It was seven in the morning when Mr. Fogg, Aouda, and Passepartout set
foot upon the American continent, if this name can be given to the
floating quay upon which they disembarked. These quays, rising and
falling with the tide, thus facilitate the loading and unloading of
vessels. Alongside them were clippers of all sizes, steamers of all
nationalities, and the steamboats, with several decks rising one above
the other, which ply on the Sacramento and its tributaries. There were
also heaped up the products of a commerce which extends to Mexico,
Chili, Peru, Brazil, Europe, Asia, and all the Pacific islands.
Passepartout, in his joy on reaching at last the American continent,
thought he would manifest it by executing a perilous vault in fine
style; but, tumbling upon some worm-eaten planks, he fell through them.
Put out of countenance by the manner in which he thus "set foot" upon
the New World, he uttered a loud cry, which so frightened the
innumerable cormorants and pelicans that are always perched upon these
movable quays, that they flew noisily away.
Mr. Fogg, on reaching shore, proceeded to find out at what hour the
first train left for New York, and learned that this was at six o'clock
p.m.; he had, therefore, an entire day to spend in the Californian
capital. Taking a carriage at a charge of three dollars, he and Aouda
entered it, while Passepartout mounted the box beside the driver, and
they set out for the International Hotel.
From his exalted position Passepartout observed with much curiosity the
wide streets, the low, evenly ranged houses, the Anglo-Saxon Gothic
churches, the great docks, the palatial wooden and brick warehouses,
the numerous conveyances, omnibuses, horse-cars, and upon the
side-walks, not only Americans and Europeans, but Chinese and Indians.
Passepartout was surprised at all he saw. San Francisco was no longer
the legendary city of 1849—a city of banditti, assassins, and
incendiaries, who had flocked hither in crowds in pursuit of plunder; a
paradise of outlaws, where they gambled with gold-dust, a revolver in
one hand and a bowie-knife in the other: it was now a great commercial
The lofty tower of its City Hall overlooked the whole panorama of the
streets and avenues, which cut each other at right-angles, and in the
midst of which appeared pleasant, verdant squares, while beyond
appeared the Chinese quarter, seemingly imported from the Celestial
Empire in a toy-box. Sombreros and red shirts and plumed Indians were
rarely to be seen; but there were silk hats and black coats everywhere
worn by a multitude of nervously active, gentlemanly-looking men. Some
of the streets—especially Montgomery Street, which is to San Francisco
what Regent Street is to London, the Boulevard des Italiens to Paris,
and Broadway to New York—were lined with splendid and spacious
stores, which exposed in their windows the products of the entire world.
When Passepartout reached the International Hotel, it did not seem to
him as if he had left England at all.
The ground floor of the hotel was occupied by a large bar, a sort of
restaurant freely open to all passers-by, who might partake of dried
beef, oyster soup, biscuits, and cheese, without taking out their
purses. Payment was made only for the ale, porter, or sherry which was
drunk. This seemed "very American" to Passepartout. The hotel
refreshment-rooms were comfortable, and Mr. Fogg and Aouda, installing
themselves at a table, were abundantly served on diminutive plates by
negroes of darkest hue.
After breakfast, Mr. Fogg, accompanied by Aouda, started for the
English consulate to have his passport visaed. As he was going out, he
met Passepartout, who asked him if it would not be well, before taking
the train, to purchase some dozens of Enfield rifles and Colt's
revolvers. He had been listening to stories of attacks upon the trains
by the Sioux and Pawnees. Mr. Fogg thought it a useless precaution,
but told him to do as he thought best, and went on to the consulate.
He had not proceeded two hundred steps, however, when, "by the greatest
chance in the world," he met Fix. The detective seemed wholly taken by
surprise. What! Had Mr. Fogg and himself crossed the Pacific
together, and not met on the steamer! At least Fix felt honoured to
behold once more the gentleman to whom he owed so much, and, as his
business recalled him to Europe, he should be delighted to continue the
journey in such pleasant company.
Mr. Fogg replied that the honour would be his; and the detective—who
was determined not to lose sight of him—begged permission to accompany
them in their walk about San Francisco—a request which Mr. Fogg
They soon found themselves in Montgomery Street, where a great crowd
was collected; the side-walks, street, horsecar rails, the shop-doors,
the windows of the houses, and even the roofs, were full of people.
Men were going about carrying large posters, and flags and streamers
were floating in the wind; while loud cries were heard on every hand.
"Hurrah for Camerfield!"
"Hurrah for Mandiboy!"
It was a political meeting; at least so Fix conjectured, who said to
Mr. Fogg, "Perhaps we had better not mingle with the crowd. There may
be danger in it."
"Yes," returned Mr. Fogg; "and blows, even if they are political are
Fix smiled at this remark; and, in order to be able to see without
being jostled about, the party took up a position on the top of a
flight of steps situated at the upper end of Montgomery Street.
Opposite them, on the other side of the street, between a coal wharf
and a petroleum warehouse, a large platform had been erected in the
open air, towards which the current of the crowd seemed to be directed.
For what purpose was this meeting? What was the occasion of this
excited assemblage? Phileas Fogg could not imagine. Was it to
nominate some high official—a governor or member of Congress? It was
not improbable, so agitated was the multitude before them.
