Coloma is considered something of a ghost town because civic buildings such as the jail have been abandoned and left to decay, and other buildings from its boom era (1847-1852) have been converted into museums and other historical displays. The tailrace of Sutter's Mill remains, along with a nearby reconstruction. In reality the meaningfulness of the township of Coloma has dissipated as residents who live in the wider Coloma Valley area generally share a community spirit. The town currently has approximately 300 inhabitants. The local economy is predominately agriculture and tourism. Of particular note is the rafting industry as the South Fork American River is one of the most popular white water trips in North America. The name comes from the original natives' (Nisenan Native Americans) name for the valley Coloma is in: Cullumah, meaning "beautiful." Coloma is on the South Fork American River that runs through the valley and was built on the original Native American village of Koloma.
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