Snow Mountain Passage (2001)

Cover of book Snow Mountain Passage
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Categories: Fiction
That night in the hotel saloon all the tables are crowded. Men stand shoulder to shoulder along the bar and around the shadowed edges of the room. No one remembers a gathering this size in the town o...f Yerba Buena, two hundred men at least, and more pushing in from outside. The chatter is high. They are drinking fast and talking fast, talking about victories and the price of land and the fate of this unfortunate wagon party lost somewhere in the Sierras, which calls forth tales of their own brushes with disease and injury and death as they made their various ways across the continent or across the Pacific or around Cape Horn.
Now Bartlett is banging on the bar with an empty bottle. He bangs until the chatter settles. He wears his tailored coat, his maroon vest. Like a bantam rooster he stands with feet planted and swelling chest.
“Gentlemen, gentlemen!” he proclaims. “It is my duty and honor to call this meeting to order.”
“Good luck, your majesty,” calls someone from the bar.
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Snow Mountain Passage
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