BUILT in 1902, this mill represented a state of the art gold extraction facility, which processed gold ore from several veins found in the Wallstreet area.  The imposing tower seen here was a storage bin where finely crushed ore was cooled after having been roasted, a process required to oxidize the gold-bearing minerals thus allowing the gold to be extracted.  As the ore cooled, air and chlorine gas were funneled through to further digest it.  Next, conveyors transported the ore to leaching tanks, where soda ash,
sodium chloride (salt), then sodium cyanide were added, dissolving the gold into solution.  These tanks sat on the lower foundations to the right of the tower.  The gold-bearing leach liquor was then pumped one level above, where an electrolytic process caused precipitation of the gold, which was then refined into bullion.

Poor management of the Wallstreet mines and mill resulted in the mill's closure in 1905.  The mines continued to operate until they were shut down by the Gold Mine Closing Order during World War II (in 1942), or later by closure of the Golden Cycle mill in Colorado Springs, in the early sixties.  most deposits were never completely mined, however, with much gold and silver remaining in them to this day.

This mill site represents a valuable piece of Colorado history, which will hopefully one day be properly preserved.  In the meantime however, it is both HAZARDOUS and DANGEROUS.  Do not trespass beyond the fence, enter or climb upon the tower!  People interested in learning more about the mining history of the Wallstreet area should obtain a copy of the book entitled, God's Country U.S.A..

Written by Delores S. Bailey, who lives in the stone house beside the mill site.


This page was updated on April 12, 2015

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