Those driving by the Red Barn Museum in San Andreas this past week may have noticed a new addition towering above the museum grounds.
On June 12, Calaveras County Historical Society (CCHS) Board Member Dave Sanders and two hired-hands installed a 30-foot-tall headframe for the up-and-coming mining exhibit.
James Mann and Rick Dietrich were hired to build and install the headframe, while Sanders volunteered his time to oversee the project.
“It took us three 12-hour days to get this built,” Sanders said. “We couldn’t have gotten two better guys, and I basically helped them. I showed them pictures of what I wanted, and we talked about it a lot, and I was right in there working with them the whole time.”
Sender’s Truss in Mountain Ranch provided a crane to set the headframe in place.
“Sender’s has been really, really good to us,” Sanders said.
Sanders designed the mining exhibit with his wife, Eden, who passed away eight years ago. He has been working on it in his spare time over the last 10 years.
“We had all of these artifacts laying around, and I thought, ‘Well, instead of laying out here, they need to be utilized; they need to be used,’” he said. “So, this is what we’ve come up with.”
Once complete, the exhibit will include a shaft elevator, a horse-drawn whim, a hoist, ore carts, ore tracks, a blower, an air compressor, a jaw crusher and a stamp mill, among other artifacts. Much of the mining equipment is already on site.
Sanders said that he was pleased with how the headframe turned out.
“I’m pretty happy with it,” he said. “I couldn’t have asked for anything better.”