- The Ansel Adams Gallery
- Carlo M. De Ferrari Archive
- Columbia State Historic Park
- Groveland Yosemite Gateway Museum
- Railtown 1897 State Historic Park
- Stanislaus National Forest
- Tuolumne City Memorial Museum
- Tuolumne County Historical Society
- Tuolumne County Library
Photo Gallery (.mov)
Although not technically in Tuolumne County, but in Yosemite National Park, the Ansel Adams Gallery is a favorite destination for those travelling through the county. The Ansel Adams Gallery has been in business under the same family ownership since 1902. What started as a painter’s studio is now a destination for photographers and aficionados of Ansel Adams worldwide. Matthew Adams, grandson of Ansel Adams and president of the company, is part of the fourth generation to be running the business and is a specialist in the work of Ansel Adams.
2 South Green Street
Sonora, CA 95370
Phone: (209) 536-1163
The archive is named in honor of Carlo M. De Ferrari, a third generation Tuolumne County native son and "Official Historian of Tuolumne County," a title bestowed in 1972 by the Tuolumne County Board of Supervisors in recognition of his extensive knowledge of local history and his dedication to its preservation.
The governing body of the Carlo M. De Ferrari Archive is the Tuolumne County Board of Supervisors. The county archivist, who is appointed by the Board of Supervisors, oversees general administration of the archive. The Records and Archive Coordinator supervises daily operations. All records accepted for preservation in the archive must have an historical connection to official county governmental business. Volunteers from the Tuolumne County Historical Society and the Tuolumne County Genealogical Society accession records. The archive is largely dependent on volunteers to perform its mission.
11255 Jackson Street
Columbia, CA 95310
Phone: (209) 588-9128
The park was once known as the "Gem of the Southern Mines." Between the 1850s and 1870s over one billion dollars in gold (at today's value) was mined in the area. For a time, Columbia was the second largest city in California.
Unlike many other settlements that disappeared due to fire, vandalism and time, Columbia survived. It was never completely deserted. In 1945 the State Legislature made the site a State Historic Park in order to preserve a typical Gold Rush town, an example of one of the most colorful eras in American history.
Visitors can taste hand-dipped chocolates, a superior cup of coffee, savor fine dining, family fare or purchase picnic provisions. Stagecoach rides are available, season and weather permitting.
There's also the chance to relax at one of two comfortable hotels, listen to music in historic saloons, or take in a performances at the Fallon Theatre.
Visitors can make a candle or purchase Columbia soap, wooden toys, old fashion clothes, or dress-up for a photograph.
Other highlights include taking a walk to the two-story brick schoolhouse and cemetery overlooking town, or hiking the one-mile nature trail where mule deer and wild flowers may be seen.
18990 Highway 120
Groveland, CA 95321
Phone: (209) 962-0300
Located on one of the major thoroughfares leading to Yosemite National Park, Groveland is on Highway 120 in Tuolumne County. The Yosemite Gateway Museum includes exhibits on the Gray Family, the Cassaretto Family, Priest Station, Longfellow Mill, Laveroni Sawmill, Native Plants, Three Generations of Rangers, Bower Cave, Woodworking tools, Old baskets and bottles, Owls, California Black Bears, and the Hetch Hetchy Railroad.
P.O. Box 1250
Jamestown, CA 95327
Phone: (209) 984-3953
Located in Jamestown, in the heart of California's Gold Country about 100 miles southeast of Sacramento, Railtown 1897 State Historic Park (SHP) is home to the Historic Jamestown Shops and Roundhouse—an intact and still-functioning steam locomotive repair and maintenance facility, portions of which date back to 1897. This one-of-a-kind attraction combines industrial heritage and railroad history with the lore of Hollywood’s film industry. The Railtown 1897 Interpretive Center, the authentic roundhouse and shops, and the Depot Store (a railroad specialty gift shop) are among the Park’s unique year-round offerings.
The Railtown 1897 SHP complex includes an authentic railroad roundhouse with operating turntable, functional blacksmithing area, and belt-driven machine shop. Guided Roundhouse Tours are available daily at this unique facility in which locomotives and cars are inspected, repaired, and rebuilt—just as they have been for the past century! The complex includes related historic structures and Hollywood "props," plus a large picnic area, Depot Store, and Interpretive Center.
