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Our holdings include hundreds of glass and film negatives/transparencies that we've scanned ourselves; in addition, many other photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs) in the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) They are adjusted, restored and reworked by your webmaster in accordance with his aesthetic sensibilities before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here. All of these images (including "derivative works") are protected by copyright laws of the United States and other jurisdictions and may not be sold, reproduced or otherwise used for commercial purposes without permission.

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[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Sunnyside Mill: 1940

Sunnyside Mill: 1940

September 1940. Eureka, Colorado. "The Sunnyside mill, now abandoned. There is still gold ore here but the best has been taken out and now the lower grades which are expensive to process do not attract the mine and mill operators." Acetate negative by Russell Lee for the Farm Security Administration. View full size.

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I guess that would explain the closure

Thanks for the history. Wonder what it sounded like?

Where Shorpy leads

I was looking at the picture and wondering how the gold was processed when ManyBuicks mentioned the flotation method. Hmmm. Lookup gold and flotation leads to videos of small scale operations. Which leads to where did they get the water to run the mill. No visible pumps. Aha. They took water Lake Emma, above the site of Eureka which led to

An 'Oh Crap! moment' in Colorado mining history

All that's left (aerial view)

Photo via Google satellite.

Changing times

Back in 1940, gold sold for $35 an ounce. If the mining company could mine and refine it for less, they did. If it cost more, they didn't.

The production cost in 2018 is about $1250 an ounce.


The mill structure used the flotation process for extraction. Gravity played an important role in the multi-step operation, thus the hillside construction.

Mountain Mill only a Memory

Only the stair-step foundation remains in this recent Google photo.

SHORPY OLD PHOTO ARCHIVE | History in HD is a vintage photo archive featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1960s. (Available as fine-art prints from the Shorpy Archive.) The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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