On the banks of the Eel River, amongst Northern California's towering redwood forests, lie the towns of Scotia and Rio Dell. Their histories inseparably intertwined, these two towns formed a larger community supporting the needs of local settlers and industry. Scotia, constructed by the Pacific Lumber Company in the 1880s, stands as a pristine example of the once-prevalent company town in America. The small farming community of Rio Dell flourished along with its sister city and grew to accommodate the needs of an expanding workforce in Humboldt's redwood lumber industry. Where Scotia was orderly and tightly controlled by Pacific Lumber Co. management, Rio Dell developed a reputation for its remote setting, rowdy lumbermen, and bootlegged whiskey.
About the Author
James R. Garrison grew up in Rio Dell and has since lived in Alaska, Washington, and Oregon while working and raising a family. After returning to his hometown, Garrison earned his bachelor of arts in history in 2014 from Humboldt State University, where he did extensive research on the settlement period of Humboldt County. Using images obtained from the Humboldt State University Library, local museums, and private collections, Garrison details the history of these two towns and the timber industry that was at their center.
Table of Contents
1 From Eagle Prairie to Rio Dell 11
2 From Forestville to Scotia 41
3 Wildwood 99
4 Both Sides of the River 111