 

[127] 



+ THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

of the Indian name, which meant ' Blue Eyes,' 
or Eyes of the Sky. 1 " 

When asked concerning this incident Seiiora 
de Coronel said: "I remember Mrs. Jackson's 
letter asking for the Indian name for ' Blue 
Eyes.' My husband answered it. He knew the 
name and gave it to Mrs. Jackson. I cannot 
now recall it. It is a peculiar name." 

The selection of the names of two of the 
helpers at Camulos ranch and Felipe, the eld- 
est son of Senora Moreno, may be reasonably 
conjectured. When at San Luis Key Mis- 
sion Mrs. Jackson attended the funeral serv- 
ices of an old Indian woman named Margarita, 
whose life was told to Mrs. Jackson, and 
greatly interested her. Margarita was a sis- 
ter of Manuelito, a famous chief of several 
bands of the San Luisenos. Mrs. Jackson went 
ten miles from San Luis Rey Mission to the 
home of this old woman, at Potrero, passing 
the night there. The name Margarita she 
gave to "the youngest and prettiest of the 
maids" at Camulos. 

Mrs. Jackson attended a sheep-shearing at 
La Puente ranch, a part of the late " Lucky " 
Baldwin's estate, and thus describes an incident 
of the occasion : " As soon as the shearers per- 
ceived that their pictures were being drawn by 

[I**] 




X 






> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

the artist in our party, they were all agog; by 
twos and threes they left their work and 
crowded around the carriage, peering, com- 
menting, asking to have their portraits taken, 
quizzing those whose features they recognized. 
All were ready to pose and stand, even in the 
most difficult attitudes, as long as was required. 
Those who had done so asked, like children, 
if their names could not be put in the book; 
so I wrote them all down : ' Juan Canero, 
Juan Rivera, Felipe Ybara, Jose Jesus Lopez, 
and Domingo Garcia.' " 

Here is evidenced her knowledge of the name 
Felipe. Juan Canero could have reasonably 
suggested Juan Canito, the name of the head- 
shepherd at Camulos. 

Father Salvierderra 

The noble character given to Father Salvier- 
derra by Mrs. Jackson is not overdrawn. 
There were many of the Franciscan Fathers 
who lived the pure, sweet, unselfish life por- 
trayed of this priest in " Ramona." 

There was an original of Father Salvier- 
derra. The statement of this fact by Mr. 
Henry Sandham, the artist, should be con- 
clusive. He bore a commission from the 

[129] 



y THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA y, 

" Century Magazine " to accompany Mrs. Jack- 
son on her California travels. It is his work 
that adorns Little, Brown & Company's edi- 
tion of " Ramona," 1900. One of the paintings 
from which the illustrations are taken is the 
original of Father Salvierderra. 

Mr. Sandham thus refers to his work with 
Mrs. Jackson: "At the time of the California 
sojourn I knew neither the name nor the exact 
details of the proposed book; but I did know 
that the general plan was a defense of the 
Mission Indians, together with a plea for the 
preservation of the Mission buildings, and so 
on; the whole to be enveloped in the mystery 
and poetry of romance. I had thus sufficient 
knowledge of the spirit of the text to work 
with keener zest upon the sketches for the 
illustrations; sketches which, it may be of in- 
terest to know, were always made on the spot, 
with Mrs. Jackson close at hand, suggesting 
emphasis to this object or prominence to that, 
as it was to have special mention in the book. 
... As for the characters themselves, I have 
now in my possession sketches and studies 
made from life at the time of my meeting the 
originals a meeting that was often as much 
fraught with meaning for me as it was for 
Mrs. Jackson. ... As illustrative of the au- 

[130] 



At THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

thor's fidelity to truth in character drawing, I 
shall mention but one of the many real char- 
acters; namely, the original of Father Salvier- 
derra. This character is positively startling 
in its accurateness. I knew the original Father 
well, and often sought his assistance and advice. 
I remember I needed him once while at work in 
the Santa Barbara Mission, and failing to find 
him in any other of his favorite haunts, I 
entered the church, where I found him kneel- 
ing before the altar praying. He looked up as 
I entered, and with his usual lovable smile, 
said : * I will be with you in a few minutes, my 
son.' Shortly he arose to his feet, threw his 
arm around my neck, and leaning on my 
shoulder (he was then well past seventy years 
of age) he asked as we passed down the cor- 
ridor, ' What can I do to help you? ' In this 
question lay the keynote of his whole life. 
At another time, as we walked through the 
garden, he stooped, and putting his hand under 
one of the gorgeous California poppies, re- 
marked, as he turned its face up to me, ' Is not 
our little brother beautiful? ' ... In my studio 
I have the venerable Father's complete costume, 
given me at the time I was making the * Ra- 
mona' sketches; it includes the cassock, cowl, 
sandals and hempen girdle with its symbolical 

131] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

five knots. The sandals are well worn and the 
cowl bleached and faded by the sun marks 
of the endless round of toils and duties so 
faithfully described by Mrs. Jackson." 

The omission by Mr. Sandham of the true 
name of the original of Father Salvierderra left 
the identity of that person in doubt. But the 
authors labored unceasingly to identify the 
original and with success. 

The fact that the original was one of the 
Fathers at Old Mission, Santa Barbara, did 
not give certainty to the labor of discovery; 
for there have been, as there now are, many 
saintly characters within the confines of that 
Mission whose devout and unselfish lives have 
been a part of the work and history of the 
Catholic Church in Southern California. 

Father Joseph J. O'Keefe, of Old Mission, 
Santa Barbara, was suggested to the authors 
as the original of Father Salvierderra. This 
thought gave a lead to the real Father Sal- 
vierderra of " Ramona." He was not Father 
O'Keefe, but he died in the arms of this noble 
and venerable Franciscan, who yet lives, and, 
though feeble, is still in active service at St. 
Francis' Orphanage, Watsonville, California. 

We may positively and correctly assert that 
the original of Father Salvierderra was Fr. 



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Father Francisco de Jesus Sanchez, O. S. F., Old Mission 
Santa Barbara, the original of Father Salvierderra of " Ramona." 
" His benevolent face is well known throughout the country. 
* * * He gives away garment after garment, leaving himself 
without protection against cold. * * * He often kneels from 
midnight to dawn on the stone floor of the church, praying 
and chanting psalms." (Mrs. Jackson in "Glimpses of Cali- 
fornia and the Missions") 



*t THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

Francisco de Jesus Sanchez, O.F.M., of the 
Santa Barbara Mission. The records and 
traditions of this Mission, and evidence from 
other sources, establish this fact. 

The Rev. Father Conradine Wallbraun, of 
the Old Mission, Santa Barbara, answering a 
letter the authors wrote to the Rev. Father 
Guardian of that Mission concerning the origi- 
nal of Father Salvierderra, says in part: "The 
Rev. Fr. Guardian of our Mission has author- 
ized me to give you the desired information 
about the noble character, Rev. Father Sal- 
vierderra, in ' Ramona.' The hero is Rev. Fr. 
Francisco Sanchez, O.F.M., who died here in 
the Old Mission in 1884, at the side of Rev. 
Fr. J. O'Keefe, O.F.M., who is still living at 
our establishment in Watsonville, California, 
St. Francis' Orphanage. The Rev. Fr. 
O'Keefe, O.F.M., was then not well past 
seventy, since he was born in 1843. The death 
of Fr. Francisco Sanchez is well described by 
Mrs. Helen Hunt Jackson. Fr. O'Keefe, in 
whose arms the saintly Father expired, can 
testify to it." 

At the request of the authors Father O'Keefe 
has written of Father Francisco Sanchez and 
his death expressly for this volume, and the 
article is here given in full: 

[133] 



>. THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

44 Many are the incidents that could be re- 
lated about the Reverend Father de Jesus 
Sanchez, O.F.M., regarding his great mission- 
ary zeal and unbounded charity to all, his self- 
denial and patience in suffering. I am sorry 
I am so disabled, owing to the condition of 
my sight, which is very poor, leaving me un- 
able to write much, and having no one who 
could spare the time to write at my dictation, 
I must be content to write what I can at pres- 
ent, and that is little. 

"I became acquainted with the Reverend 
Father Sanchez in July, 1860. He was then 
Master of Novices at the Old Mission at Santa 
Barbara. He was very much sought after by 
pastors throughout the State to preach and 
give mission to the Mexican and Spanish peo- 
ple, and also to the Indians. So he was well 
known by all the ranch owners from Sacra- 
mento to San Diego, and nearly all the Spanish 
and Mexican people in the State knew him. 

" In 1872 he was assigned to reside in the 
Orphanage, give missions and collect for the 
orphans. 

" In 1882 he received several injuries. He 
never said much about the injuries, but bore 
them very patiently. 

"Shortly after this he left the Orphanage 

[134] 



^ THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

and returned to Santa Barbara, and there his 
injuries were aggravated by his falling over a 
large cut stone. A few days after he felt un- 
able to go about much, and the doctor ordered 
him to be quiet and remain in his room, where 
he was nursed, receiving the best care and at- 
tention possible. 

" I visited him often every day, and my first 
visit was always early every morning. The 
last morning I saw him very early before I 
went to the Church, and found him in very 
good humor, and seemingly very lively; so I 
told him I would return again as soon as I 
was through in the Church. 

" I came as I promised, and found him lying 
on the bare floor, and seemingly in great pain. 
I raised him into a sitting posture and held him 
awaiting a chance to put him on the bed; but 
while I held him, believing he would be rested 
by my holding him, he gave a deep sigh and 
expired in my arms. 

"His death occurred in 1884. 







August loth, 19x3. 
Watsonville, California." 



In "Ramona" the death of Father Salvier- 
derra is thus described: "When Father Gas- 

[135] 



* THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA *t 

para was taking leave, Ramona said, with 
quivering lips : ' Father, if there is anything 
you know of Father Salvierderra's last hours, 
I would be grateful to you for telling me.' 

'"I heard very little,' replied the Father, 
'except that he had been feeble for some 
weeks; yet he would persist in spending most 
of the night kneeling on the stone floor in the 
Church, praying.' 

" ' Yes,' interrupted Ramona ; ' that he al- 
ways did.' 

" ' And the last morning,' continued the Fa- 
ther, 'the Brothers found him there, still 
kneeling on the stone floor, but quite power- 
less to move; and they lifted him, and carried 
him to his room, and there they found, to their 
horror, that he had no bed; he had lain on the 
stones; and then they took him to the Su- 
perior's own room, and laid him in the bed, 
and he did not speak any more; and at noon 
he died.' " 

At the time of the death of Father Sanchez 
Mrs. Jackson was in New York writing " Ra- 
mona." The news of his death was communi- 
cated to her there, and in time for the portrayal 
of the dying of Father Salvierderra and the 
relation of the sad occurrence to Ramona by 

Father Gaspara of San Diego while on a visit 

[136] 




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THE TRUE STORY OF * 

at San Pasquale, where Alessandro and Ra- 
mona had established a home, in which they 
made Father Gaspara their guest. He was the 
same Father who had married this wandering 
couple two years previous. 

It was the custom of Father Sanchez to 
spend much of each day kneeling in prayer 
on the stone floor of the Church. 

Mrs. Jackson evidently heard just sufficient 
of the circumstances of the death of Father 
Sanchez to suggest the conditions which she 
described as attending the death of Father Sal- 
vierderra. 

Father Sanchez was in every respect the 
noble and saintly priest as portrayed by Mrs. 
Jackson in the character of Father Salvier- 
derra. 

In discovering and identifying the original 
of Father Salvierderra of " Ramona," the au- 
thors have been given valuable assistance by 
Father Theodore Arentz, O.F.M., Superior of 
Old Mission, Santa Barbara. We here submit 
an interesting communication from him upon 
the subject: 

" I have glanced over the book ' Ramona ' 
of Mrs. Helen Hunt Jackson, and I must say 
that, from what she writes about Father ' Sal- 
vierderra/ from the mention she makes of one 

[137] 



Jt THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA t 

other Father who was with him at Santa Bar- 
bara, and of other conditions and circumstances, 
it appears evident to me, that by Father Sal- 
vierderra she can mean no one else but Rev. 
Father Francisco Sanchez of the Mission 
Santa Barbara. 

" Father Francisco Sanchez was at the time 
Mrs. Jackson was in Southern California 
(1882-83) nearly 70 years of age, he having 
been born in Leon, State of Guanajuato, 
Mexico, in August, 1813. In February, 1837, 
he received the habit of the Franciscan Order 
in the Franciscan Colegio Apostolico de Gua- 
dalupe, near Zacatecas, and in 1838 he was 
ordained priest. In 1841 he came with Rt. 
Rev. Francisco Garcia Diego y Moreno, first 
bishop of both Californias, who was of the 
same Colegio Apostolico de Guadalupe, to 
California, arriving at San Diego on December 
n, 1841, and at Santa Barbara on January 
n, 1842. 

" From then on he traveled as missionary 
more than once over nearly all California, 
visiting many places frequently, and being at 
intervals stationed at different places, such 
as at San Buenaventura, 1842-43, 1852-53; at 
Santa Ines, 1844-50, as Vice-Rector of the 
seminary at Pajaro Valley Orphanage, 1874- 

[138] 



& THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

79, being most of the time on collection trips 
for the orphanage and giving at the same time 
missions in the different places he visited. 
The rest of the time he was stationed at Santa 
Barbara, where he held the office of Master 
of Novices, and from where he visited as mis- 
sionary other places near and far, being invited 
by people and priests. 

" He was a very pious and zealous padre. 
He died at the Old Mission, Santa Barbara, in 
one of the lower rooms facing the front cor- 
ridor, on April 17, 1884, at 7:45 A.M., in the 
arms of Rev. Father Joseph O'Keefe, at the 
age of 70 years and 8 months. 

" At about the same time Mrs. Jackson fin- 
ished her book ' Ramona ' in New York. Per- 
haps she had heard of the severe illness, or 
even death, of Father Francisco Sanchez at the 
time she finished her book. 

" The young Brazilian monk, Father Francis, 
to whom, Mrs. Jackson says (Chap. XXV), 
Father Salvierderra was greatly attached, must 
have been Father Francisco Arbondin. He 
came as a young man (student) from South 
America, was received into the Franciscan 
Order at Santa Barbara on April 26, 1876, 
took the solemn vows May 6, 1880, and was 
ordained priest that same year in the month 

[139] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

of July. In 1885 he went, with the permission 
of his superiors, to Guatemala. 

" The Santa Barbara Mission was, according 
to Mrs. Jackson, the place where Father Sal- 
vierderra made his home, and here it was 
where Father Sanchez lived, especially after 
1879, though while stationed at the Pajaro 
Valley Orphanage he was frequently at Santa 
Barbara, and from where he made his visits 
to different places, rancherias, etc., to give the 
people a chance to assist at Holy Mass, to hear 
the word of God preached to them, to go to 
confession, to receive holy communion, etc. 
Here, at Santa Barbara, the people also came 
to him. 

"In her book Mrs. Jackson calls the Mis- 
sion Santa Barbara promiscuously * Franciscan 
Monastery' (Chap. IV), and 'College' (Chap. 
XXV). The Mission at that time was not 
a monastery in the proper sense; such it 
became in 1885, when it was incorporated into 
the Franciscan Province of the Sacred Heart 
of Jesus, whose headquarters are at St. Louis, 
Mo. Nor was it any longer a college in the 
common sense, or an institution of learning 
for young boys and men, as it had been from 
1868 to 1876, when it was closed, because the 
Fathers were too few and too old and the hir- 

[140] 



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> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

ing of professors was too expensive to keep it 
up; but it was a missionary college, i.e., a 
colegio apostolico de propaganda fide, like the 
colegios in Mexico, from which the mission- 
aries had come to California; though, for cer- 
tain reasons, on a very small scale. As such 
it had been established in 1854, an d such it 
remained until 1885. 

" The community from 1880 to 1884 con- 
sisted of the following solemnly professed 
Fathers (priests) and Lay Brothers: Very Rev. 
Jcse Maria Romo, O.F.M., Guardian Superior; 
Rev. Joseph J. O'Keefe, O.F.M., Vicar; Rev. 
Francisco Sanchez, O.F.M.; Rev. Jose Godiol, 
O.F.M.; Rev. Bonaventura Fox, O.F.M.; Rev. 
Francisco Arbondin, O.F.M.; Bro. Anthony 
Gallagher, O.F.M.; Bro. Joseph Patrick O'Mal- 
ley, O.F.M.; Bro. Dominie Reid, O.F.M. 

" We have a good photograph here which 
was taken in 1882 or 1883, and on which all 
the above mentioned Fathers and Brothers, ex- 
cept Father Jose Godiol, are represented. 

" As to the name ' Salvierderra ' used by 
Mrs. Jackson, I think, and I have also heard 
the same opinion expressed by others, that she 
took and changed it from ' Zalvidea,' the name 
of a Franciscan missionary who came to Cali- 
fornia in August, 1805, and was successively 

[MI] 



* STORY OF RAMONA *t 

stationed at San Fernando 1805-6, at San 
Gabriel 1806-26, at San Juan Capistrano 1826- 
42, and at San Luis Rey 1842-46, when and 
where he died at an age of about 66 years, 
and who was a model missionary, and consid- 
ered and much talked of by the common people 
as a saint; as also Bancroft remarks. Probably 
Mrs. Jackson heard his name mentioned when 
in California. Or she may have changed the 
name from ' Salvatierra,' the great Jesuit mis- 
sionary, or apostle of Lower California, from 
1697-1717. 



-*-^^ 



" Santa Barbara, California, 
September 4, 1913." 

In " Glimpses of California and the Mis- 
sions" Mrs. Jackson thus pictured Father 
Sanchez and the Santa Barbara Mission: 

"The Santa Barbara Mission is still in the 
charge of Franciscans, the only one remaining 
in their possession. It is now called a college 
for apostolic missionary work, and there are 
living within its walls eight members of the 
order. One of them is very old, a friar of 

the ancient regime; his benevolent face is 

143] 



* THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

well known throughout the country, and there 
are in many a town and remote hamlet men 
and women who wait always for his coming 
before they will make confession. He is like 
Saint Francis's first followers: the obligations 
of poverty and charity still hold to him the 
literal fullness of the original bond. He gives 
away garment after garment, leaving himself 
without protection against cold; and the 
brothers are forced to lock up and hide from 
him all provisions, or he would leave the house 
bare of food. He often kneels from midnight 
to dawn on the stone floor of the church, pray- 
ing and chanting psalms; and when a terrible 
epidemic of smallpox broke out some years ago, 
he labored day and night, nursing the worst 
victims of it, shrouding them and burying them 
with his own hands. , He is past eighty and 
has not much longer to stay. He has outlived 
many things beside his own prime; the day of 
the sort of faith and work to which his spirit 
is attuned has passed by forever. 

"The Mission buildings stand on high 
ground, three miles from the beach, west of 
the town and above it, looking to the sea. In 
the morning the sun's first rays flash full on 
its front, and at evening they linger late on 
its western wall. It is an inalienable benedic- 

[143] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA ^ 

tion to the place. The longer one stays there 
the more he is aware of the influence on his 
soul, as well as of the importance in the land- 
scape of the benign and stately edifice. 

" On the corridor of the inner court hangs 
a bell which is rung for the hours of the daily 
offices and secular duties. It is also struck 
whenever a friar dies, to announce that all is 
over. It is the duty of the brother who has 
watched the last breath of the dying one to go 
immediately and strike this bell. Its sad note 
has echoed many times through the corridors. 
One of the brothers said last year: 'The first 
time I rang that bell to announce a death, there 
were fifteen of us left. Now there are only 
eight/ 

" The sentence itself fell on my ear like the 
note of a passing-bell. It seems a not unfit- 
ting last word to this slight and fragmentary 
sketch of the labors of the Franciscan Order 
in California." 

