Images Of Rail Roaring Camp Railroads By Beniam Kifle & Nathan Goodman Soft Cove
Images Of Rail Roaring Camp Railroads By Beniam Kifle & Nathan Goodman Soft Cove
Images Of Rail Roaring Camp Railroads By Beniam Kifle & Nathan Goodman Soft Cove
Images Of Rail Roaring Camp Railroads By Beniam Kifle & Nathan Goodman Soft Cove
Images Of Rail Roaring Camp Railroads By Beniam Kifle & Nathan Goodman Soft Cove
Images Of Rail Roaring Camp Railroads By Beniam Kifle & Nathan Goodman Soft Cove

Images Of Rail Roaring Camp Railroads By Beniam Kifle & Nathan Goodman Soft Cove

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Images Of Rail Roaring Camp Railroads By Beniam Kifle & Nathan Goodman Soft Cove
 
Images Of Rail Roaring Camp Railroads By Beniam Kifle and Nathan Goodman
Softcover 127 pages  Copyright 2013
CONTENTS
Acknowledgments
Introduction
1.The Railroad Arrives
2.Beginnings
3.America's Most Backward Railroad
4.Building Bridges
5.Water and Fire
6.Santa Cruz, Big Trees & Pacific Railway
7.Into the Future
Bibliography

INTRODUCTION
Long before California was a state, a party of trappers from Tennessee and Kentucky made their way west over the Santa Fe Trail, arriving in Mexican territory in 1834. One of the members of this party was named Isaac Graham. Not being a Mexican citizen, he was prohibited from owning land. However, another member of his party, Joseph Majors, became a naturalized Mexican citizen and was then able to procure the land then known as Rancho Zayante. By 1841, Majors, Graham, and others had set up the first powered sawmill in California, along the banks of Zayante Creek. The sawmill was soon joined by a gristmill and a whiskey distillery.
This camp of British and American men in decidedly Mexican territory became an attractive spot for many travelers coming west in the 1830s and 1840s. As the population of Graham's colony swelled, the sawmill and machinery roared and the liquor flowed. It soon became known as "Drunkards Camp" or "A Wild and Roaring Camp," depending on who was talking about it. As the output of Graham's sawmill increased beyond the capacity of his camp to use the lumber, he constructed a highway from his mill through the mountains into Santa Cruz. The highway was to be used for shipping his lumber, and still exists, as today's Graham Hill Road. Until the railroad arrived in the middle of 1875, Graham's road was the only reliable route into Santa Cruz.
In 1850, California was admitted into the Union. Isaac Graham died on November 3, 1863. By 1867, arrangements were being made for his lands to be turned over to local logging interests. Wealthy San Francisco attorney Joseph Welch thwarted that plan by purchasing the land himself. Welch ended up with approximately 300 acres of old-growth redwood trees and meadows, including a grove of truly massive trees along the San Lorenzo River. What became known as the Big Trees Ranch was one of the first properties ever purchased with the aim of preservation. While the rest of the Santa Cruz Mountains were being clear-cut, Welch was hard at work setting up a tourist resort in his grove of big trees. By 1880, a narrow gauge railroad deposited travelers, eager for picnicking and escaping the heat of California's Central Valley, on the doorstep of his resort.
Today, this tradition continues thanks to the vision of Norman Clark and his family, who arrived in the area in the mid-1950s with the dream of preserving this slice of California's history. Upon seeing the Big Trees Ranch, Clark found it to be a perfect location, and he was able to secure the 180 acres still owned by Joseph Welch's descendents in a 99-year lease. In honor of the 50th anniversary of Clark's dream becoming a reality, this book is a look back over those first 50 years and what it took to build America's Most Backward Railroad.

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