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Nostalgia & History > Re: Dunsmuir, CA ?

Date: 04/22/21 13:09
Re: Dunsmuir, CA ?
Author: johnsweetser

More comments to add to the original thread from two days ago at: https://www.trainorders.com/discussion/read.php?11,5238709

The earliest news report I've found that mentioned the station name of Dunsmuir was in the August 2, 1886 Bulletin of San Francisco.  That date was three weeks before the rail line was opened to traffic to the first Dunsmuir on August 23, 1886 (unfortunately, I didn't note the main subject of the report when I came across it some time ago). 

An interesting description of Dunsmuir when it was a railroad construction camp was in the Sacramento Daily Record-Union of November 6, 1886 (7:1).  The writer started from Redding (apparently around the beginning of the month) and traveled by train to Dunsmuir, where he transferred to a stage coach to continue north.

"The town of Dunsmuir is reached about 9 o'clock [9 P.M.].  Imagine a town composed entirely of huge lanterns, for the tents of every shape and size which loom up on all sides seem like nothing else.  It is a scene from the "Arabian Nights," and it would hardly surprise one if he were to be lifted into the air at any moment and carried away.  However, the painted signs, "restaurant," "saloon" and "barber-shop," in letters not the least Arabic, tell with the most prosaic certainty that the scene is real.  Such is the place of Dunsmuir, and it remains in my memory like a half-forgotten dream; the confusion of cars, the hissing of steam from the engine, singing and shouting men within and without the tents, pistol shots and the crying of a baby.

"To add to all the hubbub, the barber has lost a pet mountain-wolf, and rushes about searching for it and asking everyone he meets if they have seen it, and many join the hunt."

It is not clear if the tent town described was at the first or the second location of Dunsmuir (I lean toward the first).  Determining precisely when the Dunsmuir station name was moved would require much additonal research. 


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