Thursday, September 15, 2011

Traveling West 2011 9-13

On the Road Again Tuesday Sept. 13 to Lead, S. D.

We stopped at the Homestake Mine Visitor Center. Gold was
discovered in 1876 and mined here on and off until 2003. Mining is 1. Drilling, 2. Blasting, 3. Hauling and 4. Milling.

Gold is immune to air, water and oxygen. It does not rust, tarnish or corrode. It is used in cameras, FAX machines, TVs, CDs, phones, cars, spacecrafts and so much more. It is interesting to learn fireman may wear visors that are gold faced.

Simulated gold nuggets.

Replica of gold weighing 178 oz. in Australia.

Placer gold is what was found in this area in the streams. It is flakes of gold that are freed by erosion.

We had an underground tour at the Black Hills Mining Museum. The guide was phenomenal. So informative. In the early years the miners drilled with steel rods and a sledgehammer.

Over the years drills were improved.

Early steel rods on the top were solid. Lower ones have a hole in the center where water went through. Very helpful to diminish dust caused by the drilling.

Red wagon...very vital. When women started working in the mines they put a curtain around the red wagon.

Replica of the stamp machine, used to crush rocks. Gold being heavier falls in the grooves.

But not all gold was retrieved until cyanidation was invented. Here are cyanide briquettes.

Goggles worn by the miners in 1930.

A mucker was to load 16 one ton carts of broken ore a day. Remember Tennessee Ernie Ford's song.

We camped at Steel Wheel Campground south of Lead, S. D.

Location:Lead, S. D.

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