CHRISTIAN CONRAD DRESCHER
The prominent citizen of Jamestown, Tuolumne County, California, whose name is above, was a pioneer in the state in 1850. He was born of German parents in Germany, September 2, 1831. His father, Daniel Drescher, was born and reared in Germany and there married Miss Johannah Rothschlay, also a native of the “fatherland.” He immigrated to America with his wife and nine children and settled on a farm of one hundred and twenty acres in Marion County, Missouri, where he passed the remainder of his life, dying in his sixty-sixth year, October 8, 1850. Three of his sons and five of his daughters survive and Mrs. Elizabeth Moss, one of Mr. Drescher’s sisters, lives at Ventura, Ventura County, California.
When Mr. Drescher came with his father and mother and eight brothers and sisters from Germany he was eight years old. He was brought up to hard work on his father’s farm in Missouri and acquired some education in common schools near his home. Early in 1850 in company with a brother-in-law and a cousin and two other young men, he crossed the plains from Missouri to California. They started with five yokes of oxen and two horses. At a Mormon station in Carson Valley they exchanged their cattle for some horses and were thus enabled to cross the mountains and make the remainder of their journey on horseback. Coming by way of the old Georgetown trail they stopped at the “old works” ranch and Mr. Drescher began mining for wages in Rock Canyon at Georgetown, and was paid one hundred dollars a month and his board for his services. Later he mined on his own account on Dry Creek, four miles below Georgetown and was moderately successful.
In March, 1851, Mr. Drescher went to Onion Valley, on Feather River, and thence to Jamison Creek. He helped to open the mines at Eureka North and lost some money there, though the mines afterward proved valuable. In 1852 he returned to El Dorado County and resumed placer mining in his old camp on Dry Creek. In 1853 and in 1854 he took out considerable gold at Murder Bar, on the American River, but invested in a flume enterprise and lost what he had made, and in November of the last mentioned year he went to Columbia, Tuolumne County, and mined there successfully for some time. From there he went to Jacksonville where he remained eleven years, mining in the river with good results, but the money he made there he lost by investment elsewhere, and he later mined on Curtis Creek until 1868, when he turned his attention to quartz mining, to which he has since entirely devoted himself. He took four thousand dollars out of the H. H. Haight mine on Curtis Creek, but expended it in the development of the property, and was the owner of the Tarantula mine near the Shawmut mine, which was discovered by a Mexican in 1862. The discoverer took a large amount of gold from the Tarantula mine and then abandoned it. It was relocated in 1872, on the first day of March, by Mr. Drescher, who took out ten thousand dollars and who is one of its owners at this time. It is considered a valuable property and is bonded for five hundred thousand dollars. Mr. Drescher was personally acquainted with Joaquin Murietta, the noted Mexican outlaw who was at that time (1851) associated with William Burns, the American scout during the Mexican War. He also was present in Georgetown, El Dorado County, in October, 1850, when the Englishman accidentally shot his wife in an attempt to take from her the large eleven-pound nugget which he had previously found in Hudson Gulch, in Oregon Canyon, to pay a gambling debt. At the death of his wife he was lynched by the miners.
Mr. Drescher’s home at Jamestown is a pleasant one and he is regarded by his fellow citizens as a man of patriotic public sprit. Politically he is a Populist, but he is not an active politician and has never sought or accepted office. A thorough, practical temperance man, he never used liquor or tobacco and is influential so far as is possible to induce others not to use them. In 1879 he married Mrs. Gertrude Newcomb, the widow of George Henry Newcomb and a daughter of Edmond Parnell, who came to California in 1851 and is proud of the title of California pioneer. Mr. and Mrs. Drescher have no children. Mrs. Drescher, by her former husband, had four children, two of whom are living. Their daughter, Emma Estella, is the wife of George A. Sharrock and lives on a farm at Rough and Ready, Tuolumne County; and Gertrude May is the wife of Charles H. Deane and lives near Merced, Merced County.
Transcribed by Gerald Iaquinta.
© 2010 Gerald Iaquinta.