NO. 28 MAIDEN'S GRAVE - It is said that in 1850 a young girl, Rachel Melton, native of Iowa, was accompanying her parents on a journey West via covered wagon train when she became violently ill. Camp was made and every effort was made to cure her, as she was the joy of the party, but she passed away and was buried on this spot.
Location: On State Hwy 88 (P.M. 61.3), 10.5 mi W of Kirkwood
NO. 29 VOLCANO - The spot was discovered in 1848 by Colonel Stevenson's men, who mined Soldiers Gulch in 1849. By 1853 the flats and gulches swarmed with men who named them picturesquely. Hydraulic operations, begun in 1855, brought thousands of fortune seekers to form a town of 17 hotels, a library, a theater, and courts of quick justice. During the Civil War, Volcano's gold served the Union - Volcano Blues smuggled the cannon 'Old Abe' in by hearse to quell rebels.
Location: Intersection of Main and Consolation Sts, Volcano
NO. 30 LANCHA PLANA - Lancha Plana (Flat Boat) was well settled by 1850 due to the hydraulic mining operations in the extensive gravel beds along the Mokelumne River. The Amador Dispatch newspaper was born here in 1856. Poverty Bar, Camp Opra, Copper Center, and Put's Bar were 'suburbs' of the larger town.
Location: North shore of Camanche Reservoir, 1 mi W of County Line Bridge on Lancha Plana Buena Vista Rd, 6.0 mi S of Buena Vista
NO. 31 DRYTOWN - Founded in 1848, this is the oldest town and first in which gold was discovered in Amador County. Its venerable town hall and other picturesque structures remain. The town was not 'dry,' as the name implies-it once contained 26 saloons.
Location: On State Hwy 49 (P.M. 13. 7), 0.2 mi N of Drytown
NO. 34 PIONEER HALL - The Order of Native Daughters of the Golden West was organized on these premises, the site of the Pioneer Hall, on September 11, 1886.
Location: 113 Main St, Jackson
NO. 35 OLETA (OLD FIDDLETOWN) - Settled by Missourians in 1849, Fiddletown was a trading center for American, Loafer, and French Flats, Lone Hill, and other rich mining camps. Called Fiddletown because residents "were always fiddling," the settlement became Oleta in 1878 but the original name was later restored. Bret Harte added to the community's fame in An Episode of Fiddletown.
Location: South side of street from Dr. Yee's Chinese Herb Shop, Fiddletown
NO. 36 MIDDLE BAR - Site of gold rush town on the Mokelumne River, now inundated by Pardee Reservoir at certain times of the year.
Location: 2.8 mi S of State Hwy 49 (P.M. 2.5) on Middle Bar Rd at Mokelumne River, 4.5 mi S of Jackson
NO. 37 CLINTON - Clinton was the center of a placer mining community during the 1850s and of quartz mining as late as the 1880s. This town once decided Amador County elections as its votes were always counted last.
Location: Intersection of E Clinton and Clinton Rd, 1.0 mi SE of State Hwy 88, 3.2 mi SW of Pine Grove
NO. 38 IRISHTOWN - This was an important stopping place for emigrants on their way to the southern mines. The first white settlers on this spot found it a 'city of wigwams,' and hundreds of mortars in the rocks testify that this was a favorite Indian camping ground.
Location: On State Hwy 88 (P.M. 20.8) at Pine Grove Wieland Rd, 2.2 mi SW of Pine Grove
NO. 39 BUTTE STORE - This is the only structure remaining of Butte City, prosperous mining town of the 1850s. As early as 1854 Xavier Benoist was conducting a store and bakery in this building. Later Ginocchio had a merchandise business here.
Location: On State Hwy 49 (P.M. 1.4), 2.6 mi S of Jackson
NO. 40 KIRKWOOD'S - Resort, stage station, and post office were originally built by Zack Kirkwood in 1864. When Alpine County was formed from Amador County, the division left the barn and milkhouse in Alpine, while the Alpine-El Dorado line went directly through the barroom of the inn.
Location: On State Hwy 88 (P.M. 71.8), Kirkwood
NO. 41 BIG BAR - The Mokelumne River was mined at this point in 1848. Established in 1849, the Whale Boat Ferry operated until the first bridge was built, about 1852.
Location: On State Hwy 49 (P.M. 0.0) at county line, 4.0 mi S of Jackson
NO. 118 JACKSON GATE - Jackson Gate, on the north fork of Jackson Creek, takes its name from a fissure in a reef of rock that crosses the creek. In 1850 about 500 miners worked here and the first mining ditch in the county was dug here - its water sold for $1 per inch.
Location: On N Main St, 1.3 mi NE of Jackson
NO. 322 SUTTER CREEK - This town was named after John A. Sutter, who came to the region in 1846, and was the first to mine the locality in 1848. There was little activity at Sutter Creek until 1851, when quartz gold was discovered. In 1932 the Central Eureka mine, discovered in 1869, had reached the 2,300-foot level. By 1939, it was the best-paying mine at Sutter Creek.
