The Life of Claus Spreckels

Join author and historian Sandra Bonura in a colorful slide presentation conversation on her new book, The Sugar King of California: The Life of Claus Spreckels.
The Sugar King of California is the astonishingly intimate story of one of the most controversial entrepreneurs of the 19th century - a rule-breaking visionary who through his sugar empire became one of the richest Americans in history alongside John D. Rockefeller, Warren Buffett, and Bill Gates. Bonura tells the rags-to-riches story of Spreckels’s role in the developments of the sugarcane industry in the American West and across the Pacific, triumphing in a milieu rife with cronyism and corruption and ultimately transforming California’s industry & labor. But there’s always a cost for single-minded determination; the legendary family quarrels even included a murder charge. Spreckels’s biography is one of business triumph & tragedy, a portrait of a family torn apart by money, jealousy, and ego.

Event address: 
Point Loma Assembly
3035 Talbot Street
San Diego, CA 92106
Books: 
The Sugar King of California: The Life of Claus Spreckels By Dr. Sandra E. Bonura Cover Image
$39.95
ISBN: 9781496235114
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: University of Nebraska Press - June 1st, 2024

Claus Spreckels (1828–1908) emigrated from his homeland of Germany to the United States with only seventy-five cents in his pocket, built a sugar empire, and became one of the richest Americans in history alongside John D. Rockefeller, Warren Buffett, and Bill Gates.


Empire Builder: John D. Spreckels and the Making of San Diego By Dr. Sandra E. Bonura, Uwe Spiekermann (Foreword by) Cover Image
$27.95
Special Order Book- call for availability
ISBN: 9781496233417
Published: University of Nebraska Press - December 1st, 2022

Winner of the 2021 San Diego Book Award
 
Empire Builder is the previously untold story of a pioneer who almost singlehandedly transformed the bankrupt village of San Diego into a thriving city. When he first dropped anchor in San Diego Bay in 1887, John Diedrich Spreckels set into motion a series of events that later defined the city.