Rough and Ready is a census-designated place in Nevada County, California, United States. It is located west of Grass Valley, California, approximately 62 miles (100 km) from Sacramento. The population was 963 at the 2010 census.
The early residents of Rough and Ready, California, were prepared to get down and dirty for their independence. Named after a mining company with the same moniker, the town—with a current population of about 1581—was the first to secede from the Union and become its own “republic” in 1850 as a protest against mining taxes, prohibition mandates, and laws that weren’t enforced. Though their rebellion was laughably short-lived (the town rejoined the United States three months later), its residents still pay homage to Rough and Ready’s spirited past with a celebration on the last Saturday in June.
What little is left of the town is located on the Rough and Ready Highway. It was bypassed by State Route 20 in the mid-1980s. Among the oldest buildings are the blacksmith shop (1850s), the Odd Fellows Hall (1854), and the Old Toll House.
The town of Rough and Ready is honored as a California Historical Landmark
Rough and Ready today is home to hundreds of residents who take pride in the culture, history and sustainability of their community. With social and community activities centered around the Chamber of Commerce, the Community Hall and the Volunteer Fire Department, Rough and Ready is a popular place to live or visit.
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