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1900-1910


Fruit shipping became an important factor in the economy of Roseville at the beginning of the twentieth century. Figures compiled by the Roseville Board of Trade for 1901 revealed that during the year alone, more than 781,000 pounds of fresh deciduous fruits had been shipped from Roseville, along with 3,000 boxes of oranges, 22,380 pounds of picked olives and 8,000 pounds of olive oil. Hand in hand with the increased activity of shipping fruit was a great upsurge in viticulture with local crops estimated at $570,000. Carefully compiled statistics show that a total of 1,195,436 boxes of grapes were shipped from the Roseville depot in 1901.

Plans for the establishment of a winery in Roseville were announced in 1905. By October of the next year, over $75,000 had been expended in buildings and equipment for the Placer County Winery. William Haman, earlier employed at Leland Stanford’s vast wine producing estate at Vina, was hired as superintendent, and it was not long before the winery made its first run and soon rated second in importance, only behind the railroad. Fire destroyed the winery in 1908, but it was rebuilt that same year.A second fire occurred in 1909, destroying all but the brick portion of the plant. Rebuilt once more, the winery operated successfully until the advent of prohibition. Later M.J. Royer operated the Roseville Ice and Beverage Company in the old brick building formerly housing the winery.


Haman winery – City collection


Haman – City collection

With the decline of the Winery, Haman became manager of the Southern Pacific stock corrals in Roseville and invested in several parcels of property in and around town. Active in politics, Haman was elected to Roseville’s first City Council in 1909 and did not retire from politics until 1931. The Haman residence – a two-story home located at the corner of Oak and Taylor Streets – was later used for the Roseville Arts Center.

By 1905, Roseville had changed from a mere railroad junction to a growing town which held high hopes for the future. But, the ambitious community was still largely a community of homes – small frame houses, spaced rather unevenly along narrow streets which transformed into dusty trails in summer and impassible quagmires of mud in winter. This is how Roseville appeared on the eve of the announcement that the Southern Pacific Company was contemplating moving its extensive railroad facilities from Rocklin. Roseville does owe its birth and early development to its position as shipping and trading center for a rich farming and grazing section of southwestern Placer County. But not until the railroad switching yards moved to Roseville in 1906 did the town really grow, marking the beginning of a new era, an era which would almost overnight change Roseville from a little shipping station to the most important freight handling terminal on the Pacific Coast – the “St. Louis of the West”.

Throughout 1905 rumors persisted in Rocklin that the Southern Pacific intended to enlarge their freight yards. Railroad plans called for a yard 7,000 feet long and 800 feet wide. The Rocklin trustees hurriedly called a special election to levy a special tax for the purpose of raising the necessary money to buy the land needed by the railroad. Their plans were to no avail, for in December it was announced that the freight yards were to be moved and that Rocklin, because of insufficient room to permit enlarging the terminal to handle increasing business, was to be eliminated from any further consideration. Several places were mentioned for the site of the new railroad yards including Ben Ali, Loomis, and a place between Loomis and Rocklin. Roseville was finally selected in the early part of 1906, partly because of the more favorable grade conditions, and partly because of its position at the junction of the north-bound and east-bound lines of the Southern Pacific Railroad.

The formal announcement that Roseville had been selected for the site of the Southern Pacific yards brought a startling transformation for the little village. Instantly the town began to boom. The railroad company bought large blocks of land, with A.B. McRae, local realtor, handling most of the transactions. The unloading of rails, ties, lumber, construction machinery and tools commenced immediately.

Atlantic Street had to be moved back a hundred feet to accommodate miles of new track. Clouds of yellow choking dust hovered continually over the town as teams of mules and work horses worked from sunup to sundown seven days a week preparing the ground for the construction workers waiting patiently nearby in their temporary tent cities. The first building was moved off that thoroughfare during the summer of 1906. While the tracks were laid, the new round house was reported to be rapidly taking shape. The first switch engine for the local yards arrived on Tuesday, Sept., 18, 1906.


Depot of 1907

Additional railroad construction in December necessitated the moving of the Western Hotel north about fifty feet. Preliminary work also began at that time on a new depot located below the railroad “Y” opposite Pacific Street. The new deport was completed in 1907 and the old deport of 1874 was dismantled. Part of it was moved by its owner, Henry Barrett, to 319 Atlantic Street, where after a bit of remodeling, he reopened it as “The Old Depot Saloon”. Mrs. Cassie Hill, who lived and worked at the old depot from 1881 to her retirement on March 1, 1907, wrote the following poem commemorating the old depot on the eve of its destruction.She titled it “The Old Depot”.

