Anthony House Under Lake Wildwood
Anthony House was a stagecoach stop on the way from Marysville to the covered bridge at Bridgeport and then on to Virginia City. It stood on old Pleasant Valley Road before a dam was built and this part of the valley filled to form Lake Wildwood. Its exact location was a mystery (Pleasant Valley Road was moved to cross Deer Creek at the dam) until recently. The location is confirmed by an old photo in possession of the great, great grandson of the owners, Frank and Grace Davey. This video slideshow was made from two photos, the one from Mike Davey and another taken on September 13, 2009 from the top of the stairs to the children's swim area near the pavilion in Commodore Park. You will see that the hills in the background of both photos match almost exactly as one photo dissolves into the other and back again. Camera location of the modern photo is farther from Anthony House than for the old photo because the shoreline is the best available location not under water.
Anthony House was built in 1849 on the north side of Deer Creek. It had 6 rooms upstairs, a restaurant downstairs, and served as a hotel, post office, livery stable and stage stop. The property was up for sale in 1852. Subsequent owners included William Henry Davey, Nevada County Supervisor 1908-1916, and later his son, Frank Davey. The original home burned down in 1876 but was quickly rebuilt. Post office and stage stop operations continued to 1906 when the post office was moved to Smartsville, just up the road in Yuba County. Thereafter, declining traffic on the Marysville-Virginia City trade route led to farming and cattle raising as the main use of the property. By 1970 when Boise-Cascade began development of this area, the property had fallen into disrepair and the house was burned down as a training exercise by the Penn Valley Fire Department. Construction of Anthony Dam here on Deer Creek submerged any remains of this historic site under Lake Wildwood. Photograph of Anthony House and Ranch, Courtesy of the Davey Family. (This paragraph courtesy of Dick Alexander, volunteer at the South Yuba River State Park.)