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Taking a stroll along the streets of Old Sacramento is like walking back in time

Posted by docrocks on August 8, 2017

Taking a stroll along the front street and other streets of Old Sacramento is like walking back in time.  The feel of the early gold rush can make your hair stand on end.  The buildings and the history that carved those buildings give tourists a taste of what it was like during those good old days. It was declared a U.S National Historic Landmark District after undergoing continued restoration and development since the 1960’s.

The District is often flooded due to its proximity to the Sacramento River system. Old Sacramento was raised above the normal ground level for added defense. This provided an extensive levee system which explains the wood planks found on various surfaces in front of store fronts and sidewalks throughout Old Sacramento and the Downtown areas.

Founded by John A. Sutter in 1848, Old Sacramento grew economically during the gold rush era and in the decades after. During the gold rush, it became a major distribution point, a commercial and agricultural center, and a terminus for wagon trains, stagecoaches, riverboats, the telegraph, the pony express and the first transcontinental railroad.

But in 1960, Old Sacramento fell into disrepair and disrepute. So in the mid 1960’s, a plan was set forth to redevelop the area and to designate it a national historic district.  Since then, 53 historic buildings, most of which date back to the 19th century, were restored to a reasonable approximation of their original appearance. There are still some that are being used as originally intended while most have become devoted to housing restaurants, gift shops, or other businesses catering to tourists.

Tourists come from all over the world to get a “feel” of what it was like during the gold rush days. But others come especially for the River City Saloon. The salon, housed originally by a framed wood building, was reconstructed in 1857 using bricks.  Like the other buildings of Old Sacramento, the River City Saloon was further restored to resemble the original establishment.  What used to be a “house of ill repute” is now a place of good fun, food, entertainment and history. It caters to families and serves the best nicely priced menu of award winning food, drinks such as the original Sarsaparilla, live music and video and so much more.

Feel the rush of the “Gold Rush” in Old Sacramento District. Walk through history and experience it through the different gift shops, restaurants and the River City Saloon.