Welcome! We have a variety of books primarily pertaining to mining camps and abandoned towns throughout the West. Learn about mining rushes, transportation (roads, railroads, stagecoaches, early autos), and other factors that caused towns to spring up in specific locations. Find out what life was really like for the residents of these towns as they boomed and then slowly faded into ghost towns. Local newspapers covered gunfights, fires, mining disasters, blizzards, and mining frauds as well as the social activities that created a sense of community.
California has a rich history and a diversified landscape. We have publications on two areas, the Mother Lode and East of the Sierra Nevada, There are two publications for the Mother Lode. The first is Coloma, First Town of the Mountains, a monograph not only of the gold discovery that sparked the California Gold Rush, but of the town that grew because of the mining rush, A second publication covers the nearby towns of El Dorado and Diamond Springs. An upcoming issue will cover Blue Mountain City and Mitchell Mill. East of the mountains there are three publications on the area just east of Yosemite -- lofty Bennettville, Lundy in its beautiful canyon, and Shopkeepers and Shootists of Bodie, a main street guide to the famous ghost town that is now Bodie State Park. Further South, in Inyo County there is Darwin, a boom camp of 1877, and Skidoo!, a 1908 boom camp in a remote but accessible area of Death Valley National Park. Still further south, Alan Hensher’s Abandoned Settlements of the Eastern Mojave covers the history of the area south of Nipton, including Vanderbilt, Hart and the Lanfair Valley. Articles in early issues featured the quicksilver camp of New Almaden, the health resort at Bartlett Springs, and the collapse of the Deer Street bridge at Nevada City. If you have a particular interest and would like to help develop a publication on any other town in California that has an interesting history, please contact us.