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    Before 1868, Seventh-day Adventists had confined their efforts to the northeastern portion of the United States. In the late fifties, a Mrs. Morehouse accepted the truth in Missouri, and with her family made the five-month trip by ox-team to settle near Pendleton, Oregon. She was the first Seventh-day Adventist west of the Rockies. To Battle Creek she sent frequent appeals for a laborer. Her requests were answered in the Review, “Be patient. Laborers may come sometime, but not yet.”MML 68.1

    In the spring of 1859, Merritt G. Kellogg, half-brother of Dr. J. H. Kellogg, left Michigan with a company of gold seekers. After a five-month trip, he landed in San Francisco, and received employment as a carpenter at good wages. About 1864, J. W. Cronkite, a shoemaker, left Michigan for San Francisco via the isthmus, thinking to support himself by his trade, and by circulation of tracts do some missionary work. These few souls had Sabbath meetings in the home of B. G. St. John, a Baptist friend on Minna St. Anxious to see the message proclaimed publicly, this company raised $133 in gold, and sent it to Battle Creek accompanied by an earnest request for a minister.MML 68.2

    During the winter of 1867-68, the Lord gave me a number of dreams about laboring in California. I dreamed of taking a ship in New York and riding down to the Isthmus, then taking another ship to California and there holding tent meetings. In my dreams that winter I suppose I took that trip via the Isthmus at least twenty times. About the same time, the mind of D. T. Bourdeau was exercised in a similar manner. He was so certain he would be sent to a distant field that he sold all his household goods and came to Battle Creek with his wife to attend the General Conference in May.MML 68.3

    Most of the meetings during the latter part of the conference were for the ministers. When it came to the distribution of labor, calls were made from Wisconsin, and several other states. Then finally, M. G. Kellogg made a very strong plea for someone to go to California. The people were amazed for California then seemed so far off, almost out of the world. Elder White requested the ministers to earnestly seek the Lord for guidance as to which field to occupy. When the report was called for on May 18, all the ministers responded except Elder Bourdeau and me. Elder White then asked, “Has anyone had any impressions of duty about California?” Then I arose and for the first time stated my impressions and dreams about California.MML 68.4

    Elder White then remarked, “When the Lord sent forth His servants, He sent them two by two. Is there another whose mind has been led to that field?” Then Elder Bourdeau arose and stated his feelings, and that he had come to the meeting with his companion and all his remaining earthly possessions, ready to go where the conference might direct. Elder White then said, “Will Brethren Bourdeau and Loughborough pray over this together and separately until the day the Review goes to press, that they may be sure of the mind of the Lord in this matter.” We most earnestly sought the Lord, and on the morning of May 31, Elder White asked, “Brethren, what is the decision?” Our united reply was, “California or nothing.” He at once penned the statement for the Review calling for $1,000 to secure a tent and send us to California.MML 69.1

    The railroad across the plains then lacked 500 miles of completion, so it was necessary to go by water via Central America. We left Battle Creek, June 8, spending two weeks in New York, purchasing a tent and supplies for the journey. Here also I was united in marriage to Margaret A. Newman, Elder Bourdeau performing the ceremony.MML 69.2

    A friend in Battle Creek, who had been three times through the isthmus, advised me, “You will be wise to secure your ticket several days before you sail. There is competition between the American Line and the Pacific mail. Go to New York the day after the Mail Line ship has sailed, and get the American figures first. With these figures, go to the Mail Line and they will give you much lower rates.” We followed his advice and were able to secure a good room in the center of the ship for $467.50 for the five of us, just $212.50 less than what we would have paid had our friend not advised us.MML 69.3

    As we boarded the boat, Elder Bourdeau’s $5 hat got knocked into the water, which he fretted about every day until we reached Panama. Leaving New York June 24, we arrived at Aspinwal, July 3, at 9:00 a.m. At eleven we were on our way to Panama by rail and arrived at 3 p.m. and were taken by tug boat to the steamer anchored one mile off shore. We were told the steamer would soon leave for California, but it lay at anchor for two days. This steamer, “The Golden Gate,” was the largest the company owned. The next boat to make the trip was a small one, so our ship took on all the slow freight it could to make it easier for the next ship.MML 69.4

