October 10, 1862: Chico
[Today] we were off in good season and came down the valley twenty miles and camped at Chico, on Chico Creek. As we come south the valley becomes more fertile, and more highly cultivated. Here it is ten miles from the river to the hills, of which about eight is most excellent land and produces immense crops.
Around his yard cottonwood trees had been planted ten years ago—these trees have now an average diameter of two feet—showing how trees grow here with care. In this shady yard we pitched our tent, the most pleasant place we have seen for a long time. Back of us was a fruit garden of some thirty acres, teeming with peaches, figs, grapes, etc., of which we were invited to partake ad libitum—ad nauseam if we chose.