Simply Nahala

Writer. Photographer. Soul Traveler.

Monday, August 3, 2015

Granite Ghost Town

Granite Ghost town is located 4 miles above present-day Philipsburg, Montana and was once a thriving 1890's silver boomtown. Not much remains of Granite except for the crumbling stamp mine, granite foundations, and a few buildings such as the Miner's Union Hall and the mine superintendent's house.

Miner's Union Hall

In 1865, Hector Horton first discovered silver on Granite Mountain. Then in the autumn of 1872, Eli Holland discovered the mine in Granite and found a small quantity of high quality ruby silver. The mine was relocated in 1875 and became the richest mine on earth, nicknamed "Montana's Silver Queen" during its hey day.

Hyde & Freychlang Bank. The only bank in Granite. 

The town eventually became a thriving city with more than 3,000 residents and many modern amenities such as a large Miner's Union Hall, the Granite Mountain Star newspaper, a library, a hospital, fire station, a school, churches, roller rink, a ball park, water system, a thriving red light district, 18 saloons, brothels, lodge halls, boarding houses, bath house, private homes as well as restaurants. There was no cemetery however, due to solid granite rock ground where a grave could not be dug. All of the bodies were placed in the Philipsburg Cemetery.

Mae Werning's Home. She was the last person to live in Granite, Montana.

During the silver panic of 1893, The Sherman Silver Purchase Act was repealed which drastically lowered the price of silver. Within 24 hours of the repeal, many Granite residents left many of their belongings and came down from the mountain town in search of new homes.

Main Street Ruins

The once bustling town in now quiet and uninhabited. Unlike Garnet Ghost Town, located approximately 30 miles away, the feel of Granite Ghost Town is not creepy but elegant. Much of the architecture was regal, while the mining shafts and structures were massive. The granite stonework is impressive. Granite, gold, sapphires, and other gems were discovered in Granite and are still being found today.

Miner's Union Hall

You need an AWD vehicle, pickup or 4 x 4 to navigate the windy mountain road that leads to Granite. You can make it in a car during the summer months if you take it slow. Granite Ghost Town State Park is open 5/1-9/30, daylight hours only. Daily entrance fee/vehicle is $0 for Montana residents or $6 for nonresidents. The daily entrance fee/walk-in or bicycle is $0 for Montana residents or $4 for nonresidents.

Below are some more photos from Granite Ghost Town

Miner's Union Hall

Giovanna at the Miner's Union Hall

Architectural Feature of Miner's Union Hall

Granite Mountain Wildflowers

Granite Mountain Mining Company. This 1885 two-story building was one of the first structures in Granite. The building housed the brick vault that is shown above. Men were paid entirely in silver coins

Granite Mountain Brickwork

Granite Mountain Forest

Stamp Mill Ruins. The Granite Mountain Mining Company contained Mill A and Mill B that housed the Ruby Shaft and a total of 70 stamp mills that crushed the ore so the silver could be separated from the base material. 

Stamp Mill Stone Work

Spectacular View From Stamp Mill



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