Photo by Peter Tye

Photo by Peter Tye

The Webber Lake Hotel, part of the Truckee Donner Land Trust's 3,000-acre Webber Lake property, has been named to the National Register of Historic Places.

This designation wouldn't have been possible without the work of the Sierra County Historical Society and Architectural Historian Corri Jimenez. Webber Lake and the Webber Lake Hotel have a long and rich history, well worth preserving.

Built by Dr. David G. Webber in 1860, the Webber Lake Hotel was one of the key stops on the Henness Pass Road overland route, and is the only remaining of the original stops today. Only a few short years after the tragedy of the Donner Party, Henness Pass became the preferred route instead of Donner Pass, seeing as many as 100 wagons a day, with 24/7 traffic passing through.

With the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad, the hotel transitioned to becoming a recreation destination popular for fishing, boating and enjoying the outdoors. Famous guests included Red Cross Founder Clara Barton, actress Lola Montez and painter Thomas Hill.

This designation, and the preservation of Webber Lake's history, were particularly important to past Land Trust employee KV Van Lom, who passed away a year ago.

Today, the hotel and the lake look much as they did more than 100 years ago, allowing visitors to experience what it must have been like for early emigrants making their way to California. Learn more about the Webber Lake Property here.

Greyson Howard