February 27, 2017
February 27, 1888. Chico, according to a directory, was blessed. Not only was this town of 6,000 "pleasantly situated" on Chico Creek and the Southern Pacific Railroad, but Chico was "the most prosperous trading and manufacturing town in Butte County, besides being surrounded by one of the richest agricultural regions in the state [and] rich-paying gold mines." It boasted flour mills, a foundry, a carriage manufactory, gas, electric, and water works, the Sierra Lumber Company, 2 newspapers, 2 banks, 7 churches, 7 schools, a public library, and an opera house. A state teachers' college was also in the "metropolis of the great county of Butte." All relied on the services of longtime Wells Fargo's employees, Charles Faulkner, also cashier for the Bank of Butte County, Gilbert L. Barnham, and deliveryman F.L. Chandler. Since then, town founder John Bidwell, brewer Charles Croissant, and the others listed in 1888 have become treasured memories, but Chico State University and Wells Fargo still serve Chico.