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Mine Tales: Gold, copper were a find at Clifton-Morenci

Mine Tales: Gold, copper were a find at Clifton-Morenci

The Clifton-Morenci district was Arizona’s first major copper-producing region.

September 15, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Kofa Mountains gave area golden glow

Mine Tales: Kofa Mountains gave area golden glow

Hard work yielded high-grade gold ore in this Western Arizona mine. 

September 07, 2014 9:00 pm Photos

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Mine Tales: Notable labor strikes in Arizona history

Mine Tales: Notable labor strikes in Arizona history

Arizona's mining history marked by labor issues.

September 01, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Tungsten, once mined here, now an import

Mine Tales: Tungsten, once mined here, now an import

Tungsten’s hardness at elevated temperatures, tensile strength, corrosion resistance and good electrical and thermal conductivity make it a metal of choice used in industry. Tungsten has the highest melting point of all metals, at 6,170 degrees Fahrenheit (3,410 Celsius).

August 25, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Arizona has huge deposits of asbestos

Mine Tales: Arizona has huge deposits of asbestos

Asbestos mines were profitable before they were banned.

August 18, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Aravaipa district has rough history

Mine Tales: Aravaipa district has rough history

Mining district was tough to develop.

August 11, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Railroads spurred mining's growth in Arizona

Mine Tales: Railroads spurred mining's growth in Arizona

The tracks of the "iron horse" spread into many parts of Arizona.

July 27, 2014 10:00 pm Photos

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Mine Tales: Mules aided Grand Canyon's Grandview site

Mine Tales: Mules aided Grand Canyon's Grandview site

Grand Canyon's Grandview Mine produced 500,000 pounds of copper in its day.

July 21, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Orphan Mine faced many challenges

Mine Tales: Orphan Mine faced many challenges

Orphan Mine, in beautiful but isolated location, yielded high-grade uranium ore.

July 14, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Orphan mine yielded high-grade uranium

Mine Tales: Orphan mine yielded high-grade uranium

The Colorado Plateau is known for its abundance of radioactive minerals.

July 07, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Globe area produced wealth of copper

Mine Tales: Globe area produced wealth of copper

An area mine produced 800 million pounds of copper between 1882 and 1930.

June 30, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Super-productive mine, long closed, may soon reopen

Mine Tales: Super-productive mine, long closed, may soon reopen

The Silver Queen Ledge, near modern-day Superior including the Irene and Hub claims, was discovered in 1871 by prospectors in search of the nearby Silver King Mine.

June 16, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Silver King Mine lived up to its name

Mine Tales: Silver King Mine lived up to its name

Located three miles north of Superior in Pinal County, the Silver King Mine was once the richest silver mine in Arizona, producing high-grade silver along with smaller amounts of gold, copper, zinc and lead.

June 09, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: 'Comstock of Arizona' yielded millions in gold, silver

Mine Tales: 'Comstock of Arizona' yielded millions in gold, silver

While prospecting along the Hassayampa River in October 1863, Henry Wickenburg and several associates discovered a gold-bearing quartz outcrop 500 feet long, 400 feet wide and 100 feet tall.

June 02, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Gold-mining in Mohave County had its ups and downs

Mine Tales: Gold-mining in Mohave County had its ups and downs

The San Francisco Mining district, whose claim to fame was $34 million in gold production between 1870 and 1933, is located in the southern part of the Black Mountains in Mohave County.

May 26, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Frontier military forts protected Arizona miners

Mine Tales: Frontier military forts protected Arizona miners

Frontier military outposts in Arizona began with several early presidios established along the Santa Cruz River.

May 19, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: State's history of coal mining goes back at least 700 years

Mine Tales: State's history of coal mining goes back at least 700 years

People have mined coal in Arizona for at least 700 years, but today the only active mine in the state is the Kayenta Mine at the Black Mesa field on the Colorado Plateau in Northeastern Arizona.

May 12, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Huge haul trucks changed the face of the mining industry

Mine Tales: Huge haul trucks changed the face of the mining industry

The importance of haul trucks in the history of surface mining in Arizona cannot be overstated.

May 05, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Ore led to Jerome's boon, may aid city again

Mine Tales: Ore led to Jerome's boon, may aid city again

Jerome’s population reached 15,000 during the peak of mining operations during the 1920s.

April 28, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Tiny Jerome was once one of the world's biggest names in copper production

Mine Tales: Tiny Jerome was once one of the world's biggest names in copper production

Located 56 miles southwest of Flagstaff on the east slope of Mingus Mountain — a 1,750-million-year-old volcanic tuff — the town of Jerome and its surroundings were once known as one of the greatest copper-producing areas on the planet.

