|Can you believe it, I'm finally going to get the Castle Dome City post up! It's written as though it happened today, because that's when I wrote it! I just didn't go through the pics so it never got posted. Anyway, we actually visited in Mid April and I'm going to split the pics into 3 posts. Wayyyyy to many otherwise. I hope you find it as interesting as we did!
Today, John & Joyce, Bob & Sara and Larry and I spent almost 4 hours exploring Castle Dome City. We'd heard that it was an interesting place and boy were they right! If you've not heard of Castle Dome City, it's located off of Hwy 95 at mile post 55. After leaving the hwy you travel 10 miles, the first 3 paved, the last 7 gravel and very bumpy. Since there were 6 of us, two trucks were required for our trip so the guys went in one and we girls traveled together in the other one. Worked for us, as we take way more pics! It was a beautiful day and the temp was cooler than expected which really made for a great day!
Just so you'll know what's going on, here's a few facts about the city:
“Castle Dome City was established in 1864. At one time there were over 300 mines in this area. As with many mining boomtowns, mining activity diminished. The mines reopened in 1890, and the area became a significant source of lead for both World War I and World War II. In particular, when the Arizona Lead Company reopened the mines in 1943, they were able to produce significant amounts of lead in order to meet wartime demands. After World War II, the demand for lead decreased, and the town again went into decline, though mining activity continued for some years in the area. The school was shut down in 1950, and the mines went into and out of use as the price of silver, still found in the area, rose and fell. By 1978, the mines were all shut down, and the last of the residents were gone. The property that was previously Castle Dome town and mining camp was purchased in 1994 by Allen and Stephanie Armstrong, and turned into the Castle Dome Mines Museum. The museum site houses over 35 restored and recreated buildings — seven original to the town, and the rest are period representations built mostly from locally scavenged materials. Each building, among them a saloon, a hotel, a mill, and a blacksmith, is staged to look like it might have looked in the town's heyday, some 100 years ago.”
And their website says:
"What you will see here is a remnant town which stood larger than Yuma in 1878. Her weather beaten buildings remain in an area little changed from the 1800's. The mills stand silent, housing original boiler, stamp mill, and elevator, as if tomorrow they will awaken to the thunderous roar of steel crushing rock. The boardwalks still creak, the church bell rings out, the five saloons just await the story of their last shootout. The horse trails are beaten down & lead to the blacksmith. The old stage harness lies empty and the nail bags are waiting to be filled. The old glass has turned dark purple from years of sun. The machine shop has few changes, and old uncovered Roulette table is ready to spin up your fortune. The old Mercantile is still well stocked, the Doctor and Dentist office with all the tools to fix you up still awaits your visit. If you need a Post Office or want to buy a lot, the Land office and claim Filing office sits on the hill. All the details that made the 1800's the wild west are here for you to experience. Only the rugged need apply, to the Desert Woman who lived here for Decades. Come by, and you can visit the old Graveyard, or stand on the Balcony of the 2nd floor of the Doc's office and see for miles. Checking our the old buildings with everything from the oldest Levi Strauss pants in the world to the Dainties in the dress shop, are all here and more."
Well, that about says it all! It was a great afternoon and one we would all recommend as a 'must see'. Well worth the $10 entrance fee. I would recommend you bring a hat, good walking shoes, plenty of water and either a full tummy or a picnic lunch. We did all of the above. There are snacks available but if you want lunch you'll need to bring it along. There are covered picnic tables on site.
Between Joyce & I, we took over 400 pics today! Oh my....Will try to break them down into 3 or so posts so enjoy. If you like old 'stuff' you will for sure! Have a great day....