Thousands Sign Petition to Keep "Old Hangtown"

by Placerville Newswire / Mar 02, 2021 / comments

(Cris Alarcon, InEDC,19:29, 3/2/21)

On March 1, 2021 Sue Taylor shared a link to the group: "Friends of Historic Hangtown."

In part she wrote: ... 

"show that we would like to keep our history.  Please sign to save the title of Old Hangtown.  (please do not donate money - it just goes to  
There is becoming a serious campaign to remove anything "Hangtown" based on ignorance of the fact that the miners, after hanging 3 murderers after a jury trial ruled over by a judge, named the town “Hangtown” as a deterrent to lawlessness caused by the huge influx of people and the lawlessness during the Gold Rush.   Hangtown was a place that would not tolerate the crimes that were taking place in and around other mining towns. 

A copy of your message goes to the City Council.  

Please let them know that you don't want to see our history erased."

The Link posted goes to a Change.Org page with a Petition that is forwarded to the Placerville City Council.

The Petition named "Placerville: KEEP 'Old Hangtown' on our Welcome sign" and was started by Sean Yeske.
The petition reads:

"The undersigned people of Placerville, CA "Old Hangtown" and supporters, wish to impress upon our city council that we want to keep our town's historic name "Old Hangtown" on our Welcome sign. 

In this age of rampant political correctness and concocted victimhood, the new trend is to remove, destroy, tear down or burn historical monuments in order to rewrite or forget history to please a small but vocal minority.  Old Hangtown's most notable history is that of the California Gold Rush, where Placerville, then known as Dry Diggin's, earned its new nickname after, according to the local museum,the hanging of three outlaws after they rode through town firing their guns. The name stuck and is an indelible part of local and state history.  In actuality, a large amount of the draw of our town is the history and the preservation of it.  Look on the walls of just about any store or restaurant downtown and see photos from over a hundred years ago of the very street you are on and how much, but also how little, it has changed.

A recent petition by a resident of a nearby town incorrectly states that the Old Hangtown's name came by way of racially charged hangings, which it didn't, and that the "Hanged Dummy" on the front of the Hangman's Tree Historical Spot is black, which it isn't, as anyone can see by googling "Placerville Ca Hangman's Tree" and looking at the photos.  They also state that the name "Old Hangtown" is outdated and offensive, but is only offensive to those who read malicious intent into something that is purely historical.  Their petition is nothing short of a step to erase a piece of history.

We wish to preserve our history, "warts and all" for all proceeding generations. History - local, national and global - should never be subject to "cleansing" by those to whom it is uncomfortable.  History is to be preserved, especially that history which is uncomfortable, for future generations to learn and build upon, and to prevent mistakes and poor decisions in the future.  

Please do not give in to the tensions of the moment by removing a piece of history that may never be reclaimed."