The Abandoned White Pine Mine, Ontonagon County
The White Pine mine sits flooded and abandoned in Ontonagon County at the base of the Keweenaw Peninsula. The mine began operating in 1880, a second shaft was sunk in 1881, and the mine closed in 1882. Investors weren't too pleased with what the mine was able to produce, so they pulled out.
In 1907, the Calumet & Hecla Mining Company decided to give White Pine another shot. In 1914 they dug the shafts deeper and were able to find sufficient ore – 5,000 tons worth.
By 1917, three more shafts were sunk which helped produce nearly eighteen million pounds of copper and 6.5 tons of silver by 1921. Then it shut down again.
C&H lost the mine due to back taxes and the property was acquired by the Copper Range Company.
During the Korean War, the mine was given a grant and by the mid 1950s, was again producing copper – up to 15,000 tons a day.
The mine shut down again, this time for good, in 1995, and the mine was flooded. Total output for the mine: four billion pounds of copper and 2,812,500 pounds of silver.
Take a look at some of the mine ruins in the photo gallery below. There are areas that you can explore, others you may not. If you visit, respect all 'no trespassing' signs and protect yourself!
WHITE PINE MINE