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Down The Shaft, Or Up?: Silver and Heritage in the Tintic Mining District by Gary B. Peterson. • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •• Utah's Copper Industry by Leonard J. Arrington Markets, by Nancy Rails, and Regulations: One Hundred Years of Utah J. Taniguchi . • • • • • • • • • . • • . . • in Utah •••


Coal 23

The Uranium Industry oy Gary L. Shumway

Reclamation and Remining by t~a ry Ann W rig ht . . • • . • . . • • . • • • . • . • . •



The old West of prospectors, hard rock districts and towns that go boom and bust is in the midst of another wave of change. The surge in precious metals prices at the end of the 1970s inflationary cycle saw new demand and new technologies appear as the old districts poised in a present extracting a price from the past. Generally higher metals prices have joined heap leaching and ion exchange extraction processes to cause old mines and waste dumps to suddenly assume "ore" status in the current economics. As seismic crews, core drillers and bulldozers lace the old claims in search of new data, the historic fabric of interrelated elements comprising a landscape is undergoing change. But change is ongoing at some rate in every landscape and in the fabulous but little known Tintic Mining District more destructive forces than the new crop of miners have been at work. The Multiple Resource National Register Historic District created in 1978 listed some 24 individual sites of major significance. By 1987 of 13 listed sites that had major structures 6 had disappeared. Dozens more that contributed to the sense of place and past also disappeared. Many of those were more significant than sites that were listed. A number of questions are raised by this ongoing process and in the time available we will address some of them. First, why have major historic sites been recognized and then destroyed and what difference if any does their passing make? To get a feel for the visual changes and the flavor of place involved, we may divide the landscape into Eureka proper, other townsites, and mine surface plants or workings. Main Street Eureka in 1986 had a neglected but beautiful example of a commercial Victorian false front on the north side across from the BPOE bUilding. Since most of the rows of business buildings on that side had been razed in the previous 10 years, it was especially striking in its isolation. It had the classic 19th-century recessed entry with display windows and tiled floor and a corrugated roof rusted to a mellow contrast with the backdrop earthtone hills. It was replaced with a 1940s caboose in fresh painted Union Pacifi,c yellow and red. Next door went a slant-wall metal prefab for the fire department. Buildings leave a message. Post railroad era permanence was expressed in fancy brickwork and Victorian decoration. It is difficult to retain a sense of community or pride when structures have an air of impermanence that indicates the type of boom or bust we currently are in. Over the mountain in Mammoth, a miners cottage stared vacant-eyed across a valley once filled with the modest frame dwellings of the working man. An artist's centerpiece in autumn, by 1985 it was gone joining most of its kin. The miner's "dry" building at the Tintic Standard had served for years as storage for core samples after the miner's changing room need had passed. It burned to the ground in 1986, the nefarious deed of an arsonist. The Chief No.2 headframe over its early concrete-lined shaft was unique in its width and number of structural members. It was bulldozed in the early 1980s and replaced with a steel headframe. The Yankee

headframe, perched on a northeast flank of Godiva Mountain, was bulldozed by ARCO in 1979. While no reason was given, it was apparently easier to screen the collar for safety that way. Fundamental philosophical questions arise in view of these changes. Many factors operate in the destruction of historic mining sites. Hard economic times as well as good ones, taxes, liability costs, apathy and insensitivity are among them. In 1987 Eureka suddenly found itself a "gateway" to the Great Basin National Park. National Parks are notorious for attracting tourists with dollars many of whom stop and leave some of those in historic mining districts enroute or nearby. Virginia City, Nevada and Montana, Georgetown, Colorado and Columbia, California come to mind. Ironically in the very same year three of Eureka's major businesses closed and its most prominent if not most significant symbol of mining, the Bullion Beck headframe, was being stabilized by a state agency under pressure to reverse some of its more insensitive and illegal activites.

At this point we pause to tell the sordid tale (nearly as fascinating as John Beck's discovery and development of the mine itself) of the Bullion Beck headframe's recent near demise at the hands of the Abandoned Mine Reclamation Program of Utah's Division of Oil, Gas and Mining. Situated alongside US 6 just west of Eureka is a massive 65 foot Montana-type two post "gallows" frame which hoisted men and equipment in and out of the mine shaft. One of the largest and most substantial examples of such structures in the West, it annually becomes more rare as the ravages of time and man eliminate them. Many mining historic districts have only a stray small example in poor condition remaining. One of several of an excellent cross section of types in the Tintic, the Bullion Beck is fast becoming a symbol of mining history of significance far beyond Utah. The DOGM's AMRP expanded out from such busy recreational sites as the Cottonwood Canyons to begin removing the "hazards" of abandoned mines from Eureka in 1985. By April 1986 they had performed the requisite paper work and had a contractor preparing the collar of the shaft for a steel safety grate. In direct opposition to contractual guidelines and federal law, the skip guides were smashed down unceremoniously with a backhoe. Weather worn, they were viewed as "unsafe." (letter, Tintic Historical Society Chairman of the Board to AMRP, April 3, 1986) The splintered pieces were reportedly doused with gasoline and set afire. This just months after the Wilberg Mine fire! .In spite of numerous tanks of water dumped by the local fire department, the cribbing around the collar smoldered and burned for weeks. Does this sound like the type of people you want responsible for removing hazards from your National Register Historic Site? In terms of Western mining history the destruction was comparable to swinging the wrecking ball at the angel Moroni atop the Salt Lake temple. AMRP people continued to asSure the Tintic Historical Society and numerous concerned citizens that there was "no effect" on the historical significance of the site. When they finally viewed the damage the tune was changed, but mitigating of the "effect" required continued pressure from other government agencies and individuals. By summer 1987 the job was finally complete and done nearly as well as it should have been in the first place. But the tragedy was both more symbolic and more deep seated.

The real tragedy is that AMRP people have a mind set inherently insensitive to history. They possess the "beaver mentality" which views every problem as an engineering opportunity. Rather than approaching, for example, the problem of safely closing an open mine shaft with a view to minimum materials and visual intrusion they choose the opposite. Their projects in Eureka first put down a massive aluminum painted steel mesh three or four times the size reason might suggest. After negative comment, they repainted them brown and covered most of them with earth. Robert Redford has commented on the "Neanderthal mentality" displayed by highway engineers in Provo Canyon. "You don't have to destroy something to improve it," he said. (Deseret News, Oct. 6, 1987, p. A7) Mining and highway engineers are perhaps relatecJ. What AMRPdoes speaks much more lOUdlythan what it says. Despite the sensitivity to history they proclaim, their actions in Iron County are exemplary. There "the bulldozers, backhoes and scrapers are sealing mine portals, hauling off. mine tailings, and removing any traces of past mining••••" That the "Leyson mine, first opened in 1854, has been identified as the oldest coal mine in the state" ("Machines removing signs of Cedar Canyon mining," Deseret News, Oct. 19, 1986) and was a significant contributor to pioneer iron smelting efforts was apparently inSUfficient justification to DOGM to save a few vestiges for the appreciation and edification of future generations. Oh, but they were going to put up a plaque, as if history were a zoo, and the whole thing only cost $182,750! This is not to argue that there are no legitimate hazards around abandoned mines. Rather that this is another out of proportion bureaucratic program doing more damage than good crusading under questionable mandate to save a tiny minority of the population from its own stupidity. It is the razor edge of irony. One state agency tries to preserve a little of Utah's mining past for the future while another works diligently to obliterate it. One has a minimal budget, one has millions and the ear of the media. Which do you think will prevail? Only if the truth becomes known to a larger public can David entertain a modest chance of slaying Goliath.

Those who read discover that history has a way of repeating itself. Perhaps the best reason then for preserving some history is the time honored dictum that a knowlege of the past can save at least some of us from repeating some of the mistakes of the past. The preservation of buildings, townscapes and landscapes is an evolving idea that has been around in some form for centuries. Value in the practice is attributed to such diverse notions as aesthetics, enlightenment and, especially in these "cost-benefIt-ratio" times, economics. It has been well proven that in many cases the past yields monetary as well as more intangible profits. Sometimes only curiosity or chance operate to save places that become appreciated in a later time. Destruction of historic places also has many motives. Buildings as well as books have been burned because some group or individual has negative feelings about what a place symbolizes. Frequently the past stands in the way of someone's view of "progress." A societal anomie and preoccupation with materialism seem to be near the root of "tear it out" tendencies. The physical past cannot become symbolic in the minds of its

viewers until there develops a chain of awareness, knowledge and ultimately appreciation. The perception of what is "positive" or "negative" and to what degree is very dependent on the viewer's frame of reference or previous experience. Political, tax and insurance ramifications often operate. Apathy and benign neglect are a two edged sword both preserving and destroying. Reasons vary then for the preservation and destruction of historic places. The question remains, "So what?" What difference does it make whether historic places are preserved or destroyed? The difference is far reaching and frequently subtle. Numerous studies from urban planners and geographers show that shape, detail, flow, sense of past and attractiveness to pedestrians and human interaction all affect the social, psychological and ultimately the physical well being of both people and places. Since people tend to operate as left or right brain entities and the former dominate our structured society of political, economic and social systems, it appears to be an uphill battle to elevate the organization of habitat and environs to a humane level. Butte, Montana underwent an extensive Historic American Engineering Record (HA ER) survey following local concerns that the adjacent open-pit copper mine was about to swallow the town. Janet Cornish, Urban Revitalization Agency director, said, "All of a sudden, people started getting excited. Before, downtown had seemed an old, cumbersome area with sentimental value and little else. Now the community saw its economic potential, and they saw that people from outside the community were recognizing it." (Tom Huth, "Mining in the West: Will Our Heritage Survive," Historic Preservation, May-June 1981 p. 15; also see USDI NPS, Butte, Montana A Project Report, April 1981) In a materialistic world, the survivors in the preservation game soon discovered that an economic appeal based on well substantiated facts was their best approach. The modus operandi became simply "show 'em how it makes 'em money!" Of the many reasons for preserving mining history in Eureka and the Tintic, the best may be economic and historical. Economic because if the town's depressed economy is ever to achieve a degree of revival and stability, the traveler's interest in mining history and not the boom and bust mining economy itself will provide it. The district by accident of unpopularity and neglect maintained a range of mining, commercial and residential structures unexcelled in Utah and most of the West. The raw material was and may still be there, but lacking is a view of Tintic's place in the scope of Western mining history, a vision of the district's potential and a commitment to plan, execute and "do it right." The historical rationale is based on the townscape and the array of headframes and surface plants that survive here compared to other districts that now "sell history" with much less of the authentic to show. Even building on your best bet, the material culture landscape of mining past, does not go unopposed. Philosophies of preservation vary as much as human beings. Some prefer to see the district remain a quiet rural retreat and personal playground. Some still carry that old West frontier notion transposed, "the only good planner is a dead planner." Personal rights remain viscerally more important than public ones especially when it comes to property. Opposition also comes as an outgrowth of the automobile and mass communications. The locals can drive out and tune in to get what they want out of town, and the out-of-towners can commute to work the mines during the next mineral boom. These songs are replayed across rural America.

The preservation ethic did not win the West, Manifest Destiny did. There remains a refreshing lack of realization that the frontier era is over. That can be a very appealing force to urbanites, tourists and other outsiders. It also points to the paradoxes pervading the story of preservation in Western mining districts. One federal and state tier of bureaucracy labors to interpret and save our past so that we can understand and appreciate it. Another layer of federal and state agencies operating from the other side of the brain accidentally and on purpose destroy the same past under a relatively legitimate mandate to protect the public from hazards. One mining company bulldozes headframes and business blocks in a twinge of liability consciousness and tax reduction. Another opens a historic tunnel to tours and yet another shares its extensive historic research with interested historical societies. Some people bought locally, even if it cost a few dollars more, and others awaited the trek to the valley to shop. Now there is little option. Some are sensitive to commercial facades and paint schemes while others "don't give a damn." Individualism, at least, is alive and well in the Tintic! Paradox also appears in other districts. Robert Hope, Australian president of Denver-based Houston International Minerals Corporation, acknowledges both past mistakes and the inevitability of conflict at their Virgina City, Nevada operation. "We should have let the community know what we were doing; now we're being more up front, and I think we're being accepted as responsible corporate citizens." After a $78,000 contribution to a historic district survey he said, "We were paying for information--we wanted to see what is really there. To some extent, people perceive value where we don't. Obviously we can't preserve every building." (Huth, 1981) Perhaps more pressing than the direct mining impacts on past mining landscapes (to a degree natural and evolutionary) are the indirect or secondary effects of the recent mining and energy booms. A new mine or leach field or seismic survey is much less destructive than the associated influx of people with a vandal mentality and no roots in or appreciation of the local community and its history. Denice Wheeler, secretary of the Uinta County Historical Society in oil boom Evanston, Wyoming, summed up the flip side of the newcomer-oldtimer influence this way. "The new people in town have become extremely interested in our history. People who've lived here all their lives become sort of immune to their heritage ••••" (Huth, 1981)

Landscape and townscape change in the Tintic Mining District may be conveniently divided into three major time periods; pre-1869, and before and after 1929. The era of Native American and Spanish Influence probably had little impact on the look of the place. Chief Tintic's guerrila war forays from the springs at Homansville and vicinity put a little fear in a few valley settlers and a label on the district, but their nomadic lifestyle left little mark on the land. The Indians in fact were in close harmony with the natural scheme of things. The Spanish are reputed in some accounts to have left arrastra paths from mining efforts in the region, but this remains one of those obscure stories of an obscure place and time that has not been well researched. The Spanish were noted for primarily working surface outcrops and natural openings.

The second phase of landscape change in the Tintic came with discovery of the Sunbeam in 1869 and the beginning of the "Big Four" mines in Eureka Gulch the following year. The 1870s Discovery and Development era saw high grade ore so rich it was plucked from surface exposures, loaded in wagons for haulage to the railroad in Salt Lake and shipped to San Francisco and around the Horn to Wales for smelting. Consolidation and Expansion occurred in the 1880s and 1890s when mills and smelters struggled with the district's complex ores and railroads finally connected the place to big city capital and technology. The boom and bust cycles had already begun. A 1900 description from the !!!!. Lake Mining Review (April 30, p. 5) serves to indicate the flavor of the district when Eureka had a popUlation of 3500 and Mammoth 1200. Eureka "•••boasts of nearly every metropolitan advantage and is a little city instead of an isolated mining camp •••• Mammoth also has kept pace with the times, and, while not as large as Eureka, enjoys about the same facilities." Three decades of New Technology from 1900 to 1930 saw the automobile and electric power arrive and a continuation of cyclical economics. The Great Depression that followed the stock market crash of October 24, 1929 marks a major downhill turn in the ongoing cycles of boom and bust in Tintic towns and mines. Production slowed in the '30s to pick up with World War II demand in the '40s. By the late 1940s many houses were moved from Tintic towns to valley towns like Springville, Spanish Fork and Nephi. Some were burned and others were torn down, but the late '40s and '50s saw significant portions of the built environment disappear. The 1950s and '60s era of Diminishing Production saw the rails pulled up and a gradual exodus continue, leaving a ghostly shell of the district's former self. The 1970s and '80s witnessed the paradox of Preservation and Apathy as the nation's bicentennial generated a superb local historical society and finally the closure of the last operating mines in the district. The postDepression period was one of disappearing and shrinking towns and a contracting Eureka commercial district. The town that had expanded up Eureka Gulch, and extended from nearly the Evans to Knightsville, began a process of shrinking at the margins and thinning from within. A counterpoint of new home building by natives and lovers of the place and via the idiosyncrasies of politics also began to fill a few gaps. Not surprisingly, the mining towns of the American West bear striking similarities. The men were highly mobile in their thirst for that "big strike," and architecture, mining methods, and social institutions flowed freely from place to place. Common themes and occurances include fires, floods, celebrations, the arrival of "city slickers," ladies of the evening, shootings, hangings, fast faro games at numerous saloons, and fortunes won and lost. The shift whistles resounded across the landscape, the pump and hoist engines hummed, and mighty teams of mules and horses freighted in life's necessities until the railroad and later trucks appeared. Hard men at hard work in the mines, mills and smelters dominated the scene off Main Street. Much appeared the same from Tintic to Tombstone. Structures moved quickly from canvas tents and log cabins through simple wood frame dwellings and false front businesses to more elaborate structures of wood, brick and stone in the style of the time. As mines played out and people departed, the towns became ghosts of their former glory or disappeared altogether. The pattern was repeated full cycle throughout the West's more prosperous mining districts.

