Monday, October 12, 2009

Shingle Springs CA

(Jan)a stamping millThe Placerville Elks Club, in the suburb of Shingle Springs, has been our base for the last several days as we have roamed gold country in central California.  The Elks Club here has 8 lovely sites with hook-ups and nice fellow RV neighbors whom we’ve shared Happy Hour with.  Our first stop locally was the Marshall Gold Discovery State Park near Coloma.  It is the site where James Marshall discovered gold in the tailings of the sawmill that he was building with partner John Sutter. With a replica saw mill, gold mining tools and machinery, a museum and many of the original buildings, it was a very interesting place to recapture the feel of the 1849 gold rush.

Chuck’s grandmother’s family, G William Vandementthe Vandemans came to Iowa from Ohio and Indiana.  Another branch of the family traveled on to Amador County here in California.  While they came to dig gold, we came to dig up family history info at the local library and in the pioneer cemeteries here. The cemetery at Amador City was particularly interesting as there were several stories placed around the grounds.  We did find the grave of G. William Vandement in Pine Grove. Jacob, his father, was a successful prospector and became part owner of several mines.  The men worked the mines to a level of 60 feet and Mr Vandement cleared $11,000 according to a 1901 publication.

Chuck in the Pine Grove Cemetery.  This is where we found the grave and head stone for Mr Vandement.
002 Click on the picture to enlarge and read early Amador City tales.
One of the Band Organs at Sutter Creek.
This organ, made in Germany, is just a year old and was purchased for $20,000. 

013 While traveling through the countryside we stumbled onto a Band Organ Rally on the streets of Sutter Creek.  It was a charming town to roam through with it’s original 1850 era downtown. We thoroughly enjoyed the music and talking to the organ owners.




092Jan and her brother RonJohn, Ron and Scarlet

Today we headed over to Pleasant Hill to visit with my brother Ron.  He and son John had just returned from a 16 mile bike ride.  Ron has been mountain biking for years and John competes through his High School and a California bike club. We had a great day visiting and sharing a wonderful meal with the two of them and Ron’s friend, Scarlet.


Dean and Judy Sheeley said...

Looks like great fun poking around in those old towns. Glad you are having a good visit with your brother.

Nancy said...

Glad to hear you found some more of the Vandemans. Sounds like a pleasant time making family connections, past and present.

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