The oldest continuously inhabited mining town in Arizona is probably one of the weirdest ghost towns we’ve ever visited. And we’ve visited quite a few.
Chloride is one of those ghost town that left us a little puzzled (actually, it’s the only one that has left us puzzled). It didn’t turn out as expected but we’re not really sure what to make of it. The current population of 352 seems to be a mix of retirees, laid-back business, families, and hippies? When we were in the general store, we were inundated with Boy Scouts –what? Here? In Chloride??
The town of Chloride was founded in 1863. Its name is derived from the silver chloride discovered by prospectors in the 1840s. The town of Chloride didn’t get its boom until the 1870s after a treaty with the Hualapai Indians was signed. Thus, mining became widespread and the town eventually grew to about 5,000 inhabitants. Perhaps it was due to the fire that burned down majority of the town or the rising costs of extracting silver ore but by 1917, the population had dwindled to 2,000. With WWII depleting manpower in the 1940s, Chloride became a ghost town.
I would joke that it looks like husband has been trying to cook again, but I may have used up that joke once or twice in the past. And I do have to give him credit for not burning down the house when he helped make bacon-wrapped, cream-cheese stuffed dates a few weeks ago.
Former gas station that is currently used as a residence.
These stores were closed when we arrived on a Saturday morning. I believe the hours are flexible, perhaps by appointment only? The highlight of the town is the only restaurant in town, Digger Dave’s. If we hadn’t eaten such a hearty (and free 😉 ) breakfast from the best hotel in Kingman, perhaps we would have lunched in Digger Dave’s.
Dollhouse sized ghost town just outside the tourist info store.
This is what happens after eating a free and hearty breakfast from a 2.5 star hotel (also known as the best hotel in Kingman). 😀
We did a little off-roading towards the mines on the road that leads towards the “Chloride Murals” by Roy Purcell. We didn’t have time to head all the way to the murals but we did get a good view of Chloride from the hills.
What a funny little ghost town!
Chloride Ghost Town Overview
- Address (main street): 4962 Tennessee Ave, Chloride, AZ
- Fees: FREE
- Access Difficulty: Easy dirt road to town from freeway, good for sedans. Dirt road towards mines requires high clearance vehicles.
- Usage: Moderate
- Pets allowed: Yes