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The town of Cave Creek is in the state of Arizona. During the 1800s, many prospectors visited Cave Creek. Prospectors discovered gold, silver, and copper in the mountains surrounding the town. These minerals brought many miners to the region. Prospectors were miners, but not all miners filed claims to own mines. Mining was very difficult work. The rocks in Black Mountain were so hard that the miners had to use dynamite to remove the ore!
Taking ore out of the ground is the first step in mining. The process of using dynamite for mining is known as drilling and blasting. Miners drilled several holes into the rock. They would then fill these blast holes with the dynamite. The dynamite explosion created new tunnels for the miners to locate and then remove the ore.
The Taylor family obtained the Mormon Girl Mine in 1888. Issac N. Taylor, his three sons, and a small crew mined for copper, gold, lead, and other minerals. They located ore deposits by looking for certain types of rocks. When they saw a bluish-green rock with sparkling lines of quartz called chrysocolla, they knew they had found copper ore. The Mormon Girl Mine made the Taylor family wealthy, but also caused them hardship. In the end, like many miners, they lost most of their riches.