The authors have sought to discover the 
origin of the name " Salvierderra." Some have 
accepted Padre Jose Maria de Zalvidea, for 
years one of the Fathers at San Gabriel Mis- 
sion, as the original of Father Salvierderra, 
but merely because of some similarity of names. 
But not so. There is nothing in " Ramona " 

[144] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA t 

that in any way identifies the San Gabriel Fa- 
ther with Father Salvierderra of the story. 

Mrs. Jackson did nothing in a light or in- 
significant way. She wanted a fictitious name 
for dear old Father Sanchez. She frequently 
had Sefior and Sefiora de Coronel define and 
translate Spanish words and expressions for her. 
A superficial answer was not sufficient; she 
wanted the derivation of words, and often the 
conversation upon such a topic would lead to 
a lesson in etymology. 

Mrs. Jackson was an intense admirer of 
Father Sanchez. He and Father Junipero 
Serra were to her almost Christ-like. She ex- 
tolled their virtues, recounted with tearful 
sympathy their struggles and sufferings and 
proclaimed their lives to have been divinely 
perfect. She knew that the prototype of the 
priestly character of her proposed novel was 
teaching and giving salvation to his fellow- 
beings. She sought a name bearing signifi- 
cance. She had only to take the Spanish verbs 
salvar,to save, and dar,to give, and create the 
name she desired. Dropping the "r" from 
salvar, and combining the root with the sub- 
junctive imperfect of the irregular verb dar, 
which is diera, produces Salvadiera, signifying 
giving salvation. 

CMS! 



*. STORY OF RAMONA > 

It is true Mrs. Jackson did not follow the 
correct Spanish spelling of the name. This 
may have been intentional or an error. The 
same comment may be made concerning the 
name " Alessandro." As to it Mrs. Jackson 
rejected the Spanish spelling, " Alejandro," and 
adopted the Italian. 

However this may be, we find in Father 
Francisco de Jesus Sanchez, O.F.M., Master of 
Novices at Old Mission, Santa Barbara, the 
worthy original of Father Salvierderra of " Ra- 



mona." 



Angus Phail Ramona's Father 

As further evidence of the assertion that 
many of the characters of the Ramona romance 
had their originals, is the assured fact that 
Angus Phail, Ramona's father, was in reality 
Hugo Reid, a well-known Scotchman of many 
eccentricities, who lived for years at San 
Gabriel. 

Angus Phail loved Ramona Gonzaga, sister 
of Senora Moreno. His love was unrequited, 
and this drove him to desperation. " He was 
the owner of the richest line of ships which 
traded along the coast at that time. The rich- 
est stuffs, carvings, woods, pearls and jewels, 

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which came into the country, came in his ships. 
. . . The Sefiorita Ramona Gonzaga sailed 
for Monterey the same day and hour her lover 
sailed for San Bias. . . . This was to be his 
last voyage. ... He comforted himself by 
thinking that he would bring back for his 
bride . . . treasures of all sorts." 

Angus returned from this last voyage to find 
his sefiorita married to an Ortegna. This mad- 
dened him. "He sold all he possessed; ship 
after ship sold for a song, and the proceeds 
squandered in drinking or worse. . . . Finally 
Angus disappeared, and after a time the news 
came up from Los Angeles that he was there, 
had gone out to San Gabriel Mission, and was 
living with the Indians. Some years later came 
the still more surprising news that he had 
married a squaw." 

Ramona, as related in the story, was the 
child of this marriage. When a babe, Angus 
Phail, her father, gave her to the object of his 
early devotion, Ramona Gonzaga Ortegna, who 
was childless. 

Soon afterward Angus died, and to the 
foster-mother of Ramona, Sefiora Ortegna, 
came an Indian messenger from San Gabriel, 
bearing a box and a letter, given him by Angus 
the day before his death. " The box contained 

[I47l 



>. THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

jewels of value, of fashions a quarter of a cen- 
tury old. They were the jewels which Angus 
had bought for his bride." The note read: 
"I send you all I have to leave my daughter. 
I meant to bring them myself this year. I 
wished to kiss your hands and hers once more. 
But I am dying. Farewell." 

Thus Mrs. Jackson laid the origin of the 
Ramona jewels. 

" After these jewels were in her possession, 
Senora Ortegna rested not until she had per- 
suaded Senora Moreno to journey to Monterey, 
and put the box into her keeping as a sacred 
trust. She also won from her a solemn prom- 
ise that at her own death she would adopt 
the little Ramona. . . . One hour after the 
funeral . . . Senora Moreno, leading the little 
four-year-old Ramona by the hand, left the 
house, and early the next morning set sail for 
home." 

Hugo Reid, whom we assert to be the origi- 
nal of Angus Phail, passed a part of his early 
life in Mexico, and there had an affair of the 
heart that shaped his future. In 1834, when 
twenty-three years old, he went to Los An- 
geles and became a merchant. He married an 
Indian woman at San Gabriel, Dona Victoria, 
said to have possessed both good looks and 



* THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA Jt 

wealth. Of this marriage three children were 
born, one of them, a daughter, famed for in- 
telligence and beauty. Her name was Ignacia, 
but she was commonly called " Nacha," or 
"Nachita." The Coronels told Mrs. Jackson 
the story of Hugo Reid, his marriage to 
the Indian woman, and of Ignacia, and she 
became so much interested in the facts 
that she planned to write another story, 
similar to that of " Ramona," and entitle it 
" Nacha." 

Hugo Reid at one time was a ship-captain. 
He was the owner of the Esmeralda, burned 
at San Pedro in 1842. He brought home from 
ocean voyages many costly and beautiful 
things diamonds, strings of pearls, silks and 
shawls. He had been jilted in Mexico, and 
left there with the avowal to marry someone 
bearing the name of the woman to whom he 
was a victim, Victoria; "even though she be 
an Indian," he said. 

He possessed fine literary tastes, and made 
the Indians a special study, upon which sub- 
ject he wrote extensively, his writings gaining 
circulation in the East and attracting general 
attention. There is now in the possession of 
Miss Annie B. Picher, Pasadena, an extensive 
manuscript of Hugo Reid upon the Mission In- 

[149] 



y, THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA Jt 

dians, of great interest, which has never been 
published. 

A letter from Mrs. Jackson to Sefior and 
Sefiora de Coronel, written at Boston, contains 
this reference to the original of Angus Phail: 
" The Hugo Reid letters I saw at the Bancroft 
Library, though I did not find much in them 
which I could use in my very limited space." 

Thus is evidenced how Mrs. Jackson founded 
her story of " Ramona " on living persons and 
real facts. The Ramona jewels and silks did 
exist, but they were not the gems and rich 
fabrics of Hugo Reid. As heretofore related 
in these pages, they were the identical treas- 
ures of great beauty and value collected by 
Captain U. Yndart, a sea-faring man, of Santa 
Barbara, grandfather of Blanca Yndart, who, 
with the jewels, at the death of her mother, 
was given into the keeping of Dona Ysabel 
del Valle, mistress of Camulos ranch. This 
beautiful and intelligent girl was to Mrs. Jack- 
son the inspiration of her " Ramona." 

The Ranch Servants 

At the time of Mrs. Jackson's visit to Camu- 
los ranch there were such a number of house 

and ranch servants, of varied ages, types and 

[150] 




DOOR LEADING TO GRAVEYARD, SANTA BARBARA 
MISSION 




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4t THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

characteristics, that numerous characters could 
have been readily selected by the author. Na- 
turally she gave to them fictitious names. 

There was a head shepherd, Juan Canito, an 
upper herdsman of the cattle, Juan Jose, and 
Luigo, " the lazy shepherd." And there were 
the house servants: Margarita, the "youngest 
and prettiest of the maids," her mother, Marda, 
the old cook, Anita and Maria, twins, Rosa, and 
Anita "the little," and Juanita, oldest of the 
house servants, " silly, good for nothing except 
to shell beans." 

There were a number of shepherd dogs on 
the ranch, any one of which could have been 
identified as Capitan, Juan Canito's favorite 
collie, the same that followed Alessandro and 
Ramona in their wanderings. 

Mrs. Hartsel 

On departing from Camulos ranch Ales- 
sandro and Ramona directed their journey to 
Temecula, Alessandro's old home. The In- 
dians had but recently been ejected from that 
village, and Alessandro's father, Chief Pablo 
Assis, was dead. There remained only ruin 
and devastation to mark the site of the Indian 
settlement, save Alessandro's home, and sev- 

[151] 



*t STORY OF RAMONA & 

eral others, too good for the white invaders 
to destroy, and Hartsel's store. The rare vio- 
lin of Alessandro's father had been placed with 
Mrs. Hartsel for safe keeping. Alessandro 
planned to see her and secure money from its 
sale. He had his own violin with him, through 
the thoughtfulness of Ramona, who took it 
from Felipe's room the night of her escape 
from Sefiora Moreno's. "What would life be 
to Alessandro without a violin?" she said. 

Mrs. Hartsel was the wife of Jim Hartsel, 
the storekeeper at Temecula. " Hartsel's was 
one of those mongrel establishments to be seen 
nowhere except in Southern California. Half 
shop, half farm, half tavern, it gathered up to 
itself all the threads of the life of the whole 
region. Indians, ranchmen, travelers of all 
sorts, traded at Hartsel's, drank at Hartsel's, 
slept at Hartsel's." The description of Han- 
sel's store and dwelling as given in " Ramona " 
is true to life. 

Alessandro succeeded in reaching Mrs. Hart- 
sel's kitchen early in the night unobserved, 
while Ramona awaited him with the horses at 
the cemetery. This good woman, a friend of 
the Indians, who knew and admired Alessan- 
dro, readily responded to the offer to sell his 
father's violin. But Jim, her husband, was 






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en 



^ THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA t 

drunk, and no barter could be made with him; 
and so Mrs. Hartsel took from her purse four 
five-dollar gold pieces and gave them to Ales- 
sandro as a loan, saying, " I'll give you 
what money you need to-night, and then, if 
you say so, Jim'll sell the violin to-morrow, 
if that man wants it, and you can pay me 
back." 

"At Temecula, from Mrs. Hartsel, Felipe 
got the first true intelligence of Alessandro's 
movements," when he was endeavoring, after 
Senora Moreno's death, to locate him. Mrs. 
Hartsel had known nothing of Ramona, or that 
anyone was accompanying Alessandro when he 
visited her on the violin errand. 

This kindly woman is one of the striking 
characters of " Ramona," and it is interesting 
to know who she really was. The question 
may be correctly answered: she was Ramona 
Wolfe, whose husband kept the "mongrel es- 
tablishment," store, inn and saloon at Temecula. 
He was a Frenchman. His wife is said to 
have been a half-breed; her father French. 
Because she bore the name of Ramona she, 
too, has been accepted by many as the original 
of that character in the romance. Mrs. Jack- 
son met Mrs. Wolfe at Temecula and was 
deeply impressed by her romantic life and her 

[153] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

sterling worth, and especially because of her 
friendship for the Indians. 

Father Antonio Peyri 

Father Antonio Peyri was a living person. 
He was the devoted Franciscan who built the 
chapel and campanile at San Luis Rey Mis- 
sion. He and Pablo Assis, Alessandro's father, 
were close friends. Alessandro is made to say: 
" Father Peyri was like a father to all his In- 
dians. My father says that they would all of 
them lie down in a fire for him, if he had com- 
manded it." 

Father Peyri introduced the beautiful pepper 
tree into California, and with his own hands 
planted the first of these trees in the State at 
San Luis Rey Mission. 

In her story of " Father Junipero and His 
Work," to be found in " Glimpses of California 
and the Missions," Mrs. Jackson thus wrote of 
Father Peyri: 

" Under the new regime the friars suffered 
hardly less than the Indians. Some fled the 
country, unable to bear the humiliations and 
hardships of their positions under the control 
of the administrators or majors-domo, and de- 
pendent on their caprice for shelter and even 

[154] 



X 

w 

xT 

I 








FATHER ANTHONY UBACH, 

Father Gaspara of " Ramona." San Diego Mission, who married 
Alessandro and Ramona: Photographed while reading service 
over victims of the Bennington disaster, San Diego, June, 1906. 
" When fresh outrages (against the Indians) were brought to 
his notice, he paced his room, plucked fiercely at his black beard, 
with ejaculations, it is to be feared, savoring more of the camp 
than the altar." " Ramona." 



>, STORY OF RAMONA * 

for food. Among this number was Father An- 
tonio Peyri, who had been for over thirty years 
in charge of the splendid Mission of San Luis 
Rey. In 1800, two years after its founding, 
this Mission had 369 Indians. In 1827 it had 
2,685; it owned over twenty thousand head of 
cattle, and nearly twenty thousand sheep. It 
controlled over two hundred thousand acres 
of land, and there were raised in its fields in 
one year three thousand bushels of wheat, six 
thousand of barley and ten thousand of corn. 
No other Mission had so fine a church. It was 
one hundred and sixty feet long, fifty wide and 
sixty high, with walls four feet thick. A 
tower at one side held a belfry for eight bells. 
The corridor on the opposite side had two 
hundred and fifty-six arches. Its gold and 
silver ornaments are said to have been superb. 
"When Father Peyri made up his mind to 
leave the country, he slipped off by night to 
San Diego, hoping to escape without the In- 
dians' knowledge. But, missing him in the 
morning, and knowing only too well what it 
meant, five hundred of them mounted their 
ponies in hot haste, and galloped all the way 
to San Diego, forty-five miles, to bring him 
back by force. They arrived just as the ship, 
with Father Peyri on board, was weighing 

[155! 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

anchor. Standing on the deck, with out- 
stretched arms, he blessed them, amid their 
tears and loud cries. Some flung themselves 
into the water and swam after the ship. Four 
reached it, and clinging to its side, so implored 
to be taken that the father consented, and car- 
ried them with him to Rome, where one of 
them became a priest." 

Father Gaspara 

Father Gaspara is named in the romance 
as the priest at San Diego Mission who mar- 
ried Alessandro and Ramona. The original of 
this character was Father Anthony Ubach, in 
charge of the San Diego Mission at the time 
of Mrs. Jackson's visit there. He was a sin- 
cere friend to the Mission Indians, and en- 
deared himself to Mrs. Jackson accordingly. 

This good Father was born in Barcelona. 
He came to California in 1860, and was sta- 
tioned first at San Luis Obispo. In 1868 he 
moved to San Diego, and located in what is 
now known as " Old Town." He undertook 
the erection of a church there, but failed, his 
effort being thus related by Mrs. Jackson in 
" Ramona " : "A few paces off from his door 
stood the just begun walls of a fine brick 

[156] 



Jt THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

church, which it had been the dream and pride 
of his heart to see builded and full of worship- 
ers. This, too, had failed. ... To build a 
church on the ground where Father Junipero 
first trod and labored would be a work to which 
no Catholic could be indifferent. . . . The 
sight of these silent walls, only a few feet 
high, was a sore one to Father Gaspara a 
daily cross, which he did not find grow lighter 
as he paced up and down his veranda, year in 
and year out, in the balmy winter and cool 
summer of that magic climate." 

These same brick walls, about five feet 
high, stand to-day just as Mrs. Jackson saw 
and described them. 

In a letter to the Coronels, written Novem- 
ber 8, 1883, which gave an outline of her pro- 
posed novel, " Ramona," Mrs. Jackson said : " I 
have written to Father Ubach and to Mr. 
Morse of San Diego for their reminiscences." 

In " Glimpses of California and the Mis- 
sions " is this incident described by Mrs. Jack- 
son, the priest mentioned being Father Ubach: 
" In the winter of 1882 I visited the San Pas- 
quale valley. I drove over from San Diego 
with the Catholic priest, who goes there three 
or four Sundays in a year to hold service in a 
little adobe chapel built by the Indians in the 

[157] 



> STORY OF RAMONA + 

days of their prosperity. . . . The Catholic 
priest of San Diego is much beloved by them. 
He has been their friend for many years. 
When he goes to hold service, they gather 
from their various hiding-places and refuges; 
sometimes, on a special fete day, over two 
hundred come. But on the day I was there, 
the priest being a young man who was a 
stranger to them, only a few were present. 
... In front of the chapel, on a rough cross- 
beam supported by two forked posts, set awry 
in the ground, swung a bell bearing the date 
of 1770. It was one of the bells of the old 
San Diego Mission. Standing bareheaded, the 
priest rang it long and loud: he rang it sev- 
eral times before the leisurely groups that were 
plainly to be seen in doorways or on roadsides 
bestirred themselves to make any haste to 



come." 



Father Ubach wore a full beard, having re- 
ceived papal permission for, the privilege, be- 
cause of throat trouble. 

Aunt Ri 

The dear, sweet soul, with the Tennessee 
vernacular, Aunt Ri, who, with Jeff Hyer, her 
husband, rescued Alessandro, Ramona and 

[158] 




MRS. JORDAN, AUXT RI OF "RAMOXA" 

" Shaw, Jos ! You tell her I ain't any lady. Tell her every- 
body around here where I live calls me ' Aunt Ri.' " " Ramona." 




SAM TEMPLE, THE "JIM FARRAR" OF " RAMOXA," 

Who killed Juan Diego, and whose tragic death Mrs. Jackson 
gave to the end of her hero, Alessandro. " Then with a volley 
of oaths. * * * leaping into his saddle * * *. as he rode away, 
he shook his fist at Ramona, who was kneeling * * * striving 
to lift Alessandro's head, and to staunch the blood flowing from 
the ghastly wounds." " Ramona." 



* THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

their child from the snow storm, was Mrs. 
Jordan. She was thoroughly familiar with the 
killing of Juan Diego by Sam Temple, which 
furnished Mrs. Jackson the information used in 
telling of the tragic death of Alessandro by 
Jim Farrar. 

She knew Juan Diego, his wife, now known 
as Ramona Lubo, and Sam Temple. It was 
she who persuaded Juan Diego to remain at 
her place over night, because of the long jour- 
ney to his home in the mountain. In the 
morning Sam Temple told her someone had 
stolen his horse, and when she saw Juan's 
little pony in the corral she said she'd " bet 
anything that Juan took it when he had a 
spell on." 

Juan Diego and his wife had a sick child. 
The latter was taken to Mrs. Jordan's home, 
and she gave medicine to it. When it died 
Mrs. Jordan tore boards from her barn to make 
a coffin for the dead infant. 

These facts were related to Mrs. Jackson 
by Mrs. Jordan, as well as by Miss Sheriff, the 
Indian school teacher, now Mrs. Fowler, and 
are made a striking part of the " Ramona " 
story. 



[159] 



>. THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

Jim Farrar 

In a former chapter has been related the 
facts attending the brutal murder of a " locoed " 
Indian, named Juan Diego, by Sam Temple, 
whose horse the Indian had taken from a cor- 
ral at San Jacinto. This tragedy was first 
given to the public by Mrs. Jackson in her 
" Century of Dishonor," and constituted a part 
of her report upon the Mission Indians to the 
Interior Department. 

The death of Alessandro, as portrayed in 
" Ramona," was under the identical circum- 
stances attending the murder of Juan Diego. 
It was this tragedy that gave to Mrs. Jack- 
son the facts which she used in describing the 
death of her hero, Alessandro. 

