Passenger Lists: San Francisco 1800s


SS Isthmus

Arrive San Francisco

September 26, 1851
Captain Ottinger 
From Panama


September 27, 1851, Daily Alta California, San Francisco

Later from Panama

The steamer Isthmus, Capt. Ottinger, arrived in our harbor yesterday, twenty-one days from Panama. We are indebted to Adams & Co. for Panama papers.

The Isthmus brings twenty-seven passengers, whose names will be found in our Shipping column.

We notice among the passengers the name of Capt. Mott, of the house of Talbot, Mott & Co., Mazatlan. He is accompanied by his family.

We have the Panama papers of Sept. 3d. There is not a word of news.


The Isthmus left Taboga (image right c. 1915) on the morning of the 4th, and arrived at Acapulco on the 12th. The steamer Tennessee arrived there on the previous night previous. All well.

Owing to the detention of the Fremont in San Francisco, the Isthmus was despatched with the mails to San Blas and Mazatlan.


Per Isthmus — 14 pkgs specie, 5 bales merchandise.


Per Isthmus — Bolton, Barron & Co; Davis & Co.


From Panama: Thos. Fove, Juan Bandera, Henry Ohrens, Fay, J. P. Robinson, Saml P. Weeks, A. Heisterberg, Edward Ryan, John Mair, J. P. Zane, A. Roberts.

From Mazatlan: Capt. Mott, lady and three children, Miss E. Mott, Miss Fanny Mott, G. H. Davis, J. Camps, A. Somellera, A. Stair, Senoras L. Morrerro, Ochoa, Senoritas Hellena, Tulita.

The Mammoth Book of Life Before the Mast:
Sailors' Eyewitness Stories from the Age of Fighting Ships
Jon E. Lewis, Editor
Firsthand accounts of the real-life naval adventures behind the popular historical sagas of Patrick O'Brian and C. F. Forester. Twenty true-life adventures capture the glory and gore of the great age of naval warfare from the late eighteenth to the early nineteenth century -- the age of the French Revolutionary War, the Napoleonic Wars, and the War of 1812 -- when combat at sea was won by sheer human wit, courage, and endurance. Culled from memoirs, diaries, and letters of celebrated officers as well as sailors, the collection includes accounts of such decisive naval engagements as Admiral Horatio Nelson's on the Battle of the Nile in 1798 or Midshipman Roberts' on the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805 and also offers glimpses into daily hardships aboard a man-of-war: scurvy, whippings, storms, piracy, press gangs, drudgery, boredom, and cannibalism.

Life of a Sailor (Seafarers' Voices) Ships, Shipping, Migration, World Seaports.Life At Sea.Ships, Shipping, Migration, World Seaports.
Frederick Chamier
Chamier went to sea in 1809 as an officer in the Royal Navy. Like his contemporary, Captain Frederick Marryat, he enjoyed a successful literary career and is remembered for his naval novels. This book, his first, is usually catalogued as fiction, although it is an exact account of his naval experiences, with every individual, ship, and event he described corroborated by his service records. Told with humor and insight, it is considered an authentic account of a young officer's service. From anti-slavery patrols off Africa to punitive raids on the American coast during the War of 1812, Chamier provides details of many lesser-known campaigns. His descriptions of British naval operations in America, which reflected his objection to bringing the war to the civilian population, were highly criticized by his seniors.

The Nagle Journal: A Diary of the Life of Jacob Nagle, Sailor, from the Year 1775 to 1841Stories of the Sea and Ships.
John C. Dann

Great Stories of the Sea & Ships Sea Stories and the history of America.
N. C. Wyeth
Life before the mast.High-seas adventures showcasing showcases the fiction of such classic writers as Daniel Defoe, Jules Verne, and Jack London, and also historic first-person narratives including Christopher Columbus’ own account of his voyage in 1492. Vivid tales of heroic naval battles and dangerous journeys of exploration to the stories of castaways and smugglers. The variety of works includes “The Raft of Odysseus,” by Homer; Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Mermaid”; “The Specksioneer,” by Elizabeth Gaskell; Washington Irving’s “The Phantom Island”; and “Rounding Cape Horn,” by Herman Melville. Eighteen black and white illustrations by Peter Hurd.

The Project

Maritime Nations, Ships, Sea Captains, Merchants, Merchandise, Ship Passengers and VIPs sailing into San Francisco during the 1800s.



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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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