Frequently Asked Questions

Castle Tours

Can I tour of the castle?

Yes. Guided tours of Preston Castle are offered every first and third Saturday of every month from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. We also offer special tours for schools, photography, and other private groups. For more information on all tours, visit Tours .

Facts About the Castle

When was the castle built?

The castle was built between 1890 and 1894.  Visit History for more details.

What is the size of the castle?

The total square footage of the castle is 46,000 square feet which includes the basement and four floors as well as an annex with a basement.

Who owns the Preston Castle?

The Preston Castle is currently owned by the State of California . The Preston Castle Foundation has a 55-year lease of the castle from the state.  The Preston Castle Foundation is working to transfer ownership of the castle to the city of Ione to allow for local, community management of the facility.

When was the castle used as a correctional institute for minors?

Wards attended the Preston School of Industry at Preston Castle from 1894 until 1960 when new facilities for the school were completed. For more information on the history of Preston Castle, visit History.

Is the castle a historic landmark?

Yes, the Preston Castle is a California State Historical Landmark – #867 and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places – NPS-75000422.

Why should the castle be restored?

Being over 100 years old, the Preston Castle overflows with craftsmanship both inside and out that is rarely, if ever, seen in modern buildings. Preservation of the castle means saving a historically significant California landmark. The speed at which the Preston Castle can be recovered also depends upon the support of its members and volunteers, and the longer the Castle goes without repair, the more history California loses forever.

How much will the repairs of the Preston Castle cost?

The full cost is unknown at this time. The Foundation is working to obtain grants that will help repair it one project at a time—repair the roof, relace missing floors, establish electricity, etc.

What are the future plans for use of the Preston Castle?

Because the building is so large, the castle will probably be a multi-purpose building. Possible uses might include be a senior center, restaurant, theater, museum, retail shops or office space. The Foundation's goal is for the building to be self-sustaining

The Preston Castle Foundation

What is the Preston Castle Foundation?

The Preston Castle Foundation is made of a Board of Directors and members. For more information on the Board of Directors, visit Meet the Board.

What is the mission of the Preston Castle Foundation?

The purpose of the Preston Castle Foundation is to restore, preserve and provide utilization of an important California landmark.


What are the goals of the Preston Castle Foundation?

The Preston Castle Foundation’s goals:

• Securing adequate funding through various sources to restore and preserve the castle.

• Creating on-going awareness, recognition and support of the restoration and preservation projects and the Preston Castle Foundation through planned events and public relations activities.

Supporting the Castle

How do I become a member of the Preston Castle Foundation?

To become a member of the Preston Castle Foundation, visit Membership.  Your membership donation is tax deductible.

What type of support does the Preston Castle Foundation need?

There are several ways you can help support the Preston Castle Foundation's mission of restoring this important piece of Californian culture. Aside from becoming a member, the Foundation is thankful for the many generous donations of funds, physical labor, skills and equipment contributions. Learn more about donations or volunteering online.

If you know of a way in which you or someone you know could help the Foundation, please send us an email to info@prestoncastle.com or call us at (209) 256-3623. Your donations are tax deductible.