This collection contains papers of prominent Northern California banker Henry Scamman (1831-1893), who had investments in
mining, real estate, shipping, and wheat ranching.
Materials include financial records; correspondence, including letters from the early 1890s detailing Scamman's discovery
of an employee's embezzlement of money,
as well as letters to and from captains of Scamman’s ship, the bark “Wildwood.” Subjects in the collection include: agriculture;
banks and banking; Butte County and
Downieville (Calif.); merchant ships; mining; Saco (Maine).
Henry Scamman (1831-1893) was a prominent banker in northern California with
investments in mining, real estate, shipping, and wheat ranching. Born February 12,
1831, Scamman spent his early years in Saco, Maine, and left around 1850 to seek his
fortune in the then-booming California Gold Rush in hopes of making enough money to
pay off debts he had accrued in Saco and put himself on sound financial footing.
Scamman and his two brothers bought the bark “Wildwood” in 1871. This ship brought
freight to ports worldwide while Scamman owned it, and ended up sold along with real
estate in Maine to pay off debts after his death. Scamman, however, was not a
sailing man, and spent most of his time working at the House of Scamman bank in
Downieville, managing his gold mines in the Sierras, and seeing to his wheat ranch
in Butte County.
2,063 items in 14 boxes
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