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The Standard Mill

Standard Mill in 2001 - Bodie.comHere the Standard mill, which processed ore from the Standard Mine (originally named the Bunker Hill mine in 1861 when it was first registered.) Most of the inner workings are still in tact, some of which the public can see during a guided mill tour. Rangers and Park Aides conduct a history talk and tour during the summer months. The tour is $5 per person, with a maximum of 20 people, and is about 30 minutes long. You can also book private group tours (there is a $50 minimum for private groups.)

In its heyday, the mill processed more than $14 million worth of gold and silver in 25 years. In 1898 the original mill burned down (it was built of mostly wood, while this one is framed in wood, but mostly covered with sheets of corrugated steel,) but was rebuilt by the following year.

Standard Mill in 1890s - Bodie.comIn the enlarged 2001 picture of the mill (above,) you can barely see a pole at the top of the hill. It is from that point on the hill, that Andrew Halliday designed and built an ingenious gondola system was used to carry ore from the mine to the mill. This saved dozens of horses and men literally hours worth of work for each load of ore that was to be delivered to the mill for processing. Gondolas would be loaded at the top of the hill, and run down a “never ending cable” to the mill, where the bottom would automatically opened to drop the ore out.

Another interesting note – according to state experts, this mill is the “most in tact” mill in California!

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