Santa Isabel Shaft Dedication
After the luncheon was over at the
Community Center, the trails were dry enough for a van tour. Three park
vans took guests from the Hacienda staging area, up the Mine Hill Trail
to the Randol Trail, and then to the Santa Isabel Trail, where the site
is located, about a two-mile trip. At the site, Mike Cox, who was
responsible for closing the old mine shafts and tunnels before the park
was opened, talked about the Santa Isabel site and features.
Mike Cox talked about some of the mine artifacts. These sheet metal
structures were part of a chimney.for a boiler.
Ore cars rode on these rails inside the mine. Heavy steel cables pulled
elevator cars up the shaft.
Kitty Monahan and Mike Cox unveiling the interpretive plaque
Standing to the right of Mike Cox is Chuck Rich, who used to be a miner
here at the Almaden Mines.
This is the remains of the boiler room.
Mike Cox pointing to the foundations of the mine hoist. Behind him is
park interpreter John Slenter, who drove one of the vans.
Two huge hoists sat here on these concrete foundations. The hoist drums
were partially below ground. This was once inside a huge building, now
The new interpretive sign for the Santa Isabel Shaft.
This part talks about the history
of the shaft and how it was named after Elizabeth Randol, the daughter
of mine manager James Randol. It tells about the depth of the mine, the
shaft compartments, and how after the mine was abandoned, the carbon
dioxide gas from the mine was used to make dry ice.
This part shows the inside of the
engine room, which contained the 2 hoists and the Cornish pump. The
hoists lifted miners and ore out of the shaft. The Cornish pump was
used to pump 90,000 gallons of water a day out of the mine.
The picture shows the inside of
one of the mine tunnels. Rock drills and dynamite was used to blow rock
from the ore body. The diagram shows the depth of the shaft and the
tunnels branching off it. It shows that the bottom of the shaft was 499
feet below sea level.
Heading for the overlook of the ore sorting area.
This mined ore was dumped in this area.
The ore was sorted into good ore
and waste rock. Some of the waste rock still contained cinnabar, so in
later years, the tailing piles were re-processed to extract the
View from the site looking east towards the Alamden Valley.
Go back to Page 1: New Almaden Community Center
Created 10/27/07 by Ronald