In its idyllic setting of black oaks, Ponderosa pines and lush meadows, Oregon House Farms believes that when small family ranchers are able to be sustainable on their land, the threat of land development is minimized.
Oregon House Farms, also home to High Sierra Beef, is located in the North Yuba foothills. High Sierra Beef was created to support small family ranchers from Yuba, Nevada, Placer, Sierra and El Dorado counties. Reverence for the land is pivotal to the farms operation.
Owner, Jenny Cavaliere, has lived in Oregon House, California for over twenty-two years and has cultivated the land not only for beef production, but also for poultry, pasture-raised eggs, honey, and a bountiful garden of fresh vegetables and fruits. Recently, the 63-acre Oregon House Farms was awarded organic certification through the California Certified Organic Farms Association. Part of the land is a Certified Family Tree Farm, as well as a riparian restoration of Indiana Creek and five-acre lake. The riparian restoration was part of a California Forestry Incentive Program(CFIP) Grant, awarded to restore and replant parts of the farm that were destroyed by the Williams Fire in 1997. The "Tree Farm" was restored with a massive dead brush removal and replanting of over 2,500 Ponderosa pines and Douglas fir.
Oregon House Farms has been a cattle ranch since the time of the California gold mining era. Cattle were abundant in the early 1900s when open range was part of the landscape. On the northeast corner of the farm, a stage-stop barn stood where gold miners from Dobbins and Oregon House traveled to bring their gold to assay offices in Oroville and Marysville. The stage-stop barn was destroyed in a fire in 1937. The settlers that remained are cattle ranchers to this day.
Oregon House was also known as the party town of the foothills. Miners would congregate on the weekends from the upper foothills of Brownsville, Challenge. Forbestown and Frenchtown to come to the Oregon House Hotel for entertainment and good times.
Many Native American Maidu grinding rocks are located on the property, which are recorded with the State of California. The Maidu Indians would live in the fertile valley of Marysville in the summer months and migrate north to the Yuba foothills in the winter where they would grind acorns from the black oaks for flour to make their bread. Indian culture is preserved and honored by Maidu descendants here. Their baskets are still woven of willow and redbud, and acorns are still a staple of their diet. Today, Oregon House and the neighboring town of Dobbins has the largest population of Maidu residents in California.