Ever visited a museum inside an early 1800s courthouse? Well, as one of the oldest standing courthouse buildings in Georgia, the Dahlonega Gold Museum feels like 2 historical features in one. In fact, this restored courthouse, established in 1836, has been labeled a State Historic Site by the State of Georgia and even features trace amounts of gold in its bricks!
When visiting the gold museum — a great reminder of America’s first major gold rush and a supporter of the annual Gold Rush Days event — you’ll see gold nuggets, rarities, gold mining equipment, and a film detailing the history of the mint. There’s also a gift shop with cool souvenirs to remember your Blue Ridge Mountain vacation.
Gold Mining in Northeast Georgia
Panning for gold drew a lot of people to the Northeastern part of Georgia in the early 1800s. Prospectors poured into the Cherokee Nation within the North Georgia Mountains to find riches…and many did. Georgia’s mining history swiftly came to an end, however, when gold became increasingly difficult to find in the early 1840s. So, many gold miners moved out west to participate in the California Gold Rush. The Dahlonega Gold Museum north of Atlanta is a great place to learn more about the history of Georgia during the gold rush days!
Inside the Dahlonega Gold Museum
Start things off with a glance at the history sign that explains the origin of Dahlonega from the Cherokee word Talonega, meaning golden. Enter the family-friendly historic site — aka the Old Lumpkin County Courthouse — to find a tour guide that will happily take you around the Dahlonega Gold Museum and share interesting tales along the way. You can also watch a film that talks about the history of the mint, where they turned gold nuggets into gold coins.
Within the gold museum, there’s a 5+ ounce gold nugget — that’s a hefty chunk of change! Completed rare gold coin collections can be found as well. Pretty much anything to do with gold panning, mining activity, You’ll come across traditional gold mining gear and even a hydraulic cannon and nozzle that was used to blast the mountainside in search of treasured gold. And you can see the original judge’s chambers.
After completing the tour, head over to the Dahlonega Gold Museum Gift Shop which features all kinds of trinkets and souvenirs. Grab something to decorate your home, find a pair of earrings for your partner, or buy a book to learn more about North Georgia and its gold roots.
Mon-Sat — 9:00 a.m. – 4:45 p.m.
Sun — 10:00 a.m. – 4:45 p.m.
Major Holidays (Thanksgiving, Christmas & New Year’s Day) — Closed
Adult (18-61) — $8.50
Senior (62+) — $8
Youth (7-17) — $6
Child (6 and under) — FREE
Note: Group rates and tours are available upon request with advance notice.
Dahlonega Gold Museum State Historic Site
1 Public Square
Dahlonega, GA 30533
Golden Cabins in North Georgia
Live like a gold miner at a classic log cabin in the Blue Ridge Mountains with all the modern conveniences you appreciate when you opt to stay with Georgia Cabins for YOU. Family vacations, trips with friends, and group getaways need a comfortable place to kick back, relax, and recharge. Our cabins feature nice amenities and homey conveniences to keep everyone happy.
After walking through the museum, shopping downtown, sightseeing, sipping local brews, hiking in the Chattahoochee National Forest, visiting Appalachian wineries, or mining for gems with the kids, return to your cabin retreat to take it easy. Soak in the steamy hot tub, ready by a crackling fireplace, roast marshmallows around the firepit, enjoy a picnic by the Toccoa River, or take in the mountain views from the rockers. Many cabins also boast game tables, like pool or air hockey, big screen TVs, a fully equipped kitchen, and high speed Wi-Fi! Book your memorable mountain stay online or at 1.800.580.5524 today.
The Dahlonega Gold Museum is a treasure trove of history that’s waiting for YOU on your next Blue Ridge vacation.