Gold was discovered here in 1859 by Wm. S. Bodey, after whom the town was named, and the town became the most thriving metropolis of the Mono country. Bodie’s mines produced gold valued at more than 100 million dollars. Today a state park, Bodie is one of the best known of the west’s ‘ghost towns.’
It began as the county hospital in Bodie in 1879. With the decline of Bodie in the mid 1880’s the hospital was eventually moved to a site east of this monument and Highway 395 to the rear of the small meadow that you see. At that time it became known as the “Poor Farm,” a refuge for the aged, ill and penniless. It continued to operate for several years, but the high cost of maintaining the facility forced its closure and the buildings and property were put up for sale and sold to a local rancher.