Plymouth

The first camp in the area, called Pokerville, came into being in 1852. Located about a mile below the current city, the camp was plagued by a lack of water and by 1855 miners moved up to the current site, establishing the new camp of Puckerville. Several claims were located, but none were particularly wealthy, thus Puckerville never experienced a large boom.

In 1871, Alvinza Hayward took an interest in the mines at Puckervilla, purchasing the Aden-Simpson mine. Hayward invested in a new stamp mill, bringing jobs and workers to Puckerville. By the end of the year, saloons, stores, and hotels had been constructed. When the post office opened, the name changed to Plymouth. The town was struck by its only notable fire in 1877 and largely destroyed, but quickly rebuilt. Plymouth reached its peak around then, though its population was still modest at around 800.

Meanwhile, Hayward continued to acquire and develop claims, and by 1878 his Phoenix mine (later renamed the Empire) was producing $30,000-$50,000 per month in gold ore. In 1883, the Empire was consolidated with a few other claims to form the Plymouth Consolidated mine. A mine fire in 1888 briefly closed the mine, which reopened in 1889, and closed again in 1892. It was reopened and developed once again in 1911, with a new 30-stamp mill constructed in 1914. The mine went into receivership, and was purchased in 1925 by the Argonaut Mining Company. It closed again in 1943 due to World War II, and saw its final operation from 1946-47. Total production was about $13.5 million.

With the intermittent closing and reopening of the Plymouth Consolidated mine, Plymouth's population waned, dropping to below 400. Today, the town is still small, and only a few remnants remain from its mining days; instead Plymouth is best known as the gateway to the Shenandoah Valley wine producing region.

I Visited Plymouth
9.10.2018

Bibliography