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14
LOS ISLANDS—LOST PROPERTY


General Philip Kearny and Commodore Stockton entered the city on the 18th of January 1847. This was the only important overt resistance to the establishment of the new régime in California. The city was chartered in 1850. It continued to grow steadily thereafter until it attained railway connexion with the Central Pacific and San Francisco in 1876, and with the East by the Santa Fé system in 1885. The completion of the latter line precipitated one of the most extraordinary of American railway wars and land booms, which resulted in giving southern California a great stimulus. The growth of the city since 1890 has been even more remarkable. In 1909 the township of Wilmington (pop. in 1900, 2983), including the city of San Pedro (pop. in 1900, 1787), Colegrove, a suburb W.N.W. of the city, Cahuenga (pop. in 1900, 1586), a township N.W. of the former city limits, and a part of Los Feliz were annexed to the city.


LOS ISLANDS (Islas de los Idolos), a group of islands off the coast of French Guinea, West Africa, lying south of Sangarea Bay, between 9° 25′ and 9° 31′ N. and 13° 46′ and 13° 51′ W., and about 80 m. N.N.W. of Freetown, Sierra Leone. There are five principal islands: Tamara, Factory, Crawford, White (or Ruma) and Coral. The two largest islands are Tamara and Factory, Tamara, some 8 m. long by 1 to 2 m. broad, being the largest. These two islands lie parallel to each other, Tamara to the west; they form a sort of basin, in the centre of which is the islet of Crawford. The two other islands are to the south. The archipelago is of volcanic formation, Tamara and Factory islands forming part of a ruined crater, with Crawford Island as the cone. The highest point is a knoll, some 450 ft. above sea-level, in Tamara. All the islands are richly clothed with palm trees and flowering underwood. Tamara has a good harbour, and contains the principal settlement. The inhabitants, about 1500, are immigrants of the Baga tribe of Senegambian negroes, whose home is the coast land between the Pongo and Nunez rivers. These are chiefly farmers. The Church of England has a flourishing mission, with a native pastorate. At one time the islands were a great seat of slave-traders and pirates. The latter are supposed to have buried large amounts of treasure in them. In an endeavour to stop the slave trade and piracy, the islands were garrisoned (1812–1813) by British troops, but the unhealthiness of the climate led to their withdrawal. In 1818 Sir Charles McCarthy, governor of Sierra Leone, obtained the cession of the islands to Great Britain from the chiefs of the Baga country, and in 1882 France recognized them to be a British possession. They were then the headquarters of several Sierra Leone traders. By article 6 of the Anglo-French convention of the 8th of April 1904, the islands were ceded to France. They were desired by France because of their geographical position, Konakry, the capital of French Guinea, being built on an islet but 3 m. from Factory Island, and at the mercy of long range artillery planted thereon. The islands derive their name from the sacred images found on them by the early European navigators.

See A. B. Ellis, West African Islands (London, 1885), and the works cited under French Guinea.


LOSSIEMOUTH, a police burgh of Elginshire, Scotland. Pop. (1901) 3904. It embraces the villages of Lossiemouth, Branderburgh and Stotfield, at the mouth of the Lossie, 51/2 m. N.N.E. of Elgin, of which it is the port, by a branch line of the Great North of Scotland railway. The industries are boat-building and fishing. Lossiemouth, or the Old Town, dates from 1700; Branderburgh, farther north, grew with the harbour and began about 1830; Stotfield is purely modern and contiguous to the splendid golf-course. The cliffs at Covesea, 2 m. W., contain caves of curious shape. Sir Robert Gordon of Gordonstown used one as a stable in the rebellion of 1745; weapons of prehistoric man were found in another, and the roof of a third is carved with ornaments and emblems of early Celtic art.

