the wandering chick
...the eastern Sierra Nevadas

Bodie, in the 1880s, was a thriving town of 10,000 people who came in search of gold after the decline of mining on the western side of the Sierras. Today, it's a ghost town, but one of the the best-preserved ghost towns in the United States.

Fire, time and the elements of weather have destroyed much of the town, but what is left takes you back to its heyday. Stark indications of life abound in curtains, tattered as they may be, still hanging in windows; a world globe, faded and bare of all print, in the window of the schoolhouse; tins and goods on the shelves of the general store.

Bodie was named after William S. Bodey who discovered gold there in 1859. The change in spelling was intentional by the citizens to assure the correct pronunciation.

Like many towns of those western days, Bodie had its fair share of wickedness and sin. It's said that one little girl wrote in her dairy, "Goodbye, God. I'm going to Bodie."

Today, the streets are quiet except for the visitors who perhaps hope the ghosts of the past remain in the long-empty houses and closed saloons.

The Bodie turn-off from Highway 395 is just south of Bridgeport. From there, a 13-mile dirt road leads to the ghost town.

along Highway 395, Bodie
bodie green street
The Methodist Church on Green Street
church exterior
interior of church
delapidated buildings unnamed
the mine
The buildings of the mine are considered too hazardous for the public. They can only be viewed from the town streets.
mine shaft
Parts of the mining works were brought over to an area where the public could view them.
overview of the town
original curtain in windows
miller house interior
miller house interior
miller house interior
Only one house is open to the public, the Miller house on Green Street. Tom Miller worked for the Mono Lake Railway and Lumber Company.
red barn
red barn
This old red barn is one of the last standing, but it's typical of the kind used throughout Bodie.
old car
buildings not known
general store interior
The Wheaton & Hollis Hotel, later used as an office building, then a boarding house.
The last man out may have turned the lights off, but he didn't clean out the General Store.
The school house
the museum
The red building was at one time a hote, then the post office. The brown was the Bodie Odd Fellows Lodge.
not named
This building was not named, but it was one of my favorites maybe because of its sad, lean-to disposition.
unnamed building
the firehouse
The firehouse. There were two major fires in Bodie which destroyed most of the buildings. The first was considered the big fire, on July 25, 1892. On June 23, 1932 a boy playing with matches started another.
Above: The barbershop and Below: the ice house and stables
the ice house and stables
the road to Bodie
From the road to Bodie you can see the Sierras and Mono Lake...
the road to bodie
sheep on the road to Bodie
...and if you're lucky, a flock of sheep.

To see more California or Highway 395 pages, return to the California home page.

the road to Bodie

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