The Childs Power Plant

The Childs plant, located near the Verde River outlet of Fossil Creek. The Irving plant, located halfway between Childs and the Fossil Springs source, was constructed in 1916. The system of canyons and steep falls from the spring source to the Verde River outlet provided an ideal location for a hydroelectric plant. The constant flow of 43 cubic feet per second was also a factor in powering the plants through Fossil Springs. Once completed, the Childs plant produced 2.8 megawatts of electrical power.

When the Childs plant was built by the Arizona Power Company in 1908, they raised money through investment bonds sold by William Bonbright and Company. The Childs Plant was named for S. W. Childs, the Bonbright Company's bond-broker.

Arizona Power Company began construction of the Childs power plant in 1908. Because the land around Fossil Creek consists mainly of mountainous terrain and canyons, and the nearest railroad station was located in Mayer Arizona, more than 400 mules and 600 men were used to pull over 150 wagons along the 40 mile wagon trail. Other than the foreman and timekeeper, all of the workers were Apache and Mojave Indians, working for $2 per day. Once construction of the flume began, 120 to 150 feet were constructed on a daily basis, costing around $100 per day.

The water rights of Fossil Creek, located between Pine/Strawberry and Camp Verde, Arizona, were purchased in 1900 by rancher Lew Turner. His goal was to generate hydroelectric power for sale to mining communities in the Bradshaw Mountains and Black Hills in Yavapai County, such as Jerome, Clarkdale, Crown King and many others.

A peace of the old Flume

Old wooden window glass missing

The bridge over the turbine outlets at the Childs plant

Turbine outlets # 1 at the Childs plant

Turbine outlets # 3 at the Childs plant

power lines on Childs plant roof

I think this is for over flow water

Mike shooting photos inside one of the turbine outlets at the Childs plant

Looking inside one of the turbine outlets at the Childs plant

A turbine

Where the water came from

Turbine outlets # 2

Old door welded shut

The old employee homestead

Fallowing photo's below provided by Pine-Strawberry Museum

Located on Route 87 (Beeline Highway)

P.O. Box 564 • Pine, Arizona 85544
(928) 476-3547


The End

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It's scary just to look at the pics you have of turbine outlets.

I camped next to the plant for one night in the commune. This was 1996 and the machines were still humming at that time.

We walked back from the hot springs in a lightning storm and across the bridge.

I always wondered what was up inside. We swam in the outlet pool maybe 30 meters from the turbine outlets. The water was much colder in that pool compared to the river.

So, awesome pics! Brings back memories...