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

Balsar House / I.O.O.F Hall

 
 
N.D.G.W. Plaque - Dedicated April 13, 1935 image. Click for full size.
By Syd Whittle, April 7, 2012
1. N.D.G.W. Plaque - Dedicated April 13, 1935
Marker No. 1
Inscription.
[Three small markers are mounted on the front of the building:]
Marker 1:
Balsar House
A hotel built in 1850 by
Madam Balsar
Remodeled for an opera house in 1870. Restored by the Independent Order Odd Fellows and used as a meeting place by fraternal orders.

Marker 2:
Balsar House
Erected 1859 by a butcher Joseph Olmstead
Erected at a cost of $15,000
In 1889 it was bought by I.O.O.F.

Marker 3:
I.O.O.F Hall
Formerly the
Balsar House 1859
Historic Site
El Dorado County
No. 17

 
Erected by El Dorado Chapter 186, N.D.G.W., and Growlersburg Chapter 86, E Clampus Vitus. (Marker Number 17.)
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the E Clampus Vitus, and the Native Sons/Daughters of the Golden West marker series.
 
Location. 38° 54.324′ N, 120° 50.386′ W. Marker is in Georgetown, California, in El Dorado County. Marker is on Lower Main Street (aka Wentworth Springs Road), on the right when traveling north. Click for map. The building sits on the northeast corner of Lower Main Street and Georgetown Road (California
E Clampus Vitus Plaque - Dedicated 1979 image. Click for full size.
By Syd Whittle, April 23, 2012
2. E Clampus Vitus Plaque - Dedicated 1979
Marker No. 2
Highway 193). Marker is at or near this postal address: 6249 Wentworth Springs Road, Georgetown CA 95634, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Shannon Knox House (within shouting distance of this marker); Civil War Armory (within shouting distance of this marker); Georgetown Hotel (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Wells Fargo Building (about 300 feet away); Georgetown Volunteer Firemen (about 500 feet away); Chief Jack Anderson (about 500 feet away); Georgetown (about 500 feet away); Georgetown Firehouse (about 500 feet away). Click for a list of all markers in Georgetown.
 
Regarding Balsar House / I.O.O.F Hall. Eliza Balsar bought a burnt out building and lot following the fire of 1858 and constructed what was to become one of the most remodeled buildings in Georgetown. Her hotel, completed in 1859, had guest rooms and restaurant on the ground floor, guest rooms on the second floor and a third story dance hall. The business was not successful and the building was sold twice and remodeled in 1862 when a book store and vendor room were added.
Joseph Whiteside bought it in 1878, removed the top two floors and converted the rest to an opera house. William Lane and Harmon Sornberger bought that failing
I.O.O.F Building image. Click for full size.
By Syd Whittle, April 23, 2012
3. I.O.O.F Building
Marker No. 3
business for a general store, Wells Fargo stop and Post Office.
The I.O.O.F. bought the hall for a meeting house in 1878. They added a second story. The first floor was used as a public meeting room, church and funeral parlor.
A tower at the roof peak was used to house a bell which summoned mourners, worshipers and the fire department, until confusion over who was actually being summoned decreed the bell to be moved to the firehouse.
Source: Georgetown Walking Tour Brochure
 
Categories. Fraternal or Sororal OrganizationsNotable BuildingsSettlements & Settlers
 
Balsar House / I.O.O.F Hall image. Click for full size.
By Syd Whittle, April 23, 2012
4. Balsar House / I.O.O.F Hall
The markers are mounted on the building to the left of the entrance door. In this view they are hidden by the bush.
Balsar House / I.O.O.F Hall image. Click for full size.
By Syd Whittle, April 23, 2012
5. Balsar House / I.O.O.F Hall
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California. This page has been viewed 576 times since then and 4 times this year. Last updated on , by Keith S Smith of West Chester, Pennsylvania. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on , by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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