Sam Temple, the murderer, was the Jim 
Farrar of " Ramona." He never denied killing 
the Indian but asserted that he did it in self- 
defense. The story as substantially told by 
him was, that when he missed one of his finest 
horses, a beautiful black, from the corral at 
Hewett's, in San Jacinto, he concluded that 
it had been taken by an Indian; that he bor- 
rowed a shotgun, loaded both barrels with 
buckshot, and in addition took with him a six- 
shooter; that he followed the tracks of the 

[160] 



* THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

missing horse up the mountains, riding nearly 
all day, when he arrived at the home of Juan 
Diego, and there found his horse tied to a 
tree; that he alighted from his horse, when 
Juan's wife appeared and asked what he 
wanted; that he told her he had come for his 
horse, when Juan appeared at the door; that he 
inquired of the Indian where he had gotten 
the horse, and the answer was, " at Sefior 
Hewett's corral"; that he asked the Indian if 
he did not know that the horse was not his, 
to which the Indian replied, " yes " ; that dur- 
ing the conversation he and the Indian were 
approaching each other, when suddenly the In- 
dian drew a long-bladed knife; that he told 
the Indian to stop, when the latter made a 
lunge at him, and thereupon he pulled both 
triggers of his gun as it rested on his arm; 
that he afterwards found that he had put sixty- 
seven buckshot clear through the Indian, but 
it did not stop him at the moment, as the In- 
dian still struck at him; that he used his gun as 
a club, breaking the stock on the Indian's head, 
who fell to the ground, but that such was the 
Indian's determination that even then he struck 
at Temple several times with the knife; that 
then, he, Temple, shot at the Indian three times 
with his revolver. 

[161] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

Temple was released on his preliminary hear- 
ing before a justice of the peace, and there his 
prosecution for the brutal crime ended. 

Temple never evinced the least regret be- 
cause of his dastardly act, but boasted that he 
had rid the country of a dangerous horse thief. 
He was so elated over his crime and its pub- 
lication in " Ramona " that he endeavored to 
secure financial assistance, that he might place 
himself on public exhibition, as " the man who 
killed Alessandro." 

Temple was also a wife-beater. His wife 
had complained to the city marshal of San 
Jacinto as to her husband's brutal treatment of 
her, and the marshal warned him not to re- 
peat the offense; but Sam again abused his 
wife shamefully, her cries arousing the neigh- 
bors, who sent for the marshal. The marshal 
sent a deputy, a Kentuckian, who for many 
years had been a Pinkerton detective, with in- 
structions to arrest Temple. It was at night 
when the constable approached Temple's house, 
and Sam called out to know who was there. 
He had already sent word to the marshal that 
he would not be taken alive and would shoot 
anyone who attempted to arrest him. McKim, 
the constable, said, " It is me, Sam. I have got 
to arrest you and I am going to take you dead 

[162] 



*t THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

or alive." Instantly there was a shot from 
Temple's revolver, which was without effect. 
Quick as a flash the constable returned the 
shot, striking Sam's arm and badly injuring it. 
Immediately Sam yelled out that he had had 
enough. The constable ordered him to throw 
out his gun and to stand clear in the light, and 
throw up his hands. The order was obeyed. 
McKim took Sam to the jail, had his arm ban- 
daged and locked him up. 

Temple last lived at Yuma, Arizona, where 
he died in 1909. 

Judge Wells 

Judge Tripp, the justice of the peace at San 
Jacinto, before whom Sam Temple had his pre- 
liminary hearing under the charge of killing 
Juan Diego, is the Judge Wells of " Ramona." 
Mrs. Jackson thus wrote of him: "Judge Wells 
was a frontiersman, and by no means sentimen- 
tally inclined; but the tears stood in his eyes 
as he looked at the unconscious Ramona." 

Judge Wells is another of the characters of 
" Ramona " drawn from life. 



[163] 



CHAPTER XIV 

DOflA MARIANA DE CORONEL THE CORONEL 
COLLECTION BISHOP AMAT SAINT VIBIANA'S 
CATHEDRAL DON ANTONIO AND GENERAL 
KEARNEY LETTERS OF MRS. JACKSON TO THE 
CORONELS 

IN 1 900 Dona Mariana de Coronel, the inti- 
mate friend of Mrs. Jackson, bade farewell 
to Los Angeles, intending to spend her de- 
clining years in Old Mexico, which, in the days 
of peace and prosperity and contentment, she 
often had visited with Don Antonio, her hus- 
band. 

As a maiden she had spent many happy years 
in the old pueblo that clustered about the Los 
Angeles Plaza, knowing everybody, known to 
all, beloved by everybody. Years of unalloyed 
bliss followed as the mistress of " El Recreo," 
the ideal Spanish abode that Don Antonio had 
builded amidst the orange trees in the broad 
grant made by the Mexican Government to his 
father and descended to him, not far from the 
sloping banks of the Los Angeles River, and 
what now would be near the corner of Seventh 
Street and Central Avenue; although it is 

[164] 



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STATUARY WORK OF SESORA 
DE CORONEL 

Part of the Coroncl Collection, Chamber of Com- 
merce, Los Angeles. 



* THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

doubtful if even Dona Mariana herself could 
indicate the precise location of the historical 
hacienda, so confusing are the lines of what 
has by common consent come to be called 
" civilization." 

Mixed must have been the memories that 
crowded in upon Dona Mariana as she with- 
drew from the scenes of her childhood and set 
her face to the southward. It had been her 
purpose to locate at or near Guadalajara, and 
there duplicate the hacienda that, as her hos- 
pitable home for so many years, had come to be 
so prominent a landmark in Los Angeles, a 
home that had sheltered every prominent per- 
son of every nationality who had visited the 
pueblo during Spanish, Mexican and American 
occupation. 

Were this a history, which it is not intended 
to be, many chapters would need to be devoted 
to accounts of what Dona Mariana and her 
distinguished husband had done for Los An- 
geles. It must suffice to make reference to one 
of the latest generous acts of Dona Mariana, 
the gift to the Los Angeles Chamber of Com- 
merce of the wonderful Coronel Collection, com- 
prehending relics and curios she and her hus- 
band had been fifty years in assembling, and 
which constitute the chief attraction of the 

[165] 



^ THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA 

Chamber of Commerce. Days and weeks could 
be profitably spent in examining this collec- 
tion, the ensemble in itself constituting a very 
comprehensive history of the State of Cali- 
fornia, from the days of Junipero Serra down 
to the present era, and including articles asso- 
ciated with Helen Hunt Jackson and " Ra- 



mona." 



Interest in the collection is greatly enhanced 
by the knowledge of the fact that many of the 
more interesting articles were the product of 
the genius and skill of Don Antonio and Dona 
Mariana themselves. Conspicuous among the 
latter are the figures of a Spanish woman and 
man, mounted upon gorgeously caparisoned 
steeds for which the State was at the time 
famous, both figures attired in full Spanish cos- 
tumes, faithful to history, with not an item 
omitted. Near by is a miniature of San Luis 
Rey Mission building, walls and grounds, as 
seen before the days of secularization. 

There are sketches in black and white and in 
oil, all of rare merit, and parchments of price- 
less value. Conspicuous among the curios is 
the little mahogany table, ordered made by Don 
Antonio for the special convenience and com- 
fort of Helen Hunt Jackson in her literary 
work, after the unfortunate mishap that crip- 

[166] 



>, STORY OF RAMONA > 

pled her for life and made it difficult for her 
to write except in a reclining position. 

In this collection is the first cannon brought 
to California, of which Mrs. Jackson thus 
wrote in " Glimpses of California and the Mis- 
sions": "The place of honor in the room is 
given, as well it might be, to a small cannon, 
the first cannon brought into California. It 
was made in 1717, and was brought by Father 
Junipero Serra to San Diego in 1769. After- 
ward it was given to the San Gabriel Mission; 
but it still bears its old name, * San Diego.' It 
is an odd little arm, only about two feet long, 
and requiring but six ounces of powder. Its 
swivel is made with a rest to set firm in the 
ground. It has taken many long journeys on 
the backs of mules, having been in great 
requisition in the early Mission days for the 
firing of salutes at festivals and feasts." 

The future historian, let us hope, will do at 
least partial justice to the far-sighted wisdom 
and the broad generosity of Don Antonio and 
Dona Mariana in patiently assembling this 
unique collection, from all quarters of the globe, 
and at such sacrifice as no one ever will know, 
and presenting it as a free gift to Los Angeles, 
when a king's ransom would have been paid for 
it, had she been content with its removal hence. 

[167] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

Appearances are deceptive. Things are not 
always what they seem. Guadalajara may have 
been as beautiful as Dona Mariana in her mind's 
eye had pictured it. But travel farther into 
the interior satisfied her that other places, and 
for a variety of reasons, were more desirable 
as a place of ultimate residence, and when the 
City of Oaxaca was reached Guadalajara lost 
the opportunity of securing a rare acquisition. 

Although remote from the capital and from 
centers of so-called civilization, easily one 
hundred and fifty miles from railway connec- 
tions, Oaxaca, in the judgment of Dona Mari- 
ana, is the garden spot of the earth, to which 
she will joyfully return when the strife in the 
Republic shall have ceased. 

Senora Coronel came north in August of 
1912, and has been dividing her time between 
relatives in Los Angeles and its environs. 

The land holdings of Dona Mariana in the 
State of Oaxaca are not measured by varas 
or by acres. Their hacienda is so many leagues 
in one direction by so many leagues in an- 
other. Poor indeed would be the landlord the 
limits of whose hacienda could be measured 
by the eye. " Oh, we know nothing about 
acres," said Dona Mariana. " If a man has 
land for sale it is so much for 4 the piece/ and 

[168] 




DON ANTONIO DE CORONEL AND HIS WIFE, MARI- 
ANA. (Permission of Miss Annie B. Picker, Pasadena.) 

" A beautiful young Mexican woman. * * * Her clear, olive 
skin, soft brown eyes, delicate, sensitive nostrils, and broad, 
smiling mouth, are all of the Spanish Madonna type; and when 
her low brow is bound * * * by turban folds * * * her face 
becomes a picture indeed. She is the young wife of a gray- 
headed Mexican, Senor Don Antonio." (Mrs. Jackson in 
" Glimpses of California and the Missions.") 




THE FIRST CANNON BROUGHT INTO CALIFORNIA 

Don Antonio de Coronet and the first cannon in California, 
brought by Father Junipero Serra in 1769. 



> STORY OF RAMONA & 

' the piece ' may contain five, ten, or twenty 
thousand acres, as you measure land up here. 
The vendor is quite indifferent; he doesn't seem 
to care a rap whether you buy or not, unless 
he happens to take a fancy to the would-be 
purchaser. In that event the price cuts little 
figure; it is usually quite normal, and coupled 
with the condition that the buyer build near to 
him, his companionship appearing to be more 
valued than his dollars. It is a life of ease and 
of contentment. Human labor there is so cheap 
that one becomes accustomed to constant and 
perfect service. Where help can be obtained 
in abundance for ten cents a day there is not 
much occasion for one to exert himself physic- 
ally. The peon in Mexico, like the black man 
in the South in ante-bellum days, is ever at 
hand to brush off the flies." 

What is fairer than a day in June in 
Southern California! On the expansive porch 
of " El Retrio," Covina suburban villa of Mr. 
C. D. Griffiths, were that gentleman and his 
wife, a niece of Sefiora de Coronel, and grand- 
niece Eileen; Mrs. Ellen Pollard, a sister of 
Sefiora de Coronel; Mrs. Earle, another sister, 
her husband and three children. 

And there were Ramona and Alessandro. 
No, on reflection, it must be admitted those 

[169] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

characters were not present, though it al- 
ways seems as if they are when Dona Mariana 
is about. 

Mrs. Jackson usually kept standing on her 
desk an unframed photograph after Dante 
Rossetti two heads, a man's and a woman's, 
set in a nimbus of clouds, with a strange and 
beautiful regard and meaning in their eyes. 
They were exactly her idea of what Ramona 
and Alessandro looked like. The characters of 
the novel, she thought, came nearer to material- 
ization in this photograph than in any other 
way. 

And so with Dona Mariana. It is difficult 
to disassociate her from the characters she 
helped so much to create. 

It was distinctly a home scene. Mrs. Grif- 
fiths had sent the writer this note: "My aunt 
wishes me to ask you and your wife to visit 
her here at Covina this coming Sunday. If 
you will let us know on what car to expect 
you, Mr. Griffiths will meet you at Citrus Ave- 
nue. If convenient to you, we would like to 
have you come and spend the day with my 
aunt." 

It was most convenient and we spent a day. 
the memories of which will only fade with loss 
of consciousness. 

[170] 



>, STORY OF RAMONA & 

" How did it happen that you and the Don 
did not accompany Mrs. Jackson on her jour- 
ney to the Indian villages? " she was asked. 
" It had been so arranged," she answered, 
"but I became too ill to go, and my husband 
did not feel like leaving me alone for so long 
a period." 

Senora de Coronel told many interesting 
stories during the day. The one concerning 
Bishop Thaddeus Amat and Saint Vibiana's 
Cathedral in Los Angeles being of special in- 
terest, is here retold: 

"It will sound more like a romance than 
reality," said Dona Mariana. " Bishop Thad- 
deus Amat was the parish priest in Los Angeles 
when Father Mora was Bishop of Los Angeles 
and Monterey. He was a good man, oh, one 
of the noblest of God's creatures. The spiritual 
welfare of his flock, the material as well as the 
spiritual welfare of the Indians he thought of 
naught else. It was he who built Saint Vibi- 
ana's Cathedral at the corner of Second and 
Main streets. The building of that cathedral 
had been the ambition of his life. It is an 
interesting and a pathetic story. I am told it 
is the purpose soon to build another and a 
larger cathedral elsewhere. I suppose it will be 
done before long, that ground having become 

[171] 



* STORY OF RAMONA * 

so valuable for business purposes; but it will 
be a great pity to tear it down. I shall hope 
never to see it done. 

" Bishop Amat was a poor peasant in Italy, 
a sheepherder. When quite young he told his 
parents he had had a dream, a dream that he 
was a priest and had built a great cathedral 
to a Saint. Soon after he had the same dream, 
and when it was repeated the third time, his 
mother, thinking it a very strange circum- 
stance, told the story to her parish priest. 
That worthy was much affected by the rela- 
tion, and asked that the child be brought to 
him. He was found to be unusually intelli- 
gent, and especially informed regarding re- 
ligious matters. He had improved his time 
while attending his sheep in reading church 
history, and was indeed so precocious that the 
priest declared he must be given greater oppor- 
tunities for storing his mind with knowledge. 
He was sent to Rome and studied for the priest- 
hood, and in time was ordained and sent to 
America. Not long after his arrival in this 
country he was assigned to the Los Angeles 
diocese. 

" While serving as the parish priest here, 
when Bishop Mora was in charge of the dio- 
cese, Bishop Amat had occasion to visit Rome. 



n 

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n 



CO 

n co 

II 





8 
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Q 

! 





FRONT VIEW OF ST. VIBIANA'S CATHEDRAL, 
LOS ANGELES 



^ STORY OF RAMONA & 

While there he went to the catacombs, and 
there witnessed the opening of the casket con- 
taining the remains of Saint Vibiana. She was 
a child Saint, you know, and the casket was 
small, bound about with brass hoops. Ex- 
posed to view the features for the moment 
were seen to be precisely as in life, her childish 
beauty in no way changed, but exposure to the 
air had the inevitable and almost immediate 
effect everything disappeared but the bare 
skeleton. 

"Bishop Amat was much affected by what 
he had seen. He begged that the skeleton of 
Vibiana be given to him, promising that if it 
were placed in his charge he would bring it 
to America and build a great cathedral, which 
would be named for the Saint and dedicated 
to her memory. 

"Returning here he at once began the 
work. Large contributions were offered to 
him, but all these were refused. He wanted 
the church built with the offerings of the com- 
mon people. And so it came about. The 
money poured in from all quarters, and soon 
he had enough in the treasury to warrant the 
building of the Cathedral of Saint Vibiana. 

" In the upper part of the altar is a crypt in 
which are deposited the remains of the Saint, in 

[173] 



Jt THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

the little brass-bound casket in which they were 
brought from Rome. Under the altar are the 
remains of Bishop Amat. 

" Would it not seem sacrilege ever to remove 
them? When the church was dedicated Bishop 
Amat told the congregation that he had a story 
rather than a sermon to deliver, and recited 
the facts substantially as here given. 

" After this great work was achieved Bishop 
Amat undertook another worthy enterprise, in 
the north. In the charming valley in which is 
situated the Carmelo Mission he secured a con- 
siderable tract of land which he intended to 
use as a school for Indian boys, to teach them 
agriculture. But before his arrangements for 
this were completed the sale of the land was 
negotiated to a syndicate of white men. Bishop 
Amat of course objected, and the Indians pro- 
tested. The chiefs of all the Indian villages 
were asked to sign a certain paper. Before 
signing they brought it to me, and I advised 
them not to sign it, or any other paper without 
first submitting it to Don Antonio. The paper 
was a quit-claim to the water rights to all 
their lands. Had they signed the instrument 
their lands would have become worthless. It 
would have left them without a drop of water 
for irrigating purposes. 

174] 



y, THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA J^ 

" Bishop Amat died in prayer. An attendant, 
thinking it time he should retire, gently and 
hesitatingly approached the old man, as, upon 
his prayer rug in front of the altar at the 
Church of Saint Vibiana, he was supposed to 
be counting his beads and repeating his invo- 
cations. Passing the altar, some time there- 
after, he found the devoted old man still in the 
posture of heavenly supplication. Aged and 
feeble, weak and emaciated, the attendant felt 
the duty doubly incumbent upon him of with- 
drawing him hence to his chamber, for rest 
he so much needed. This time he was a trifle 
more insistent, but his solicitude was quite 
needless; Bishop Amat was rigid in death!" 

On the slab which enclosed the crypt in 
which the body of Vibiana was found were 
these Latin words: "Animas innocenti atque 
pudicae Vibiana in pace depositae pridie Kalen- 
das Septembris" ; the translation of which is, 
" To the innocent and chaste soul of Vibiana, 
whose remains were deposited in peace on the 
day before the Calends of September." 

On the exterior of St. Vibiana's Cathedral are 
these letters, " D.O.M.," being the abbreviations 
for "Deo Optimo Maximo," which means, " To 
God the Greatest and Best." Also the sentence, 
" Dicata A.D. 1876," signifying the date when 

175] 



Jt STORY OF RAMONA * 

the Cathedral was dedicated, and the words, 
"Su6 Invocatione Sanctae Vibianae Virginis et 
Martyris," the translation of which is, " Under 
the Invocation of Saint Vibiana, Virgin and 
Martyr." 

" Don Antonio," said Dona Mariana, " was 
loyal to the Church, but he ever was friendly 
with the Indians. He had good reason for 
being true to them, for upon more than one oc- 
casion they had saved his life. 

" Don Antonio de Coronel was one of the 
liberal contributors to the erection of Saint 
Vibiana's Cathedral, and materially aided in its 
construction and establishment. A special part 
of his donation was a number of thousands 
of the brick which went into the building. He 
was buried from this Cathedral. 

" No," said Senora de Coronel, " it is not as 
you suppose. I am no longer attached to Los 
Angeles. It is not as it used to be. I am anx- 
ious to return to Mexico, where conditions are 
much as they were here fifty years ago. But I 
fear it will be a long time before normal condi- 
tions are restored. Porfirio Diaz is a much 
abused and a much misunderstood man. He 
best knew how to rule Mexico. He knew every 
renegade in the country, and how to handle the 

warring factions. I fear it will be a long time 

[176] 




THE ALTAR, ST. VIBIANA'S CATHEDRAL, 
LOS ANGELES 

In the niche, in the upper part, is the casket containing the 
remains of St. Vibiana. Under the altar are the remains of 
Bishop Thaddeus Amat, builder of the Cathedral. 




X 



O 

S 
u 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA y, 

before peace is restored. Few know the real 
cause of the factional division of the country. 
Nearly all the women in Mexico are true to 
the Church, while most of the men are Masons; 
hence the irrepressible conflict. I am glad 
Senator del Valle has been sent down there 
to harmonize the factions. He may not suc- 
ceed; but he is more likely to do so than any 
American ambassador. 

" No, I do not believe the Coronel Collection 
will be removed from the Chamber of Com- 
merce. That seems to be the best place for 
it, the place where the larger number of peo- 
ple can conveniently see it. There was but a 
single condition of its gift to the city: that no 
item in the collection should ever be disposed 
of by sale, gift or otherwise. It must always 
be kept intact, just as it was when I turned 
it over to the city. 

