Salvage and Rescue
Taking apart the old 20-stamp mill and the tall building housing it took 30 days. To enable access, the old road built about the turn of the century (in Bland, NM), had to be re-opened using a 930 Cat front-end loader.
The crew that camped on the site and “busted their butts” to accomplish the job were as follows:
Larry Hedrick and son Chris; Bob Schoose and sons Mark and Zach; camp cook Virgil Worth; Hank Brown; Ed Johnson; Jay Zingler; Ray Girten; and Salvador Delgadillio.
They related that 14-hour days were the norm.
According to Larry Hedrick, “Safety was paramount. As each key was removed, we would all rush for our cameras, fully expecting the entire building to come crashing down around our ears.
It was hard, dangerous work. But the men who constructed the mill were master craftsmen; from the hand-fitted joints to the wooden dowel pins, the building hung together until the last spike was pulled.”
Five truckloads of more than 70 tons of mill materials were removed and hauled 500 miles to Apache Junction.
The mill itself and the lumber from the building housing it were donated by Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Jones of Albuquerque, NM.
The deal was that the stamp mill went to the museum, where it began to be reconstructed, and the 100-year-old virgin cut wood timbers were used in the construction at Goldfield Ghost Town.
An amazing thing about this donation is that the entire operation is virtually identical to the mill built by Charles Hall about 1892 in the original Goldfield, Arizona, located very near our museum site.