Breaking News
Home » Features » History Mystery #80: Narbo
Map of Narbo, CA
What do you know about Narbo?

History Mystery #80: Narbo

By Don Grove

In the late 1800s, Narbo was a mining town located on Quartz Mountain. As the stories go, it was created by a French company, with a French orphanage as one of their biggest investors. Some stories say that the town had fine homes and a mansion residence for the company president. Others say that there was one large building there, a three story French castle-looking structure that was actually a hotel, a place to bring French people to wine and dine them, to get them to invest in the mine. According to this account, the rest of the town was shack housing for the miners.

The company built one of the largest stamp mills in the state, rumored to have been between fifty and eighty stamps. They built either a flume or a canal, depending on the story, from Willow Creek to Narbo to provide water. Unfortunately, they barely had the mill operating when Miller and Lux Cattle Company, who claimed the water rights in the area, shut the water off and filed an injunction against the mine forcing them to cease operation.

E Clampus Vitus is considering placing a monument nearby, but we would like more information. What was actually located there…a hotel? A palatial mansion? A deluxe town or ramshackle miner’s shacks? Are there any photographs still in existence? Was this a legitimate mine, or was it just a money grabbing scheme? Does anyone have any stories about Narbo? Any help would be thoroughly appreciated.

A map of the area is included to help in our search.


Thanks to those who left comments on Facebook.  

Dawn Lee Rock hammer.

Susie Dooman Could it be hung as a chalk balance. Dave has one similar to this.

Will Champion The last train to Daulton was in March of 1953. It was a special passenger trip. The silos were still standing at the time.

Bob Edmiston common body shop tool

Glenn R. Crosson Body man tool or metal worker hammer




Leave a Reply

Sierra News Online

Sierra News Online