Tintic has long been one of the West's most overlooked districts. In spite of phenomoneal production records and a history and folklore unexcelled by the more notorious districts, the Tintic has wallowed in the backwater eddys of obscurity. One reason is simply that it sits 75 miles southwest of Salt Lake City in a Utah long dominated by a view of history distinctly Mormon. The railroad and mining impacts continue to be perceived at best out of context with the Mormon story. Tintic was well known to the mobile miners who criss-crossed the West, but to the general population it was as unknown at the turn-of-the-century as it remains today. If Utah is a perception depression in the West, Tintic is surely one in Utah. Part of the reason for that lies in the Wasatch Front's peculiar "Westside-Eastside" mentality. Places west of the River Jordan have never been perceived as "desirable" in the eastside mind, no matter what their economic, historical or aesthetic amenities. Perhaps that concept stems from sources of life-giving water, primarily a product of the Wasatch and Uinta Mountains. The old shorter range corporate mentality of squeezing the bottom line from afar is well represented by at least one Tintic mining company. The example of Jerome, Arizona where "historic properties are being held in limbo by inactive mining interests" (Huth, 1981) comes to mind. There is also evidence for a corporate view that includes history and its material expressions in a longer view. Centurion and Western have valued historic photographs that include mine dumps. They help evaluate old mines for potential reprocessing and help reconstruct past mining activity and even sections of mines underground. The company has uncovered records around the country, some painting an unpretty picture of the lot of labor and company policy. Maimings were frequent in the "good old days" and a death or two in the drifts was insufficient event to be noted in the local newspapers. It took a disaster like the September 1914 Oklahoma stope cave-in that trapped 12 miners and killed 11 to unavoidably appear in print. Life was hard way back when wages were $3.00 or $4.00 a day. Sunshine's recent replacement of Kennecott was quietly heralded with the local comment, "finally got somebody in there knows how to mine underground." Indeed, they discovered lost ore bodies and held great promise until $5.00 silver and state bureaucracy encouraged closure. The company contributed a mine tour, over-counter silver sales, dollars and enthusiasm to the Tintic Historical Society and town efforts to begin a viable tourism campaign. Busted again by golly, but the minerals are there waiting to become ore again and usher in another boom era. The Tintic Mining District is a complex district. The ores baffled early smelter designers who found few mines produced a similar product. The same problem still puzzles the mining engineers. The geology is cut by numerous faults and intrusions and still intrigues serious students of the earth. The Salt Lake Tribune noted Tintic's mineral potential Jan. 1, 1892. "Its growth has ii'O"i"'been commensurate with its merits. It took years to find out that the rich surface deposits were not all that was good in the lodes. When these surface deposits were worked down to the pyrites, or 'white iron,' further sinking was stopped, and it has been the work of the past year or two to demonstrate that there is mineral in paying quantities and qualities below this iron stratum, and many old claims will soon become shippers." Ninety-five years later thorough and perhaps first region-wide evaluations of the district's mineral potential are finally underway.

What would the old-timers have done with seismic data, core drills and satellite imagery? Part of the change we view in mining and the boom towns of mining is related to other external changes. Supply and demand from far distant places, fear of war and depression and alternative materials all affect the silver market. Perception can even prove more important than reality. One reality that affected activity in the 1980s was noted by Rosenthal and Young. "Since the base price for silver is double or triple what it was back in the 1970s, and prices for lead, zinc, and copper have been level since the mid-1970s, the importance of silver in metal-mining operations has multiplied." (D. Rosenthal and E. Young, The New Case for Silver, 1985, p. 17) This factor led to reprocessing of tailings or dumps and increased capital flow toward primary silver mines. Recent indications are positive for life in the old district's mines. A Seattle stockbroker and analyst specializing in North American gold and silver companies recently toured the district and noted that Centurion and Western now control an area almost as large as the famed Carlin District in Nevada. "Before [the Centennial-Eureka] was closed the mine produced 1.5 million tons of ore with an average grade of 0.3 ounces of gold and 14.0 ounces of silver per ton. At today's prices this represents $288 million of gold and $180 million of silver. Since the mine was closed in 1927, there has been absolutely no modern exploration or drilling done ••••" (Jeff Conley, "Centurion Mines A Sleeping Giant Reawakens," Bull and Bear, Oct. 1987, p. ll) ---A few predictions for the not so famous Tintic are perhaps in order. It seems likely that the past will continue to repeat itself in slightly altered forms. Mining will continue its cycles of boom and bust and those apocryphyl tales of a kings ransom in once "worthless" Tintic Standard mining stock traded for a night on the town may well repeat themselves. Those with the earliest information and the resolve to evaluate and act on it will again someday amass small fortunes from the Tintic. The mineral base would seem to be there awaiting the alignment of outside factors again. Another boom in mining will likely change the face of the main district. Men can move mountains a good deal more quickly these days. Historian Phillip Notarianni concluded a lecture on the district's past in these words. "The idea of a 'thread of optimism' through the fabric of Tintic's history exists. This is tied closely to the cyclical pattern of economy, or 'peak and trough' type of activity. Tintic is indeed still alive, and historic preservation may well help it to remain alive." (Notarianni, unpublished paper, no date) Tintic is indeed no "ghost," though a shadow of its former self. But in spite of a class local historical society (recipient of the coveted Corey Award for the finest local historical society on the continent in 1985) many landmark structures have disappeared. Even more tragically, many more non-landmark structures equally critical to the mining landscape compage--its assemblage of elements creating a sense of place-have disappeared. When it comes to historic landscape and townscape, it takes a well fired minority and broadening local base to first appreciate what it has and then to challenge adverse and insensitive changes spawned by big corporations, big government, big dollars and small minds. The question arises, "at what point is it too late?" At what point have too many sites been lost to retain a flavor that tells enough of a story of the place to attract enough visitor dollars to begin to preserve it? It is a complex question. In any case, if answers emerge, they will find Tintic's and the rest of the West's material mining heritage held hostage in large degree to appetites and forces well beyond Eureka Gulch.

Presented in a symposium on mining sponsored by the Utah State Historical Society i~ Salt Lake City. October 31. 1987

train of wagons and horsemen that came to dwell in the valley where the natives sometimes roamed. The newcomers were bearded. sober. and industrious. Instead

of moving on to the west as others who had passed through the valley had done. they diverted the streams flowing from eastern canyons to furnish water to drink. to wash. and to irrigate their crops. And so they made this their home.

In the 1850s. two of the recent immigrants. Thomas and Sanford Bingham. grazed cattle on the hillsides of West Mountain and discovered the outcroppings of ore amid the grass. John Lowder also found some copper there. but before he But

could file on the land he was recruited into the Pony Express as a rider. what use was copper in building the Kingdom?

The editor of their newspaper.

the Deseret News. observed that gold was the principal thing society wanted; anyone who sought to engage in copper mining would have to be considered slightly insanel (Deseret News. May 9. 1860.)

When federal troops came to the territory to protect overland travel and keep an eye on the Mormons during the Civil War. Mormon boys dragging logs for the troops took some of the ore to Colonel Patrick Connor. the commander. who. with the benefit of many years of experience in the California gold fields. was impressed with presence of gold. silver. and lead. along with the copper. directed the formation of the West Mountain Mining District. On Army time. In 1868. He

with Army tools and equipment. his men dug tunnels and removed ore.

when the Union Pacific Railroad was completed to Uinta. southeast of Ogden. the first carload of copper ore was hauled from Bingham Canyon for shipment to the East. In 1873. several million dollars worth of lead and silver ore from

Bingham Canyon were smelted. and some copper was produced as a by-product. but the rich finds of copper that came to dominate Utah's minerals industry were not worked until the 1890s.

The problem is that no one knew how to mine profitably a body of ore that consisted of millions of tiny nuggets embedded in the pile of rocks that made up the Oquirrhs. It was clear that there was a mass of copper ore. but it was How could

disseminated so that it represented less than 2 percent of the soil. anyone mine profitably 2 percent?

And why would anyone want copper anyway?

Then Americans became aware of electricity. thought once to be generated by a kind of fluid. but later recognized as caused by the presence and motion of electrons. protons. and other charged particles. Electric power. men discovered.

could be transported to the ends of the earth. and the cheapest and finest conductor was wire made of copper. With an accelerating demand. necessity found a way. and the primary agent of the revolutionary innovation was Daniel C. Jackling. Tall. athletic.

resourceful. and brainy. this former Missouri farm boy had managed to get an education at the Missouri School of Mines. taught chemistry for a while. and then moved on to the gold fields at Cripple Creek. Colorado. where he obtained work as an assayer. Adventurous and ambitious. Jackling soon advanced to for Captain De Lamar's gold reduction plant in Mercur.

become chief metallurgist Utah.

That plant was an indispensable precursor to what later happened at Gold had been discovered at Mercur in 1883 and John Dern. father of


Utah Governor George Dern. and others organized the Mercur Gold Mining and Milling Company and built the first cyanide plant for the treatment of gold ores in the United States. This process. which required expensive equipment and

high voltage electricity. made it profitable to extract one-half ounce of gold per ton of overburden. About the same time. a Dutch sea captain. Captain J. L.

De Lamar. bought mines near Mercur and employed Daniel Jackling to erect a similar mill. The Dern and De Lamar interests then united. Their electricity

was provided by L. L. Nunn. of Telluride fame. who built a dam across the Provo River and laid a 40.000-volt transmission line the 32-mile distance to Mercur. receiving acclaim as the first long-distance high-voltage project in the world. The problem of excessive heat. which had caused previous high-voltage transformers to fail. was solved by placing the transformer in an oil bath. This method. still used today I am told. both insulated and helped to cool the trans former. At the urging of De Lamar and George Dern. Jackling investigated the potential of the mountain of porphyry copper at Bingham in 1898. "Modern"

mining had begun at Bingham in 1896 when Samuel Newhouse and Thomas Weir formed the Highland Boy Gold Mining Company to build a cyanide plant like that at Mercur to process the gold ore they found at Bingham. As exploration continued.

the miners discovered several ore channels carrying considerable quantities of copper. This was no surprise to oldtimers who had found evidence of such veins At any rate. the Utah Consolidated Gold Mining Company. Commenced

thirty years earlier.

which had absorbed Highland Boy. decided to erect a copper smelter.

in 1898. the year Jackling went to observe. this "modern copper smeltery" was completed and placed in operation in 1899. and was the first smelter erected in Utah primarily for the reduction of copper ores. In that same year. a controlling interest in Utah Consolidated was sold by Newhouse and Weir to William Rockefeller and Henry H. Rogers--"the Standard 'Oil crowd"--for a reported $12 million. and a new company. the Utah Consolidated Mining Company. was formed. With their earnings. Newhouse and Weir purchased

adjacent claims of copper at Bingham. sold interests to British stockholders. and formed the Boston Consolidated Copper and Gold Mining Company. Ltd. company's properties were absorbed by Utah Copper in 1910. This

Jackling regarded the efforts of Utah Consolidated to work the veins of copper as being picayune. The potential lay. not with the few veins of rich He had a practical vision of what

ore. but with the mountain of low-grade ore.

could be done. and in 1903 he was able to persuade his old Colorado friends. Charles MacNeill and Spencer Penrose. to purchase the extensive claims of Colonel Enos A. Wall. who had acquired Bingham properties in 1887. The result

was the formation of the Utah Copper Company. which. Jackling was sure. could do with low-grade Bingham copper what he had done for the low-grade gold ores at Mercur. Instead of digging into the mountain and laboriously extracting the

scanty and porphyritic

ore. Jackling's workers used steam shovels to shovel the

rock and its ore into gondola cars that kept up a steady procession around the hillsides to newly-constructed milling plants on the northern edge of the Jackling's organization

Oquirrhs. next to the south end of the Great Salt Lake.

at first used three steam shovels. four small locomotives with six-yard wooden dump cars. in moving 700.000 cubic yards of earth that first year (1906). exposing almost 6 acres of ore. It marked the first time steam shovels had

been used to strip the overburden from a mine. With the construction of a 4.000-ton concentrating mill at Magna and a

large smelter at Garfield in 1906. the Utah Copper Company now had the largest copper-reducing facilities in the world. By that time the equipment and 145 stripping

facilities at the mine included 11 steam shovels. 21 locomotives. dump cars. and 16 miles of railroad trackage. visited the facilities to buyout

In 1910 John D. Rockefeller. who

Boston Consolidated properties. viewed the

beehive of activity created by the numerous steam shovels restlessly working to tear the green ore from the two dozen terraces that lined the mountain from its base to the top. Excitedly he exclaimed. "It's the greatest industrial sight

Twenty-three electric shovels grunt in the grooves along its [the Hill's] sides biting ten-ton chunks out of the rock. which they spew with fretful repetition into the apparently endless train of gondola cars which forty electric locomotives draw up and down the tiered declivities along eighty-two miles of railroad track. Three hundred and eighty million. nine hundred and eighty thousand tons of earth and copper have been in this manner taken already. The smooth flank of the Hill has been carved into twenty-five amphitheatrical rows. separated by cliffs some sixty feet high. Along these convex levels. 2.100 miners blast the ore out of the rock. govern the shovels. brake the freight cars. and point their drills against the stone. Three billion. one hundred and sixty-one million pounds of copper have been taken out of the Hill. 10.200.000 ounces of silver. and 1.000.000 ' ounces of gold. The amount which these are worth. $520.100.000 would have paid for the digging of the Panama Canal: before Jackling's army is through with the Hill. they will have shaved it to the level of the plain. taking twice as much material as was furrowed from the groove across the Isthmus and 625.000.000 more tons of copper ore. (Fortune. April 1930. pp. 72. 134)

far greater economic

importance than gold or silver. or for that matter. of The electrification of our homes and industries in

gold and silver combined.

this century. and the mushrooming hundredfold significant

of the automobile industry. have caused a And Utahans have played a

increase in the copper industry. role in this stunning growth.

The formation of Utah Copper in concentrator at Garfield. and

1903. the construction

of the huge 2.000-ton-per-day

the financial and technical success of the mass production processing of the disseminated


ore in Bingham. led immediately

to efforts to And later in in

work low-grade 'porphyry depots in Nevada. Arizona. New Mexico. Chile. the Congo. and other parts of the world.

With advancing technology.

which Utah Copper played an important role. deposits of still lower grade could be worked profitably. By the 1960s the Bingham mines were profitably working Equally revolutionary was the

ore that was less than 1 percent metal. development percent.

of the flotation process which enhanced recovery as much as 50 Electric shovels replaced steam; heavy-duty. The huge concentrating rubber-tired Diesel

trucks replaced trains.

plants. electric generating

plants. and flotillas of expensive equipment had facilitated and accelerated the extraction of six million tons of precious metal and converted the richest

hill on earth into the richest hole on earth. dwellers had been blessed. Perhaps the most dramatic evolution in Utah's copper industry occurred during World War II. when copper production at Bingham totaled 750 million pounds in 1943. and represented almost one-third of the Free World's output of newly-mined copper. There were also major increases in demand at the end of The new poling furnaces at the in

the war in 1946. and also during the 1950s.

Garfield copper smelter and the new refinery at Garfield. constructed

1951-1952. produced refined copper. a product ready for fabrication. had an integrated Despite declining

Utah now

industry from the mine through milling. smelting. and refining. copper prices. accelerated foreign competition. and labor

problems. Kennecott expansion smelter.

announced. in 1963. a $100 million four-year program of mills. and the Garfield and grinding

at the Bingham mine. the Garfield-Arthur

This made possible a 20 percent increase in ore production a new precipitation


plant. and changes in smelting methods.

A similar expansion of the Anaconda Copper Company at Carr's Fork. five miles east of Tooele. was begun to provide a new mining and milling complex. costing some $200 million. which would exploit the rich deposits of copper. molybdenum. gold. and silver in that location. The falling price of copper has

forced the company to cease its operations this will be only a temporary setback.

for the present. but observers hope

Most of the copper that we use in our automobiles.

aircraft. plumbing.

electric wiring. and computers has gone through four basic processes--mining. concentrating. smelting. and refining--before being manufactured into the

products we use.

As contrasted with the ancient mining of veins in Cyprus

(from which we get the name of copper). Africa. Britain. and India. Jackling introduced the open-pit approach. in which the overburden was removed and the rock was then blasted and transported for processing. After it


is mined. the ore is then crushed and ground into powder and concentrated. through a flotation process. into a material of 15 to 40 percent copper. In

this form the copper is then melted in furnaces and the resulting unfinished metallic product or "matte" is poured into a vat where the impurities are removed. copper. The result is blister copper. which is 99.5 to 99.8 percent pure

But the product still must go through one more step to render it suitable for manufacture. and that is refining it through an electro-chemical process.

after which it will end up 99.99 percent pure. to manufacturers and other buyers.

Only then is it ready for sale

Recent advances adopting a procedure

in technology have somewhat modified that reduces costs by "streamlining"

this process by the four steps. using of Utah c09per

what is called the SXEW methodology. can be processed Meanwhile. in this manner. production continued

But not even a majority

to mount.

The Mineral Research Laboratory in the

at the University harvesting

of Utah was inaugurated

in 1954 to evolve improvements silver. molybdenum.

of Bingham copper's by-products--gold.


and platinum. The 1950s and 1960s were especially by-products were in heavy demand. rewarding. Copper and copper

Prices. which had been 14 cents a pound in

1946 at the end of World War II. rose to 24 cents in 1951 and on up to 42 cents in 1956. Prices declined to 26 cents in 1958. but rose again to 36 cents in The Bingham Mine was a major pillar

1966. and even reached 77 cents in 1974.

in Utah's economy. employing nearly 8.000 persons during its peak years in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Kennecott put nearly $204 million per year into

the state's economy by means of its payroll. paid another $22 million in taxes. and purchased annually an average of about $168 million in Utah goods and

services during the same years. But problems were developing. improved. low-cost represented well-financed technology New beds of copper were being worked under Employees came to be and

in Africa and South America.

by the United Steel Workers

of America. a strong. centralized. developed

union with policies and practices

in a quite different

industry. emploYment

The company .found itself under the necessity of guaranteeing to workers displaced by the introduction of new technologies

continued and


Finally. with a decline in copper prices from more than $1 per closed the Bingham Mine. leaving on

pound in 1980 to 65 cents in 1985 Kennecott

the payroll only a security force of 240 people at the mine and a small staff at headquarters. Many observers predicted Tribune the death of American mining. Robert Woody. our

reporter. who was not so pessimistic. in its 1985 convention

was amused when the American inaugurated its first

Mining Congress.

in San Francisco.

