Mono County Points of Interest

California Historic Point of Interest: June Lake Slot Machines 4 November 2012
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Legend of June Lake Slot Machines
Route 158 and Garbage Pit Road
June Lake

Legend of June Lake Slot Machines

During the 1930's, in central Mono County, demand for gaming entertainment skyrocketed with the influx of hundreds of employees working on the Mono Basin Project. To accommodate the workers, many local bars and cafes installed slot machines. Although illegal, there [sic] use in Mono County thrived for many years. Unfortunately, upon completion of the aqueduct in 1941 and transfer of all workers, demand for this activity diminished. Within a few years most slot machines were voluntarily removed. It was rumored that the last slot machines were hastily dumped into June Lake in the middle of the night by local merchants in response to an imminent raid by the State Revenue Agents. However, the legend of the slot machines did not end there. Over the years, numerous attempts to locate them by special cold water dive teams failed. Although no one has inserted a coin into one and pulled the handle, many people still gamble on hitting the jackpot and finding those "one armed bandits" at the bottom of June Lake, forever lost? Time will tell.

Dedicated September 11, 2010

Bodie Chapter No. 64
E Clampus Vitus

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