Passenger Lists: San Francisco 1800s

S. S. Sonora

Arrive San Francisco

December 30, 1854 
SS Sonora
Captain R. L. Whiting
From Acapulco


The mail steamer Sonora, Captain K. S. Whiting commanding, reached her berth at San Francisco on Saturday evening at 11 o'clock, having left Panama on the 17th, at 1 p.m. She met the John L. Stephens just above Acapulco, bound down. The U. S. steam frigate Susquehannah was to leave Acapulco, for New York, on the 12th January.


On the 26th ult. Henry Downs, an Englishman, died on board the Sonora, of dysentery.

By the arrival of the Sonora we have received the weekly Panama Star and Herald of the 18th December, from which we compile the following news:

During the previous fortnight the weather had been fine and dry, more resembling the dry, weather of March and April than the height of the rainy season. In consequence, the general health has been exceedingly good. The railroad works have rapidly progressed, and all look forward to its speedy termination.

Of late, no outrages have taken place on the road. The Runnel's guard still continue to exercise the greatest vigilance; and in Aspinwall the police force, under Mr. Duckworth, preserve the greatest order.

An American named Charles Olcott arrested on suspicion of theft some weeks ago at Taboga, had been confined ever since in jail without any evidence as to his guilt. The accusers have, the Starsays, proved themselves the guilty parties. The acting United States Consul has made several ineffectual attempts to procure either the trial or release of the prisoner and that, having obtained neither, he was at length obliged to enter a final protest against Olcott's detention in jail. The Star calls upon the United States government to demand suitable redress for what this man has suffered both physically and pecuniarily during his imprisonment, and that the Taboga authorities will be taught a lesson which will in future prevent their plundering and impressing foreigners so unjustly and recklessly as they have of late been in the habit of doing.

January 1, 1855, Daily Alta California, San Francisco

$27,000 STOLEN.

A large and well planned robbery took place on board the P. M. S. Co.'s steamship Sonora, on her downward trip to Panama. The particulars, as far as they could be ascertained, are as follows: It is supposed that the plan laid to obtain possession of the money was executed during the time that the steamer was undergoing repairs at Benicia.

The treasure room is directly underneath the nursery; the floor of the nursery is covered with an oil cloth; the oil cloth had been raised, a square lined off, augur holes bored, and chisel used till the planks were separated, the oil cloth respread, and a trunk placed over the spot where the aperture had been made. It is supposed that the entry had been effected whilst the steamer was on her way to Panama. The robbery was discovered at Panama immediately on the arrival of the steamer. It was ascertained that a box containing $14,000, and a carpet bag containing $13,000, the property of P. M. S. S. Co., had been abstracted from the treasure room. $13,000 were found secreted in a water closet; the remainder is still undiscovered. The carpenter, Hunter C. Vaughn, and the boatswain, Geo. Nichols, were immediately arrested, placed in confinement and brought back to San Francisco. They are at present in the City Prison, and will undergo an examination tomorrow, before the Recorder.


January 1, 1855, Sacramento Daily Union, Sacramento, California

Note: First two names are D. D. Page and B. W. Heath, lady and infant.

Passengers by the SS Sonora, January 1, 1855. SDU

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Sources: As noted on entries and through research centers including National Archives, San Bruno, California; CDNC: California Digital Newspaper Collection; San Francisco Main Library History Collection; and Maritime Museums and Collections in Australia, China, Denmark, England, Finland, Germany, Ireland, Wales, Norway, Scotland, Spain, Sweden, etc.

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