"prayer breakfast"--a mining community. depend on prayer? Congress

startling innovation

for the normally

feisty and irreverent

Was this a sign of their desperation?

Did their salvation

This year (1987). meeting in San Francisco again. the Mining time. Woody thought. to thank God

repeated its prayer breakfast--this

instead of to implore. for Kennecott was now producing copper again and mining companies allover the nation had reached bold new agreements with their work

force and had once more started to dig. mill. smelt. and refine. A year ago. Kennecott. by that time having become a part of Standard Oil program if the union

of Ohio. offered to invest $450 million in a modernization

would accept an average cut of $3.22 an hour in wages and agree to the elimination Kennecott's sacrificed of the cost of living allowance. terms. The union membership accepted

In the interest of continued employment.

the employees

more than $5 an hour in wages and benefits.

In order to raise the in

funds for the modernization. Arizona to American

Kennecott also sold its Ray Mining Division

Smelting and Refining Company and its interest in the Chino The revenue from these two sales is which the company expects

Mine in New Mexico to Phelps-Dodge. furnishing

almost half of the Bingham modernization.

industry. employment

The company found itself under the necessity of guaranteeing to workers displaced by the introduction of new technologies

continued and


Finally. with a decline in copper prices from more than $1 per closed the Bingham Mine. leaving on

pound in 1980 to 65 cents in 1985 Kennecott

the payroll only a security force of 240 people at the mine and a small staff at headquarters. Many observers predicted Tribune the death of American mining. Robert Woody. our

reporter. who was not so pessimistic. in its 1985 convention

was amused when the American inaugurated its first

Mining Congress.

in San Francisco.

"prayer breakfast"--a mining community. depend on prayer? Congress

startling innovation

for the normally

feisty and irreverent

Was this a sign of their desperation?

Did their salvation

This year (1987). meeting in San Francisco again. the Mining time. Woody thought. to thank God

repeated its prayer breakfast--this

instead of to implore. for Kennecott was now producing copper again and mining companies allover the nation had reached bold new agreements with their work

force and had once more started to dig. mill. smelt. and refine. A year ago. Kennecott. by that time having become a part of Standard Oil program if the union

of Ohio. offered to invest $450 million in a modernization

would accept an average cut of $3.22 an hour in wages and agree to the elimination Kennecott's sacrificed of the cost of living allowance. terms. The union membership accepted

In the interest of continued employment.

the employees

more than $5 an hour in wages and benefits. Kennecott

In order to raise the in

funds for the modernization. Arizona to American

also sold its Ray Mining Division

Smelting and Refining Company and its interest in the Chino The revenue from these two sales is which the company expects

Mine in New Mexico to Phelps-Dodge. furnishing

almost half of the Bingham modernization.

to be completed within a year from now.

The plan calls for the installation system by conveyor


an in-pit crusher. replacement of the old rail ore-haulage belt. the construction of a modern mill and concentrator

at Copperton. and the

laying of a slurry line to take concentrate Bingham Mine is not without advantages.

to the smelter. Although the mined copper

represents only .6 to .8 of one percent of the ore. the immense scale of the open pit mining offers per unit economies sufficient to make the processing low-grade ore profitable. making Kennecott of

The mine also produces a significant amount of gold.

the third largest domestic producer of gold. and significant The company now expects to have 1.800 The modernization will The They

amounts of silver and molybdenum.

employees producing at an annual level of 185.000 tons.

make it. the company believes. the lowest cost producer in the industry. company hopes that prices have reached bottom and will not fall farther. have good reason to believe this. but it is by no means assured.

If the company

maintains a permanent work force of 1.800 persons. it would contribute $65 million annually to the Utah economy in payroll. and significant taxes and in purchased goods and services. If the multiplier amounts in

is 3. ~s the

company believes. this would mean that the payroll alone would add almost $200 million annually to Utah's total personal income: that is. about 5.400 additional jobs. The modernization program is particularly heartening to a state that has

had serious financial problems during the past few years. Since this is a humanities symposium. I want to close by paying tribute to the entrepreneurs in our state. When people talk about Utah's pioneers. they their loyalty to worthy ideals.

talk about their hardiness. their self-reliance. their humor under adverse circumstances.

and their sacrifice of personal and Some of these pioneers were

family interest for the good of the community.


frontiersmen and frontierswomen. but they were industrial pioneers as well--persons who contributed toward our industrial strength--a strength that has

enabled us to survive through two terrible world wars. several depressions. and unforeseen natural calamity. Entrepreneurs have pioneered in mobilizing people There was

and resources to build society and improve our level of living.

Brigham Young. who showed us how to organize to conquer what was almost universally settlements. regarded as a desert wasteland. He directed the founding of 350

the construction of hundreds of canals. the erection of telephone and

poles. the laying of railways. and the launching of mining. manufacturing.

service enterprises that. by the time of his death in 1877. provided the basis of support for more than 150.000 persons in a region widely regarded as uninhabitable. There was David Eccles. son of a half-blind woodturner and his wife who lived in a poverty-stricken section of Scotland. With indefatigable energy and

risk-taking. David started more new enterprises and a greater variety of enterprises than any Utahan after Brigham Young. There was a group of young

Ogden engineers who organized the Pioneer Electric Power Company which built a dam across Ogden River: created a huge reservoir for power. culinary. and irrigation purposes: provided power for Ogden and Salt Lake City: and were the first in the world to accomplish long-distance constructed to generate electricity. transmission from a man-made dam

There was John Moses Browning in firearms. We can be proud Some of

Philo Farnsworth in television. and Daniel Jackling in copper. of Utah's contributions

toward the industrial strength of the nation.

this came from the brilliance of talented individuals; some of it was a product of our group aptitude for organized cooperation.

The book of Ecclesiastes in the Old Testament tells an interesting story about a little city that was attacked by a powerful king. bulwarks and laid siege to the city. He built great

But. said the author of Ecclesiastes. "He. by his wisdom."

there was found within the city a poor but wise man.

wrote the chronicler. "rescued the city." (Ecc. 9:14-15.) We are not told how he rescued the city. whether it was by an invention. a suggestion for improved organization. or simply by extraordinary human motivation. But it helps us remember the persons and achievements that have May they inspire us to

brought us to our present level of accomplishment.

renew our determination to assist those who are making additional contributions toward the industrial advancement of our state and nation.

Sources In preparing They include: this paper I have borrowed heavily from several sources.

Clark C. Spence. "Copper mining." in Howard R. Lamar. ed •• The of the American West (New York: Thomas Y. Crowell Co ••

Reader's Encyclopedia

1977). 259-260; Arthur B. Parsons. The Porphyry Coppers (New York: American Institute of Mining Engineers. 1933) and The Porphyry Coppers in 1956 (New

York: AIME. 1957); Gary B. Hansen. "Industry of Destiny: Copper in Utah." ~ Historical Quarterly 31 (Summer 1963): 262-279; Leonard J. Arrington. "Abundance

from the Earth: The Beginnings

of Commercial Mining in Utah." Utah Historical

Quarterly 31 (Summer 1963): 192-219; Gary B. Hansen. "A Business History of the Copper Industry of Utah. 1860-1910" (Master's thesis. Utah State University.

1963); Leonard J. Arrington and Gary B. Hansen. The Richest Hole on Earth: A History of the Bingham Copper Mine (Logan: Utah State University. Nelson. "The Mineral Industry: A Foundation 1963); Elroy

of Utah's Economy." Utah Historical

Quarterly 31 (Summer 1963): 178-191; '~orld's Record Hill." and "Daniel Cowan Jackling." Fortune 1 (April 1930): 71-74; Garth Mangum and Camille Guth. "The Future of Utah Copper." Utah Economic and Business Review 47 (January-February 1987): 1-19; C. D. Michaelson. 20. 1961. typescript Remarks at Utah State University. Logan. April of the writer; Robert H. Woody. "Kennecott

in possession

Joins Other Mining Interest in New Growth." Salt Lake Tribune. September 13. 1987; and Utah Copper Division. Kennecott ~ (Salt Lake City. various printings). Copper Corporation. The Utah Copper


A paper for presentation

at a Mining



Dr. Nancy

J. Taniguchi

This act 1 imits the [obtainableJ area to an unreasona~lt small acreage [640 acres],.~rohibiting the prudent investment of capital in coal-mining operations; •••• [ThereforeJ the unscrupulous have [ca~ried] their schemes of fraud and corruption to slJch an extent as to amount .to a national scandal. Title halJing passed, the Government' possesses no guaranty that as a public utility the coal can be made available to supply the market; on lhe contrary, these lands have almost uniformly passed into the hands of speculators or large combinations controll ing the cutput or the·transportation •••. l

The name of the company, 'reflected


incorporated Mexican sllver

in Colorado, on the'sowth side of

the goal of tapping

Rio Grande

was cut off from

its southern


and had to build





and acqu ired 1ands c 1a imed by prospec tors and homesteaders the BooK Cliffs, s.tretching from 'south-central Utah

al" along



the restrictive

Coal Act of 1873.

It also


,. w

produced impressive tonnages from its several

. rts .

rouTe. ~ -. ,',

The Rio Grande



corporations Pa:ific,






national 4!1

th~ Union

IAlhich al.oIInec! mine i.

at Scofie1d.

setbac% d~r::1 ined

in 19G4, the to get


Mine Workers

aT America after World


involved in Utah until War 1.

its smelter thereafter.

at Pueblo, Cooperating


in the late


and expand~d g:.;.nt, in




the continuing


of the Rio Grande



era of



Latuda, 7 1920.




and others,


in the years before

the continuing Utah's rapid

prosperity indus~rial

of the Rio Grande



era of








and other';,


7 in the years before 1920.


a s~rni1ar

mc,ril::lpo1y fre,m arising

and encouragec


a tre~en~cus


in dema~d,

. 9


the Unjt~d


and points



on th~ D&~G.



this fuel


The Den~er & Rio Grande Railroad and the Oregon Short Line Ra i 1roa.d have a con trac t by the terms of wh the;' agree to give preferen~e to the movement of coKe o~er coal •••• Most of that coke business goes to Butte, Montana, and while the pec1pie in SaLt Lake, and in Uhh and in Idaho, and all the ether states are leaving their homes and huddl ing together in one place or another tp k~ep from free:ing to death, for the want 07 coal. This coke business moves with clocK-l iKe r-egu1o.rity and it rnc,ves in violation of the 10.1,0.1 •••• (IJt is not right to Keep a s~e1ter in Montana running right along and the~i? co1<••. ovens clf Sunrl;-,side, ol,.med b:' the ·rai1road and its fuei conpany, rn~~ing fuli time when the coal mines are hung u~ pretty ne~rly half the time and the people are freezing to death fi~ the want of fu~l .10

During the years 1913, 1914, 1915 and the first six or seven months of 1916, .•. th~ re~scn the coal business was not profitable was due to the destructive competition carried on among the cc,.~l ccmpa.;;ies t:-:em':ell!esby the mu1tipl icity clf prices and through their over anxiety to secure busniess and at one time they toc~ prices [c~ a long term contract] at which they could not make money and that condition is also true i:-l pn.cticall:t e'}er:: :,ib:Tiino\.!s fje1d in the United
State": .• 11


i~ VJe.": nCit then 12



1 icense



o:jtil ic






in 19~Ot









~e-gjs1atl:~, 15

the cc~~ 9~~; a;sc gQt their


of praise

fo~ contributing


Sunnyside sub:idiary



tap~ing States

the new mine Steel




c~ the Unite~


Fue1 Ccm~an1, Kn:;ht

Fuel Ccm~any,

anc Independent

Coal and CoKe.



ha.d found

common ground.

As ·the marKet closed down,


beet sUGar





and the de~and

for coal dried




thrcll.Jghcll.Jt the


1,lIith the


pl?'. te1n excHd::ig



spent, the m:ne

and faced with in 1931, never

the continuing to operate

depression, 21

they closed

it successfully.




the smoKe


in and around 23




TO:" Uhh coal.





::w U



.•.. ' ',"J
C: o]J ;:::


•• •












.J~: +'"' '" c: .•.• 0
::.' u



3. IT;il1iC 1l




c'~ VJh;ch




r.:ill i on ton~





with 2'3



i en

of a

o~ Sast~e Gat~ a~d be9a~ wor~;n; mine: tapped th~ough

seam which 29 the Cas~:e Gate entrance.


the two

With the development

oi big,coal

trucKs, Emery County

truck mines



G~ou; of Somerset,



S~a~:s Coal Company, and U~ah Power and Lj~ht Com?any.










i: oil







not Just


but to mix with





welcoming 33









a single



'Seme well-posted engineers ••• look forward to the time when .••• ra new] process will be employee on a huge scale to produce liquid-fuel for internal cC<lTibustionengines out of bituminous coal. They do not ex~ect ~ return to the production rates of twenty years ago until that time arrives. They mention no c~te, but they frankly assert that it will precede the era whe~ petrole~m products are produced in any considerable quantitiy from oil snale.'36 .


Sa1Iin,;er" Office, At~!2-= ..-·;:,

ReJ':Ji': 1907),

to p.

~~::a1 Ye~~ E~dtnc June ~

tr:e S;?c:-·~tar/ of t~i'= :·~:~rll:i~·f':i;' th;;. 1987 (Washtngton, D.C.: Gcv~~~~e,t


(t,J,?I..,j l

c·~ ~~:e ~::;c~:~;<?:':
~a')en: \";.:~


:j;::' ... "~:' ~.-;:j





~>" :::-';'==, :?-::;, ~;;'.

17 Stat. 607; Nanc;f J. T~,r';G\,;':~:i 1 t=;'s'? l..!::,,:: '=";~ S'!':""e~ Dea:-=~ (Sa1t LaKe City: University of Utah P~e~s, forthcoming), Utah State Coal Mine Inspector's 1907, p. 19; Utah State Archives, Reports, 1896, ?S; 1900, p.49;


Salt Lake City, Utah .

Allan Kent Powell, The Next Time We Strike: L~bor in Utah': C:a1 Fields, 1900-1913 (Log~n: Utah State Uniuersit!P~e:s, 1985),

Ell is Clark, Jr, "Report on C~al Deposits at the Junction of Price River and Willow CreeK,- Denlar and R'io Gr·a.nde~aper's, t'1H. 513, Box 51, Fd. 865, Colorado St.ate Historical Society, Denve~ Colorado, p. 17; James E. Fell, Jr., Ores ~ Meta1s: The Rocky Mountain Smeltinc Industry, (Line01n: University cf NebrasKa
P~ess, 1979), p. 160; ·Carbon County Coal for Montan~," (P~iceJ

Eastern Utah Advocate (hereafter El~), 1~ J~ly 1904; A,e, Watts, - :~a 1 and the Coa I Industry: W~lat !t MHns To Utah, - i rl ThlJrsey Jessen Reynolds, comp., Cente~~ial ~:~oes ~rc~ Ca~bcn Coun~Y, (Salt LaKe City: Daughters of Utah Pioneers, 1948), p. 21; E1roy Nelson, -The Mineral Industry: A Foundation of Utah's Economy,"
Utah !-!istorin.i 191. 7

196~', ',}c:. 2:, N:.2~ pp.


Art~urE. Reynolcs,


"In the Coal Fiel~s of Eastern Utah, Cai'~on a~j
Canyon Dis,trict, Carbor,

Eme:-'y Counties,




comp., pp. 221-235.

J. Tan:g'jc~:i,





Reform and Utah Coal,'" (Ph.D •.dis., UnilJErsity of Utah, 198~),
;;~. 22-:0.
1 Tinig'Jchi, 10 . . "Perceptions ar"d Rn' it!>?:l" PP. :25-!?7.

"Varbatim Report of Testimony a~d Prcc~!d:n;s--Ti?stimcny Ta~i?~ at the hearings he1d by the Joint Senat~ and Housi? Committee of the Legislature of the Stat~ of Utih, to inves~~;~t~ t~~ q~~:t~:i of
,Ja.nuary, A.D.

~aid h;arinS5


on the 29th da~ of
:::.~,~~ ~;k=

Uta..h Sta.t~


p. 223,224.



R~ , ' ~".l Gj~a~~

Str~l}el1, 1~· (Apri1

"Coal Situatior. 30J 1917): 30;
10 Ma.>' !917.

for "All

19'17," ill S?lt L?Y~ ~~!!"ii!";g The tJ~:ne$ of Ci.rbon ShCI,'J


Mu:~ New Machinery










LaKe t1ining

Revie',\1 22 <15 ~arch

192C):35j ., .•.