Location: Veteran's Memorial Hall, Main and Badger Sts, Sutter Creek
NO. 470 PLYMOUTH TRADING POST - This building, constructed entirely of brick, was built by Joe Williams in 1857. In 1873 the many small mines of the area were combined to become Plymouth Consolidated, and this building became the new company's office and commissary.
Location: On Main St, between Mill and Mineral Sts, next to Wells Fargo Bank, Plymouth
NO. 506 THE COMMUNITY METHODIST CHURCH OF IONE - The cornerstone was laid in 1862 and the church, constructed of locally fired brick, was completed in 1866. Dedicated as the Ione City Centenary Church and later popularly known as the Cathedral of the Mother Lode, this church was the first to serve the people in the area.
Location: 150 W Marlette, Ione
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places: NPS-77000287
NO. 662 OLD EMIGRANT ROAD - Here the Old Emigrant Road began a long loop around the Silver Lake basin, reaching an elevation of 9,640 feet at one place. This difficult portion of the road was used by thousands of vehicles from 1848 to 1863, when it was superseded by a route approximating the present highway.
Location: On State Hwy 88 (P.M. 63.1) at Mud Lake Rd, 8. 7 mi W of Kirkwood
NO. 715 SITE OF FIRST AMATEUR ASTRONOMICAL OBSERVATORY OF RECORD IN CALIFORNIA - On the knoll behind this marker George Madeira built the first amateur astronomical observatory of record in California. It was there that he discovered the Great Comet of 1861 with a three-inch refractor telescope.
NO. 762 D'AGOSTINI WINERY - D'Agostini Winery was started in 1856 by Adam Uhlinger, a Swiss immigrant. The original wine cellar, with walls made from rock quarried from nearby hills, hand-hewn beams, and oak casks, is part of the present winery - some of its original vines are still in production.
Location: On Plymouth-Shenandoah Rd, 7.2 mi NE of Plymouth
NO. 786 ARGONAUT AND KENNEDY MINES - Argonaut Mine, discovered 1850, and Kennedy Mine, discovered 1856, played dramatic roles in the economic development of California, producing $105,268,760 in gold. Kennedy Mine has a vertical shaft of 5,912 feet, the deepest in the United States. The Argonaut was the scene of the Mother Lode's most tragic mine disaster-on August 27, 1922, 48 miners were trapped in a fire at the 3,500-foot level - few survived. Both mines closed in 1942.
Location: W roadside rest, State Hwy 49 (P.M. 5.6), 1.6 mi N of Jackson
NO. 788 D. STEWART CO. STORE - This general merchandise store built by Daniel Stewart in 1856 was the first building erected in lone Valley from nearby Muletown brick. Once known as 'Bed-Bug' and 'Freeze Out,' Ione was an important supply center on the main road to the Mother Lode and Southern Mines.
Location: 18 E Main St, lone
NO. 865 SITE OF JACKSON'S PIONEER JEWISH SYNAGOGUE - On September 18, 1857, Congregation B'nai Israel of Jackson dedicated on this site the first synagogue in the Mother Lode. High holy day worship continued until 1869 when the larger Masonic Hall was used to accommodate the congregation. The wooden structure then served as a schoolhouse until 1888. Relocated onto a nearby lot, it became a private dwelling, and was razed in 1948.
Location: SE corner of Church and Main Sts, Jackson
NO. 867 PRESTON CASTLE - The 'Castle,' built in 1890-1894, is the most significant example of Romanesque Revival architecture in the Mother Lode. It was built to house the Preston School of Industry, established by the State Legislature as a progressive action toward rehabilitating, rather than simply imprisoning, juvenile offenders. Doors of the 120-room 'Castle' closed in 1960 after new facilities were completed.
Location: Preston School of Industry, Waterman Rd - plaque located 0.9 miles N of site on State Hwy 104 (P.M. 4.3), 1 mi N of lone
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places: NPS-75000422
NO. 1001 CALIFORNIA NATIVE AMERICAN CEREMONIAL ROUNDHOUSES (THEMATIC), CHAW SE' ROUNDHOUSE - In a village, the roundhouse served as the center of ceremonial and social life. Constructed in 1974, the Chaw se' roundhouse continues this tradition. With its door facing the east, towards the rising sun, four large oaks are the focal point of this sixty-foot-in-diameter structure. Today ceremonial roundhouses are the most significant architectural manifestation of the continuing Miwok spiritual heritage.
Location: Chaw Se Indian Grinding Rock State Historic Park., 14881 Pine Grove/Volcano Rd, Pine Grove
NO. 1007 KNIGHT FOUNDRY - Knight Foundry was established in 1873 to supply heavy equipment and repair facilities to the gold mines and timber industry of the Mother Lode. Samuel N. Knight developed a high speed, cast iron water wheel which was a forerunner of the Pelton Wheel design. Knight Wheels were used in some of the first hydroelectric plants in California, Utah, and Oregon. This site is the last water powered foundry and machine shop in California. A 42-inch Knight Wheel drives the main line shaft, with smaller water motors powering other machines.
Location: 81 Eureka St, Sutter Creek
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places: NPS-75000423