Timbuctoo, California


Timbuktu Marker

Location: Yuba County, California

“Established in 1855—during the California Gold Rush—Timbuctoo was the largest town in eastern Yuba County. Thriving during the era of hydraulic mining, this Sierra Nevada town of 1,200 pioneers contained a church, a theater, stores, hotels, saloons, a Wells Fargo office, and the Stewart Brothers store. The town of Timbuctoo got its name from a nearby ravine that was used for hydraulic mining as early as 1850; the ravine was named Timbuctoo after an African American who was one of the first miners of the area. Extensive hydraulic mining tailings remain throughout the region as evidence of its lively pioneer past.Today, very little remains of Timbuctoo. Most of its buildings have long been destroyed by fire. The old Wells Fargo & Stewart Brothers store is the only building left standing…..” Sierra Nevada Tourism (6/25/16)

The original medieval town of Timbuktu was located in what is now the West African country of Mali.

Resources on Timbuktu, Mali:

Ancient Manuscripts from the Desert Libraries of Timbuktu.” Library of Congress Exhibition. July 25, 2003. Accessed October 8, 2010.

Hunwick, John. and Alida Jay Boye. The Hidden Treasures of Timbuktu : Rediscovering Africa’s Literary Culture. Thames & Hudson, 2008.

Jeppie, Shamil and Souleymane Bachir Diagne. The Meanings of Timbuktu. Human Sciences, Research Council, 2008.

Kessler, Cristina. Trouble in Timbuktu.  Philomel Books, 2009.

Maseko, Zola. 
The Manuscripts of Timbuktu. California Newsreel, 2009.

Photo credit: Syd Whittle, 2006