The County of Calaveras is located in northern California and is spread over areas that include both portions of the Sierra Nevada as well as Gold Country. It is considered one of the original founding counties of California and is named for the nearby Calaveras River.
Calaveras County is known for its topography, including a number of well-known state caverns (e.g., Mercer and Moaning caverns), an assortment of vineyards and wineries, dozens of lakes, and of course, Calaveras Big Trees State Park, which is where giant sequoia trees were first discovered.
Residents in the area primarily work in outdoor-related industries, such as construction engineering, recreational tourism, agricultural management, and forestry and fire protection.
One last interesting tidbit about the county is that each year it hosts a frog-jumping contest during its county fair. The contest spawned from a short story entitled, “The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County,” which was written by the famous author, Mark Twain.
The Calaveras County Courthouse is listed on the U.S. National Register of Historical Places, meaning the federal government has preserved it as an official historical site. Located in San Andreas, California, the courthouse was built in 1867 and used to contain a single courtroom, a jail, and the sheriff’s office. The jail is famous for holding a notorious California highwayman, nicknamed Black Bart, while he was awaiting trial.
Although the old courthouse building has since been transformed into a tourist attraction, the Calaveras County Museum, the new one still sits in San Andreas and was constructed in 1966. It no longer houses a jail or sheriff’s department, but it has been separated into the following court divisions:
- Civil and criminal;
- Traffic and infractions;
- Family law;
- Juvenile court;
- Probate; and
- Small claims court.
Earlier in 2020, a County Superior Court Judge denied a group of Calaveras residents’ request for an injunction to restrict a county ordinance for commercial cannabis operations. In denying the injunction, the Judge found that the county’s ordinance was more beneficial than harmful to the community since it would create jobs and increase tax revenues for the county.
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