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The Barbary Coast--An Informal History of the San Francisco Underworld

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Title:The Barbary Coast--An Informal History of the San Francisco Underworld
Author:
Asbury, Herbert   
Published:   1933
Publisher:Alfred A. Knopf, Inc.
Tags:crime, gold, history, non-fiction, music halls, American west, San Francisco
Description:

The history of the Barbary Coast properly begins with the gold rush to California in 1849. Owing almost entirely to the influx of gold-seekers and the horde of gamblers, thieves, harlots, politicians, and other felonious parasites who battened upon them, there arose a unique criminal district that for almost seventy years was the scene of more viciousness and depravity, but which at the same time possessed more glamour, than any other area of vice and iniquity on the American continent. The Barbary Coast is the chronicle of the birth of San Francisco. From all over the world practitioners of every vice stampeded for the blood and money of the gold fields. Gambling dens ran all day including Sundays. From noon to noon houses of prostitution offered girls of every age and race. This is the story of the banditry, opium bouts, tong wars, and corruption, from the eureka at Sutter’s Mill until the last bagnio closed its doors seventy years later. [Suggest a different description.]

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Pages:278 Info

Author Bio for Asbury, Herbert

Born September 1, 1889 in Farmington, Missouri

Died February 24, 1963 in New York City from chronic lung problems, the result of injuries he suffered from a gas attack in WWI.

He was an American journalist and writer best known for his books detailing crime during the 19th and early-20th centuries, such as Gem of the Prairie: An Informal History of the Chicago Underworld, The Barbary Coast: An Informal History of the San Francisco Underworld, Sucker's Progress: An Informal History of Gambling in America and The Gangs of New York.

He gained fame from an article H. L. Mencken published in the American Mercury in 1926 describing the life of a female prostitute in Asbury's hometown of Farmington.--Wikipedia, Goodreads.com, and findagrave.com.

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