Latitude / Longitude:
5,203 ft (1,586 m)
Mountain (MST) (UTC-7)
Wickes is a ghost town in Jefferson County, Montana, United States located about five miles west of Jefferson City, Montana, and can be reached from the I 15 Jefferson city intersection and following Corbin Road until it intersects into Wickes Road at the old Corbin townsite, which is itself a historic mining community.
The silver mines around Wickes were among the earliest developed in Montana. The first mine, the Gregory, was located by an unknown prospector in 1864 and was the site of the second silver smelter built in Montana in 1867. Discovered in 1869, the Alta proved to be one of the richest silver mines in Montana. In 1876, its original owners sold the property to a group of New York capitalists head by William W. Wickes. The cartel organized the Montana Company that same year and platted the community of Wickes in either 1876 or 1877. The camp had around 400 residents by 1880.
One of the beehive-shaped charcoal kilns is still in good condition – the others have been partially razed. There are still a few standing structures on Wickes’ Main Street (only one dates to before the 1901 fire); even more foundations mark the presence of other structures in the camp.
The community of Wickes was a booming, although atypically quiet, mining camp by mid-1880. The Weekly Herald reported that: “No liquor is allowed in the camp, and any employee who becomes intoxicated loses his place at once. The consequence is that but a small part of the dissipated element which is ordinarily found in a mining settlement of this kind is represented here.”