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Introduction to Rocklin History Series



Recent archeological evidence indicates earliest human habitation of the Rocklin area at about 7,000 years ago. About 3000 year ago, perhaps as late as 1500 years ago, the Nisenan, sometimes called Southern Maidu, occupied the area. Although Euro-Americans severely disrupted their culture in the 19th century, descendents of these people still reside in South Placer County.

Although Euro-Americans were probably fishing and harvesting game in the Rocklin area in the late 18th and  early 19th centuries, major Euro-American settlement started in the early 1850's as fortune hunters sluiced for gold in Secret Ravine, that area of oaks and dredger tailings that we see today southeast of interstate 80 between Roseville and Loomis.

The area's industrial development started in the mid to late 1850's as the Argonauts abandoned their sluice boxes to quarry granite for public buildings in Sacramento and San Francisco. Boom times for Rocklin started in the mid-1860's as Rocklin quarries supplied stone for construction of the transcontinental railroad between 1864 and 1869 and the railroad located a roundhouse in Rocklin in 1866 to service the extra engines needed for the trans-sierra run.

Rocklin's granite industry survived lean times in the 1870s and early 1880s but began to flourish in the late 1880's and 1890's as the quarries employed pneumatic technology and Finnish Immigrants came to control quarry ownership and dominate Rocklin's social life. Labor strife and competition from cement-based concrete permanently decimated the industry in the early 20th century although one quarry continued to operate until 2004.

Rocklin's round house operations moved to Roseville in 1908 displacing 300 workers. This event coupled with a declining granite industry attenuated Rocklin's growth until high tech industries began to locate here and Highway 80 brought Rocklin within easy commute distance of Sacramento in the early 1960's.

Most of today's Rocklin occupies the southern 12,000 acres of the former Spring Valley Ranch. George Whitney founded this ranch in 1855 and transferred ownership to his son Joel Parker Whitney, called Parker then, in 1873. Buoyed by easy access to rail shipping, and employing cheap Chinese labor formerly employed in railroad construction, Parker built the ranch to 27,000 acres by the time of his death in 1913.
The articles in this series detail interesting aspects of Rocklin's development. The information is from a variety of sources, most of which are mentioned within the text.

Please contact me at garyday@starstream.net if you have questions.  Gary Day





Placer County News Headlines

Craft Beer to Explore in Napa ValleyNapa Valley, CA,- The Napa Valley is renowned for its mastery of the grape, but it is also gaining appeal for its craft breweries and taprooms that offer IPAs, ambers, wheats, pilsners, porters and more

Sacramento County Fair May 24- 28Sacramento, Calif., - Excitement, anticipation, and exhilaration await attendees of the 82nd annual Sacramento County Fair!

Stroke Awareness: Knowing the signs can help save livesEvery 40 seconds someone in the U.S. has a stroke, according to the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention

Sacramento Museums to Hold Rally at State CapitolSACRAMENTO, Calif. - In 2018, Sacramento Area Museums is celebrating 20 years as a collaborative organization and plans to mark the important milestone with a rally

Capital Classic Hockey Tournament in RosevilleRoseville, CA - Placer Valley Tourism is thrilled to be teaming up with Capital Thunder Youth Hockey to bring the inaugural Capital Classic Hockey Tournament

Placer County HHS Programs National Achievement AwardsAuburn, CA,- Nine Placer County programs have been recognized with an Achievement Award from the National Association of Counties this year

Vibes & Vines Concert Featuring Michael Franti & Friends to Benefit Do It For The LoveBottleRock Napa Valley presents Vines & Vibes, the fourth annual Do It For The Love Benefit Dinner and Concert on Thursday, May 24, 2018, on the rooftop of the Archer Hotel

Lake Tahoe's Ridge Resorts' Kelly Smith named Associate Of The Year(STATELINE, Nev.) - Kelly Smith, lead loan servicing specialist and the newly awarded employee of the year at The Ridge Resorts, is packing her bags

Napa Valley Health and Wellness Choices AboundNapa Valley, CA-- The Napa Valley offers many health and wellness options for visitors, and the valley's resorts and spas are creating unique and memorable guest experiences

Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats Tour DatesLast night, Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats performed their lead single "You Worry Me" on "The Late Show with Stephen Colbert

Eldorado Resorts debuts THE ROW in RenoRENO, Nev. -Eldorado Resorts, Inc. presents a one of a kind, unified and distinguished resort experience with the addition of THE ROW-a newly branded destination in the heart of Reno

WJU Warriors Fall in Tight Battle with PioneersLINCOLN, Calif. - Jessup baseball took the field for their second game of the NAIA Opening Round at McBean Park facing No. 3 Antelope Valley, both teams undefeated


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