Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Folsom, Coloma, Hangtown (Placerville) & Groomed Girl

On Sunday, after attending church at Calvary Chapel Orangevale, Marcia and I went over to mom and dad's to pick them up for our first "Day Trip".  Church was very good, and we will attend this location again, that is for sure.  The Pastor was very focused with his teachings, and the people there were very friendly....of course, they have been friendly everywhere we have attended so far.  Missed getting a picture, so we will get one next time.

When I lived in the Greater Sacramento Area back when....places like Orangvale, Folsom, even Citrus Heights and Rosevale were "way out there", away from the large "civilization" of Sacramento.  Now, they are all connected with homes and businesses, with the Folsom area seeming to have the greatest amount of growth.  It was a eye opener for me...that is for sure.

There was once a time that one could drive across the Folsom Dam, now, like with many large dams, you drive over a bridge.  We got to Folsom Lake, over the bridge where you can see the dam and the huge lake, and even the famous Folsom Prison...all without taking one picture.  It is hard to remember that I am a tourist here now....gotta remember to take pictures.  But I found two pictures on the Internet which will give you an idea of what I am talking about.
The "Lake and Dam" is above....the Prison is below.  One who is in Folsom Prison, especially the old part of the prison, are certainly "stuck in Folsom Prison", that is for sure.
We headed along the western portion of the lake up to Auburn.  Auburn is the county seat of the county of Placer, and is deep in Gold Rush history, as are many of the towns along the foothills or base of the Sierra Nevada Mountains.
Above is a very large monument to the miners of the great 1849 Gold Rush.  It is estimated that the Gold Rush brought some 300,000 people to California, many by boat, many over the mountains along the wagon trails.  If one has ancestors who were in California, or on a boat which was on its way to California, by the end of 1849, then you are an official "49er".  Well, that includes me, because my father's family had people here and on the way by the end of 1849.  Also, I am an avid forty-niner fan (football), but that is another story....

Marcia loves the flowers, the trees, the vibrant colors of spring in California.  Below is a tree she saw in Auburn, near the monument of the miner, which she just had to have a picture of.
After I got some gas in Auburn, we headed to Coloma.  Coloma is where the GOLD was first discovered.  They attempted to conceal the gold find at first, but when one picks up a bit of gold which found to be 96% pure, it is hard to keep that a secret.  James Marshall was building a sawmill in what is now called Coloma.  The mill was owned by John Sutter, who was down in Sacramento.  On January 24, 1848, James Marshall was looking over the river, and noticed some "shinny stuff" down in the rocks.  He knew it had to be either sulphuret of iron (fools gold), which is bright and brittle, or gold, bright and malleable.  It turned out to be the latter, and the rest is history.  Poor James never capitalized on the gold, however.  He put all his money into one mine, which produced nothing.  He died in 1885 broke.  By 1890 a monument was put up in his honor...and history has given him his due credit for his discovery.
Here is a reconstructed version of the saw mill, above, and a picture of a reconstructed cabin that the mill workers lived in, below.
And below, some of the native homes which might have been found in the area during those times.
 After a short visit in Coloma, we headed over to Placerville, also known as Hangtown, for some lunch.  Placerville is like Auburn, deep in Gold Rush history....best known for being the place that justice was carried out....
Hangtown was changed to Placerville in 1854, and was the third largest city in California.  It became the county seat of El Dorado County.  There is lots of history, lots of old buildings, but by this time, it was time for supper.  So we turned our attention to eating, and found the Buttercup Pantry Restaurant, a nice place to catch a good meal.  After eating, we did a quick drive around downtown, and headed west back to the Sacramento area.  Again, it was an eye-opener to me as I saw many more homes and businesses along Highway 50 from Placerville to Sacramento.  Times sure have changed....and I think the day trip gave Marcia a glimpse of California History, and she again loved the scenery.

On Monday, the first thing on my agenda was to get the "little girl" to the groomers...she has rolled in so much grass, dirt, dessert, weeds, and runs through forests, that she needed a good grooming.  Here are the before pictures...

And now the after....

That's our Skruffy Dog....she loves to come back from the groomers and show off her stuff.  With Bubba still healing from his hurt leg, we decided to wait to have him groomed.  Also, he does not get into all the things that Skruffy gets into...partially because he is higher up off the ground, and partially because of his leg.

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