Folsom in Sacramento County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)
The Sacramento, Placer and Nevada Railroad Right of Way
It was never long enough to fulfill Judah’s dream of a Continental Pacific Railway and its gauge was three and one half inches too wide.
[ Information Posted on the Kiosk ]:
The story ends where you are standing.
Folsom was the site of the first attempt at the transcontinental railroad. Theodore Judah, a railroad engineer from Connecticut, brought his vision and intense passion to Sacramento to build the nation’s first transcontinental railroad.
He was hired as the Chief Engineer for the Sacramento Valley Railroad, the first railroad west of the Mississippi, which ran from Sacramento to Folsom (it closely follows the current light-rail route.) He surveyed the route across the difficult Sierra Nevada for the nation’s transcontinental railroad. Struggling
It is unclear if the track was abandoned because the route was not desirable or if the cost of placing the rails closer was prohibitive.
Dejected, Theodore Judah left California to return to the East Coast to find funding for his dream. He traveled by ship with a land crossing in Panama where he contracted Yellow Fever and died, his dream to be fulfilled by others.
To the left of you are vintage tracks on the right of way of the Sacramento, Placer and Nevada Railroad, the product of Theodore Judah’s dream.
For more information, please visit the
Erected 1975 by New Helvetia Chapter No.5, E Clampus Vitus.
Marker series. This marker is included in the E Clampus Vitus marker series.
Location. 38° 42.362′ N, 121° 10.331′ W. Marker is in Folsom, California, in Sacramento County. Marker is on Lakeside Way south of Folsom Dam Road, on the left when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is located just south of the entrance to the Lakeside Mobil Home Park. Marker is at or near this postal address: 210 Lakeside Way, Folsom CA 95630, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Pioneer Express Trail (approx. 1.3 miles away); Folsom Institute (approx. 1.6 miles away); Folsom Veterans Memorial (approx. 1.8 miles away); Original Folsom Hydroelectric Plant (approx. 1.8 miles away); Ashland Station (approx. 2 miles away); J. Clifton Toney (approx. 2.1 miles away); Turning the Trains (approx. 2.1 miles away); Folsom History Museum (approx. 2.1 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Folsom.
Also see . . .
1. Theodore Judah. The first railroad to be built on the Pacific Coast was completed in February 1856 and the town of Folsom (Submitted on October 21, 2010.)
2. The Sacramento, Placer and Nevada Railroad. The five foot guage Sacramento, Placer & Nevada RR was proposed to run from Folsom through Auburn on to Nevada City and hence over the Sierras. (Submitted on October 21, 2010.)
3. Theodore Judah. Information from the American Experience episode shown on PBS Television. (Submitted on October 25, 2010.)
Categories. • Railroads & Streetcars •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on October 21, 2010, by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California. This page has been viewed 1,062 times since then and 39 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on October 21, 2010, by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California. 7. submitted on October 25, 2010, by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California.