The March 18, 1850 Alta California lists Ben as being there but in the group opposed to killings....and that Sam Kelsey was one of the leaders. Sam is also named as a leader of this group in the paper on March 4, 1850.
In reality (according to the Alta California newspaper at the time) it was not Ben Kelsey who led the band from Sonoma on the murderous rampage against the Indians of Napa and Sonoma Counties, but it was his brother Samuel Kelsey and a man called "Growling Mad" Smith who led that group. The newspaper article states that some of the band were not arrested and that Ben (who was a member of the group) tried to talk his brother and others out of killing the people. Just thought I would try and clear Ben of that one incident although he was involved with the mining operation at Kelsey Diggings and did shoot the man in Sonoma for bothering his wife. Ben and brother Sam were founders of Union (later Arcata) and it was again Sam that shot the Indian there that David Leeper mentions in his journal.
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In Print This Week:
Apr 28, 2016
vol XXVII issue 17
The North Coast Journal Weekly
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