The old home is not what it used to be

The thoughts lurk near me still;

‘Tis but the fleeting past I see

Where all is calm and still.

Thirty years have past since first

I trod its threshold dear to me,

And now ‘tis but a dream of yore,

The old home I cannot see.

My children, from their infancy,

No other home they knew;

And now how sad for them to see

The old go for the new.

Henry too has left me

Pastures new to find

But ponders o’er the past to see

And dreams of things unkind.

And wonders why this change is made.

The new town “is to be”,

But claims ‘tis nothing more than this –

The cruel Espee.

My greatest comfort now

Is little Hillie dear

With eyes of thoughtful earnestness.

And mind of gentle cheer

The food for grave inquiring speech

He everywhere doth find

And asks me o’er and o’er again

Why were we left behind

No more will I the clatter hear

Of instruments at my door;

And wonder why the trains

Don’t stop as they did in days of yore.

Goodby Espee, I’ll not forget you

Nor all the kindness you have shown;

You have sheltered me from girlhood.

I for you, with age have grown.

And now I am to leave you

I scarcely know what to do;

And every time I think of it,

It makes me think of you

However, by 1910 the new depot was moved back to the railroad “Y” where its predecessors, the depots of 1864 and 1874 had been located.

The great influx of railroad men to Roseville necessitated much new construction. One person who benefited from the increase was Elizabeth “Grandma” Morgan. Morgan moved to Roseville in 1894 after the death of her second husband. When the railroad craze commenced, she turned her home into a railroad boarding house – Morgan’s Boarding House – which became popular for many years. In addition to running the boarding house, “Grandma” Morgan was extremely active in the Minerva Rebekah Lodge of Roseville up to the time of her death on Dec. 21, 1927. By the end of 1907 all vacant lots on Pacific Street had been filled with new business establishments and the old street was busy day and night. The building boom which enhanced Pacific Street’s already healthy business climate spread outward to nearby Church, Main and, most importantly, Lincoln Streets which as early as 1906 showed signs of one day effectively challenging Pacific Street’s economic dominance.

Between 1906 and 1908, hurriedly constructed frame buildings sprang up on both sides of Lincoln Street north of the railroad tracks. Typical of this “hurry up” construction was the business block put up in 1906 which extended north from the old Pratt store building on the west side to the alley, followed by a similar block of buildings erected the following year by J.H. Herring. For several years Herring engaged in farming pursuits after he arrived in Roseville in 1895. By 1906 Herring became associated with Sawtelle in the general merchandising business but retired in 1908 to engage in real estate development. For a time, commencing in 1909, Herring was associated with J.E. Munster in the firm of Munster and Herring but later operated a prosperous real estate business alone where he laid claim to holding the record for being in business continuously longer than any other local businessman.

Similar construction lined the east side of Lincoln Street, including Fred Forlow’s Mint Saloon building and the Linnell Brothers’ Hardware Store. When the railroad transferred from Rocklin to Roseville in 1906, Forlow was in the van guard of newcomers to accompany that move where he opened the Mint Saloon on Lincoln Street. By 1908, the entire block on both sides of the street had been filled in with new construction. J.H. Herring and C.H. Barker were the dominant forces in the development of the west and east sides of Lincoln Street during this period.


Lincoln Street c. 1908

While Lincoln Street rapidly emerged as an important business block in Roseville’s economic life, new construction was also taking place on Main and Church streets. Perhaps the most important figure in the development of Roseville’s north side in the period after 1906 was A.B. McRae. The McRae Building, one of Roseville’s first multi-storied buildings, was completed in October 1908. It contained a fine hall above and modern store and office space below. It opened with great pomp and ceremony by some of the new lodge orders and was considered a triumphant step forward in the development of the community. For many years, the “McRae Opera House” was the cultural center of the town holding plays, pageants, concerts, traveling troupes and other activities. Between 1914 and 1924, the post office was housed in the ground floor of the McRae Building. McRae’s long and productive life came to an end on Friday, June 2, 1932 – two weeks shy of his 80th birthday. Today, the restored McRae Building in Roseville’s rapidly changing Old Town dominates the economic and social life of Roseville’s north side much as it did in that era when McRae was one of Roseville’s leading business and community leaders.


