History of Roseville, CA

Roseville is the largest city in Placer County, California. It is considered to be the so-called capital city of the county, even though it is not the biggest city in the state. It is a cozy city with unique Southern architecture located alongside 80 routes.

Though citizens know many facts about Roseville and do not need any guide about the place to visit, it is essential to know the true history of the city. So, here you will find a brief history of Roseville!

1. The Founding Father

Everyone who studies and develops the history of Roseville pays tribute to Leonard "Duke" Davis. He was one of the founders of the Roseville Historical Society, also taught history in high and middle schools and college, and wrote a book about Roseville’s history (“The Story of Roseville, California: Milestones and Memories 1850-2000”) which was published on the day of the city’s centennial.

It is possible to say that Davis was the person who wrote Roseville’s history. Surely, he did it not only by himself, but his contribution was the biggest and most significant. So, the following information is placed here due to his activity and knowledge.

2.The Earliest Times

The first known information about Roseville comes from the late 18th century, when the local lands were hometowns for the Maidu Indians. In 1849, when the Gold Rush started, prospectors came here to observe the land and actually found many valuable resources here, so the place was never the same.

Later, in the 1960s, the mass construction of railroads through the US was launched. So, the Central Pacific Railroad, which permeates the whole of Sacramento, created a crossing with a smaller railroad between Lincoln and Folsom, which is now the center of Roseville. The crossing was called Junction.

In the following decades, Junction started growing to proceed with trading for the nearest farmers. The city got the name Roseville thanks to the roses that were growing in the suburbs during seasonal times. Another version claims that the city was named after a woman called Rose, who was considered to be the most beautiful and kind person in Junction.

3. The City Growth

At the beginning of the 20th century, the city started growing rapidly, both including the lands and population. Due to the big railroad crossing the city, it was essential to place strategically significant services there. Thus, the Roseville Railroad Yard hired more than 1,000 people to construct trains, repair engines, and handle cargo.

Except for making the city more significant and attractive in the nation’s transfer and production purposes, the appearance of many working places attracted more population here. The city continued developing and giving its citizens a homeland even during the Great Depression since one-third of the population was working at the railroad and its spreading.

During the Second World War, the railroad crossing that lies in the heart of Roseville became extremely used by military and civic services. Because of it, the city became a wholesome recreation and production tie. That is why it was not harmed during the war as badly as many other cities, in contrast, it became more powerful and developed.

4. Roseville After War

Thanks to the usefulness of the railroads that cross the city, it was decided to provide Roseville with an improved system of electricity and new buildings. In this order, a new hospital and many buildings contributed to new businesses.

The beginning of the 1950s was the time when the automobile industry surprisingly popped up and changed the market game rapidly. As for Roseville, it was a whole new era. Many new buildings flooded the city center and gave place to a new level of trading. At these times, Chrysler-Plymouth sales and service and Buick agency buildings appeared on Vernon and on Judah Streets respectively.

Railroads decreased in popularity and airlines, interstates, and truckers took the place. Washington Underpass, Folsom Dam, and Interstate 80 were the constructions that changed the obliqueness of the state and especially Roseville and its life.

In 1955, Roseville's domestic water supply system was completed, and already in 1964, Roseville developed as much as even bigger cities, so that it was called an ideal of a small American town. It is witnessed by an article in Look Magazine which called Roseville an “All America City”. Many companies were attracted by this fact and decided to place their offices, service centers, and productions there. It was the peak development of Roseville which decisively finished the city’s association with railroad junction.

5. Modern History

Nowadays Roseville is a beautiful city near Folsom Lake and with many auto and train roads. Thanks to such location, it is a popular destination for tourists crossing the state or even traveling through the whole US. For their and citizens’ entertainment, many fancy cafés, malls, and parks.

To retrieve memories about significant events, modern Rosevillians can visit many places that are dedicated to past events. For example, these are:

  • Railroad Viewing Platform between Lincoln and Pacific Streets. Being the biggest repair service for engines, the platform will demonstrate to you a true historical layer from which Roseville started expanding.
  • Benito Juarez Statue in Royer Park. Juarez is one of the Mexican Presidents who agitated for the abolition of slavery and supported native Mexicans as much as possible. The monument was presented to Roseville by the Heredia family in the 1960s to pay tribute to the local Mexican population and friendly relationships with the city government.
  • Columbus Statue near the Post Office on Vernon Street. Another statue of a great person is located in the city center. It was created by an Italian artist Bruno Cabrillo and given to the city in 1976 for a local celebration.
  • Civic Center Time Capsule on Vernon Street. Continuing wandering around Vernon Street will bring you to the place where the time capsule was placed under the ground in 2009 during the Centennial Celebration.
  • Washington Boulevard Underpass at the beginning of Vernon Street. Your historical walking tour will be impressively better if you include this place in it. This underpass was made in the 1950s to connect the historical part of the city with Vernon street for pedestrians.

All in all, Roseville is a city with a nourished history that can be rarely met in any other American city. If you are a citizen, there is no doubt you must visit these places to know your city from the inside!