Jump to content

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

Ghost Towns  

35 members have voted

  1. 1. Keep Their Location Secret?

    • Yes
      8
    • No
      8
    • Some
      19


Recommended Posts

It's a shame what happened to those sites. It make me pissed to go out to a site and see new vandalism. Add in the idea of finding "treasure" and we will see the vandalism increase on a major scale. This is what upset me about those new shows on the Discovery Channel that showed people going out to old ghost towns looking for antiques. I wonder how many others thought they could head out to the nearest ghost town and find antiques too. 

 

I heard the mill at Aurora was torn down to avoid "improvement" taxes or something like that. Anyone have any more information on this? I was reading one of the many new ghost towns books I bought and it mentioned that a lot of the old buildings in Aurora were torn down to avoid paying taxes on them. I have not verified any of this information though, but if true, what a freaking shame!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've heard of counties going in and trying to tax the land owners/site claimer for buildings or "improvements" of long established mine sites.  It doesn't surprise me, counties are either being forced to look for more revenue because the feds take and take or they're just greedy and looking for their chunk of the pie.  It's just BS that if you file a claim on an old site, and there happens to be structures or buildings on it, they feel you should pay for it even though they haven't been getting taxes on the site for over 50 years.  Forbid anyone try to establish a new venture that might employ people and thus make more tax money without first taxing them into the poor house.

 

But the biggest issue is reclamation by the BLM.  Millions are set aside from taxes and mining claims plus what ever the feds divvy up to go in and remove everything man made and in most cases fill in the shafts or implode adits.  Sometimes they put in bat girders in the shafts and adits if they find nesting, but when they are done, usually very little remains.  Though it does seem to be on a case by case or more likely region by region situation.  The Vegas BLM I feel believes in removing anything and everything while some of the rural BLM offices look at cleaning up hazardous waste and removing unsafe structures while leaving as much history alone as possible.  Then again it likely boils down to the specific field director.

 

There's places I have found that with out specific GPS coordinates very few people would come across, those I tend to keep to myself though I make the pictures public, can't hurt anything if they don't know where it is.  Like others have said though, if it's a well known, especially published place, you're likely not going to do anymore damage than has been done by saying where the picture was taken.

 

And I have turned in "diggers" before, though I doubt very little was ever done to follow up.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

BLM. Lawd don't get me started.

BLM has a huge public relations problem, and they deserve it, IMO.

That is based on experience working with them in an "allied agency" mode, and trying to work with them on a recreational area management plan, and then watching them work in the field as a private citizen quietly watching them "do business".

At some point we, as in US citizenry, going to have to have a back-to basics talk with ourselves, and then put forth the effort to seriously scrub the agencies that claim to work for us. This outfit is infested with nitwits who are completely consumed by their own political agenda, and their LEO staff is, well...poorly trained, poorly supervised, and most shouldn't be doing the job.

Of course this is just my opinion. I could be wrong. But I ain't.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ive always thought that giving a basic area of the location then if one is a true ghosttowner then he could and would research the town more. Most of the vandals are people that happen upon the towns and are just showing off their 4x4s to others. I feel books and maps should show exact locations but on the internet easy to find no.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

well another case for keeping locations private. A fellow ghost town and mining camp enthusiast posted some photos of one of his adventures on our FJ cruiser page on Facebook. One of the photos was of stacks of TNT crates. Some do gooder on the site sent the photo to the ATF and my friend got a phone call today from the Las Vegas ATF office demanding to know the location of the photo. He has politely declined to answer their questions and confirmed that the TNT boxes are full of old ore samples. They are still trying to convince him to disclose the location. He told them that the last thing we wanted was BLM having an excuse to block off yet another great exploration site. If I get any updates, I will post it up. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would have immediately told the ATF agent one thing and one thing only - "You're a Federal agent and I will not answer any questions."

 

No explanations, no statements about 'ore samples', nothing at all.  18 USC 1001 looks benign, but it's not.  It's often twisted to screw people, even people doing the right thing (or sincerely thinking they're doing the right thing.) 

 

An alternative response would have been "Go pound sand", followed by hanging up the phone. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This will be interesting to watch, please keep us updated Nick.