    Our steamer arrived at San Francisco at 10;00 a.m. Sabbath, July 18, after 24 days travel from New York. As Brother Kellogg had given us the address of the St. Johns family, with the assurance they would entertain us, Elder Bourdeau went to prospect while I remained with the family until the trunks came from the steamer. He soon returned stating he had found the few Sabbath-keepers just assembling for meeting, and that they adjourned until we should arrive. An expressman took us with our trunks to St. John where we were made welcome, and had a brief Sabbath meeting as our introduction to California.MML 70.1

    When Elder White made the call in the Review for $1,000 to send us to California with a new tent, one of the New York City journals immediately grasped it as a news item, and stated in their paper that two evangelists were about to sail for California to hold religious services in a large tent.MML 70.2

    In Petaluma there was a group of worshippers who called themselves “Independents,” who had separated from various churches, feeling they could not fellowship with their formality and pride. When they saw the notice of the evangelists coming with a tent, they prayed that if these were the Lord’s servants, they might have a prosperous journey.MML 70.3

    The night following their prayer meeting, one of their prominent members, Mr. Wolf, was given a very impressive dream. He saw gloom and darkness settled all over the surrounding country. While considering this, he saw two men building a fire which brought cheer to the inhabitants. As the fire blazed brightly and his people were rejoicing in the light, he saw all the ministers of Petaluma come with brush and grass, throwing it upon the fire to extinguish the flames. But the more they tried to put out the fire, the brighter it burned. While the ministers were trying to put out the first fire, the two men had started a second. This process was repeated until the men had kindled five fires. The ministers lamented, “The more we put out the fires, the brighter they burn. There is no use trying to publicly oppose these men for they get the advantage of us every time.” Then Mr. Wolf dreamed that the two men were the ones who were coming with the tent. He related his dream to his brethren, telling them he must see these evangelists on their arrival for if they were the men of his dream, he would surely know them.MML 70.4

    We were not expecting our tent until two weeks after our arrival. What was our surprise on the morning of July 20, as Elder Bourdeau and I took a walk to the Pacific Mail wharf, to see the sacks containing our tent had come on the same steamer with us! Here was another providence. Our tent was among the extra freight put on at Panama for which we had paid only slow freight rates.MML 71.1

    Since our tent had come, we hurried to get side poles, ropes, lamps, and fixtures ready. We had the tent moved to St. Johns and began to study and pray about where to erect it. The few Sabbath-keepers were anxious that our first effort be held there, but when we prayed about it, our minds were impressed to go to the northwest, away from San Francisco. With all our searching in the city, we found only one place that could be secured, and the owner of the lot asked $40 a month. That settled the question about beginning in San Francisco at that time.MML 71.2

    Thus matters stood until July 27, when Mr. Hough, one of the Independents of Petaluma, called at St. Johns and inquired if there were two ministers with a tent staying with him. How did he so quickly find us in a city then numbering 175,000? On his way down he had been impressed to go at once to the Pacific Mail and inquire if a tent had come on the last steamer from Panama. As he asked, “Where was the tent?” the very drayman who had moved the tent, came into the warehouse and directed him to Minna St. So in thirty minutes from the time Mr. Hough landed in San Francisco on the Petaluma steamer, he had found us.MML 71.3

    We went to Petaluma the next day. On our arrival, Mr. Hough met us and said, “You will stay at my house tonight, but it is arranged for you to take dinner at Mr. Wolf’s.” We learned afterwards that this was planned so that Mr. Wolf could see if the two men were the ones he had seen in his dream. When he saw us coming, he said to his wife, “There they are! Those are the identical men I saw in the dream.” That settled the matter for that company, and they did all they could in securing rooms for us, and arranging for our tent meetings.MML 71.4

    On Aug. 3, we settled in housekeeping rooms belonging to one of the Independents. Petaluma had been under smallpox quarantine for a month. Our effort was among the first public gatherings after the quarantine was lifted.MML 72.1