Ne~ West Magazine

11 (February

1920) 25. 38 •

Tea:hers, Pupils and Patrons of Carbon [School] District, "A Brief History D~ Cir~on :CW~~/," mimeo;raphed (n.p., [1932J), pp.
21, 18 2St 15.

Ajlan Kent P~we11, The Ne;:t Ilm! We Strike:Labor in Uh~l;s C;~al Fields. 1900-1923 (Legan, Utah: Utah State University P:--e,:s, 1985), pp. 13~, 13i.

Le~nard J. At~ingt:~ ar~ 7hcrnas Ale~cander, Re2e~de~t Cc~mcnwEal~h: Utah's Economy from Statehood ~ the GrE~t Depr~s~i~r (Prouo: 8ri;ham Young University P~ess, 1974),' p~. 42,



Reoort o~ ~
Utah, 1921),

Indus~r!a: Corn~is:ion!

1918-1920 (Sa1t Lake City,

of.':!.1.!.!l City, Utah, 1929), p.64j ~&1mwt Hans Doell ing, Centra: Utah Coal ~;e1d: (Salt L:Ke City: University of Utah, 1972), p.54o; M. Hi~ry R:biscn, "~ 3~;i~ E:cncrnic Hlstcry of Utah;s Coal
:~:L.;,:t:->/,· 1177): 4.
Ut=.~: E:':':!c~!C

238j Bulletin No. ~ of 1ht Indu$trial [Jul/ 1,1926 to J'..:ne 30, 1928J<Salt Lake

a.;:.: E:!.!5i~e!-s,


..: ;

37 rto.4


BReTT! i sc!?n:·!?s in of

and Patrons, p.28; J. Eldon Dcr~an,

Coo.1 : ••. .;)oc tv; ,. in Ph i 1 i P F. Nct"'i i anni , mp Ci~~~~ C:~n~Y· Ei:~~~~ Utah;; !n~u5~~'al iZi~ IS!I~d (Salt Lake City: Utah State Historical Society, 1981), pp.47,48; ChucK Z!~:!·':CEr.; "~.:.r!~l Fi!"!"~!l ies Ho'd tA4?!"!':c:~·=e-: ,.-~ Cons~..!~ie:-s,1i 'r~:-':r:!: i.Y..rl.:.


A=~OCit~ (S-A), 2~ J~n~ 198C. 23 COIT~itt=e to Study Operations



Coal Resources

<Salt LaKe

of [UtahJ State Governrn~nt, WorXs
StudY of the

~~ Economic


-Octob~r - De\!e1o;mo?n~ 19, _-- 1926), pp.72,
of . July


-;.:, -'-' :"":: .::: , '-" ,.'-'

Di:iel! inl;,



of th~ ·::S:.1t


!nd!J,:trial Cit;.', 1945>,


h 194212



Leonard Shield, ~rivat! inte~)i~w, Lease recor~ card SL-051279-C63188 Manag~ment Office, p~!C?, Utah.

on file


at 8:reau

14 .Jull clf

198:3 ; Lane

No title, Pee~le=s Coal Company Records, Ms:. 9, 8righam Young Unive~sity Special Soll~c~:cns, 27:, Box 15,


nln~orrnaticn O~ Draga~ton Hoc~~s Giv~n,u S-A, 17 January !~4~; U.S., Department of the Interior, Sureau of t~e :e~!us, C&~~~n Cownt/, Utah figures fer a~propriate years; "Prcduction," Utah Industrial Commission Siennial Reports fo~ a~prc;~;&t! leers; U.S., Bureau 04 Mines, Mineral YearbooK for appropriate years.
"Another Deal In Cc.a1 L~.nCs,n N-A, 15 March 1917; Special

Warranty Deed, Book 107, p.506, Warranty Deed, 2 Ja~uary 1968, SooK 107, p.424, Judgment of Disincorporation, 25 Ju~e 1974, Bock 152, p.680, all in Carbon County Recorders" OHice. 30 . "Mining project approved," S-A, 25 June 1980; Bob Taniguchi, "Ca~tle Country Cornmunit:, Profile," (Utah Department of Sr.':ployment·Securi ty, Jul:' 1980), p.4j "Projected t1ines Carbon/Emery Counties," mimeographed (Price: Utah Job Service,
1980) •


A good, brief descripticn of CPSC"s history Prices, Production •••. Makes OPEC a Formidable Conoress and the Nation, Volume ~ (Washington, Congressional Quarterly, Inc., 1981), pp.504,

is "Power Over World Power,· D.C.: 505.


Robert Gillette, UNationai E:wironmenta,l Pol ic;' Act: Signs o~ Ba~~lash Are EV(dent,· Science 176~ no.4030 (7 A~ril 1972):30-32; Ibid., "National En .;irOii!'1\ento.l icy Act: l-kl,,1 We~1 Is It ;;c' Working?" Science 176~ no.4031 (14 April 1972): 146-50j··En~rgy Needs Call For Vast Cc~1 Growth,· ~ining Inforrnatio~o.l Services,

Samuel C.




, Inc.,


27 Fe-br:';~"7"

1972), p.19; : C:':?5 , Pr·icE,

U~a~ Rc~e~ a~= Lig~t Compa~/, "ihe Story o~ ~~~ ~~nt!ng~on a~d Hunter Power Plants," (n.p., 1983>, p.3; Bob Taniguchi, p.4j ";:·fA..~ iQor-+pr' t·~·1 -:". "e' ,~t'!t~·,..!""'tv .•. l')_ ••• ~d~ .•cr_ T:'.".!'J~_"1 ',"1 ,. '-.-.:.:! C:~,~iJ' 1 C:'C: 1 •• .•. eo. ~.127j Angie Hyre, "Planner says Price has Grj~ on energy boom,· ·S-A, 5 August 1981.
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One day in the summer of 1898, John Wetherill led an archaeological into a shallow cave in western San Juan County, Utah. out of the sun. made him forget


There were no Indian ruins in

the cave, and Wetherill, as the party's guide, had only stopped there for lunch to get However, once inside the cave, he saw something that momentarily the heat. In the cave wall was a petrified was another tree, surrounded by petrified log whose

yellow stains, and just outside the cave entrance and green minerals. While the archaeologists pocket knife, then, satisfied

carbonaceous material had been almost entirely replaced by vivid yellow, blue, black, prepared lunch, Wetherill dug into the soft ore with his that his discovery was worth the effort, built a rock his claim Between two flat rocks near the

monument by the log outside the cave entrance. to the minerals located there. Wetherill never returned

base of the monument he placed a piece of paper on which he had written

to the cave, nor did he record his claim. But he had years later, when

fixed the location of his discovery indelibly in his mind. Forty-five

he knew that his long, eventful career was closing, he described the cave with the yellow stains to a young friend, Preston Redd. IntrigUed by Wetherill's account, Redd followed his directions Wetherill's interest on the central prospectors, cattlemen, to the cave in Red Canyon, found the outcrops, uncovered the rich uranium deposits of the Blue Lizard mine. 1 in the petrified Plateau in Colorado 1898. For a number of years, and soon

logs and associated minerals was not unusual explorers,

and others had stumbled across mineralized "logs" and other

outcroppings and had submitted samples for assaying in the hope that they contained valuable metals. Always in the past, the assays had shown only traces of gold, silver, However, as Wetherill left his home in Mancos, Colorado, or other important metals.

that spring, the Colorado Plateau was abuzz with the news that the riddle of the strange outcroppings had been solved and that there might be a market for the ore in the future. Some ore from one of the claims in western Colorado had been given to Charles Poulot, a graduate of the Paris School of Mines, who was doing technical When he was unable to complete the chemical Charles Friedel, in work at the Cashin copper mine.

analysis of this strange mineral, he had sent it to his professor,

it contained combination which he named carnotite.2 Perfectly


who determined


uranium and vanadium in a new mineral of the Colorado Plateau ore was a

timed with the identification as pitchblende of eastern

demand for uranium and vanadium from a number of sources. amounts of uranium occurring Central Europe. after City mining district 1896 European Colorado

Since 1871, small market in the

in the gold and silver mines of the had found a limited interest greatly

At first used mainly for pigments in dyes, inks, stained glass, and ceramics, scientific and technological increased Of by far the greatest long-term importance was the discovery to nuclear fission. But, though

demand for uranium. discovery that, scientific interest from the outset, Active

by Antoine Henri Becquerel in 1896 that invisible rays emanated from uranium ore; a among other things, led ultimately with radioactivity fascination and its implications created a limited market was technological 1898 when Gordon which in making fine steel. spring of

of much more immediate economic importance of carnotite began in the

in both uranium and vanadium as ferro-alloys exploitation

Kimball of Ouray, Colorado, obtained a lease on the Copper Prince claim, from which Poulot's samples had come. contained interest 21.5 percent By June, Kimball had mined ten tons of carnotite, uranium and 15 percent vanadium. By the next spring, local Colorado, he from

in the new industry was sufficient a local rush.

that when a cowhand named Tom Francis

found some good deposits precipitated

in McJntyre Canyon, San Miguel County, By 1906, the known deposits of carnotite market,

extended Cold Creek, just south of Price, Utah, to Coal Creek, near Meeker, Colorado.3 The problems of an uncertain high grade ore kept the carnotite between extracted year. 1906 and 1909, carnotite

low ore prices, and the demand for only was limited almost entirely to that

industry very unstable from 1898 through 1906, and production work each

by claim owners doing the required $100 worth of assessment

the day the miners felt would yet come when there would be a good market for their ore.4 Beginning in 1910, the prospects for the miners and large companies alike due began to accelerate

Most of this was stored on the mine dumps against

appeared to be getting brighter as the demand for carnotite to a new, exciting use for one of the elements it contained. 1896 that uranium would fog otherwise of scientists

Becquerel's discovery in plates set a number Two of these

unexposed photographic

to exploring the implications of uranium's radioactivity.


Pierre Curie and his Polish wife, Marie Sklodowska Curie, soon concluded than uranium ore, and in 1898 they element in the ore, which they of this began of a new, highly radioactive

that pure uranium was much less radioactive proved the existence named radium. Almost from the moment of its discovery, unstable element aroused scientific to look hopefully at the effects dividing cells subjected were less drastically treatment prestigious substantial radiation cancer.5 of cancer. research affected, interest, of radiation they perceived

a number of the properties on cells. that

and by 1910 medical researchers

Noting that young, rapidly

to moderate radiation

were killed, while more mature cells radium held promise for the researchers, including the had conducted and were

By 1913 a number of medical

Dr. Howard Atwood Kelly of Johns Hopkins University,

with the limited amounts of radium salts available in the treatment of at least

convinced that if greater

amounts of more nearly pure radium were available, radium some types of major interest. the

would have major efficacy

For the first time, carnotite This interest curative originated

from the Colorado Plateau attracted from the economic promise

in part


development of this new mineral reserve. potential. for a moment, the nation's mood of the nation. In that carnotite

It also stemmed partly from its exciting came to symbolize the Progressive influenced greatly the

Most of the widespread enthusiasm developed, however, because reserves moment, much happened that

future of the industry, and that is worth describing in detail here. Few causes could have captured the attention Progressives growth. shared the conviction more of that mainstream political its full and social movement called "Progressivism," that was at that moment in its heyday. that in order for the nation to realize would have to replace promise, a national policy of planned progress haphazard

They saw a need for greatly increased federal responsibility in the areas of guarding the public health, and protecting They and most shared a dislike, or at least value of radium, they saw much carnotite reserves

conserving the nation's natural resources, also were very caught up with efficiency, distrust, of foreigners. As Progressives that concerned

individual opportunity by curtailing the monopolistic tendencies of big business.

became aware of the potential

them in the way in which the Colorado Plateau

were being developed, and indeed, in the uses being made of this vital American commodity. Despite the apparent medical potential of radium, most American doctors its efficacy. Radium was extremely clientele, were content expensive (between were slow to explore

$120,000 and $150,000 per gram) even when obtainable, and most doctors, involved in the routine of caring for an adequate test radium's worth. cause cancer proper help. the application little to wait for others to the use of seeking for In the meantime, they were reticent to encourage

something which might prove to be nothing but another patent medicine which could victims to wait until their condition was inoperable upon establishing before As a result, most of the Colorado Plateau radium was being purchased institutes of radium therapeutics. Furthermore, the Europeans were paying so miners were being

by Europeans, especially Germans, who were intent for the carnotite

they were buying that Colorado Plateau

forced to ship only their high grade ore, thus wasting at least four fifths of this rare and easily depletable reserve by throwing it on their mine dumps.6 When employees that a press release in Science, American Literary Supplement, of the recently created Bureau of Mines reported these conditions to the Progressive director of the Bureau, Joseph L. Holmes, he directed be made that Digest, would call national Nature, Current attention to the situation. Scientific Engineering Between April, 1913, and March, 1914, this release appeared in slightly varying forms Independent, Work, Scientific Opinion, American, Outlook, World's

Magazine, and other periodicals at least once, as well as in newspapers nationwide.? By October,
1913, Bureau officials

could claim that their action was responsible

for a price increase of 33 percent for miner's ore, with ore running only 1 percent being accepted by buyers, as compared with 2 percent at the beginning of the year. 8 However, Progressives of a valuable national were concerned resource, with the conservation and proper utilization some obscure Colorado What of the for the into an not simply assuring that

Plateau miner would make a slight profit while depleting the radium reserves. treating establish application radium of radium ores, with the finished product placed in the hospitals a process industry for the domestic federal isolation the of radium and a facility Bureau of Mines entered

was really needed, they felt, was a program of federal supervision of the mining and Army, Navy, and Public Health Service for the benefit of all the people. of radium therapeutics under which would serve as prototypes control, Desiring to

for a domestic

agreement engineering

with Dr. Kelly of Johns Hopkins University and James Douglas, head of the corps of Phelps, Dodge and Company, Under this agreement, for the establishment of a the Bureau of Mines would use from

"National Radium Institute."

$150,000 supplied by Kelly and Douglas to mine one thousand tons of carnotite an efficient radium extraction process.

sixteen of the richer claims in western Colorado, and to utilize this ore to develop Kelly and Douglas would receive any radium isolated from this ore, up to a maximum of seven grams, which they would devote to American scientific and medical research.9 By the time the agreement regarding the National Radium Institute October federally initiated mounting.
13, 1913, it already

was signed on dream of a and Kelly had

was becoming apparent would bring about

that the moment was propitious Progressive Bureau of Mines had had been slowly all of the and far

to propose



the larger


radium industry.

Since April, when the

its plea for the proper utilization As increasingly popular favorable

of the radium resources, American interest an interest

first reported

the results of his cancer studies, reports expressed and Europeans interest the nation

of radium use came from European in obtaining that Late in September, an interest newspapers extended

medical conferences, radium possible, magazines throughout


began to exhibit

beyond a mere willingness to print press releases. Bureau of Mines officials campaign, New York, and other results in cancer Clear ly, the participation interested legislation obtainable and other Progressives and European with Kelly, Dr. Robert American treatment, had

By the end of 1913, with the

carrying on an intensive propaganda doctors reporting very encouraging was very intense. of federal

Abbe, senior surgeon of Saint Luke's Hospital in

and with newspapers carrying headlines warning of the radium, public interest an ambitious Franklin asking come to push for program

danger of a European monopoly of isolated moment in the radium industry. 10 1914, Secretary from both

Ear ly in January, Progressives

of the Interior

K. Lane met with them to prepare Martin D. or all of the radium the president pitchblend


of Congress,

that would reserve for the people of the United States from the domestic reserves. On January House Joint Resolution

12, Representative 185, "Authorizing carnotite,

Foster of Illinois introduced of the United States other radium-bearing

to withdraw

public lands containing

ores and minerals," and, as chairman of the House Committee on

Mines and Mining, scheduled hearings to begin as quickly as possible. 11 When the hearings began on January those present with his accounts 19, there appeared to be little, doubt that Dr. Kelly, first to testify, results stunned of radium treatment, some kind of legislation was needed and wanted.

of the miraculous

showing before and after photographs of patients like "Uncle John" of Missouri, with a massive tumor on his head and shoulder which to treat with fifty-nine photograph, hours of radium treatment, surgically it would have of his face." Yet, showing a dramatic redness remained. at Saint been necessary "to cut the man's brains out and take three-fourths Kelly reported, the swelling had disappeared and only a temporary

Following Dr. Kelly, Dr. Abbe showed casts of each case he had treated

Luke's Hospital, concluding his plea for federal development of the radium reserves by explaining that, convinced that he could obtain results even in advanced cases of cancer if he had a larger amount of radium, he had recently it. Other doctors told of their belief in the efficacy it would be dissipated large quantities attempted to acquire more, only to learn that European individuals, syndicates and countries were hoarding of radium and warned that if the government efficiently, did not take care to place it in hospitals where it could be used in quack remedies and by doctors who could not to effect cures.!2

afford sufficiently

Although the radium hearings began on a very encouraging note for Progressives, those hoping for a federally directed radium industry began to understand that there was substantial westerners resistance to their cause. In part, this was due to the opposition of to any extension of federal authority over had begun their intensive by withdrawing had interpreted states to who had become sensitized

lands within their states. program to save western

Even before the Progressives timber lands from wasteful


them from the public domain as National Forest Reserve, westerners subjugate the West. reserve, additional

the failure of free silver as evidence of collusion on the part of eastern

By 1914, with almost one third of Colorado withdrawn as forest amounts as coal, water power, oil, gas and Indian reservations, states State with mining western public domain.

