Puneet Varma (Editor)

List of lost mines

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Lost mines are a popular form of lost treasure legend. The mine involved is usually of a high-value commodity such as gold, silver or diamonds. Often there is a map (sometimes called a "waybill") purportedly showing the location of the mine. Common reasons given for the mines being lost include:


  • The mine is discovered and worked by a recluse who refuses to divulge the location, and dies without revealing the location.
  • The mine is worked by native peoples who refuse to divulge the location to others.
  • The mineral deposit is discovered in a remote location, and upon returning to the area the discoverer cannot find it again.
  • The discoverer dies of hunger, thirst, or exposure shortly after discovering the deposit, and his body is found with rich ore specimens in his possession.
  • The discoverers are killed by hostile natives. Sometimes the natives cover up the entrance to the mine.
  • In Spanish colonies in the New World, many lost mines were supposedly worked under the direction of Jesuit priests before their sudden expulsion in 1767.
  • Some lost mine legends have a historical basis; some have none. But the lure of lost mine legends is attested by the many books on the subject, and the popularity of publications such as Lost Treasure magazine.

    List of lost mine legends

    Legends of lost mines are probably worldwide. Those listed below are just a sampling.


  • King Solomon's Mines
  • Australia

  • Lasseter's Reef (Never actually mined)
  • Bolivia

  • Sacambaya mine
  • Brazil

  • Muribeca mine
  • Canada

  • Lost Lemon Mine, Alberta
  • Pitt Lake gold find, British Columbia
  • Jolly Jack's Lost Mine, British Columbia
  • Lost McLeod Mine, Northwest Territories
  • Johanssen's Lost Platinum Cache, British Columbia
  • Foster's Lost Mine, Vancouver Island
  • Lost Christie Lead, British Columbia
  • Lost Silver Lead of Monashee Creek, British Columbia
  • Colombia

  • Chivor mine, an emerald mine lost for 200 years, then found again.
  • Mexico

  • Lost diamond mine of Vicente Guerrero
  • Lost Naranjal mine, Durango
  • Planchas de Plata, Sonora, (sometimes called Bolas de Plata). Periodically assumed to be "lost," although the location is well documented.
  • Tayopa silver mine, Sonora
  • Russia

  • In the 19th century, gold fever was prevalent in the Ural region near Ekaterinburg. There are many legends of the lost mines, for example in Mamin-Sibiryak's stories.
  • There are many modern stories of lost diamond mines in the Yakutia region of north and northeast Russia
  • United States

  • Lost Padre mine, various locations in USA
  • Lost Cabin mine, various locations in USA
  • Arizona

  • Lost Dutchman's Gold Mine, Arizona
  • Mine with the Iron Door, Arizona
  • California

  • Lost Pegleg mine, California; supposedly found by mountain man "Pegleg" Smith
  • Lost Breyfogle mine, California or Nevada
  • The Lost Cement Mine, California
  • The Lost Dutch Oven Mine, California
  • Death Valley Scotty's secret mine, California or Nevada
  • Lost Gunsight mine, California or Nevada
  • Colorado

  • Lost Pin, Delta County, Colorado
  • Recluse Goatherder's Gold Mine, Colorado
  • Three Skeletons, La Plata County, Colorado
  • Idaho

  • The Wheelbarrow Mine, Idaho
  • Kentucky

  • Swift's silver mine, Kentucky
  • Missouri

  • Yocum silver mine, Stone County, Missouri
  • Nevada

  • The Lost Sheepherders Mine, Nevada
  • New Mexico

  • Lost Adams Diggings, New Mexico or Arizona
  • Oregon

  • Lost Blue Bucket Mine, Oregon
  • Two Frenchmen Mine, Oregon
  • Texas

  • Lost Nigger Gold Mine, Texas
  • San Saba mine (sometimes called the Lost Bowie mine or the Lost Almagres mine), Texas
  • Utah

  • Lost Rhoades mine, Utah
  • Washington

  • Danville's Lost Gold Ledge, Washington (state)
  • Janni's chimney, Washington (state)
  • Lost Doukhobor Ledge, Washington (state)
  • Fiction

    The Agatha Christie Poirot short story "The Lost Mine" features the topic of a map revealing the location of a lost mine in Burma being stolen in London, and its carrier murdered.


    List of lost mines Wikipedia

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