The city of Auburn was founded in 1849, and by 1850 the town had grown to 1,500 people - mainly due to the California Gold Rush. This beautiful map provides a look back to the early beginnings of the city, and includes insets of the towns early structures. Complete reference list below.
The following booster statement was included on the map:
Auburn, Placer County, Cal.
The county seat of Placer County, Cal., is situated in the foot-hill portion at an elevation of 1,360 feet, and is on the main overland route, the C.P.R.R., 36 miles from Sacramento, the Capital, and 126 miles from San Francisco. Auburn was settled in 1849, and has long been noted for its beauties of scenery and as a health resort. The doctors throughout the State recommend its climate for those troubled with asthma and pulmonary troubles. Its elevation and fresh resinous air make it peculiarly grateful to such. School facilities consist of public schools and the Sierra Normal College.
Churches are Congregational, Catholic, Methodist, and a Protestant Episcopal Mission. There are large hotels which entertain in first-class manner the local traveling and health-seeking public. Stages run daily to Placerville and Georgetown in El Dorado County, and Forest Hill and other towns in Placer County. It is a large freight shipping station to the neighboring mountain towns. The Wild rushing American River, in its canon 1,000 feet deep, is piped spring water to the lower part of town, but there will be finished in January, 1888, a most perfect system of water works for the town and surrounding hills. 3,800 feet of 13 inch pipe will carry Bear River ditch water to a hill having two reservoirs of 2,000,000 gallons capacity each, 345 feet above the Post Office ; thence a 13 inch pipe 3,600 feet to depot, with fall of 140 feet, thence in a 6 inch pipe 5,200 feet to lowest part of town, with 220 feet fall, or a total of 360 feet from reservoirs. This assures abundance of water for house, irrigation, fire, sewer and manufacturing purposes. All kinds of fruits and berries flourish here, deciduous as well as citrus. A few banana and rubber trees are growing in yards. It is the natural home of the orange, olive and vine. The Auburn Orange Growers' Association has 16 acres of growing orange trees, also a few lemons, in their grove near Auburn, which is the second larges in Northern California. An olive oil mill will be erected this season. The College Tract is a choice, centrallly located piece of rolling ground, subdivided into building lots. Streets and alleys are being graded, and water pipes will soon be laid to each lot. The population of Auburn is 2,000 and growing fast. In 1887 there were established new business houses as follows: A Second Bank, 2 Dry Goods Stores, 1 Grocery Store, 1 Drug Store, 1 Variety and News Depot, besides numerous residences; and 6 new Real Estate Agents have begun business in addition to the one office of 1886. A modern poet could truthfully sing -
"Sweet Auburn ! loveliest village of the plain,
Where health and plenty cheer the laboring swain,
Where smiling spring its earliest visit paid,
And parting summer's lingering blooms delayed."
Placer County, California.
Placer County in area is larger than the State of Rhode Island. It extends from near the Sacramento River on the west in a north-east direction to the State of Nevada and Lake Tahoe, about 160 miles. The width varies from 10 to 30 miles. The adjoining counties in the north are Yuba and Nevada ; on the south El Dorado and Sacramento ; on the west Sutter. In altitude above the ocean it reaches from 100 feet in the western and agricultural portion to the Sierra Nevada mountains, many of whose peaks are 10, 000 feet high. The elevations of the towns on the railroad are indicated on the map. For convenience it may be described in three sections, mountain, foot-hill and valley. In the mountains limbering and mining are the chief industries. Fruits of all kinds flourish in the middle or foothill portion, the western portion being in the famed Sacramento Valley. Health resorts are numerous. Miles of R.R., 117. Transportation facilities being from 12 to 36 hours nearer Chicago market than any other County in the State. The chief industries are lumbering, quarts and drift mining, fruit raising, granite cutting, pottery and terra cotta works, stock raising and general farming.
In 1886 Placer County received first prize for County exhibit at State Fair, and first prize at Sacramento Citrus Fair. The county ranks third in the State for the number of growing orange trees. Placer County has has no bonded. Taxes are low. Annual rainfall at elevation of Auburn is 30 inches, increasing further up the mountains. Irrigation system, with 500 miles of main and lateral ditches, water supply abundant. Value of raw land, from $10 to $100 per acre, according to location.
Its soil embraces timber, mining, orange, olive, grape, ordinary fruit and valley lands, and is granite and red slate in character. From Colfax to south-western portion may be considered in the thermal belt, most of which is suitable fro raising oranges, olives, and the raisin grape. Higher in the mountains the pear and apple reach perfection.
The lowest temperature in Riverside, Southern Cal., last year was 21 above zero. The lowest for Auburn and vicinity was 26. The temperature for the month of January, 1887, at Colfax, Placer Co. with an elevation of 2,422 feet averaged 36 degrees ; Riverside, five degrees of latitude further south -- over 360 miles -- averaged fro the same month 35.9 degrees. November 19th, 1887, a banana plant was in full bloom near Newcastle. Some of the best drift and quartz mines in the State are worked on the Forest Hill divide. For nearness to markets, both local and eastern, varied industries, temperate climate and beautiful scenery, cheap and productive soil with abundance of water, the future possibilities of Placer County are not surpassed in the whole State.
Features numbered references to the following locations:
2. Birdsall and Hamilton's Villa Sites.
3. Auburn House.
4. Borland Hotel.
5. C.P.R.R. Depot.
6. Arlington Hotel.
7. Sierra Nevada Mts.
8. Putnam House.
9. Congregational Ch.
10. Catholic Church.
11. Public School.
12. Methodist Church.
13. Sierra Normal Coll.
14. County Hospital.
15. Court House & Jail.
16. Orleans Hotel.
17. American Hotel.
18. Bear River Ditch.
19. Agard's Olive Orch'd.