Coloradoans, for example, found it easy to believe that the landless eastern were conspiring to make "crown lands" of the entire and county officials saw their respective result of federal conservation the Forest Service over their perceived

governments as verging on bankruptcy as a right to utilize timber in their

measures, and miners, who had clashed repeatedly


were especially

prone to believe every story of federal



anti-conservationist emotions. 13

alarm that the proposed legislation would lead to the withdrawal

of 50 percent of Colorado's public domain west of Denver was bound to arouse old Despite the regional appeal of anti-conservationists, they had been unsuccessful

in the past in blocking measures that the rest of the nation considered desirable, and given the emotional level of support for radium legislation, their chances of blocking it looked very bleak indeed. impressive allies. Senator However, they soon learned that they had some of Some of these were congressmen, most notably the very capable suspicious

Reed B. Smoot of Utah, who was becoming increasingly and ultimately were those most capable, that

Progressive emphasis upon federal planning as another form of "creeping socialism." Probably the most important, Progressive's radium legislation exploit the carnotite Shortly after afflicted opponents of the companies had been formed to

deposits, especially the Standard Chemical Company. vanadium, they learned a cure that their sister was

Joseph and Michael Flannery had formed the American Vanadium

Company to mine and sell Peruvian

with terminal cancer. Casting about for a possible cure, they were told that for inoperable cancer. in not

radium had shown the most promise of effecting their sister died. for it, decided Colorado Plateau. flannerys'

However, the Flannerys' efforts to obtain a supply of radium were unsuccessful, and In 1910, the Flannerys, remembering their own frustration to attempt to extract radium from the carnotite Between being able to obtaion radium, and convinced that there would soon be a great demand deposits of the 1912 the They sold their Minasragra mine, and with the proceeds began the 1910 and

task of building up an American radium industry. number and best of the carnotite properties of radium. At a cost extensive of about $650,000 Standard

Standard Chemical Company obtained from discouraged owners the largest claims in Colorado and Utah, then in 1912, hired a process and to investigate the

team of scientists to develop an economical extraction

Chemical Company had blocked out process, and experimentally

reserves of carnotite,

developed an efficient

produced about two grams of radium by the close of 1913. The company began the new year ready to produce at least a gram of radium per month, and had an order for fourteen grams from German municipalities.14

Standard naturally opposed any attempt to withdraw the radium lands so that the government could go into the radium business. they were as interested popularized. Nevertheless, the Flannerys found were themselves handicapped in their attempts to combat the Progressive legislation. First, as the Progressives in seeing that radium therapeutics were wrong in their assertions Therefore, they studiously had to avoid any intimation that Kelly, Abbe, concerning Also, the This precluded their effective use of the lingering opposition

the Bureau of Mines officials or others radium's effectiveness. to radiotherapy Progressives

on the part of much of the American medical profession. development of the radium reserves, of remaining

had laid their groundwork well; there was no question that the public and the Flannerys They were fear This being true, there reserves.

was clamoring for federal were some things certainly

apprehended that some type of legislation would be passed. worse than a withdrawal

not in favor of any form of government control over the radium industry, pathological There was a possibility that, in view of the overwhelming public effort might succeed in defeating the proposal, only to have it Finally, the Standard would need to maintain a good public the officials did not want to portray

but at the same time, they did not share their Western associates' of a withdrawal. interest, replaced a concerted

by a more rigorous policy of government control.

Chemical Company, in order to be successful, image. In the face of the great popular interest,

themselves as being willing to allow 75,000 Americans to die an agonizing death each year, just so the company could sell fourteen grams of radium to the Germans. Aware of the obstacles they faced, the company officials pursued a policy which they hoped would minimize the effectiveness Colorado Plateau, they surreptitiously of Progressive legislation, while at the On the opposition and Lane was the that same time allowing the company to maintain the best possible public image. marshalled anti-conservationist pointed out the utility of convincing miners and prospectors that Secretary In the budding miners' organizations Standard officials encouraged the of the carnotite drafting

intent on withdrawing all of the public lands of the area, thus precluding their use. belt which they controlled, informing Lane of resolutions

prospectors and miners were opposed to the suggested withdrawal, and miners from further carnotite activity.

and that if the

radium lands were taken from the public domain, this would discourage prospectors They also encouraged miners to claim all of the lands possible, which would diminish the value of a withdrawal, and provide

for a


of private

radium regardless







legislation .15 Having stimulated anti-conservation opponents of the Progressive legislation, posture. sentiment, the Standard officials came to the while the company struck a less aggressive hearings in Washington prepared to allow the Coloradoans to appear as the greatest From the outset, they revealed their opposition to the government entering to talk of the positive aspects of Standard's young physicist exposition who directed on the developmental work. work having

into an area that private industry was willing and prepared to develop, but each of the officers showed a preference Thus, Charles radium research and aspirations done his graduate laboratory, of Standard. H. Viol, the brilliant the company's

gave a detailed

Two years a Ph.D. at the age of twenty-seven,

work under Herbert N. McCoy at the University of Chicago, this physicist impressed the committee with his grasp of the facts Similarly, both Dr. James C. Gray, Secretary and of Standard's

young Colorado-born

rela ting to the radium industry.

General Counsel for Standard, and Dr. William H. Cameron, director

Radium Clinic, tried in their testimony to convey the best possible company image. Joseph To Flannery, President of Standard Chemical Company, was present at every session and carried on a very calm, sophisticated company's three years of preparation during this time. or James F. Byrnes of South Carolina, who opposed the legislation, often quite rough discussion of the difficulties of his and of the success the company had achieved who were willing to lock horns with anyone In response to the members of the

Far from showing any inclination to dispute with Chairman Foster Flannery simply continued to insist that his company had he received from unsympathetic

a right to pursue its objecti ves unimpeded by federal control. handling committee, composure: Flannery showed remarkable self-restraint.

Only twice did he lose his sentiment in Colorado, with certain

when Foster persisted in questioning him about his reasons for sending a anti-conservationist

telegram outlining a plan for fostering

and when Byrnes needled him concerning his production of or association quack remedies.16 Despite their public restraint, Standard and other withdrawals

opponents indeed had done

their homework, and as the hearings progressed, it became evident that there was a fair amount of resistance Also, the effectiveness to further from the Western public domain. because prospectors, of a withdrawal was questionable


such a possibility, had laid claim to much of the carnotite



miners were insisting that, if given the chance, they could mine all of the radium the nation needed, and were asking that the federal government instead develop a policy that would encourage suggested that finished product. On the last day of the radium hearings, Lane appeared before the Committee Representatives. After pointing out that Secretary of the Interior Mining of the Franklin K. House of Progressive on Mines and their activity. Representative Taylor of Colorado had even it and distribute the the government buy the miner's ore, refine

Westerners had misunderstood

motives for suggesting a withdrawal" of land, he recommended that the legislation be drawn up in a way that would reflect the needs expressed by Western miners, and that would emphasize government encouragement ore, rather than withdrawal of land.17 six sections established each year, of mining, and purchase of miners'

On January 31, 1914, Chairman Foster introduced House Resolution


the federal government as the sole purchaser of radium mined of a claim of radium On February money for the construction and maintenance

from the federal domain, required a minimum of four months development and provided facilities. extraction On February 3, the Committee

on Mines and Mining reported

back to the House, with the recommendation that H.R. 12741 be passed. on Mines and Mining introduced copy of H.R. 12741.18 proponents to anticipate on the early ratification. Plateau Senate Committee

7, Senator Thomas B. Walsh of Montana, a leading Progressive and Chairman of the Senate Bill 4405, which was a every indication

As the Senate began discussion of the radium legislation, Bureau of were awaiting and with their successfully developing a radium extraction and prospectors favorable legislation, reports Colorado

Mines technicians news of its of the

were Miners

process for the federal industry.

inception. need for

Leading newspapers and magazines for weeks had been boosting the cause with highly of radium treatments discussions and philanthropists were announcing willingness to do what they Walsh's informal check on the Then, just at the moment

could to bring radium within the reach of the needy. disposition of the Senate indicated of apparent success, disaster struck.

that few Senators planned to expose themselves

as enemies of mankind by openly opposing the legislation.

During the fall of 1913, when the Bureau of Mines officials that Representative cancer. responses, therapeutics, possessed. During the weeks following Kelly's treatments, Robert G. Bremner of New Jersey generous to treat inclination the potential that also sensing

and Doctor Kelly with terminal so many of his radium

were struggling to arouse popular interest in their radium crusade, Kelly had learned was afflicted motivated Acting out of that and perhaps Kelly offered

value for popularizing

Bremner with the gram of radium which he Bremner appeared radium. to improve Much of the

markedly, a fact not lost on the proponents of government was a reflection time of the of the successful propagandization

enthusiasm for radium expressed by Americans in November and December of 1913 of Bremner's case, and by the from New Jersey" had House hearings, the "smiling Representative

become the symbol of the power of the wonder element. However, late in January, 1914, Bremner began to fail rapidly. February 6, much of the blind public faith in radioactive pUblic now began to give credence to insistent that radium had great limitations in the treatment public mood, the New York Times, previously therapeutics, expressed the grew cautious, then hostile. ensuing disillusionment When he died on The medical men of radium Post on cures died with him.

warnings by influential so active

of cancer. Reflecting the changing in its support of the somewhat Washington prematurely,

The editor if

succinctly, a speculative

February 10. Advocates of government radium had created false hopes in a world of pain, he accused. They had generated boom in the mineral regions. leaders alike. They had upset the mental equilibrium of medical and governmental "All are now recovering," somebody of authority sources,

continued the Post, "but are left in such a state of mind

by the wrench of disillusionment as to prompt the suggestion that there should be to protect society from frenzied science.,,19 to the proposed radium legislation effort was that now came from several Chemical Company of the Standard Although opposition

the most effective

officials. At the close of the House hearings, these men were less than pleased. True, the withdrawal plan had been dropped, but only in order to accomodate a much more rigorous policy of government interests prospectors, development; a policy which threatened Furthermore, their the own much more than a withdrawal would have. miners,

and many of the leaders from the Colorado Plateau had expressed a real

interest sentiment

in the new plan, thus seriously undercutting favoring Federal control, the and even the traditionally conservative

Standard's support. Progressives

With public backing the


legislation, the bill.

people of the Colorado Plateau

anxious to have the program implemented, there seemed to be little chance to block Nevertheless, February the Standard officials had determined to provide all of the sources had been their

opposition they could, and between January 28, when the House hearings ended, and 10, when the Senate hearings began, they had found some definite While it was true that most of the miners and prospectors of encouragement. as first feared. First, the apostasy on the Colorado Plateau was not as pervasive to sell their ore at a profit, they were not and that

seduced by the promise of an opportunity

entirely satisfied with those sections of the bill that required miners to operate claims at least four months out of the year, under the threat of forfeiture, the Secretary of of the Interior into what had the sole responsibility would appear to be a miners would receive for their ore. dissatisfaction Furthermore,

for fixing the price that repudiation of the bill.

Properly handled, Standard could fan this spark and miners who could hope to benefit from

the number of prospectors

the Progressive plan was very small (less than 500) and few of them were courageous enough to oppose Standard's position. At the same time, Standard could count on wholehearted of very influential men from the Mountain West. Committee on Mines and Mining: John F. Shafroth, support from a number Two of these were Senators on the who had served two terms as anti-conservationism, as in his state, and Albert B.

governor of Colorado, and was known for his irreconcilable well as his close association with the big mining interests

Fall of New Mexico, who was moving down the road that led finally to the Teapot Dome scandals. Also, Senator Reed B. Smoot of Utah could be counted on to bring his tremendous Senatorial influence and that of his Utah colleague, George Sutherland. In addition, there were some influential mining men and others from the West who could to sell radium and thus would be willing to not hope to benefit from the opportunity

testify against any plan of federal control of part of the mining. industry. With the hope of support from the above men, encouraged by the subsidence of popular support following the death of Bremner, and with S. 4405 embodying the type of legislation that the company officials feared most, Standard itself was prepared to

wage an all-out campaign against the bill. discussed at length the difficulties,

As in the House hearings, Joseph Flannery and risks taken Flannery by Standard to take in the


pioneering a new industry and stressed the injustice of forcing Standard to compete with the federal government. More important, was ready offensive with a plan of his own. If the Progressives truly were interested and economically, government in seeing

radium produced quickly, efficiently company could supply the federal maximum of $80,000 per gram. Now, he was prepared would give a contract federal control

why not let Standard do it?

At the beginning of the House hearings, Flannery had off the cuff suggested that his with 200 grams of radium for a However, he had not stressed this offer sUbsequently.

to make a firm offer of the 200 grams, if the government for it at $80,000 per gram, and agree to drop all plans of The government could never hope to provide

over the industry.

radium so cheaply, quickly or in such amounts, Flannery argued, and the Standard plan would obviate the necessity of government competition.20 Probably Standard never seriously considered the possibility that the government would accept the offer, for it would in effect 1914. give the company a monopoly in the sensitive about such things in radium industry, and congressmen were particularly

But the proposal did center discussion on the area which Standard felt was was willing and prepared to develop. The

most advantageous to it: whether the federal government should be permitted to take over an industry that private enterprise Progressives from the beginning had based their need for legislation on the premise that the nation's radium resources were very limited, that these were being exploited by Europeans, and that Federal planning would be necessary in order to adequately develop these domestically. and other opponents During the two weeks of the Senate hearings, Flannery insistently that the carnotite of the of S. 4405 repeated

Colorado Plateau contained at least 900 grams of radium instead of the maximum of 200 grams that the Bureau of Mines estimated, that Standard and other companies were prepared to furnish all of the radium that the nation could use at much under the market price, and that this could be done domestically, with private capital. The Progressives who had fought for a federally regulated industry sensed than of immediately the importance the federal government. of their opponents' suggestion. Progressives doubted this. What these men were acceptance

really saying was that they could develop the nation's resources better Furthermore,

Standard's industry,

plan would mean gIVing that company a virtual abandoning the independent

monopoly of the radium and technicians from

miners to the whims of the company, and Still, there was no mistaking the Socialism, which would eventually in the United States. Fearing

excluding the Bureau of Mines and other government scientists an active role in the development of the industry. appeal Standard's offer had for many congressmen. be relegated best chance constituent to become a viable political entity

to the political trash heap by most Americans, was then having its one suspicion, most congressmen instinctively shied away from legislation that in the radium legislation potential of the element, that government However, many legislation could they were being shipped off

might be viewed as socialistic.

