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The discovery of silver, lead, and zinc in Thaynes Canyon spurred a flurry of activity in this corner of Park City in the late 1800s. The California and Comstock Mines snatched up most of the claims there, and soon miners’ shacks dotted the canyon’s hillsides. “In 1883 ... the campfires gave the place the appearance of an army encampment,” wrote John Mason Boutwell in 1912’s Geology and Ore Deposits of the Park City District, Utah. To eliminate the cost of transporting raw materials, known as ore, down to Park City, the owners of the California Mine purchased and relocated the old Apex Mill across the canyon to house on-site milling operations around 1900. Once in place, the building was outfitted with Wilfley tables (gravity-powered separation tables), a ball mill, huge power-generating boilers, and a small shop and office. The mine was renamed the California-Comstock Mine when the two companies merged in 1903, and the building was last remodeled and upgraded in 1917 by Solon Spiro. Its weathered skeleton, likely one of Park City’s most identifiable and beloved mining-era relics, still stands along Park City Mountain Resort’s Powerline Trail.

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