Isaac Roop was a frontier settler in California and Nevada during the 1850s and 60s. He founded the city of Susanville, California, and also acted as the de facto governor of the Territory of Nevada in 1859, two years before the Territory was recognized by the federal government. In 1861 James Nye became the real territorial governor; after this usurpation of his powers Roop served as a territorial legislator.
Isaac Roop was born March 13, 1822 in Carrol County, Maryland. He married his tutor, Nancy Gardner, on December 24, 1840. He was devastated by her loss ten years later when she died of typhoid fever on June 20, 1850 and became widowed with two sons, John and Isaiah, as well as a daughter Susan. Possibly motivated by grief or desperation, he pulled up stakes for California that same year and tried to rebuild his life. In 1851 William Nobles started taking settlers over a route through the Sierra Nevadas passing through the Honey Lake valley. Among these settlers included the 29 year old Isaac Roop and his family. In 1853 after nearly pulling his life back together, he was only to have it upset by a tragic fire. It was then that Roop retreated to the Sierra Nevadas and to Honey Lake, where he concentrated on his own backcountry holdings and nearly single-handedly erected the burg of Rooptown which he would later name for his daughter Susan. In September 1859, Isaac Newton Roop became the first provisional territorial governor of the territory of Nevada. At the time, Susanville was thought to be in Nevada, not in California. Isaac was to be sworn in and become governor in the winter of 1859 in the town of Genoa, Nevada. Roop lived in the contested Roop County, Nevada. After Roop County's dissolution in 1865 Roop returned to Susanville. There, he became Lassen County's district attorney for two terms and stayed in the town that he had built and loved until his death in 1869. His daughter Susan resided in the town as well until her own death in 1921, and both were buried in the town's cemetery. There is a charming mural depicting father and daughter in downtown Susanville.
- Butler, James Thomas. "Isaac Roop". High Desert Press, Janesville, CA. 1994
- With Curry's Compliments
Some text excerpted from Wikipedia's Isaac Roop page.