Pioneer Museum

#6 Catch the 49er Spirit

Built by the Native Sons & Daughters of the Golden West and operated by the City of Oroville, this museum was built in 1932 as a replica of a 49er cabin. The original building has been enlarged to now hold 6,000 sq. ft. of historic treasures. Antique pianos, the original Oregon City School organ, a grand old clock from Bidwell Bar, an extensive hat collection (including an 1849 bonnet worn by a wagontrainer), beautifully elaborate women’s fans, antique dolls (including a doll from the Donner Party), a miner’s vest tailored to hold different size nuggets, and a handmade gold needle are just part of the holdings of the first room.

The Indian artifact display contains one of the largest arrowhead and basket collections in the area, and the Chinese exhibit features a rare tear jar.

One area is devoted to the life of Florence Danforth Boyle, the museum’s founder and Butte County Recorder in 1918. It will give you the 49er spirit!


To hear a narrative on this historic attraction, dial 530-539-3004 and press 107.

Pioneer Museum
2332 Montgomery Street
(530) 538-2497
Open: Fri-Sat-Sun. Noon-4p.m.
Closed: Dec. 15-Jan. 31
Admission: $2 Adults ($1.50/each for groups with 15 or more), children under 12 free


#7 Relive a Love Story

Lott Home 2009 011

C.F. Lott Home in Sank Park

A Victorian revival style structure, the C.F. Lott Home built in 1856 serves as a cultural repository for decorative art objects which are typical of the homes of Oroville’s pioneer families. The collection includes antique furnishings, paintings, rugs, textiles, clothes, silver, and glassware of the period 1849-1910. The tour retells a love story, including the surprise built into the fireplace.

The garden contains a profusion of flowers, including an outstanding hybrid rose area, and the park contains a lovely gazebo as well as many trees that show autumn color. Don’t miss the carriage house with Jess and Cornelia’s 1922 Buick. Portions of the property may be reserved for weddings and other private functions.

101To hear a narrative on this historic attraction, dial 530-539-3004 and press 101.

1067 Montgomery Street
(530) 538-2497 or (530) 538-2415
Home Hours: Sun-Mon & Fri. 11:30-3:30
Closed: Dec. 15-Jan. 31
Admission: Adults $3, Children under 12 free
Park Hours: Mon-Sat 9-9, Sun 9-8:30


#8 Know Another Culture

Oroville Chinese Temple & Garden

Built in 1863 to serve a community of 10,000 Chinese, this temple of treasures is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and also as a California Landmark. It was first opened to visitors during California’s 1949 Centennial.

It includes three chapels, with the main chapel, Liet Sheng Kong, serving as a place of worship for Taoism, Confucianism, and Buddhism.

In 1968, Tapestry Hall was added to display the extensive collection of embroidered tapestries, parade parasols, and other objects of beauty. A priceless collection of Chinese and American costumes is arranged to contrast the two cultures by decades from 1850 to 1930. Also see the rare threedimensional puppets from the Oroville Chinese Opera Theatre.

102Visitors won’t want to miss the garden, which is designed as a place for meditation and reflection and has plantings that originated in China; each is a symbol for a Taoist idea. The temple and garden are maintained by the Oroville Parks Department. To hear a narrative on this historic attraction, dial 530-539-3004 and press 102.

Oroville Chinese Temple & Garden
1500 Broderick St., 530-538-2496
Hours: Daily, Noon-4
Closed December 15-January 31
Admission: Adults $3, Children under 12 free, Tour groups and special rates

Ehmann Home

#10 See the House that Olives Built

Ehmann Home

Freda Ehmann, “Mother of the Ripe Olive Industry,” and her son, Edwin, built this Colonial Revival Craftsman home in 1911 after she’d perfected a curing process for ripe olives and had markets across the nation. Edwin served as mayor here from 1919-23.

Open for tours by appointment and on Saturdays from 11-3, the home features lovely wainscoting, hardwood floors, fireplaces, intricate stained glass windows, and antique furniture including a Chickering piano that came around the Horn. The home is available for weddings & other events.

BCHS Museum houses Ishi’s jailcell door, early gold scales, photographs, an amazingly detailed dollhouse, an Erle Stanley Gardner exhibit and many videos. BCHS hosts annual “Ishi Days” each May.

Research assistance and sale of books, Diggin’s (BCHS’ quarterly publication), and Ehmann olives are offered at the Archives.

Gifts are offered in all three venues, Main and 5th Streets.


To hear a narrative on this historic attraction, dial 530-539-3004 and press 105.

Ehmann Home
Lincoln at Robinson,
(530) 877-7436, (530) 533-5316
Open for tours Saturdays, 11-3

Butte County Historical Society Museum
1749 Spencer Ave.
(530) 533-9418,
Open: Fri. 9-12, Sat. 11-3

Butte County Historical Society Archives
2335 Baldwin Ave.
(530) 533-9418,
Open: Thurs.-Fri., 9-Noon


#31 Military History, Riverside Camping & Paint Ball at 1 Location

Dedicated to the appreciation and preservation of last century’s military history and memorabilia, the owners have been collecting for over 30 years.
This collection includes everything from a Browning M1917 Machine Gun (first introduced in 1917), an Antitank Gun (manufactured by Laudi during WWII), a rocket launcher (“Bazooka” of WWII), an English Civil Defense Air Raid Siren used to help Londoners reach the safety of bomb shelters, a Dutch Army Motorcycle (1955), to a Sidewinder Missile AIM-9E and an M60 Machine Gun developed for use in Viet Nam.

There are a number of military wagons plus an outstanding collection of WWII posters which were used to boost morale, sell war bonds, and fuel nationalism in the 1940’s.

Since you’ll need time to explore the many items on display, you may want to consider staying in the tree-shaded Campground here that is nestled on the banks of the Feather River. Fishing, tubing & kayaking trips originate here.

PaintBall is one of the nation’s fastest growing sports, and here you’ll find a series of fields within a master field for scenario games, as well as for “Speedball” and “Capture the Flag.”

Military Museum, Campground, & PaintBall at Surplus City
4514 Pacific Heights Rd.
(530) 534-9956


#35 12,000 Old Tools & Still Collecting

Opened in spring of 2006, this museum is the fulfillment of one man’s dream. Bud Bolt started collecting in 1957 as a way to get shop students to be more attentive. His idea was to show the students the difference between the unweildly old tools their grandfathers might have used and the modern ones. The boys did start paying more attention, and it also sparked, in Bud, a fascination for old tools that continues today.

All of the tools on display were manufactured during or prior to WWII with some going back to Roman and Egyptian times in 400 B.C. They include adjustable wrenches that measure from a small pair about four inches long to a giant 12-foot industrial wrench, and a hand-forged set of sockets made by a blacksmith and discovered by Bud in a junk store in Kalispell, Montana.

The museum is open 7 days a week, Mon-Sat 10:00 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. Sun. 11:45 – 3:45 p.m., and you’ll find it fascinating to listen to the stories that make the tools almost come alive!


To hear a narrative on this historic attraction, dial (530) 539-3004 and press 103.

Bolt’s Tool Museum
End of Safford Street between Oak & Pine Streets
(530) 538-2528, (530) 538-2415
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