Welcome to Western Mining History

Featured Mining Town: Randsburg, California

Featured Mining Town: Randsburg, California

Gold was discovered at Randsburg, California in 1895 when the nation was in the midst of a depression. The desert prospectors that converged on Randsburg comprised what was known as a "poor man's camp". Some of them had to abandon their claims out of hunger while others ground the gold out of their ore by hand to come up with the $1.60 fee to file their claim.   Continue Reading

Best Historical Photos: Colorized Mining Scenes

These historic photos have been enhanced by the world’s most advanced artificial intelligence based photo optimization software. High-resolution versions of these images are available to download to all WMH premium members. These high resolution digital images can be used at services like Shutterfly to create prints or other promotional materials. The original photo is included  Continue Reading

Miners Pose For These Incredible Colorized Photos

Lunch in the Chance Mine 1909

These historic photos have been enhanced by the world’s most advanced artificial intelligence based photo optimization software. High-resolution versions of these images are available to download to all WMH premium members. These high resolution digital images can be used at services like Shutterfly to create prints or other promotional materials. The original photo is included  Continue Reading

Featured Mining Town: Helena, Montana

Featured Mining Town: Helena, Montana

Helena, Montana was the site of one of Montana's earliest gold rushes. Helena was the political and financial center of Montana by the 1880s and it was said that it had more millionaires per capita than any city in the world.  Continue Reading

Featured Mining Town: Virginia City, Montana

Featured Mining Town: Virginia City, Montana

Virginia City, Montana is one of the West's richest and most notorious historic gold camps. In the five years after the first gold discovery an estimated $30-$40 million in gold was recovered here. Also abundant were the murders by road agents, with around 100 travelers killed between 1863 and 1864.  Continue Reading

Featured Mining Town: Victor, Colorado

Featured Mining Town: Victor, Colorado

Victor, Colorado was known as the Cripple Creek district's "City of Mines". One third of all the gold mined in the district came from the mines at Victor.  Continue Reading