Sunday, March 15, 2009
March, Friday the 13th.......Dan and I went for a ride today in the truck. Rather unusual for us because lately we've just been out and about on the quad. We went north to Swansea Ghost Town. Swansea was a mining town and has alot of old buildings and foundations still standing. We noticed that there were some people working on some buildings, doing some restoration. There is lots to see. There is a walking tour and plaques explaining what the different buildings and foundations were........................ http://www.ghosttowns.com/states/az/swansea.html Here is some history about the Swansea Townsite. This is what the BLM (Bureau of Land Management) calls the place. Taken from the pamphlet I picked up when we were there................................... "Swansea Townsite, located about 30 miles northest of Parker, Arizona, once a flourishing copper mining development, not sits in memory of a bygone era...Prospectors began working the area in the year 1862. Results were slow until 1886, when three miners struck a silver-lead ore on the Ruby Silver claim. Soon the silver ran out, leaving on a "worthless" copper deposit. John W. Johnson eventually sold his mining claims in 1904 to the Signal Group. The new owners found the key to fully developing the copper mine lay with the Arizona & California Railroad's new line from Wickenburg to Parker...T.J. Carrigan, one of the new owners, began looking for investors. He convinced George Mitchell to take a 21-mile buckboard ride through the desert to visit the claim in 1908. It worked. Mitchell, a Swansea born Welshman, incorporated the Clara Consolidated the following year. Gaining capital from Foreign investors, he then built a blast furnace smelter, power plant, water system and dug more mine shafts. By 1909, with a population of about 500 people, the town blossomed to include saloons, a general store, post office and even a moving picture house....The first train arrived at the adobe depot on the new Swansea Railroad in 1910. By May of that same year, the furnaces began producing the first copper at a rate of 50 tons a day. Unfortunately, Mitchell, who invested heavily above ground and not enough in the mines, was forced to declare bankruptcy in 1911......After bankruptcy was declared, the mine had several false starts until 1915, when Ernest C. Lane became the manager and successfully ran the mine for a number of different owners. New adobe houses were built for company families and worker cottages were built near the store.....The mine fell victim to the Great Depression and a declining copper marker, and never boomed again. The last milling was reported in 1944." When we were there we also seen small foundations that used to be a hospital and school. We tried to imagine how the train looked when it came across the train scales. We both wanna go back someday with the quad and ride around the whole area exploring. If you have a something other then a big F-350 that you don't want to get all scratched up, there are alot of places to ride and check out. Anyway, I hope you enjoy the pictures I took of Swansea. BubbleShare: Share photos - Find great Clip Art Images. BubbleShare: Share photos - Easy Photo Sharing Saturday, March 14........This was a "stay at home day". Our pals, Rus and Deb, came over for dinner. They made three different kinds of bean dishes using their solar oven. Neat way to cook food. They sure did taste good. I made corn muffins and we had watermelon. YUMMY dinner! Rus brought his kite and it flew for a bit until the wind just quit. There was no way that kite was gonna fly the rest of the night. Dan played with Hobbs, the dog who thinks he is a people. I swear that he understands every word you say. Hes an older dog and is well loved. We sat and enjoyed another pretty sunset in the desert, then they went home.