The Rock Hut - Leadville, CO
Posted by: 94RedRover
N 39° 14.956 W 106° 17.502
13S E 388541 N 4345233
Quick Description: The Rock Hut, located at 706 Harrison Avenue in historic Leadville, Colorado, is a great place to find minerals, fossils and information about rocks and mining.
Location: Colorado, United States
Date Posted: 12/6/2009 7:13:16 AM
Waymark Code: WM7V8X
In 1860, Abe Lee and the Slater Party discovered $8 million in gold in California Gulch on the outskirts of what is now Leadville, Colorado. The "Gold Rush" had begun. Thousands flocked to "Oro City", as the settlement was called, to stake their claim of the golden fortunes. By the mid 1860s, however, was short lived, as the vast numbers of prospectors quickly depleated the gold reserves.
Alvinus Wood and William Stevens, gold miners in Oro City, discovered that "all that black stuff" in the sand that seperated from their gold search was actually silver bearing lead ore and recognized it's worth in 1874. Old gold claims were quickly bought up and the "Silver Boom" had begun. Millionaires were made almost overnight, such as: Horace Tabor, David May, J.J. Brown and his wife Margaret (Molly), the Guggenheims and the Boettcher family.
"Cloud City" as it became known, incorporated and changed it's name to Leadville in 1878. By 1880, some 30,000 residents had swarmed to the rich, second largest city in Colorado.
The repeal of the Sherman Silver Purchase Act in 1893 spelled ruin for Horace Tabor and many others who profited from the mining riches of the area. The "Silver Boom" was over, and miners in the area now had to mine for other, less productive minerals, such as lead, zinc and molybdenum (named for Molly Brown).
Now, Leadville is a National Historic District, consisting of over 50 buildings froms the 1870s, including the building that now houses Jim and Irene Witmer's "The Rock Hut." Opened in 1974, The Rock Hut displays over 6,000 specimens of rocks and minerals from all over the world but has an emphasis on Colorado minerals.
The shop itself reflects so much of the history of mining in this area. Not only can you get thumbnails of thousands of rocks and minerals, you will find fossils, area information, prospecting and detecting supplies and Native American jewelry.
We spend well over 15 minutes just browsing through the displays. Their inventory is impressive. If you're thinking about trying your hand at some prospecting in the area, a stop at the Rock Hut will get you all the supplies and information you'll need.
Rock Yard: no
Accept Credit Cards: yes
Theme: Colorado Minerals
706 Harrison Ave
Leadville, CO USA
Seasonal: From: 1/1/2009 To: 1/1/2011
Website: [Web Link]
Rock Hounding: no
What did you buy, if anything? and a photo of the location would be appreciated.