Mills wrote of the extinction of the California grizzly: "During the past twenty-five years the grizzly population has enormously decreased. The grizzly is in danger of extermination. In California, where he was once numerous, he is now extinct."
With the advent of DNA analysis we are better equipped to more accurately classify these animals. Grizzly bears are a sub-species of Brown Bear, Ursus arctus. But the grizzly bears of Alaska, Northern and Western Canada, and the northwestern United States, Ursus arctos horribilis, are a separate sub-species from the California grizzly, Ursus arctos californicus.
The term "grizzly" refers to the grayish, silver, or golden color of the tips of its fur.
From The Trapper's Guide by Sewell Newhouse
1850: Missionary William Taylor: "For a couple of miles back as I came through a dense chaperel [sic] thicket, I have been on the track of a grizzly bear. His track by measurement was fourteen inches long and seven wide; he must have been a monster."
ClassificationClass – Mammalia
Order – Carnivora
Family – Ursidae
[Sub Family – Ursinae]
Genus – Ursus
Species – Ursus arctus, Brown Bear
Sub-Species – Ursus arctos califorinicus, California Golden Bear