The McRae Building – City collection

Construction completed in 1908 on two additional business houses on Main Street west of the McRae Building. One was the small building opened by Harvey Richardson. Harvey A. Richardson arrived in Roseville in 1907 and for the next 41 years was proprietor of one of Roseville’s longest established and most popular men’s furnishings stores – “Richardson’s.”The original location for Richardson’s was on Main Street next to the McRae Building and in 1909, Richardson’s moved into the McRae Building. Richardson’s moved to another location on Lincoln Street before reaching the Forlow Building on Vernon Street in 1930. Here Richardson’s would stay until 1978, but Richardson would not see that day due to his death in 1948. After the death of Richardson, his widow and daughter continued to operate the business with Paul Wagner serving as manager; later Wagner purchased the long-established firm. In 1978, after 48 years at the Vernon Street location, the business was moved to the former Safeway building in Roseville Square. The original Richardson store building was later occupied by the U.S. Market, which was removed in 1909 to make way for a new two-story building erected by McRae and John A. Hill. For many years, Zeller’s Confectionary was housed in this building.

Adjacent to the Richardson building was the A.B. Broyer & Son Furniture Store, also completed in 1908 after Broyer moved to Roseville with his father. In 1914, Broyer was elected County Assessor and Tax Collector of Placer County and subsequently sold his furniture and hardware business to M.B. Johnson. He was admitted to the bar in 1919 and worked with a couple of different partners before practicing law alone in 1924. During the summer of 1924, Broyer partnered with C.P. Magner in the undertaking business and on July 1 of that year they bought out the Guy P. West Funeral Home in Roseville and worked there till Broyer’s death in September 1925. His son Elliot was elected to the position of County Coroner in 1930 and in 1936 he opened his own mortuary business on Lincoln Street, which he operated in conjunction with his brother Al.The Broyer Mortuary building now houses Cochrane’s Chapel of the Roses.


A.B. Broyer Furniture store – City collection

Johnson, who bought Broyer’s hardware store, continued to operate it for the next 24 years. In 1933, failing health compelled him to turn over the reins to his son; Johnson died only two years later. Today, the old Johnson Hardware Store has been extensively remodeled and now houses Bruno Romani’s Onyx Bar.

New commercial activity was also turning Church Street into a minor business block.As early as 1906, B.N. Scribner of Rocklin opened a store in the recently completed Decater building at the corner of Church and Main streets. Later, the Grouches Brothers located there followed by Andrews Market. Below Scribner’s, John Herring had put up a small frame building which housed various businesses before it burned down in 1924 and was replaced with the present brick edifice. A short distance down the street from the Herring building was the old two-story brick Doyle home which later for many years served as a private hospital under the direction of Dr. Fanning.

Numerous real estate firms came into existence; subdivisions were laid out and miles of sidewalks and streets were put down. Up to October 1906, local realtors reported the sale of some five hundred lots in Roseville at an average price of $250 per lot. A serious water shortage was created by the tremendous influx of newcomers. The water demand could not be met by the back yard pumps that had provided Roseville’s citizenry with its water supply. Consequently, a water franchise was granted to Hemphill & Leahy, who earlier had been granted an electric light franchise. Starting operations in the fall of 1906, the Roseville Water Company, with two reservoirs – one of which held eight million gallons – commenced building mains and pipes in every direction.

Business growth kept pace with the ever increasing population. Among new businesses to be established in the latter half of 1906 was Frank Lewis’ drug store. Lewis had operated a successful drug store in Rocklin but moved along with the railroad to Roseville in 1906 where his drug store took up residence on Lincoln Street. As one of the original members of the Roseville Telephone Company (organized in 1910 as the Home Telephone Company), he served as its Vice President for many years. He operated his drug store until June 1932, when after 25 years of continual service, he sold out to the Allen Brothers and moved to a new location on Vernon Street where he continued until his retirement. Lewis died at his home on March 21, 1957.


F.A. Lewis Drug store – City collection

Charles Decater was part of the mass exodus out of Rocklin to Roseville when the railroad transferred.During this move, Decater relocated six of his 14 homes. He was a major force in moving buildings on old Atlantic Street so that new miles of railroad tracks could be constructed. Many of the early post-1906 homes and business buildings owe their construction to Decater. Besides his building, contracting and house-moving business, Decater operated one of Roseville’s many railroad workers’ boarding houses, operated a hog ranch at Rocklin and served as a member of the Roseville Volunteer Fire Department since its inception in 1907 with a turn as chief. According to family estimates, by 1929, Decater had built, traded for or purchased approximately 150 rental units at Roseville. Unfortunately the Depression took its toll on Decater who lost all of his extensive holdings and was $10,000 in debt by 1932. Even still, Decater continued the house-moving business until his death in 1940.


