Joaquin, the Claude Duval of California; or, The Marauder of the Mines: a Romance Founded on Truth
By: Henry L. Williams
Joaquin Murrieta was a famous Californio bandit, known as the "Robin Hood of El Dorado".
Joaquin Murrieta was the son of worthy parents, and nothing in his early youth betokened any traits of the monster which he afterwards became. . . . In the following pages every trace of his blood-stained footsteps is closely followed. Some of the facts are furnished by contemporary witnesses; most of them by official documents. He proceeded from step to step, wading deeper and deeper into crime, until quiet citizens were almost afraid to breathe his name aloud.
In addition to this being a faithful narration of the fearful deeds of Joaquin, incidentally the work gives a faithful delineation of "life in the diggings" in the early days of California, when almost every nugget of gold was blood-spotted ere rude Justice bared her death-dealing arm.
Murrieta is believed to have inspired the fictional character of Zorro by Johnston McCulley. You may judge for yourself how much of the account here is truthful and how much is sensationalized. - Summary by TriciaG & from the Synopsis