Silver City Ghost Town is about 70 miles southwest of Boise, and is a partially-restored 19th century abandoned mining town, which once found fortune with gold and silver. There are around 70 buildings that are still standing. At its height, Silver City boasted a population of just over 2,500 people.
Gold and silver was discovered in 1863, which attracted hundreds of miners who flooded the area with mining claims. Thus, the town was founded in 1864 and loads of businesses followed suit. There were once 8 saloons, 6 general stores and even a hospital. Today, visitors can walk around and imagine what life was like over 150 years ago.
"Silver City, Idaho is one of the few old mining towns that did not burn down or become commercialized into a modern city. Visiting Silver City is like going back into history. The Idaho Hotel is as it was 100 years ago with a few modern amenities. Sinker Creek Outfitters will provide you with a historic ride back into history on horse back exploring the Owyhee Mountains, Silver City, Empire City, Ruby City and more. At Pat's What Not Shop, books, souvenirs, local mineral samples are available." - Historic Silver City Idaho
The Owyhee Mountains play host to Silver City's primitive campground, which is open from Memorial Day weekend til November. Once the snow comes however, the only way you can access the Silver City is by snowmobile, skiing or snowshoeing. Also, be warned that the water that runs through Jordan Creek may have high levels of mercury, due to the years of mining that occurred in the area.
"Almost a dozen cemeteries and many more remote burial sites attest to the hard and sometimes dangerous and violent lives led by many. Hundreds of mines pock-mark and honeycomb the mountains; one had upwards of seventy miles of tunnels laboriously hand-dug through it. Between 1863 and 1865, more than two hundred and fifty mines were in operation and hundreds more were developed thereafter. Through the seventy-odd years of mining, more than twelve ore-processing mills gleaned rich rewards in tons of gold and silver. Large stacks of gold and silver ingots were photographed for posterity. At the very least, sixty million dollars worth of precious metals were taken from the area. At today's prices, that amount would be even more impressive. At the present time, there are no major mines operating in the area. The De Lamar Silver Mine began operation in 1977, shut down in 2000, and is one of the largest open pit gold and silver mines in the U.S. Today 4 businesses are open in Silver City. The historic Idaho Hotel, Sinker Creek Outfitter's, Pat's What Not Shop and Silver City Fire & Rescue Store. Each has a link on the left side of this page to take you to their respective pages. Also visit ghosttowns.com for more information on Silver City, Idaho and surrounding mining and ghost towns." -Historic Silver City Idaho