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University of California Department of Mining and Metallurgy student reports, circa 1902-1914.
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University of California Department of Mining and Metallurgy student reports, circa 1902-1914
Students' reports


University of California (1868-1952), Dept. of Mining and Metallurgy., creator


Christy, S. B. (Samuel Benedict), 1853-1914


Reports written by University of California students in Mining 4 (later 104a): Summer Class in Practical Mining between circa 1902 and 1914. Reports document students' summer experience working in a range of underground mines in California and other western states as well as in Canada and Mexico. The value of the reports lies both in the specifics of mining operations and procedures that the students provide but also in the often striking observations that these relatively privileged students make about social and economic conditions in the mines and surrounding towns. Students often discuss, for example, the ethnic composition of the mine work force and local population, sometimes writing rather lengthily on the breakdown of immigrants in a given area. Students rely on a range of ethnic slurs and slang in these descriptions. Other social and economic issues that come up frequently in these reports include housing and its challenges (such as endemic bedbugs in the mining camps), strikes and labor unions, alcohol consumption, and labor conditions. Most students also narrate their journey to a specific mine and provide precise details about the various modes of transportation required to reach some of these remote locations. The students were required to illustrate their reports and they did so in a range of ways. They were all trained in engineering drawing and many include drawings of mining landscapes, processes, and equipment in their reports. A number of students traveled with cameras and took snapshots of mines and miners to use as illustrations.


1902 (issued)


n-us-ca -- n-usp--
University of California (1868-1952). -- Dept. of Mining and Metallurgy -- Students
Kennedy Mining Company.
Arondo Gold Mining Company (Inyo County, Calif.)
Shasta Copper Exploration Company.
San Francisco and San Joaquin Coal Company.
Karl Quicksilver Mining Company.
Mining schools and education -- California -- Berkeley
Mines and mineral resources -- California
Mines and mineral resources -- West (U.S.)
Mines and mineral resources -- California -- Photographs
Mines and mineral resources -- West (U.S.) -- Photographs
Mines and mineral resources -- Personal narratives
Gold mines and mining -- California -- Mother Lode
Copper mines and mining -- California
Mining camps -- California -- Social conditions
Mining camps -- West (U.S.) -- Social conditions
Mining camps -- California -- Photographs
Mining camps -- West (U.S.) -- Photographs
Miners -- California
Miners -- West (U.S.)
Miners -- California -- Photographs
Miners -- West (U.S.) -- Photographs
Mother Lode (Calif.)
South Eureka Mine (Amador County, Calif.)
Keystone Mine (Amador County, Calif.)
Oneida Mine (Amador County, Calif.)
Argonaut Mine (Amador County, Calif.)
Cerro Gordo Mine (Inyo County, Calif.)
Gwin Mine (Calaveras County, Calif.)
Melones Mine (Calaveras County, Calif.)
Copperopolis (Calaveras County, Calif.)
Union Copper Mine (Calaveras County, Calif.)
Angels Quartz Mine (Calaveras County, Calif.)
Camp Seco (Calaveras County, Calif.)
North Star Mine (Nevada County, Calif.)
Empire Mine (Calif.)
Prescott Hill Mine (Nevada County, Calif.)
Sultana Mine (Nevada County, Calif.)
Champion Mine (Nevada County, Calif)
Union Blue Gravel Mine (Nevada County, Calif.)
Eagle-Shawmut Mine (Tuolumne County, Calif.)
App Mine (Tuolumne County, Calif.)
Harvard Gold Mine (Tuolumne County, Calif.)
Confidence Mine (Tuolumne County, Calif.)
Juniper Mine (Tuolumne County, Calif.)
Mammoth Mine (Shasta County, Calif.)
Balaklala Consolidated Copper Mine (Shasta County, Calif.)
Gladstone Mine (Shasta County, Calif.)
Anchor Mine (Shasta County, Calif.)
Quartz Hill Mine (Shasta County, Calif.)
Bully Hill MIne (Shasta County, Calif.)
Schroeder Mine (Siskiyou County, Calif.)
Wabana Mine (Siskiyou County, Calif.)
Princeton Mine (Mariposa County, Calif.)
Depot Placer Mine (Sierra County, Calif.)
Kingstone Mine (Sierra County, Calif.)
Plumbaga Mine (Sierra County, Calif.)
Dominion Placer Mine (Plumas County, Calif.)
Plumas Eureka Mine (Plumas County, Calif.)
Quincy Mine (Plumas County, Calif.)
Pacific Mine (El Dorado County, Calif.)
Bullychop Gold Mining Company (Trinity County, Calif.)
Golden Gate Mine (El Dorado County, Calif.)
Selby Smelter (Contra Costa County, Calif.)
Trinity Bonanza King Mine (Trinity County, Calif.)
Bear Tooth Mine (Trinity County, Calif.)
Oat Hill Quicksilver Mine (Napa County, Calif.)
Napa Consolidated Quicksilver Mine (Napa County, Calif.)
Yellow Aster Mine (Kern County, Calif.)
Fairview Mine (Kern County, Calif.)
Golden Eagle Mine (Lassen County, Calif.)
Forest Hill Mining District (Placer County, Calif.)
Dahlonega Mine (Placer County, Calif.)
Rawhide Mine (Placer County, Calif.)
Fresno Copper Mine (Fresno County, Calif.)
Helen Quicksilver Mine (Lake County, Calif.)
St. John's Mine (Solano County, Calif.)
Ashburton Mining Company (Sacramento County, Calif.)
Topp Mine (Madera County, Calif.)
Raymond Granite Quarry (Madera County, Calif.)
Treadwell Mines (Alaska)
Alaska Juneau Mine and Mill (Alaska)
Copper Queen Mine (Bisbee, Arizona)
Old Dominion Mine (Globe, Arizona)
North Star Mine (Polaris, Arizona)
Sidney Jennings Gold Mining Company (Mohave County, Az.)
Old Canyon Mine (Nevada)
Casting Copper Mine (Nevada)
Combination Mine (Goldfield, Nevada)
Steptoe Valley Mining and Smelting Company (Nevada)
Mohawk Mine (Goldfield, Nevada)
Nevada Consolidated Copper Company (Nevada)
Pine Grove Gold Mining Company (Nevada)
Silver Top Mine (Nevada)
Orphir Mine (Nevada)
Tonopah Mining Company (Nevada)
Lucky Boy Mine (Nevada)
Quartette Mine (Nevada)
Nevada Hills Mining Company (Nevada)
Belmont Mine (Nevada)
Mispale Mine (Nevada)
Standard Mine (Idaho)
Bunker Hill and Sullivan Mining and Concentrating Company (Idaho)
Tiger-Poorman Lead and Silver Mine (Idaho)
Hecla Mine (Idaho)
Blake Mining, Milling and Investment Company (New Mexico)
Republic Mining District (Washington)
Belcher Mine (Washington)
United Copper Mine (Washington)
Briggs Mines (Oregon)
Beaver Hill Coal Mines (Oregon)
Pennsylvania Mine (Montana)
New World Mining District (Montana)
Bald Butte Mining Company (Montana)
Montana Tonopah Mine (Montana)
Utah Consolidated Mining Company (Utah)
Old Telegraph Mine (Utah)
Old Jordan Mine (Utah)
Cripple Creek District (Colorado)
El Paso Mine (Colorado)
Moctezuma Copper Company (Mexico)
Cananea Consolidated Copper Company (Mexico)
Las Chispas Mine (Mexico)
Cedros Island (Mexico)


