Gold Crown Mine (Dale Mining District)

 

Gold Crown Mine in 1936.

Gold Crown Mine in 1936.

 

The ruins of The Gold Crown Mine, and mill site are situated a few miles north of the Joshua Tree National Park boundary, in the Dale Mining District. Gold Crown Road (a decent, high clearance dirt road) crosses the Pinto Basin near Porcupine Wash, and leads up the Pinto Mountains to the site of the abandoned mining property. You can also access Gold Crown Road from Highway 62, near the settlement of Old Dale.

The Gold Crown Mine consisted of twenty-five claims, four of which were developed with shafts  from 100 to 600 feet in depth. In 1935 the Gold Crown Mining Company replaced their sixty-ton ball mill, installing a fifty-ton cyanide plant. The water for the mill was piped in from the well at New Dale. The mill was not only used for the companies milling purposes, but custom jobs for other mines in the district.

 

The steps to nowhere.

The steps to nowhere.

 

Cement block building.

Cement block building.

 

A look inside.

A look inside.

 

Oversized cans in the can dump.

Oversized cans in the can dump.

 

A piece of glass with a design, found near the can dump.

A piece of glass with a design, found near the can dump.

 

The mine operated from 1926 until 1938, and regularly employed thirty-five men. With the ore bodies depleted at the Gold Crown Mine, the mill was moved to the nearby Supply and Nightingale Mines.

Today the site of the Gold Crown Mine and Mill consists of dozens of concrete walls and foundations. For the most part the buildings that once stood are long gone, the few that remain, hang on by a shoe string. In a few instances, stairs lead to nowhere. Behind what I assume to have been the camp’s mess hall, is a large can dump consisting almost entirely of oversized/bulk food cans. The mill foundations are just a short distance southeast of the camp. Large, bulky concrete slabs are all that remain of the massive fifty-ton cyanide plant. The foundations alone, a testimony to the size of the beast that stood here.

 

Foundation of the fifty-ton cyanide mill.

Foundation of the fifty-ton cyanide mill.

 

Mill ruins.

Mill ruins.

 

Mill ruins.

Mill ruins.

 

Secret Places in the Mojave Desert Vol. 7

About the author

Jim Mattern

Jim is a scapegoat for the NPS, an author, adventurer, photographer, radio personality, guide, and location scout. His interests lie in Native American and cultural sites, ghost towns, mines, and natural wonders in the American Deserts.

  • Johnny Panic

    That glass design is an image of Massachusetts’s Old State House in Boston (built 1714), as viewed from Court St. I walk by it every day!