Bisbee Lavendar Pit
The Lavender Pit is an open pit copper mine located in Cochise County,
Bisbee, Arizona. It is located in the near vicinity of the very rich
copper deposit the Copper Queen Mine. The El Chino mine located near
Silver City, New Mexico is an open-pit copper mine. Open-pit mining
refers to a method of extracting rock or minerals from the earth by
their removal from an open pit or borrow. Cochise County is located
in the southeastern corner of the state of Arizona. ... Bisbee is
a city located in Cochise County, Arizona, USA. As of the 2000 census,
the city had a total population of 6,090. ...
Phelps Dodge Corporation started digging the mine in 1951. They extracted
46 million tons of overburden before reaching the valuable ore. It
is estimated that over a billion tons of copper was mined from the
pit, with good amounts of gold, silver and lead also being extracted.
Bisbee Turquose was also a by-product of this mining activity. Mining
operations in the pit ended in 1974.
Because of the very hard host rock, this pit has much steeper sides
than other open pit copper mines in the southwest area. The pit covers
an area of 300 acres (1.2 km²), and is 900 feet (274 m) deep.
Vast tonnage of dump rock is spread all around Bisbee and the southeastern
Mule Mountains area. This dump material, along with the large open
hole of the pit, is considered an ecological disaster by many, but,
for its time, Phelps Dodge Corporation was within federal guide lines
on mining codes. The Mule Mountains as viewed from the west, looking
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