Miners’ Bend Historic Gold Mining Park, located at the south end of Sutter Creek, is Amador County’s newest attraction. The park displays equipment that was used in county gold mines of the past and some from the present. Actual artifacts used in the extraction of gold have been donated by local Amador County mines and other generous donors.
The organization responsible for the creation of Miners’ Bend is the Sutter Creek Community Benefit Foundation, which was created in 2012. The project has been spearheaded by foundation chairman Frank Cunha, along with assistance from Ed Arata, Robin Peters and Louis Boitano, who have secured the historic mining equipment.
The SCCBF, in partnership with the City of Sutter Creek, transformed a weed-filled lot at the end of town into a beautiful and historic park that visitors and locals alike will enjoy for many generations to come. Two years ago, work began by clearing the ground. On June 1st 2015, at the ground breaking ceremony, the community was asked to help pick a name. The winning name, “Miners’ Bend,” is most appropriate since this is the site of an original miners’ encampment.
The park’s centerpiece is a five-head stamp mill built in 1882 at Sutter Creek’s Knight Foundry. A replica of a head frame with winch, motor, mine shaft and ore cars sits next to the park entrance. The three bronze statues by artist Louis DeMartino were commissioned by PacBell in 1976. They were displayed at the San Francisco headquarters until 2010. Later, they were salvaged by local realtor Tom Blackman who stored them while searching for a suitable location. Upon seeing the work at Miners’ Bend, he graciously donated them to the SCCBF.
The new park has informative plaques, picnic benches, trees and hand-stacked rock walls lining the park. A Commemorative Walkway is constructed of bricks engraved with the names of families, pets, businesses, events and more. Additional bricks can still be purchased (contact sccbf.org) and added to the walkway. Funds raised will be used for future projects at the park and elsewhere in Sutter Creek.