Archive for the ‘Ghost Towns’ Category

Ghost Town a Day For 30 Days- Day #8 features Ironton, Colorado.

Ironton was one of the two major towns in the Red Mountain Mining District of the San Juan Mountains and is located between Ouray and Silverton. In its prime Ironton was a major shipping hub for the mines of the San Juans, and mining was done around Ironton as well in all directions. The town’s peak population was over one thousand and there were over one hundred buildings at Ironton in its heyday.

Ironton1908dpl

Ironton, early 1900s

IrontonAbt1900

Ironton, early 1900s

ironton4

Ironton today

ironton7

ironton8

Ironton dwindled in the early decades of the 20th Century, and is totally abandoned today.  Around a dozen structures, homes, shops, and out buildings remain at the Ironton site today tucked deep in a grove of dense aspen trees, hiding the old town from plain view. To find Ironton keep an eye open for the large rust-colored field of mine tailings on the left hand side of Highway 550 as you travel from Ouray to Silverton. There is a parking lot and trailhead for outdoor recreation at the tailings pile. If you keep a close eye out, you will find a rough road here that leads into the trees, a few hundred yards fown the road the buildings of Ironton will appear.

ironton1

ironton 128

ironton5

ironton2

ironton 078

ironton3

ironton6

 

Check Out My Book- Order Here!

MyBook

Day #7 of A Ghost Town a Day For 30 Days features La Liendre, New Mexico.

LaLSaloon

La Liendre Saloon early-1900s

The Spanish “La Liendre” translates roughly to “The Mosquito” in English and legend says this tiny village along the Gallinas River was named for the mosquitos that plagued the residents.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Ruins of the saloon in the previous photo

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

La Liendre is located roughly 20 miles southeast of Las Vegas, New Mexico in the stunning canyon country of the eastern New Mexico plains region. The small community began life under the name “Los Valles de San Antonio” around 1840. There was a Post Office intermittently at La Liendre between 1878 and 1942, as well as a church, saloon, and a number of stone and adobe dwellings.  Today La Liendre is a collection of crumbling walls, boards, debris, and around 20 foundations surrounded by beautiful views.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Check Out My Book- Click Here!

MyBook

Day # 6 of A Ghost Town a Day For 30 Days features Bluebird, a picturesque mining camp in Boulder County Colorado. Bluebrid requires a round-trip hike of 3 1/2 miles to reach, but the trek is well worth it.

Bluebird dates to the early 1870s when a rich silver vein rumored to assay at $6,000 per ton was discovered. Bluebird was an up-and-down mining camp until as recently as the 1950s when the veins finally played out. Parts of the 1966 film “Stagecoach”  starring Ann Margaret and Bing Crosby was filmed at Bluebird.

bluebird23

The centerpiece of Bluebrid is the 2-story bunkhouse

Today there is plenty to be seen at Bluebird- The mine workings, the stunning bunkhouse with its wooden porch, the toppled log remains of the earlier 1870s era bunkhouse, the stone and brick mine manager’s home, and most unusual for a 10,000 foot elevation setting- A stone-lined swimming pool with centrally located firepit used to heat the waters!  The rushing waters of Boulder Creek and stunning views in every direction are the icing on the cake at Bluebird.

bluebird25

Backside of the bunkhouse

bluebird26

The small, arched window was used by the camp bookkeeper distribute pay to the miners

bluebird5

Front door to the bunkhouse

bluebird20

Front porch/boardwalk of the bunkhouse

bluebird6

The collapsed remnants of the earlier-1870s era bunkhouse

bluebird21

bluebird32

A view south looking over the Bluebird camp

bluebird33

The mine manager’s house

bluebird34

Staircase leading into the seemingly out-of-place swimming pool

bluebird36

Swimming pool right outside the front door of the mine manager’s home

bluebird35

Central firepit inside the swimming pool used to heat the waters

bluebird31

Animal pens used for livestock kept at the Bluebird camp

bluebird28

Building near the entrance to the mine

bluebird29

Shed at the mine

blubird3

A chipmunk waves “hello” from the boardwalk at Bluebird

Thanks for visiting!

