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That's not stuck in the past


Some cities were founded by warriors, prophets, or idealistic visionaries. The man who established Oakland was an unscrupulous lawyer looking to get rich quick. This 1877 newspaper quote captures the sentiment shared by many residents about The Town’s first mayor: “If the early settlers had taken Horace W. Carpentier to a convenient tree and hung him, as they frequently threatened to do, the act would have been beneficial to immediate posterity.”

Featuring an interview with local historian and author Dennis Evanosky, this episode travels back to Oakland’s origins to explore what made our founding father such a widely detested villain. Listen to the story via Apple, SoundCloud, Spotify, or wherever you get podcasts.

*Title image: “This is the earliest known view of Oakland. Probably drawn between 1852 and 1854… The view looks up Broadway from its lower end near the estuary” [Caption via “Oakland: The Story of a City,” published by Oakland Heritage Alliance.]

“Horace Carpentier might have easily won a contest for most hated man in Northern California,” according to Beth Bagwell, the author of “Oakland: The Story of a City.”
This vintage newspaper caption describes Horace Carpentier as “shrewd.” In other media coverage, he has been described as “rascally,” “slippery,” and “evil.” Listen to the episode to hear why. [Image from the Oakland History Center archives]

Listen to the episode via Apple, SoundCloud, Spotify, or wherever you get podcasts.

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“He stole the town”

Oakland's founding father was a villain
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