Mar 05

Vessels wanted! Sailing to Guadalupe

Ad from the San Luis Obispo Tribune front page Feb. 6, 1875.

Ad from the San Luis Obispo Tribune front page Feb. 6, 1875.

One of the oddities in the all advertising front page of the Tribune Feb. 6, 1875 was this vertical sailing ship. Either it is riding a really big wave or perhaps the ship is sailing south from the equator. More likely the engraving was made too wide for one column. Harriman & Co. had industriously installed a wharf between Guadalupe and Casmalia and had gathered 40,000 sacks of grain from local farmers. Only one problem, no ships.
Port San Luis and San Simeon were part of a regular circuit to San Francisco, ships would come in every two weeks bringing settlers and hauling farm products. Apparently adding a stop further down the coast was not something the regular lines wanted to ad so the wharf owners resorted to an ad begging for freelance vessels.
I am surprised there aren’t more typographical errors from the hand set type era, looking at it backwards as it is being set it would not be a job for the dyslexic.

From Point Sal to San Francisco
Having the wharf completed, we are prepared to give quick dispatch to all vessels. 40,000 sacks are now here awaiting shipment.

The Piers of the Gaviota Coast website says the earliest wharf built at Point Sal or Guadalupe Harbor in 1874. It was heavily damaged and one man was killed during in a November 22, 1878 tsunami. Though the structure was rebuilt and listed as a shipping point until 1883 it would be undercut by the Pacific Coast Railway which terminated at Port San Luis. The narrow gauge railroad was a funnel sending traffic to the steam ship company that owned it.

Related posts:

  1. Don’t frack on me, lessons from Unocal’s Guadalupe pollution settlement
  2. 1878 Central Coast Tsunami