Robert R. Miller Papers MS-10

Santa Barbara Trust for Historic Preservation. Presidio Research Center
215 East Canon Perdido St.
Santa Barbara, CA, 93101
(805) 966-5073

Title: Robert R. Miller Papers
Identifier/Call Number: MS-10
Contributing Institution: Santa Barbara Trust for Historic Preservation. Presidio Research Center
Language of Material: English
Physical Description: 2.0 boxes
Date: 1752-2002
Abstract: Research notes, documents, printed matter, and drafts for the book A Yankee Smuggler on the Spanish California Coast: George Washington Eayrs and the ship Mercury
creator: Miller, Robert Ryal

Conditions Governing Access note

Collection is open to researchers.

Conditions Governing Use note

All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Associate Director for Historical Resources. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Santa Barbara Trust for Historic Preservation Research Center as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the reader.

Biographical/Historical note

Historian Robert Ryal Miller Robert received a Ph.D. in history from the University of California, Berkeley. He was professor of history at California State University Hayward from 1970-1980 and also taught at Indiana University and New Mexico State University before that. He has published 13 books and over 20 articles on Latin American history with an emphasis on Mexico and California before statehood. After retirement, he resided in Santa Barbara, California until his death in 2004.
Captain George Washington Eayrs engaged in trading voyages along the California coast between 1806 and 1813, bartering manufactured goods for otter pelts. Captured in 1813 while anchored at Refugio Cove, Eayrs and his ship were brought to Santa Barbara, where he was charged with illicit commerce and put under arrest at the Presidio. He was tried by commandante Captain Jose Dario Arguello. Eayrs was sent to San Diego and then on to Mexico where he lived until his death in 1855. For almost thirty years Eayrs wrote dozens of letters, petitions, and legal appeals, trying to get a compensation for his confiscated ship and its cargo. Finally, in 1842, a joint U.S.-Mexican Claims Commission awarded him $96,000 to be paid by the Mexican government.

Preferred Citation note

Robert R. Miller Papers, MS-10, Presidio Research Center, Santa Barbara Trust for Historic Preservation, Santa Barbara, California.

Scope and Contents note

A Yankee Smuggler on the Spanish California Coast, written by Robert Ryal Miller, was published by the Santa Barbara Trust for Historic Preservation in 2001. The bulk of these papers consist of Miller’s research notes, correspondence, and photocopies of articles, documents, and online materials used to write the book. Publication materials include a final camera-ready draft and two reviews of the book.
A separate file contains another article written by Miller in 1975 and a copy of a New Mexican census document that forms the basis for the article.

Subjects and Indexing Terms

Cachupin, Thomas Velez
Eayrs , George Washington, 1775-1855
Mercury (Ship).
California--History--To 1846
Santa Barbara Presidio (Santa Barbara, Calif.)--History.
Smugglers--California--Santa Barbara--Biography
Smuggling--California--Santa Barbara

Box 1, Folder 1

Correspondence 1979-2001

Box 1, Folder 2

Research Notes

Box 1, Folder 3

Boudinot, May Fidelia. The Case of the Mercury as Typical of Contraband Trade on the California Coast, 1790-1820 1915

General note

Master's thesis UC Berkeley; photocopy
Box 1, Folder 4

Miscellaneous articles and notes

Box 1, Folder 5

Translation of Acontecimientos en California

General note

a photocopy of a translation of Acontecimientos en California de que hace memoria, Don Jose de Jesus Pico by Thomas Savage, 1878
Box 1, Folder 6

Eayrs Inquisition Hearing 15 September 1818

Language of Material: Spanish; Castilian

General note

AGNM 61, vol. 1421, Expediente 13, Fojas 94-98
Box 2, Folder 7-9

Case File #51 George Washington Eayrs, Record Group 076 1839

General note

Photocopy; Boundary and Claims Commission/Arbitration, U.S. and Mexican Claims, Board of Commissioners of 1839; Box 18
Box 2, Folder 10

Review copy of A Yankee Smuggler

Box 2, Folder 11

Layout copy of A Yankee Smuggler

Box 2, Folder 12

Illustrations for A Yankee Smuggler

Box 2, Folder 13

Blueline copy and jacket of A Yankee Smuggler and publishers correspondence

Box 2, Folder 14

Reviews of A Yankee Smuggler

Box 2, Folder 15

Miller, Robert Ryal. New Mexico in Mid-Eighteenth Century: A Report Based on Governor Velez Capuchin's [sic] Inspection 1752-1975

General note

Reprint from Southwestern Historical Quarterly, vol. LXXIX (Oct. 1975); also includes copies of census document created by Don Thomas Velez Cachupin in 1752 and described in Miller's article