"Ore Bucket" Mine

Initial silver discoveries at the "Ore Bucket" Mine were made by Broadhead & Davis on December 30, 1865. They immediately sold the claim to the "Ore Bucket" Mining Company, under Captain Stephen Kidd. Rich ore was initially shipped to the Manhattan Mill at Austin, and in 1869 mention was made of an short-lived mill built by the Big Smoky Company. As early as 1873, an aerial tram was constructed to better transport ore from the mine high on the slopes to the canyon floor below, and by the end of the decade ore was shipped to Ophir and the Metacom Mill at Yankee Blade. By the 1880s, though, worked seems to have diminished after some $150-$250k was produced.

In May 1905, the "Ore Bucket" was relocated by John F. Reardon & Charles S. Wilson and subsequently renamed the Elk Mine. Work continued until 1918. In 1950, the "New Elk" Mine was located by Kenneth Rogers, overlapping the old "Ore Bucket"/Elk claims. It is sometimes referred to as the "New Elk" Tungsten Mine, which was apparently a misnomer in an effort to secure federal funding under the Defense Minerals Exploration Administration (DMEA). While there may have been minuscule amounts of tungsten ore, it was determined that silver was in fact the commodity, and the grant was denied. The aerial tram was updated in 1953, but it is not known when development actually ceased.