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Welcome to Bodie, WA, population: zero | by Dave Ward Photography
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Welcome to Bodie, WA, population: zero

The first town of Bodie, Washington was started by prospectors at the mouth of Bodie Creek, about a mile south of here in 1896. There was a general store, a restaurant, a livery barn, blacksmith shop and many homes, all made of logs. The town was moved to this location when gold was discovered near here. A sawmill was also moved to this site, so nearly all the buildings were made of cut lumber.

 

The mine changed hands several times and was owned from 1902 until 1911 by the Wrigley brothers of chewing gum fame. The mine was operated successfully until 1917, but then was idle until 1934. At that time the mill machinery was replaced and the buildings were restored.

 

Total mine production from 1903 until 1940 was $1.3 million.

 

Today Bodie's abandoned buildings stand as a classic ghost town. I was deeply creeped-out while photographing the location; it was much more genuinely haunting than I had anticipated or been prepared for.

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Taken on September 2, 2007