If any Copper Country mine company could be considered on par with the size and scope of the great C&H it would be the Copper Range. By 1920 the company had controlling interest in almost the entire southern range, including four mines, five mills, nine towns, a smelter, 70 miles of railroad, and thousands of acres of timberland. At the center of this sprawling empire stood the town where it all began – Painesdale.

Named after Copper Range’s chief investor and superintendent – William Paine – the town of Painesdale served as the home to the company’s corporate headquarters. Residing in the small community were both the Copper Range Offices as well as the Superintendent’s Residence. The town was also home to the Copper Range’s first mine opened along the range – the Champion. Due to Painesdale’s important stature, the town received a greater share of the company’s paternalist offerings including a spectacular sandstone school building and beautifully adorned public library and bathhouse.


Scrapbook Fridays: Public Square Edition

When William Paine established the Champion Mine’s mining community – named after himself of course – he envisioned a large…

The Mining Camp (p1)

For decades the great Copper Rush stayed clear of the rugged hills lying just south of the Portage Valley, the…

The Mining Camp (p2)

As the Champion Mine prospered, scores of immigrants began moving into the houses built for them by the mine company. These…

The Mining Camp (p3)

With a vested interest in nurturing a higher calibre of worker, mine companies like Copper Range actively supported institutions that did…

The Mining Camp (p4)

The Champion Mine’s remote location brought with it many challenges when it came to building a community for its workforce.…

The Mining Camp – (p5)

Before 1900 it was nothing but a thick forest overlooking the Pilgrim Valley, but in just a few short years…