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Sutter Creek - Amador County, California

The town takes its name from the creek which the creek takes its name from John A. Sutter. Unable to stop the tide of gold-seekers flowing over and destroying his lands, Sutter decided to follow the call of gold, trying in vain to recoup what the Gold Rush had taken. He arrived here in 1848 with a band of Kanakas and Indians, and upon finding a likely spot began mining along the creek. A small settlement began to grow, centered around a cloth tent where the miners met on rainy Sundays when they couldn't go to Drytown or Jackson. The place eventually took the name of its most prominent citizen, and was called Sutter's Creek, Sutter, Sutterville, and finally, plain old Sutter Creek.

But Sutter wasn't a miner, and many of the other miners in the area didn't much approve of his using servants to dig for gold. He left the area a short while later, returning with his men to Sutter's Fort. He never mined again. The camp appeared to be on the verge of disappearing by 1850, due to the poor placers and the better diggings to be found elsewhere. This changed dramatically in 1851 when rich quartz deposits were discovered near the camp. With the advent of quartz mining, Sutter Creek became firmly established as an important quartz mining center as well as a foundry center and supply point for the neighboring quartz mines and towns.

Return to Our Sutter Creek Tour

Old Jackson Photos

Information, photographs courtesy of the Amador County Archives, The Historical Marker Database, The Chronicling America Database, and Larry Cenotto, Amador County's Historian