Kinneddar Castle in the parish of Drainie—in which Lossiemouth is situated—was a seat of the bishops of Moray, and Old Duffus Castle, 21/2 m. S.W.. was built in the reign of David II. The estate of Gordonstown, close by, was founded by Sir Robert Gordon (1580–1656), historian of the Sutherland family, and grandfather of the baronet who, because of his inventions and scientific attainments, was known locally as “Sir Robert the Warlock” (1647–1704). Nearly midway between Lossiemouth and Elgin stand the massive ruins of the palace of Spynie, formerly a fortified residence of the bishops of Moray. “Davie’s Tower,” 60 ft. high with walls 9 ft. thick, was built by Bishop David Stewart about 1470. The adjacent loch is a favourite breeding-place for the sea-birds, which resort to the coast of Elginshire in enormous numbers. A mile S.E. of the lake lies Pitgaveny, one of the reputed scenes of the murder of King Duncan by Macbeth.

LOSSING, BENSON JOHN (1813–1891), American historical writer, was born in Beekman, New York, on the 12th of February 1813. After editing newspapers in Poughkeepsie he became an engraver on wood, and removed to New York in 1839 for the practice of his profession, to which he added that of drawing illustrations for books and periodicals. He likewise wrote or edited the text of numerous publications. His Pictorial Field-Book of the Revolution (first issued in 30 parts, 1850–1852, and then in 2 volumes) was a pioneer work of value in American historical literature. In its preparation he travelled some 9000 m. during a period of nearly two years; made more than a thousand sketches, of extant buildings, battlefields, &c.; and presented his material in a form serviceable to the topographer and interesting to the general reader. Similar but less characteristic and less valuable undertakings were a Pictorial Field-Book of the War of 1812 (1868), and a Pictorial History of the Civil War in the United States of America (3 vols. 1866–1869). His other books were numerous: an Outline History of the Fine Arts; many illustrated histories, large and small, of the United States; popular descriptions of Mount Vernon and other localities associated with famous names; and biographical sketches of celebrated Americans, of which The Life and Times of Major-General Philip Schuyler (2 vols. 1860–1873) was the most considerable. He died at Dover Plains, New York, on the 3rd of June 1891.


LÖSSNITZ, a district in the kingdom of Saxony, extending for about 5 m. along the right bank of the Elbe, immediately N.W. of Dresden. Pop. (1905) 6929. A line of vine-clad hills shelters it from the north winds, and so warm and healthy is the climate that it has gained for the district the appellation of the “Saxon Nice.” Asparagus, peaches, apricots, strawberries, grapes and roses are largely cultivated and find a ready market in Dresden.


LOST PROPERTY. The man who loses an article does not lose his right thereto, and he may recover it from the holder whoever he be, unless his claim be barred by some Statute of Limitations or special custom, as sale in market overt. The rights and duties of the finder are more complex. If he know or can find out the true owner, and yet convert the article to his own use, he is guilty of theft. But if the true owner cannot be discovered, the finder keeps the property, his title being superior to that of every one except the true owner. But this is only if the find be in public or some public place. Thus if you pick up bank notes in a shop where they have been lost by a stranger, and hand them to the shopkeeper that he may discover and repossess the true owner, and he fail to do so, then you can recover them from him. The owner of private land, however, is entitled to what is found on it. Thus a man sets you to clear out his pond, and you discover a diamond in the mud at the bottom. The law will compel you to hand it over to the owner of the pond. This applies even against the tenant. A gas company were lessees of certain premises; whilst making excavations therein they came upon a prehistoric boat; and they were forced to surrender it to their lessor. An aerolite becomes the property of the owner of the land on which it falls, and not of the person finding or digging it out. The principle of these three last cases is that whatever becomes part of the soil belongs to the proprietor of that soil.

Property lost at sea is regulated by different rules. Those who recover abandoned vessels are entitled to salvage. Property absolutely lost upon the high seas would seem to belong to the finder. It has been claimed for the crown, and the American courts have held, that apart from a decree the finder is only entitled to salvage rights, the court retaining the rest, and thus