In recent months Dr. Tiemann has focused his research into economic and banking history on the California Gold Rush. He plans to produce a series of articles from that work. In this article, though, Dr. Tiemann examines the fascinating period just before the Gold Rush, when California’s economy suffered a severe shortage of cash and an absence of banks. Read about William A. Leidesdorff, a San Francisco merchant in the 1840s, who dealt with those handicaps by becoming, in effect, his own banker.
Dr. Tiemann takes a deep look at the historical antecedents, including Ely’s Rebellion and the writings of Joseph Hawley, to show why our monetary system relies on the soundness of Government credit. Dr. Tiemann maintains that keeping the public credit in good standing is of paramount importance.