BILL NUMBER: ACR 131	CHAPTERED
	BILL TEXT

	RESOLUTION CHAPTER  41
	FILED WITH SECRETARY OF STATE  MAY 3, 2004
	ADOPTED IN SENATE  APRIL 29, 2004
	ADOPTED IN ASSEMBLY  SEPTEMBER 3, 2003

INTRODUCED BY   Assembly Member Cox
   (Principal coauthor:  Assembly Member Steinberg)
   (Coauthor:  Assembly Member Dymally)

                        AUGUST 18, 2003

   Assembly Concurrent Resolution No. 131--Relative to the William
Alexander Leidesdorff, Jr. Memorial Highway.


	LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


   ACR 131, Cox.  William Alexander Leidesdorff, Jr. Memorial
Highway.
   This measure would designate a specified portion of State Highway
Route 50 as the William Alexander Leidesdorff, Jr. Memorial Highway.

   The measure would also request the Department of Transportation to
determine the cost of appropriate plaques and markers showing that
special designation and, upon receiving donations from nonstate
sources covering that cost, to erect those plaques and markers.




   WHEREAS, William Alexander Leidesdorff, Jr. was a prominent civic
leader and pioneer in the successful quest for California to become
the 31st state in the United States.  He was elected Treasurer of the
City of San Francisco, owned the largest home in the city,
constructed the first City Hotel, built the first commercial shipping
warehouse, and donated the land to build the first public school in
California; and
   WHEREAS, In 1810, William Alexander Leidesdorff, Jr. was born in
St. Croix, Virgin Islands, to Anna Marie Sparks, an African woman,
and William Leidesdorff, Sr., a citizen of Denmark, and died in 1848
of brain fever.  He is buried near the entrance of the Old San
Francisco Mission Delores Sanctuary; and
   WHEREAS, In 1841, William Alexander Leidesdorff, Jr. sailed the
first United States shipping vessel, the Julia Ann, into the sleepy
Mexican fishing Village of Yerba Buena, modern day San Francisco, to
establish a world maritime center; and
   WHEREAS, In 1843, William Alexander Leidesdorff, Jr. was
naturalized as a Mexican citizen in order to facilitate acquiring a
vast land grant from the Mexican authorities in the Sacramento
Valley, and was an early advocate of creating dual United States
citizenship; and
   WHEREAS, In 1844, William Alexander Leidesdorff, Jr. obtained
title to Rancho Rio de Los Americanos, well over 35,000 acres of
prime real estate along the south bank of the American River.  His
global trade and commerce projects financed, developed, and helped
stabilize the Sacramento Valley; and
   WHEREAS, In 1845, William Alexander Leidesdorff, Jr. accepted the
position of United States Vice-Consul to the Mexican Alta California
region.  By serving our nation in this capacity, he was the first
African-American diplomat in history, and was affectionately known as
the "African Founding Father of California"; and
   WHEREAS, In 1846, William Alexander Leidesdorff, Jr. was an active
leader in the Bear Flag Revolt during the Mexican-American War.  His
official reports contain cherished accounts of the United States
acquisition of California from Mexico; and
   WHEREAS, In 1847, William Alexander Leidesdorff, Jr. captained the
first and only steamship in California prior to the Gold Rush of
1848, the Sitka.  His maiden steam voyage up the Sacramento River is
immortalized on the California State Seal and recognizes his vision
for increased maritime transportation of California's agricultural
products to world markets; and
   WHEREAS, In 1848, prior to his untimely death, William Alexander
Leidesdorff, Jr. received official notification of vast quantities of
gold on his immense cattle and wheat ranch along today's State
Highway Route 50 corridor; and
   WHEREAS, It is a fitting tribute to the legacy of a great American
pioneer that a portion of State Highway Route 50 be named the
"William Alexander Leidesdorff, Jr. Memorial Highway"; now,
therefore, be it
   Resolved by the Assembly of the State of California, the Senate
thereof concurring, That the Legislature hereby officially designates
the portion of State Highway Route 50 from Bradshaw Road to the
eastern Sacramento County Line the William Alexander Leidesdorff, Jr.
Memorial Highway; and be it further
   Resolved, That the Department of Transportation is requested to
determine the cost of appropriate plaques and markers, consistent
with the signing requirements for the state highway system, showing
the special designation, and upon receiving donations from the
Leidesdorff Project and other nonstate sources sufficient to cover
that cost, to erect those plaques and markers; and be it further
   Resolved, That the Chief Clerk of the Assembly transmit copies of
this resolution to the Department of Transportation and to the author
for appropriate distribution.