Because of the limited operation of the California Central Rail Road (CCRR), there is little documentation referring to the company and its assets. Eric Kraft has been doing some research on the CCRR and has started accumulating information, photos, data and ephemera attached to the old rail road company.
CCRR was incorporated in 1857 and started rail service in October of 1861. They ordered four engines from Richard Norris and Son who would also be contracted to build the Gov. Stanford for the Central Pacific Railroad (CPRR). When the CPRR arrived at Junction, present day Roseville, the viability of the CCRR was put in jeopardy. The CCRR was foreclosed upon in 1868 with part of the line, Junction to Lincoln, being acquired by the California & Oregon Railroad Co. and the remaining portion being sold for scrap.
The engines used on the CCRR were a 4-4-0 type. This link discusses how the restored Gov. Stanford at the California Railroad Museum probably looks different from the original “As Built” condition received. Mr. Kraft speculates that the engines purchased for the CCRR looked very similar to the original Gov. Stanford. When you compare the old photo of the CCRR engine crossing the American River, there is little doubt that the CCRR engines looked liked originally.
This link to the Mountain Democrat has a photo of the rails on the trestle bridge that crossed the American River by the CCRR. The photo also seems to confirm that the rail width was the wider Sacramento Valley Railroad gauge of 60″ versus what became know as the standard gauge of 4 feet and 8.5″, established by the Railroad Act of 1863
The end of the line for the CCRR was Lincoln, CA. This receipt shows that folks traveling north would continue on at least one stage coach company called Oregon Stage Co.
Mr. Kraft continues to do research and we will be posting more information as it becomes available. If you have any information you would like to share, please contact me: [email protected]