April 21, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: San Manuel was once world's largest underground copper mine

Mine Tales: San Manuel was once world's largest underground copper mine

Located in the Lower San Pedro River Basin 40 miles northeast of Tucson and a mile south of the Mammoth-St. Anthony Mine, the San Manuel area enticed 1880s prospectors attracted to the copper-stained exposures of Red Hill and other nearby localities.

April 14, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Operations at Silver Bell likely to continue for years

Mine Tales: Operations at Silver Bell likely to continue for years

Depressed copper prices in the 1920s and ’30s saw the eventual closure of mining operations in the Silver Bell district. The nearby Sasco smelter had shut down by 1921 and the Sasco townsite was abandoned.

April 07, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Silver Bell district yielded millions of pounds of copper

Mine Tales: Silver Bell district yielded millions of pounds of copper

The earliest recorded mine in the Silver Bell Mountains was the Old Boot Mine in 1865. The mine, later renamed the Mammoth Mine, was developed by prospectors and financed by a group of Tucson merchants including Zeckendorf and Steinfeld, who were drawn to the heavy, black garnet-stained rock…

March 31, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Though not exactly Texas, Arizona does have oil

Mine Tales: Though not exactly Texas, Arizona does have oil

Arizona, known for its abundant copper deposits, also hosts a modest amount of oil and helium deposits.

March 24, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Mine owner stirred up plenty of trouble

Mine Tales: Mine owner stirred up plenty of trouble

Located two miles southeast of Bisbee, the Irish Mag Mine — named after a Bisbee dance-hall girl — became known in 1899 as a large high-grade copper ore body.

March 17, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Nearby Empire Mountains home to 3 notable mines

Mine Tales: Nearby Empire Mountains home to 3 notable mines

The Empire Mountains, 30 miles southeast of Tucson and stretching northeast from the Santa Rita Mountains, include several well-known mining properties, including the Total Wreck Mine, the Montana Mine and the Hilton Group Mines.

March 10, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Steamboats boosted trade along 500-mile corridor

Mine Tales: Steamboats boosted trade along 500-mile corridor

Colorado River steamboat transportation made a significant impact in opening the Arizona Territory to commerce in the latter half of the 19th century.

March 03, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Planet copper mine one of Arizona's oldest

Mine Tales: Planet copper mine one of Arizona's oldest

The Planet Mine, located in the northwest corner of La Paz County in the Buckskin Mountains in central western Arizona, was prospected by Richard Ryland in 1863, and is one of the oldest copper mines discovered by and worked by Americans in Arizona.

February 24, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Bagdad's name a mystery, but its focus (copper) isn't

Mine Tales: Bagdad's name a mystery, but its focus (copper) isn't

The Bagdad Mine is a porphyry copper deposit containing both sulfide and oxide mineralization.

February 17, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Dedicated volunteers started gem, mineral show in the mid-'50s

Mine Tales: Dedicated volunteers started gem, mineral show in the mid-'50s

Modern mineral collecting has its roots in the 16th century. Georgius Agricola (1494-1555), a German scientist and father of mineralogy and mineral collecting, published “De Re Metallica,” a treatise on mining, and “De Natura Fossilium,” considered the earliest mineralogy textbook. At the ti…

February 03, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: At its height, Silver mining district boasted 60-plus mines

Mine Tales: At its height, Silver mining district boasted 60-plus mines

Located 25 miles north of Yuma in the barren, rocky Trigo Mountains, the Silver mining district was established after the railroad had reached Yuma in 1878.

January 27, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Lighting was key in the development of mining

Mine Tales: Lighting was key in the development of mining

Lighting has played a critical role in the safety of underground coal and metal mining for several thousand years. Challenges in an underground mine environment include dust, confined spaces, surfaces with low reflectivity and reduced visual contrast.

January 20, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Chiricahua Mountains yielded sought-after wulfenite

Mine Tales: Chiricahua Mountains yielded sought-after wulfenite

The first recorded mining claim in the Chiricahua Mountains was the Hidden Treasure, worked by Jack Dunn in early 1881. It later became part of the Hilltop Mine, the largest and most profitable mine in the Chiricahuas.

January 13, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Central Arizona mining district had big bugs, and big success

Mine Tales: Central Arizona mining district had big bugs, and big success

The Big Bug district is one of the earliest mining districts formed in Central Arizona. It was named after Big Bug Creek, which was home to plentiful walnut-size beetles and runs through the foothills of the Bradshaw Mountains southeast of Prescott.

January 06, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Congress Mine was golden goose

Mine Tales: Congress Mine was golden goose

What would become one of the most prosperous mining camps at the turn of the century was founded in southwestern Yavapai County by Dennis May on March 25, 1884, and several years later developed by the wealthy Mississippi steamboat operator Diamond Joe Reynolds.

