“The island for sale cash payment, running around, for most bidders!” Repeated by the auctioneer Dean Felporg restlessly reassuring the people of this remarkable sale. “Island for sale! Island for sale!” Gingrass shouted, with a more resounding voice, running back and forth in the middle of a really crowded crowd.
The crowd in it was really thrilling in the auction hall’s spacious hall at 10th Street in Sacramento. There were not only a number of Americans from California, Oregon and Utah, but also some of the French who made up a large sixth of their population, Mexican, wrapped in broadleafed bibs, and high-heeled shoes and tapered hats at the ends of the South Sea, even a few Blackheads, Isomaha walking along the Trinity stream. – or Flat-headed Indians.
Let’s go on to say that the play was performed in San Francisco, California’s capital, at a time when the quest for new gold mines attracted gold bullies from both sides of the globe – from 1849 to 1852. San Francisco was no longer what it had been in the beginning, a caravan house, a landing place, a card for one night for resting on rushing crowds in their hurry to the golden areas on the western slope of Sierra Nevada. No, about twenty years ago, the former unknown Yerba Buena had gone down the path of a unique town of one hundred thousand inhabitants, built over two hills, which had not found enough space on the beach strip, but had resolved to expand to the extreme hills of its ramparts,
That day – May 15 – was still cold. In this country, which is immediately under the influence of the polar sea currents, the first weeks of that month are more like the last weeks of March in Central Europe. But it wouldn’t have been noticed by this public auction hall. The rattling bell had called a large crowd there, and the summer heat caused everyone to frown on the sweat beads that would freeze soon after the frost.
Do not think that all these feeble people had arrived at the auction house in the buying house. Maybe I was just curious. Could it have been enough fun, even if it had been enough spare, to buy the Pacific Island, whose government had put a strange whim under the hammer? It was therefore thought that no adequate offer would be made so that no enthusiast would be excited to shout. However, it was not the fault of the public announcer, when he tried to incite the buyers with his shouts, gestures, and eloquent boasting with the most attractive images.
Laughed but not competing for bids.
“Island! Island for sale!” repeated Gingrass.
“But not to be bought,” an Irishman said, whose pockets would not have found the coin’s little coin price.
“An island that wouldn’t go up to fifteen dollars per hectare when buying at a minimum price!” shouted Dean Felporg.
“And who wouldn’t produce cents a hundred!” was answered by a rotating farmer who knew well the companies in his field. “An island that is one hundred and twenty kilometers in size and covers an area of ninety thousand hectares!”
“Is it even on a solid foundation?” asked me a Mexican, old cockroach, whose own foundation at the moment seemed quite shaky.
“The island that still has unspoiled treasure hunters” continued to shout, “both meadows, hills, creeks …”
“Is it guaranteed?” would ask a Frenchman who just didn’t seem willing to grab the bait.
“Yes guaranteed!” replied by officer Felporg, too confident in his profession to convey the public’s speeches.
“For two years?”
“To the end of the world.”
“And even after that!”
“The island is all right!” repeated the caller. “An island with no pests, no beast or reptile!”
“Don’t you bird?” he was blown by a brother.
“And not insects?” spoke another.
“Island for the Most Offering!” repeated Dean Felporg without confusion. “Well, people! Good Lord? Are you there… you who move your head like a porcine mandarin?… I have an island!
“Show the goods!” somebody said, as if it had been a billboard or a Japanese porcelain vase.
And all the people in the room burst out laughing, but only half the dollar wasn’t added to the initial price.
But even if the goods themselves could not be moved from hand to hand, the map of the island was acquired for the public to see. The hobbyist had to know what to think about this piece of the earth offered by public auction. There was no surprise and no hardship. The position, the directions, the nature of the region, the elevation of the ground, the network of different waterways, the climate, the connections, everything was easy to find in advance. It wouldn’t buy a pig in the bag, and it might well have believed in the assurance that it could not be a fear of fraud in relation to the quality of the merchandise. In addition, there were countless newspapers in the United States, as well as California’s local newspapers as large daily newspapers, twice a week, once a week, twice a month, or once a month, magazines, fiction books,
This island was the island of Spencer, located southwest of the Bay of San Francisco, about a quarter of a century from the coast of California, 32 ° 15 ‘N and 142 ° 18’ W from the meridian of Greenwich.
Otherwise, it was impossible to imagine a more isolated position outside of all the shipping and merchant shops, even though Spencer Island was a relatively short distance away and so it was located in American waters. But there are regular, crooked north or south sea currents forming as a basin-like lake, sometimes called the “Fleurieu Swirl”.