Homes moving – City collection

In October, Roseville’s first bank, the Roseville Banking Company, was organized with William Sawtell as its president. The location of this pioneer bank was on the first floor of the former Branstetter’s Hall building on Pacific Street. In 1907, Roseville’s pioneer financial institution purchased the corner of Lincoln and Church Streets (Bank Corner) and commenced construction of a fine, two-story building, making it the first substantial building to be erected on the block. The Roseville Banking Company provided financing for much of the new construction which took place after 1906. Before the year ended, a weekly newspaper, the Roseville Register, had been added to the rapidly growing community.


Roseville Banking Co. - City collection

Of the large numbers of newcomers who flocked to the small community to take advantage of job opportunities, many were Greek and Italian immigrants newly arrived in America. Limited knowledge of the English language led to an informal appointment of a leader or “boss” who could speak, read and write some English – one who would handle relations between labor and management.

A Greek immigrant, John Leles arrived in Roseville after fleeing the devestation of the 1906 San Francisco fire and earthquake. He bought the Harry Clark blacksmith shop property on Pacific Street and constructed on its site an impressive three-storied hotel which he named the New Frisco House. Business prospered until a fire in 1911 destroyed the hotel and the rest of the block. Leles was able to rebuild, with the financial help of Gottlieb Hanisch, a small one-story brick building on the old site and opened the New Frisco Bar which he operated until 1916. At that time, Leles leased out the saloon and commenced operating a butcher shop in the back portion of the building which faced the alley between Pacific and Church streets. In 1920, Leles removed the butcher shop to the Cassie Hill building on Lincoln Street where the Roseville Meat Market operated continually for the next thirty years. Leles eventually retired in 1953 while management of the Roseville Meat Market continued under his children until it closed out in 1960.


New Frisco House – City collection

From 1906 to the present, Roseville’s considerable Greek and Immigrant populations have played important roles in the economic, political and social development of Roseville.

Nevada Carson Busby also moved to Roseville to become part of the booming business industry. After moving about the country, Busby eventually located in Roseville in 1907. There he purchased three Royer lots on Vernon Street and built the Busby Hotel, Superior Garage and all the real estate between the City Hall and the corner of Grant Street. Busby did not stay in Roseville long, however, before leaving for other ventures in 1924. His nephew, Nevada Carson Jr. was the only family member to stay behind in Roseville.

While Roseville’s business district was growing by leaps and bounds and its population increasing daily, the community still found time for entertainment. A baseball team was organized and games were held at the depot ball park in the railroad “Y,” and later, up in the Forest Oaks subdivision .The town band was reorganized by the Schellhous brothers and concerts were held regularly at the bandstand in Depot Park. Summer picnics along the rose-bedecked banks of Dry Creek or out at Sylvan Grove continued to be popular, along with Sunday drives up the old country road to Rocklin. Dances at Branstetter Hall continued to provide entertainment for residents. Sometimes, when weather permitted, these social dances moved onto the outdoor platform in front of the Western Hotel.

Another popular business with residents was the famous “Roserie”, owned and operated by Henry L. Schmitt. Schmitt moved to Roseville with his wife Lucy in 1908 where they opened their own business on the corner of Vernon and Taylor streets. The Roserie combined a candy confectionary, a soda fountain and a tamale parlor all under one roof. Due to its overwhelming popularity, the Roserie had to move twice before settling in the Gordon Hall (now Eagles Hall) in 1913. From the beginning, the Roserie was noted for its tempting array of home-made candies, ice cream and other soda delights, and became popular with young and old alike. Particularly tempting were Schmitt’s famed husk tamales, a huge caldron of which was always steaming in the back room kitchen. Schmitt continued supervising the Roserie until his death in 1938, with his eldest son Carlos assuming management. Shortages of sugar and other ingredients brought about by the advent of World War II forced the Roserie to close in 1942.It was never reopened.

The Roseville Chamber of Commerce was organized on Oct. 17, 1906 to serve as town council and to consider still more improvements for the rapidly progressing town. A pressing need for adequate drainage for Roseville’s streets, an electric light system, and a local telephone exchange prompted the Chamber of Commerce to immediate action. A communication was sent at once to the Southern Pacific authorities regarding a drainage system, and shortly thereafter, work was started by the railroad at Grant Street on a ditch which was to cut through to the creek.