Included in: History of Science and Technology Collection.
COLLECTION STORED, IN PART, OFF-SITE : Advance notice required for use.
University of California Department of Mining and Metallurgy student reports, BANC MSS C-A 207, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley.
Related collection: Samuel B. Christy papers (BANC MSS C-B 1010).
From 1894 until 1914, students finishing up their junior year in the University of California's Department of Mining and Metallurgy were required to take Mining 4 (later Mining 104a): Summer Class in Practical Mining, a course requiring that they spend summers gaining practical experience working underground in a mine. Upon completion of their summer practicum, students were required to prepare a report and present it to their fellow students and faculty in a seminar. The course description from the university's 1905 Announcement of Courses of Instruction reads as follows: "During the vacation at the end of the Junior year, all mining students will be required to spend at least four weeks un the systematic study of practical mining, taking notes and making sketches of processes observed. This is the minimum requirement. It is recommended that all free vacation time throughout the four years be devoted to this study, and that a large part of the time be given to actual work underground at the various branches of practical mining. Details in every case must be arranged in consultation with Professor Christy. A full report on this work must be presented and read before the Seniors at the mining conferences during the Senior year. This conference will be held weekly." During the twenty years of the course's existence, students were mainly supervised by Professor Samuel B. Christy, Dean of the College of Engineering from 1885 to 1917. Students made their own arrangements for travel and employment, often choosing a mining district or region in California or elsewere in the western United States, Canada, or Mexico and simply applying to a range of mines until a foreman would take them on to do underground work, such as mucking or timbering. It was often no simple task, the reports in this collection show, to convince a foreman to hire a college student whose experience underground in the mines might have been limited or even non-existent. Mine managers often prefered to put these students to work in the mine's office to take advantage of their literacy rather than have them doing manual labor underground. The purpose of the course, however, was to gain experience underground, so students were forced to navigate the unfamiliar world of mostly immigrant mine labor.
In English.


Student works.

Physical Description:

3 cartons, 2 oversize folders (3.75 linear feet)





Copyright Note:

COLLECTION STORED, IN PART, OFF-SITE : Advance notice required for use.