Just at this moment there was an unusual stir in the human mass. All
the hands were raised in the air. Some, tightly closed, seemed to
disappear suddenly in the midst of the cries—an energetic way, no
doubt, of casting a vote. The crowd swayed back, the banners and flags
wavered, disappeared an instant, then reappeared in tatters. The
undulations of the human surge reached the steps, while all the heads
floundered on the surface like a sea agitated by a squall. Many of the
black hats disappeared, and the greater part of the crowd seemed to
have diminished in height.
"It is evidently a meeting," said Fix, "and its object must be an
exciting one. I should not wonder if it were about the Alabama,
despite the fact that that question is settled."
"Perhaps," replied Mr. Fogg, simply.
"At least, there are two champions in presence of each other, the
Honourable Mr. Camerfield and the Honourable Mr. Mandiboy."
Aouda, leaning upon Mr. Fogg's arm, observed the tumultuous scene with
surprise, while Fix asked a man near him what the cause of it all was.
Before the man could reply, a fresh agitation arose; hurrahs and
excited shouts were heard; the staffs of the banners began to be used
as offensive weapons; and fists flew about in every direction. Thumps
were exchanged from the tops of the carriages and omnibuses which had
been blocked up in the crowd. Boots and shoes went whirling through
the air, and Mr. Fogg thought he even heard the crack of revolvers
mingling in the din, the rout approached the stairway, and flowed over
the lower step. One of the parties had evidently been repulsed; but
the mere lookers-on could not tell whether Mandiboy or Camerfield had
gained the upper hand.
"It would be prudent for us to retire," said Fix, who was anxious that
Mr. Fogg should not receive any injury, at least until they got back to
London. "If there is any question about England in all this, and we
were recognised, I fear it would go hard with us."
"An English subject—" began Mr. Fogg.
He did not finish his sentence; for a terrific hubbub now arose on the
terrace behind the flight of steps where they stood, and there were
frantic shouts of, "Hurrah for Mandiboy! Hip, hip, hurrah!"
It was a band of voters coming to the rescue of their allies, and
taking the Camerfield forces in flank. Mr. Fogg, Aouda, and Fix found
themselves between two fires; it was too late to escape. The torrent
of men, armed with loaded canes and sticks, was irresistible. Phileas
Fogg and Fix were roughly hustled in their attempts to protect their
fair companion; the former, as cool as ever, tried to defend himself
with the weapons which nature has placed at the end of every
Englishman's arm, but in vain. A big brawny fellow with a red beard,
flushed face, and broad shoulders, who seemed to be the chief of the
band, raised his clenched fist to strike Mr. Fogg, whom he would have
given a crushing blow, had not Fix rushed in and received it in his
stead. An enormous bruise immediately made its appearance under the
detective's silk hat, which was completely smashed in.
"Yankee!" exclaimed Mr. Fogg, darting a contemptuous look at the
"Englishman!" returned the other. "We will meet again!"
"When you please."
"What is your name?"
"Phileas Fogg. And yours?"
"Colonel Stamp Proctor."
The human tide now swept by, after overturning Fix, who speedily got
upon his feet again, though with tattered clothes. Happily, he was not
seriously hurt. His travelling overcoat was divided into two unequal
parts, and his trousers resembled those of certain Indians, which fit
less compactly than they are easy to put on. Aouda had escaped
unharmed, and Fix alone bore marks of the fray in his black and blue
"Thanks," said Mr. Fogg to the detective, as soon as they were out of
"No thanks are necessary," replied. Fix; "but let us go."
"To a tailor's."
Such a visit was, indeed, opportune. The clothing of both Mr. Fogg and
Fix was in rags, as if they had themselves been actively engaged in the
contest between Camerfield and Mandiboy. An hour after, they were once
more suitably attired, and with Aouda returned to the International
Passepartout was waiting for his master, armed with half a dozen
six-barrelled revolvers. When he perceived Fix, he knit his brows; but
Aouda having, in a few words, told him of their adventure, his
countenance resumed its placid expression. Fix evidently was no longer
an enemy, but an ally; he was faithfully keeping his word.
Dinner over, the coach which was to convey the passengers and their
luggage to the station drew up to the door. As he was getting in, Mr.
Fogg said to Fix, "You have not seen this Colonel Proctor again?"
"I will come back to America to find him," said Phileas Fogg calmly.
"It would not be right for an Englishman to permit himself to be
treated in that way, without retaliating."
The detective smiled, but did not reply. It was clear that Mr. Fogg
was one of those Englishmen who, while they do not tolerate duelling at
home, fight abroad when their honour is attacked.
At a quarter before six the travellers reached the station, and found
the train ready to depart. As he was about to enter it, Mr. Fogg
called a porter, and said to him: "My friend, was there not some
trouble to-day in San Francisco?"
"It was a political meeting, sir," replied the porter.
"But I thought there was a great deal of disturbance in the streets."
"It was only a meeting assembled for an election."
"The election of a general-in-chief, no doubt?" asked Mr. Fogg.
"No, sir; of a justice of the peace."
Phileas Fogg got into the train, which started off at full speed.