Del Norte County August 22, 1993
On the morning of July 30, 1865, the sidewheeler Brother Jonathan set out from
What went wrong? It’s hard to tell, for almost every fact regarding this ‘treasure ship’ is conflicted; it either was or wasn’t overloaded, the ship had or didn’t have structural repair issues, the crew had or hadn’t been drinking, and the seas were or weren’t too severe, In wanting to bring this story to music, what’s a historical songwriter to do?
Unbeknownst to this contributor, at the very time this landmark was visited, an expedition was underway to find the wreck of the Brother Jonathan, and after nearly 130 years of searching, Don Knight and his group called Deep Sea Research proved successful just weeks later. A second dive in 1996 brought up some gold, to which
After the Brother Jonathan went down, the federal government enacted changes regarding lifeboats, and set about putting a lighthouse on St. George Reef, six miles out to sea. The lighthouse construction was finally completed in 1892.
‘Brother Jonathan’ was originally a fictional character born of the Revolutionary War and drawn in newsprint as the character to personify the
170 of the 225 who perished washed ashore and some have ultimately been laid to rest at this site.
NO. 541 BROTHER JONATHAN CEMETERY - This memorial is dedicated to those who lost their lives in the wreck of the Pacific Mail steamer Brother Jonathan at point St. George's Reef, July 30, 1865.
Location: Located in park at Brother Johnathan Vista Point, SE corner 9th St and
Google maps: 41.750792,-124.2112