Who We Are


The Mining History Association (MHA) is an organization of individuals interested in the history of mining and metallurgy. Members include independent scholars, laypersons, college and university professors, historians, miners, geologists, retired mining industry personnel, and many others.



What We Do


The MHA holds an annual meeting, publishes a scholarly journal and a quarterly newsletter, and provides a forum for discussion of the history of mining. 


Why is Mining History Important?

History buffs from academics to amateurs are frequently asked what they like about mining history. CLICK HERE to see how MHA members are answering these questions.

We invite you to join us today in the

discovery of our mining past!


Mining History Association Annual Conference
June 6-10, 2018
Deadwood, South Dakota

CLICK HERE for the latest information.


29th Annual Conference
Mining History Association
7-10 June 2018
Deadwood, South Dakota

The Program Committee of the Mining History Association invites proposals for individual presentations or complete sessions (includes chair) on any topic or aspect of mining history. Sessions normally include three papers of twenty minutes each. There are no temporal or geographic limits. Presentations that address mining history in the Black Hills and the Northern Rockies are particularly welcome.

Proposals should include title of presentation, an abstract (not to exceed one page) for each presentation, plus biographical information about each presenter, including mailing/email address. Please send the written proposals via email attachment to David Wolff by January 1, 2018. Submission by email is required.

The Program Committee for the MHA’s 2018 Deadwood conference consists of:
Brian Leech (Chair), Robert L. Spude, Bob Otto, and David Wolff.

David Wolff, MHA—Deadwood

CLICK HERE For Photos From
The 2017 Fairbanks Conference

Mining History Search


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New on the Web

Photos from Fairbanks
New photo galleries are on-line from 2017 Annual Conference in Fairbanks. Check the Fairbanks web page to see what’s new.

Don’t miss the special new pages on MHA member visits to the Kennecott Mine and Mill, the Independence Mine State Park, and Fairbanks Surprises.
There is still time to share your favorite photos by sending them via email to Mike Kaas, the MHA Web Coordinator.

Mineral Industry in Early America

During the Bicentennial of the USA, the US Bureau of Mines published a brochure entitled the “Mineral Industry in Early America,” by Hillary W. St. Clair.  While largely overlooked in the barrage of celebratory publications at the time, it makes for an interesting read.  The author gives concise descriptions of the mineral industry during the colonial times, its development in the far west, and its “coming of age” in the 20th Century.  A useful data table presents annual production statistics from 1810-1975 for several important metals, the non-metals and fuels groups, and the population of the US.  CLICK HERE to read Part 1 and Part 2 of this publication.

Saint Barbara’s Day.  In many parts of the world, December 4th is celebrated as the feast day of Saint Barbara.  She is considered to be the patron saint of miners as well as artillerymen, military engineers, tunnellers, and others who work with explosives.  There is a rich heritage of artworks inspired by St. Barbara.  Shrines to St. Barbara have been erected at many mines where she is venerated.  In parts of Europe, the feast day is celebrated with parades of miners and bands appearing in historic mining uniforms.  CLICK HERE to learn more about the Saint Barbara tradition. 


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