The rich placers of San Antonio Creek were first located in 1848.
Shortly afterwards, David Foreman settled in the area and established a
combination trading post, saloon and hotel for which the site was early
known as Foremans Ranch. The place soon came to be called Fourth
Crossing; however, as it was located at the fourth river crossing on the
road between Stockton and Angels Camp. The four crossings were at the
Calaveras River, the north fork of the Calaveras, Calaveritas Creek, and
San Antonio Creek.
Alexander Beritzhoff joined Foreman and the two established a ferry
service for those wishing to cross the river. They later built a toll
bridge that operated as such until January of 1888, at which time its
current owner, William Reddick, sold it for $1,200 to the Calaveras
County, which then made it a free bridge. Reddick had arrived in
California in 1849 and settled down in Fourth Crossing after a brief try
at mining in Angels Camp. He bought the bridge in 1858 for $5,000 in
partnership with his son-in-law, John Hill. Reddick later acquired full
ownership on March 21 of 1860, by buying out Hill for $1,000.
Fourth Crossing was one of the early mining camps of Calaveras
County and was known during the 1850ís for its rich placers. Lode mining
also proved very productive in this area after the placers gave out. The
first Justice Court in Calaveras County was located here with Judge
Bachman serving as the Justice of the Peace. Fourth Crossing also had an
early school and a post office was established here on June 2 of 1855.
When the gold finally gave out, the camp remained an important stage
and freighting stop and continued to serve the Southern Mines as such
until the turn of the century. After that time, the town slowly dwindled
away, the land returning to its former appearance with grasses and trees
hiding the scars left by the early day gold seekers.
Fourth Crossing is located just west of Hwy 49 between Altaville and
Visit Fourth Crossing's Historic Sites