covered with a show
er of slingers and rocks."
Later, when part of the narrow-gauge railroad was to be exploded, the cap
didn't go off. UndauntedVisitor Control Station, Fielding grabbed a pistol and fired at the dynamite. The following
day, and old oil house near the smelter was also blown up as part of the bridge scene.
Today, there is
n't much left of the operation. Large black slag piles a
- Follow the re gradually
being hauled away from Grant County's driveways and highways. The "Big Ditch" i
filled with illegally dumped
- trasexit 152h. Rusted pipes protrude from the ground. Twisted iron
lies with scattered, broken brick.
The burned foundation of the old Continental Ore and Chemical Co. fluorspar concen-
tratorfrom Wold War
II rests on the ruins of the old Silver City Reduction Works.
A road towar
- d the sewer plant south of town leads right by the old operation. There's
not much to see. There are t
- he tailings, the slag, and with
- some imagination, there's
the old Silver City smelter.
The Silver City Smelter
Was Big Operation
Reduction Works South of Town
Once Employed More Than
- 00 Men and Women
Sit of 191
- 3 Silent Movie
By RICHARD PETERSON
Daily Press Writer
Ore was hand-picked f
- rom steam powered conveyer belts by men - and children.
The equipment was "the best known to metallurgical science." While families
- depended on the operation for a livelihood. And in 1913, a silent
- movie was filmed at the site by a prominent California movie company which later merged with Warner Brothers.
It was the Silver City Reduction Works, the pride of Silve
- r City and which fro a brief time was a boon to the economy, making mining in the Grant County possible in those early years.
60 years later, there is nothing left of the operation.
The Silver Ci
- ty Reduction Works went by several names before it was finally scaped.
- originally build by the Hearst family to handle gold and silver or.
- es hauled from their Pinos Altos mines.
This were difficult years for the op
- eration, and a final crunch came in 1902. The
plans was handling just about every ore it could get - custom smelting included. And that meant copper was among those ores. Copper, i
- n fact, was such a vital par
- Turn left (west) on t of the smelter's daily operations that depressed copper
- market conditions forced
a closure of the smelter.
That was in April. On June 30, 30, 1903, the plant caught fire and was leveled.
- Silver City's hopes were dashed since the whole operation was going
- to be sold and once again
put into productions.
The sale took place anyway, and Comanche Mining Smelting Co. was the new owner.
The reduction works were build on a large
- r scale.
In 1906, the newspaper had this to say:
"The big red building in which this ponderous machinery is housed is 72 feet high