Mineral Hills Mine, Santa Catalina Island

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Mineral Hills Mine (1860-1875), Santa Catalina Island was opened in 1860 by Santos Louis Buuchette. It operated until 1874, and although it yielded small amounts of minerals, there was not enough ore to warrant a large-scale mining operation and it did not prove financially successful.

Before the Gold Rush in 1848, there were rumors that gold had been discovered on Catalina. A similar discovery on the mainland in the San Fernando area also pre-dated the gold rush. As the gold fields in the north came under prized ownership, enterprising individuals began to search for gold elsewhere. Catalina was one location drawing fortune-hunting miners. Although gold and silver were discovered on the Island, only small amounts were found in some island canyons, thus a Catalina Island gold boom never materialized.