" I never met Mr. Jackson. It never seemed 
convenient for me to visit Mrs. Jackson at her 
Colorado home, although frequently beseeched 
to do so. I knew of her wish to be buried upon 
the slopes of Cheyenne Mountain. There were 
few things about Mrs. Jackson I did not know, 
for we were like sisters. When the site of 
her grave came to be a public picnic ground, 
and Mr. Jackson began to feel the necessity 

[177] 



^ THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

of removing her remains, he wrote me, asking 
if his wife had ever expressed a willingness to 
be buried elsewhere. I knew the reason for 
her peculiar request, and wrote to him about 
it, leaving him to draw his own inferences and 
act upon his own judgment. It was due wholly 
to the neglect and desecration of the grave of 
Junipero Serra that Mrs. Jackson decided upon 
a burial spot upon the mountain she loved so 
much. She never dreamed it would become a 
public resort. I was glad when I learned that 
she rested peacefully at Evergreen Cemetery, 
Colorado Springs." 

Senora de Coronel has permitted the authors 
to read the numerous letters written by Mrs. 
Jackson to her and Don Antonio, her husband, 
and to publish the following, selected for the 
purpose. It will aid to understand the letters 
to here again state that " Ramona " was written 
in New York during the winter of 1883-84, 
and Mrs. Jackson returned to California in the 
latter part of 1884, went to San Francisco in 
April, 1885, and there died August i2th of that 
year. 



[ITS] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

Santa Barbara, Cal., 

January 30, 1882. 
My Dear Friends, Mr. and Mrs. Coronel: 

... I have now been one week in Santa 
Barbara, and am still homesick for Los An- 
geles. I have not as yet seen anything so fine 
as the San Gabriel Valley, and San Bernardino 
Mountains with the snows on the tops, and I 
have not found any one to tell me the things 
of the olden time so eloquently as you did. 

I have seen Father Sanchez, Father 
O'Keefe and Father Francis, at the Mission, 
and have obtained from their library some 
books of interest. From the west window of 
my room I look out on the Mission buildings. 
The sun rests on them from sunrise to sunset, 
and they seem to me to say more than any 
human voice on record can convey. You will 
perhaps have heard that I was so unfortunate 
as not to find Mrs. del Valle at home, so I 
only rested two hours at her house and drove 
on to Santa Barbara that night. I saw some 
of the curious old relics, but the greater part 
of them were locked up, and Mrs. del Valle had 
the keys with her. 

The most interesting part of my journey 
was San Fernando. There I could spend a 
whole day, and I must tell you of a mistake 

179] 



y. THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA ^ 

I made; perhaps if you see Mr. Pico you can 
rectify it for me. He said to me, when he 
was showing me some of the relics they have, 
" Now, if you like, you can take some one of 
these things." Of course I desired very much 
to have some of them; but I replied, merely 
out of the wish not to seem greedy or ungrate- 
ful, " Oh, you are too kind to think of such a 
thing. I am afraid you ought not to give away 
any of them. Do you not rather prefer to keep 
them for the Church? " And then he did not 
again offer them to me, and I was all the rest 
of the time waiting and hoping that he would; 
but I came away without having the oppor- 
tunity again to take anything. I suppose you 
wil! think I was very stupid. Indeed, I think 
so myself; but it is partly that I do not under- 
stand the customs of the Spanish people in 
regard to such things. 

If it should happen that you see any of the 
family, you can tell them of my regret for 
having made such a mistake, and that I would 
be very glad to have anything they would like 
to part with. One of the old candlesticks I 
would very much like to have, or one of the 
old books of St. Augustine I had in my own 
mind decided that I would choose. 

I also wanted very much to have a piece 

[180] 




FATHER JOAQUIN IN PULPIT AT SAN GABRIEL 
MISSION, WEARING VESTMENTS OF FATHER 
JUNIPERO SERRA 




c 
p 

X 

< 
x 

M 
W 

E 

x 

< 

X 



* THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA *, 

of one of the old olive trees if I could have 
found one that had blown down a straight 
section of the trunk sawed across, about six 
inches thick, to make a round block, polished 
to set my stone bowl on. The driver promised 
to take two of the old palm leaves to you to 
keep. I thought you would like one; the wind 
had strewed the ground with them. But I 
think it rained so hard the days he went back 
he did not stop to look for palm leaves. 

When I come again with the artist we will 
go to San Fernandb. It is one of the places I 
desire to see twice. 

I send you also by to-day's mail a copy 
of my little volume of poems. I thought that 
you would like that volume better than any 
other I have written. In a little more than 
four months I hope to see you again. 

Truly yours, and with many thanks for all 
your kindness, 

Helen Jackson. 

San Francisco, 1600 Taylor St., 

June 27, 1885. 
My Dear Friends: 

I am glad to see the accounts in the papers 
you have sent me of some farther movements 
in relation to the Mission Indians, and I have 

[181] 



t THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

been much cheered by an interview with Prof. 
Painter. 

If he really undertakes to get something 
done for those Indians, he will be worth more 
than all the Senators and Congressmen put to- 
gether. 

I hope he will return to Southern California 
and visit the rest of the villages. He is think- 
ing of it. 

Have you yet been up the Verdugo canon 
to get those two baskets I ordered from the 
old Indian woman there? I fear she will think 
me a " lying white," if she does not get the 
money before long. 

I am sorry to tell you I am still in bed: the 
malarial symptoms seem to be over, but it 
has left me in a state of nervous prostration 
which nothing touches. I can eat literally noth- 
ing, and of course am very weak; it has been a 
trying experience and I fear I have months 
more of it yet to come. 

It is a year to-morrow since I broke my leg! 
My unlucky year. 

I have been asked by one of the eastern 
magazines (a children's magazine) to write 
a poem, narrating some incident or legend in 
California life if possible something to do with 
the Indians. I do not know anything which 



* THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

seems to me to be adapted to tell in a ballad; 
and I have wondered if in Mr. Coronel's store- 
house of memories he could not think of some 
old stories which would be suitable for the 
purpose. If he can and you would write them 
down for me I would be greatly obliged to 
you. I hope you are all well. 

Always faithfully your friend, 

Helen Jackson. 

P. S. When you get those baskets I would 
like to have them sent by express. There is 
no doubt that I shall have to lie here for many 
weeks yet, and I shall enjoy having them. 
Send with them, also, the flat one I gave to you 
to keep. I'd like that to keep work in on my 
bed. 

The following is the last letter written by 
Mrs. Jackson to the Coronels, and preceded her 
death just six days: 

San Francisco, Calif. 

1600 Taylor St., 

Aug. 6, 1885. 
Dear Mr. Coronel: 

When the baskets are done send them by 
express to this address: Mrs. Merritt Trimble, 
59 E. 25th St., New York. 

[183] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA t 

Send all the baskets you have. 

I am failing now fast. I think I cannot live 
a great while. 

In your letter to Mrs. Trimble tell her about 
the stone bowls and pestles, and ask her if she 
wants those too. She will write and tell you. 

Goodby. With very much love to your wife 
and you always, 

Helen Jackson. 



[184] 



CHAPTER XV 

CONTRIBUTED BY DORA MARIANA DE CORONEL 
HER ASSOCIATION WITH MRS. JACKSON 

"^ T*OU are going to get well, Mariana. 

y You will survive me. I feel that you 

will live to complete my work." Thus 

said Mrs. Jackson to me but a few short weeks 

before her death. Often she had talked in that 

vein. She seemed ever to have a presentiment 

that I would survive her. 

One of her most coveted projects, after her 
visit to the Indian settlements and her report 
to the Government, was the institution at some 
available place of a school for Indian women 
and girls, where instruction could be given in 
all of the useful arts, to the end that they 
might in time become self-sustaining. Regard- 
ing the details of this enterprise Mrs. Jackson 
talked frequently with my husband, Don An- 
tonio, and myself. 

"I shall endeavor to secure an appropria- 
tion from Congress for the necessary grounds, 
and these shall be deeded directly to the In- 
dians," said Mrs. Jackson. " For the buildings 

[185] 



^ STORY OF RAMONA * 

I shall appeal to the people of the East for 
donations, and I shall endeavor to have the 
institution abundantly endowed. But you and 
Don Antonio must, at whatever sacrifice, take 
charge of the institution and make a success of 
it. Congress has passed the act that you and 
the Don and I have drafted, providing for the 
granting of lands to the Indians in severalty; 
but little good will come of it unless these poor 
people are taught how to make a living for 
themselves aside from the weaving of baskets. 
Nobody but you and dear Don Antonio can 
successfully carry out my ideas. I am count- 
ing upon meeting with numerous obstacles in 
getting the Indians to give up their tribal rela- 
tions. To them it will be an immense prob- 
lem, a complete change in their mode of life, 
and we may not expect that all will adopt it 
cheerfully. I am counting upon the influence 
that you and Don Antonio can exert to recon- 
cile them to the transformation. Indeed I 
should entertain all sorts of fear and appre- 
hension and doubt regarding the outcome, but 
for the compelling influence which you and 
your husband can exert. No one else I 
have in mind can be intrusted with the 
work." 

Mrs. Jackson gave much thought to the work- 

[186] 



^ THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA ^ 

ing out of the details at the California end of 
the line. She counted largely upon the sup- 
port, financial and otherwise, that Hon. Henry 
M. Teller, then Secretary of the Interior, would 
give to her noble and highly practical enter- 
prise. Don Antonio and I sympathized thor- 
oughly with her, and stood ready to lend hearty 
assistance when required. But Mrs. Jackson's 
early death forever sealed the fate of the edu- 
cational undertaking. 

Nearly thirty years have passed since Helen 
Hunt Jackson put her arm lovingly about me 
and declared her belief that I would survive 
her, and that the completion of her life's work 
would devolve upon me. To some persons 
"Time's unpitying fingers" may begin "to 
smooth out and obliterate the lines, once so 
sharp and distinct, with which she engraved 
herself on the consciousness of her contempo- 
raries." To some persons even her memory 
may have grown dim, as the impression of a 
face long unseen fades, until no longer can be 
recalled the exact look and smile. This is re- 
garded as the inevitable law, each day bringing 
its " little dust our soon choked hearts to fill." 
But it has never been so with me. Never a day 
or night but I feel her presence. Once, I well 
remember, she said: " Mariana, if it be possible 

[187] 



>. STORY OF RAMONA * 

in the next world to come to you in trouble or 
grief or distress, you may count upon me doing 
so." The promise has never been forgotten. 
The suggestion has never once passed from 
my memory. 

Eight months ago, at the beginning of the 
terrible fratricidal strife that has brought so 
much misery to my country and its people, I 
thought it best I should return to the United 
States before it should become too hazardous 
to undertake the journey. It involved a mule- 
back trip of one hundred and fifty miles over 
the mountains to the nearest railway station; 
not a cheerful prospect for a woman of my 
years to undertake. But I entered upon it 
with the utmost confidence that Helen Hunt 
Jackson would be with me every foot of the 
way, protecting me from every possible danger. 
As though in life, she seemed to place her hand 
upon my shoulder and assure me that all would 
be well. 

I have never thought much about spiritual- 
ism. I am not a spiritualist. And yet, oh, 
so many times since, when trouble and grief 
have been my lot, when clouds encircled my 
pathway, when gloom surrounded and threat- 
ened to engulf me, I have suddenly been 
brought to a realization that Mrs. Jackson's 

[188] 




MARIANA DE CORONEL, LOS ANGELES 

Intimate friend of Helen Hunt Jackson, photographed in 1913 
especially for this volume. Senora de Coronel and her husband, 
Don Antonio, really inspired " Ramona " and gave to its author 
the principal facts of the story. She is holding the copy of 
"Ramona given her by Mrs. Jackson. 



r 




FIRST COPY OF "RAMONA" TRANSLATED INTO 

SPANISH, 
Presented by the translator to Sefiora de Coroncl. 



* THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA ^ 

spirit was near, that she was shielding me, 
that in her presence no harm could come. 

My acquaintance and association with her 
has constituted one of the fondest and sweet- 
est recollections of my whole life. Our meet- 
ing was singular. Had she come in any other 
way than she did, her first visit, it is likely, 
would have been her last. I had never heard 
of her or her books. Like most Spanish people, 
I shrank from publicity. Had she simply in- 
troduced herself as a correspondent of the 
" Century Magazine," it is likely I should have 
taken little interest in what she had to say. 
But she brought a letter from Bishop Mora to 
Don Antonio and myself. In it the Bishop 
asked us to give her all the information we 
could regarding the Mission Indians. This we 
proceeded to do, her interest in our relation of 
the story of their treatment, so far as had 
come within our observation and experience, 
being singularly intense. 

She made an engagement to come again the 
following week, and it happened to be Christ- 
mas day, 1 88 1. While she and Don Antonio 
and myself were seated on the veranda, at the 
old hacienda in the orange grove, Los Angeles, 
five or six Indian chiefs rode into the court, in 

[189] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

a high state of excitement. Don Antonio ex- 
cused himself from the circle and stepped out 
to converse with the chiefs. They were talk- 
ing with great animation, and to my amazement 
I observed that Mrs. Jackson was following 
the conversation with the closest attention, al- 
though she could understand not a word of 
what was being said. I noticed her lips mov- 
ing in unison with the voices of the chiefs, 
although she made no audible sound. She 
seemed to be repeating what they said, or 
endeavoring to comprehend its meaning. It 
was perfectly obvious that they were deeply in 
earnest, and finally, as if she could stand it 
no longer, Mrs. Jackson addressed Don An- 
tonio and asked if she might not talk with the 
Indians. The request was of course promptly 
granted. I acted as interpreter, and soon Mrs. 
Jackson was in full possession of the reason for 
their visit. 

White men had secured possession of the 
water rights to their land, and it was to them 
no better than a desert. Mrs. Jackson compre- 
hended the whole story, and secured the 
consent of the Indians to visit their settle- 
ments, Don Antonio assuring them that she 
was their friend and would work in their 
interest. 

[190] 



* THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

She had secured the services of Mr. Abbot 
Kinney, and obtained his appointment as a 
co-commissioner soon after, and the details 
of the now celebrated official journey through 
the country of the Southern California Mission 
Indians were arranged at our home. 

The party consisted of Mrs. Jackson, Mr. 
Abbot Kinney, the late Mr. Henry Sandham, 
the " Century's " artist, and Mr. N. H. Mitchell, 
the proprietor of a livery stable and hotel at 
Anaheim, whose two-seated carriage was used 
for a part of the journey, he acting as driver. 
This carriage was soon abandoned, however, 
not being suited to all purposes of the trip, and 
most of it was made on horseback, or rather 
mule-back, as the sure-footed little burros of 
the Indians were more suited to the condition 
of the trails over the mountains. Indeed, I 
later was advised that the party visited some 
places high up on the mountain sides, or on the 
borders of the desert, where it was possible 
only to go afoot. On one occasion, contem- 
plating a hazardous journey into the mountains, 
I remonstrated with Mrs. Jackson and at- 
tempted to dissuade her from the trip. Her 
answer was, "I must see those poor Indians, 
and I'll go if I die." 

At this time, before the journey was under- 

[191] 



Jt THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

taken, Mrs. Jackson was a guest at Mrs. Kim- 
ball's boarding house on New High Street, 
then about the best place of entertainment in 
Los Angeles. Mr. Kinney and Mr. Sandham, 
pending completion of the arrangements, were 
guests at our home. 

Don Antonio was a veritable encyclopedia, 
and was able to recall, with the slightest effort, 
every important event since his boyhood. His 
knowledge covered the whole period of Spanish, 
Mexican and American rule, from the time of 
his arrival in California until his death. His 
information regarding the Indians was particu- 
larly full and accurate; hence he was of invalu- 
able assistance to Mrs. Jackson in all her work. 
But his knowledge of the English language 
was limited, and the work of interpreting fell 
largely upon me. 

Mrs. Jackson made many notes regarding the 
story of " Ramona " at our home. She dis- 
cussed the intended book with us on many 
occasions, and told us she would name it " Ra- 
mona." She would gladly have located the 
scene of " Ramona " at our hacienda, and 
doubtless would have done so but for the sug- 
gestion made by Don Antonio himself, and 
insisted upon by him, that Camulos was the 

more fitting place. We both assured her that 

[192] 



* THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

the Camulos Rancho was one of the few re- 
maining of the old Spanish homesteads where 
the original life of a California hacienda still 
existed. It was about the only place yet ex- 
isting where the original California hacienda 
could still be studied in all its poetry and 
importance. We told her of the patrician char- 
acter of Camulos. Here, we told her, might 
still be studied the pressing of the Mission 
olive in the old morteros, the gathering of the 
vintage in Hispano-Indian fashion, the making 
of Spanish wine, the Spanish sheep-shearing, 
under an Indian capitan\ here were still the 
picturesque retainers; here were distinguished 
family traditions all the elements, in fact, 
upon which the book might grow with historic 
fidelity. 

Notwithstanding all these facts, the author 
might easily and with perfect fidelity to truth 
and tradition, have located the scenes at the 
Coronel hacienda. But there was another fact, 
another barrier, and a well-nigh insurmountable 
one: the excessive modesty of Don Antonio 
himself. So marked a characteristic of him 
was this that, notwithstanding all he had done 
for Los Angeles, notwithstanding the fact that 
he had labored for thirty years to clear the 
title to Elysian Park, that it might become the 

[193] 



> STORY OF RAMONA >. 

property of the city in fee simple, without a 
shade or shadow, he steadily declined even the 
small honor, so often sought to be conferred 
upon him, of having a street named for him. 

But it is true, it is history and it would 
not be history if it were not true that the 
inspiration of " Ramona " was Don Franco An- 
tonio de Coronel, my husband, under whose 
expansive roof it sprouted and grew, and there 
it was christened with the name by which it 
soon came to be known and ever will be known, 
" Ramona." 

After Mrs. Jackson's return to California in 
1884, the story of " Ramona " having been pub- 
lished, she did much writing at our home. 
She had broken her leg before leaving Colorado 
Springs by falling down the stairway in her 
home, and she had to write in a reclining posi- 
tion. Don Antonio, my husband, had a little 
table made especially for her use, Mrs. Jack- 
son specifying its height, and requesting the 
placing of two shelves in it upon which she 
could lay her finished sheets or notes. Much 
of her writing during her stay in Los Angeles 
in 1884-85, was done on this table, which is 
now a part of the Coronel Collection in the 
Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce. 

Mrs. Jackson selected the Camulos Rancho 

[194] 




2.2 




*t THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

as the home of Ramona. This I know, not 
only because of general conversations with her, 
but she positively declared to me that it was 
Camulos Rancho which she sought to describe 
in the story of " Ramona," and that that rancho 
was the home of Ramona. 

In the latter part of 1884 Mrs. Jackson 
returned to Los Angeles. " Ramona " had not 
been issued from the press at the time of her 
departure from the East. I went with her to 
the postoffice one day, when a package was 
delivered to her there. She opened it, and 
there was a copy of " Ramona," the first she 
had seen. She at once said to me: " Mariana, 
here is the first copy of my book, and I give it 
to you." Taking a pencil she wrote on the fly- 
leaf, "With compliments of the author," and 
then handed it to me. I have the same book 
now. 

I have also the first copy of the book con- 
taining the Spanish translation of " Ramona," 
which was sent me by the translator. 

Naturally I am proud of the fact that Mrs. 
Jackson wished to make our home the home of 
Ramona; but greater honor have I always had, 
and greater comfort will I ever enjoy, in the 
fact that the gifted author, beloved of two 
continents, enshrined in the hearts of the peo- 

[i95l 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA *. 

pic of the whole world, regarded me as her 
best friend. 

Her name and her work are immortalized. 
Nothing I can say will add to her fame. 



^ 
Los Angeles, July, 1913- 



[196] 



CHAPTER XVI 
THE HOME OF RAMONA 

WILLIAM A. ALDERSON 

IT was Camulos ranch to which Helen Hunt 
Jackson was directed by Don Antonio de 
Coronel and his cultured wife. 

