Georgetown Lake Camping Finale - Southern Cross Ghost Town/St. Timothy's Memorial Chapel

October 29, 2023  •  Leave a Comment

Sunday morning before we were to be outta the campground we got our coffee and headed up another mountain to see another "ghost town" (basically two buildings left with No Trespassing/Keep Out signs everywhere so I photographed from the road).   Honestly it was kinda a "non-starter" but the views were lovely and it was like 10 minutes from camp.   The other surprise up there was St. Timothy's Chapel.  A lovely chapel built on the mountains.    Again I wouldn't make the trip unless you maybe want to attend services or one of the events at the chapel especially since it is so un-welcoming!

Southern Cross information from Ghost Towns and History of MT:

     Tucked in on a mountainside overlooking Georgetown Lake (former mining camp of Georgetown) lies Southern Cross. Possibly named by a sailor for the constellation, Southern Cross was developed in the 1870s although gold was first discovered in 1866. Owner Salton Cameron began to develop the property sending the first ore to East Helena for processing. Cameron then built a stamp mill in 1884 which was almost immediately shut down after proving unsuccessful. The mine switched hands and produced 30,000 tons of ore that was treated in Anaconda.

​     In 1906 the property changed hands again and a wet-crushing mill was installed. The Anaconda Copper Mining Company purchased the mine in 1910 and extended their railroad from Brown’s siding to the mine. The mine was estimated to have produced $5 million in precious metals.

​     In its heyday the camp reached a population of 500 including many Finnish and Swedish miners. Buildings included boarding houses, stores, a dance hall, saunas, a post office and a school. The Southern Cross mine was active every year between 1909 and 1930 and intermittently until 1940.

Another website with a bit more information on Southern Cross is HERE!

And some information on St. Timothy's from their website:

St. Timothy’s Memorial Chapel, an ecumenical ministry high above Georgetown Lake, is affiliated with the Presbyterian Church U.S.A.

The chapel was dedicated in and gifted to the Yellowstone Presbytery in 1965, by the Crete Dillon and John W. Bowman family of Sterling, Illinois, to the glory of God, and in remembrance of their son, Timothy Dillon Bowman, who died in 1956 at the age of eighteen. St. Timothy’s Memorial Chapel was constructed on a hillside six hundred feet above Georgetown Lake, at the ghost town of Southern Cross, near Anaconda, Montana.

Overall the camping trip was pretty freaking awesome as all of them are.   One more nice day of exploring would have been fun but as always it is also nice to come home.   The dogs were happy to have space again since being outside where we were camping wasn't much of an option as it was just too cold and not sunny.   We got a couple walks in but for them I think they were happy to be home.    I do so look forward to more camping in this area next year though and exploring some more!  Woot!


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