At the end of the mesa, some oil prospecting was being done, and at the time of our visit there was one shaft sunk. Although there are numerous deposits of oil to be found in and about these cliffs, the output thus far has not exceeded a barrel a day. Yet who can tell what rich veins may lie beneath this mesa.
On Duxbury Reef, a succession of small rocks extending farther out into the ocean, there is said to be found at low tide gas escaping from the rocks, which, being ignited occasionally by fishermen, does not become extinguished until the tide rises.
At the other extremity of the town is to me the most interesting section of Bolinas, for it was here that the first settlement was made. The name Bolinas--then spelled Baulinas--is believed by some to
THE BOLINAS STAGE.
signify stormy and untamed, while others accredit it to
be the name of an Indian girl.
disposed of the grant to his brother-in-law, Gregorio Briones, of whom tradition says there were few so honest, upright and brave as this dignified son of Spain, who died respected and beloved by all who knew him.
It was in the days before the "Gringo" came, when peace and plenty reigned throughout this land, and hospitality was proverbial to every household, that Gregorio Briones settled in Bolinas.
To be a skillful horseman and expert vaquero was all that
A GLIMPSE OF BOLINAS.
was then required, for as cattle could live and thrive
all the year round on the hills, there was no necessity for
making hay for winter feed, or building stables for winter
shelter; therefore, with little labor requisite, the natural
consequence was the easy, careless life led by the
Californians. Thus their spare energies were devoted to
horse-racing, dancing, gambling, and kindred amusements.