California State Indian Museum

In the shadow of Sutter’s Fort sits the small but lovely California State Indian Museum.  The museum was created in 1940 and tells the story of many of the Indian tribes of California.  It highlights more than 60 indigenous groups who lived in our great state long before Mr. Sutter brought his Fort to the area and long before the Gold Rush encouraged waves of people to come out West.

Highlights of the museum are an impressive grouping of baskets, an 18 foot Yurok Redwood Canoe, a large number of beautiful photographs of Indigenous peoples in native outfits during dances or traditional activities, and detailed handmade clothing.

The relationship between California and the local Indian tribes has been a complicated one over time.  Disease brought by Europeans, forced movement, slaughter, and destruction of the local environment have changed the face of indigenous people forever.  This museum tells the story of California Indian heritage through physical items, clothing, photographs, landscaping, local events, and music and dance. It is a lovely reminder of the pride and history of the first Californians.  I only wish the museum were bigger and housed even more beautiful artifacts because I know there is much more to see.

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Rattlesnake!

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Take note of the feathers weaved in to the spectacular smaller baskets.

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This thing is HUGE and must weigh an enormous amount.

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Not sure what these berries are. I can’t say I ever remember seeing them in the area but they were beautiful.

Sutter’s Fort – Sacramento, California

The little one and I got out of the house recently and visited the Sacramento landmark of Sutter’s Fort.  This adobe fort was built in 1840, early in Sacramento’s history, for the purposes of trade by John Sutter with the coerced permission of the local Nisenan Indians and randomly with the help of Hawaiian laborers.  Sutter was granted Mexican citizenship in 1840 and the Land Grant for the area in exchange for keeping local Indian tribes “in order.” It was closed shortly after gold was discovered in Coloma sparking the 49r Gold Rush.

The fort has been lovingly restored and the California State Parks service does a great job displaying the period with detailed rooms depicting each of the trades and functions of the fort; Carpenter shop, Millstone, Gunsmith, Blacksmith, Guard Room, Kitchen, Bakery, and Weaving Rooms. The Fort sits on a beautifully maintained garden neighboring the California State Indian Museum.

It has always amazed me that my fellow Sacramentans restored, saved, and preserved this special spot because it is surrounded by period houses, hospital high rises, vibrant bars, all in the heart of downtown Sacramento. It is prime real estate as they say.

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Local Girl Scout Groups dress up in period costume for their visit. (I remember doing that not so many years ago!)

Old Town Auburn Doors

Happy Thursday everyone.  Meet the doors of Old Town Auburn, California.  Auburn is another great city which has its roots in the Gold Rush.  It has changed a lot over the years and is growing regularly.  It is known for its vibrant Old Town, its mandarins, and its wine believe it or not.  I took some inspiration from Norm 2.0 and snapped some colorful photos of its doors for you.

 

For other Gold Country Posts please click here!

Gold Country Drive – Barbed Wire

When I was a kid my Grandfather had a decoration he hung on the wall with various kinds and shapes of Barbed Wire affixed to it.  I was always interested and had a veiled respect for this display because it could hurt me if I touched it and it also seemed strange that a man would display what seemed like garbage on the wall.  Well, now that I am a little older and realize that the barbed wire isn’t going to jump off the display and cut me I find it a fascinating thing to photograph.  I ran across some while I took my little Gold Country drive the other day.  I hope you enjoy the different perspective and the good excuse to use my macro lens. 

 

Gold Country Drive – Doors & Windows Edition

The California Gold Country boasts lots of beautiful shop-filled main streets in various states of revitalization or disrepair.  But, one thing is for sure…no one wants to throw out a great old door or window with some personality.  Join me and get a feel for what its like to walk by the Gold Country main streets of the 1850s.  Do you have anything like this where you live?

Visit Norm 2.0 for other examples of greats Doors on Thursday!

For other posts in and around the gold country please click here.

 

 

Gold Country Drive – Melones Dam, Ca

It’s impossible to ignore the drought when driving over this massive bridge staring at the water marks from years before.  Thankfully we have received a decent amount of water here in Northern California, 130% of normal I am told so far.  But, still the brutal fact remains we need a lot more.  Spring flowers are starting to bloom and we still haven’t had enough water…

For other posts in and around the gold country please click here.

 

Gold Country Drives – Barns

During our little drive through the Gold Country it is easy to come across barn after barn after barn.  I stopped by and took a few photos of them hoping to give you a sense of the area.  I have always been fond of barns since we have had many of them through the years on properties homesteaded by my ancestors.  Here are a few we stumbled upon that make me wonder what might be inside of them.

Submitted as part of Jennifer’s One Word Photo Challenge.

For other posts in and around the Gold Country please click here.