I would have immediately told the ATF agent one thing and one thing only - "You're a Federal agent and I will not answer any questions."

 

No explanations, no statements about 'ore samples', nothing at all.  18 USC 1001 looks benign, but it's not.  It's often twisted to screw people, even people doing the right thing (or sincerely thinking they're doing the right thing.) 

 

An alternative response would have been "Go pound sand", followed by hanging up the phone. 

 

I agree Ed! :iagree22:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is also a good reason to remove geotags from images before you upload them (or just disable the relevant location service prior to taking pictures).  Any numbnut with an EXIF extractor can pull the lat/lon. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Arch, what operating system do you use?  Windows, OS X, Linux or something else?

 

I'm going to run on the assumption of Windows, for now.  I don't, so my environment is different.  Research suggested this application:

 

http://www.irfanview.com/

 

Basically you download it and install.  Then you snarf images off the web, open them with the app, and see what EXIF data is in the image.  I'm not really sure how else to "Dummy" it, like you asked.  Since you post here and do other things, you clearly know how to use a computer for useful tasks, open files, download files, etc.  :)

 

I'm about to look at some Firefox add-ons for viewing EXIF data (I've never tried them, I usually use command-line tools on Unix systems for this, because I can automate downloads and extraction).  If any of them don't suck much, I'll update here.  Do you use Firefox or IE for your web pursuits?

Desertdog I would love an explanation "for dummies" on how to do this. And I do mean for dummies.

Lotsa pictures, etc.

:D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In the mid 1950s there were 1 or 2 books on ghost towning in Nevada written by Nell Murbarger or Murburger. In one of those she talked about Aurora (I believe that is correct) being torn down for the old bricks. Memory says the bricks were hauled to LA or some such place to be used in new houses.  They were/are really good books if they can be found now. I think she said that all happened just after WW2 ended.

 

Early on Brian10x talked about the old timers loosening up with info. I know this is a different time and place - however when I was looking for help finding places in the late 50s and early 60s the old timers were always there with info. Now I am one of the old timers and I do not want the knowledge and information I have gained over the years to just disappear because I no longer live in Nevada. For example I have a lot of old maps - some have been marked up by the old timers - locations of places that have no names. Wood cutter camps, mills, etc-  not towns. Some are just old maps that show a different picture of how an area was. I am going to do some thinking about how to share some of this - without a bunch of grief for doing it. If we dont all share a lot of knowledge will be lost....   

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Remember Lee, we have forums for Established Members only if you don't want those maps and information to go out to just anybody.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bob  Thanks for that info - I  am new to this sort of communication - it will take a bit of work to figure out what I have to do to even get what I have out to any body. I will be leaving tomorrow for a bit - will check in with you all when I get back - probably a couple of days. 

 

Take Care   

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The old site of Goldstone, CA was fairly decent. I drove there with a bunch of friends in 2007. I forgot my camera, so I made plans to drive back with my wife two weeks later. During the later trip, I had a hell of a time even finding the town site. It had been totally dug up! And I mean everything was gone, no foundations, no trash piles and no nothing that ever showed anything was there. Now my only regret was not taking my camera on the first trip.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This will be interesting to watch, please keep us updated Nick.

 

I agree Ed! :iagree22:

 Quick update. My friend told the ATF agent that he was exercising his right to remain silent on the location and assured the agent that he and his group were positive beyond a shadow of a doubt that there were no live explosives on site. Not a peep since then!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In keeping with the idea of sharing I want to reccomend a couple of books that I have not seen mentioned. If this is old news - sorry about that - I would rather be redundent than have folks miss out on these books. They are the Saga of Lake Tahoe volumnes 1 and 2. Volume 1 came out in 1957 and volume 2 came out in 1973.  Author is E. B. Scott.  These are excellant books - lots of photos - good history - and lots of detail notes. They were my bibles when I was exploring the area on the Nevada side of the lake. Good information about the area between Carson and Tahoe - and all around the lake. Highly reccomend them - do not know if they are still in print. Also here is a link I found - pretty handy for looking at topo maps and getting utm data. 

utm_coordinates_topo_map1.html

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In the mid 1950s there were 1 or 2 books on ghost towning in Nevada written by Nell Murbarger or Murburger. In one of those she talked about Aurora (I believe that is correct) being torn down for the old bricks. Memory says the bricks were hauled to LA or some such place to be used in new houses.  They were/are really good books if they can be found now. I think she said that all happened just after WW2 ended.

