Friday, June 18, 2010

Gold Hill and Callao June 14, 2010

Remants of the mining to the east

On June 14 I traveled approximately fifty miles south of Wendover to two historic towns in Utah: Gold Hill and Callao. Gold Hill was a boom and bust mining community in Toele County which produced gold, silver, copper, lead, tungsten, arsenic and bismuth. Callao was a Pony Express station in western Juab County. All information comes from the book Utah Ghost Towns by Stephen Carr.

Gold Hill- Gold Hill first started mining operations in 1882 as part of Clifton Mining District. The original boom revolved around gold which was found to the east of town. By 1906 the boom had faded and the inhabitants left the area. During World War I the town boomed again because of the need for copper. The importance of the mines was helped by the completion of the Deep Creek Railroad which helped transport copper ore to Salt Lake City. Later during the war tungsten and arsenic became important. The government needed arsenic to control the boll weevil in the South. By 1924, the arsenic boom died with cheaper foreign sources and the town died too. Finally during World War II idle mines were restarted because of the need for tungsten and arsenic. From1944 to 1945 ore wih 25% arsenic was shipped to Salt Lake City. After two years the mines stopped production.
Lizard in the desert near the mines

Deserted store front on mainstreet

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