To this ranch Mrs. Jackson journeyed. It 
was the estate of Don Ygnacio del Valle, and 
his widow, Dona Ysabel del Valle, was its 
owner and mistress. 

Sefiora del Valle gave much of her life 
to humanitarian work, and being absent upon 
an errand of mercy upon the occasion of Mrs. 
Jackson's visit, did not see her; but her re- 
ligious ardor and fidelity, so correctly portrayed 
in the character of Sefiora Moreno, was sub- 
sequently related to the author of " Ramona " 
by the Coronels. 

That Camulos ranch was selected and in- 
tended as the home of Ramona is not to be 
questioned. Mrs. Jackson herself so declared, 
especially to the Coronels and to one of the 
authors of this volume, and the description in 
the story of the ranch and its appurtenances 
and surroundings positively identify it. 

[197] 



* STORY OF RAMONA ^ 

Mrs. Jackson was not disappointed. Chapter 
II of " Ramona " opens with this general state- 
ment of the ranch: "The Seftora Moreno's 
house was one of the best specimens to be 
found in California of the representative house 
of the half-barbaric, half-elegant, wholly-gen- 
erous and free-handed life led there by Mexican 
men and women of degree in the early part 
of this century, under the rule of the Spanish 
and Mexican viceroys. ... It was a pic- 
turesque life, with more of sentiment and 
gaiety in it; more also that was truly dra- 
matic; more romance than will ever be seen 
again on those sunny shores. The aroma of it 
all lingers there still; industries and inventions 
have not yet slain it; it will last out its cen- 
tury." 

A visit to Camulos ranch on July 2, 1913, 
enables me to revoke the declaration that " the 
aroma of it all lingers there still." "The 
Senora Moreno's house " is there just as Mrs. 
Jackson saw and described it. There are the 
same white walls, the wide court verandas, 
" and a still broader one across the entire front, 
which looked to the south." There is the 
dining-room, " on the opposite side of the court- 
yard from the kitchen," and the same stairs 
leading from a higher to a lower part of the 

[198] 




THE WILLOWS AND SOUTH VERANDA, CAMULOS 

(i) Under these trees were the washing stones where Ales- 
sandrp first saw Ramona. (2) South veranda of Camulos 
dwelling, as it appeared in 1913. 




(I) THE CROSS ON THE NORTH HILL, CAMULOS, 
OVERLOOKING THE RANCH 

" She caused to be set up upon every one of the soft rounded 
hills * * * a large wooden cross, * * * that the heretics may 
know, when they go by, that they are on the estate of a good 
Catholic." " Ramona. (2) To the left the plank fence on 
which Margarita hung the altar cloth, and from which it was 
blown and then torn; the bells, cross and famous little chapel, 
Camulos, as they appeared 1913. 



^ THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA ^ 

south veranda, where Alessandro sat and played 
his violin to the stricken Felipe. Father Sal- 
vierderra's room, at the southeast corner of 
the house, and the barred window through 
which Ramona " saw Alessandro pacing up and 
down the walk " in the moonlight and by which 
she sat, peering sadly and wistfully into the 
night, made a prisoner by the angered Seriora 
Moreno when discovered by her in the arms 
of Alessandro in the willows these are there, 
just as Mrs. Jackson saw and described them. 

On the hills to the north and south are the 
identical crosses described in the story of " Ra- 
mona," erected by Senora Moreno "that the 
heretics may know, when they go by, that they 
are on the estate of a good Catholic, and that 
the faithful may be reminded to pray." There 
they still stand, " summer and winter, rain and 
shine, the silent, solemn, outstretched arms" 
the Blessed Cross, the sudden sight of which 
has wrought miracles of conversion on the most 
hardened. " Certain it is that many a good 
Catholic halted and crossed himself when he 
first beheld them in the lonely places, stand- 
ing out in sudden relief against the blue sky." 

The identical little chapel, "dearer to the 
Senora than her house," with its white sides, 
in a setting of orange trees, is still there. Its. 

[199] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

altar is yet " surrounded by a really imposing 
row of holy and apostolic figures/' Its chests 
yet contain the most costly and elaborate vest- 
ments, some so heavily braided with gold as 
almost to be able to stand alone. 

This chapel is a part of the history of the 
Catholic Church in California. Services are 
held within its historic and sacred portals as 
of old. Priests, many of them high dignitaries 
of the Church, visit it, that they may be able 
to say they officiated at its altar. Some bring 
their own vestments, not knowing what the 
chests of the chapel contain, and are astonished 
when shown the beautiful, gold-braided robes 
long kept and used in this miniature house of 
worship. Certain religious privileges have been 
granted to this little chapel which give to it a 
special character. 

The chapel is only a frail frame building, the 
interior being twenty feet long and fourteen 
feet wide. Connected with the front is a roofed 
arcade, sides open and floored, thirty feet long 
and fourteen feet wide. In this arched addition 
are long benches running along the sides, for 
those who cannot find room within. 

The torn altar cloth is still in existence and 
use, though not the only one that adorns the 
altar from time to time. This particular piece 

[aoo] 



* STORY OF RAMONA & 

was made from Senora del Valle's wedding 
gown. It is the subject of one of the most 
interesting and eventful climaxes of the story. 
The fence on which Margarita hung this altar 
adornment to dry after washing it, preparatory 
to the coming of Father Salvierderra, is still 
intact. It divides the yard from the artichoke 
patch, into which the cloth was blown and 
then dragged and torn by Capitan, Juan Canito's 
favorite collie. 

There is the same wide, straight walk, shaded 
by a trellis, that leads down to the brook and 
the willow trees, where were " the broad flat 
stone washboards, on which was done all the 
family washing." But the brook is now to the 
north, nearer the house. The trellis is not now 
" so knotted and twisted with grapevines that 
little " of the woodwork is to be seen, but 
grapevines are vigorously climbing over it. 

The big gnarled willow tree, under which 
were the flat stone washboards, and in the even- 
ing shadows of which Alessandro first beheld 
Ramona, is still at the foot of the arbor. The 
pomegranate trees yet mark the border of the 
orange grove in front of the house. 

" The little graveyard on the hillside," where 
the Senora Moreno was "laid by the side of 
her husband and her children," with its picket 



> STORY OF RAMONA * 

fence and wooden crosses, still bears its awful 
silence in the shadow of a single pepper tree. 

The gray stone bowls, " hollowed and pol- 
ished, shining inside and out," "made by the 
Indians, nobody knew how many ages ago, 
. . . with only stones for tools," which were 
used as flower pots, now adorn the rim of the 
cement fountain which is in the orange trees 
near the chapel. 

Four shepherd dogs, the common ranch 
breed, answered the call for dinner, and sug- 
gested their illustrious forefather Capitan, 
Juan Canito's favorite collie, which went away 
in the stillness of that tragic night with Ra- 
mona and Alessandro, when they eloped from 
Camulos ranch and fled to Temecula. " The 
dogs, the poultry, all loved the sight of Ra- 
mona." 

And there is yet to be seen the same public 
road which the commissioners located in the 
rear of the house, concerning which Seriora 
Moreno exclaimed: "It is well. Let their 
travel be where it belongs, behind our kitchen, 
and no one have sight of the front doors of 
our houses, except friends who have come to 
visit us. ... Whenever she saw passing the 
place wagons or carriages belonging to the 
hated Americans, it gave her a distinct thrill 

[202] 




GRAPE ARBOR AND OLIVE MILL 

(i) The grape arbor, Camulos, leading to the washing stones, 
as it appeared 1913. (2) The olive mill and tank, Camulos, 1913. 




INNER COURT AND OLD WINERY, CAMULOS 

(i) Inner court, Camulos, as it appeared 1913. (2) The old 
winery. Camulos, as it appeared 1913. " Every hand on the 
place was hard at work, picking the grapes, treading them out 
in tubs, and emptying the juice into stretched rawhides swung 
from crossbeams." " Ramona" 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA ^ 

of pleasure to think that the house turned 
its back on them." This road is now the 
main county thoroughfare through the Santa 
Clara Valley, in which is located Camulos 
ranch. 

The winery, where the finest of vintages were 
pressed and the juice aged to a perfect nectar, 
still stands, though now but a storehouse for 
abandoned casks and ranch implements. And 
there, under a cottonwood tree, is the same 
mortero used in making olive oil in the days 
long gone by. 

Less than a hundred feet from the chapel, 
and in line with the picket fence in its rear, is 
an oak frame from which, at the time of Mrs. 
Jackson's visit, hung three Mission bells. They 
were brought from Spain, and had done long 
service in one of the old Franciscan Missions 
in California. These bells were swung in the 
shape of a triangle. The top one was used to 
call to meals, the largest to summon those on 
the ranch to chapel, and the third to call the 
children to school. The belfry frame, with two 
of the bells, remains undisturbed, evidencing 
the old days on this splendid hacienda. The 
missing bell was taken away some time ago by 
one of the daughters of Senora del Valle, Mrs. 

Josefa Forster, and placed in the chapel erected 

[203] 



> STORY OF RAMONA & 

at her residence in Los Angeles, where it does 
appropriate service to this day. 

There is also still standing the large white 
cross just within the picket fence near the 
chapel. 

Although not of sufficient size at the time 
of Mrs. Jackson's visit to attract attention, there 
is now, to the west of the house about one 
hundred feet, the largest English walnut tree 
known. Its trunk measures six feet in di- 
ameter, and its branches extend fifty-two feet 
from the body of the tree in every direction. 
Beneath its ample shade are a number of chairs 
cut from the trunks of big orange trees, in 
which one may comfortably recline on the 
hottest day. 

Only a few minor changes have taken place 
since Mrs. Jackson's visit. The chief industry 
is no longer the rearing of sheep. The sweep- 
ing acres are in a high state of cultivation. 
Fruit-pickers have superseded sheep-shearers. 
Semi-tropical fruits and grain constitute the 
principal crops. 

The almond orchard has given way to 
oranges. The sheep-shearing sheds and cor- 
rals are no more. Large barns, stables and 
pens have supplanted the old corrals and tule- 
covered sheds. 

[3041 



Jt THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA y, 

"The second willow copse, which lay per- 
haps a quarter of a mile west of the first/' 
where Ramona met Alessandro on his return 
from Temecula the night they stole away from 
the Sefipra Moreno's, is gone, washed away 
by a flood in the Santa Clara River; and the 
garden of flowers in front of the house is now 
a part of the orange grove " between the ve- 
randa and the river meadows." 

Camulos ranch is still owned by the del 
Valle family. On the day of my visit there, 
July 2, 1913, I was cordially received by Don 
Ulpiano del Valle, one of the sons, who is in 
active charge of the ranch and resides there. 
Mr. Charles H. Cram and his wife, who was 
Miss Ysabel del Valle, a daughter of Dona 
Ysabel del Valle, were visiting the ranch on 
that day. 

Though I have many times passed through 
Camulos on the train, I had never before 
stopped there. Mr. Cram spent the day with 
me, and was especially courteous and obviously 
pleased in pointing out many features described 
or named in " Ramona," explaining in detail 
the changes wrought. 

Upon the occasion of his first visit to Camu- 
los, Christmas time, twenty-five years previ- 
ous, Mr. Cram said there were seventy-two 

[205] 



& THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA *t 

guests present. Of the hospitality of the ranch 
Mrs. Jackson wrote: " Nobody ever knew ex- 
actly how many women were in the kitchen, 
or how many men in the fields. There were 
always women cousins, or brothers' wives or 
widows or daughters, who had come to stay, 
or men cousins, or sisters' husbands or sons, 
who were stopping on their way up or down 
the valley. When it came to the pay-roll, 
Sefior Felipe knew to whom he paid wages ; but 
who were fed and lodged under his roof, that 
was quite another thing. It could not enter 
into the head of a Mexican gentleman to make 
either count or account of that. It would be 
a disgraceful, niggardly thought. ... In the 
General's day it had been a free-handed boast 
of his that never less than fifty persons, men, 
women and children, were fed within his gates 
each day; how many more, he did not care nor 
know. . . . Hardly a day passed that the 
Sefiora had not visitors. She was still a per- 
son of note; her house the natural resting 
place for all who journeyed through the valley." 
I sat on the court veranda during the prepa- 
ration of the noon meal, to which I was invited 
with cultured and gracious insistence. The 
feelings which obsessed me were indescribably 
intense. I knew the name and life of every 

[206] 



Jt THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA >. 

character mentioned in the " Ramona " story, 
and they lived again in the dreamy fancy that 
possessed me. There were little ones, some 
the grandchildren of Sefiora del Valle, playing 
about the kitchen, replica of the scene witnessed 
by Mrs. Jackson and which inspired the sen- 
tence : " The troop of youngsters which still 
swarmed around the kitchen quarters of Sefiora 
Moreno's house, almost as numerous and inex- 
plicable as in the grand old days of the Gen- 
eral's time." I saw the servants carrying from 
the kitchen to the dining-room, " on the opposite 
side of the court-yard," dishes of steaming food; 
and on entering the dining-room the generous 
table recalled Mrs. Jackson's description of a 
meal at Camulos ranch: " A great dish of spiced 
beef and cabbage in the center of the table; a 
tureen of thick soup, with forcemeat balls and 
red peppers in it; two red earthen platters 
heaped, one with boiled rice and onions, the 
other with the delicious frijoles (beans) so 
dear to all Mexican hearts; cut-glass dishes 
filled with hot stewed pears, or preserved 
quinces, or grape jelly." 

I stood on every spot of Camulos ranch men- 
tioned in " Ramona." I climbed the hill to the 
north and reverently bowed before one of the 
Senora's crosses, and, though a " heretic," real- 

[207] 



Jt STORY OF RAMQNA y, 

izcd that I "was on the estate of a good 
Catholic." In fancy I saw Juan Canito, the 
head shepherd, again in life, on " the sunny 
veranda of the south side of the kitchen wing 
of the house," sitting " on the low bench, his 
head leaning back against the whitewashed 
wall, his long legs stretched out nearly across 
the whole width of the veranda, his pipe firmly 
wedged in the extreme left corner of his mouth, 
his hands in his pockets the picture of placid 
content." Again there were the Indian sheep- 
shearers, " forms, dusky black against the fiery 
western sky, coming down the valley." Under 
the identical willow tree described in the story 
I could see Ramona, " her hair in disorder, her 
sleeves pinned loosely on her shoulders, her 
whole face aglow with the earnestness of her 
task," bending "low over the stones, rinsing 
the altar cloth up and down in the water, 
anxiously scanning it, then plunging it in 
again." 

And how thrilling it was to complete the 
picture! "It was the band of Indian sheep- 
shearers. They turned to the left, and went 
toward the sheep sheds and booths. But there 
was one of them that Ramona did not see. He 
had been standing for some minutes concealed 

behind a large willow tree a few rods from the 

[*<*] 



V 

tl 

U> 3 






3 W 

c >d 
o* > 





NORTH SIDE OF KITCHEN AND PUBLIC ROAD 

(i) North side of kitchen and shepherd dogs. Camulos, 1913. 
44 The dogs, the poultry, all loved the sight of Ramona." " Ra- 
mona." (2) The public road behind Camulos dwelling, as it 
appeared 1913. "Whenever she saw passing the place wagons 
or carriages belonging to the hated Americans, it gave her a 
distinct thrill of pleasure to think that the house turned its back 
on them." " Ramona." 



* STORY OF RAMONA & 

place where Ramona was kneeling. It was 
Alessandro, son of Pablo Assis, captain of the 
sheep-shearing band. Walking slowly along in 
advance of his men, he had felt a light, as from 
a mirror held in the sun, smite his eyes. It 
was the red sunbeam on the glittering water 
where Ramona knelt. In the same second he 
saw Ramona. He halted, as wild creatures of 
the forest halt at a sound, gazed, walked 
abruptly away from his men, who kept on, not 
noticing his disappearance. Cautiously he 
moved a few steps nearer, into the shelter of 
the gnarled old willow, from behind which he 
could gaze unperceived on the beautiful vision 
for so it seemed to him." 

I could see Alessandro and Ramona in the 
darkness of the night in which they went out 
into a homeless world, with love as their only 
hope and courage, " under the willows the 
same copse where he first halted at his first 
sight of Ramona"; could hear his soft Indian 
voice telling her he thought of her as " Majel," 
and saying to her, " it is the name of the bird 
you are like the wood-dove in the Luiseno 
tongue. . . . It is by that name I have often 
thought of you since the night I watched all 
night for you, after you kissed me, and two 
wood-doves were calling and answering each 

[209] 



Jft STORY OF RAMONA & 

other in the dark; . . . and the wood-dove is 
true to its mate always." 

There was Marda, the old cook, again offi- 
ciating in the kitchen ; Margarita, " the young- 
est and prettiest of the housemaids," agitated 
and sobbing because, through her negligence, 
the altar cloth had blown into the artichoke 
patch and been torn by Capitan, the shepherd 
dog; Juanita, the eldest of the house serv- 
ants, silly, " good for nothing except to shell 
beans." 

And there again was the Senora Moreno, 
" so quiet, so reserved, so gentle an exterior 
never was known to veil such an imperious and 
passionate nature, brimful of storm, always 
passing through stress; never thwarted, except 
at peril of those who did it; adored and hated 
by turn, and each at the hottest. A tremendous 
force wherever she appeared." 

It was not difficult to picture the Senora 
bending over Felipe as he lay ill with fever in 
the raw-hide bed made by Alessandro, on the 
raised part of the south veranda, from which 
stairs lead to the lower portion. I sat on these 
steps, and fancied I could see Alessandro as 
he played his violin to soothe the suffering 
Felipe, his music at all times sad and plaintive 
because of his love for Ramona. 

[210] 



* THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

In the valley in which Camulos ranch is lo- 
cated I have seen the wild mustard growing 
just as described in " Ramona " " in the 
branches of which the birds of the air may 
rest. . . . With a clear blue sky behind it 
... it looks like a golden snow storm." It 
is a beautiful picture drawn by Mrs. Jackson 
of the meeting of Father Salvierderra and 
Ramona in the mustard. 

Father Salvierderra! His is the strong, 
towering, grand character of "Ramona"! I 
stood in the room in the southeast corner of 
the ranch dwelling always reserved for this 
saintly man. I felt I was on a hallowed spot. 
" It had a window to the south and one to the 
east. When the first glow of dawn came in 
the sky, this eastern window was lit up as by 
a fire. The Father was always on watch for 
it, having usually been at prayer for hours. As 
the first ray reached the window he would 
throw the casement wide open, and standing 
there with bared head, strike up the melody of 
the sunrise hymn sung in all devout Mexican 
families." 

From this room I went to the little chapel, 
with its white walls, set in the orange grove. 
The night of the angered scene between Senora 
Moreno and Ramona, when the Senora discov- 

[aix] 



> STORY OF RAMONA > 

ercd Ramona in Alessandro's arms at the wil- 
lows which shade the washing stones at the 
brook, Alessandro " hid behind the geranium 
clump at the chapel door . . . watching Ra- 
mona's window, . . . racked by his emotions; 
. . . Ramona loved him; she had told him so." 

Passing through the arched approach, the 
door of the chapel was opened. Silently I 
entered. A taper was burning. There was the 
altar, still " surrounded by a really imposing 
row of holy and apostolic figures." There was 
the same torn altar cloth, so deftly repaired 
by Ramona that the rent in it might 
not be noticed; but it did not escape the 
keen and observing eyes of Helen Hunt 
Jackson. 

