In the backwater burg of San Luis Obispo, for many years after California became a U.S. state in 1850, holidays associated with Mexico were celebrated with more gusto than American holidays.
It took a long time for Anglos to outnumber Mexican and Indian natives in the region. There was no gold, no major port and much of the prime land was tied up in Spanish Land grant era ranchos.
In 1877 it had been less than 10 years since the first newspaper had been published in the county, and a share of second newspaper, The Tribune, was being sold. The paper was under the direction of O.F. Thornton with printers J.K. Tuley and W.W. Waters Jr. assuming half interest from founding printer H.S. Rembaugh.
It had been a eventful decade for newspapers in the county.
Two had been founded and failed, the Pioneer and the Democratic Standard.
The Tribune was in it’s fifth ownership transition and though editor O.F. Thornton didn’t know it at the time, he would be out as editor of the Tribune within two years.
Careful readers of the “4th of July 1877″ ad will find his replacement, Geo. B. Staniford, as part of the Honorary Committee.
Hopefully the Good Will Fire Co., No. 2 had secured a cannon for the celebration. Apparently the alternative, anvil firing, was not the safest idea.