Castle Dome City is a ghost town straight out of the 1800’s wild west that visitors can explore and experience in Yuma, Arizona complete with more than 50 historic buildings including saloons, machine shops, mercantile, doctor’s office, post office, land office, and more.
Castle Dome City was founded on the second mine to be patented in 1871 and was the longest working mine in Arizona, operational until 1979 when the price of silver ore dropped drastically. There are more than 300 mines in the Castle Dome District, all of which have been explored by the museum, with the town currently sitting on 3 patented mines—Floral Temple, Floral Temple Extension, and Castle Dome.
The Museum was opened in 1998 after Fish and Wildlife decided to remove what was left from the town that had been left abandoned for decades. A group of citizens formed a museum and asked permission to salvage everything that they could from the sites and acquired the buildings, artifacts, and manuscripts, as well and mine contents. The entire Castle Dome City was salvaged and restored. Recently, Hull Mine was also purchased and the museum has plans to expand 170 acres and eventually offer underground mine tours.
Castle Dome is an off the grid site; however, there are solar panels that power the RV sites for visiting families that need 30 amp electric sites. There is also a propane generated heater and refrigerator onsite. Volunteers dress up in period clothing and participate in reenactments while visitors are at Dome City. Volunteers are always needed.
Most of the artifacts in Castle Dome City, Ghost Town come from the Castle Dome City Mining District and were salvaged when the Fish and Wildlife Department decided to remove the abandoned mining sites.
The Stone Cabin Collection- This collection belonged to Flo and Billie, two sisters who ran the local café and gas station for over 30 years from 1953-1988. Included are artifacts such as tools, cars, an elevator, stamp mill, and several large mining tools.
Carmelita’s Cantina- The cantina features mining tables from the 1800’s thought to be the last primitive tales built by miners of the time. This mercantile still has canned foods from the 19th century Castle Dome.
Machine Shop- This unique building features the original 1905 lathe and shaver and saw shop with over 200 of the original saws used in the shop.
There are over 50 buildings total at Castle Dome City, others include:
· Adams Cabin
· Diggers Room
· Barber Shop
· Stone Cabin
· Blacksmith Shop
· Dress Shop
· 1960 trailer
· Fifties Diner
· Dentist Office
· Doctor Office
· Assay Shop
· Luman Walls Display Room
· Shoe Shop
· Photographer Cabin
· Post Office
· Bunkhouse Shower House
The Castle Dome Mining District is comprised of 300 mines that are 700 feet deep. There are 30 different minters found in the mines including silver. The town, Castle Dome City, sits on 3 patented mines including its namesake, Castle Dome. The museum has recently purchased Hull mine which includes a system of 10 patented mines.
Most of the artifacts that are in the Castle Dome City Museum were taken from the Castle Dome and Floral Temple Mines including the 1889 Levi’s, clothing, dynamite, rods, notes, canned goods, tools, ore cars, buckets, and glass bottle dating back to 1874. These mines were worked until the 1970’s.
The newly acquired Hull Mines were worked until 1990 and tied into the Railroad mine. Hull Mine is a rock mine with a depth of 750 feet. Inside this mine are 50 foot ceilings covered in cobalt blue fluoride crystals, silver galena, and stopes. The Museum is hoping to be able to offer underground mine tours of Hull Mines in the future. Work is also being done on the buildings at Hull Mines to shore up part of the mine.
Shopping, Dining, Lodging
When Visiting Castle Dome City in Yuma visitors will be able to visit many other attractions and have many other opportunities for shopping and dining along the Colorado River. At Castle Dome City, there are camping and RV electric sites that visitors are welcome to use for overnight stays, however, there are also several other nearby attractions and towns that visitors should consider for dining and lodging including:
· Los Algodones, Mexico- curio shops, pharmacies, restaurants, boutique shops, hotels
· Historic Downtown Yuma- Several shops and dining options from casual to 5 star, street fairs, live music, walk or drive!
· Hidden Shores RV Park- 625 premium RV full hook ups and a 20,000 sq ft club house with boat dock and rentals.
· Yuma Army Travel Camp- 102 camp sites, community recreation center, dance and exercise classes offered.
Castle Dome Mine Rd., Yuma, AZ, website, Phone: 928-920-3062
Back to: Yuma, AZ