Knight Foundry never significantly modernized; the original machinery is still powered by patented Knight Water Motors via a system of line shafts and belt drives. In addition to a full complement of tools and machinery, no other site preserves an unbroken line of nearly extinct foundry skills down to the present. These skills associated with the foundry craft are another unique element of the site’s historic fabric.

And Knight Foundry isn’t just an old foundry: Samuel N. Knight (1838-1913) and the other skilled artisans who worked there were a major, albeit unsung, source of technological invention, innovation and engineering for early California industry. Knight Foundry truly is an endangered national treasure.

Please enjoy the gallery of images below. And do help us preserve the Knight Foundry.

Below is a set of Knight Foundry photos by Amy Heiden.

Below is a set of Knight Foundry photos by Ed Roppo.

Below is a set of slides that present early hydro-power development in Amador County. Samuel Knight and Knight Foundry were involved in the first hydro plant in Amador County – it was located in Sutter Creek beginning in 1893/94. Hydro quickly evolved to development on the Mokelumne River and those plants were eventually purchased by PG&E in 1904.