Mr. Leahy, who had been given the electric light franchise, was contacted by the Committee on Public Improvements concerning the installation of electric lights. By the end of November a carload of poles had arrived and another was expected shortly. The Capital Telephone Company was contacted in December regarding the installation of a local exchange and informed the committee that if 12 or more subscribers could be obtained such an exchange would be possible. Mr. Linnell obtained 14 subscribers, and a 50-phone switchboard was soon installed.


Telephone line workers at Sawtelle’s store – City collection

Rapid and continued growth throughout 1906 and 1907 brought up the problem of adequate fire protection. At the instigation of the Chamber of Commerce, fire hose and hose carts were purchased and fire hydrants installed throughout the community. By January 1908, Roseville was the proud possessor of two hose carts and two hundred feet of hose; two additional hose carts were added a year later. That same year, the Chamber of Commerce pointed out the need for the creation of a hose company for each cart. It was not until March, 1910 however, that a “Municipal Volunteer Fire Department” was organized. Twenty-one members attended the initial meeting at the city hall where G.M. Hanisch was named Fire Chief.


Roseville Volunteer Fire Department with hose cart – City collection

Other improvements to be considered by the chamber in 1907 and 1908 included improved mail service, better streets and roads, street sprinkling and law enforcement. Possibly the most serious problem to confront the hard working Chamber of Commerce during this period, though, was the one created by the lack of any kind of municipal sewage system and garbage disposal service. A sanitation committee was appointed in February 1907 to investigate the matter, but not until 1910, when the city trustees passed a sewer bond election for approval of voters, was this problem effectively met. Meanwhile, the problem of health and sanitation brought about by a lack of sewage and garbage disposal system resulted in a diphtheria epidemic in March of 1908. Complaints multiplied by the score, and Dr. Ashby, the health officer, tiring of criticism, resigned.

Saloons accounted for the majority of business growth in 1907. At the time there were no fewer than 12 drinking emporiums listed in the advertising columns of the Register. By November 1909, this already imposing list peaked at 20 – three of which were so situated that railroad workers could reach them while going to and from work. Because of the numerous saloons which sprang up along Pacific Street, that thoroughfare received the nickname “Whiskey Row.” The problem of alcoholism finally reached the point where Southern Pacific officials said that it could not trust its trains to men who appeared for duty intoxicated and demanded removal of objectionable saloons near the railroad yards.

By March, 1908, Roseville had increased in population from 400 to 2,000. Two million dollars had been spent on the railroad and “unprecedented activity in real estate transaction” was reported by the town’s six realty firms. Stores reported going up on all sides. Plans for a new hotel were drawn up by C.H. Barker of the Western Hotel in April. Shortly thereafter, the West House, a popular eatery, was established on the corner of Atlantic and Washington streets. Another such local eatery was the Porter House. Between the years of 1907 and 1910, St. Rose – Roseville’s first Catholic Church – was constructed near Vernon and Grant streets.


West House – City collection


Porter House – City collection

By July, Roseville’s second newspaper, the Roseville Tribune, published by Crome & Beecroft, put out its first issue. R.F. Brill & Son purchased the Tribune on March 1, 1920 and three years later (1923) acquired the Register from A.J. Hardin.Shortly thereafter (May 28, 1923), the first issue of the Roseville Tribune and Register rolled off the presses. Brill sold out to Fred Green and Frank Bartholomew of the Roseville Press in 1942, and the old Tribune and Register was merged into a new publication name the Roseville Press Tribune, which still operates to this day.

The school census of 1908 showed 313 children attending class compared to 154 for the preceding year. By 1910, enrollment had increased to 695, of which 491 were between the ages of 6 and 17. The existing school facilities proved to be hopelessly inadequate and a bond issue was voted on April 20, 1910 for two new school houses – one in Roseville Heights (Main Street School), and another on Vernon Street (Oak Street School). The election carried 90 to 10 and by fall the two new school houses were completed. These twin buildings served the educational needs of Roseville until 1925, when the Vernon Street School was completed. The Oak Street School gradually retired from use and it was eventually torn down. The Main Street School continued to be utilized by the school population on the north side of town until 1934, when the Woodbridge School was completed.