Check out my other ghost town blogs!

 

Check Out My Book- Click Here!

MyBook

 

 

Day #4 of A Ghost Town a Day For 30 Days takes us to a little known ghost town on the southern slope of Muddy Pass along Highway 40 in Colorado north of Kremmling. I have only found one reference to this place in my research, and it was identified as the Smole Lumber Camp which operated in the early decades of the 20th Century which faded into oblivion sometime around 1950. I wish I knew more, but there is no “more” to be found on the camp. If anyone knows the full story I’d love to hear it.

smole4

Smole Camp sits on the southern slope of Muddy Pass along Highway 40 north of Kremmling on private property, but it can be easily viewed and photographed from the shoulder of the road

smole7

There are two rows of buildings along a central “street” at the camp, a few other buildings lay on the outskirts of the main cluster at the site

smole9

These buildings are located on the southern side of the road dividing the camp

smole10

Buildings along the north end of the camp

smole11

A weather beaten chair stubbornly refuses to submit to time and the elements

smole1

A barn and what could be called the “fancy” house sit a few hundred yards south of the main camp, and likely belonged to the owner or site manager of the lumber company

smole6

Another view of the same structures

smole3

Barn building

smole13

smole8

Thanks for visiting!

Please give a “share” on your social media pages!

Check Out My Book Click Here!

MyBook

Colorado Ghost Town Guide Book- The Foothills Region

HG2

Colorado Ghost Town Guide- The High Rockies

HG3

 

Day #3 of “A Ghost Town a Day For 30 Days” features the little village of La Manga, New Mexico.

I discovered La Manga by accident while on a New Mexico road trip when I noticed a tiny (literally) church and a cluster of abandoned buildings on a hillside just outside of Las Vegas, New Mexico on the way to Glorieta Pass.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

La Manga, New Mexico

 

I pulled off the interstate and wound down a few side roads until I reached the spot. The miniature church I had seen from the distance was in fact, small in physical dimensions, it is actually about a 2/3 scale chapel, large enough for people to enter, but you’d have to stoop as the walls are short and the roof is low.  This is the Capilla de Santo Nino, or Chapel of Santo Nino- Santo Nino being the image of the child Jesus in the Roman Faith. This dimunitive chapel was puposely built on a small scale in honor of Santo Nino. I can not find any information on how old the chapel is, but it is still in use today, and there is a small graveyard on the church property.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The miniature 2/3 scale Capilla de Santo Nino at La Manga

A hundred yards or so up a steep, muddy slope with no defined road are the ruins of the village of La Manga. I parked my Jeep just north of the chapel, and hiked up to the ruins of the town, I did not see any private property sings, but I admired the buildings from afar just in case.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The main cluster of buildings at La Manga

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Overall view of La Manga from the chapel below

 

Arranged in the typical square style of the old Mexican plazas are a handful of stone and adobe buildings with the tattered remnants of their tin roofs flapping in the wind.  I have not been able to find any information on when La Manga was founded, or when it died- There is one crude pole in the center of the plaza that appears to have brought electricity, or possibly telegraph or phone service to the hamlet long ago. La Manga is just one of the hundreds of  abandoned plazas and villages across New Mexico that share a similar mysterious history.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Picturesque red stone building at La Manga

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Another view of the same building

Thank You for Visiting!

Please share this page on your social media and check out my other blogs!

 

Check Out My Book- Click Here!

MyBook

Colorado Ghost Town Guide- The Foothills Region- Click Here!

HG2

Colorado Ghost Town Guide Book- The High Rockies!

HG3

Day #2 of A Ghost Town a Day For 30 Days is Wall Street which is located in Boulder County and easily accessible in the warmer months by following the signs in Four Mile Canyon.

