Tales of California Yesterdays

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W. T. Potter, 1916 - California - 205 pages
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Page 73 - The pioneers of 1850 were passionately fond of the turf. They might justly boast of their horses which had sometimes drawn applause at the capital of Mexico. Now, and for many successive years, they gave full play to this passion. August 16th, 1851, Don Pio Pico and compadre, Tomaso Yorba, gave their printed challenge 'to the North...
Page 71 - ... their plunging and stamping. On either hand of the judges sat Don Luis and Don Jose. Don Luis was pale and the hand that shaded his eyes trembled as he leaned forward in his seat. Don Jose was smoking a cigarette, and only the fierce keenness of his eyes betrayed the strain. But when the horses, still neck to neck, were within twenty rods of the stake, he dropped his cigarette and shouted savagely: "Lay on the whip...
Page 67 - They looked about and saw herds of cattle, bands of horses, flocks of sheep — buf they saw no strange mare that gave promise of speed. Other parties, who did not approach the hacienda, visited the •vaqueros, beset the mayor-domo, even questioned the shepherds — all to no avail. From Monterey to San Diego there was no report of a strange horse having been brought into the country, and the mysterious "La Golondrina" became the chief subject of conjecture and the one topic of conversation among...
Page 69 - La Golondrina." She was merely a figment of Don Jose's brain, invented to ease his wounded pride — and to fool gulls. "Es bueno," Don Jose remarked, when this statement was reported to him, "it is well, indeed.
Page 68 - There were not those wanting who asserted that Don Jose had lost his head and become loco in his great desire to triumph over the Abilas. Even the brothers, sons-in-law and nephews of Don Jose...
Page 73 - And report says that Don Jose kept his word. But the gossips of his day add that he had won $50,000 upon "La Golondrina" and that he was then wellnigh seventy years of age — it was time that he should turn his mind from earthly things.
Page 69 - Es bueno," Don Jose remarked, when this statement was reported to him, "it is well, indeed." The race was set for the tenth day of September, at two in the afternoon. The course had been laid out on a level stretch, two miles south of Los Angeles.
Page 64 - ... setting of white hair and broad sombrero, was like a yellow ivory miniature in its immobility, but a welcoming smile that warmed the heart swept over it as he wheeled about at the captain's ringing call : "Ah, Don Jose ! thou art the one man in California I most wished to see !
Page 69 - unsight and unseen" was too much for any but the staunchest friends of Don Jose Morales. And, in spite of Antonio's testimony, many — even of the family — doubted the existence of any such animal as the much-vaunted mare, and based their bets upon the supposition that Don Jose would run some one of his numerous broncos.
Page 73 - The mare won by 75 yards in 19 minutes and 20 seconds. Sarco, the previous Spring, had run nine miles in 18 minutes and 45 seconds. Not less than $50,000 must have changed hands over this race.

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