The now “ghost town” of “Shaniko Oregon” was once a bustling gold mining town in the Oregon Desert. It is located in Wasco County Oregon along U.S. Route 97 just north of Antelope. In 2010, there was 36 registered residents. It sits at 3,343 feet above sea level atop a high plateau in a sparse vegetative environment of sage, bunch grass, and junipers. After gold was discovered in Canyon City, Euro-Americans came to the area in 1862 during the Gold Rush. Camps were setup wherever water was found. The first camp close to where Shaniko now resides was Bakeoven and then camp Cross Hollow which eventually evolved into Shaniko. 1867 saw feuds with local Indians and robberies of gold transports. The United states awarded a grant to build a military wagon road from the Dalles to Fort Boise, Idaho. Along the route homesteaders began claiming all the available land. One of the settlers was August Scherneckau who settled here after the Civil War in 1874 that Shaniko was named after as is common after postmasters which August was in 1879. The post office of Cross Hollows closed in 1887 and Shaniko post office opened in 1900. The Columbia Southern Railway was built in 1900 and terminus was in Shaniko from Biggs Junction. This was when it was known as the “Wool Capital of the World” focusing on wheat, wool, cattle, and sheep production. 1911 the Oregon-Washington Railroad and Navigation Company utilized an alternative route from Portland to Bend diverting traffic from the Columbia Southern forcing Shaniko’s industry and population to decline. The Passenger service to Shaniko ended in the 1930’s and shut down by 1966. The town became a ghost town in 1982.
The second largest city in the state of Colorado, following under Denver in populace, Colorado Springs often nicknamed “The Springs” is a municipal hub for government, military, education, religion, sports, and recreation. It is the heart of El Paso County and is located in Central Colorado on the eastern slopes of the Rockies, in the shadow of Cheyenne Mountain, NORAD, and Pike’s Peak. It is located along Fountain Creek as its main water source. The region of Colorado Springs is located within the high desert of the Southern Rocky Mountains bordering its west, with the high plains to the east, high desert lands to the south, and the Palmer Divide to the north. It is approximately 60 miles south of Denver – the Mile High City, of which it beats in elevation at 6,035 feet. It is home to the United States Olympic Committee and training center. Colorado Springs has a population of over a 1/2 million residents. It encompasses over 195 square miles.
The area that is now Colorado Springs, was once home to the Cheyenne, Arapaho, and Ute tribes of the first inhabitants of the Americas. Once Euro-American settlers populated the area, the lands here were included in the 1803 Louisiana purchase and the 1854 Kansas Territory records. The first settlement by Euro-Americans occured in 1859 and was part of the Jefferson Territory, at the Front Range confluence of Fountain and Camp Creeks during the Gold Rush plaguing the Pikes Peak region in the mid 1800’s. It became the capital of the Colorado Territory in 1861, but in 1862 the capital was moved to Denver. By 1871 the “Colorado Springs Company” established the towns of La Font (now known as Manitou Springs) and the Fountain Colony up and down stream of Old Colorado City (the foundation of Colorado Springs). The former “Fountain Colony” became “Colorado Springs”. At a later date, that which was “Fountain Colony” became Fountain, Colorado and that which was “Old Colorado City” became Colorado Springs. The Military camp and town of “Fort Carson” was built within the middle area between Fountain and Old Colorado City. These “annexations” occured primarily around the late 1800’s and included the creation and division of Seavey’s Addition, West Colorado Springs, East End, North End, and the Broadmoor suburb that hosted the Broadmoor Casino. By 1895 there were over four Mining exchanges and over 275 mining brokers running the city.
After the mining boom gaining attention to the city, the experimental scientist Nikola Tesla created a Tesla Experimental station here on Knob Hill from 1899-1901. The Airport was established in 1919, with the Alexander Airport towards the north end of the city opening in 1925. The current Colorado Springs Municipal Airport was established in 1927.
By the 1940’s Colorado Springs became a central hub for the military, first with the establishment of Peterson Air Force Base in 1942 during World War II. By the 1950’s it was the Cold War headquarters for the ADC Air Defense Command. Peterson Air Force base was reopened in 1951 as a US Air Force Base and by the 1970’s NORAD was built within Cheyenne Mountain. The city boomed again with the construction of colleges and Universities making it a place of learning with the acquisition of “University of Colorado: Colorado Springs”, “Pikes Peak Community College”, “Colorado College”, and “Colorado Technical University”. By the late 1970’s Colorado Springs became the U.S. Olympics training Center.
