Photo of the day – Hatcher Pass in Alaska

Photo of the day – Hatcher Pass in Alaska

Independence Mine, Hatcher Pass in Alaska

Independence Mine, Hatcher Pass in Alaska

“What is now called Independence Mine was once two mines: The Alaska Free Gold Mine on Skyscraper Mountain, and Independence Mine on Granite Mountain. In 1938 the two were brought together under one company, the Alaska-Pacific Consolidated Mining Company (APC). With a block of 83 mining claims, APC became the largest producer in the Willow Creek Mining District. The claims covered more than 1,350 acres (5.5 km2) and included 27 structures. In its peak year, 1941, APC employed 204 men, blasted nearly a dozen miles of tunnels, and produced about 35,000 ounces of gold.

In 1942, the War Production Board designated gold mining as nonessential to the war effort. Gold mining throughout the United States came to a halt, but Independence Mine was permitted to continue to operate because of the presence of scheelite, an ore of the “strategic mineral” tungsten, which occurs in the quartz lode with the gold. In 1943, Independence Mine was ordered to close. Mining interests returned to Hatchers Pass when gold prices rose in the mid-1970s; this resulted in a short period of production from the Independence Mine in 1982 by Coronado Mining Company.[5]

Today, Independence Mine is a part of the Independence Mine State Historical Park, a popular winter recreation area. Displays of mining artifacts may also be viewed at the Dorothy Page Museum and Old Wasilla Townsite in downtown Wasilla, Alaska.

The Independence was the largest mine in the Willow Creek District, over a dozen other hard rock mines operated, and may operate again, within a few miles.”

Bibliographic details for “Willow Creek mining district”


About the author

JOHN J GENTRY'S BIO: John J Gentry is a lifelong adventure travel enthusiast and international manager, Philanthropist, and ex-solder. Spent 2011-2015 developing an international team in HsinChu, Taiwan. Early on he spent the better part of the 90’s working with the US Army in Germany, Iraq and Kuwait. For kicks, he studied in Alaska 2008-2010 international history for a greater understanding in his adventure travels. He has had some great experiences, and successes traveling around the world documenting his travels with his family via

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