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Travel with Bennett-Watt and learn about Butte, Montana, know as the world's richest hill.
Tags:Copper Mining in Butte Montana,Butte architecture,Butte Montana,Butte Tourist Attractions,Copper Mining Butte,Copper Mining Maine,History of Butte,What to Do in Butte,bennett watt
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Copper Mining in Butte Montana
Host: The richest hill on Earth is Butte Montana’s claimed the thing for more than a century. Copper mining has been king here. Billions of tons of imperious metals were extracted from the hill making Butte in the early 1900s the wealthiest community in the west.
Gold Mine Head Frames stand in Butte’s underground mines that eventually were phased out for more economic open pit mining which is what an belabors on the community. Uptown view is the second largest historic district in the United States.
Marko Lucich: Butte is richest here on Earth. It was home to about 15,000 miners in the early 1900s. One time there’s about 10,000 miles on the gold mine. And of course about 1955 is when we started at open pit mining here so we do not have any underground mining anymore but we have open pit and it can place about 350 people right now. Of course copper would be the minerals that are being mined on a record low as far as crisis is concern so these are very good in Montana as far as mining is concern.
Its architecture is probably one of—the nice architectures were in Mississippi. A lot of the architects from New York they just kind of come over and— these are buildings here and even up Tanari which is right behind me. They're still sounding. There are beautiful buildings so I think architecture is one reason.
Viewed also with the mining industry, there’s a union movement, labor movements probably is established here as far as a lot of unions are concerned. So, a lot of the organized labor actually has problems right here in view which I think is very necessary. That’s not the history you can find right here.
Host: On the campus of Montana Tech, the World Museum of Mining.
Richard Sturtridge: Well, features just a collection of more than 60 buildings that represent at 1880’s mining town. Some of the buildings are original and they all have exhibits inside and we’re also located on the side of the Orphan Girl Mine which is silver, Lenin, and zinc mine. It was an operation for 81 years from 1875 until 1956 running through a depth of about three thousand feet.
You know, it reminded me of more than 70 artifacts that were used in the Butte mining industry. So, we have quite a bit to see. And essentially, the museum is divided into those two sections. For more than 75 years, this was the leading copper producing region on earth from the early 1880’s until the mid 1950’s.
Now one time there were a hundred head frames and 232 operating lines on the Butte Hill. We are one time at a population of 100,000 people. And at the turn of the century, it was the largest city in the American Northwest.
Host: Looking at over downtown Butte, our lady of the Rockies at 90 foot monument to American ingenuity.
LeRoy Lee: It is 51 tons. Both of our hand is 50 feet wide. So, it’s 90 feet tall and 50 feet wide. How it got started was a man named Bobby Bill whose wife and had cancer and he made the promise to the Lord and his wife lived that he would push that to some place and it grew.
And how I hot involve, I was a welder for robbers and they got a sculpture that made a nine foot model and he took me up. Can you build a 90 foot statue from there? I looked at it and I never sculptured nothing before and I feel— could you build a 90 foot statue and I said no. and I said, I never sculptured that before.
We went to church and I sit in and I'm looking at the – and baby Jesus in it so I looked up and I said, “Do you want me to build? You got to show me how.” And I don’t even know why I said that yo0u know. I went home and I took a shower, and went to bed and I tossed and turned and all of a sudden it was like I was watching a movie; how to draw the lines in the floor, how to bend the iron. I couldn’t believe it.
I went to work and it just took shape and everybody was so excited. They just couldn’t believe it and that’s what happened. I never sculptured anything in my life. This is the first thing I've ever done.
It took five years. But then see, I was a welder there so I have to work on an equipment of that. And when there was a slow time that I go back on the statue. I had this Hidney Ron Hewes and he come down and want to help so I welled in the pieces of iron and put them and tack them in and he’d come along behind wire or aluminum.
When we we’re doing filling the statue, Bubble Bill, Mike Clarice. Then, we poured the base. We have about 90 guys that come up and iron workers and put all that all on the church.
David posts the statue up on. He was kind of after Mazula that the day we put the head on that, there was a real Mazula on the mine. We said that the day we've put it up that they were turned around. I mean it’s been growing ever since.