    Our tent services opened Thursday evening, Aug. 13, with an attentive crowd. On our arrival in San Francisco, a letter from Sister White was awaiting us with counsel about our manner of labor in California. In New England, Elder Bourdeau and I had been very careful to make ends meet, but her counsel now was “You cannot labor in California as you did in New England. Such strict economy would be considered ‘pennywise’ by the Californians. Things are managed there on a more liberal scale. You will have to meet them in the same liberal spirit.”MML 72.2

    The smallest coin then used in California was ten cents. When people saw our tracts at one and two cents each, they asked, “Do you expect to sell these? There are no cents in circulation here.” We replied, “Then we can give them away.”MML 72.3

    We had packages of various pamphlets totaling 500 pages which we priced at 50 cents each. Handing us a dollar one man said, “A dollar is cheap enough.” Others followed his example, and within a few minutes our stand was completely cleared of tracts. Before the meetings closed we had sold our fourth shipment of books from Elder White who commented, “You are selling more books there than all our tent companies east of the Rockies.” Our meetings in Petaluma closed on Sunday night, Oct. 18. Although there was opposition from the ministers of the town, and even Mr. Wolf turned against us, twenty persons accepted the truth.MML 72.4

    At the close of one of the services, three men from Windsor, 25 miles north, urged us to hold our next series there, so on Nov. 4, we began in a free meeting-house in their little country village. Although the opposition we met in Petaluma followed us here, about a dozen accepted the message, among them Dr. Krieschbaum and Madam Parrot, a French lady graduate from a medical college in Geneva.MML 72.5

    It was while Abram LaRue, our first missionary to China, was chopping wood for one of our Windsor brethren that he read our publications, attended meetings, and was baptized. J. F. Wood of Walla Walla, Wash., had moved to California to “get rid of the Sabbath” urged upon him by an Adventist neighbor. He rented a farm near Windsor and, strangely enough, attended our meetings. Here he accepted the Sabbath and later returned with his family to Walla Walla where he held meetings and organized a church.MML 73.1

    Mr. Lyttaker, a Petaluma blacksmith, accepted the message and traded his home for forty acres west of Santa Rosa where he moved and set up shop. Many teamsters from Santa Rosa passed his place daily, and gave him more business than ever before. Soon he sent an earnest request for us to hold meetings, and secured the Blakely schoolhouse in his neighborhood. Because this small building could not accommodate the increasing audience, we moved to a larger schoolhouse at Piner for March and April meetings.MML 73.2

    The people showed great interest despite heavy rains and bad roads. But the creek in the valley swelled so high that it washed away bridges or covered them with water. To meet this problem, we conducted meetings on both sides of the creek, speaking at Lyttakers every other day, and at the schoolhouse every evening. We baptized eleven, and the same day voted a temporary conference organization with Elder Bourdeau as president, Robert Morton as secretary, and myself as treasurer. One of the brethren then came forward and laid a $5 gold-piece on the desk saying, “What is the use of having a treasurer unless you have money in the treasury?”MML 73.3

    While we were at Piner, an evangelist was conducting a revival in a popular church of Santa Rosa. When he learned that some of his members attended our meetings, he came out and challenged us to a two-day debate which we accepted. Such an immense crowd responded, we held it in Mr. Peugh’s barn nearby. The Sonoma Democrat reported, “Everything that ran on wheels went out to the second day of the debate.” Recognizing the weakness of his own arguments against the Sabbath, the evangelist declared, “Well, I can beat the elder in hollering if in no other way.”MML 73.4

    After the debate closed, I went into Santa Rosa and found the town all astir. One man commented about the debate, I never saw such a thing! It’s like the handle of a jug, all on one side (referring to the Sabbath side of the question).” Doctors, merchants, and even the town dentist hailed me on the street and asked, “Aren’t you going to pitch your tent here, and make your next effort in this city?” One doctor went with me and secured a lot on which to erect a tent, then found rooms for us. Lumber for seats and everything else for the tent was furnished without cost. The editor of the Democrat said, “Elder, my paper is open for you to say anything you wish about your meetings.” So we decided to erect our tent here and come in on the full tide.MML 74.1

