­Carpenter And the Cameo Mines.

Back in 1884, the Great Book Cliff mines were discovered by the late George Smith. In order to supply a growing Colorado, George Smith set his intentions on a mine that would satisfy the people’s needs. Eventually George smith unexpectedly discovered a huge vein of coal in a mine fifteen miles away from the Book Cliff Mountains. The mine granted an amazing amount of resources but without the technology to transport the goods the mine was useless. So this led George Carpenter to create a device known as a minicar, or funicular.  With this simple advancement and the men at his disposal, they could transport the materials across the Grand Valley a lot easier. Eventually a man named Thomas Carpenter, purchased a mine from George Smith. This mine was dubbed Carpenter after Thomas’s last name. The mine then soon became incredibly popular thanks to Thomas’s innovations with the rail road system, providing efficient and fast transportation. As the years went by, the introduction of many useful additions and services were provided. The mine became a well-known tourist spot with people flocking just to see the heart of the mine.  Later on the addition of churches and schools led to a nice community among the mines. As business boomed the resources available slowly depleted, leading to the slow downfall of the mines. Even T. Carpenter at the time grew bored at the now dry mines and decided to leave his mine in the hands of Wyman. Carpenter left to Alaska in the midst of the gold rush. Nearby as the popularity of Carpenter grew, another mine named Cameo came to existence. The town was founded in 1899 at about the same time of the Carpenter mines. Cameo had some great additions that Carpenter wouldn’t have until later on in its life time. At the get go, the same mines had a machine shop as well as schools, churches and about 30 homes available. After the destruction of the Carpenter mines Cameo slowly came to a close. Resources were dwindling and eventually the resources weren’t worth as much. As other booms came to fruition that to let people away and eventually the Carpenter and Cameo mines became ghost towns and a part of our rich history. Even now we can see a hundred years of mining history, in the lonely but fascinating ghost towns, of Colorado.

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