Visitors are safe and welcome at our museums. Please for details and tickets. Mining in all its phases remained the great engine of the Colorado economy until the early twentieth century. Moreover, the powerful advance of industrial metal mining, coupled with immense coal production, contributed immeasurably to state, national, and international development.
This document provides a basic historical overview of mining activities and related technology in order to assist cultural resource professionals, landowners and managers, and the general public in identifying and evaluating mining and mining-related properties in relation to the eligibility criteria established by the National Register of Historic Places.
The document focuses on the three closely related mining industries-precious and base metals, coal, and industrial metals. The geographic area includes the entire State of Colorado, although mining activities, particularly of metal ores, occurred primarily in the mountainous western half of the state.
The development of railroad transportation is also discussed, as railro and mining grew, prospered, and declined in a symbiotic relationship. The following properties currently listed on the National Register are formally linked to this multiple property submission. The property illustrates the extreme conditions of altitude, climate, and isolation faced by mining operations in the area.
Dating to the s, the Crescent Moly Mine and Mining Camp are associated with the Molybdenum boom and the Climax mine phenomenon. The Gold Prince Mine, Mill, and Aerial Tramway is a representative large-scale industrial mining and milling complex from the principal period of hard-rock mining in Colorado. All date from the s and are constructed of hand hewn logs with A and V ts. Low pitch gabled roofs were made of logs, mud, dirt, and grass.
Inthe Smuggler was among the first strikes made by Charles Bennett when he and other Leadville miners first came to the Roaring Fork Valley, and the Smuggler Mining Company was incorporated in November Begun inthe Argo Tunnel extends approximately five miles toward Central City at an average depth of 1, feet.
The mill was important to western Boulder County, contributing to a highly productive tungsten ore operation until The complex includes a ton flotation mill, the mine tunnel, several associated buildings, and the ruins of several buildings that were destroyed by the county's deadliest avalanche in The Independence Mine and Mill is located on the south slope of Battle Mountain at an altitude of approximately 9, feet.
The most intensive period of development of the mine coincided with the repeal of the Sherman Silver Purchase Act and the restoration of the gold standard of currency.
Located on Republican Mountain, midway between Georgetown and Silver Plume, the facility was a key component in the early development and prosperity of Georgetown. This concentration mill of wood and metal reaches four stories in height.
The uppermost story of hewn logs received the ore.
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Here gravity bins held the ore until it was fed into a crusher and the stamping apparatus below. The Paris Mill is ificant in the area of industry, engineering and architecture, from when it first opened, towhen mill operations ceased. The facility was instrumental in the success of the greater Paris Mine, a major gold producer important to western Park County. The Rocky Mountain Mammoth Mine is ificant for its association with the mining industry in the mountains of Boulder County.
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As a telluride gold ore producing mine, the Rocky Mountain Mammoth contributed to a major mining revival experienced in the Magnolia Mining district and elsewhere in Boulder County in the late s and early s. The Valley View Leasing and Mining Company Mill, commonly known as the Matterhorn Mill, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places under Criterion A in the area of industry at the local level of ificance for its contribution to the 20th-century silver mining in Colorado's San Juan Mountains where it related directly to mining within San Bernardo Mountain.
When constructed the Matterhorn Mill was a state-of-the-art flotation mill that utilized new technology to produce a higher grade concentrate than could be accomplished by the old-style stamp mill with concentration s. Completed inthe brick and tile smokestack reaches a height of feet.
Its concrete foundation extends 30 feet into the ground. Ditches, ponds, and tailings piles continue to dot the landscape. Inthe large two-story Lafayette House opened its doors for business, accepting both overnight guests and boarders. The complex displays the development of industrialized hard rock mining and the transportation infrastructure needed to make such mining profitable in a rugged region. The Martin Mining Complex is representative of the boom and bust cycle that was always present with industrialized mining.
The Martin Boardinghouse is one of the best-preserved and largest boardinghouses still standing in the San Juan Mountains. More precisely, the Martin Boardinghouse can be cal.
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Constructed circathe house is associated with Mary Miller, the founder of the town of Lafayette. Incoal was discovered on the acre Miller farm.
The circa Minnie Gulch Cabins site, including the cabins, dugout, and associated artifact scatters, represent a typical small residential and industrial complex associated with nearby mining during the turn of the 20th Century. Intact groupings of this sort from the hard-rock mining period in Colorado are unusual.