    Feeling that we had reached a turning point where we would see more rapid progress in our work, Elder Bourdeau and I had an earnest season of prayer, and that night the Lord gave me an impressive dream. I dreamed that after we had ascended a mountain and were starting down the other side, we were faced with an abrupt rise of rocks fifty feet high and no apparent way around. Then a man appeared and told us to begin the ascent and a pathway to the right would soon appear. We followed his directions only to find a perpendicular wall to our left and a deep chasm to our right. A misty cloud covered our path fifty feet ahead, but as we advanced, the cloud moved away.MML 74.2

    Down in the valley we saw a vast company of people boarding long trains of cars. On three sets of tracks, trains extended as far as the eye could see. It was interpreted to us that the resurrection had occurred. I saw Elder and Mrs. White stepping from one car to another and greeting the resurrected saints. As our train swung around, Elder White exclaimed, “Here comes the California train! We are all going to the city!” At this I awoke, thrilled with the thought that this dream was a token of victory in California.MML 74.3

    On April 22, 1869, we began a six-week series of tent meetings at Santa Rosa which was well attended. When we presented the Bible doctrine of spiritual gifts, the pastor of the largest church in the city told his people, “The gifts were given only until the Christian church was established.” But soon a miracle of healing occurred that upset his theory and brought even more people to our tent.MML 74.4

    On April 20, Sister Skinner of the Piner district became seriously ill, and called for Sister Parrot, M.D. to give her medical care. By May 10, Mrs. Skinner was so much better, Dr. Parrot felt she could leave, and planned to spend a few days at our meeting before returning to her home in Windsor. That evening a horse was readied with side-saddle for her to ride to our house. Mrs. Skinner’s son Oliver planned to come on another horse and take it back.MML 75.1

    The horse Dr. Parrot was to ride was used to ladies, and was considered perfectly gentle and safe, but for some unknown reason, when she mounted him, he began to rear and pitch furiously, not only throwing her off, but falling upon her in such a way that the saddle struck across her arms and chest with such force as to bend the horn out straight. When her friends picked her up and carried her to the house, they feared she was dead. She regained consciousness, but could not speak above a whisper. When someone suggested they send for a doctor, she replied, “No! A doctor can do me no good. Send for the ministers at the tent. If they come and pray, the Lord will heal me.”MML 75.2

    Just as Elder Bourdeau and I were about to open our evening service, Oliver arrived with Dr. Parrot’s request. Thinking it unwise to send our congregation home, we promised to come as early as possible in the morning.MML 75.3

    Taking my wife along, we left before dawn with Jackson Ferguson driving his wagon. On arrival we learned that her condition had required four attendants to care for her during the night. She whispered to us, “Anoint me and pray, and the Lord will heal me.”MML 75.4

    As we prayed, commending her to the Great Physician, my wife anointed her. Soon Dr. Parrot began to pray in a loud voice, clapped her hands and said, “I am healed.” She arose, dressed herself, and walked to another room to see Mrs. Skinner, after which she helped get dinner. She rode in a chair on a lumber wagon into Santa Rosa where she attended the evening service free from all pain. Oliver Skinner, who called himself an infidel, was astonished and became a good witness to many inquirers.MML 75.5

    But we were not left with simply one demonstration of the Lord’s willingness to heal. Mr. Ferguson’s sister-in-law, a bedfast invalid and unable to attend meetings, requested us to come to her house and present some of the things we were teaching at the tent. So we hung our charts beside her bed and gave her a synopsis of our meetings, returning once a week throughout the month of May.MML 76.1

    On May 26, Father Ferguson was to be baptized in Santa Rosa Creek, about 200 feet from their door. Both of the sons were there with their families. The invalid daughter-in-law said, “I, too, want to be baptized. The Lord who has heard my prayers and forgiven my sins will give me strength to be baptized.”MML 76.2