Spencer Island is surrounded by the infinity of this infinitely sparkling stream of turbulence. Few of them even get it in sight. The Pacific’s big lanes that connect the new continent to the old one, either to China or Japan, are all turning south. The sailboats met at the base of this Fleurieu vortex, and even the most direct way to the steamboats would be of no use to it. So neither of them will pass on any of Spencer’s island that rises as a lonely peak of the underwater mountains of the Great Ocean. A man who would like to escape the noise of the world, looking for a peaceful peace of loneliness, would not really find anything better than this few hundred miles of coast lost island! For volunteer Robinson it would have been ideal for Kolkka! But there was a price to pay for it.
And then why did the United States want to give up this island? Was it right? No. A large nation cannot act as a whip as a private person. The right thing was this: In the place where it was located, Spencer Island had long seemed like a useless station. Its settlement would not have produced any practical results. From a military point of view, it was not interesting because it would not have been able to control anything other than the deserted Pacific region. From the point of view of trade, it would have been equally useless because its products would not have replaced even its cultivation costs and freight costs.
It would have been too close to the coast, so there was no way to get there. In a word, you used it for whatever purpose, it would have been too cumbersome and expensive. So it had been deserted since memorable times, and the “excellent practical” men’s congress had now decided to sell Spencer by auction – provided that the buyer was a free American citizen.
But the island was not to be given for free. One million hundred thousand dollars were also set as the starting price. For any money company that would have invested in the cultivation of its property and made a profit for it, that amount would have been only a minor issue if the trade had indeed provided some benefits. But, we can’t repeat it too often, it didn’t offer any benefits. Experts did not care more about this loose fragment of the United States than any of the islands hidden in the polar glaciers.
For individuals, however, the amount was still quite high. It would have been necessary to be rich to pay for such a whim, which in any case could not produce even one hundred! Must be overwhelming, because the sum was definitely cash to pay, or ” cash ” to use the American expression; And it is certain that even in the United States there are rare bosses with one million hundred thousand dollars only in pocket money – to be thrown into the water without any hope of victory.
And yet Congress had decided not to sell it below the price. One Million Hundred Thousand Dollars! Not a cent under it; otherwise Spencer Island would remain the property of the United States.
So we had to assume that no one would have enough fun to pay for that price.
Moreover, it was precisely foretold that the owner, if any, would not be the king of the island of Spencer, but the president of the ministry. He would by no means have any right to be subordinate, but only to citizens who would appoint him for a certain period of time and be able to choose him unlimitedly again. In any case, it was forbidden to plant any family tree of autochthonous ones. The United States would never tolerate the creation of the smallest kingdom in American waters.
This restrictive condition might have been able to ward off an ambitious millionaire or a thrown nabob who would have been competing with the wild kings of the Sandwich Islands, the Marquesas Islands, the Pomotu Islands, or other Pacific island groups. In a word, whatever the reason, no willing buyer appeared. The time went by, the screamer broke into the breaths, prompting the bidders, the auctioneer used his ears, but no significant head movements such as these prestigious brokers have found, and even the initial price was not even discussed.
However, it must be said that if the hammer crossed the table without ceasing, the crowd would not be tired of waiting. The chefs were still cruising in the hall, the witches running from the man to the man. Some offered two dollars on the island, including costs. Others demand a credit for taking over.
And the loud announcements of the caller continued:
“Island for sale! Island for sale!”
And no one buyer.
“Are you sure there is a gold sludge there?” asked
Stumpy, Merchant Street Spice Dealer.
“No,” answered the auctioneer, “but it is impossible, and the state gives the buyer all the rights to such gold fields”.
“There’s a volcano there at least there?” asked Oakhurst.
“There is no volcano,” replied Dean Felporg, “otherwise it would be more expensive”.
The infinite laughter followed this answer. “Island for sale! Island for sale!” Gingrass, whose lungs were exhausted, broke.
“No more than a dollar, just half a dollar, just a cent on the bottom price,” the auctioneer said last time, “and then I’ll hit! The first time! … The second time!”
“If no one says anything, the auction will be canceled! The first time! The second generation!”
“One Million Two Hundred Thousand Dollars!” These words reflected in the hall like revolvers. After a moment of silence, the crowd turned to a hissing head, who had dared to scramble that sum… It was William W. Kolderup from San Francisco.