[Not to be confused with Centerville in Douglas County]

Initial discoveries were made during spring 1871 by Samuel Jameson and E.G. DeMill, and the Queen Springs District was organized June 24 of that year. While a few prospectors arrived in the meantime, the camp of Centerville didn't form until mid-1872. In August, the Tehama Consolidated Silver Mining Company purchased the claims of Jameson & DeMill and started construction on a 20-stamp mill. The mill, which cost $75,000 and employed 50, was placed into operation in November, but soon failed due to a lack of millable ore. Nevertheless, Centerville had 75 residents and a 160-acre townsite was platted that same fall. Ore only occured on the surface, however, and didn't take long to run out. By 1874, Centerville was virtually abandoned and the failed mill was moved to Cherry Creek.

In spring 1881, Simon Davis of Aurum made a new discovery and Centerville was briefly revived. The El Capitan mine reopened and a 5-stamp mill placed into operation, but this short revival came to a close before the end of the year. Another revival began in 1903, but this led to the creation of a new camp: Siegel, about a mile away. Seven buildings remained at Centerville until the 1930s, when all but one were removed by the United States Forest Service.

See Also