    She was dressed for the occasion, placed in a chair in a wagon which was then driven into the water. Elder Bourdeau took one side of the chair and I the other and carried her to the proper depth. As we raised her from the water she shouted, “Glory!” her face radiant with the light of heaven. She then walked to the wagon and got in without assistance. She made her own change of clothing at her house, declared herself free from illness and prepared dinner for the company.MML 76.3

    Great was the astonishment of the people on Sabbath, to see this sister come to the meeting in a lumber wagon, sit on hard board seats all through the services, return to the evening meeting, then home again in that uncomfortable wagon.MML 76.4

    We next moved our tent to Healdsburg, yet at the same time continued meetings at Piner. Here opposition came from an unexpected source,-the parents and in-laws of some of our converts. Since Jackson Ferguson was one of the trustees of the Monroe schoolhouse, and had obtained a favorable reply from a second trustee, he announced a meeting there for the next Sabbath. As I rode to my appointment early Sabbath morning, I passed a man going to Santa Rosa with a load of wood. He shouted, “Elder, you are going to have trouble today! Old Mr. Morton will not let you in the schoolhouse. I am going with my load of wood but will stop and see how it all comes out.”MML 76.5

    When I arrived at ten o’clock, I tied my horse behind the building and walked in. Only the women were inside. The men were all out in the street talking with Mr. Morton who was so excited he did not see me enter. He said, “Loughborough shall not go into that house today!”MML 77.1

    “But he is in there already,” one of the men laughed.MML 77.2

    Hearing this, Morton rushed in, seized me by the arm and shouted, “Get out of this house, you liar, you thief, you blasphemer!” He pulled me to the door, and with a push sent me into the street.MML 77.3

    “What do you mean by these charges?” I asked the enraged man.MML 77.4

    He replied, “You lied in saying that the wicked will be burned up root and branch.”MML 77.5

    I calmly responded, “Those are the words of Malachi 4:1MML 77.6

    Then he said, “You are a thief; you stole my son. You are a blasphemer in teaching that the soul is not immortal!”MML 77.7

    When I made reference to a few scriptures, he began to swing his cane over my head as though he would strike me and yelled, “You are Mormons!”MML 77.8

    One of the men standing by began to pull off his coat saying, “Elder, let me pitch into that man. He shall not abuse you so.”MML 77.9

    “Just keep your coat on,” I said. “He’s really helping us more than he’s hurting us.”MML 77.10

    Then turning to Morton I asked, “How is it that I am turned out of the house when I had the consent of two-thirds of the trustees?”MML 77.11

    He replied, “I am one of the trustees, but I have changed my mind.”MML 77.12

    Adjoining the school grounds was a grove of live oaks, one of which had wide-spreading branches providing sixty feet of shade. Here under this tree our people gathered and sat upon the grass for the Sabbath services. The opposition of Mr. Morton made possible a building of our own. The owner of the two lots upon which the tent had been pitched deeded us the ground and also gave $500. Then many promised cash donations, and a contractor offered to superintend the erection of the building.MML 77.13

    Since the Piner schoolhouse had always been open for religious services, we announced the next Sabbath meeting to be held there, unaware of new opposition from Mr. Peugh, father of two recent converts. Peugh now shared Morton’s sentiments that we were Mormons.MML 78.1

    After assisting Elder Bourdeau with the Healdsburg meetings during the week, I prepared for the Sabbath service at the Piner schoolhouse. My wife said, “I am deeply impressed that there is trouble ahead. I’m going with you tomorrow.”MML 78.2

    Sabbath morning, June 19, we went with our horse and buggy to Mrs. Skinner’s arriving at 7 a.m. Here we learned that Mr. Peugh had nailed shut the windows and doors of the schoolhouse saying, “Loughborough shall not enter this place again.” He had also sharpened a huge butcher knife and prepared a long club to waylay me and kill me. After breakfast we saw him armed with knife and club, pass the house taking the road along which we had just come from Healdsburg. Of course, he did not expect us until about meeting time. I said to Mrs. Skinner, “I hope he will have a good time up the road waiting for me.”MML 78.3

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