Historic Sites and Points of Interest in Placer County

Schuyler Colfax and the Gillen Hotel The Gillen Hotel opened in 1903 and remained in business until the early 1970s.
  Schuyler Colfax
  Schuyler Colfax 16 December 2013
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Schuyler Colfax
East Grass Valley Street at Railroad Avenue

Schuyler Colfax

Schuyler Colfax, Speaker of the House of Representatives, was asked by President Abraham Lincoln on April 14 to take a message to the miners of the west, that their prosperity is the prosperity of the Nation. These may have been Lincoln's last words on public subjects, as he was shot later that evening at Ford Theatre, Washington, D.C.

In May 1865 Colfax traveled 2000 miles by stagecoach, reaching San Francisco on July 1, 1865. The slow journey emphasized the need for a railroad to the Pacific. Colfax traveled by special train on the new Central Pacific Railroad, 56 miles from Sacramento to Colfax, and along the working sections on horseback and by coach. Track was graded and laid and trains were running to the town of Colfax, named for the Speaker. The Transcontinental Railroad would unite the Atlantic Regions and the Pacific Regions of our Nation.

Colfax went on to be Vice-President under Ulysses S. Grant, 1869-1873.

Dedicated Sept. 13, 2003
ECV Lord Sholto Douglas Chapter 3 and Colfax Area Historical Society

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