The region of Colorado Springs is located in a semi-arid climate zone gaining quickly changing weather patterns and temperature zones from the chinook winds that come down off the mountains during the winter, and drastic rapid warming in the summers. It is considered to be sunny year round at an average of 243 sunny days a year. It gets approximately 38 inches of snow a year, although the snow doesn’t stick around long. The region receives roughly 16-18 inches of rainfall a year. It is also a popular location for afternoon thunderstorms, even though they don’t always produce rain. It is one of the most active places in the United States for lightning strikes nad is one of the reasons Nikola Tesla selected it as a location for his lab studying electricity.
Colorado Springs has become a backdrop for many art projects, films, and books including but not limited to Stargate, Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman, War Games, Homicide Hunter, and the Prestige. In 2013 North Korea produced a propaganda film stating Colorado Springs as one of its four main targets for a missle strike.
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One of Colorado’s most famous historical mining towns. It was a town that brought many settlers to the area. It was rich in history and minerals with a colorful history outlining the Wild wild west. The city is a statutory city and county seat in Lake County Colorado. Elevation is 10,152 feet and is the highest incorporated city and second highest municipality in the United States. Originally the area led Gold rushers during the 1860’s Pikes Peak Gold Rush near present day Oro bringing miners into the region. With discovery of silver in 1874, It started as a Rocky Mountains mining town for silver off the headwaters of the Arkansas River. Prospectors discovered several silver-lead deposit lodes in the area. Historic figures Horace Austin Warner Tabor and August Meyer founded mines in the area setting off the Colorado Silver Boom by 1880 giving birth to one of the world’s largest silver camps hosting over 40,000 inhabitants. By the 19th century it became the 2nd largest city in Colorado after Denver. It was the tromping ground of “Buffalo Bill” Cody’s travelling revue and became the resting spot for infamous Texas Jack Omohundro. City became a very dangerous feuding grounds of the Wild West. It was brought under control by legendary lawman Mart Duggan. Home to many swindles where miners sold mines as prosperous when they were dry even though after some were dug deeper only to discover more ores such as in the case with “Chicken Bill” Lovell who dumped a wheelbarrow of silver ore into a barren Chrysolite barren pit he sold to Horace Tabor. By 1882, Oscar Wilde lectured at Leadville’s famous Tabor Opera House. Because of this, one of their new lodes was called “The Oscar”. The city was then graced by outlaw Doc Holliday in 1883 after the infamous O.K. Corral gunfight. Leadville saw miner strikes from 1896-1897 that led to death, destruction, revolt, and arson. By the 1950’s production fell and city abundance dried up with the repeal of the Sherman Silver Purchase Act in 1893. A small gold boom hit the area that was later followed by lead and zinc mining. Through its history, Leadville produced over 2.9 million troy ounces of gold, 240 million troy ounces of silver, 1 million short tons of lead, 785,000 short tons of zinc, and 53,000 short tons of copper. During World War II, Leadville came infamous for prostitution, gambling, and entertainment. In the 1980’s, the largest remaining prosperous mine “Climax” closed. Much of the local soil and water became deemed contaminated by the EPA scaring many out of the area. Even though it has since been cleaned up, the city shrunk to less than 2700 population by 2005. The town has brought back tourism with hiking, camping, outdoor recreation, and several festivals such as “Boom Days” and “Crystal Carnival”. It was the setting for the Unsinkable Molly Brown, The Silver King,Under Siege 2, Silver City, Switchback, and Day of the Dead.
Chacewater is a small village in Cornwall, England that is also a civil parish. It is located 3 miles east of Redruth. This small village sites within a valley between the hills that separate it from Threemilestone, Scorrier, and Saint Day. It only has three pubs and a club, “Twelveheads Press” (independent publishing company), a health center, two Nurseries, a primary school, a Literary Institute, a village hall, and a collection of shops. Once the home to a popular Railway, it was also home to the Chacewater Railway Station which is no longer. The town has an Anglican Church that is dedicated to St. Paul that was built in 1828. Chacewater was once a very popular settlement for mining. Chacewater is not far from Truro or Redruth.
