View single post by Keith Pashina
 Posted: Sat May 6th, 2017 09:07 am
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Keith Pashina


Joined: Sun Nov 4th, 2012
Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota USA
Posts: 753
Well, it's been fun posting and sharing information about the Gilpin Tram. My previous posts discussed the mill machinery and what generally happened inside the Black Hawk Mills. Now, it's time to continue the intermittent journey down the Gilpin Tram. The previous posts left off at the Hidden Treasure Mill.

Following Clear Creek downstream, we encounter two more mills that were literally “just around the bend”.  From the Hidden Treasure Mill, the main trackage was dual gauge 2’ and 3’ all the way to the south end of Black Hawk. Along the route, there were some dual gauge side tracks, as well as individual 2’ gauge and 3’ gauge spurs.
The next mill that sat next to the Gilpin Tram was the Humphrey Concentrator. This mill seems to have followed a typical practice of the time in regards to milling machinery used in the mine. The 1890 Sanborn Fire Insurance Map refers to a rolls and crusher, sizing screens, 20 stamps, and revolving buddles.  There is not much information I could find out about this mill. The 1890 Sandborn Fire Insurance Map shows a spur from the Colorado Central 3’ gauge to this mill. The 1895 and later Sanborn maps don’t show this mill. Also, I could find no references to it receiving any ore from the Gilpin Tram or by other means. My opinion is this mill closed down probably by the turn of the century.

The Humphrey Mill (also called the Humphrey Concentrator) back when it was operating - not the steam exhaust from the roof vent pipe. Notice that big square stack - we'll see more of that later. This mill apparently never received any ore from the Gilpin Tram

This is the 1890 Sanborn Fire Insurance map showing the Humphrey Mill. Note the 3' gauge Colorado Central spur which served the mill at the time. This seems to have a been a very active mill operation at one time

Here is a later view looking upstream at a high-water Clear Creek, with the C&S bridge. By this time, the Gilpin Tram had shut down and the 2' dual gauge removed. The Humphrey Mill is at the right hand side of this photo. The mill looks inactive, and rather dilapidated by this time

By the 1980s, all that remained of the Humphrey was some foundations and the brick smokestack (which you could clearly see in the previous photos showing the mill when operating). The City of Black Hawk chose to remove this "eyesore" sometime in the 1990s, dug out part of the hillside, and used this space for parking for a while

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