 

Not sure why, but this thread is showing up in the "View New Content" list, even though the last entry was nearly a year ago.

 

But, in response to this comment, Nell Murbarer's books, GHOSTS OF THE GLORY TRAIL and SOVERIGNS OF THE SAGE can still be found in used book stores and libraries.  GHOSTS went through numerous reprints and can be found in paperback.

 

I purchased her paperback nearly three decades ago.  In 2002, at Dawson's books in Portland, Oregon, I found a hardback, early edition, with a full page note and signature by Murbarger herself.  I paid $5.  So now I have two copies of that fine book.

 

I first saw GHOSTS back in my high school days in the school library (late 1960s) and being an avid ghost town nut, it was my favorite book.

 

I also have a copy of SOVERIGNS, which is basically GHOSTS Part 2.

 

Both books are fleshed out versions of Murbarger's work published in Desert Magazine.  I have a small remainder of my old collection of issues, ranging from the 1940s to the last issue in the early 1980s.  At one time I had many of her works published there, but it's been quite some time since I've pulled out those magazines and browsed through what I have left.  In my high school days, my nose was always poked into Desert Magazine.  It fueled my desire to get out and explore.  Which I did after I graduated, in the family Rambler.

 

As for Aurora's bricks, you are correct, in that used brick was highly sought after for the post war southern California building boom.  Though quite sad, such follows the pattern for many historic locations even before that time.  When someone needed materials or entire structures, they simply obtained them at the numerous ghost towns and mining camps, and moved them entirely or in pieces.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now


  • Similar Content

    • By Backwoods Beast
      Hey everyone,
      so this is my first explore post, I'm probably going to be slow sharing since I'm planning on waiting until my YouTube videos come out. but I just wanted to give an update on Olinghouse Nevada. I was out there about a month ago with my friend. As some of you may know there is many rumors about the Olinghouse area being guarded by an "old man with a gun chasing people of the property".  Well I took a few trips out there because I really wanted to get some cool footage. I didn't go into all of the structures because it seemed like the floors weren't sturdy enough to hold my weight. My friend went in them but she only weighs about 115 lbs.  The mine has been purchased and is currently active. We went on a Sunday after the first ground freeze because that's usually when mining operations stop for the winter.  There was still a lot of activity of a small ATV vehicle going back and forth to the miners headquarters building, so we tried to stay hidden as possible.  I looked at the Olinghouse Facebook page just a few days ago and it said people tried to get permission to go out there but were denied, so I'm glad I got what I did without being seen. The place is still in really good shape. Its hard to tell the age of some of the buildings, most of them have probably been frankensteined over the years since its been a home to squatters, meth-labbers, and the occasional mine enthusiast.
       
      If you plan on exploring the area, I suggest at least with 4 wheel drive and drive past the headqaurters building and do a little 4wheeling to the back ranch house and you can stay hidden easier from back there.  There is also a road that seems to lead to some interesting thing that I can see from the Sat pics, but I will definitely need an ATV to get there. anyways. Here is the video if you'd like to check it out. 
      See you out there!
      Backwoods Beast
       
       
       


    • By Bob
      I have been doing a lot of research lately on various ghost towns and it seemed back in the 50's, 60's, and even 70's, many of the ghost towns had at least on resident who lived in those ghost towns. I posted on story in the Aurora thread, and you can read another account of an elderly couple who lived in Fairview Nevada ghost town here (starting at page 11). Others that come to mine are Seldom Seen Slim, the couple that lived near the burrow tunnel in death valley, and Shorty Harris (I think that was his name). Seems once these old timers died off, nobody replaced them. Only one time did I enter a ghost town to find a resident living there. This was at New Idria and must have been about 15 years ago.
       
