E.F. "Ned" Beale

Frontiersman, rancher & diplomat



Garrett Matthews (Kevin) : INDIFFERENT
Gilbert Warfield (John) : INDIFFERENT
Jess Connor (Dave) : INDIFFERENT
- Allegiance
- Owed one Favor (Take 10)
Jane Wilson (Judi) : none
John Jost Althaus (Greg) : INDIFFERENT
Samuel Davis (Daniel) : none

Adventure History

Beale appears as a friend and business acquaintance of Charles Wilson representing uncertain “business interests” connected to the investigation of the Mountain Meadows Massacre. Wilson convinces that players that helping Beale would be beneficial to the SVRR, and hence to the players own future opportunity.

The players run into Beale during a [[Interlude : The Long Road Home to San Francisco | Democratic Party rally & fundraiser in San Diego]] on their return from their trip to Utah.


Edward Fitzgerald “Ned” Beale (b. February 4, 1822) was a national figure in 19th century America. He was naval officer, military general, explorer, frontiersman, Indian affairs superintendent, California rancher, diplomat, and friend of Kit Carson and Buffalo Bill Cody. He fought in the Mexican–American War, emerging as a hero of the Battle of San Pasqual in 1846. He achieved national fame in 1848 in carrying to the east the first gold samples from California, contributing to the gold rush.


Ned Beale was born in Washington, D.C. His father, George Beale, who was a paymaster in the U.S. Navy, had earned a Congressional Medal for Valor in the War of 1812. His mother, Emily, was the daughter of Commodore Thomas Truxtun of the U.S. Navy. Ned was a student at Georgetown University when, at the solicitation of his widowed mother, President Jackson appointed him to the Naval School in Philadelphia. From 1837 to 1842, Beale was an acting midshipman on naval ships that sailed to Russia, Brazil and the West Indies. He graduated from the Naval School as a midshipman in 1842, and sailed for two years in Europe and South America.

In 1845 he was assigned to the squadron of Captain Robert F. Stockton, a wealthy New Jersey businessman and inventor as well as a career naval officer, who was an intimate of presidents. Beale sailed with Stockton’s squadron to Texas, where Stockton met with the Texas Congress, which accepted annexation by the United States.

After a promotion to acting master and private secretary to Stockton, Beale sailed for California and Oregon in 1845 on the Congress, but 20 days later Stockton instructed Beale to board a Danish ship they had encountered and sail to England, where Beale was to disguise his identity and seek information on the British feelings on the Oregon boundary. Back in Washington in 1846, Beale reported his findings to President James Polk that the British had been making warlike preparations. Promoted to the position of master, Beale carried packages for Navy Secretary Bancroft to Stockton, sailing to Panama, crossing by the isthmus by boat and mule, and then sailing to Peru to meet up with Stockton and the Congress in 1846. He sailed with Stockton to Honolulu, and then to California. Hostilities with Mexico had already begun when the vessel reached Monterey, California on July 20, 1846.

After reaching San Diego, California, Stockton dispatched Beale to serve with the land forces. Beale and a small body of men under Lt. Archibald Gillespie joined General Stephen W. Kearny’s column just before the Battle of San Pasqual on December 6, 1846. After the Mexican Army surrounded the small American force and threatened to destroy it, Beale and two other men (his Delaware Indian servant and Kit Carson) crept through the Mexican lines and made their way to San Diego for reinforcements. Two months later, although Beale still suffered from the effects his adventure, Stockton again sent him east with dispatches. Beale reached Washington about June 1. In October he appeared as a defense witness for John C. Frémont at the “Pathfinder’s” court martial.

Within the next two years, Beale made six more journeys across the country. On the second of these (July–September 1848), he crossed Mexico in disguise to bring the federal government proof of California’s gold. After the fourth journey Beale was promoted to Lieutenant in 1850. He resigned from the Navy in 1851.


After leaving the Navy, Beale returned to California as a manager for W. H. Aspinwall and Commodore Stockton, who had acquired large properties in there.

In 1853, President Fillmore appointed Beale Superintendent of Indian Affairs for California and Nevada. Governor Bigler also commissioned him as a Brigider General in the California State Militia to give him additional diplomatic and governmental authority in dealing with the tribes.

This was a critical time – as the Senate had just (secretly) rejected the “18 Treaties” negotiated by his predecessors. Many of the tribes had already fulfilled their obligations by leaving their lands to resettle in the San Joaquin Valley, and their was great fear of a general uprising among the tribes. At the urging of Beale, Fort Tejon was established by the U.S. Army in 1854, to protect and control the Indians who had moved to the Sebastian Indian Reservation, and to protect both the Indians and white settlers from raids by the Paiutes, Chemeheui, Mojave and other Indian groups of the desert regions to the east.

During his time as commissioner, he oversaw the appropriation of $250,000 to improve native conditions in Beale’s district and the building of Fort Tejon – and surveyed a new route across Colorado and Utah to Los Angeles, California.

His tenure is seen as a time of relative peace and harmony between the groups, with significant improvements in the humanitarian treatment of Indians.


In 1857, President James Buchanan appointed Beale to survey and build a 1,000-mile (1,600 km) wagon road from Fort Defiance, New Mexico to the Colorado River, on the border between Arizona and California. The survey also incorporated an experiment for the Army using camels, first proposed by Secretary of War Jefferson Davis four years earlier.

Beale used camels from the Camel Corps imported from Tunis as pack animals during this expedition. His lead camel driver was Hi Jolly (Hadji Ali) a Greek-Syrian convert to Islam. The camels were capable of traveling for days without water, carried much heavier loads than mules, and could thrive on forage that mules wouldn’t touch. But the camels scared horses and mules, and the Army declined to continue the experiment with camels.

Of this road, Beale has said:

It is the shortest (route) from our western frontier by 300 miles, being nearly directly west. It is the most level, our wagons only double-teaming once in the entire distance, and that at a short hill, and over a surface heretofore unbroken by wheels or trail on any kind. It is well-watered! Our greatest distance without water at any time being twenty miles … It crosses the great desert (which must be crossed by any road to California) at its narrowest point.


Ned married Pennsylvania Representative Samuel Edwards’ daughter, Mary, on June 27, 1849. They have three children: Mary (b. 1852), Emily (b.1854–1912), and Truxtun (b.1856).

E.F. "Ned" Beale

Resolute edbailey1208