What thoughts seized me! How vividly real 
seemed all that is in the " Ramona " story con- 
cerning this sacred place! I could see "the 
chapel full of kneeling men and women; those 
who could not find room inside kneeling on 
the garden walks; Father Salvierderra, in gor- 
geous vestments, coming, at close of the serv- 
ices, slowly down the aisle, the close-packed 
rows of worshipers parting to right and left to 
let him through, all looking up eagerly for his 
blessing, women giving him offerings of fruit 

[313] 



II 



n 

w > 

a I 

15 

i. w 

ig 



*< 

3 





VERANDA OF INNER COURT AND WALNUT TREE 

(i) Part of the veranda on inner court, Camulos, 1913. (2) 
Under the largest English walnut tree known, Camulos, 1913. 



y, STORY OF RAMONA & 

or flowers, and holding up their babies, that he 
might lay his hands on their heads." 

Father Salvierderra ! Consecrated to the 
tenets and purposes of the Catholic Church; 
trudging over mountain and through valley 
from his home, the Santa Barbara Mission, to 
cheer and bless the humble and the high alike. 
" To wear a shoe in place of a sandal, to take 
money in a purse for a journey, above all to lay 
aside the gray gown and cowl for any sort of 
secular garment, seemed to him wicked. To 
own comfortable clothes while there were others 
suffering for want of them and there were 
always such seemed to him a sin for which 
one might not undeservedly be smitten with 
sudden and terrible punishment. In vain the 
Brothers again and again supplied him with a 
warm cloak; he gave it away to the first beg- 
gar he met." " What can I do to help you? " 
was the ever-ready question that revealed his 
unselfish and sympathetic nature. 

And there in this chapel, a holy spot in the 
wilderness, I stood with bowed head and solemn 
thought, touched by the memory and spirit of 
this grand, this noble Franciscan ; " so revered 
and loved by all who had come under his in- 
fluence, that they would wait long months with- 
out the offices of the church, rather than con- 



> STORY OF RAMONA * 

fcss their sins or confide their perplexities to 
anyone else." I was impelled to cry out, as 
though in his living presence, as did Agrippa to 
Paul, "Almost thou persuadest me to be a 
Christian." 



CHAPTER XVII 

ABBOT KINNEY, CO-COMMISSIONER WITH MRS. 
JACKSON N. H. MITCHELL 

NOW known as " The Doge of Venice," 
his present abode, the beautiful and 
popular seaside resort near Los Angeles 
which he founded, Mr. Abbot Kinney is en- 
joying the fruits of a long and successful life. 

He came to California in 1873, and was a 
guest at the famous old Kimball Mansion on 
New High Street, Los Angeles, when Mrs. 
Jackson stopped there on her first visit to the 
State. 

The vivacity, wit, culture and genius of the 
woman attracted Mr. Kinney. He was a friend 
to the Mission Indians, was in deep sympathy 
with the purpose of Mrs. Jackson's trip to Cali- 
fornia, and soon a close friendship was created 
between them, which resulted in Mr. Kinney 
being selected by Mrs. Jackson as co-commis- 
sioner to aid in her struggling effort to protect 
the various Indian tribes in Southern California. 

Mrs. Jackson's selection of Mr. Kinney to 
accompany and aid her was little less than an 

tad 



> STORY OF RAMONA > 

inspiration. He was familiar with the ground 
to be covered, had some knowledge of the sub- 
ject to be considered, and was not wholly a 
stranger to the Spanish language or the mixed 
dialects of the various tribes of Indians whose 
villages were to be visited. Moreover, he had 
come to share in the earnestness and enthusiasm 
with which the noble woman entered upon her 
mission. He recognized her as the leading 
spirit in the humanitarian movement, and ad- 
dressed her as " General." She, in turn, re- 
garded him as her " Comrade," and so addressed 
him, later, in her correspondence, shortening 
the appellation to " Co." 

In their wanderings over the San Jacinto 
Mountains it became necessary to visit locali- 
ties that could not be reached in any sort of 
vehicle. Mr. Kinney naturally relieved Mrs. 
Jackson in so far as he could from these arduous 
tasks. In doing so he met with some incidents 
not witnessed by his chief. Some of these 
were related by Mr. Kinney to the authors of 
this volume. One instance is of peculiar hu- 
man interest. A man named Fayne had 
wrongfully dispossessed an Indian of his home, 
and was holding possession when Mr. Kinney 
was in the neighborhood. It was a singularly 
aggravating outrage, and Commissioner Kin- 

[216] 




MR. ABBOT KIXXEY, 

Co-commissioner and intimate friend of Helen Hunt Jackson, 
who journeyed with her through Southern California, and aided 
in her work for the Mission Indians. 




ll 



M 

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(/3 

O) _. 



3 *' a 

o gs 

X. 

ill 

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8-s 



P. 

,*J 

<'i< 



*" o 

v. "3 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA ^ 

ney determined to dispossess him while on the 
ground, if possible, and to that extent right the 
wrong. 

As he approached the house on horseback he 
observed a man leaning over the front gate 
with a rifle in his hand and a set look of wicked 
determination in his eyes. Mr. Kinney affected 
not to observe the bellicose attitude of the vil- 
lain, and although the weapon was pointed at 
him, rode directly up to the fence. 

" Well," said Fayne, in a brutal tone of voice, 
" what do you want here? " 

"I am an agent of the Government," an- 
swered Mr. Kinney, "and I've come to in- 
vestigate your title to this property. I've heard 
the Indian's story, and now I've come to hear 
what you have to say." 

" Oh, well, that's different. If you want to 
be decent about the matter and do the right 
thing, I don't mind telling you what my 
claim is." 

With this Fayne lowered his rifle and in- 
vited Mr. Kinney into the house. His story 
was long and rambling, but wholly without 
merit, and Mr. Kinney and Mrs. Jackson, be- 
fore leaving the locality, had the satisfaction of 
restoring the little ranch to its rightful owner, 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

the Indian who had lived on it all his life, as 
had his father before him. 

Upon another occasion it became necessary 
for Mr. Kinney to go on foot to a little ranch 
on the edge of the desert, where he found the 
owner, an aged Indian, in great distress over 
the complete destruction of his crop sole re- 
liance for the sustenance of himself and family 
until another could be grown by a white man 
named Lugo, who had driven a herd of cattle 
and a band of sheep over it, breaking down the 
fences on either side, and leaving not a vestige 
of vegetation upon the place. The act was one 
of pure malevolence, since there was an abun- 
dance of room on either side of the ranch to 
have driven his stock without damage to any- 
one. 

Mr. Kinney burned with indignation when 
he viewed the wreck and heard the pitiful 
story from the lips of the sufferer. Seeking 
out the perpetrator he introduced himself as an 
agent of the Government, told him he had ap- 
praised the damage, and warned him that, un- 
less he should appear at a certain place in San 
Diego within ten days and deposit the sum 
named for the benefit of the outraged Indian, 
he would send an officer after him. There was 
no parleying, nor was there any subsequent 



>. THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

default. Mr. Kinney and Mrs. Jackson were 
able to hand the money over to the grateful 
Indian a few weeks later. 

Particularly interesting was Mr. Kinney's 
relation of the visit of Mrs. Jackson to Temec- 
ula. He was with her on that momentous 
occasion. The scenes of desolation, mute but 
irrefutable evidence of the outrage of the whites 
upon the Indians, seemed to wrack the heart 
and mind of Mrs. Jackson. The interview be- 
tween her and Mrs. Wolfe, Mrs. Hartsel of 
" Ramona," was fervent and dramatic. Mrs. 
Wolfe had witnessed the ejectment of the 
Indians from Temecula. Her sympathies were 
with the maltreated red men, and naturally she 
elicited the confidence and admiration of Mrs. 
Jackson. 

At the Temecula graveyard Mrs. Jackson ob- 
served an Indian woman weeping over the 
grave of her husband. The incident gave birth 
to the character of Carmena in " Ramona." 
"As they entered the enclosure a dark figure 
arose from one of the graves. ... It was 
Carmena. The poor creature, nearly crazed 
with grief, was spending her days by her baby's 
grave in Pachanga, and her nights by her hus- 
band's in Temecula. She dared not come to 

[219] 



> STORY OF RAMONA * 

Tcmccula by day, for the Americans were 
there, and she feared them." 

When in a reminiscent mood Mr. Kinney 
relates many interesting incidents associated 
with the historical journey over the San Jacinto 
Mountains, originally suggested to Mrs. Jack- 
son by the Coronels, and which gave birth to 
the great American romance, " Ramona." He 
asserts that nearly if not quite all of the char- 
acters and incidents in " Ramona " were sug- 
gested by persons seen and episodes encoun- 
tered during the journey and Mrs. Jackson's 
visit to Camulos ranch, and that the author's 
description of places, relation of incidents and 
portrayal of characters are astonishingly cor- 
rect and faithful. 

While Mr. Kinney, with his accustomed 
courtesy, talked willingly and at length with 
the authors concerning Mrs. Jackson and " Ra- 
mona," to the request that he contribute some- 
thing to this volume over his own signature 
he answered : " I could not write anything on 
the subject that would not be either dull or 
colorless, or violate my views on the sacred 
character of the relations of personal friend- 
ship." 

The close and intimate friendship existing 
between Mrs. Jackson and Mr. Kinney is evi- 

[230] 




INTERIOR OF SAN GABRIEL MISSION 



y, STORY OF RAMONA > 

denced by the correspondence between them. 
Portions of some of the letters of the author 
of "Ramona" to Mr. Kinney are here given: 

New York, January 17, 1884. 
Dear Co.: 



When I arrived here on Nov. 20 and found 
that you had left on November 19, " a madder 
man than Mr. Mears you would not wish to 
see." You surely could not have got my note 
saying I would start on the i6th I took cold 
on the journey. . . . 

Feby. 2. Whether from the horrible weather 
or from overwork I don't know, I collapsed 
for a week, and had an ugly sore throat and 
did no work. Now I am all right again and 
back at my table, but shall go slower. I am 
leading a life as quiet as if I were at Mrs. 
Kimball's I go nowhere am never out after 
5 P.M. I am resolved to run no risks what- 
ever till after I get this story done. I hope it 
is good. It is over one-third done. Am pretty 
sure the ist of March will see it done. Then 
I will play. 

The weather has been horrible snow after 
snow; raw and cloudy days, I have sighed 
for Southern California. 

[aax] 



> STORY OF RAMONA * 

But in the house I have been comfortable 
have not once seen the mercury below 60 in 
my rooms. The apartment is sunny and light 
6th floor east windows all my "traps," 
as Mr. Jackson calls them, came in well, and the 
room looks as if I had lived in it all my life. 

Now, for yourself What have you done? 
How are you running your home? Who is at 
the Villa? Is Mrs. Carr well? My regards to 
her. Don't you wish you had carried home a 
wife? I am exceedingly disappointed that you 
didn't. 

Miss Sheriff writes me that a suit is brought 
for the ejectment of the Saboba Indians. Let 
me know if you have heard of it what Brun- 
son & Wells say. I wrote to Wells a long 
time ago asking for information about the suit 
by which the Temecula Indians were ejected 
but he has not replied. 

What do you hear of the new agent? 

I got Miss Sheriff's salary restored to old 
figure. 

I have just sent a list of 200 names to Com. 
Price to mail our report to. Of course you 
had copies. I feel well satisfied with it. Do 
not you? I wish they'd send us again some- 
where. They never will. I've had my last 
trip as a " Junketing Female Commissioner." 



^ STORY OF RAMONA * 

Do write soon; and answer all my ques- 
tions and don't wait for me to reply, but 
write again. I am writing from 1,000 to 2,000 
words a day on the story and letters are im- 
possible, except to Mr. Jackson. Whether I 
write or not you know I am always the same 
affectionate old General. 

Yours ever, 

H. J. 

The " story " to which reference is made was 
" Ramona," which was being written at the 
date of the letter. 

New York, February 2oth, 1884. 
Dear Co.: 

Your first letter made me wretched. If we 
had "been and gone" and got a rascally firm 
set over those Indian matters I thought we 
might better never have been born. 

But your second reassures me. 

I sent you one of the reports. You can get 
all you want, I think, by writing to Commis- 
sioner Price. I sent him a long list of names 
to mail it to. They said I could have all I 
wanted. Of course you can too. There is a 
bill of some sort, prepared and before Congress. 
I have written to Teller asking for it, or sum 
and substance. He does not reply. None of 

[333] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA *t 

them care for anything now, except the elec- 
tion. . . . 

I am working away at the story (Ramona) 
twenty chapters done. I'd like to consult 
you. Do you think it will do any harm to de- 
part from the chronological sequence of events 
in my story? 

For dramatic purposes I have put the Temec- 
ula ejectment before the first troubles in San 
Pasquale. 

Will anybody be idiot enough to make a point 
of that? I am not writing history. I hope the 
story is good. 

I wish you could see my rooms. What with 
Indian baskets, the things from Marsh's, and 
antique rugs, they are really quite charming, 
luckily for me who have been shut up in them 
by the solid week. 

Such weather was never seen. There are 
no words proper ones suitable to describe it. 
I sigh for San Gabriel sunshine. 

I hope you are well and jolly. I'm awfully 
sorry you are not married. Good night. Al- 
ways, Affectionately yours, 

General. 

Regards to Mrs. Crank, Mrs. C , etc. I 

don't wonder the latter does not succeed as 

landlady. I'd as soon board with a cyclone. 

[aa 4 ] 




PAGE OF OLD RECORD AND BELL, SAN GABRIEL 

(i) Fage of old record at San Gabriel Mission, written by 
Father Junipero Serra and containing his signature. (2) One 
of the missing bells from San Gabriel Mission, taken by the 
late E. J. (" Lucky ") Baldwin, as hung on his Santa Anita ranch. 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

The following letter was written after the 
completion of " Ramona," and Mrs. Jackson 
had fallen down the stairs in her home at Colo- 
rado Springs and fractured her leg. 

Colorado Springs, 

September 28th, 1884. 
Dear Co.: 

. ( '! ' 

I am thinking of coming to So. California 
as soon as I can hobble. I must fly from here 
before November, but I do not feel quite up 
to shutting myself in for the winter as I must 
in New York. So I propose to run across to 
your snug seashore for two or three months 
of sunshine and outdoors before going to New 
York. Do you not think that wise? 

I wrote to Mrs. W in San Diego the 

only place I know in all California where there 
was real comfort. Also I like the San Diego 
climate best. But I learned to my great dis- 
appointment that she had gone to Los Angeles. 
The N's urge my coming to a new hotel in 
San Diego but I have a mortal dread of Cali- 
fornia hotels. Do you know anything of it? 
And do you know where Mrs. W's house in 
Los Angeles is? If it is on high ground? . . . 

... I shall bring my Effie with me too 



*. STORY OF RAMONA * 

helpless yet to travel alone. Goodness! What 
martyrdom crutches are! While I was station- 
ary in bed it was fun in comparison with this. 
But I am a sinner to grumble. I shall walk 
with one crutch and one cane, next week, the 
doctor thinks, and that is great luck for such 
a bad compound fracture as mine; and at my 
age. My weight also is a sad hindrance. If 
I weighed only 125 or so they say I could 
walk with a cane now. Ultimately they insist 
my leg will be as good as ever, and no lame- 
ness. I shall believe it when I see it! . . . 

I had a letter from Mrs. C the other day. 

Strange, that disorderly chaotic woman writes 
a precise, methodical hand, clear as type, char- 
acterless in its precision; and I, who am a 
martinet of ardent system, write well as you 
see! What nonsense to say handwriting shows 
character. 

I have ordered a copy of " The Hunter Cats 
of Connorloa" sent to you. You will laugh 
to see yourself saddled with an orphan niece 
and nephew. I hope you won't dislike the 
story. I propose in the next to make you 
travel all through Southern California with 
" Susy and Rea " and tell the Indian story 

over again. I only hope that scalawag C , 

of Los Angeles, will come across the story, 

[226] 



* THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

and see himself set forth in it. He will recog- 
nize the story of Fernando, the old Indian he 
turned out at San Gabriel. 

As you recollect the situation of lands at 
Saboba was there good land enough in that 
neighborhood for those Indians to get homes? 
The Indian appropriation bill passed in July 
has a clause enabling Indians to take land under 
homestead laws, with no fees. 

What are Brunson and Wells doing? Any- 
thing? What is the state of the Saboba mat- 
ter? But I suppose you can think of nothing 
save politics till next Dec. 

Write soon. I want to know about Mrs. 
W's house if it is high, sunny, airy, etc. 

Yours always, 

General. 

Having passed several months in Los An- 
geles, Mrs. Jackson went to San Francisco 
early in 1885, where she died a few months 
later. 

San Francisco, April ist, 1885. 
Dear Co.: 

I don't wonder you thought so. Anybody 
well enough to journey to S. F. wouldn't seem 

to be in such bad case. But it was true I 

[227] 



* STORY OF RAMONA * 

came up here on my last shred of nerve force, 
and collapsed at once. I have had a terrible 
poisoning. It will be seven weeks next Satur- 
day since there has been any proper action 
of either stomach or bowels, simply six weeks 
of starvation, that is all, and the flesh has 
rained off me. I must have lost at least forty 
pounds, and I am wan and yellow in the face. 
Nothing ever before so utterly upset me. 
Everybody cried that bade me good-by, I looked 
so ill. Even Miller, my driver, stood speech- 
less, before me in the cars with his eyes full 
of tears! Dear old Mr. Coronel put his arms 
round me sighing: "Excuse me, I must!" 
Embraced me in Spanish fashion with a half 
sob. I know they none of them expected me 
to live which did not cheer me up much. I 
seemed to be better at first after getting here, 
but had a relapse last week diarrhoea as bad 
as ever and stomach worse. I am in bed 
take only heated milk and gr and sit up long 
enough to have my bed made. It is a bad job, 
old fellow, and I doubt very much if I ever pull 
out of it. It's all right, only if I had been 
asked to choose the one city of all I know in 
which I would have most disliked to be slain, 
it would have been San Francisco. 

Thursday, A.M. Your note is just here. 

[228] 



y, STORY OF RAMONA * 

Sorry you have to change cooks. Changing 
stomachs is worse, however. Don't grumble, 
lest a worse thing befall you. Give as much 
of my love as your wife will accept, to her. 
I liked your calling her the "Young H. H." 
There is no doubt she looks as I did at twenty. 
... I shall never be well again, Co. I know 
it with a certain knowledge. Nobody at my 
age with my organization ever really got over 
a severe blood poisoning. My doctor is a good 
one, a young man Dr. Boericke, 834 Sutter 
St. I like him heartily. He is clever, enthusi- 
astic, European taught. All that homeopathy 
can do for me I shall have, and you know the 
absoluteness of my faith in homeopathy. 
Good-by. I'll let you know how it goes. Don't 
give yourself a moment's worry. 

Yours always, 

General. 

P. S. Can't you do something to get Rust 
appointed Indian agent? I have heard quite 
directly that Lamar is full of warm sympathy 
for the Indians. Do try, Co., and accomplish 
something for them. You might, if you would 
determine to. 

Although approaching the sere and yellow- 
leaf period of his useful sojourn here below, 



Jt STORY OF RAMONA + 

Mr. Kinney is still a very active man, daily to 
be seen at his desk in " Venice of Amer- 



ica." 



The carriage in which Mrs. Jackson com- 
menced her journey through Southern Cali- 
fornia was owned and driven by Mr. N. H. 
Mitchell, who now resides in Los Angeles. 
The start was made from Anaheim, twenty-six 
miles from Los Angeles. The occupants of the 
carriage were Mrs. Jackson, Mr. Abbot Kin- 
ney, Mr. Henry Sandham and Mr. N. H. 
Mitchell. Mr. Mitchell has contributed this 
statement of his association with Mrs. Jack- 
son: 

"I first met Mrs. Helen Hunt Jackson at 
Anaheim, near Los Angeles, in April, 1883. 
She came there in company with Mr. Ab- 
bot Kinney and Mr. Henry Sandham, the 
artist. 

" Mrs. Jackson was seeking someone who 
was familiar with the country and could guide 
her and her companions through Southern Cali- 
fornia, and especially to the several Indian 
settlements. 

