The mill processed all the gold taken from the Golden Reward, Bodie and Elk mines. At one time, the Wrigley brothers owned the Bodie mine, says the commemorative sign on site.
Yes! The same Wrigleys of chewing gum fame. Like Big Red and Juicy Fruit!
The mill kept the town going after the mine shut down in 1917. The mine stayed idle until it reopened in 1934. Life picked up and the townspeople restored many of the original buildings, like the one above that doubled as a schoolhouse and a saloon.
But the mine closed again in 1940 and folks deserted Bodie by 1962 when the mill burned down. From 1903 to 1940, the mine turned out $1.3 million.
One million dollars! (Ahem … hold pinky next to mouth while reading that.)
Bodie is a ghost-town photographer’s gem. But it was only the beginning of a stellar day of hunting.
This beauty sits just up the road from Bodie:
The colours are mesmerizing.
The satellite dish indicates the farmhouse ghosts are recent residents.
And the cattle are skittish when I approach. They cluster in the corner, away from the click of my shutter.
It isn’t the last of the gems we find after we head north and west of Chesaw.
And this one (which I think looks awesome in black and white):
Finally, this lonely two-storey sits on Chesaw Road. It’s opposite a vital ranching operation with one of those wind chimes that remind me of Twister and tornadoes.
Many of the homes sit behind “Posted” and “No Trespassing” signs.
I have to respect that. It isn’t a good idea for me to get hauled off to the wild west lockup.