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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Napa in Napa County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)
 

Napa Valley Railroad

 
 
Napa Valley Railroad Marker image. Click for full size.
By Loren Wilson, February 11, 2009
1. Napa Valley Railroad Marker
Inscription. The Napa Valley Railroad ran from Soscol Landing, the most northerly terminus of the larger bay steamers, north 4.5 miles to this site in Napa City. Ground was broken on November 21, 1864, and by January 1865 the grade and track laying was completed. The first train pulled into Napa City on July 10, 1865. Invited guests gathered at Revere House for appropriate ceremony, toasts, and lavish repast. Free rides were given to all who wished to embrace the opportunity. Elected officers were: President, A. Y. Easterby, Vice President; R. B. Woodward, Secretary; A. Badlam Jr., Treasurer; Sam Brannan.
 
Erected 1989 by Sam Brannan Chapter #1004 E Clampus Vitus.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the E Clampus Vitus marker series.
 
Location. 38° 17.816′ N, 122° 17.089′ W. Marker is in Napa, California, in Napa County. Click for map. The plaque is located in the atrium of the Napa County complex, a block bounded by Coombs, Main, Third and Fifth Streets in downtown Napa. Marker is in this post office area: Napa CA 94559, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Napa Courthouse Flag Staff (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); A. Hatt Buildings 1884 & 1886
Napa Valley Railroad Marker in Atrium image. Click for full size.
By Loren Wilson, April 14, 2012
2. Napa Valley Railroad Marker in Atrium
(about 600 feet away); Hatt Building 1886 (about 600 feet away); First Presbyterian Church Building (about 600 feet away); Oberon Saloon (about 600 feet away); Silo Building 1932 (about 700 feet away); Hay Barn 1959 (about 700 feet away); Lieutenant William W. Murphy (about 700 feet away). Click for a list of all markers in Napa.
 
More about this marker. For many years the Plaque was housed in a Napa County Corporation Yard, where it was moved following changes made to the Napa County complex.
The plaque was re-located and re-dedicated in 2012 with the assistance of Napa County Supervisor Brad Wagenknecht
 
Additional comments.
1. Additional Information Regarding the Marker Dedication
Steve Hackett was Noble Grand Humbug when this plaque was dedicated. Steve was aslo the county council for Napa County. Plaque wording by Loren A. Wilson.
    — Submitted April 17, 2012, by Loren Wilson of Sebastopol, California.

NGH Bill Rash and Napa County Supervisor Brad Wagenknecht at 2012 re-dedication image. Click for full size.
By Loren Wilson, April 14, 2012
3. NGH Bill Rash and Napa County Supervisor Brad Wagenknecht at 2012 re-dedication
2. Napa Valley Railroad

Along with river transportation there is no enterprise so closely connected with the development and advancement of Napa County as that of the railroad which once served its citizens almost exclusively. This railroad line was to be built from Soscol, the most northerly terminus of the larger bay steamers, north 4.5 miles to Napa City. It would be named, naturally enough, the Napa Valley Railroad. It was estimated that the initial cost would be $100.000 including equipment and rails for the new line By January 10, 1865, the road was completed as to grading and track-laying from Soscol to Napa City. The track entered Napa City by way of Main Street, and was laid along that street to Third. The rolling-stock did not arrive until about July 1, 1865, and on the 10th of that month the first train passed over the track.
The initial success of this stretch of steam railroad of made officials of the line eager to extend northward to Calistoga, and stock was subscribed to promote the venture. Sam Brannan and the Calistoga Hot Springs interests were most enthusiastic. But the citizenry of the county and particularly the Napa townspeople showed no such positive response and defeated the railroad backers at a bond issue election. The steam railroad was not a financial success, however, as traffic was less than expected and payments of interest on construction
Napa Valley Railroad Marker in storage image. Click for full size.
By Loren Wilson, February 11, 2009
4. Napa Valley Railroad Marker in storage
notes could not be met. The railroad was sold, and as a branch of the California Pacific, the Napa Valley line prospered and proved a boon to Napa Valley, bringing more people and greater land values to the area. Upon completion, the entire length of the road was 41 miles. Note To Editor only visible by Contributor and editor    
    — Submitted April 17, 2012, by Loren Wilson of Sebastopol, California.

 
Categories. Railroads & Streetcars
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Loren Wilson of Sebastopol, California. This page has been viewed 416 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on , by Loren Wilson of Sebastopol, California. • Syd Whittle was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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