While Roseville was expanding outwardly in every direction, railroad construction continued at an accelerated pace. In January 1908 contracts were let for the newly organized Pacific Fruit Express Company’s refrigerator plants at Roseville, Colton and Las Vegas. The Roseville plant alone was to have an estimated storage capacity of some 11,000 tons of ice and a daily ice-making potential of 200 tons. Work began in March, 1908 under the direction of Mr. Hyatt. By February 1909, the almost completed $250,000 ice-making and fruit cooling plant was in operation with an ice-making capacity of 300 tons per day, and a storage capacity of 17,000 tons. Officials of the Southern Pacific Company inspected the new facilities and shortly thereafter (March) announced that henceforth all fruit cars would be iced at Roseville rather than at Sacramento. Work on a large pre-cooling building commenced in April, 1909, along with excavations for a number of PFE car shops plus the installation of additional miles of track necessary for the expanded operations. It was announced that all the PFE shops would be moved from Sacramento as soon as the shops and 15,000 feet of repair tracks were completed. By July, 1909, stock yards had been completed and put into operation on the west side of the main line. For a distance of over a mile between Vernon Street and the main track, land was being leveled for six more lines of track.The first test of the new plant ran in October 1909.


PFE Ice Plant – City collection

Meanwhile, removal of the Rocklin roundhouse, force and machinery to Roseville was completed on Saturday, April 25, 1908, and Rocklin’s position as a railroad center came to an end. Amidst the transfer of the freight crews from Rocklin to Roseville, not one man lost his run. With the removal of the railroad facilities from Rocklin completed, much of that town’s population and many of its buildings moved to Roseville. The big move took more than two years (1906-1908) to complete. According to the Roseville Register of Oct. 28, 1909, some 43 residences had been moved to Roseville from Rocklin.

In the space of two years Roseville had developed into a bustling railroad center. Two of the largest round houses in the state had been constructed there, along with 45 miles of sidetracks to handle increased business. By January 1909, an additional 40 miles of tracks were added to the yard, which in addition to the round houses and machine shops also included a store, warehouse and office buildings, a hospital and railroad men’s clubhouse. The year 1909 also saw the arrival of the first two articulated Mallet compounds (Numbers 4000 and 4001).

Roseville’s phenomenal growth in the space of two short years was emphasized in the Roseville Register of Oct. 28, 1909:

NORTH SIDE OF TRACKS

Residences built or building since 1906……..194

Residences, old original town………………..30

Residences moved from Rocklin…………….38

Business buildings, old and new……………..76

______

338

SOUTH SIDE OF TRACKS

Residences built or building since 1906……..246

Residences, old original town………………..54

Residences moved from Rocklin…………….5

Business buildings, old and new……………..37

______

342

The Register also reported about 50 additional buildings under construction, thus swelling these already impressive figures. This tremendous growth, coupled with its many problems, resulted in an increasingly strong sentiment for incorporation. Accordingly, the Chamber of Commerce met on Jan. 6, 1908, to take up the matter.

Strong opposition to such a move was voiced by the Southern Pacific, fearing it would lose control of its yards if the city incorporated. F.C. Hill of the Chamber of Commerce traveled to San Francisco to discuss the matter with J.H. Young, general superintendent of the Southern Pacific. After some discussion, it was suggested by Hill that any plan for incorporation exclude railroad property. This was agreeable to Young, and plans went forward for the proposed incorporation.On Jan. 21, 1909, a “Petition to Incorporate the Town of Roseville” appeared in the Register.Three months later, on April 2, 1909, the people of Roseville went to the polls and of the 300 votes cast, 241 voted for incorporation while 59 voted in opposition.William Sawtelle, R.F. Theile, William Haman, Dr. Bradford Woodbridge and R.H. Wells were elected as the city’s first trustees.

The organizational meeting of the Board of Trustees, as the City Council was called then, was held on April 10 at the bank building. At that time, William Sawtelle was elected chairman of the Board of Trustees, which in effect gave him the distinction of being Roseville’s first mayor. Lack of space prompted the board at a subsequent meeting to change its meeting place from the bank building to McRae Hall. Still later (August), the hall over Johnson & Musson’s store (the old J.D. Pratt store), which until recently had housed the offices of the Roseville Register, was rented as a temporary meeting place for a monthly stipend of $12 including utilities.


Original Board of Trustees – City collection

Formation of a Board of Trustees and the selection of a mayor signified the end of Roseville, the peaceful little town and the beginning of Roseville, the modern city.


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