Today the Model A tourists went down to the Station.
That last one reminds me of “Petticoat Junction.”
The group enjoyed a tour of Railtown 1897 (a state historic park in Jamestown, CA), which consists of the original depot, headquarters, and roundhouse of the Sierra Railway, built in 1897 to carry passengers, ore from mines, and logs by steam railroads.
Fun in the roundhouse:
We think the item in the photo below was called a handcar. It was custom made for one of the owners to keep an eye on his holdings along the tracks. It’s a three wheeled contraption that one person could maneuver without assistance.
Then there were motorized vehicles, which seem to be called “speeders”. They were maintenance vehicles to move quickly to and from work sites. Although these vehicles were slow compared to a train, they were faster than a human-powered vehicle such as a handcar. One of these was built out of spare parts, probably from a junkyard.
Some of the group got to ride the red speeder above. The whole group rode on the “Old No. 3” Steam Train below. Note: this old steam locomotive has been in over 300 movies. The caboose was in “Back to the Future lll”.
Views from the ride:
The last two photos above show a view of hydraulic mining scars on the landscape and a view of Woods Creek where gold nuggets were discovered adding this area to the California Gold Rush frenzy.
In the afternoon, most folks visited historical downtown Jamestown.
Jamestown fell on hard times after the Gold Rush, but the steam railroad we visited was important to the town’s resurgence, largely because so many underground quartz mines were nearby. In many ways, downtown Jamestown today looks as it did a hundred years ago.
Check out the quilting store. I think the ladies found their own type of gold!
Finally, here are some late-arriving photos, probably from Columbia State Park on the 15th. I’m sure there’s a story here:
In other reports, some have said there’s a resemblance between Jay and Mark Twain. Maybe…but Jay had better not grow the beard! And the last photo is of Mark Twain’s cabin. (It’s a replica.)
Photo credits: Bennett, Krill, Matty, McBride and Murdoch.