Founded in 1957, the Mariposa Museum & History Center is administered as a non-profit corporation and is truly a labor of love for the dedicated volunteers who, over the years, have helped to create the museum you see today. We have been dubbed “The Best Little Museum of Its Size West of the Mississippi” by the Smithsonian Institution – high praise, indeed! Our museum’s mission is to authentically portray the people and lifestyle of Mariposa County from the Native American and Spanish periods to the California Gold Rush and through the early 1900s. Original documents and artifacts, gold displays, artwork, photos, and Native American baskets, implements, and beadwork are just a few items to enjoy when you visit us.
Our outdoor displays boast the only operational 5-stamp gold ore mill in California, a fully functional Blacksmith Shop and Broom-making Shop, in addition to other significant pieces of mining equipment. Furthermore, two historical Mariposa buildings have been conveyed to our museum grounds for your viewing pleasure.
Inside exhibits include an extensive Miwok Indian display, an interior view of a miner’s cabin, an authentic Mother Lode saloon, a one-room schoolhouse, and furnishings belonging to former Mariposa County resident – and the West’s most famous explorer – John C. Fremont, and his wife, Jessie.
The museum also houses a research library for those interested in historical and genealogical research (by appointment only, please). Docents are always available to answer questions, while group tours, gold panning lessons, and stamp mill demonstrations can be arranged with advance notice.
ENTRANCE FEES: Adults – $5.00 Children under 18 – Free
HOURS OF OPERATION: 10 am – 4 pm Open daily, year round. Call ahead for snow closures.