Sunshine Mining & Milling Co.

View of the Sunhine Mill just south of Sunshine camp. c.1898

Location data

QUICK LOCATION PATH: Utah / Toele County / Mercur or Fairfield District / Sunshine Canyon / Sunshine Mine & Mill

Approx. G.P.S. Location:

40.16.405 N - 112.11.519 W  (topo)


Approx. Elevation:

6151'  (topo)


30 x 60 Minute Map:

Rush Valley, Utah


7.5 Minute Map:

Mercur, Utah


Brief history

  The Sunshine Mining & Milling Co. was the first mining company in the area to complete and operate a mill. A cyanide mill, the plant operated from December of 1895 to October 1896. Yielding about $7,000 in Gold, far less than was spent trying to get it. A second attempt, in 1898, proved unsuccessful, but a third, in 1902, was able to process several tons of ore that yielded around $70,000 in Gold Bullion.
In 1908, the company was purchased, and operated as the Boston-Sunshine Gold Mining Company. The mill was completely overhauled and in May of 1909 began treating more than 125 tons of ore daily. This pace continued until July of 1910 when the ore supply had been exhausted. Some 50,000 tons of ore was processed, yielding $141,000+ in total values. After deducting the milling costs and all expenses, the total dividends paid in this last effort came to just over $27,000.
It is estimated that the Sunshine mine produced over $220,000 in total values, most of that Gold.

Getting there

Once you reach the junction of dirt roads at Sunshine Camp, turn right (southeast) and proceed a short distance. The old dumps of the Boston-Sunshine mill are visible just off the road to your right.

What remains

The ore dump, broken timbers, bits of rusty metal, and a cement & re-bar enforced shaft collar is all that remains at the Sunshine Mining & Milling site.

Photo gallery

The following are all images of the Sunshine mill & vicinity. 



The Ore Deposits of Utah (1920) USGS Professional Paper 111, B.S. Butler, G.F. Loughlin, V.C. Heikes & others.

Additional writings:

R.W. Sloan in Mines, Miners, and minerals of Utah stated:


The property of this company is the pivotal point of all claims in the Sunshine portion of the Camp Floyd Mining District. To date it has the only mill outside of Mercur camp, though it is understood that the Overland Company has about concluded contracts for the erection of a mill to work the ores from the latter company's property.

This mine's workings and extraordinary developments are what have given encouragement and confidence to all other claims in its vicinity, the result being the exposure of ore bodies in the Overland, Red Cloud, Old Fred and other properties. It is believed that for the work done, the Sunshine has exposed larger bodies of ore than any other property in the district. Besides a superior hoist, the Sunshine has a mill with a crushing capacity of 300 tons daily and a vat or leaching capacity of 60 tons daily. This latter is to be increased so that the leaching output may be made 150 tons daily.

The extent of the ore bodies in this remarkable gold property will be better understood when the statement is made that all the ore so far produced and leached has been extracted in the course of development work and exploration that at no time has it been necessary to attack the ore bodies to supply the mill. In fact, the mill capacity could be largely increased and still be supplied by the driving of the inclines and levels alone without touching the ore bodies, save for the extension of the levels. In fact, practically all the workings are in ore, the present workings being for the sole purpose of ascertaining the boundaries of the ore body, which, up to the present time, have not been reached.

The property is developed by an incline 600 feet deep and by three levels beginning at a depth of 300 feet. These levels with slight upraises and winzes have developed the ore bodies in various directions to an extent of about 6,000 feet, not including the incline.

The Sunshine is a close corporation, nine-tenths of the stock still remaining in the possession of the original owners and no proposition for purchase (numbers having been made) will be considered. The officers are: J. E. Schwartz, of Philadelphia, President of the Pennsylvania Smelting Co., is president; W. A. Sherman, vice-president; F. H. Officer, secretary and treasurer; and C. H. Jacobs, manager."