high on the eastern slopes of the Sierra Nevada mountains in California.
The town of Bodie is named after Waterman S. Bodey who in 1859 discovered
gold. In 1879, the population had grown to some 10,000 and Bodie was regarded
as one of the wickedest towns in the new west.
It boasted 65 saloons that helped to slake the thirst of the miners after a hard days toil in the mines. * The Reverend F.M. Warrington saw it in 1881 as "a sea of sin, lashed by the tempests of lust and passion". A young girl, whose family were taking her to the remote and famous town wrote in her diary: "Goodbye God, I'm going to Bodie."
So the gold was slowly removed and the town gradually became abandoned with the last inhabitants moving out in the late 1930's. In 1962 it became a state historic park.
Bodie though has a preserved casino. 2 Roulette and what we presume was a Faro game. The tables are to be seen in all their dust covered glory in the old Sam Leon Bar.
The town is maintained in what is a called a state of "arrested decay" and lies around 15 miles from Bridgeport. At an altitude of 9,000 ft the park service recommend summer visits.
More information from:
The Friends of Bodie
Post Box 515
* Extracts from the
California State Parks brochure