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Written through Timothy Sexton, LeslyAviles

An unnamed narrator recalls a time thirty-five years earlier when he to be prospecting because that gold along California’s Stanislaus River near the negotiation of Tuttletown, less than a decade after the exploration at Sutter’s Mill set in movement the gold rush. The sets the phase with storage of digging for dirt and also descriptions the the natural beauty of the area. In comparison lies the abandoned cabins and cottages of those who collection out to strike it affluent but, like so many, failed to do their golden dreams come true. Those that have stayed roughly are grizzled, poor and also premature aged: “living dead men.”

One such example is Henry who the prospector describes as life in a cottage the is peculiarly out of place: well-tended, special a prospering garden outside and also framed lithographs and china bowl inside. The owner invites the narrator in to do himself at house “as to be the practice of the day” together Grandpa Simpson could say. The conversation moves approximately to the decidedly feminine touch at occupational in the interior décor and also Henry educates the narrator that his wife turned nineteen on her last birthday. I m sorry just likewise happened to it is in the work they wed.

The occasions so defined take place on Wednesday and the narrator learns the she is away and also scheduled to return Saturday night. V each pass day, the narrator’s anticipation of conference the woman intensifies. In the interim, the meets an ext prospectors together they casually fall in because that a visit and also inquire regarding the state of her return. They also drop by come hear Henry review her latest correspondence. Saturday evening arrives and the narrator and also Henry are joined by some of the grizzled miners. Curiously, she does not arrive in ~ the supposed time, causing Henry to grow anxious to the allude that he actually faints and must be helped to bed by his acquaintances. As they make plans come leave, the narrator pleads with them to wait, believing the the woman has only to be delayed slightly and will surely show up sooner quite than later.

At that point, they take the narrator aside and reveal the tragic truth of the situation: nineteen years earlier his wife left summary to visit she family and on her way back was recorded during one Indian raid and also never checked out since. She true fate stays unknown.

Henry has never been completely sane ever before since, constantly going v the an extremely same routine every year around this time: the anniversary the the raid. End the years, the various other prospectors have also taken component in the ritual. When it began, there were twenty-seven companions to look after ~ Henry. Just three space still left and in order to facilitate events they have actually taken to slipping your friend a sedative so the he goes come sleep fairly than briefly go totally mad through memory and grief.

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Next SectionCharacter ListPrevious SectionAbout The Californian’s TaleHow To cite https://www.charline-picon.com/the-californians-tale/study-guide/summary in MLA FormatSexton, Timothy, Lesly Aviles. "The Californian’s tale Summary". charline-picon.com, 29 January 2020 Web. Point out this page