They had shown interest curative

because they had been convinced of the great for the benefit action was the congressmen would set. enterprise

because they were disturbed to learn that national reserves only alternative to this wasteful

of Europeans alone, and because it had appeared exploitation. the uncomfortable with the precedent

had felt


Now, Standard's offer revealed that it would be possible to have private play the role that many had assumed only the federal government were to succeed in their scientists bid for radium legislation,

play in establishing an adequate domestic radium industry. If the Progressives too difficult. would have to blunt the thrust of the Standard proposal. Government had made a careful fields, and estimated This did not promise to be survey of the carnotite

that there was a total reserve of less than 200 grams of radium Yet here was a company that insisted it could it

in the ore of the Colorado Plateau.

produce 200 grams for the government as well as fulfilling its other commitments.

appeared that Standard was either deluding itself and the nation as to its ability, or the company had a monopoly of the radium reserves.2l The threat for the nation. of a monopoly in such an important area as the radium reserves, could offset the appeal of Standard's With a display of dynamic leadership, the Senate Progressives support, rally the miners and prospectors if properly utilized, align congressional proposal to provide radium could to the support of the However, as the Senate lacked such

bill, and amass popular sentiment for government regulation. hearings went on, it became increasingly apparent leadership. In contrast to Representative Foster,

that the Progressives

Walsh was unable to use his position as

Chairman of the Committee on Mines and Mining to much advantage. advocate Plateau, they of the legislation, he nonetheless understanding that had existed at the close of the House hearings. the miners were so convinced that the legislation spending their energy discussing the possible were

A staunch

failed to build upon the foundation of On the Colorado of certain Yet Walsh nor was going to pass that ill-effects

provisions that opponents of the legislation brought to their attention.

any of the other Progressives ever bothered to assure the miners that portions of the bill that truly were unwise would be changed or to warn the miners that the bill might not pass if they did not show their united support for it. Even in the hearings steered the themselves, it was Senator Shafroth of Colorado who guided the direction they were to take, rather than Walsh. Shafroth carefully, at times even insistently, lines of questioning away from areas that would establish and in other ways indicated his opposition to the bill.22 Even given Shafroth's desire to have passed. carnotite especially competent committee the need for legislation, opposition, Walsh could

have been much more aggressive in his defense of a bill which he expressed a great When Flannery declared that he did not believe that Standard because the petroleum Walsh might have pointed out that Standard Oil Chemical company could ever get a monopoly of the radium industry, deposits were so extensive, Company had done a pretty good job with the much more extensive

deposits. Standard' suggestion that it would be prevented from a monopoly because of the $100 per year assessment work required on each claim could have occasioned the reminder that miners had traditionallly been quite imaginative should have little when it came to trouble extracting King gave deciding when they had done $100 worth of assessment work, and that even if the law were faithfully complied with, Standard $100 worth of ore from any claim worth keeping. with private industry, When ex-representative

a speech warning of the dangers of the federal government entering into competition Walsh might have brought out the fact that King was paid to the do so by the Radium Company of America, and he could have questioned propriety of a judge accepting money from a private company. Quite simply, however, ineptitude Walsh and most of the other Progressives apparent interests, when contrasted exhibited an that is particularly with the vigor of Senator

Shafroth, Joseph Flannery, and the other opponents. offensive against the corporate

Instead of conducting a vigorous

Walsh placidly questioned witnesses as to

the number of men employed on the Colorado Plateau,

the number of claims Standard Late in the

had, whether Standard bought ore from independent miners, and the names of persons buying ore; facts which had been amply discussed in the House hearings. hearings, achieve the Bureau of Mines officials with government support, suggested testified hopefully about insisting that what they could However, Senator basis, and

they could provide radium at less

than half the price Shafroth challenged By the Progressives close

by Standard

Chemical Company.

their ability to do so on anything but a laboratory destroyed much of the effectiveness of their argument.23 of the hearings on February 28, even the had little hope that the bill would pass. Walsh did not report that he did not. Once so insistent

most starry-eyed as to the until

urgency of the legislation, consideration,

the bill back to the Senate

March 16, and then, when Senator Smoot of Utah asked him if he wanted immediate Walsh indicated The Senate Report 348, embodying and the need for legislation because the Committee on Mines and Mining recommendation for passage of the bill did point out the limited value of radium therapeutics, most radium was going abroad, and private refiners in a manner that indicated monopolistic tendencies. were grabbing up western lands But there was little of the fervor that a portion

manifested in the earlier House Report, and Senator Shafroth indicated of the Committee wished to file a minority report.24

During the next few weeks, there was just enough chance that the Progressives might yet be able to rekindle support for the bill that, as a precautionary the opponents made an effort to block serious discussion. the affairs Thomas R. Marshall, conducting of the Senate, expressed measure, Though Vice President a real interest of this ploy of

in the bill and provided a method by which it could be discussed each day at 1:00 p.m., Senators Smoot and Sutherland of Utah negated the effectiveness by spending the entire Marshall's action. time allotted each day in a discussion of the propriety

On May 1, Walsh asked that discussion of S. 4405 begin at the end

of the end of the day, so that it could remain as unfinished business and be disposed of the next day. Smoot suggested that no one would object to its being discussed the next day, so there was no need to introduce it previously. be discussed from time to time, and for years afterward, each session of Congress. But the drive for federal The next day, there was The bill continued to it in of the radium Walsh re-introduced no mention of the bill, nor on the days immediately following.


reserves had failed.25 The failure unanswered. in the treatment of the radium legislation in 1914 left of other a number of questions uses for radium were radium did Some of these, such as the extent to which radium truly was effective of cancer, and the possibility Even in large concentrations, in the treatment

partially answered in the next few years. others had hoped. pain, decreasing persons afflicted treatment But it did prove effective deformity,

not prove to be the conclusive cure for most types of cancer that Kelly, Abbe and of uterine cancer, and lessening the useful life of the of many surface cancers, as well as being very useful as a palliative, and in many instances prolonging Its application with terminal cancer.

Immediate uses for radium aside from cancer to other diseases of quack remedies guaranteed

proved to be much more disappointing.

was very limited, despite the early rise and persistence

to cure the user of everything from rheumatism to bad dreams. Also, a much heralded claim on the part of Standard Chemical Company that radium residue was a highly effectual plant fertilizer proved ill-founded, at least from an economic standpoint. criticized by those who felt the nation's reserves More successful, though bitterly

should be used for loftier purposes, was the use of radium in paint for coating cheap watch hands, instrument dials, and gun sights.26 In addition to its use in cancer treatment, fascinated catch conduct cost, that with radium's effect quack remedies and luminescent paint, biologists who continued to be who continued to However, work. obtained intriging the Forced to at great but not there was a demand for limited amounts by scientists: special properties

on living cells, chemists who were intrigued by the implications of radioactivity. material, the

of this highly unstable element, and physicists

glimpses of the revolutionary research

failure of the radium legislation seriously hampered this scientific with minute amounts of radioactive found it impossible to explore elements. scientists adequately

immediately applicable potential of radioactive even such elementary ascertained

Research was so restricted the task of obtaining the could ill of the

knowledge as the melting point of uranium was not

with any precision, leaving to future scientists

answers to this and many other basic questions at a moment when scientists afford the precious time wasted.27 Another vital question left unresolved in 1914 was that of the extent domestic uranium reserve.

This had been an important source of disagreement during

the months when the Progressives

were pushing for radium legislation,

with the

Bureau of Mines officials insisting that the reserve was extremely limited in order to highlight the urgency of stopping the flow of radium to Europe. legislation that The failure of the to study such and the would have provided for an agency with authority

problems made this a moot question, though the Bureau of Mines officials

leaders of Standard Chemical Company continued a debate on this subject until at least 1920. To a future generation of Americans, apprized suddenly of the fearsome reality of nuclear fission, the extent of the domestic reserve would be highly important. In that day, important decisions would be made under the false assumption of developing the national effort.

that the reserve was almost depleted. Finally, left unanswered were questions regarding the practicality a national resource providing through the a federally directed program, with government market, and offering incentives

for individual

Anti-conservationists miners, and other

and other opponents of the radium legislation westerners were a special breed of men,

had insisted at who were that so they

the outset that this type of program would never work, declaring that prospectors, individualistic, altered that part freedom loving and suspicious of the federal government

would never support a Federal withdrawal or otherwise the program offered of legislators that with no loss of individual radium therapeutics reflecting

co-operate. freedom.

This view was Nevertheless, the of

somewhat when some of the opponents became aware of the great benefit not to a conviction on the but to a distrust attitudes as well as their by private

ultimate failure of the radium bills should be attributed, federal control. enterprise unresolved. When legislators, constituent

was worthless,

own, were compelled to choose between and one controlled Thus, the question as to the feasability

a radium industry controlled government,

by the federal

they chose the former. program was left

of a government directed

Yet this was an important question, and, as miners and prospectors began they pondered what might have been if the other

to realize that a radium industry controlled by a few large companies afforded little opportunity for individual initiative, alternative potential, would have been adopted. when their ore would be sought not for its curative force waiting to be unleashed from its but for the awesome destructive One day in the future,

atoms, Colorado Plateau miners would have another chance for federal direction.

Other papers this writer has presented time in which the nation's uranium vanadium, and finally, strategically As a briefest legislation, for fuel for nuclear

have focused on developments during the were exploited for radium, then and fission. It is a most interesting, after the failure


important story, but also one that would require days to tell in detail. of outlines, we might mention that of the radium a number of companies, most notably the Standard developed a virtual companies, the Katanga pitchblende Chemical Company,

developed the uranium reserves for its radium content when Belgian interests Belgian Congo to corner after control which two large

with some success until 1923, uranium mines of the There then United States virtual for about decade,

monopoly of the radium industry. in Colorado Plateau the Union Carbide carnotite subsidiary,

followed a major slump in interest Vanadium Corporation, of the industry, production for American entrance vanadium

and the Vanadium Corporation producing carnotite the war effort,

of America, obtained

for its vanadium content. government United selecting States

With the

into World War II, the federal

began to encourage Vanadium to

administer the Metals Reserve program, which encouraged individual as well as large company involvement research the in vanadium production. The government also began intensive needs of to the that led to the creation led to the creation of the atomic bomb, with fissionable uranium 235 of the Atomic Energy Commission, and fashioned

and plutonium as its base. nation development

After the war was over, the continued strategic

of a major domestic industry, of the Progressive uranium

in the spirit of the proposed encouraging need, the of

radium legislation When sufficient government the

Era, with the federal government for any foreseeable electricity, sector. strategic

individual participation

and serving as the market for all domestic uranium produced. was produced and development the private point, of a major industry If the domestic cheated, utilizing uranium for a it

provided basic research industry returned to that

uranium for nuclear reactors domestic industry generation brought.

which would generate

and most control

would have ended at of independent

few would have felt generation

miners who had waited and prayed for their ship to come enjoyed the prosperity boom for uranium producers still lay the nation's

in had lived to see it safely home, and another But as fate would have it, the greatest in the future.

The AEC decision to continue the purchase of uranium even after

strategic needs

needs were met resulted from a fundamental shift in emphasis from military peacetime application of nuclear of atomic energy for electrical industry power If the generation power by private was to come

to a broad


about, the AEC realized, the federal goverment would have to subsidize the uranium industry until the demand for nuclear fuel from private government support. by guaranteeing sources ended the need for In May, 1956 the AEC confirmed its commitment to the industry its ore procurement program until at least 1966.28 of peacetime nuclear energy, the AEC power to make long-range of electricity was of

By deciding to push the development plans for the benefit of the nation. to become a reality, at least before

provided a striking example of the federal government's such a mammoth, long-range, risky venture. fosil fuels, it would have to be initiated create between

No individual utility company could have funded If nuclear generation the near exhaustion of the world reserves by public rather than private enterprise. could

In committing itself to support the uranium industry until private enterprise riSky gamble. The commission estimated that the private market

its own market, the AEC put its prestige on the line for what was at best a would develop 1965 and 1970, but there was no way to be certain. Much depended upon of

the utility companies' willingness to participate necessary to make nuclear energy competitive electricity. for many years. At a time when many experts optimistic, 1964 these increased nuclear plants capable of generating estimates

in the development of the technology with fossil fuels for the generation

There was a possibility that nuclear energy might not become competitive were scoffing at its estimates as being far too would have As early as were

the AEC in 1962 projected began to appear

that by 1980 the United States too conservative, a capacity

40,000,000 kilowatts of electricity.

and in 1966 they of at least

to 80,000-110,000 MWE. At the close of 1968 they were revised upward 150,000-170,000 on the

again with experts in the industry projecting MWE for 1980.29 domestic uranium industry. For, despite reserves Instead of tottering

The coming of age of the nuclear power industry had a marked effect on the edge of extinction, it was apparent

it showed

more vigor in the late 1960s than it had during the feverish days of the mid-1950s. that once seemed inexhaustible, by 1966 that there was not enough uranium to supply the projected fuel needs of plants until 1980.

The result was a mining boom of unprecedented state, feet. railroad, Indian, and other lands.


In 1967 and 1968 alone, work also

uranium companies acquired mineral rights to over sixteen million acres of federal, Drilling and other exploratory reached a new high. The 1968 total In the peak boom year of 1957 companies had drilled 9.2 million was more than double that figure. Even the uranium stock spree, returned with part of its

market, once looked upon as a colorful, one-time former allure)O

As has happened so many times before in the history of the uranium industry, however, the great promise of sustained prosperity once again proved illusory. few heady years there produced. reserves that there was a great demand for all of the uranium that effort to establish states For a could be

So great was the demand throughout the world and so limited the known was even a concerted a uranium cartel with their

committed to pegging uranium at a price of $40 per pound. But if uranium producers in the Intermountain role and utility companies were grateful feel so comfortable about irresponsible with nuclear energy. of fissionable to radiation, were satisfied for nuclear energy in a day of skyrocketing Some Americans were genuinely concerned that might fall into the hands of accident that could These fears Three Mile In so doing, system into the air. nuclear power

costs for increasingly scarce fossil fuels, there were others in the nation who did not the generation materials

individuals, the real danger of a nuclear accident

expose large populations

and the nagging question of how safely to Edison Company's

dispose of the mounting accumulations of very dangerous nuclear waste. were fed in March 1979 when one of Metropolitan

Island turbines near Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, shut itself down. The plant's operators became concerned about assuring that coolant not overfill the reactor. they overrode the plant's core cooling safety functions, despite warnings, allowing the core to melt and release hurt when almost everything reactor low-grade radiation insistent

Even though more than two million people lived in the site area, not one person was that could go wrong did at a sizeable United States. in an urban area of the eastern Indeed, the radiation release

was only 1.4 mrem, which compares with an annual dose of 14 mrem for persons choosing to live in a brick home instead of a frame one, or 80 additional mrem's for persons choosing to live in the higher altitude of Denver, Colorado, instead of living next to the Three Mile Island plant in Pennsylvania.3l These facts might have been

reassuring to a nation that had been fed an almost constant used their skill and media accessibility Persistent, to specific substantial construction endless


diet by the

media. Instead, while the nuclear power industry sat by meekly, the environmentalists to play on the fears of the nation, and this cost overruns, caused partly by ever-stricter opposition piles of paperwork required by swarming in the accident became the symbol of nuclear disaster. federal safety requirements, nuclear government agencies, United States. become a glut. ore than there that rising and sometimes raging environmentalist


and the growing problem of the disposition of nuclear waste

have led most utility companies to seek other means for generating electricity

At least te'!1porarily the predicted shortages of uranium have instead At this moment there are more domestic uranium reserves of unmined has ever been before, than the total including the vast new deposits of southern belt estimated by the Bureau of Mines or miners and There is an adequate at the options, most efficient, recovery and

Utah and Northern Arizona, as well as a remaining reserve in the old carnotite is far greater Chemical reserve Standard operators Company in 1914. There are hundreds of skilled

wanting very much to be involved in the industry. that nuclear power generation mills, both

demand for refined uranium from nations who have looked carefully and have determined and ultimately environmental an industry In part, above. new, highly efficient safety, is the cheapest, of uranium the safest alternative available to them. from the standpoint

There are also a number of at Blanding, Utah, or the

such as the Energy Fuels facility for escalation that

virtually unused Anaconda mill at Grants, New Mexico. A quick glance would indicate with immediate potential the substantial depression to a boom mode, but a boom the domestic as described the most of an almost certainly will not happen in the near future. is being felt throughout of environmentalists, uranium industry is due to the concerted Environmentalist the uranium industry. concerted afternoon truculent effectiveness, efforts

acti vism, however, does not by itself explain the plight of Most Americans' environmental concerns, even after when Yuppie America is faced with the terror

pleas of a Robert Redford, have a quality of vagueness that blunts their especially brownout that would cut off power for air conditioners, environmentalist opposition, with the additional specter or for the heating of trembling fault

of backyard swimming pools and jacuzzis.

Also, it should be noted that the most

lines in close proximity to major population centers, Colorado Plateau producers,

did not succeed in stopping the in California. see a In part of lazy,

completion of either the Diablo Canyon or the San Onofre reactors

disdainful as they are of environmentalists,

much more formidable enemy in the form of the federal government itself. this is a new manifestation length in this paper. incompetent of the old antagonism that The stories echoing throughout the Colorado Plateau

we have examined at some they have tried, and so have of that earlier resistance years. to In

individuals who have failed at everything to the flag, are reminiscent intensity

become federal employees, and of federal policies so foolish that even children pause while pledging allegiance federal encroachment. Plateau general, has taken But this fine old tradition of federal bashing on the Colorado in recent

on an increased

and furtiveness

there is a major concern by residents There are now laws that

of the area regarding the slipping of prohibit the collecting of firewood

their quality of life that had always been one of their major reasons for choosing to live where they do. without specific Forest Service. cold winter day. of southeastern a plastic bag. as ten different permission from the Bureau of Land Management or the National One may no longer float down the San Juan River without a permit, Mountain lions are protected, More specifically and even coddled, but in large areas

or shoot a deer, even in season, in much of the area, or build a fire in a cave on a Utah, hikers are required to carry out their feces when they leave in the concerns of uranium producers are regulations that is done, with copies sent to as many available since the Mining Act roads, of the right policy. Even more and mine by

that require reports on almost everything some conflict with its directives.

government agencies, and with one of these, at least, certain to find The old perquisites,

of 1872, of being able to build a cabin on a mine site, of the right to use timber for mine and mill needs, of the right to make access and exploration a mine site threatening conflicting inspectors. Nor do most people in Southeastern the federal government are mitigated Utah feel that the miseries engendered by the state of Utah. Rather, the state at will, are now highly proscribed rights, by federal the inundation to disturb the surface in the search for mineral bodies, and of being able to abandon than the loss of traditional directives, of paperwork of unbribable

is the ultimate horror for mine operators

government, which they feel at best is caught up with watching out for the interests

of urban Utah, shows little real concern for the plight of its transmontane domain. If it thinks of Southeastern affluent urbanites, Utah at all, they believe, it thinks of it as a playground for flying in the face of the opposition to the local desire to have a of bureaucracy does not explain and its policies, when not deliberately

wishes of the local people (as in the state's In actuality, adequately state the overburden

nuclear waste repository), often seem equally repressive. of two layers the woes of the uranium industry. and have found ways to The people of the Colorado Plateau thread the maze of restrictions and

must remember that other industries are faced with the same problems of federal and policies, regulations. Furthermore, government this writer has never been convinced that the federal, or exists simply to make people's that big government, lives miserable on the by its very existence is

even the state

Colorado Plateau.

