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Mollie Kathleen Gold Mine

Cripple Creek, Colorado

The Mollie Kathleen Gold Mine is a historic shaft that descends 1,000 feet, a depth almost equal to the length of the Empire State Building. In 1891, Mollie Catherine Gortner broke ground when she discovered gold near Cripple Creek, becoming the first female gold mine owner. Mining at the site continued until 1961 when the Carlton Mill closed, leaving no way to process ore. But tours there continuing, featuring an underground vault for displaying gold ore specimens, an underground train and a viable gold ore body assaying 1.5 troy ounces of gold to the ton. The mine, with a year-round temperature of 50 degrees, is toured by 40,000 people per year.


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