Photographic portrait of Colonel Richard B. Mason, [s.d.]. A man in ceremonial attire turns a fixed gaze towards the right. He has high cheekbones, thick eyebrows and thin lips, which he keeps in a straight line. The collar of his uniform is stiff, and conceals his neck, while two rows of buttons run down his chest beneath it.; He was the military governor of California from 1848 to 1849. "Son of George Mason of Lexington, Vigrinia. Born 1797. In 1817 he entered the service as a second lieutenant. In November 1846, he was ordered to California to relive General Kearney. He served as Civil and Military commander from May 31, 1849. he appointed Henry W. Halleck as Secretary of State who as a wise lawyer dealt with the troublesome settlement of California land titles. His report to Washington, Aug.17, 1848, which was incorporataed into the President's message to lawyers, started the Gold Rush. During the exciting year of 1849, Colonel Mason was the one man power in the State." -- From Eldredge's "Beginnings of San Francisco" Volume 2, page 688.