Finding Aid of the Robert Birnie Memoir C057717

Finding aid prepared by K. Ransick and C. Miller
Society of California Pioneers
300 Fourth Street
San Francisco, CA, 94107-1272
(415) 959-1849
July 12, 2011

Title: Birnie, Robert, Memoirs
Identifier/Call Number: C057717
Contributing Institution: Society of California Pioneers
Language of Material: English
Physical Description: 1.0 folder 1 item
Date (inclusive): 1824-1859
Abstract: The folder contains a memoir of Robert Birnie’s life and experiences in pioneer California.
creator: Birnie, Robert

Conditions Governing Use note

There are no restrictions on access

Conditions Governing Access note

Collection is open for research

Preferred Citation note

Robert Bernie Memoir, 1824-1859, The Society of California Pioneers

Scope and Contents note

The folder contains a 13-page memoir of Robert Birnie’s life and experiences in pioneer California. He discusses the life and career of his father, James Birnie, in the Hudson’s Bay Company, his own attempts at gold mining, and his travels between Los Angeles, Oregon and Vancouver.

Biographical/Historical note

Robert Birnie was born in Astoria, Oregon on February 7th, 1824. Birnie was the son of Scottish immigrants. In 1841, he was appointed a clerk in the Hudson’s Bay Company and sent to California in the Yerba Buena area. While on business in San Francisco in 1848, he saw the first lot of gold dust brought down by W. L. Brannam. After a few successful mining expeditions, Bernie experienced some losses. He married an heir of the Welch family in 1850 and tried his hand, unsuccessfully, at farming in Contra Costa County. After his failed attempts in farming, Birnie turned to real estate in the city of Oakland.

Related Archival Materials note

Institutional Records: Arrival in California, Sept. 13, 1841 Action Date, June 7, 1869

Existence and Location of Originals note

The Society of California Pioneers, 300 Fourth Street, San Francisco, CA, 94107

Subjects and Indexing Terms

Hudson's Bay Company.
San Francisco Bay Area (Calif.)--History