The Museum is located at 1333 Butte House Road, Yuba City. Hours are Tuesday through
Friday 9-5, Saturday & Sunday 12-4. The Museum has a number of permanent exhibits
on the Maidu Indians, early Sutter County settlers, agriculture, the Sutter Buttes, and
school life. Smaller displays include transportation, women, Lola Montez, local
photographs, the 1955 flood, the stereoscope, a Baldwin player piano and the old
Meridian Bridge. Some special items of interest are the restored Yuba Ball Tractor,
John Sutter's Gun, and Lola Montez's dressing table.
The Exhibits combine artifacts, photographs and interpretive labels that provide a
self-guided tour. Group tours are available Tuesday through Friday by appointment only.
Special Exhibits in the Main Hall change every three to four months. They include
in-house exhibits with a local focus as well as traveling exhibits with a broader
context focusing on California and Western history.
Becoming American - Permanent Exhibit
In 2007, the Community Memorial Museum of Sutter County began work on its
long-awaited new Multi-Cultural Wing to tell the history and stories of our
area’s diverse peoples. In 2011, the first permanent exhibit to be completed
was that of the Japanese-American community, as a result of collaboration with
the Japanese American Citizens League. March 2012 marked the opening of the
Punjabi and South Asian American exhibit, with the Museum working closely with
the Punjabi-American Heritage Society. We look forward to the completion of
the Chinese-American exhibit also in 2012. The Museum is working together
with the Alliance for Hispanic Advancement to create an exhibit to tell the
stories of our Hispanic community. The history of several other ethnic groups
will ultimately be included in the Multi-Cultural wing.
The “Becoming American” museum project was conceived by a group of individuals
interested in documenting and preserving the migration history of Punjabis and
Southeast Asians to the United States, the Yuba-Sutter area in particular. The
history of the pioneers is one of trials and tribulations and a commitment to
success in a land so foreign from the one they left behind. Punjabi / South
Asian pioneers left India in pursuit of a better life for themselves and their
families. Some came by ship while others came by air...most not having a clue
as to what lay ahead. They faced many difficulties due to language and cultural
differences and encountered rampant discrimination. Their story is one of
determination and survival. So compelling is their history that we found it
necessary to showcase these stories so that they would not be lost forever.
It is our hope that the museum exhibit as well as the book, “Becoming American”,
will bring their stories to life in a way that they will be remembered for
generations to come. Their lives may seem ordinary to folks today, but they
have left a legacy that is nothing short of extra-ordinary. They paved the way
for future generations to achieve the “American Dream”. It is with honor we
recognize and celebrate their achievements through the “Becoming American”
museum project and book.
In times of drought like we are now experiencing, our relationship with water is equally intense. Nature is cyclical,
and, as living beings of the earth, we are also moving and changing, experiencing our own disasters and enduring and
recovering. This exhibit celebrates the triumph of the human spirit over the ebbs and flows of life.
Guest exhibit curator and artist Inger Price of Olivehurst says, “As in nature, life is complicated. I believe there
is much to learn about ourselves by observing how nature solves problems. The resilience and strength of the human
spirit is evident – how we help each other and manage to survive is very inspiring to me. Somehow, we make it through
the toughest times and emerge stronger, better people. Interestingly enough, after a flood, the soil becomes more
fertile. It changes for the better.”
All images by Philip Venable.
Click on an image below to view enlarged version
Our Virtual Exhibit
web site will take
you on a virtual tour through historic photographs of Sutter County and Marysville.
This is an Adobe Acrobat PDF file.
You can download a free PDF reader from Adobe.