DWIGHT DUTSCHKE, grand president of the Native Sons, center, speaks at the dedication of a historical marker presented by Placerville Parlor #9 of the Native Sons of the Golden West on June 8. The historical marker plaque will mark the site of the original 1861 J. Skinner Winery, now the home of the Cameron Park Nursery on Cameron Park Drive at Green Valley Road in Cameron Park. Democrat photo by Pat Dollins
THE HISTORICAL PLAQUE dedicated Saturday June 8 at the site of the original 1861 J. Skinner Winery in Cameron Park. Democrat photo by Pat Dollins
THE PLAQUE reads "'James Skinner Winery & Distillery.' Founded by Scottish gold minder James Skinner in 1861 in the community that became known as Skinners. Strategically placed on the Pony Express Trail, the J. Skinner Native Wine and Brandy Co. was one of the first commercial vineyards in the country and by 1883, one of the largest, with a stone wine cellar capable of storing 15,000 gallons of wine. The multi-story distillery was located on the opposite side of Green Valley Road and was a very modern plant for the time, with a boiler room powered by a six-horse engine. The winery operated until the early years of the 20th century."
Democrat photo by Pat Dollins
DECENDENTS OF THE original J. Skinner family at the dedication ceremony Mike Skinner, left, his wife Carey and son Kevin. Democrat photo by Pat Dollins