Tuesdays in my Town - the Historic Cary House Hotel

also known as the "jewel of placerville," the cary house hotel was originally built in 1856.
it was one of the first places i loved in placerville, when i was twelve years old and fancied myself a little anne of green gables. i knew it was a place she would find romantic.

i get to walk past it on my way to work at the bookery.
the brick of the cary house is original! it was built to withstand fires, and it has stood for over 150 years.

the back of the cary house:

can you see anything in the rust stains?

while walking down the alley the other day, my lovely coworker sharon pointed out to me the mysterious elephants hiding in these panels. the one above is a momma, the one below a baby. sharon is a mystical woman who sees this as a sign of a matriarchal community we have built at the bookshop.
she says she looks for these elephants every day and they make her feel peaceful.


supposedly the cary house is one of the most haunted spots in placerville.
you can read all about what nancy bradley, paranormal investigator extraordinaire, has to say about it here.
incidentally, her specialty is "gold rush ghosts" and a couple days ago she came to the bakery underneath where joey and emily live to investigate some mysterious activity. she told the owners she'd like to check out j & e's apartment upstairs (they weren't home) because the spirits seemed to be focused there!
when they first moved there, emily had some crazy experiences and was frightened all the time...no wonder.


our beautiful cary house, as seen from main street.



inside the lobby, the stain glass art was done by a local artist and there are four panels depicting the four seasons.


history around every corner...

this piano is from 1876 and it is called a Chickering Square Grand.
it was shipped over from boston way back then and still has all its original strings!


the front desk, which still has the guest log from 1888 that supposedly has mark twain's signature.


after taking some pictures i met up with a regular bookstore customer, alejandro, who is a very happy guy...


and why not when the day looks like this?


one last tidbit about the cary house; darin and i stayed there on our wedding night!
his mom and aunt had gotten in there and decorated our suite with candles and rose petals and a bottle of champagne, so sweet. i loved feeling like a tiny link in the romantic history of the cary house on our first night as husband and wife!

i don't have photos (everything was so crazy) so i will just show you these from the next day as we started our honeymoon road trip down the pacific coast highway, on a cliff at big sur.
 


hope you are all having a wonderfully fallish day.
i'm off to the bookstore now, nestled in the shadow of the "jewel of placerville."


Comments

Heidi Ann said…
All right now, Heather - however do you manage it? You have chosen a location today that is very close to my heart, as well! When it was known as the Raffles Hotel, I worked in the dining room that was at the back on the first floor. It was called the Cedar Dining Room, and I went to work there after my job at Sierra Nevada House in Coloma. I also remember going to visit my 4th grade teacher (at Gold Oak School), Mrs. Ashley, when she lived in one of the rooms upstairs. A lot of people ( she was quite elderly) lived there at that time.
Between yours and the ones Tina writes, I sure am loving these Placerville posts!
Little Lesiw said…
I'm so glad you chose the Cary House because believe it or not, I've NEVER been inside. One of these days I'll need to go check out the rooms, as I'm sure they're absolutely fabulous.

I love your 'Tuesdays in my Town'... makes me appreciate ol' P'ville :)
Chelsea said…
Once on one of Jordan's birthdays we had the grand idea of going on a ghost hunt and got trapped in the elevator at like 2 in the morning. I think the ghost's must have been playing a trick of us... because the door wouldn't open... and after SEVERAL minutes it finally just opened...???
Teenysparkles said…
oooooh, love it. It exudes mystery and familiarity all at once. So great that you had your wedding night there.
wonderful post. I love the ghosts of Placerville. I think they howl my name more often than I would like.
My mom worked at the Cary house for a good piece of time when I was a teenager. I really would like to go tour it again .

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