John Blair

Born in Paisley Scotland in 1824, John Blair was the first of his family to arrive in El Dorado County in 1852. Shortly thereafter he acquired the Sportsman’s Hall, which with his brother James Blair, John expanded into a thriving inn along the busy Carson Rd. John and James soon acquitted thousands of acres of forestland throughout modern day Camino and Pollock Pines, established mills and founded the J & J Blair Lumber Company. For the next 100 years, the Blair name became synonymous with quality, integrity, and value in El Dorado County. Eventually, John and James Blair became two of Placerville’s most affluent and well-respected entrepreneurs. The first Blair lumberyard was located at the corner of Cedar Ravine and Main Streets. Additionally, the J. & J. Blair Lumber Company expanded into mining interests, gravel production, railroads, general building materials, as well as soaps, tallow, and hides. Known locally as the “genial Scotchman”, John Blair was very civic minded and highly influential in the development and improvement of early Placerville and its surrounds. His home on Cedar Ravine Rd–built during the Civil War–still stands and is known today as the Judge Thompson House (named for a later owner).  There he and wife, Jane Blair, raised their 6 children.