Photographer's Note

Misty morning in Folsom, California…

Two principal factors account for the existence of Folsom: the Gold Rush of 1849 and the advent of the railroad several years later.

Gold was first discovered here, along the south bank of the American River, by a group of African-American miners, and the area for a time was known as Negro Bar.

Eventually the discovery would lead to massive gold mining operations, mostly carried out by the Natomas Company. Evidence of this dredging can be found in the tailings still visible throughout parts of Folsom.

With the discovery of gold came the need for rail service. Joseph Folsom, who owned the land the city was eventually built on, and for whom it is named, was part of the early railroad effort. Eventually, Theodore Judah was hired as the Chief Engineer for the Sacramento Valley Railroad, the first passenger train service west of the Rockies.

It began operation in 1856, traveling from the city of Sacramento to Folsom, which immediately boomed. The Railroad Block was located near what would become Sutter Street, and most of the early businesses and homes were built nearby.

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Additional Photos by Joseph Farace (jmfarace) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 80 W: 45 N: 78] (342)
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