To· simply state

incompetent is at once illogical, and even more important, discourages the search for an imaginative solution to the problems besetting the industry. It is


that, itself



environmentalists for its current


federal woes.

and Part

state of this Other

regulation, responsibility industries

the industry

is responsible procH vity

could be the very

on the part of many to simply conclude jungles. kind of Rather

that government is hopelessly inept, and should be avoided whenever possible. do not assume this, and have found paths through bureaucratic the that uranium obfuscatory industry policy lacks as even the most fundamental of would allow it to put adequate pressure on government. manifestation Furthermore, organization than


simply the


bungling, the industry might ask if there are other industries in the nation that might serve as role models in ascending out of the miasma of passiveness in which it is now mired. It might also ask if there are other industries that benefit from the present and look carefully at the efforts they The coal industry, or petroleum industry, for on, and perhaps even adding to, the there are companies A decision to chaos in regards to nuclear power generation, have made to influence federal policy. plight of the uranium industry.

example, could hardly be blamed for capitalizing

Even within the industry itself,

who not only hold large reserves of uranium, but also of fossil fuels.

exploit the current edginess over available petroleum reserves, especially if they felt that a combination of larger reserves and less consumption would lessen the future attractiveness of oil, could seem quite rational to at least some companies with

uranium and oil reserves. In analyzing the problems facing the uranium industry, one of the most cogent is the fact that, so far, it has shown little ability to utilize its inherent strengths. with the major constraints of electric put on nuclear power generation by regulatory sensitive to the concerns of environmentalists, parts of the world. more efficient alternative there is no easily exploitable Even source in most agencies

power that in the long term will be economically competetive Furthermore, a new generation now awaits energy utilization. in respect statistics that reactors Additionally, there

of safer, more manageable, and is no viable Shortly after casualties of chance that a

to nuclear

to cost in human lives.

Chernobyl, Dr. Robert Gale, who gained worldwide acclaim for treating that disaster, gave some interesting such a devastating similar accident were substituted event. He reported there is a 25 percent

regarding the possibility of a repeat of

could occur in the Soviet Union within the next ten years, which However, if coal for nuclear fuel, he reported,

could cause as many as 25,000 deaths in the next seventy years.

one million persons might die in the Soviet Union alone from causes incidental to coal use.32 If the uranium industry is to utilize milling capacity to produce cheap, clean, safe electricity Soylent Green brownouts. come when the portals its reserves, its skilled workers and its within the near future, it must convince the nation of its capacity on a scale that will obviate the specter of lethargy, of governmental control, the day will On the other If the industry chooses to maintain its current of once-busy

spending its time complaining of the strictures

mines will sag closed, and the dumps of a

thousand mines will wash to the San Juan, and ultimately to the sea.

hand, there have been other bleak times in the history of the uranium industry, and if, in that day when the Progressives roared, a small company like Standard Chemical could take on the establishment insisting that and tenacity, and win, in this day when even presidents are big government has grown too big, an industry so important to our

nation's well being should succeed in making its needs known.

With sufficient effort

another great chapter in the history of the domestic uranium industry

will be added, and compressors and blasting powder will once again compete with the pervasive quiet of a summer day on the Colorado Plateau.

Footnotes Ilnterview with Preston V. Redd, Blanding, Utah, January 1, 1964. A typed transcript of the tape recording of this interview is available in the California State University, Fullerton, Oral History Collection, and in Special Collections, Clark Library, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah. A search of San Juan County, Utah, Fee and Entry Records, County Courthouse, Monticello, tor the period from 1896 through 1906 showed that Wetherill failed to record his claim. However, Redd found the discovery monument with a claim paper inside when he followed Wetherill's directions to the claim in 1943. For an amplified treatment of most of the material in this paper, see the author's Ph.D. dissertation, "A History of the Uranium Industry on the Colorado Plateau" (University of Southern California, 1970), 278 pp. 2Howard W. Balsley, "Address given before the Moab, Utah, Rock, Gem and Mineral Society," May 12, 1960, p. S <Copy in author's possession). Kathleen Bruyn, Uranium Country (Boulder: University of Colorado Press, 1955), p. 99; "Uranium," Salt Lake Mining Review, February 23, 1914, p. 15; David Lavender, One Man's West (Garden City, New Y~rk: Doubleday, 1956), pp. 304-5. United States Geological Survey, Mineral Resources of the United States, 1901 (Washington, D.C.: 1902), p. 270; J. M. Boutwell, "Vanadium and Uranium in Southeastern Utah," United States Geological Survey, Bulletin 260 (Washington, D.C.: 1905), pp. 200-210; Don Sorenson, "Wonder Mineral: Utah's Uranium," Utah Historical Quarterly XXXI (Summer, 1963), 282-3; Mineral Resources, 1906, p. 526; Richard B. Moore and Karl L. Kithil, "A Preliminary Report on Uranium, Radium, and Vanadium," United States Bureau of Mines, Bulletin 70 (Washington, D.C.: 1913), pp. 9-29; Herman Heck and William G. Haldane, "Study of Uranium and Vanadium Belts, Southern Colorado," Colorado State Bureau of Mines Report, 1905-6, passim. 4Mineral Resources, 1906, pp. 526, 539; 1907, p. 722; 1908, pp. 10, 742, 748; 1909, p. 587; 1910, pp. 360, 759, 763. 5Robert Abbe, "The Subtle Power of Radium," Transactions of the American Surgical Association, xxn (1904), 253; Louis Wickham and Paul Degrais, "Radium: Its Uses in Cancer and Other Diseases," Contemporary, XCVIII (August, 1904), 174-lS8; Charles Stuart Gager, "Effects of the Rays of Radium on Plants," Memoirs of the New York Botanical Garden, IV (December 2, 1908), passim; "Action of Radium Upon the Embryo," Scientific American Supplement, LXXn (October 7, 1911), 237; William Allen Pursey, "Biological Effects of Radium," Scientific American Supplement, xxn (July 22, 1911), 56; Sir James Mackenzie Davidson, "Vital Effects of Radium and Other Rays," Nature, LXXXVIII (February 29, 1912), 600-602; "The Biological Effects of Radium," Science, XXXIII (June 30, 1911), 1001-1005; Davidson, pp. 600-602; Interview with Dr. Fred Zimmerman, Whittier, Calitornia, May 4, 1967; Davidson, p. 602; Emile F. Grapf, "Recent Investigations on the Use of Radium for Malignant Diseases," Radium, I (May, 1913), 10-14; Worthington Seaton Russel, "Radium in Cancer: Its Scope ot Usefulness and Its Limitations,"

Scientific American, CX (January 17, 1914), 65; "Recent Contributions Radium Therapy," Radium, IV (October, 1914), 1. 6Mineral Resources, 1912, p. 1008; Bulletin 70, pp. 32-35.


7Char les L. Parsons, et a1., "Extraction and Recovery of Radium, Uranium and Vanadium from Carnotite," U.S. Bureau of Mines, Bulletin 104 (Washington, D.C.: 1916), p. 13; Charles L. Parsons, "Our Radium Resources," Address to the 16th Annual Convention of the American Mining Congress, Philadelphia, October 20-24, 1913, as quoted in Scientific American Supplement, LXXVI (November 22, 1913), 322-323; "America's Waste of Radium," Literary Digest, XLVI (May 17, 1913), 1120; Charles L. Parsons, "Our Radium Resources," Journal of Industrial and Engineering Chemistry (November, 1913), pp. 943-946; Charles L. Parsons, "Uranium and Radium Situation," Scientific American Supplement, LXXV (June 14, 1913), 374-375; Charles L. Parsons, "Our Radium Resources," Science, XXXVIII (October 31, 1913), 612-620; "Radium for Everybody," Independent, LXXVI (November 6, 1913), 244; "American Radium," Independent, LXXVI (November 27, 1913), 406; "Radium Resources of the United States," Science, XXXIX (January 9, 1914), 60-61; "For a Government Corner in Radium," Literary Digest, XLVIII (January 17, 1914), 92; Richard B. Moore and Karl L. Kithil, "Radium Sources in the United States," Engineering Magazine, XLVI (February, 1914), 815-818; "To Safeguard Radium," Outlook, CVI (January 10, 1914), 56-57; John L. Cochrane, "Where and How Radium is Obtained," Scientific American, CX (February 14, 1914), 147; "Increasing Gra vity of the World's Radium Crisis," Current Opinion, LVI (March, 1914), 199-200; James Middleton, "Conserving Radium to Treat Cancer," World's Work, XXVII (March, 1914), 554-564; New York Times, October 6, 1913, Sec. I, p. 3, Col. 2; New York Times, December 28, 1913, Sec. II, p. 1, Col. 8. 8Bulletin 104, pp. 13-14. 9Bulletin 70, p. 7; New York Times, December 28, 1913, Sec.II, p. 7, co1.S; House, Radium Hearings, pp. 195-196; Bulletin 104, pp. 7-14. 10New York Times, October 6, 1913, sec. I, P. 3, col. 2; December 2, Sec. I, P. 10, col. 3. 11House, Radium Hearings, pp. 162, 176; Science, XXXIX (January 9, 1914), 60-61; U.S. Congress, Congressional Record, LI, part 2, 63d Cong., 2d sess., January 12, 1914, p. 1553; U.S. Congress, House, House Reports, 63d Cong., 2d sess., Volume I, Report 214, p. 1. 12House, Radium Hearings, pp. 6-9; 14-16; 21-28. 13House, Radium Hearings, pp. 42-43, 95, 117, 159, 192, 262-264; Senate, Radium Hearings pp. 48-51, 120-122. 14Senate, Radium Hearings, pp. Radium Hearings, pp. 10, 50-55. 19, 23, 25, 30, 39-41; House,

15House, ~adium Hearings, pp. 77, 264; Senate, Radium Hearings, pp. 64-66, 72-73. The miners of the carnotite region met somewhat tardily on January 30 at Norwood, Colorado, and drafted a resolution decrying federal meddling. Directing the meeting was John T. Mullen, Supervisor of Mining for Standard Chemical Company. They resolutions adopted at the meeting were drafted by E. L. Livingston, accountant for Standard. 16House, Radium Hearings, pp. 55, 77-78, 122-126. 17House, Radium Hearings, pp. 175-192; Grand Valley Times, January 23, 1914, p. 1; San Juan County, Fee and Entry Records, "Book 0," pp. 358-402. 18House, Report 214, pp. 1-2; Congressional 63d Cong., 2d Sess., February 7, 1914, p. 3031. Record, LI, Part 4,

19House, Radium Hearings, p. 9; New York Times Index, January-March, 1914, p. 85; Washington Post, February 10, 1914, as quoted in Senate Radium hearings, p. 123. 20Senate, Radium Hearings, pp. 12, 17-43, 81-96, 117, 129; House, Radium Hearings, p. 57. 21Parsons, "Our Radium Resources," p. 323. 22Senate, ~10, 134-172. Radium Hearings, pp. 4, 7-8, 20, 24-30, 43-55, 63-79,

23Senate, Radium Hearings, pp. 81-95, 97, 129, 133, 139-140. 24Congressional Record, LI. Part 5, 63d, Cong., 2d sess., March 16, 1914, p. 4893; Senate Reports, 63d Congo 2d sess., Vol. I, Report 348, pp. 1-4; Congressional Record, LI, Part 5, 63d Cong., 2d sess., pp. 4893-4894. 25Congressional Record, LI, Part 6, 63d Cong., 2d sess., April 8, 1914, p. 6386; Part 8, 63d Cong., 2d sess., May 1, 1914, p. 7557. 26Robert Andrews Millikan, "The Significance of Radium," Bulletin of the California Institude of Technology, XXIX (June, 1921), 1-21; Mohammed Rauf, "Isotope New Hope in Cancer," Los Angeles Herald Examiner, August 24, 1969, Sec B, p. 1; Millikan, pp. 1-21; Roy Gibbons, "Wanted; old Time Radiation Victims," Science Digest, XLVI (September, 1959), 53-57; Mineral Resources, 1926, pp. 265-268; Cyril G. Hopkins and Ward H. Sach, "Radium Fertilizer in Field Tests," Science, XLI (May 14, 1915), pp. 732-735; R. R. Ramsay, "Radium Fertilizer," Science, XLII (August 13, 1915), p. 219; Mineral Resources, 1916, p. 806. 27"Atomic Research Broadens," Business Week (March 22, 1947), p.

28Allen E. Jones, "Address before the Ninth Annual Symposium Uranium Section," Moab, Utah, May 22, 1964, p. 2 author's possession); "AEC Announces New Uranium Procurement and Extension of Initial Production Bonus," AEC Press Release May 24, 1956.

Minerals (copy in Program No. 150,

29Elton A. Youngberg, "The Present Uranium Situation," paper read before the Wyoming Mining Association, Riverton, Wyoming, May 13, 1967, p. 3; Glenn T. Seaborg, "The Nuclear Industry-1968 and Beyond," Financial Forum on Nuclear Energy, New York, October 30, 1968, pp. 4-5. 30Harold B. Meyers, "Another Big Whirl for Uranium," Fortune, April 1968, pp. 128-31. One miner, who sold his claims to a large company for $100,000 and 250,000 shares of stock in mid-1968 saw the stock shoot up almost 1,000 percent within a few months, increasing his paper assets over two million dollars. Interview with Devar Shumway, June 28, 1969. 31 Mitchell Rogovin and George T. Frampton, Jr., Three Mile Island: A Report to the Commissioners and to the Public (Wash. D.C.: U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, 1979) p. 153 and passim.

32U.S.A. Today, Aug. 1987, Vol. 116, p. 1.


Extent of Mining in Utah Utah's rich endowment of mineral deposits is inextricably entwined with the State's economy. Mining in Utah began in 1849 with the discovery of iron ore near Cedar City, Utah. Coal was found near Coalville and Cedar City in 1850, and gold and silver were discovered near Bingham in 1863. The coming of the railroad in 1869 secured Utah's position as one of the nation's principal metal producing states. Utah's base and precious metal deposits include iron, copper, lead, zinc, gold, and silver. Major ore deposits are located in the Oquirrh Mountains, Tintic Mountains, San Francisco Mountains, central Wasatch Mountains, and Cedar Valley. Metals such as antimony, beryllium, mercury and vanadium are mined primarily in west-central and central Utah. Uranium has been mined in southeastern and southern Utah. Coal is mined in central, east-central, and southern Utah. Oil shale and tar sands are found in the Uintah Basin and eastern Utah. Nonmetals including phosphate, potash and fluorspar are found primarily in the southern Uintah Mountains and east-central Utah. Abundant deposits of sand and gravel are present along the shore edge of ancient Lake Bonneville and dimension stone and limestone are available in most parts of the State. There have been approximately 2,000 significant-sized mines in the State over the past 130 years. The total estimated value of mineral commodity production in Utah for 1983 is almost one billion dollars. The leading commodities are copper, coal, gold and silver. Most of the copper, and significant amounts of gold and silver, were produced by Kennecott Corporation from the Bingham Mine. As an important part of Utah's economy, mining provides jobs, raw materials for manufacturing, and coal and uranium for power generation. Of the 91 minerals and materials used in our every day lives, 65 are mined in the State. In 1980, Utah was ranked ninth in the nation by the Bureau of Mines in overall production of minerals, placing it above its neighboring states of Idaho, Wyoming and Nevada.

Overview of Mining and Mineral Processing Methods In order to discuss the sUbject of reclamation, it is helpful to briefly review what processes take place in and on the ground when mining occurs. Conventional underground mining includes: Self-supported openings: open-stapes, room-and-pillar, sublevel stoping, shrinkage stoping, stull stoping. These are usually completed in strong, competent rock and leave permanent openings of adits or shafts. Supported openings: cut-and-fill stoping, long-wall mining, short-wall mining, top slicing, square-set and fill stoping. These methods use backfill (broken rock, tailings), broken and caved roof materials, or artificial supports such as timbers. These types of openings usually collapse over time at the entrances of the adits or portals and shaft collars. The surface easily subsides into the workings, leaving seemingly unexpected openings in otherwiselOndisturbed surface land. Caving methods of sublevel caving and block and panel caving. These methods are adapted to weak, massive are bodies and require that large volumes of rock slowly cave when are is withdrawn from below. Subsidence is usually an issue in this type of mining. Surface mining methods include: Open pit mining creates single and multiple bench pits, strip mines, and glory-holes. Surface mines are usually not very deep. Placer mining is located in unconsolidated or semiconsolidated sands and gravels in active or ancient stream beds. Disturbance is usually to a river bank or stream bed. Brine recovery uses evaporation ponds in and near the Great Salt Lake. The remaining dry solid portions are then mined out of the ponds.

Hot-water solutioning which dissolves bedded salt and potash; high velocity jetting which utilizes high pressure water jets to mine uranium; In situ leaching which uses acid or other leaching solutions such as ammonium or sodium carbonate in uranium and copper mining; and Dump and heap leaching which uses chemicals to mine copper, uranium, and precious metals from low-grade are. These methods can leave water ponds or low-grade are piles at a mine site.