Known as "The Movie Railroad," Railtown's survival has been aided by the film industry. The first known filming was in 1919, for a silent serial called "The Red Glove." Railtown 1897 and its historic locomotives and railroad cars have appeared in more than 200 films, television productions, and commercials.
Still a popular Hollywood location site today, Railtown 1897's most famous locomotive, "Movie Star" No. 3, has been called "perhaps the most widely seen locomotive in the world." The Virginian (first sound motion picture filmed outside a sound studio), the western classic High Noon, and Clint Eastwood’s Unforgiven were all filmed here. Movie crews also produced the railroad sequences in Back to the Future Part III at Railtown. TV credits include "Death Valley Days" (with Ronald Reagan) and "Petticoat Junction."
Railtown 1897 SHP is presently on the State Parks Closure List.
The Stanislaus National Forest (Forest) encompasses 898,099 acres on the western slope of the Sierra Nevada; California's snowcapped mountain range that flanks the Great Central Valley. Located between Lake Tahoe and Yosemite, the Forest landscape is a continuum of natural and scenic beauty that defines the Sierra. Amid soaring crests, sparkling mountain lakes, towering forests, and canyons carved by cool rushing rivers, visitors discover connections with nature and the spirit of the Sierra Nevada. A mere two-hour drive from the Great Central Valley and three hours from the San Francisco Bay Area, makes the Forest a very popular destination place.
The Forest has four Ranger Districts divided along three highway corridors: route 120 to the south (Groveland District), Route 108 along the middle fork of the Stanislaus River (Mi-Wok and Summit Ranger Districts), and Route 4 to the north (Calaveras Ranger District). Highway 4 is a designated Scenic Byway, Highways 108 and 120 have the potential to become designated. Each highway corridor represents a unique interpretive and education opportunity from giant sequoias to wild rivers.
P.O. Box 1174
Tuolumne, CA 95379
Phone: (209) 928-3516
The mission of the Tuolumne City Memorial Museum is to perpetuate the memory of all peoples who have lived in that part of Tuolumne County, known at various times as Summersville, Carters, and Tuolumne Township.
Exhibits include: Agricultural Heritage; Dr. Reid; East Belt Mines of Tuolumne; Education; Family Bibles; Miwok Culture; Town with Three Names; West Side Lumber Company; West Side Railroad; Bourland Trestle; West Side Trail; A History of Tuolumne; Gibbs Family; Speakers Garage; Summers Family and Addie Carter's Things.
The Tuolumne County Historical Society was established in 1956 to preserve, protect and perpetuate the colorful history of one of California's original counties. The Tuolumne County Historical Society, the Tuolumne County Museum and History Center and the Tuolumne County Genealogical Society provide resources to serve and inform scholars, local residents and visitors with information on this area's rich history.
The Tuolumne County History Collection is a large volume of historical information consisting of the memories and images of Tuolumne Gold Rush through modern times. Tuolumne County's historical resources are highlighted in this site to encourage you to visit our facilities and to participate in and enjoy our rich history.
By 1960, the Tuolumne County jail, built in 1866, was obsolete and a new jail was constructed one block north. At the time, the Tuolumne County Museum and History Collection was located in the Veterans Memorial Hall on Washington Street in downtown Sonora. Carlo De Ferrari, County Clerk, was assigned the administrative responsibility of the museum after the retirement of Ruth Ann Newport. The Board of Directors, of the newly formed Tuolumne County Historical Society, discussed the need for expanding exhibit and storage space. At the request of the Society, the Tuolumne County Board of Supervisors designated the old jail as the Tuolumne County Museum and the Society became stewards of the Tuolumne County History Collection.
The Society also publishes the informative CHISPA, the Quarterly of the Tuolumne County Historical Society, and has an active book-publishing program.
480 Greenley Road
Sonora, CA 95370
Phone: (209) 533-1468
Fax: (209) 533-0936
The Tuolumne County Library is headquartered in Sonora with branch libraries in Groveland, Tuolumne, and Twain Harte. The system also has a mobile library.