• Humble Beginnings

William Carson came to Humboldt County to discover gold.
He found his fortune in Redwood!

In 1855 he shipped the first cargo of redwood lumber from Humboldt Bay to San Francisco, where previously only spruce and fir timber had been shipped. Over the next decade he was involved in numerous business activities including his partnership with John Dolbeer.

William Carson was born in the Canadian province of New Brunswick. He joined the gold rush to California in 1849 to 1850. He purchased a pack of horses and proceeded to the gold fields in Trinity County, along the Trinity River. However, the endeavor proved unsuccessful and by 1854 Mr. Carson was operating a mill in Humboldt County.

In 1864 William Carson married Sarah Wilson in San Francisco. Sarah was from his home town in New brunswick, Canada. They had four children, John Milton, Carlotta, Charles Sumner, and William Wilson. The Carsons owned a home in Bucksport where they lived in a small house. In 1872, they moved to a farmhouse on the bluff at the head of Second Street near the Carson and Dolbeer's Bay Mill. The Carson Family lived in this home until sometime after October 1885, when they moved into their new Mansion. In later years, a new mill office was built on the location of the Carson's small Second Street home. The home was moved to its present location on Third Street and is now operated as a Bed and Breakfast Inn.


William Carson’s first Eureka home on Second Street which originally overlooked the bluff.

Mrs. Carson was a modest woman and is said to have enjoyed her simple farmhouse home on the bluff on Second Street more than the Mansion. Sarah Carson was a well respected woman in her community. The local newspaper obituaries praised her as a woman "of good heart and ready spirit in charitable undertakings."