(Caution) Do Not Stop on Tracks

Mill Valley no longer has a railroad running through town. But this historical sign still serves as a warning for railroad employees. Where is it?

Mill Valley no longer has a railroad running through town. But this historical sign still serves as a warning for railroad employees. Where is it?

Theo Phillips May 13, 2012 at 12:32 AM
It's on the Mill Valley Lumber Company. The Mill Valley Branch of the NorthWestern Pacific Railroad went up the middle of Miller Avenue until circa 1960, and MVLC was probably the only customer on the line before it was abandoned.
Rico May 13, 2012 at 01:54 AM
Is it on the Mill Valley Lumber Co. now ? If so, then I would think that is was removed from the original installation location. The commuter and freight trains used to run up the center of Miller Ave. until about 1946, but they went all the way up to the Depot, so why would a sign like that be planted at the Lumber Co. ?. I think the original placement of that sign was in Lytton Square, at the end of the tourist train that was pushed up to the top of Mt. Tam and then coasted back down to Mill Valley's downtown. The tourists would take the ferry to Sausalito, ride the electric train up to downtown Mill Valley, debark and walk across the street and hop the gravity train up Mt. Tam., which was steam powered. The commuter/freight train that ran 1.2 miles in Mill Valley was helpful in getting milled lumber out of Mill Valley to the ferries in Sausalito, and then on to help rebuild San Francisco after the big quake. There are many streets in the hills of Mill Valley that were built as logging roads at first, but were then used to build up Mill Valley with the faithful horse and carts that at first brought timber down to the Old Mill, and then hauled construction materials and appliances up to build the houses. Horses and Mules were what built Mill Valley's hillside neighborhoods.
Jim Welte May 15, 2012 at 12:25 AM
Theo - you are correct! And Ricardo, thanks very much for the history lesson - much appreciated.
Jim Weeder May 16, 2012 at 03:11 PM
It is on the north side of the lumber company. and as for the roads Dowd's moving and storage put in a lot of the roads to the buliding sites for peoples summer homes
Rico May 16, 2012 at 03:52 PM
Jim Weeder, Thanks for that info about Dowd's. I did not realize that they also built roads. I have seen the picture of the Dowd's horse and buggy. I guess one could say that Dowd's moving and storage was instrumental in building early Mill Valley. For those of you who are interested in the history of Mill Valley (Eastland), I have a great book titled "Mill Valley-The Early Years" written by Barry Spitz in association with the Mill Valley Historical Society. It is a fascinating book with many old photographs. I would imagine that this book is available in the Mill Valley Public Library.


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