" I understood that she was in California as 
a representative of the U. S. Interior Depart- 
ment, especially authorized to visit the Mis- 
sion Indians and report upon their condition, 




MR. N. H. MITCHELL, 

Owner and driver of the carriage in which Helen Hunt Jackson 
made the first part of her journey through Southern California. 




a 
c 

< 






5 



+ THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA ^ 

and recommend action to be taken by the Gov- 
ernment in their behalf. She seemed intensely 
interested in the Indians at Temecula and 
Warner's Ranch. 

" Our first stop was at San Juan Capistrano, 
where we remained two days. From there we 
visited the Santa Margarita Rancho, where we 
were guests at the palatial home of Don Juan 
Forster for two days. 

" Our journey from place to place was at- 
tended by many exciting and interesting inci- 
dents. Mrs. Jackson accepted every inconveni- 
ence and hardship without complaint. She 
seemed wholly absorbed by the Indian subject: 
to hear, to see all concerning them. No detail 
escaped her. She was ever smiling, good- 
natured and witty, but always earnest and 
determined. 

"We encountered many trying conditions, 
especially for a woman, and one of Mrs. Jack- 
son's refinement. We often camped at night. 
Pala Mission, on the San Luis Rey River, was 
reached late at night, and there we were forced 
to camp. We found an American there, who 
was trading with the Indians, and prevailed 
upon him to give us some supper. Something 
about him particularly amused and interested 
Mr. Sandham, who named the fellow ' Gari- 






* STORY OF RAMONA >. 

baldi.' No beds could be had, and we had to 
sleep in a haystack. 

" Mrs. Jackson made friends with all whom 
she met, both white people and Indians. She 
was attentive, kind and courteous to everyone. 

"I kept the carriage in which we rode until 
a few years ago. I offered to give it to the 
Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce, that it 
might be preserved in connection with the 
Coronel Collection, but the offer was refused 
on the ground of lack of space. I finally sold 
it to a carriage dealer in Pasadena, who dis- 
sembled it and used its parts for various pur- 
poses. 

"I know of many of the incidents of our 
travel to be the same as related in 'Ramona.' 
Mrs. Hartsel, whom Mrs. Jackson met at 
Temecula, was Mrs. Ramona Wolfe, the wife 
of the storekeeper there. Mrs. Jackson was 
greatly interested in Mrs. Wolfe, and from her 
learned many things concerning the Temecula 
Indians and their ejectment from their lands. 
Mrs. Wolfe was in sympathy with the Indians, 
and, therefore, Mrs. Jackson gave her special 
attention. 

" Because Mrs. Wolfe's name was Ramona, 
and Mrs. Jackson seemed so particularly im- 
pressed by her, I have always thought she was 



* STORY OF RAMONA & 

the original of Mrs. Jackson's heroine in ' Ra- 
mona.' Mrs. Wolfe never lived at Camulos 
ranch, and never had, so far as I know, any 
of the experiences related in the novel as having 
attended Ramona." 



CHAPTER XVIII 
HENRY SANDHAM, THE ARTIST OF "RAMONA" 

THE constant companion of Helen Hunt 
Jackson when in California on her In- 
dian mission was the late Mr. Henry 
Sandham. He was one of the artists of the 
" Century Magazine," had established a repu- 
tation in his work and was selected and sent 
by the Century Company with Mrs. Jackson on 
her California journey. 

Mrs. Jackson was to contribute articles to 
the magazine named, and Mr. Sandham to 
illustrate them, not with camera, but with 
pencil and brush. 

Henry Sandham was born at Montreal, 
Canada, in 1842. It has been said that north- 
ern climes are too cold to nourish artistic 
temperament and talent; but out of the Cana- 
dian wintry blasts came Mr. Sandham, destined 
to rise to success and fame in the world of art. 

The wild life of Canada was his special work, 
and his introduction in the United States was 
through the " Century Magazine," in which 
were published his sketches depicting the out- 
door life of his native land. 

[234] 




MR. HENRY SANDHAM, ARTIST OF THE "CENTURY 
MAGAZINE," 

Who accompanied Mrs. Jackson to and on her journeys in Cali- 
fornia, and who illustrated her writings and painted the " Ra- 
mona" pictures. As he appeared in 1883, while in California. 




1 1 

t/) J 
S2 1 



w > 



2 



& THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

Mr. Sandham has declared that, when a 
youth, every available minute, night and day, 
he pursued diligently and earnestly drawing, 
sketching and painting. Even the opposition 
of his parents to an artistic career did not dis- 
courage him. 

In 1880 he was selected as one of the original 
members of the Royal Canadian Academy, 
which was founded by H. R. H., the Princess 
Louise. He then went to Europe, where, with 
the money he had made and saved, he pursued 
his studies. He soon returned to America and 
located at Boston, and it was while he was re- 
siding there that he was commissioned by the 
" Century Magazine " to accompany Mrs. Jack- 
son to California. In later years he went to 
London, where he continued his work, and 
where he died, June 21, 1910. 

The Century Company is entitled to the 
credit for the coming of Mrs. Jackson to Cali- 
fornia; she was its paid contributor. The 
Mission Indians were to be her principal 
theme; but the Franciscan Missions and South- 
ern California were within the sphere of her 
commission. 

The wisdom and business sagacity of the 
Century Company in securing the services of 
Mrs. Jackson for the work resulted in enrich- 



t THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

ing the columns of its magazine with articles 
from Mrs. Jackson's pen, the best known and 
most generally read being, " Father Junipero 
and His Work," "The Present Condition of 
the Mission Indians in Southern California," 
and "Echoes in the City of Angels." These 
beautiful and historical compositions have been 
republished in two different forms: "Glimpses 
of Three Coasts," and " Glimpses of California 
and the Missions." The first two, "Father 
Junipero and His Work," and "The Present 
Condition of the Mission Indians in Southern 
California," are a part of the reading series in 
the public schools of California; credit for 
which is to be given to the thoughtfulness and 
persistency of Miss Annie B. Picher, of Pasa- 
dena, California, who has done much to popu- 
larize the works of Mrs. Jackson and honor her 
memory. 

Mrs. Jackson's magazine contributions were 
elaborately and realistically illustrated by Mr. 
Sandham. He went everywhere with his prin- 
cipal. He visited every Mission, studied Indian 
character, and sketched from life. He himself 
has said that his sketches " were always made 
on the spot, with Mrs. Jackson close at hand 
suggesting emphasis to this object or promi- 
nence to that." This statement includes the 

[236] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

drawings which embellish the " Pasadena Edi- 
tion" of "Ramona"; was indeed uttered in 
direct reference to the novel. 

" Glimpses of Three Coasts " and " Glimpses 
of California and the Missions" are valuable 
and worthy of space in every library because 
of the illustrations they contain alone. 

It was not until 1900 that Mr. Sandham gave 
to the public the "Ramona" paintings from 
which were taken the illustrations contained in 
the " Pasadena Edition." This was seventeen 
years after making the sketches for them in 
California. 

The illustrations proper number fifteen, every 
one being especially pertinent to the text. 
They make real and living things of their sub- 
jects. In addition there are twenty-six deco- 
rative chapter headings; all the work of Mr. 
Sandham. 

This work alone places Mr. Sandham in the 
front rank of the world's artists. All are most 
beautiful and interesting, but to the authors 
the most appealing of these paintings is the 
one of the meeting of Ramona and Father Sal- 
vierderra in the wild mustard. The Father 
was expected at Camulos ranch on his annual 
pilgrimage, and Ramona went forth to greet 
him. The text thus pictures the scene: "The 

[337] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

wild mustard in Southern California is like 
that spoken of in the New Testament, in the 
branches of which the birds of the air may rest. 
. . . The cloud of blossom seems floating in 
the air; at times it looks like golden dust. 
With a clear blue sky behind it, as it is often 
seen, it looks like a golden snow-storm. . . . 
Father Salvierderra soon found himself in a 
veritable thicket. . . . Suddenly he heard faint 
notes of singing. He paused, listened. It was 
the voice of a woman. . . . The notes grew 
clearer, though still low and sweet as the twi- 
light notes of the thrush. . . . Father Salvier- 
derra stood still as one in a dream. ... In a 
moment more came, distinct and clear to his 
ear, the beautiful words of the second stanza of 
Saint Francis' inimitable lyric, 'The Canticle 
of the Sun.' . . . ' Ramona ! ' exclaimed the 
Father. . . . And as he spoke her face came 
into sight, set in a swaying frame of the blos- 
soms." 

What more inspiring subject could there be 
to the artist? Mr. Sandham's genius poured 
into the picture he created, and the scene lives. 

No less dramatic, however, are the other 
paintings, each a pictured climax in the sorrow- 
ful and stirring story of " Ramona." Every de- 
tail of fact was carefully and correctly sketched 

[238] 



& THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

and colored by the artist. In the picture of the 
Senora Moreno reprimanding Juan Canito, the 
head shepherd, for denouncing Luigo, the lazy 
shepherd boy, the veranda on the west side 
of the court at Camulos ranch is readily recog- 
nizedeven as it is at this time. The Senora 
had said to Juan, " I fear the Father will give 
you penance when he hears what you have 
said," and then turned her back, while he 
" stood watching her as she walked away, at 
her usual slow pace, her head slightly bent 
forward, her rosary lifted in her left hand, and 
the fingers of the right hand mechanically 
slipping the beads." The painting is in every 
detail true to the text. 

The portraits of Ramona and Alessandro are 
idealized ones. In their faces are plainly de- 
picted the intensity of their natures, their strong 
characters, their sufferings and their sorrows. 
These pictures are so strikingly true to the de- 
scriptions of the heroine and hero in the story 
as to be readily recognized. They reveal an 
undercurrent of woe that is the pathos of the 
romance. 

Another of the paintings is a portrait of Fa- 
ther Salvierderra, in cowl and cassock, a cross 
with the Savior pendent from the neck. It 
was, as before stated, seventeen years after 

[239] 



* > 

Mr. Sandham had seen the original of Father 
Salvierderra at Santa Barbara Mission, Father 
Francisco de Jesus Sanchez, O.F.M., that he 
produced the painting of Father Salvierderra 
for " Ramona." It would seem that the artist 
desired to idealize the priestly character. The 
face is uplifted, the eyes turned toward heaven. 
All eyes are beautiful when looking heaven- 
ward. In the portrait are strongly portrayed 
those intensely devout, unselfish and saintly 
virtues attributed to Father Salvierderra in the 
romance, and actually possessed by his pro- 
totype, Father Sanchez. 

In the description of Father Salvierderra, 
when journeying from Santa Barbara Mis- 
sion to Camulos ranch, pausing many times to 
gaze at the beautiful flowers that lined his 
pathway, Mr. Sandham found inspiration for 
the painting of the Father standing, leaning 
on his staff, viewing the scene about him. 
" Flowers were always dear to the Francis- 
cans," is the quotation from the story that 
designates this painting. This picture brings 
realization to this text of the story: "It was 
melancholy to see how, after each one of these 
pauses, each fresh drinking in of the beauty 
of the landscape and the balmy air, the old man 
resumed his slow pace, with a long sigh and 

[240] 



H 

? H 



!' 
g-2 

SL ?a 



g, H 

aS 

1.0 

1 1 

"* PI 



n 



II 




^ THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA Jt 

his eyes cast down. The fairer this beautiful 
land, the sadder to know it lost to the Church 
alien hands reaping its fullness, establish- 
ing new customs, new laws. All the way down 
the coast from Santa Barbara he had seen, at 
every stopping place, new tokens of the set- 
tling up of the country farms opening, towns 
growing; the Americans pouring in at all points 
to reap the advantage of their new possession. 
It was this which had made his journey heavy- 
hearted, and made him feel, in approaching the 
Senora Moreno's, as if he were coming to one 
of the last sure strongholds of the Catholic 
faith left in the country." 

When Felipe, not yet recovered from a recent 
fever, undertook to assist at the sheep-shearing, 
he fainted on the top of the shed where he was 
at work packing the wool. There was con- 
fusion and anxiety because of the difficulty 
incident to removing him to the ground. It 
was Alessandro who sprang up the cleated 
post, seized Felipe and carried him along a 
plank to a place of safety. It was a tragic mo- 
ment, and the scene is vividly delineated by 
Mr. Sandham in another of the paintings. 

During Felipe's illness nearly every day Ales- 
sandro was sent for to play his violin or sing 
to him. One of the paintings is of Felipe's 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

bedroom, the Seriora Moreno sitting by her 
stricken son, and Alessandro, with violin and 
bow at ease, singing. " It seemed to be the 
only thing that roused him from his half 
lethargic state." Felipe would say to Alessan- 
dro, "I am going to sleep now, sing." The 
artist impressively presents the sick-room scene, 
the anxious watching of the devoted mother, 
the ardor and seriousness of the Indian singer. 

A thrilling scene is presented by the paint- 
ing portraying Senora Moreno enraged at the 
discovery of Ramona locked in the arms of 
Alessandro under the willows at the washing 
stones in the twilight. With the stamping 
of her foot, and directing with outstretched 
arm, she ordered Alessandro out of her sight; 
but " Alessandro did not stir, except to turn 
toward Ramona with an inquiring look." 
Senora Moreno is pictured in extreme coldness, 
hatred and anger, Alessandro in despair, Ra- 
mona in dignified protest; the whole eliciting 
sympathy for the lovers, disdain for the 
Senora. 

A pathetic part of the " Ramona " story is 
the journeying of Alessandro and the heroine 
on horseback from Camulos ranch to Temec- 
ula and thence on to their place of marriage, 
San Diego. " Baba and Benito," the respective 

[24*] 




MR. HEXRY SANDHAM AS HE APPEARED A YEAR 
BEFORE HIS DEATH 




GREVEJA PA AND MISSION INDIANS 

(l) Grcvcja Pa, the oldest woman of the Temccula Indians. 
(2) A band of Mission Indian shearers. " It was sheep-shearing 
time in Southern California. * * * Forms, dusky black against 
the fiery sky, were coming down the valley. It was the band of 
Indian shearers." " Ramona." 



* STORY OF RAMONA & 

names of Ramona's horse and Alessandro's, 
" were now such friends they liked to pac^ 
closely side by side; and Baba and Benito were 
by no means without instinctive recognitions of 
the sympathy between their riders . . . Baba 
had long ago learned to stop when his mistress 
laid her hand on Alessandro's shoulder. He 
stopped now, and it was long minutes before 
he had the signal to go on again." And here 
was a demonstration of the love that inflamed 
Alessandro and compelled him to despair be- 
cause of his abject poverty in worldly goods, 
causing him to cry out to Ramona, " * Majella ! 
Majella! . . . What can Alessandro do now? 
What, oh, what? Majella gives all; Alessandro 
gives nothing ! ' ; and he bowed his forehead 
on her hands before he put them back gently on 
Baba's neck." Mr. Sandham's temperament 
was in accord with this touching episode, which 
is the subject of one of the most interesting of 
his " Ramona " paintings. 

A demonstration of implicit trust of woman 
in man and of religious fidelity of the latter in 
reciprocation is the experience of Ramona and 
Alessandro in the mountains the first night 
after their elopement from Sefiora Moreno's. 
" Before nightfall of this, their first day in the 
wilderness, Alessandro had prepared for Ra- 



*, STORY OF RAMONA * 

mona a bed of finely broken twigs of the 
manzanita and ceanothus. . . . Above these 
he spread layers of glossy ferns, five and six 
feet long." Ramona laid down to rest. Ales- 
sandro made no bed for himself. He was to 
watch the night through, that no harm should 
come to his Majella. " Ramona was very tired 
and she was very happy. All night long she 
slept like a child. She did not hear Alessan- 
dro's steps. . . . Hour after hour Alessandro 
sat leaning against a huge sycamore trunk, and 
watched her. . . . She looked like a saint, he 
thought." The artist fully grasped this sweet 
and peaceful scene. He made the canvas record 
and retell the implicit trust of Ramona, the 
gallant chivalry of Alessandro. 

In the graveyard at Temecula Alessandro 
and Ramona met Carmena, an Indian woman, 
crazed with grief, who was passing her days at 
her baby's grave in Pachanga and her nights 
by her husband's at Temecula; all the result 
of American aggression in the Indians' coun- 
try. Carmena watched with Ramona while 
Alessandro went to Hartsel's in Temecula to 
secure his father's violin. The reproduction of 
this incident on canvas by Mr. Sandham is in 
illustration of the lines of the story reading: 
" Dismounting, and taking Baba's bridle over 



* THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA Jt 

her arm, she bowed her head assentingly, and 
still keeping firm hold of Carmena's hand, 
followed her." It is a touching scene, and a 
test of the artistic ability of the painter. 

The day after their marriage Alessandro and 
Ramona arrived at San Pasquale, where had 
located some of Alessandro's Temecula people, 
who wondered " how it had come about that 
she, so beautiful, and nurtured in the Moreno 
house, of which they all knew, should be Ales- 
sandro's loving wife. . . . Toward night they 
came, bringing in a hand-barrow the most 
aged woman in the village, to look at her. She 
wished to see the beautiful stranger. . . . 
Those who had borne her withdrew and seated 
themselves a few paces off. Alessandro spoke 
first. In a few words he told the old woman of 
Ramona's birth, of their marriage, and of her 
new name of adoption." Then followed words 
from Ramona, interpreted by Alessandro; and 
the old woman, lifting up her arms like a sibyl, 
said: "It is well; I am your mother. The 
winds of the valley shall love you, and the grass 
shall dance when you come." The painting of 
Mr. Sandham shows the old woman and other 
Indians seated, Ramona kneeling and Ales- 
sandro standing, bending, with his left hand 
on Ramona's right shoulder. It presents an 

[*45l 



>. STORY OF RAMONA + 

affecting climax, and evidences the genius of 
the artist. 

When Felipe, in his first search for Ramona 
and Alessandro, arrived at Santa Barbara Mis- 
sion, " the first figure he saw was the venerable 
Father Salvierderra sitting in the corridor. 
As Felipe approached, the old man's face 
beamed with pleasure, and he came forward 
tottering, leaning on a staff in each hand. 
' Welcome, my son,' was the Father's greeting, 
and he asked, ' Are all well? ' Felipe knew 
then the Father had not seen Ramona, and 
dismay seized him. And when Felipe told him 
he was seeking Ramona, the Father cried, * Ra- 
mona! . . . Seeking Ramona! What has be- 
fallen the blessed child?'" The painting is 
emotional and enlivens the text of the story to 
action. 

The portrait of Felipe, the eldest son of 
Sefiora Moreno, presents a Mexican gentleman 
of culture and character. The sombrero and 
cigarette of the Mexican are in evidence. In- 
stead of a front there is a side view of the 
subject. The picture is an interesting study 
of a young man who adored and wished to 
please his mother, who loved Ramona ardently, 
but rationally and unselfishly, and who was 

scorched by the fire that raged between the cold 

[246] 



& THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA & 

and haughty Senora and the lovable and inno- 
cent Ramona; and who, at the end of the 
tragedy, sought Ramona, discovered her as 
Alessandro's widow, took her and her child to 
Camulos, and afterward went with them to 
Mexico City, where the two were married. 
" Sons and daughters came to bear his name. 
The daughters were all beautiful; but the most 
beautiful of them all, and, it was said, the 
most beloved by both father and mother, was 
the oldest one; the one who bore the mother's 
name, and was only stepdaughter to the Senor 
Ramona Ramona, daughter of Alessandro, 
the Indian." 

The canvas story of the brutal and tragic 
murder of Alessandro by Jim Farrar is a paint- 
ing of distressing horror. It shows Jim Farrar 
on horseback and Alessandro stepping out of 
his dwelling, his hands pleadingly lifted, Ra- 
mona leaning against the open door, her hands 
to her face, the picture of grief and despair. 
Capitan, the faithful collie, is at Ramona's side. 
The painting is true to the story of Alessan- 
dro's death. 