“Resrudh” or “Redruth” is a town and civil parish of Cornwall, England with an approximate population of over 12,000 inhabitants. It lies along the route of the Old London to Land’s End trunk road (A30) and is 9 miles west of Truro and 18 miles northeast of Penzance. The name comes from the Cornish name “Rhyd-ruth” translating to “across a red river”. The first settlement that was Redruth is not where the town now lies, rather that would be the present Churchtown”. Redruth sits in a steeply wooded valley with Carn Brea on one side and Bullers Hill on the other. The area is rich in minerals and was popular for mining tin, copper, and lead. The first settlers stayed in this area by crossing a river and once they started extracting metal ores could have turned the river red … hence its name … “Across the River Red”. Redruth was overshadowed by neighboring towns in its early mining beginnings, but by the 18th century it hit a boom for the demand for copper by the Industrial Revolution and the creation of brass. Redruth then became one of the largest and richest mining areas in Britain. The 1880-1890’s the town gained a number of institutions including an a School of Mines and Art School, St. Andrew’s Church, the Free Library, and the Mining Exchange. 19th century saw a decline in the Mining industry and Britain began importing most of its copper ore. Many miners emigrated to mining industry in the Americas, Australia, and Africa. The last fully operational mine was the “South Crofty” at Pool between Redruth and Camborne which closed in 1998. The town has alot of shops, outlets, a covered market way, a multi-screen cinema, the Cornish Studies Centre, an old butter market, antique stores, a second hand book store, two supermarkets, Greens Newsagents, the Emporium, and the local Cash and Carry Jims. Cornwall’s first ILR Radio Station was founded in Redruth – “Pirate FM”. Redruth has become an important transportation hub with the railway station and numerous bus connections centering out of the city. It is also central to the main A30, A393, and A3047 roads. Redruth has also been home to Mick Fleetwood (of Fleetwood Mac), Harold Hayman, David Sturzaker, Charles Thomas, Kristin Scott Thomas, Luke Vibert, Rory McGrath, and Thomas Redruth.
Botallack – St. Just Area of Cornwall: Cornwall, England
This is an old mining village near St. Just that was featured in the “Poldark” television series. It hosts a pub named “The Queen’s Arms” and was home to many coppyer and tin mines. Its main mine, the Botallack Head Mine, closed down in 1895. The scenic ruins of the Crowns Mine hear here is a tourist hotspot for the mine and old engine houses. From 1907-1914 the mines were reworked for arsenic. The mines in the area are now protected by the National Trust. The area is also home to the mineral “Botallackite”.
St. Just: Is the nearest town to the commercial resort “Land’s End”. It is located on the edge of the moors and close to the panoramic coastline about 8 miles from Penzance. It was once the center of tin mining and is now a tourist hotspot. The town is littered with granite cottages that are now vacation rentals. In the center of town is the Plain-an-Gwarry theater used for miracle plays in medieval times as well as the more recent Lafrowda Festival. A mile north of town is the “hooting carn or cairn” that is known to be haunted by a local group of witches led by Old Moll. It is believed underneath the cairn lies the Gump where demons fight and the Devil deposits lost souls. Its the town and civil parish that encompasses St. Just, Trewellard, Pendeen, and Kelynack. It has a population of approximately 4,690 (2001 census). The name for the town is after “St. Just” or “Justus” who was sent to England by Pope Gregory in 596 CE with Saint Augustine to convert the Anglo-Saxons. St. Just was consecrated Bishop in 604 and appointed to the see of Rochester by King Ethelbert of Kent. By 616 he was made Archbishop of Cantebury. The town served the mines of Boscaswell Downs, Balleswidden, Parknoweth, Boscean, Wheal Owles, Wheat boys, Levant, Botallack, and Geevor. It is a historical center for tourists wanting to learn about the history of Cornish mining.
Pendeen, Cornwall, England
Pendeen is a very panoramic and scenic coastal village on the Penwith peninsula in Cornwall, England. It is located 3 miles north of St. Just and 7 miles west of Penzance. Its a small village consisting of a community center, shop, post office, primary school, and few small businesses. The town is named after the Pendeen Lighthouse which is a mile away from the village on the coast (called the Pendeen Watch). “Pendeen” is also supposed to mean “headland of a fort”. The area was historically known for being a center for smuggling activities and mining. It was once a thriving tin and copper mining town. The town and its area is riddled with underground tunnels and passages. One of the most famous mining incidents in history occured in this area at the Levant Mine which in 1919 trapped over 30 miners. Tourists also come to Pendeen for its engine houses as it holds the oldest working beam engine in the UK. The hill that overlooks Pendeen is known as “The Carn” which is a site of a granite quarry that build the village church. This Church is the Church of St. John and was designed by parson Robert Aitken in 1851. Pendeen is also known for the Chun Castle, Chun Quoit, and its Geevor Tin Mine. It is believed Mining occured in this area for over 3,000 years. 2,000 years ago there is evidence of the Romans bringing Jews to Pendeen to work the mines. It is the beaches of Pendeen where the “Liberty” wreck can be found (or what is left of her).
