It should be noted that this series of articles is just a quick look at Green Valley Road. Much of this area is covered in greater depth in a recently released and fantastic book, “History of a Place Called Rescue,” by William C. Teie and Francis M. Carpenter. It can be purchased online at www.deervalleypress.com.
There were two distinct and separate east-west routes through the western part of El Dorado County during the early years of the Gold Rush. One was called the White Rock Road route and the other, Green Valley Road.
White Rock Road, the predecessor of Highway 50, was one of the major routes for the California immigrants traveling west by land. Many came over the Sierra Nevada and picked up the road in the Tahoe Basin, following it to Placerville and then, possibly to Sacramento and points west, north or south.
On the other hand, nearly all of the traffic that moved west to east (Sacramento to the mines) followed the other route – Green Valley Road (also known as the Overland Trail).
Green Valley Road was one of the earliest roads in El Dorado County. The first miners, those who arrived by ship or overland from Oregon and from towns along the coast of California, blazed this route to get to Mormon Bar, New York Creek, and, ultimately, Coloma only a few months after James Marshall picked up those first few flakes of gold.
As with other busy roads, there would soon be many places or stations along the road where a hungry or tired miner or teamster could find food, supplies or a place to rest for the night. Some of these places lasted only a short time and some went on to last a century or more. Therefore, not all of them may have existed at the same time.