Museum Goes International: Voice of America, Washington D.C., filmed a program on the New Mark Twain Exhibit and the Angels Camp Museum for Asian broadcast to all Chinese speaking peoples — e.g. Singapore, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Mainland China.
A letter written by Mark Twain to a young lady in Angels Camp.
January 15th, 2010, by Greg Kristapovich, Sierra Mountain Times
Simply driving by, one cannot perceive just how large the museum complex is! In fact, the Angels Camp Museum is comprised of four separate buildings, teeming with artifacts and overflowing with Mother Lode history! A huge barn contains mining artifacts, while another is a “garage” for 29 antique carriages! The main building, easily visible from the street, is crammed with fascinating antiques and relics—and even has a mini theatre where folks can watch “Jump”, the official “Frogumentary” about Angels Camp’s Frog Jump Jubilee! Curator Bob Rogers recently took this reporter on a two-hour tour of the museum; and one word can describe the place: Incredible! “A lot of people don’t realize it, but this property is part of the Angels Mine!” Rogers revealed. “The claim goes back to the 1850’s! The reason Angels Camp was such a center of hard-rock (gold imbedded quartz ore) mining—and there were nine mines between Bret Harte High School and Angels Creek—is because the three veins of Mother Lode came together here! We have two of them under this property!
The Mother Lode is the most complex geological area in the world and there are 200 miles of mining tunnels and shafts under Angels Camp” Rogers exclaimed, while also discussing the gold-mining exploits of the Henry Angel, James Carson and Dan and John Murphy! “We also have one of the largest and most diverse collections of mining equipment that exists in the Mother Lode!” Rogers stated with pride, adding “I’ve seen visitors to our museum spend as much as an entire day here!” There are videos and vintage photographs ready to view, and lots of artifacts displayed that reflect early pioneer life – including fixtures from the original post office in Angels Camp, and typewriters; the type that Mark Twain, himself, would have used! “And we have one of the finest patent medicine bottle collections! It’s just amazing! It rivals the Smithsonian!” Rogers opined. Indeed, there is a lot to see at the museum!
The Angels Camp Museum started in 1851, and under Roger’s oversight, continues to expand magnificently! “We’re going to build an1850s mining camp in the back! We’ve got three acres, that’s what’s interesting!” Rogers exclaimed. “Incidentally, we also own the old Altaville School, up the street – which is the oldest surviving schoolhouse in California!” He noted, adding that they are working on a new Mark Twain exhibit! The Angels Camp Museum is located at 753 South Main Street, (right across from Rodz Grille), and is open Saturday and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and admission is a very modest $4 (and worth every penny!) Children 6 -16 pay only a dollar! This museum could very well be the “crown jewel of the Mother Lode”! Check it out sometime!
Estimated Completion: September 2010
Please note: the Angels Camp Museum is seeking photos, rope, saddles and cattle chute donations for this exhibit.
Estimated Completion: September 2010
Geology Exhibit – Phase 1
The Carriage House
Expanded and enhanced interpretation of one of the finest and largest carriage, buggy, and wagon collections in California. Upgrade of the building facilities allows year-round use of the Carriage House for Museum programs and rental purposes, generating additional revenue for the advancement and growth of the Museum.
This expanded, interactive exhibit chronicles the Gold Rush era. Exhibit will include various aspects of gold mining, from creek bed panning to hard rock mining and a replica 1850s Mining Camp with overnight programs for school groups, youth groups, and families.
Expected Completion: November 2010
Enjoy this vintage movie clip from the 1950s of “The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County”.
Famous frog-jumping contest memorialized in Mark Twain’s short story “The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County.” Newsreel story presenting the 100th anniversary of the contest.
This movie is part of the collection: Prelinger Archives
Producer: Universal-International Newsreel
A new exhibit opened May 1 at the Angels Camp Museum that shines a light on how author Mark Twain used stories he heard and events he witnessed during his 88 days living in the Mother Lode to build a career that made him America’s most famous novelist and humorist in the late Nineteenth Century and early 20th Century.
A special exhibit created in recognition of this world famous author whose stories have given Angels Camp a unique and lasting identity. This exhibit has been developed in cooperation with the distinguished Mark Twain Boyhood Museum, Hannibal Missouri, the U.C. Berkeley Bancroft Library, and leading Mark Twain scholar, Dr. Gregg Camfield at U.C. Merced.