John David Borthwick, born (1824-1892) in Edinburgh, Scotland, to a prominent physician, was a nomadic Scottish journalist and author who received both a gentleman’s and artist’s education. In 1845, an inheritance was settled on him, and when he turned 21, he set out to see the world. After living in America for over a decade, John Borthwick returned to Britain in 1860. Originally published in London in 1857, this database recounts his life in California between 1851 and 1854. It provides detailed descriptions of mining gold and quartz in the towns of Hangtown, Foster’s Bar, Downieville, Mississippi Bar, Jacksonville, and Carson’s Hill. Borthwick also provides commentary regarding life in the camps as well as mining techniques, crime, Chinese and French ethnic groups, and public entertainment. For Ancestry.com patrons wishing to better understand life in the mining camps of early California, this database affords an informative look into a few of them.