December 30, 2013 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Christmas Mine got its name on the day of the holiday

Mine Tales: Christmas Mine got its name on the day of the holiday

The Banner Mining district covers a geographic area 15 miles long and seven miles wide, and its principal mine was the Christmas Mine.

December 23, 2013 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Trade tokens were used widely, but are rare today

Mine Tales: Trade tokens were used widely, but are rare today

Trade tokens have been used as far back as Roman times, and in the United States, as recently as in the era of mining towns. These unique pieces are rare and highly collectible.

December 09, 2013 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Miners discovered gold en route to California

Mine Tales: Miners discovered gold en route to California

Located in the Dragoon Mountains on Golden Rule Hill, the Golden Rule Mine was the primary metal mine in Cochise County’s Dragoon mining district. The Golden Rule Mining Company was the mine’s namesake, and one of the earliest companies involved in its development from 1883 through 1890.

December 02, 2013 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: High copper prices drove demand at Ajo mining district

Mine Tales: High copper prices drove demand at Ajo mining district

Editor’s note: This is the second in a two-part series on the Ajo mining district. To read the first part of this series go online to tinyurl.com/ajomine

November 25, 2013 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Remote Ajo yielded much valuable copper

Mine Tales: Remote Ajo yielded much valuable copper

Editor’s note: This is the first in a two-part series on the Ajo mining district.

November 18, 2013 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Ray mining district has history of more than a century

Mine Tales: Ray mining district has history of more than a century

Located between Winkelman and Superior along scenic Highway 177, the Ray mine has a history dating back 140 years.

November 11, 2013 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Copper isn't the only mineral common in Arizona

Mine Tales: Copper isn't the only mineral common in Arizona

In 2012, Arizona produced more than $2 billion in nonfuel mineral commodities. While Arizona leads the nation in copper production, additional minerals ranked according to value include molybdenum concentrates, sand and gravel (construction), cement (portland) and silver.

November 04, 2013 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: The ghost towns of Greaterville and Kentucky Camp

Mine Tales: The ghost towns of Greaterville and Kentucky Camp

Forty-five miles southeast of Tucson on the east slope of the Santa Rita Mountains are the Greaterville gold placers, discovered by A. Smith in 1874. The deposit, at 5,280-feet elevation, became the most sought-after placer deposit — or accumulation of valuable minerals — in Southern Arizona…

October 28, 2013 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Patagonia Mountains held more than 80 mining claims

Mine Tales: Patagonia Mountains held more than 80 mining claims

Early prospecting in the Patagonia mining district during the 1860s and ’70s was hindered by the threat of Apache raids. After the Apache were forcibly removed, the mining communities of Washington Camp and Duquesne were established a mile apart in the Patagonia Mountains.

October 21, 2013 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Hendy Iron Works made long-lasting mark on area

Mine Tales: Hendy Iron Works made long-lasting mark on area

One of the fringe benefits of hiking Arizona’s extensive mountain trail system is the opportunity to visit old mines and see abandoned mining equipment.

October 14, 2013 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Breathing devices were critical lifesaving tools

Mine Tales: Breathing devices were critical lifesaving tools

Breathing apparatuses were an important part of mine-rescue work beginning in the 1890s. Explosions, cave-ins, floods and fires were a constant threat in daily mining operations. Poor air quality resulting from such accidents led to fatalities on the job.

October 07, 2013 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Copper was — and is — a huge economic factor here

Mine Tales: Copper was — and is — a huge economic factor here

It would be difficult to overstate the importance of copper in the role of the economy of Arizona, where students used to learn about “The 5 C’s” — copper, cattle, cotton, citrus and climate.

September 30, 2013 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Pima Mining district grew from humble beginnings

Mine Tales: Pima Mining district grew from humble beginnings

Located 18 miles south of Tucson near the Sierrita Mountains and organized in 1877, the Pima Mining District had humble beginnings with several small mining camps.

September 23, 2013 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Rich Tombstone mines were a lure for prospectors

Mine Tales: Rich Tombstone mines were a lure for prospectors

Tombstone, renowned for its gunfights, gambling halls, brothels and bars, was a silver mining town of great wealth during the decade known as “The Roarin’ ’80s” in the 19th century.

September 16, 2013 12:00 am Photos

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Mine Tales: Transportation was a big issue in mining industry

Mine Tales: Transportation was a big issue in mining industry

Early methods of surface transportation in the history of mining in Arizona were an important step in establishing the vast enterprise that enriched the state’s economy with towns, roads and other improvements.

September 09, 2013 12:00 am Photos

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