It all started several hundred yards upstream from today’s town site.  Jose Marie Amador, a wealthy California rancher, mined along this nameless creek in 1848-1849.   There, gold outcroppings were discovered on both sides of the creek.   The Original or Little Amador Mine and the Spring Hill Mine were probably the Country first gold mines.  Soon, the creek, the town and a new county carried Amador’s name.

As the “easy” gold was mined out on the upper part of the creek, mining and encampments gradually moved to “South Amadore” where French Gulch flows into the creek.  This is the current site of Amador City.  The Keystone Mine, organized in 1853, was the city’s most famous gold mine and a major reason why the town grew.  In those days there were an estimated four to six thousand residents in Amador City!  Before closing in 1942, an estimated $24,000,000 in gold had been mined.

Amador City’s oldest structure, built around 1855, is the center portion of the Amador Hotel.  Up Main Street is the stone Fleehart Building (now the Whitney Museum)was the Wells Fargo Building and dates from the 1860’s. See below for information on the Museum and please stop by next time you’re in town!


14170 Old Hwy 49 (Main St)

Amador City, CA

Open Friday-Sunday 12:00-4:00

The Amador Whitney Museum exists to promote an interest in the history and culture of the Mother Lode region among both residents and visitors. It will do this with particular emphasis on the contributions and experiences of women who have lived in the Mother Lode, from the distant past to the present day.