The building originally had private living quarters, a kitchen, dining room and large storage room on the first floor with benches and individual beds on the second. An adit to the Prospect Mine is just down the slope from the boarding house and the Gold Prince aerial tramway passes through this site. The inn originally functioned as part of the model community built by John C. Osgood for the workers associated with his nearby coke producing and coal mining operations.
Situated in the heart of the San Juan Mountains, Animas Forks is a historic abandoned mining town established in Although little remains today, the camp site is representative of the boom and bust cycles typical of many Colorado mining communities.
The site consists of four recognizable cabin ruins that were built starting in approximately in answer to a promising silver strike. The cluster of log cabins and cabin ruins remaining on the site are associated with early mining history in the Upper Roaring Fork area of eastern Pitkin County.
Little Rome is the site of an historic mining camp that was occupied by Italian immigrants who worked at the Ute-Ulay Mine and Mill from to A silver strike in prompted the arrival of prospectors and entrepreneurs such as Benjamin F. Burnett and William Baker from Fort Collins. The acre parcel comprises the site of the Ludlow tent colony and represents the event known as the Ludlow Massacre.
Located eight miles from the Arkansas River, the camp is associated with early mining history in the Clear Creek Canyon area. The townsite is ificant as the remains of a prosperous Roaring Fork Valley mining camp of the s.
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Originally known as Castle Forks, the town of Ashcroft was incorporated in Its peak population of approximately 1, supported a variety of commercial enterprises. Located in the Rocky Mountains approximately miles west of Denver, Breckenridge is an example of a mining boom town that experienced a new era of prosperity as a result of the post World War II boom in the ski industry.
Settlement in the area began in Were it not for the discovery of gold inthere is hardly a more unlikely location for the establishment of a "boomtown" than the rugged and inhospitable terrain of the surrounding mountainsides. Cokedale is a ificant example of a company-owned coal camp and is associated with the coal mining and coke industry that served as the predominant basis of the southern Colorado economy around While most similar coal camps were dismantled as mines ceased operation in the Las Animas-Huerfano district beginning after World War I, Cokedale continued to thrive as a company town until Settlers looking for precious metals were in the area as early as As the of mining camps grew, Crested Butte thrived as a supply center, and the town was incorporated in As the gold and silver played out, the mining of nearby high quality bituminous coal supported the economy.
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At its peak, there were over five hundred mines. The district consists of 86 contributing buildings which collectively reflect the late 19th- and early 20th century history and architecture of the downtown area. Since its founding in the early s, with the arrival of the railroad, Durango grew first as a mining supply and smelter center.
It soon became a focal point for agriculture and logging in southwestern Colorado. East 3rd Avenue, known prior to as the "Boulevard", remains a prestigious residential area located along the bluffs overlooking the downtown commercial district.
The district includes surviving examples of the Pioneer LogCommercial Vernacular, and Rustic Tourist building traditions associated with the mountainous portion of Boulder County. Prior to the Leadville strike ofthe district was the most important silver camp in Colorado. The initial boom period dates from the discovery of gold by George and David Griffith in The simple two-story wood frame building has a flat roof.
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The community erected the building in ByGoldfield was the third largest town in the booming Cripple Creek mining district. The district has been the commercial center of the community since its development in the late 19th century.
Established in as a supply center for the heavy mining activity in the area, people found their way to Lake City via the Saguache-San Juan Toll Road built by Enos Hotchkiss, one of the town founders. The district encompasses a scattered collection of architecturally distinctive and historically important masonry buildings supported by numerous residential and commercial buildings that contribute to the overall appearance associated with late 19th century western mining towns.
Elmo owes its existence to the development of silver mining, which began in the Chalk Creek area in the s. The town is situated at the center of the San Juan mining district. Prospecting began in the s, but it was not until that the first profitable silver vein was discovered in nearby Arrastra Gulch. The district encompasses most of the original town and is ificant for its association with the settlement of the western frontier and the development of metal mining.
The district contains many relatively unaltered and contiguous commercial, public, fraternal and religious buildings of late 19th and early 20th century de. They form the commercial core of an important mining community that composed part of the Cripple Creek-Victor Mining District. Located four miles further into Clear Creek Canyon than the Vicksburg Mining Camp, the property is important for its association with early mining history in the area.
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Golconda Mine The property illustrates the extreme conditions of altitude, climate, and isolation faced by mining operations in the area. Ore-Concentration Facilities. Concentration Mills. Paris Mill The Paris Mill is ificant in the area of industry, engineering and architecture, from when it first opened, towhen mill operations ceased.