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Turquoise Mines – Candelaria Hills

The Candelaria Hills, located in Mineral County, Nevada, are nondescript hills west of the historic town of Tonopah. Originally settled in the middle 1800s by Spanish gold and silver prospectors.

Candelaria Hills Turquoise

The main “Candelaria Mine” is a large open pit mine that was established for mining precious metals like gold, silver and copper. Within a few short years, this modest mining camp exploded into the most productive mining district in all of southwestern Nevada, beckoning silver hungry prospectors and their families from all over Nevada, and the West. Soon after it’s boom, the Carson and Colorado Railroad was completed and ran through the Candelaria mining district, bringing in all kinds of important supplies, people, a way to transport and sell silver, and a direct artery to larger Western cities. At one time Candelaria was one of the toughest camps in the West and a terrible place to live, with its high temperatures, high winds and no law enforcement.

Today the town of Candelaria is a ghost town nestled near the open pit mine, which is still in operation for mining ore. The current ore company used to lease out the claims to a few companies to mine turquoise, but has stopped this practice at this time. Yet the surrounding area is home to a number of small turquoise and variscite mines.

Famous and Not-so-Famous Turquoise Mines in the Candelaria Hills:

Blue Boy
Miss Moffet
Blue Mine
Candelaria Mine
Pirate Mine
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