Ding Dong Mine and the Bogs Near Madron, Cornwall, England
As I was searching for the Nine Maidens Stone Circle i soon found myself in a bog and a mine field. Not exactly the mine field one would think when one states such a thing, but rather fields of pit mines that were no longer in use or drained. This is known locally as the Ding Dong Mining Area. The Ding Dong mine at the center of all the semi-roped off shafts and pits that looked alot like sunken depressions or sinkholes. This enormous shaft mine is a historic landmark of the area. After stumbling off the proven footpath, I realized I was wandering around animal paths and trails until they vanished in the bog and I rather found myself waist deep in prickly bog plants and no stone monuments in sight. The Ding Dong Mine in this area is a landmark often used to find Men-at-Tol and Nine Maidens Circle in Cornwall as its massive tower can be seen on the horizon. It is an old mining area in the Lands End granite mass located approximately 2 miles south of St. Just to Penzance roadway. No one for sure knows why it is called “Ding Dong”, but one suggestion is reference to it as such in Cannon Jennings book on the history of Madron, Morvah, and Penzance that refers to the “head of the lode” outcrop of tin on this hill. In Madron there is a “Ding Dong” bell that was rung to mark the end of the last shift for the miners each day. In 1714, the Ding Dong Mines consisted of actually three separate mines – “the Good Fortune”, “Wheal Malkin”, and “Hard Shafts Bounds”. By the 18th century there were at least seven mines and it is believed the name “Ding Dong” was not used until the turn of the 18th century. By 1782 there were 16 working mines in the area. Ding Dong made the headlines in 1796 for copyright infringement as a 28 inch cylinder inverted engine designed by Edward Bull was put into Ding Dong as he utilized their methodology to create his own engines and claimed as his own. The one erected at Ding Dong during this year was with a conventional Boulton and Watt engine inverted by Richard Trevithick and William West. The Ding Dong mine was in its final form by 1820 as they erected a new ‘fire engine’ and by 1834 had two pumping engines and two winding engines. By 1850 the mine was exhausted with mining moving around the area tapping what was left. With 206 in employ, the Ding Dong mine survived the depression in tin prices that was caused by the American Civil War although manpower decreased to a crew of 121 from the 206. The mine stopped production by 1877. It was briefly re-opened in 1911 when tin prices rose and the dumps were explored for any remains. This lasted from 1912-1915 as they found 51 tons of tin concentrate left, but when metal prices dropped again – they closed. Since that time, three other attempts were unsuccessfully made to re-open the mines.
The Rugged San Juans * Near Gunnison, Colorado *
One of Colorado’s most panoramic features, is the rugged mountain chain in southwestern Colorado that is an integral part of the Rockies known as the San Juan mountains. They consist of very steep, highly mineralized stone composition slopes and are the heart of what is known as the Colorado Mineral Belt, most famous throughout history for its gold and silver mining. Because of the minerals, gold, and silver; towns, mining camps, and settlements populated these remote regions – some very notable places like Creede, Lake City, Silverton, Ouray, and Telluride. Through time, the mining industry saw its boom and declines. Large scale mining is uneconomical in the area even though its still prospected by individuals and smaller mines. The mountains saw a major environmental disaster in the 1990’s when the Summitville mine saw leaking from its cyanide-laced tailing pond. The area also has many extinct volcanoe calderas such as Summitville and the large 35 mile diameter La Garita Caldera. The floors of the San Luis Valley below are scattered with large beds of lava towards its eastern slopes. The mountains are heavily frequented by outdoor recreationists and tourists – from archaeology, to history, hiking, jeeping, boating, fishing, skiing, mountain climbing, ghost towns, snow and water sports. The San Juans see the Rio Grande rising from its east side, and the continental divide on its western slopes, which are drained by tributaries of the San Miguel, Dolores, and Gunnison Rivers which all flow into the Colorado River. The National Forests nestling the mountains are the San Juan and Uncompahgre National Forests.
Paonia * Paonia, Colorado * Nestled along the San Juan mountains is the statutory Town of Paonia. Located along the North Fork River about 10 miles from Hotchkiss, Colorado by the head of the North Fork Valley. At the base of Mount Lamborn (peak: 11,397 ft) and the Grand Mesa. Its a small town of approximately 1,497 population (year 2000 census). The area was recorded first in 1853 by Captain John W. Gunnison of the U.S. Army while searching for a suitable pass through the Rocky Mountains. Originally inhabited by the Utes until 1880 until the Government closed the Ute Indian Reservation following the infamous Meeker Massacre. Samuel Wade and William Clark settled the area after accompanying Enos Hotchkiss to the region. They incorporated the town in 1902. The town was named after Wade’s derivative term for a flower called “peony”. The region is very popular for its earth based activities and festivities such as “Cherry Days” during the fourth of July week featuring parades, carnivals, games, music, arts, and crafts. September sees the “Mountain Harvest Festival” for three days in downtown featuring music, poetry, art, chili cook off, street dance, crafts, wine tasting, and classes on sustainable living. Dreamtime Festival has been hosted in the area since 2002 combining live performances, music, educational workshops, theme camps, and art installations. Rainbow Gatherings are also held often in the area since 1992. The region is frequently populated by earth based spirituality, “New Age” faiths, and modern day hippies.