Wheel 1 Is Upright And Secure

Wheel 1 Is Upright And Secure

With the help of two cranes and a lot of man-power yesterday, Kennedy tailing Wheel number 1 has a new set of metal braces to rest on.  Working well into the night, the crews first lifted the wheel, estimated to weigh between 40 and 50 thousand pounds. Ground crews then removed the wooden braces that have held the wheel over the past 103 years, and replaced them with a metal pair.  By the end of a long day, Wheel 1 now stands upright and has been stabilized.   Designed by mechanical engineer James Spears, the Wheels lifted mine tailings from the Kennedy Mine stamp mill, to an impoundment dam constructed to prevent the tailings from reaching streams and creeks and polluting the valley floor.  The Kennedy mill, running to full 100-stamp capacity, produced approximately 850 tons of tailings every twenty-four hours.  Constructed in 1914, the wheels were originally covered in metal buildings, but were exposed to the elements in 1942 when the mine was closed and the buildings were removed for scrap metal. Today, only two of the original four tailing wheels still stand, Wheel 4 which was restored by the City of Jackson a few years back and now Wheel 1.  The tailing wheels were added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1981 in recognition of their significance to the hard rock mining in California and the Mother Lode.  If you would like to help in the continuing efforts to save the Kennedy Tailing Wheels, you can contribute by sending a check to: The Kennedy Mine Foundation, P.O. Box 684 Jackson, California  95642. 

 

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