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The Abandoned Magnolia Mill Is Rich With Colorado Mining History

Colorado has a rich history in mining. Many a town and camp sprang up with the hint of fortune and faded away years or even months later when that dream of a fortune dried up. Hundreds of such remains of ghost towns and mining remnants lie scattered throughout the Rocky Mountains. While most of these locations have been lost to time or succumbed to the elements, there is one place that is far and away one of the most majestic and beautiful testaments to Colorado’s mining past.

Overlooking the beautiful Montgomery Reservoir, the Magnolia Mill is a silent reminder of the once bustling community that lived here. The town of Montgomery was built in 1861 to house miners and mill workers of the surrounding mines. Montgomery once housed over 1,000 residents, and boasted hotels, sawmills and the largest dance hall in the region. The townsfolk of Montgomery even named the nearby 14,000ft peak Mt. Lincoln, in honor of the nation’s President at the time; they even sent him a bar of gold from the Montgomery Mine!

Unfortunately for intrepid explorers who desires to see the Magnolia, the Mill was closed off from entry in 2015. We hope that someday, this magnificent piece of Colorado history will be visible again to the public. Until that happens, there are some excellent hiking trails in the nearby area where you will be greeted by breathtaking views of the Rocky Mountains, making this a great spot for a hike or day trip.

Note: Trespassing at the Magnolia Mill can land you in legal trouble and fines. Old and abandoned places like this are often closed to the public when they become dangerous for visitors. Please respect posted warnings; be safe!

To see more of photographer Daniel McAdams’ amazing work, check out his photo collections from the Colorado ghost towns of Last Chance and Model 1913, as well as his visit to an incredible underground Titan Missile Silo!