Lush mountain setting surrounds the Lost Horse Mill (sometimes Dead
Horse Mill) near the ghost town of Crystal, Colorado. This building actually housed a power generator for the mill, which was standing next to it.
Correction: Many thanks to John Skuches who sent us the following information:
Crystal never had nor does it have now, electricity. The mill powered a mechanical air compressor for use in ore processing. The mill had a horizontal water wheel which turned a vertical shaft that ran up through that housing now held together by cables. It turned an air compressor that was used to operate the air drills for at least two of the local mines on the hill above the mill. The broken boards littering the river bank adjacent to the mill are from the stamp mill used to reduce and process the silver ore. I believe it may have also been directly powered by the water wheel as the two buildings were virtually connected.
The town of Crystal is 0.2 of a mile beyond the mill. It was founded in 1880 by prospectors. Seven working silver mines kept Crystal going, and by 1886, about four hundred people lived in the town that had two newspapers, two hotels, saloons, billiard parlor, barber shop, and the men-only Crystal Club (middle).
The 1893 silver crash nearly emptied the town, and by 1915 only eight people lived there.
Crystal today contains about a dozen old cabins and the Crystal Club.
The road to Crystal is 4WD only!