The Wells Fargo Office Building

The Wells Fargo Office Building, complete with its iron shutters and fancy wrought iron balcony, is a Gold Country classic which dates back to 1858. Run by William Daegener, the express office was originally housed in a large wooden building known as the American Hotel which stood on this site in 1853. This structure was destroyed by the fire of 1854, after which its owner, Willard Vanarsdall, quickly rebuilt of wood. Vanarsdall died in San Francisco in November of 1855, and Daegener purchased the building from his widow the following April. In August of 1857, it went up in flames. But Daegener was not to be daunted. On April 24 of 1858, he contracted with B. Stout of Sonora to erect a two-story brick building on the south portion of his lot, to be built for the sum of $4,400. When the distinctive building was finished, Daegener ran the Wells Fargo Express business in the front room of the bottom floor. The rear portion was the living room for his family and upstairs were located two bedrooms. The beautiful cast iron balcony grille on the second floor was shipped from Troy, New York, and arrived in Columbia via mule train.

California Gold Country
Gold Country
Return to Home Page
Malakoff Home