Inaugural Run of Loco Daisy
It’s 1885, the No. 2 locomotive “Daisy” has just completed her trial run on the Caspar & Hare Creek Railroad. The locomotive was tasked with transporting logs to the sawmill in Caspar. The new locomotive was built by Baldwin in Philadelphia; parts were boxed and shipped around Cape Horn; they arrived from San Francisco on the schooner “Abbie.”
She’s still “alive” and you can find her in the Deli restaurent in Fort Bragg, Ca.
How long have “our” coastal redwoods existed? Well, a search for diamonds in Canada’s far north turned up a rare fossil — a chunk of a redwood sealed in volcanic rock more than 50 million years ago. A search for diamonds in Canada’s far north turned up a rare fossil — a chunk of a redwood sealed in volcanic rock more than 50 million years ago. A study of the well-preserved specimen, which also contains a sliver of amber, shows that the now-icy region where it was found had a swampier past. The wood was found a few years ago in a kimberlite pipe, named the Panda pipe, over 1,000 feet below Earth’s surface at the Ekati diamond mine, just south of the Arctic Circle in Canada’s Northwest Territories, the researchers say.
50 million year old piece of Redwood
As Peanuts would say – “Good grief”.
Russian Gulch State Park today is a popular place for events, weddings, camping and such. In 1867 L.E. Ballister & Co. had a mill there. From 1878 to 1888 Prince Grey had a shingle mill there which which was taken over by Eugene Brown in 1888. From 1918 to some time in the 1920’s Gray and Johnson Lumber & Shingle Mill operated at Russian Gulch. The only way to get the shingles to market was by sea. Russian Gulch, like all doghole ports, was a very dangerous place in bad weather. I don’t know which schooner is in the pic below – the note with picture merely says the wreck was at Russian Gulch.
Wreck at Russian Gulch just North of Mendocino
If you check out our website section on ships under “S” you’ll find info on the Sea Foam. Alas, the info is effusive but not too heavy on fact. Hopefully this blog rectifies the lack of facts.
Built by John Lindstrom in Aberdeen, Washington in 1904. She displaced 339 tons. She had a 250,000 board feet capacity and carried both lumber and passengers. Her dimensions were 127 x 32 x 10 feet with a 500 h.p. compound engine. The Sea Foam was operated by J.H. Fritch of San Francisco. The coast residents relied on the Sea Foam. She carried everything the coast residents needed, equipment for the mills such as saws, clothing, furniture and even pianos. Here’s a copy of her schedule:
Sea Foam schedule
The Sea Foam crashed on the south reef of the Point Arena harbour in February 1931. She was en route from Eureka to San Francisco, stopping at Point Arena to pick up freight. As the captain was entering harbour he decided the sea was too rough. When he was bringing her around the Sea Foam was caught by a heavy tow and was carried around to the reef with disasterous results. The Coast Guard launched a boat with a crew of seven and despite the rough seas and 45 mph winds was able to rescue all 19 men who were aboard.
Here are pictures of the wreck:
Wreck of the Sea Foam
Sea Foam on the murderous rocks
What is a flume? A log flume is a flume specifically constructed to transport lumber and logs down mountainous terrain using flowing water.
Where is Rollerville? Rollerville (sometimes called Flumeville) was just north of Point Arena. How did it get its name …….
The Garcia Mill was located up the Garcia River – it comes out to the sea at Gualala. A railroad wasn’t feasible to haul the cut lumber to the coast because of the terrain. Getting the lumber to close to the coast (six miles?) a flume was constructed. Here you can see the cut lumber being placed in the flume.
Loading lumber into the Rollerville Flume
The flume stopped in front of a 10o foot high hill. And, how did the lumber get transported from the bottom to the top? A gigantic 24 foot high water wheel powered a hoist.
24 foot high water wheel
Look very carefully at the photo above. In the middle of the wheel a man is standing.
What happened to the lumber when it got to the top of the hill? Horse and car was used to haul the lumber to the chute that took the lumber from the top of the cliff down to the waiting schooners.
Chute used by Garcia Mill
First – What is a “Crummy”. It was an early term for a logger’s bed roll and possessions.Latterly it is the word used for the vehicle that hauls the loggers to the work site in the woods. From what one can gather it was usually a vehicle in deplorable condition and barely functional. Crummies weren’t vehicles that were the subject of the discerning photographer. This photo shows the crummy belonging (I think) to the L.E. White lumber Company of Elk/Greenwwod. It was on its way to Camp 11 one ridge east of Highway 1 and west of Cold Springs.
Crummy on the way to the woods
The propulsion is an automobile converted to rail pulling a flat car. No shelter for anyone, What a way to go to work!!!!!
This map comes from a book, “The Mendonoma Coast.”
Map of Pomo Villages along the Southern Mendocino Coast and Northern Sonoma Coast
As you can see there were lots of villages. Many of the villages were along the coast – the Pomo preferred the open spaces to the shadowy redwoods.
And today? Narry a one. Why? Well, I can assure you that they didn’t all die of old age.
Just a couple.
Rockport Suspension Bridge and Chute
The rock was blasted flat. Here’s a blown up version of the left page:
And here’s the Shay that took the lumber out to the rock: