About Us

1854: Where It All Began…

 

Twenty Mile House was built in the remote Sierra Nevada mountains in 1854 as a stagecoach stop and trading post. The towns of Beckworth and Quincy lie 20 miles away on either side of the aptly named Twenty Mile House, and it became a frequent stop on what teamsters at the time called the “Reno-Quincy” run. 

 

Eventually becoming a dual-purpose trading post and hotel, Twenty Mile House was a place where travelers could take refuge from the elements, sell goods, and refresh their horses. Eventually, the property became the heart of the town of Cromberg. 

 

1880s: A General Store, a Post Office & More

 

By 1880, brothers William and Gerhard Langhorst purchased Twenty Mile House and made the first expansion of the property. The brothers added the general store that is the centerpiece of the property to this day. The general store at Twenty Mile House was built with a handmade counter, wood stove, and cowhide chairs. Gerhard became sole owner of the property several years later and continued to expand by applying for a federal post office. He maintained his position as postmaster of Cromberg for over three decades, until his death in 1919. 

 

Prior to his death, Langhorst  grew the property even more, with a two-story addition of 10 hotel rooms adjoining the general store. No traveler was ever turned away from the lodging at Twenty Mile House. Meals were served all day and all were welcome to spend time in the parlor on the ground floor of the house. A favorite meal of the travelers in those days was roast bear, and while we strive to maintain the authenticity of the early Twenty Mile House, some things have certainly changed.

 

Early 1900s: The Train is Coming

 

The Western Pacific Railroad rolled into town for the first time in 1909, bringing new travelers to the small town of Cromberg and Twenty Mile House. In 1912, three men put guns to Langhorst’s head and robbed the post office of $200, the equivalent of about $5,000 today. By 1924, the property changed hands once again, to a man named John Hussey. 

 


 

 

 Mid-twentieth Century: A House of Treasures

 

In 1945, Twenty Mile House was sold to Mathew E. Magill and his wife who had made the journey to Cromberg by way of train with their family. Magill’s son Henry would eventually make Twenty Mile House his lifelong home. Henry left quite an estate behind in 1985, some of his treasure now taking up residence in the Smithsonian and Peabody museums.

 

Present Day: B&B-Turned-Premier-Wedding-Venue

 

Later in 1985, new owners took up residence in the Twenty Mile House, and they are the same family who owns and operates the property today. Rob and Barbara Gage summered in Cromberg, taking time away from their day-to-day lives in Laguna Beach to enjoy the solitude of Twenty Mile House. In 1991, Barbara moved to Cromberg full time to turn the sprawling 200-acre asset into a bed & breakfast, creating the foundation for the secluded retreat that is Twenty Mile House today. By 2009 Barbara’s son Kevin and his wife Karen Steele moved in with their 2-year-old baby girl, and have transformed the estate into the best destination wedding venue near Lake Tahoe and in Northern California. 

 

What couples are saying about Twenty Mile House