Wall Street began its life around 1895 as a mining camp called “Delphi.” From 1895 to 1898 Delphi grew in size and numerous gold claims were staked in Schoolhouse, Melvina, and Emerson Gulches which surrounded the camp. For a little over two years a Post Office operated under the Delphi name.

wallstbk7

One of the older shacks at Wall Street

In 1898 Charles Caryl, a wealthy industrialist from New York arrived and bought up nearly all of the claims in Delphi. Caryl renamed the camp “Wall Street” in homage of his home in New York City.

wallstreet

The boom days at Wall Street

Charles Caryl funded the construction of a gold mill, built atop a towering stone foundation, that used a cutting-edge (at the time) chlorination process to extract gold from the host rock being processed. Today the mill buildings are long gone, but the enormous stone foundation still dominates the old Wall Street site.

wallstreetmill2

The Wall Street chlorination mill in its prime.

ws1

The towering foundation of the mill today.

wallstbk6

Some more of the stone foundation works that can be found around the mill site today.

Wall Street had a Post Office from 1898 to 1921 when the mining operations subsided and the population moved on.  Wall Street today has a small year-round population, as well as a number of summer residents. The town site today is a mixture of old and new, occupied, and vacant- The old schoolhouse has been converted into a residence, and the Assayer’s Office is now a museum open to the public in summer months.

wallstbk2

Wall Street school house, converted into a residence in recent years.

wallst

The James F. Bailey Assayer’s Office- Now a museum in the summer months

wallst1

A view down main street shows the chlorination mill and the Assayer’s Office sometime in the glory days of Wall Street, the town boomed between 1989 and 1921.

 

Wall Street suffered some damage in the floods of 2013, and a large two-story house at the mouth of the canyon was damaged so severely it has since been torn down.

wallstbk1

Sadly, this old Victorian house was damaged in the flood of 2013 and has been torn down since this photo was taken. Note: Front lower wall is bulging outwards due to flood damage.

 

THANKS FOR VISITING MY BLOG!

PLEASE GIVE US A “SHARE” ON YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA PAGES!

 

CHECK OUT MY BOOK- CLICK HERE TO ORDER!

MyBook

 

COLORADO GHOST TOWN GUIDE BOOK- THE FOOTHILLS REGION- CLICK HERE!

HG2

GHOST TOWN GUIDE BOOK- THE HIGH ROCKIES- CLICK HERE TO ORDER!

HG3

Rexford, Colorado is the first featured spot in “A Ghost Town a Day For 30 Days” which will last the month of April.

Rexford was the small settlement that sprang up around the Rexford Mining Corporations claims on the high upper reaches of the Swan River near Breckenridge, Colorado. Rexford dates to 1881, following the discovery of gold veins at the site by Daniel Patrick in 1880.  Rexford faded into oblivion sometime around 1900.

rx1

One of the first cabins you will encounter as you approach Rexford, this cabin sits on a hillside about a few hundred yards from the main part of the Rexford mining camp

rx26

Another view of the same cabin on the outskirts of Rexford

Rexford consisted of the mines, a general store, an assayer’s office, a large log bunkhouse, a number of small personal cabins, and a saloon. Today the remnants of all of the buildings and the giant cast iron bioler from the mine workings remain in a beautiful meadow at the edge of timberline along a rugged 4×4 trail.

rx7

According to an description of the town this tiny log foundation was once the Assayer’s Office

rx3

One of the small personal cabins remaining at Rexford

rx2

Rexford dwelling

rx5

These are the ruins of the giant log bunkhouse at Rexford

rx4

A pine tree now calls this miner’s cabin home

rx10

This is the collapsed facade of the Rexford General Store

rx16

A view from the collapsed General Store looking across the 4×4 trail through town, the logs in the distance mark the spot of the boarding house at Rexford.

rx6

Another cabin nearly lost to time and nature

rx8

Remains of the Assayer’s Office and Saloon at Rexford

rx14

Wildflowers at Rexford

rx19

Mine wrokings and the old cast iron boiler at Rexford

If you enjoyed these photos please check out my other blogs and give us a “share” on your social media pages!  

Check Out My Book “Abandoned Western Colorado” Click Here To Order!

MyBook

 

Ghost Town Guide Book: Colorado Foothills Region Click Here to Order!

HG2

Ghost Town Guide Book: Colorado High Rockies Region Click Here to Order!

HG3