Processing of mined materials which can occur right on the mine site or many miles away but which is still part of the mining process, includes: Concentrating, smelting, crushing, grinding, washing, sizing, cleaning, magnetic separation, and refining produce wastes that may be slag or simply a ground-rock slurry fed into tailings ponds or refuse piles. In addition to the constituents originally in the mined material, mine processing wastes may contain sulfuric acid, alkaline solutions (e.g., lime or sodium carbonate), cyanide (e.g., gold and silver operations), organics (e.g., from retorting wastes), oil and grease, trace metals, pyrites, and salts (e.g., coal cleaning). The type of waste left from mineral processing is highly dependent upon the minerals and the extracting process. Processing facilities and equipment can be massive and intricate structures which at the end of the mine life must be dealt with. Flotation, solar concentration of brines, retorting, and in situ retorting processing can leave ponds, uplifted ground, or other physical features at a mine site. All mines generally have at least one or two of the following support and ancillary facilities such as mine offices, bathhouses, powder houses, maintenance sheds, tipples, weigh stations, electric substations, roads, etc.

Often in the past when all of the minerals were mined out of an area, or mining became unprofitable, a mine was simply abandoned leaving the area in the same conditions as when it was active. Everything was left in place and shafts and tunnels were left open. Mines such as these did not immediately cause a problem. Most local people knew where the mines were and knew enough about mining to be wary of such areas. As time has passed, however, newcomers and new generations of people unfamiliar with mining have come into contact with the abandoned mines. At the abandoned sites, old buildings and equipment have become dilapidated and unsafe. Coal waste piles and underground workings have caught fire. Poisonous air collects underground and moves to the open entrances with changes in barometric pressure. Open holes in the ground have grown larger or become obscured by vegetation. Collapsing mine tunnels have caused open fractures and craters at the earth's surface (subsidence). Unchecked runoff has developed drainage ways over refuse or ore piles. Steeply placed waste dumps have created dangerous embankments or landslides. Interrupted groundwater, some of drinking water quality and some poisonous, has been left to drain from open mine portals. Abandonment has also left barren and devalued land in the midst of prime grazing, wildlife, farming and recreation areas. Nonetheless, these abandoned mine sites are an attraction to curiosity seekers and artifact collectors, but can provide a dangerous surprise to visitors who know nothing of mining.

Today, only a very few of the smaller mines are abandoned without any reclamation or rehabilitation of the site. State laws passed in 1975 and 1979 now require Utah mine operators to perform reclamation in an area when the mine life is finished.

Reclamation, from the verb reclaim has Latin roots. More recently it comes from the Middle English word, reclamen, which means to call back. In the mining business reclamation has two meanings. It previously meant only the recovery of coal or ore from a mine that had been abandoned. Reclamation as it will be discussed here means the rehabilitation or restoration of mined lands into another productive use. The widespread concept of reclamation is relatively new in the last 15 to 20 years. In the early part of this century, farmers and conservationists began voicing strong concerns about the amount of land that was being left not only useless but which was causing problems downstream from the mining. While some states have had reclamation laws on the books for a number of years, they was often ineffective or inconsistent. As early as 1967, the United States Congress considered legislation that would comprehensively govern the devastating effects of certain coal mining practices. Ten years later, Public Law 95-87, the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act (SMCRA) of 1977 became a reality. This law provided for the mining of coal in an environmentally sound fashion. It set standards which all surface and underground coal operators must comply with by requiring detailed mining and reclamation plans. It also requires adequate bonds for reclamation should the operator fail to reclaim at the end of the mine life. This same Act also established a reclamation fund to finance restoration of land and waters that had been mined and abandoned prior to the enactment date of SMCRA. The Abandoned Mined Land Reclamation Program was established to perform the work on abandoned mines. The monies for this program come from a fee which every coal mine operator pays on each ton of coal produced. These fees are placed in a trust fund by a federal agency, the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation & Enforcement. Fifty percent of the trust fund monies paid by coal producers in each state are returned to the State for reclaiming abandoned mines. In Utah, this program is the responsibility of the Division of Oil, Gas and Mining, a division of the Utah Department of Natural Resources. The first task of Utah's Abandoned Mine Reclamation Program is to identify those abandoned mines which pose a threat to the public's safety or the environment. The Utah AMR Program has found, from field inventory, that it has a minimum of 4,500 hazardous mineral shaft and adits, many of the latter with winzes (a shaft inside a mine). From records of a mineral survey conducted over the last 10 years by Utah's Geological Survey in the 136 organized mining districts, that figure is probably double - 9,000. This number includes abandoned coal and uranium mines also. It was estimated in 1977 by the Soil Conservation Service that there are 31,555 acres of mined land to be reclaimed in Utah.

As the mines are identified, the degree of hazard or danger is assessed. These sites are ranked according to a set plan in the AMR Program. A given number of mines are reclaimed each year, depending on available funds. The ranking system ensures that the most severe problems are taken care of first. The AMR Program is not the only entity performing reclamation in Utah. To date, five once-operating coal mines have been closed and reclaimed either by the past operator or the landowner. The largest single reclamation project in the state was completed this past year by a mineral mine operator near Tooele. That project included the reclamation of 532 acres disturbed by mining and an additional 170 acres of borrow areas. Reclamation is ongoing at many active mine sites also. This is required of every coal mine in the state and is usually termed interim reclamation, since the work will have to be redone at the end of mine life in order to reclaim the entire site. Large mineral operators usually reclaim where they can as they operate even though this may not be required of them. Even some smaller operators set up revegetation test plots to get an idea of the ease or difficulty that they will meet with in reclaiming the entire site.

Taking a closer look at what elements are involved in reclamation, the most important aspect is planning. Work at a site usually involves the following considerations: portal, adit and shaft closures; demolition and burial or removal of facilities, equipment and debris; recontouring of waste piles, ponds, and the entire site to blend into the surrounding area; soiling the site with a growth medium; revegetation by seeding and planting; and handling special problems of surface and underground fires, subsidence, and drainage restoration and control. Planning takes into account the process which is now required when mine operators seek a permit to mine in the state. At the start of a mine, operators asked among other things, to decide how much topsoil they will scrape up and store, where they will store it, whether the amount is adequate for final reclamation and how they will protect it. They must also provide a comprehensive plan of how the site will be returned to another use and what that use is projected to be. Planners for abandoned mines must be as thorough in the development of a reclamation project but without the benefit of any previous planning for the site. For instance, topsoil was not saved and stored so some must be found nearby. Portal, adit and shaft closures are subject to some fairly standard methods and some experimental technology. Horizontal openings, adits and portals generally receive solid double block or rock walls which are cemented into place 15 to 20 feet inside the entrance. These seals help prevent the escape of any poisonous gas. The soil is followed up with 15 to 20 feet of backfill to the entrance and is often covered over in the recontouring of a site.

Where it is feasible, shafts are backfilled with waste rock from the site. This is because it eliminates the hole in the ground, it can be watched over time, and it stabilizes the collar of the shaft and prevents it from enlarging out. It is considered to be the most desired, permanent, cost effective method over time. However, it not always possible to backfill since there may be no backfill available or the area is not ground equipment accessible. Ground disturbing equipment may not be allowed in parts of national forests, national parks, or other environmentally sensitive areas. Historical considerations may dictate that the complete eradication of the hole in the ground is unacceptable and unmitigable. In instances where the patented claim owner, the U.S. Geological Survey, the state geologist or water supply users insist on maintaining access into a mine, other alternatives are considered. Other technology used is cement cones, grates, slabs, fencing and grids. Such closures are not always perfect or permanent, since it may be difficult to monitor the shaft collar and its outward expansion as it sloughs inward. In Utah, there is a particular problem in some cross country ski and snowmobiling areas where backfilling is not an option, but where avalanches continually wreck havoc on grid closures. Subsidence has been dealt with in many ways since the conditions all vary. Mining may have been deep or shallow. It may have been extensive in multiple seams of mineral or in a single deposit or seam. In the Abandoned Mine Program, subsidence in residential, farming, commercial, and remote grazing areas has been addressed. Most of the work has been successful in stabilizing the ground by pumping a grout or other filler material into the void. If the subsidence is near the surface, excavation of the old workings or simple backfill has sufficed. In unusual situations where regulations require zero subsidence the operator backfills, contemporaneous with mining, using waste rock. There are few competent buildings and structures left at abandoned mine sites. Most have been robbed long ago of their integrity along with any salvageable materials. Iron is taken for scrap, tanks appropriated by local farmers or ranchers, handcut sandstone masonry pillaged, and wood and galvanized sheeting is hauled off. Although it is allowable for the owners of abandoned mine property to do as they wish with historical structures (those over 50 years old and which are contributory to an understanding of past mining), the AMR program must render detailed drawings, maps and histories prior to any physical work to disturb the same structure. In most cases, the structures and equipment are demolished and buried in a pit created on the mine site. Where the landowner strongly desires and/or where it can be effected, only the unstable roof or other unstable portion of the building is removed and the structure or equipment is left as a "moldering ruin". Mine cars have been salvaged from abandoned sites and are now part of roadsite historical stops.

Recontouring requires reshaping the site and involves cut and fill balancing of earth quantities. The challenge here is to move material with economy in mind. The more and the further you move a cubic yard of fill, the more you spend on a project. A typical mine in Utah's mountainous terrain consists of a notch cut into the side of a hill, creating a working pad area which is partly fill dirt. In planning this part of reclamation, it is important to decide if the entire pad or highwall needs to be eliminated. All sizes of waste piles and ponds must be regraded. Most important, drainage must be restored through a site, preferably not right over the fill dirt area. In more recent mines, an active drainage is culverted under a mine site pad. The culvert must be removed and the riparian or streambank habitat restored. The very best soil material on a site is saved for the topdressing after a site is contoured. Depending on site conditions, only 6 inches may be available, but several feet of growth material is preferred. Recent research is showing that stockpiling topsoil for more than a year so grossly disrupts the structure and life of microorganisms living in the soil that it becomes very poor growth medium. Abandoned sites with no stockpiled topsoil may not be at such a disadvantage after all. Soil characteristics that are evaluated for growth potential are texture, structure, color, organic matter, pH, phosphorous, potassium, and nitrogen. The properties of permeability, water holding capacity, inherent fertility, and erodibility are determined from such information. Soil amendments are made where necessary. Revegetation, the final step, had its technological beginnings in the west in restoring game and range lands. A National Academy of Sciences Study took the first hard look at the rehabilitation potential of western coal lands in 1974. Their concern was for the vast acreages of surface coal mining, primarily in Colorado, Montana and Wyoming which have low annual precipitation, poor soil development, high erosion potential, and slow ecological processes of vegetative succession. The findings and recommendations of the committee were encouraging in that technology, carefully applied, should yield stable and productive sites. Restoration, replacing the exact condition prior to mining, they deemed was not possible, but reclamation or rehabilitation was possible. This finding has been borne out each year as hundreds of acres are reclaimed concurrently in the process of strip mining in the west. Preparation of the seedbed on a resoiled site includes furrowing, contour ploughing, terracing, pitting, and the construction of small basins, or otherwise roughing the surface of the soil. The creation of such microenvironments for little seedlings is more conducive to growth than is a "baby bottom smooth" soil surface. A seed mix is chosen which is compatible with the chosen land use and precipitation level and which contains some immediate soil stabilizers or nurse type crops. Often, short-lived invader "weeds" (a weed being any plant growing where it is not wanted) take over a site and stabilize it while more desirable plants become established. Since seeds are the least costly component in the reclamation process, skimping on amount and variety is not recommended. Seeding is generally timed to take advantage of spring snow melt moisture and is done late in the fall.

Overplanting with tree and shrub seedlings is a more expensive investment but worthwhile if it is important to speed up the revegetation process at a site. Monitoring of the reclaimed site is recommended to fine tune the work and correct any problems arising from severe storms and runoff. Erosion, slope failure, overgrazing, and failed seed germination are some difficulties which can be encountered. Fencing sites from grazers is common for the initial years of growth. Ideally, a moratorium on grazing would last 10 to 15 years in the west.

Since the beginning of the Abandoned Mine Program, $1.1 billion has been spent nationwide on reclamation in 36 states. This has resulted in 66,000 acres of land returned to productive use, 5,624 mine sites reclaimed, 7,676 mine openings sealed, 451 slides addressed, 239 fires abated, and 948 subsidence cases addressed. The regulatory agencies generally place a price on reclamation of a site anywhere from $5,000 to $30,000 an acre. The costs vary depending on the features at a site. A number of shafts or portals, fires, steep slopes, large waste piles, massive structures, etc., all will drive the price per acre upward. Costs will also increase for the remoteness of a site. Mobilizing equipment into an area off the beaten path or having to repair a road to make it equipment accessible will cause the site costs to steepen. The average that has been spent nationwide through the Abandoned Mine Reclamation Program is $19,910. In Utah, the average is $26,600 per acre. The average cost is higher in Utah because of the emphasis on shaft closures versus the actual land reclamation. In Utah, as in other states, the mine reclamation laws are having an impact. Surface mines are being reclaimed contemporaneous with mining, mines at the end of the mine life are being reclaimed, and bonds have been forfeited on some mines where the operator chooses to walk away from the site. In the last case, the state's mine regulatory agency usually performs reclamation by contracting for the work. Land which was once disturbed by mining and mining processes is now being returned to its original use or another use. These are many and varied and include agricultural uses such as: pasture or range land, wildlife grazing, and cropland. Recreation on reclaimed lands is a popular postmining land use. Ballfields, parks with miniature golf, horseshoe pits and picnic areas, boat docks on lakes created by mining, summer camps, and wildlife refuge areas have all been developed on past mining sites. Residential and commercial land, undermined and affected by subsidence of the mine workings, has been stabilized and the use remains the same. Surface landowners who did not own or control the mineral rights, and state and federal land management agencies are happy to both profit from the mining and to have the land returned to another productive use once mining is complete.

Remining Some inactive mine sites may have reason to not be reclaimed. These sites may not be conducive to full reclamation for one or several reasons. They may not have not been exhausted of their full mineral or commodity value, valuable ore dumps may remain from a past mine operation which are of interest to potential operators, and there may be no bond, reclamation requirement, or funds to cover reclamation. Luckily, many sites disturbed during past mining booms are receiving attention today. For instance, several large inactive mines in Utah and many in Nevada are being remined as profitable ventures or have plans for the same. These sites, once they are mined again, fall under the jurisdiction of current permitting and reclamation laws. Any part of the site which is redisturbed during this process must then become part of a final reclamation plan. Mining companies are finding that new recovery methods make once abandoned operations economical enough to rework waste piles as ore piles and still reclaim the site at the end of the mine life. Reclamation programs in some states, including Utah, have attempted to include remining as part of the overall cleanup and rehabilitation of a site. Plans for such are quite involved and difficult but are worthwhile when the sale of the commodity being remined can be used to offset the total cost of the reclamation project. Since state and federal agencies are not and should not be in the mining business, special remining/reclamation arrangements are resorted to only when it is imperative to clean up a site for safety or strong environmental reasons and there are no mining companies which are immediately interested in remining the site. Sunrnary "Man has always altered his environment. nl Few of these alterations have a specific timeline of use like mining does. Within a lifetime, minerals can be extracted from an area and the area returned to another use. In contrast, housing projects, highways, parks, cultivation, and shopping malls are all multi-generation propositions. Their disturbance to the land is permanent viewed from our lifetime alone. ThUS, the development of laws and technology concerning mine reclamation is a success story which has developed in our lifetime and which should be viewed as a success story by developers and environmentalists alike. We have arrived at a place that our country was called to in 1907 by President Theodore Roosevelt when he said to Congress "To waste, to destroy our natural resources, to skin and exhaust the land instead of using it so as to increase its usefulness, will result in undermining in the days of our children the very prosperity which we ought by right to hand down to them amplified and developed."


Thadis W. Box, Dean of the College of Natural Resources, Utah State University, Logan Utah.

Box, T.W. et ale 1974. Rehabilitation Potential of Western Coal Lands. National Academy of Sciences. Cambridge, Mass. Ballinger Publishing Co. Forest Service. 1983. Anatomy of a Mine from Prospect to Production. Intermountain Forest and Range Experiment Station. Ogden, Utah: General Technical Report INT-35. Soil Conservation Service. 1979. The Status of Land Disturbed by Surface Mining in the United States. U.S. Department of Agriculture. SC5-TP-158. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Govt. Printing Office: 1979-631-344/2860. St. AUbin, K. and Massie, S. 1987. 1977/1987 The Abandoned Mine Reclamation Program. Springfield, Illinois: Association of Abandoned Mine Land Programs. Wright, M.A. 1986. Abandoned Mine Reclamation Program Project Summary. Salt Lake City, Utah. Unpublished data. Wright, M.A., Croft, M.G., Smith, R.V., Vandell, T.D. 1986. Mining and Mine Facilities in Ground Water Protection Strategy for the State of Utah. Utah Department of Health Publication.

Mary Ann Wright is the Administrator of the Abandoned Mine Reclamation Program for the State of Utah. She received a Masters Degree in Zoology with an emphasis in Ecology from Indiana University in 1978. She has worked in the area of mine reclamation for the past nine years in the Department of Natural Resources. Prior to that, and while in graduate school, her work involved environmental education and policy and land use issues. ~W 9/87