      I have to wonder why nobody takes up residence at these old ghost towns like they did years ago. I am betting all of these ghost towns would have been kept in far better shape if some old desert rat or couple had taken up residence. I find it extremely interesting to read these people's stories about living in these old ghost town. Anyone have any ideas why we don't see more people living in these old ghost towns like they did years ago?
    • By ptillett
      I've run across a lot of odd things in the desert, right? Today's installment isn't just one of the oddest, it is one of my all time favorites as well. It's called "The Shaffer Fish Bowl." I've spoken to many people who know a great deal about Route 66 and very few had ever heard of it, and not a single one of them had actually seen it. We went there in late March.

      I knew that photos wouldn't reflect just how isolated this place is. So, If you don't mind, please watch this very short video. I apologize in advance for my nasal sounding and spontaneous narration. I hope the feeling of pure solitude and isolation comes through for you in this video.

      https://picasaweb.google.com/115893260639092994154/PatrickTillett04#5922211896425413282



      Nothing as far as the eye can see. It's that way in the other direction as well. Kingman Arizona is on the other side of the far mountain range.



      The Shaffer Fish Bowl

      Moss grows in the tank, the fish eat the moss and the spring keeps the tank full. Add to that the fact that goldfish can live for up to and beyond 20 years under the right conditions. The can even survive under ice. I'm still thinking that somebody replaces the fish if they die.


      The hike up to the spring is short, but kind of steep. After checking out the fish bowl, I noticed that there was another trail leading around the rocks.




      I'm no geologist, but I'm pretty sure that there aren't any square caves in nature. I'm thinking that maybe this was going to be a mine shaft and was carved out by the same person who created the tank to catch water from the natural spring. It might have been Shaffer, or maybe he came along later. It's a mystery to me (for the time being anyway).




      I always have to do this to show you how steep a drop off is.


      The trail abruptly ends at that large rock. Another mystery.
    • By CindyN11
      http://www.odt.co.nz/regions/central-otago/267266/app-will-breathe-new-life-ghost-towns
      A computer program believed to be a world first will breathe life into the ghost towns that once served the Bendigo goldfields.
      A gold-mining heritage site mobile device app designed by the University of Canterbury will be available for free download later this year.
      It will allow people visiting the Bendigo area in the hills behind Tarras to point their smartphone or touch-screen computer at any site within the historic reserve and receive information and photos about what was on that site at the height of the gold rush.
      The man behind the project is Canterbury University history researcher Lloyd Carpenter, who has developed the content. Dr Carpenter is passionate about Central Otago's goldfields history and wanted visitors to Bendigo to ''see it as it used to be''.
      ''The worst thing about wandering around Bendigo now is that it's dead. It was such an exciting vibrant place, full of people in the gold mining days, and if you were visiting then, it would be full of noise and bustle. This app will take away that ghost town feel and put people back in the town.
      ''Visitors don't want to see just another stone house; they want to know who lived there, what was it like to live there and what was it like inside. Often they had wallpaper and carpets, so they weren't the primitive homes some imagine.''
      Interpretation boards could hold limited information, but the app would give a fuller picture, and even include data such as class lists from the school, Dr Carpenter said. Experts involved in heritage interpretation in the United States and Australia believed the heritage app was a world first, he said.
      ''It's exciting that Central Otago's gold mining history has been dragged into the 21st century with the development of this app.''
      The university's Human Interface Technology Laboratory (HIT Lab) had produced the computer software and the Otago Goldfields Heritage Trust was a partner in the project and sourced $50,000 funding from the Central Lakes Trust.
      Bendigo was the first focus and the technology would be rolled out to other nearby mining sites. Dr Carpenter and a team from HIT Lab would be testing the app ''in the field'' at Bendigo at the end of this month .
      It would be an international team, with computer programming technicians from Austria, Korea and the United States.
      The app, which should be ready to launch in November, would be simple to use and quick to download, as well as providing information, photos and audio for all kinds of user groups, Dr Carpenter said.
      ''We're so lucky to have this exciting goldfields history in Otago and this is one way to communicate my passion for the area's heritage.''
      The stories being presented would not be a sanitised version of events, he said.
      ''It'll be the real stories. It was a hard life for those who lived there but a good life.''
      Goldfields trust president Martin Anderson said the organisation was excited about the app, after seeing ''snippets'' of it in action and was delighted to be a partner in the project.
      - lynda.van.kempen@odt.co.nz
  • Who's Online   1 Member, 0 Anonymous, 12 Guests (See full list)



×