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Eastern California State Route 16


Eastern California State Route 16 is a 32-mile segment of the highway is located in Sacramento County and Amador County.  The eastern segment once was bridged through downtown Sacramento to what is now the western segment near Woodland.  Eastern California State Route 16 begins at US Route 50 in Sacramento and largely follows Jackson Road east to California State Route 49 in the Sierra Nevada Mountains.  The highway passes through numerous communities which were tied to the early Gold Rush era in California.  Pictured as the blog cover is California State Route 16 at the original Deer Creek Bridge in Sloughhouse during 1948.  

Pertaining to the relinquished central segment of California State Route 16 in Sacramento area more information can be found in the blog below:

Highways in and around Old Sacramento; US 40, US 99W, CA 16, CA 24, CA 70, CA 99, CA 275, and more

Information pertaining to the segment of California State Route 16 west of Sacramento can be in the blog below:

Western California State Route 16 (gribblenation.org)



Part 1; the history of eastern California State Route 16

What is now eastern California State Route 16 first entered the State Highway System as part of the 1919 Third State Highway Bond Act in the form of Legislative Route Number 54 (LRN 54).  The original definition was simply "Michigan Bar to Drytown."

LRN 54 can be seen on 1924 California Highway Commission Map.  LRN 54 can be seen entirely located within Amador County.  The highway can be seen terminating at the Sacramento County line just shy of Michigan Bar.  



The June 1924 California Highways & Public Works announced a relocation survey for LRN 54 had recently been completed.  


The December 1924 California Highways & Public Works announced Amador County had secured the right-of-way to relocate LRN 54 between Drytown and Central House.  


The December 1925 California Highways & Public Works announced grading was complete along the new alignment of LRN 54 between Drytown and Central House.  The highway is noted to have been improved to the vicinity of Michigan Bar.  


During 1933 LRN 54 was extended west to LRN 11 (US Route 50) near Perkins in Sacramento County.  The 21-mile addition was announced in the April 1933 California Highways & Public Works.  


The August 1934 California Highways & Public Works announced LRN 54 as a component of California State Route 16.  



LRN 54 was codified during 1935 as "LRN 11 near Perkins to Drytown passing near Michigan Bar and Huot's Ranch."

California State Route 16/LRN 54 can be seen in detail on the 1935 Division of Highways Maps of Sacramento County and Amador County.  The Sacramento County map shows the highway diverging from US Route 50/LRN 11 near Perkins at Folsom Boulevard onto Jackson Road.  The highway followed Jackson Road east from Perkins through Walsh, Twelvemile House, Sloughhouse, Cosumne, Bridge House and Live Oak to the Amador County line near Michigan Bar.  


The Amador County Map displays California State Route 16/LRN 54 continuing east to a terminus at California State Route 49 at Central House near the outskirts of Drytown.  The highway is shown to pass only through Forest Home while in Amador County. 

The December 1937 California Highways & Public Works announced the existing bridge at the Consumnes River near Live Oak was to be replaced with a concrete structure.  For unclear reasons this span was not constructed.  

The September/October 1948 California Highways & Public Works featured the ongoing reconstruction of California State Route 16/LRN 54 at Sloughhouse.  The existing alignment passed over the flood prone Deer Creek Bridge at the heart of the community.  The new alignment was being constructed north of Sloughhouse and is noted to have an anticipated opening during early 1949.  Sloughhouse is noted to have been founded in 1850 by Vermont immigrant Jared Sheldon.  Sheldon and his business partner owned portions of Rancho Omochumnes which they operated numerous businesses from.  Sheldon was killed during a dispute with miners in 1851.  




The July/August 1950 California Highways & Public Works announced a contract had been awarded to construct a new bridge at the Cosumnes River on California State Route 16/LRN 54 near Bridge House.  The structure was ultimately completed during 1952.  


As part of the wider 1964 State Highway Renumbering all the Legislative Route Numbers were dropped.  What was LRN 54 was redefined as segment C of California State Route 16.  The specific wording of segment C was "Route 50 near Perkins to Route 49 near Drytown."  The then new definition of California State Route 16 appears for the first time on the 1964 Division of Highways Map.  


The May/June 1964 California Highways & Public Works featured photos of the abandoned original alignment of California State Route 16 west of Sloughhouse.  The segment west of Sloughhouse is noted to have been abandoned in 1949 when the highway was relocated to the north.  


2014 Assembly Bill 1957 authorized the relinquishment of eastern California State Route 16 in the city of Sacramento.  2015 Assembly Bill 652 authorized the relinquishment of eastern California State Route 16 east from the city limits of Sacramento to Grant Line Road.  2015 Assembly Bill 630 put a stipulation upon the city of Sacramento that reassurance signage would need to be maintained relinquished highway.  The relinquishment of eastern California State Route 16 in Sacramento was authorized by the California Transportation Commission during March 2016.  



Part 2; a drive on eastern California State Route 16

The eastern segment of California State Route 16 begins in Sacramento at US Route 50 Exit 9.  Eastern California State Route 16 begins at the exit and follows Howe Road to Folsom Boulevard. 








California State Route 16 eastbound follows Folsom Boulevard (former US Route 50) to Jackson Road.  The highway crosses a surface rail crossing upon transitioning onto Jackson Road.  






Traffic is advised east of the rail crossing that Sloughhouse is 16 miles away.



State maintenance of California State Route 16 beings again at Watt Avenue (Postmile SAC 4.165).  Watt Avenue serves as the southeastern city limit of Sacramento.  


California State Route 16 continues east from the Sacramento metro area.  The highway intersects Sacramento County Route E2 at Grant Line Road (Postmile SAC 12.543). 






The older alignment of California State Route 16 at Sloughhouse is now partially a component of Meiss Road (Postmile SAC 14.013).  The Deer Creek Bridge bypassed in 1949 can be visited along with the remains of Sloughhouse.  










California State Route 16 continues east from Sloughhouse and passes through Rancho Murieta.  At the Cosumnes River (Postmile SAC 19.94) modern traffic crosses the span constructed in 1952.  The older truss span north of the modern highway was constructed in 1908.






California State Route 16 intersects Michigan Bar Road east of Rancho Murieta (Postmile SAC R22.053).  Michigan Bar Road can be used to access the Michigan Bar townsite and 1908 crossing at the Cosumnes River.  



California State Route 16 eastbound passes Ione Road and enters Amador County.  



California State Route 16 eastbound passes by the historic plaque for Forest Home near Forest Home Road (Postmile AMA R3.718).  Forest Home was originally a stage house on the road to Jackson.  Forest Home township organized in 1854 and the community was the location of a copper mine beginning in 1873.  




California State Route 16 east of Forest Home Road intersects California State Route 124 (Postmile AMA 9.00).








Eastern California State Route 16 terminates at California State Route 49 near Drytown.  




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