locked gate in front of an abandoned mine shafe

Bechtler Mint Field Report

A small park just north of Rutherfordton, NC and 1/4 mile off of 221. The park is really small, but has plenty of parking and one picnic shelter. There are also a few benches with nice views of the mountains.

The park may be small, but the site is significant in it’s connection to the North Carolina gold rush.

park with iron gate around drop off where mine shaft is
Bechtler Mint Site Historic Park with mountains in the background

Almost in the center of the park is what is reputed to be a mine once owned by Christopher Bechtler. He was a watchmaker and gunsmith who minted the first $1 gold coin in America near the current park. Signs at the park give you some history of the mint and the mine.

After leaving the mine, I traveled back to Rutherfordton to visit the Bechtler Home Museum, unfortunately it was closed when I arrived – looking it up, the home is only open on Saturdays. The museum is in the home once owned by Christopher Bechtler. It’s on West 6th street right across from the Presbyterian Church. Parking is limited, and I ended up parking in the church lot.

Final Thoughts

Like I said, this is a small park, but if you’re in area, it’s probably worth a stop. Especially if you’re planning on visiting the museum in town as well. I wouldn’t suggest making a special trip just for this, though.