Digital-Desert : Mojave Desert
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Mining History: Desert Fever

San Bernardino County:

Slocum Camp-Opal Camp

Slocum Camp, near Copper City, derives its name from Dr. Samuel Slocum. Dr. Slocum and his wife lived at the mine during the winter of 1910, and they employed 5 miners. He was the general manager of the Desert Chief Mining and Milling Company which had done 2,000 feet of development work, sunk a 300 foot shaft, developed water and constructed 8 buildings which formed the camp. In June, 1911, the company began drilling the mine to determine how extensive the ore body was. Drilling continued through December, 1911. In November, 1916, the Barstow Printer indicated the mine was being worked for copper and molybdenum. However, the report continued, “During cessation of work for a short period, a blood-sucking low-lived vandal broker into the mine buildings and carried away at least one thousand dollars worth of equipment.”283

While the setback may have retarded activity at the mines, it didn't destroy the Slocum's interest in that area. As late as June, 1927, the Barstow Printer reported the Slocums came back to “do assessment at their opal mines." Doctor and Mrs. Slocum returned by auto to their home in Pasadena.” 284

These “opal mines” were not the same mines as those being mined for copper and molybdenum in 1916. As early as 1910, opal mines in the vicinity were owned and worked by the American Opal Company. Three men were working there in September of 1910, and a shipment had recently been made to Pasadena where the stones were dressed. Mr. Archibald Ferguson of Pasadena came onto the mine from time to time to supervise operations. Work continued at a steady clip at least through the spring of 1912. 285

In August, 1911, F. M. “Shady” Myrick, a resident of Johannesburg (and no relationship to David F. Myrick), discovered agate with bright red inclusions. This stone, dubbed “myrickite,” was found near Myrick Springs, now inside Fort Irwin. 286



ecology: wildlife - plants - geography: places - MAPS - roads & trails: route 66 - old west - communities - weather - glossary
ghost towns - gold mines - parks & public lands: wilderness - native culture - history - geology: natural features - comments

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