Timbuctoo - A once-thriving mining town
Crumpled ruins of a gold rush town
Located amidst the gold-laden gravel beds of the ancient Yuba River, Timbuctoo was named for a former slave who found one of the region’s larger nuggets (history is mum as to whether he was able to keep it). As miners followed the rich ‘blue gravel’ inland, the town grew until, in 1859, Timbuctoo was “the largest and most thriving locality in the township.” As the hydraulic mining operations moved up the ravine towards Smartsville and Sucker Flat, and the Timbuctoo diggings played out, the town declined, and, following the collapse of the hydraulic mining industry in 1884, what remained of Timbuctoo collapsed as well. Today only a small graveyard and the crumbled foundations of the Wells Fargo building remain.