The decorative chapter headings from Mr. 
Sandham's sketches are an interesting feature 
of the illustrated edition of " Ramona." They 
have for their subjects the Camulos chapel, 

[M7] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

the torn altar cloth, different Mission buildings, 
Indian baskets, Temecula village, Mission bells, 
and other objects described in " Ramona." All 
these sketches are faithfully correct. 

The portrait of Father Salvierderra painted 
for the " Pasadena Edition " of " Ramona/' is 
not to be confused with the original portrait 
of that character produced by . Mr. Sandham 
from life while he was at Santa Barbara with 
Mrs. Jackson in 1883. Of this original por- 
trait Mr. Sandham's daughter, Miss Gwendo- 
line Sandham, residing in London, has thus 
written the authors: "It is a very fine water- 
color, and perhaps the best picture my father 
ever painted, and has been * hung on the line ' 
in most of the world's big exhibitions; and 
though, for form's sake, it has been catalogued 
with a price, it has always been exhibited with 
the red star, ' sold,' on it, as it was my mother's 
property. It is now mine. It is a portrait 
study of the original of Father Salvierderra, 
and was painted, I believe, in the cloister of 
Santa Barbara Mission." 

When Mr. Sandham was making the " Ra- 
mona " sketches at Santa Barbara Mission, 
including the original portrait of Father Sal- 
vierderra, the prototype of this character, Fa- 
ther Sanchez, gave to the artist his cassock, 

[348] 




HOME OF TEMECULA INDIANS AND SAN DIEGO 
MISSION 

(i) The home of Tcmecula Indians, who, having been driven 
from that village by the whites, took up their abode at Pechanga. 
three miles away. Mrs. Jackson passed a night in this Indian 
abode. (2) Interior of chapel at San Diego Mission, where 
Alessandro and Ramona were married. " In a neglected weedy 
open stood his (Father Gaspara's) chapel, * * * the most pro- 
foundly melancholy in all Southern California/' " Ramona. ' 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

cowl, sandals and the hempen girdle with its 
symbolical five knots. The sandals were well 
worn, and, to quote from Mr. Sandham's note 
to the "Pasadena Edition" of " Ramona," 
"the cowl bleached and faded with the sun 
marks of the endless round of toils and duties 
so faithfully described by Mrs. Jackson." 

From a letter received from Miss Gwendoline 
Sandham by the authors the following is of 
special interest: " It might interest you to know 
that the Franciscan robe my father mentions 
in his little note to * Ramona,' is still in my 
possession. The father gave it to him him- 
self on the condition that it should never be 
used for masquerading, theatrical displays, etc. 
Unfortunately the sandals and girdle are miss- 
ing, and I fear the moths have played sad 
havoc with the robe itself, but it is a very real 
memento of the original of Father Salvierderra, 
and as such my father always held it in sacred 
regard. If you care to have the remains of the 
robe to be presented to the City of Los An- 
geles I will be very glad to send it on to you." 

The authors have accepted the offer of Miss 
Sandham, and the robe of Father Salvierderra 
will be disposed of in due time as directed by 
her. 

That Mr. Sandham was an artist of great 

[349] 



+ THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA > 

versatility is evidenced alone by the variety of 
subjects of the " Ramona " illustrations. His 
portrait of Father Salvierderra would be a 
credit to Van Dyck; the scene of demonstra- 
tive love between Alessandro and Ramona on 
horseback proves him an animal painter of the 
talent of Landseer; his Mission buildings and 
landscapes are worthy of Fortuny. 

It should be gratifying to " Ramona " lovers 
in California to know that the original paint- 
ings of Mr. Sandham, from which were taken 
the illustrations of the " Pasadena Edition " of 
" Ramona," are in California, having been pur- 
chased and being now owned by Mr. C. C. 
Parker of Los Angeles, a book-dealer and a 
book-lover, who pays tribute always to Helen 
Hunt Jackson and lauds the artistic genius of 
Henry Sandham. 

The wide range of Mr. Sandham's talent was 
beyond the ordinary. It would be difficult 
to name an artist who sketched and painted 
so many and such a variety of subjects as did 
he. He was equally brilliant with animate and 
inanimate things; portraits, landscapes, build- 
ings, animals and character scenes and studies. 

" The Battle of Lexington," bought by pub- 
lic subscription, which now hangs in the city 
hall at Lexington, is his work. His picture 



& THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

of two moose in a death struggle was awarded 
a gold medal at the Paris Exhibition. In 
Canada his best known canvas is his portrait 
of Sir John Macdonald, at Ottawa, which the 
latter's widow has declared to be the " most 
speaking likeness " ever painted of Canada's 
greatest statesman. 

The Canadian Government purchased and has 
at Ottawa several other of his paintings, the 
best being " St. Mark's of Venice." 

There was a Memorial Exhibition of Mr. 
Sandham's sketches and paintings, found in 
his studio after his death, at the Imperial In- 
stitute, London, under the patronage of all the 
former living Governors General of Canada, 
and the then recently appointed one, H. R. H., 
the Duke of Connaught; and other prominent 
persons, including United States Ambassador, 
Hon. Whitelaw Reid. One gallery was reserved 
entirely for the royal reception. Four hundred 
and sixty-six pictures and sketches of the dead 
artist were exhibited. In the list were these 
California subjects: "Death Bell of the Bro- 
thers," Santa Barbara Mission; portrait, "Fa- 
ther Salvierderra " ; "California Hydraulic 
Mining"; "Young Chinese Merchant"; "On 
a California Ranch"; "After Sundown"; 
"The Priests' Garden," Santa Barbara Mis- 



Jt STORY OF RAMONA & 

sion; " Cactus in Bloom "; " Mountain Clouds "; 
" California." 

During most of the time Mr. Sandham was 
in Los Angeles he made his home at the 
hacienda of Don Antonio and Dona Mariana 
de Coronel. Mrs. Jackson introduced him to 
this courteous and hospitable couple, and asked 
as a favor that he be permitted to be in their 
home, so, as Mrs. Jackson stated, he might 
hear stories of the Mission Indians and study 
and sketch them in life. She especially re- 
quested that the Coronels should select In- 
dians as subjects for Mr. Sandham's work. 

For two months at a time Mr. Sandham 
was at the Coronel home, working earnestly 
and constantly. His illustrations of Mrs. Jack- 
son's writings were but a minor part of his 
drawings and paintings while in California. 
" He was an enthusiastic worker," said Dona 
Mariana de Coronel to the authors. " I have 
known him to sketch and paint from four to 
five subjects in one day, all complete. My 
husband and I brought to him many Indians, 
men, women and children, dressed in their 
native costumes, and assisted in posing them 
for Mr. Sandham, who sketched and painted 
them. He was a most courteous and consider- 
ate gentleman. Whenever any person or thing 



*t THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

attracted him, out came his pencil and sketch- 
book and he earnestly proceeded to work. I 
remember well one day I was returning to the 
kitchen from the orchard, carrying a panful of 
freshly picked peaches. He saw me, and I 
had to please him by stopping until he sketched 
me. He said he wanted the picture to send to 
his wife. Mrs. Jackson and Mr. Sandham were 
congenial and harmonious companions. Both 
were enthusiastic in their respective lines of 
labor." 

From a source other than Sefiora de Coronel 
the authors have the information that Mr. 
Sandham pronounced her the best and nearest 
type of the Madonna he had ever seen in life. 
He painted a bust picture of her, which he 
kept in a prominent place in his eastern studio, 
which he always designated as " My California 
Madonna." 

Mr. Sandham's description of an evening at 
the Coronel home is interesting, and evidences 
the pleasure of his stay there, and is here given : 

" We were sitting on the veranda, whence we 
could count thirty different kinds of roses, and 
Don Antonio in the gentle Spanish was telling 
us of the California of the past. Sefiora, his 
charming young wife, interpreted for us, often 
beginning a sentence before he had quite fin- 

[353] 



> THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

ished, their voices unconsciously blending in 
one harmonious chord, to which Don Antonio, 
leaning back, dressed in full Mexican costume, 
kept up a gentle accompaniment on the guitar. 
The various ranch hands, sauntering up, seated 
themselves in a semicircle at the foot of the 
stairs, a picturesque group in their broad- 
brimmed sombreros with scrapes draped about 
their shoulders. In the deepening darkness the 
only lights came from the cigarettes of the 
men, whose interest, like our own, was con- 
centrated on the recital of the Don. There, 
with music and the scent of roses filling the 
night, we lingered, to listen to stories of the 
forgotten past, and to learn of old customs of 
the California that was. It was here that we 
learned for the first time of the singing of the 
sunrise hymn so artistically introduced in 
Chapters V and XI of ' Ramona.' " 

After witnessing the shearing of a band of 
sheep at " Lucky " Baldwin's ranch, Mrs. Jack- 
son sat in an unusually prolonged silence. It 
was Mr. Sandham who said to her, " You are 
tired?"; to which she thoughtfully and feel- 
ingly answered: " No; but for the first time in 
my life I appreciate the scriptural text, ' As 
a sheep before her shearers is dumb/ " " The 
helpless protest of the Mission Indians," wrote 



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THE GUITAR AND "THE DEATH BELL" 

(l) The guitar of Don Antonio dc Coronel. brought to Cali- 
fornia in 1835, with which he frequently entertained Helen Hunt 
Jackson. Now in the Coroncl Collection, Chamber of Commerce, 
Los Angeles. *' Don Antonio * * * dressed in full Mexican 
garb, kept up a gentle accompaniment on the guitar." Page 254. 
(2) "The Death Bell." Santa Barbara Mission, mndc in i?37- 
" On the corridor of the inner court hank'* a l>cl! which is rung 
for the hours of the daily offices and secular duties. It is also 
struck whenever a friar dies, to announce that all is over. It is 
the duty of the brother who Ins watched the last breath of the 
dying one to go immediately and strike this bell. Its sad note 
has echoed many times through the corridor." (Mrs. Jackson in 
of California and the Missions*') 



>, THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

Mr. Sandham, " had a new meaning for her 
from that moment." 

Henry Sandham's work is inseparably con- 
nected with " Ramona." In conversing with 
him concerning the novel Mrs. Jackson was 
wont to designate it as "our book." 

The original paintings from which the illus- 
trations of the novel were taken should belong 
to the public, and to this end the authors are 
negotiating with the owner, that they may be 
placed for all time in the Los Angeles Museum of 
History, Science and Art. They do mute but just 
tribute to Henry Sandham, companion and co- 
worker in California with Helen Hunt Jackson. 

" His pieces so with live objects strive, 
That both or pictures seem, or both alive, 
Nature herself, amaz'd, does doubting stand, 
Which is her own and which the painter's hand ; 
And does attempt the like with less success, 
When her own work in twins she would ex- 
press. 

His all-resembling pencil did out-pass 
The mimic imagery of looking-glass. 
Nor was his life less perfect than his art, 
Nor was his hand less erring than his heart, 
There was no false or fading color there, 
The figures sweet and full proportioned were.' : 

[fSSl 



CHAPTER XIX 
THE DRAMATIZATION OF "RAMONA" 

IT is among the strangest anomalies of his- 
trionic annals in the United States that the 
great American novel should never have 
been successfully dramatized. There would 
seem to be in the romance of Mrs. Jackson a 
superabundance of genuine dramatic material, 
a plethora of tragic as well as dramatic inci- 
dents, any amount of sentiment and pathos, 
with opportunities for the introduction of folk- 
lore and folk-song almost boundless, with the 
widest range for the costuming of characters 
and the introduction of stage effects. Yet 
fifty-three distinct failures to dramatize the 
story have been recorded, while " Uncle Tom's 
Cabin " holds the record for the largest aggre- 
gate box sales of any American play ever 
staged. 

What more beautiful characters than those 
of Ramona and Alessandro? What more sub 
lime character than that of Father Salvier- 
derra? Where will be found such genuine 
spiritual devotion as is shown in all the mem- 



Jt THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

bers of Sefiora Moreno's household? Where 
such another exhibition of true maidenly love 
as that of Ramona for Alessandro? Where a 
more chivalrous lover than Alessandro? Where 
such an incident of pure, patient devotion as 
that of Felipe for the girl his mother could not 
love? What play- writer could ask for greater 
emotional climaxes than the discovery by the 
Indian of the wondrous beauty of the maiden, 
and the joyful hint that the blood of his race 
ran in her veins? Or the unfortunate discov- 
ery by Sefiora Moreno of the two at the first 
love-making in the willows? What more 
thrilling scene than the fainting of Felipe on 
the wool-shed and the night flight of Jose to 
Temecula for the violin? 

What prettier setting than the meeting of 
Father Salvierderra with Ramona in the mus- 
tard field? What more sisterly devotion and 
innocent conception than that displayed by 
Ramona in saving Margarita from disgrace and 
punishment for carelessness in handling the 
altar cloth? What more pathetic scene than 
the deathbed of Sefiora Moreno, pointing her 
bony finger at the hidden chamber, wherein the 
Ramona jewels were kept, and struggling for 
breath to articulate the secret she had so long 
kept from her son? What more terrible scene 

[3571 



*, STORY OF RAMONA * 

than the driving of the Indians from their 
homes at Temecula at the point of the bayonet? 
What more thrilling tragedy than the slaying 
of Alessandro before the very eyes of his de- 
voted Majella? What more romantic spectacle 
than the night journeys over the mountains to 
San Diego of the homeless lovers, the devo- 
tion of the one, the perfect trustfulness of the 
other? Where could be found another such 
wholesome, genuinely good soul as Aunt Ri? 

The story is clean, instructive and uplifting 
throughout, the purpose sublime, the end sad 
but sweet. 

And yet it never has been successfully dra- 
matized or staged. The last unfortunate and 
inexplicable failure, too, occurred in the very 
heart of Ramonaland, where local color was 
in the very atmosphere, and every heart in 
the audience pulsated with fervid sympathy 
with the theme. 

Passing strange, but all too true. It was 
at the Mason Opera House, Los Angeles. 
Never a larger or more enthusiastic audience. 
Never a more fashionable or aristocratic one. 
Never an audience more kind or patient or con- 
siderate; yet never one so disappointed. Ra- 
mona was "played" till twelve o'clock, and 
the people went to their homes grieving as one 



^ THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA * 

might over the fall and breakage of a beautiful 
vase. The writer grieved with the rest, sorry 
for the dramatist, sorry for the actors and 
actresses, yet more filled with compassion for 
the audience. 

Some day a real dramatist will rise up and 
give to the American people a correct presenta- 
tion of one of the sweetest, most pathetic and 
soulful stories ever written. 



[359] 



HELEN HUNT JACKSON * 
Ina Coolbrith 

What songs found voice upon those lips, 
What magic dwelt within the pen, 

Whose music into silence slips, 
Whose spell lives not again! 

For her the clamorous to-day 
The dreamful yesterday became ; 

The brands upon dead hearths that lay 
Leaped into living flame. 

Clear ring the silvery Mission bells 
Their calls to vesper and to mass; 

O'er vineyard slopes, thro' fruited dells, 
The long processions pass. 

The pale Franciscan lifts in air 

The cross above the kneeling throng; 

Their simple world how sweet with prayer, 
With chant and matin song! 

There, with her dimpled, lifted hands, 
Parting the mustard's golden plumes, 

The dusky maid, Ramona, stands, 
Amid the sea of blooms. 

From " todfs from the Golden Gate," with permiMioo. 

J260] 



* THE TRUE STORY OF RAMONA 

And Alessandro, type of all 
His broken tribe, for evermore 

An exile, hears the stranger call 
Within his father's door. 

The visions vanish and are not, 

Still are the sounds of peace and strife, 

Passed with the earnest heart and thought 
Which lured them back to life. 

O, sunset land! O, land of vine, 
And rose, and bay! in silence here 

Let fall one little leaf of thine, 
With love, upon her bier. 



GLOSSARY OF SPANISH WORDS 



Alejandro 

Alessandro 

Avila 

Blanca Yndart 

Cahuilla 

Camulos 

Canero 

Canito 

Cilicio 

Conejos 

Corralez (Corrales) 

Del Valle 

Domingo Garcia 

Don 

Dona 

El Recreo 

1 Retrio 

Felipe 

Francisco de Jesus 

chez 
Frijoles 
Gonzaga 
Grevoja Pa 
Guadalajara 
Guadalupe 
Guajome 
Guanajuato 
Hacienda 
Hispano 
Ignacio 
Inez 
Joaquin 



San- 



A-la-han'-dro 

A-las-san'-dro 

A'-ve-la 

Blan'-ca En-dar't 

Ka-hwe-lya 

Ka-m66'-los 

Ka-na'-ro 

Ka-ne'-to 

The-le'-the-6 

K6-na'-hos 

K6r-ra-lath' (Cor-ra'1-es) 

Dal Va'-lya 

Do-me'n-go Gar-the'-a 

Don 

Do'-nya 

Al Ra-cra'-o 

Al Ra-tre'-6 

Fa-le'-pa 

Fran-the's-co da Ha-s66's 

Sa'n-chath 
Fre-ho'-las 
G6n-tha'-ga 
Gra-vo'-ha Pa 
Gwa-da-la-ha'-ra 
Gwa-da-166'-pa 
Gwa-ho'-ma 
Gwa-na-hwa'-to 
A-thean'-da 
E-spa'-no 
Eg-na'-the-6 
E-na'th 
Hwa-kee'n 



[263] 



GLOSSARY OF SPANISH WORDS 



Jose 

Jos6 Jesus Lopez 

Jos6 Pachito 

Josefa 

Juan 

Juanita 

Junipero Serra 

La Jolla (La Joya) 

La Puente 

Lequan 

Los Angeles 

Los Coyotes 

Majel 

Majella 

Mesa Grande 

Moreno 

Mortero 

Nacha 

Nachita 

Navacana 

Pablo Assis 

Padre 

Pajaro 

Pala 

Peyri 

Pio Pico 

Pirii 

Potrero 

Ramona 

Rancherias 

Rancho 

Rivero 

Rojerio Rocha 

Salvierderra 

San Bias 

San Corgonio 

San Jacinto 



H6-sa 

Ho-sa' Ha-s66's Lo -path 

H6-sa' Pa-chc'-to 

H6-sa'-fa 

Hwan 

Hwa-ne'-ta 

H6o-ne'-pa-r6 Sa'r-ra 

La Ho'-lya (La Ho -ya) 

La P65-an'-ta 

La-kwan 

Los An'-ha-las 

Los K5-yo'-tas 

Ma-hal' 

Ma-ha'-lya 

Ma'-sa Gra'n-da 

Mo-ra'-no 

Mor-ta'-ro 

Na-cha 

Na-che'-ta 

Na-va-ka'-na 

Pa'-blo As-se's 

Pa'-dra 

Pa'-ha-ro 

Pa'-la 

Pa'y-re 

Pe'-6 Pe'-co 

Pe-roo 

P5-tra'-ro 

Ra-mo'-na 

Ran-cha-re'-as 

Ra'n-cho 

Re-va'-ro 

R6-ha'-rc-6 Ro'-cha 

Sal-ve-ar-da'r-ra 

San Bias 

San C6r-g6'-ne-6 

San Ha-then'-to 



[264] 



GLOSSARY OF SPANISH WORDS 

San Luis Obispo San L66'-es O-be's-po 

San Luis Rey San L66'-es Ray 

San Ysidro San E-se'-dro 

Santa Ynez Sa'n-ta E-na'th 

Senor Sa-nyo'r 

Sefiora Sa-nyo'-ra 

Scrapes Sa-ra'-pas 

Tehachapi Ta-a-cha'-pe 

Ulpiano 6ol-pea'-no 

Vaquero Va-ka'-ro 

Varela Va-ra'-la 

Vibiana Vc-bea'-na 

Ybare (Ybarra) E-ba'r-ra (E-bar-ra) 

Ygnacio Eg-na'-the-o 

Yndart En-da'rt 

Ysabel E-sa-bal 

Zacatecas Tha-ka-ta'-kas 

Zalvidea Thal-ve'-da-a 



[265] 



MUMS m"ii