Richard Barnes Mason
|Richard Barnes Mason|
|Military Governor of California|
|Preceded by||Stephen W. Kearny|
|Succeeded by||Persifor Frazer Smith|
|Born||January 16, 1797
Lexington Plantation, Fairfax County, Virginia
|Died||July 25, 1850
Jefferson Barracks, St Louis, Missouri
|Spouse(s)||Elizabeth Margaret Hunter|
|Allegiance||United States of America|
|Years of service||1817 - 1850|
Bvt. Brigadier General
|Unit||1st U.S. Infantry|
|Commands||1st U.S. Dragoons|
|Battles/wars||Black Hawk War
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Mason was commissioned into the Army in 1817 and served in the 1st U.S. Infantry during the Black Hawk War. In 1833, he transferred to the 1st U.S. Dragoons as its first Major. He was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel in 1836. During the Mexican-American War, he served in New Mexico Territory and California, rising to the rank of Colonel in 1846.
Following the war, he was appointed military governor of California, serving from May 31, 1847, until April 13, 1849. When gold was discovered at Sutter's Mill, Mason made a report of the finding to President James K. Polk.
In the US Federal Census of 1850 for Jefferson Barracks, St. Louis County, Missouri, dated 18 August 1850, the following annotation is located at the bottom of the third page: "Brig Genl Mason died at Jefferson Barracks July 1849 of Cholera." However, The St. Louis Intelligencer reported the General's death on Saturday, July 27, 1850, (p. 3, cols. 1, 4.)
Marriage and children
- Emma Twiggs Mason Wheaton (17 October 1836–16 February 1864)
- Elizabeth Mary Ann Sally Mason (20 August 1838–19 November 1912)
- Alice Graham Mason (c. 1843–10 February 1847)
In 1882, the Post at Point San Jose in San Francisco, California was renamed Fort Mason in his honour, and served as an Army base for more than 100 years. There is also a Mason Street in downtown San Francisco.
Richard Barnes Mason was a grandson of George Mason (1725–1792); son of George Mason V (1753–1796); brother of George Mason VI (1786–1834); grandnephew of Thomson Mason (1733–1785); first cousin once removed of Stevens Thomson Mason (1760–1803), John Thomson Mason (1765–1824), and William Temple Thomson Mason (1782–1862); first cousin of Thomson Francis Mason (1785–1838) and James Murray Mason (1798–1871); second cousin of Armistead Thomson Mason (1787–1819), John Thomson Mason (1787–1850), and John Thomson Mason, Jr. (1815–1873); and second cousin once removed of Stevens Thomson Mason (1811–1843).
|Ancestors of Richard Barnes Mason|
- Gunston Hall. "Richard Barnes Mason". Gunston Hall. Retrieved 2008-02-15.[dead link]
- Caroyln Foreman (March 1941). "Chronicles of Oklahoma,". Oklahoma Historical Society 19 (1): 15–36. OCLC 1554537. Retrieved 2007-05-17.
- "Golden Gate National Recreation Area - Fort Mason History Walk" (PDF). National Park Service. p. 12. Retrieved 2007-12-18.