Latrobe

Source

The History of El Dorado County, California by P. Sioli, page 199


Is located in the lower part, far southwest, of the county, where the character of the country in its transformation comes nearer to that of the pains of Sacramento valley. It is the youngest town acquisition of El Dorado county, and owes its origin to the Placerville and Sacramento Valley Railroad, which established a station for the benefit of the neighboring Amador county here on the crossing of the roads. The town started on completion of the railroad in 1864, and was surveyed and platted by Chief Engineer F. A. Bishop, who also suggested the name of the town, after Latrobe, the civil engineer in the construction of the first railroad in the United States. The land of the town site covering 240 acres was owned by J. H. Miller, being enclosed in the Poss claim, and he gave Bishop one-half of it for the surveying and platting; but when it became time to prove up, Bishop forfeited his part and Miller only proved up. Town lots were then advertised for sale at the instance of Bishop with Miller's consent, and some 75 or 80 lots were sold at auction, and every one of the purchasers set on his property. The first store had been opened already before the town was laid out, by J. H. Miller, in 1863. After the town was built he sold out to Wm. Kirkland; Riebsam & Adams followed next with another store, and so on until the town was in possession of six or seven stores, and the number of hotels from the first one, started by Miller, was growing in equal rapidity, up to four. The population in a short time accumulated to 700 or 800, supporting three blacksmith shops, one wagon and carriage factory, there were three doctors in town; Dr. Treuholtz, was there before the town was laid out, Dr. Barber and Dr. Taylor, together with two drug stores to look after the health of the population and attend to the sick, while a bakery and several butchershops provided for the healthy part. For quite a while the town controlled the whole trade of Amador county, and eight daily stages in connection with the railroad run, for the accommodation of the traveling people, to all different directions. But, though no mining town, this state of things came to an end, and from the population of about 800 there are at present only from 80 to 100 left, with one general store, one hotel, telegraph and express office, two blacksmith shops and one carriage & wagon shop to represent the whole business. The public school building is a two-story structure of considerable accommodation for all public assemblages; the Masons and Odd Fellows each have their own halls. Of old settlers in this vicinity and of town, we find the names of Thomas Hitchcock, now of Modoc county, was one of the earliest settlers here ; there were -- Dugan, Robert Doan, Jesse Couch, Dr. Treuholtz, now of Petaluma, Charles Red, Riebsam & Adams, merchants still keeping store in town, C. W. Edwards, carriage maker, David Larrison, blacksmith, Richard Lane, George W. Ford, J. I., W. T. and Nathaniel Porter, farmers and miners.

The members of Cosumnes Lodge, No. 63, I. O. O. F. are meeting at Latrobe on Saturday.

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