Empire Mine State Historic Park
Empire Cottage in the Empire Mine State Historic Park.
Empire Mine State Historic Park is a state-protected mine and park in the Sierra Nevada Mountains in Grass Valley, California. Since 1975 California State Parks has administered and maintained the mine as a historic site. The mine is described as "one of the oldest, largest, deepest, longest and richest gold mines in California." Between 1850 and its closure in 1956, the Empire Mine produced 5.8 million ounces of gold, extracted from 367 miles of underground passages.
On weekends from May through October, volunteers dressed in Edwardian clothing give living history tours of the Bourn Cottage, the 1890s country estate home of William Bourn, Jr., and the Mineyard, with demonstrations of mine operations. The park's museum contains a scale model of the underground workings of the Empire/Star mine complex, exhibits of ore samples from local mines, a recreated Assay Office and a collection of minerals.
The park is about 60 miles northeast of Sacramento.