Sunday, October 27, 2013

Stamp Mills Still Existing in Arizona

Originally, Arizona had many working stamp mills that crushed ore for various metals. Many mills have disappeared because of metal scrapping or the cleaning up of old mine sites. Some have been removed and recycled for the World War II efforts. The mortar boxes were made from cast steel and weighed about 2 ½ tons and the stamps about 1,000 pounds apiece. These parts were important as they were melted down for the war effort. Among the stamp mills that have totally disappeared are the Phoenix Mine’s 100-stamp mill and the Vulture mine’s 60-stamp mill that crushed gold ore from the 1880’s through the 1920’s.

Some mills have incomplete information since I could not find where they were originally located. My requirements are that they do not have to be standing or running, but have enough parts left for a restoration to be made. I have made an effort to locate the remaining stamp mills, and believe I have found most of the mills left in Arizona. Much of the information has been acquired through discussions with the Forest Services, Arizona Geological Survey’s Phoenix Branch Office (previously Department of Mines & Mineral Resources), local historical organizations, and exploring the state. I have presently identified (22) stamp mills that are still in existence. If you know of any mills I missed, please comment at the end of this article.