Friday, March 1, 2013

The Railroad in Tres Pinos

What you're looking at is Highway 25 in Tres Pinos. You're looking west from a hitching post at the 19th Hole Booze and Food. Tres Pinos is a quiet little village, but over a 100 years ago, wowza!

Back in 1873, the Southern Pacific ran a line to Tres Pinos. Soon the town became a busy shipping center for hay, cattle, and grain. The railroad also shipped quicksilver for the New Idria Mines. The railroad ran two passenger and two freight trains daily, states the Inn at Tres Pinos Web site.

According to the pinos web page: "Among the businesses in downtown Tres Pinos were seven enormous grain warehouses, a scale house, six saloons (one that was illegal), bullfighting arena, and large hotel (as well as rumored bordellos)."

The story goes that initially the Southern Pacific planned to build the railroad to Paicines, which back then was the original Tres Pinos. What we know as the town of Tres Pinos today was then called Paicines. After laying railroad lines to Paicines, the Southern Pacific no longer wanted to go further. The railroad somehow got the two communities to switch names by 1874 so that it can say it completed its objective: Build a railroad line to Tres Pinos.

The Southern Pacific dismantled the railroad line in 1944.

February 25 to March 3 theme for Take 25 to Hollister: Trains and Railroads 

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