Bechtler site open house begins Friday

Oct. 23, 2012 @ 09:00 AM


The original mint site of Christopher Bechtler – the man who minted America’s first one dollar gold coin and reinvented commerce in the Southeast – is now poised for its grand opening on Friday, Oct. 26 at 12:30 p.m. After weeks of renovations, the site has been transformed from abandoned hole in the middle of a former timber company tract to a beautiful landing with interpretative signage, which is only the beginning.  

Immediately following the grand opening of the mint site is the unveiling of the original Bechtler coin press on loan to Rutherford County by the American Numismatic Society. 

The presentation will take place at Bechtler’s historic 1838 house, now fashioned into a museum and visitor center for this calendar year in celebration of the Town of Rutherfordton’s 225th anniversary.  The house is located at 130 West 6th Street in Rutherfordton. 

“The history of America’s first gold rush and the Bechtler Mint is one of the unique and distinctive experiences that can be found only in North Carolina,” said Lynn Davis Minges, assistant secretary of Tourism, Marketing, and Global Branding for North Carolina. “Visitors are looking for those authentic stories and deeper connections, so it is vital that we celebrate this history and allow visitors to take hold of it through programs and attractions like this.”

The mint site is located at 342 Gilboa Church Road in Rutherfordton.

The public is welcome and admission is free for both events.  For more information about the Bechtler gold history and legacy to American and North Carolina history, please visit

Helping prepare for the site’s grand opening were H&R Landscaping & Grading, In Focus Graphics, Knight Strategies – Landscape Architect, Lynn Padgett Designs, Odom Engineering, and Ornamentals & Finer Wielding, Inc.  Funding for the Bechtler Mint Site project was made possible by Rutherford County and Rutherford County Tourism Development Authority.