There's a lot of great history in just a tiny sliver of scenic Alpine County. That's the take-away from "Historic Alpine: A Self-Guided Driving Tour of Woodfords, Diamond Valley and Fredericksburg" - a new book just released by local historian/author Karen Dustman.
"Many of Alpine County's historic sites have been nearly forgotten, but can still be easily spotted when you know where to look," said Dustman. "Within an hour's drive there are over three dozen historic sites you can visit, from a piece of the Emigrant Trail to the old stone schoolhouse at Woodfords, several original old ranches, and the Fredericksburg cemetery where so many early pioneers are buried."
With four maps and simple driving directions, the book conveys the reader along 24 miles of scenic back roads as the text describes various historic landmarks. Visit the spot where Daniel Woodfords operated his "Sign of the Elephant" Hotel in 1849, and discover the site of a "roadhouse" that once held a dance hall in the second story and a bar on the first floor. Learn tales of the pioneering settlers who lived and died in Alpine - including Snowshoe Thompson.
"History is about more than place - it's also about people," said Dustman. "So the book includes information about many of the special individuals who once called this part of Alpine County home."
Historic Alpine: A Self-Guided Driving Tour features both modern-day photos and historic scenes from days gone by. The book is available at the Markleeville Library, the Alpine County Chamber of Commerce, and the Alpine County Museum.