In 1848 Captain George Chase and William Bowers Bourn, caught wind of the Gold Rush. The gentlemen were business partners, well-established in New York and not about to let an opportunity pass them by! It was soon decided that the Captain would sail to California with a load of wares for sale. After a 7-1/2 month voyage, around Cape Horn, South America, he arrived into the San Francisco Bay in 1849 to find the rough and muddy, soon-to-be city of San Francisco.
Captain Chase quickly realized that California, primitive as it was with modern amenities, was poised for greatness – and men of a certain mindset were sure to prosper. In short order, WB made his way out west to San Francisco, with his new bride Sarah Chase, the Captain’s daughter, arriving by 1854. The families, now linked by marriage, got to work in the City by the Bay – the Captain kept sailing and WB Bourn involved himself in a plethora of emerging industries – banking, insurance, gold, silver and utilities (to name a few). Several blossomed into lucrative ventures,
including ownership of California’s largest hard-rock gold mine (the Empire Mine, Grass Valley, CA) and San Francisco’s water system (Spring Valley Water Company).
Over the years, the family sought rest and relaxation in the Napa Valley, visiting some of the original hot spring resorts. Given the serenity and beauty of the Valley, it’s easy to understand why WB & Sarah purchased our beautiful vineyard property as a weekend and summer spot in 1872. Just think – our land has been growing grapes for over 150 years! Subsequently, the youngest of their five children, Maud, married William Alston Hayne and it has been known as the Hayne Vineyard ever since.
Long story longer – if it wasn’t for the Captain’s gumption and the Bourn’s hard work and dedication (which many called Luck), we wouldn’t be here today. We take pride in honoring their stories and trust that you feel it with every sip of Chase wine.