Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Randsburg, CA - Part 1 of 4: The Beginning

I recently took a trip to Randsburg, a town known as "A Living Ghost Town". I had driven through there about two years ago and vowed to go back as soon as possible to take as many pictures as I could. I took about 150 pictures and in the next four days you will see 48 of them. ENJOY!

Randsburg is located in Kern County, California. It is on the west side of U.S. Route 395 between Kramer Junction to the south and Ridgecrest to the north. Randsburg is in the Rand Mountains, and is separated by a ridge from the neighboring community of Johannesburg. As of the census of 2000, the population was 77. I don't know what the population is now.

The Rand Mining Company. A Subsidiary of Glamis Gold, Inc - Rand Mining Company is dedicated to being a long-term producer of gold in the most safe, profitable and environmentally sound manner for our shareholders, employees and communities.

You can see these types of mine shaft cabins all over the mountains.

What is left of wooden mine buildings after decades of deterioration.

A view looking down on Randsburg and the Mojave Desert.

One of the roads leading into town.

This is definitely the place to buy some mining artifacts.

Gold was discovered on the slope of Rand Mountain in 1895. From this discovery, the town of Randsburg sprang up almost overnight. By 1899, the town had over 3500 residents. Randsburg boasted a 100-stamp mill and conservative estimates are that $60, 000,000 in gold was taken out of the mines in the area during the town's boom years.

From 1895 till about 1933, the Yellow Aster mine produced almost $25,000,000 worth of gold at the old gold prices of about $20.00 per ounce. The Jail (pictured) and White House Saloon (you'll see this place in Part 4) were host to many a miner, cowboy, farmer, indian and clamper during the peak of the mining period.

The Old Desert Museum.

Randsburg Fire Department Station 75.

Randsburg United Methodist Church. Built in 1934-35.

Tomorrow PART 2: The Houses of Randsburg - If anyone has more information on any of these pictures, please don't hesitate to contact me. I will use it to update this post.


Keith said...

Wow! These are awesome. I love them. I can't wait to see more of these pictures. These are great. I've never seen anything quite like this before except maybe in movies. I do love seeing all those old mining towns, etc.

Major Pepperidge said...

So neat. When I was a kid I had a map of California ghost towns and abandoned gold mines (think I bought it at Knott's), and I dreamed of visiting all of them. My family went to Bodie when I was a kid, and I remember watching people carrying off bottles and stuff even though there were signs telling them not to.

Gunnar and Sherry said...

I love places like this! Great!

Viewliner Ltd. said...

Absolutely one of the coolest places, I have ever been to.