Overview of the Animas Forks townsite in 2004.

National and State Register

Historic Mining Resources of San Juan County

Historic Mining Resources of San Juan County, Colorado Form contextualizes the prominent and long-lived local mining industry between 1860 and 1954 in the eight principal mining districts historically active in the county: Las Animas, Eureka, Mineral Point, Poughkeepsie, Cement Creek, Mineral Creek, Ice Lake, and Bear Creek.

Associated Historic Contexts developed in the document include:

  • the Gold Rush, 1860-1
  • Return to the San Juans, 1870-4
  • Settlement and Establishment of Industry, 1875-81
  • the Early 1880s Boom, 1882-5
  • the Value of Silver Restored, 1890-3
  • the Silver Crash, 1894-7
  • the Great Mining Revival, 1898-1910
  • World War I Revival, 1915-21
  • Great Depression Era Revival, 1933-9
  • and Post-World War II Recovery, 1946-54

A sub-section further addresses the complex processes of Mining and Milling Methods, Technology, and Equipment. Detailed technical information explores placer mining, hardrock mining, evolution of the mine surface plant, shaft form and hoisting vehicles, steam boilers, headframe types, and additional surface components, such as ore storage and aerial tramways. The technology of ore benefication is addressed through consideration of smelters, concentration mills, amalgamation stamp mills, and arrastras. Property Types include: hardrock prospects; hardrock mines; aerial tramways; ore-concentration facilities; smelters; settlement and residences; and rural historic mining landscapes.