Desert Gold Mining Days

About the Muralist
Dedication Date: February 21, 1998
Locaton: Joshua Park Mining Town

Prospectors and life-long friends Oran Booth and Bill Keys were an active part of desert gold mining in the 1900s in the Twentynine Palms area. Oran Booth arrived in 1928 and filed a claim on the site which became the Wall Street Mill. He also prospected in the Gold Park area and later worked the Paymaster Mine, a gift from his friend Keys. In 1933, he filed on the 80-acre homestead pictured in this mural, where he built a cabin and hand-dug a well. Bill Keys, who came here in 1910, was a cattleman, homesteader, assayer, and established over 30 mining claims in the area that is now Joshua Tree National Park. This 8- by 30-foot, three-dimensional mural depicts life on the mining frontier of the forgotten gold rush in the desert. Created by artists Terry Waite of Twentynine Palms, and John Whytock of Sugarloaf, CA, the mural adorns the Chamber of Commerce building on Mesquite Avenue, in the Joshua Park Mining Town & Art Community. Dedicated: February 21, 1998.

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