Near Cartago in Inyo County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)
Cottonwood Charcoal Kilns
In June 1873 Colonel Sherman Stevens built a sawmill and flume on Cottonwood Creek high in the Sierras directly west of this spot. The flume connected with the Los Angeles Bullion Road. The lumber from the flume was used for timbering in the mine and buildings, and the wood was turned into charcoal in these kilns, then hauled to Steven's Wharf east of here on Owens Lake. There it was put on the Steamer "Bessie Brady," or the "Mollie Stevens," hailed directly across the lake, and from there wagons tool it up the "Yellow Grade" to Cerro Gordo Mine high in the Inyo Mountains above Keeler. M. W. Belshaw's Furnaces had used all available wood around the Cerro Gordo and the charcoal was necessary to continue production.
The bullion which was then taken out by the reverse of this route was hauled to Los Angeles on Remi Nadeau's 14, 16, 18 animal freight wagons and played a major part in the building of that little pueblo unto the city it is today.
Erected 1955 by California Eastern Sierra Museum Association. (Marker Number 537.)
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed Industry & Commerce • Natural Resources • Notable Places. In addition, it is included in the California Historical Landmarks series list. A significant historical month for this entry is June 1873.
Location. Marker is missing. It was located near 36° 24.912′ N, 118° 0.722′ W. Marker was near Cartago, California, in Inyo County. Marker was on U.S. 395, one mile east of U.S. 395, on the left when traveling east. Located 1.0 mi E of State Hwy 395 (P.M. 44.5), 7.0 mi N of Cartago on an unnamed dirt road. Look for the historical marker road sign before the turnoff. Touch for map. Marker was in this post office area: Olancha CA 93549, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 10 miles of this location, measured as the crow flies. A different marker also named Cottonwood Charcoal Kilns (approx. 0.9 miles away); Cartago Boat Landing (approx. 6.9 miles away); Gifts of Rock and Water (approx. 8.6 miles away); Traces of the Past (approx. 8.7 miles away); New Water, New Life (approx. 8.8 miles away); Keeler Then to NowKeeler (approx. 9.2 miles away); Owens Lake Dust Mitigation Program (approx. 9.3 miles away).
More about this marker. It is reported that the marker was stolen in 1970, but then later recovered by the Inyo County Sheriff's Department. It was re-dedicated by the Slim Princess Chapter No.395, E. Clampus Vitus near the intersection of this dirt road and Hwy 395.
This site was designated as California Registered Historical Landmark No.537 on September 14, 1955.
Also see . . . Cottonwood Charcoal Kilns - Waymarking Post. This posting on waymarking.com shows the marker at its new site .9 miles west, near Hwy 395. (Submitted on August 2, 2010.)
Credits. This page was last revised on August 20, 2023. It was originally submitted on August 1, 2010, by Eric Polk of Lakewood, California. This page has been viewed 2,063 times since then and 81 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on August 1, 2010, by Eric Polk of Lakewood, California. 3. submitted on August 2, 2010. 4. submitted on March 1, 2013, by Denise Boose of Tehachapi, California. • Syd Whittle was the editor who published this page.