Glimpses into the Iron Ore Mining Past of Sunrise, Wyoming

AHC Archivist Ginny Kilander is presenting a talk June 8, 2018, titled “Glimpses into the Iron Ore Mining Past of Sunrise, Wyoming” at the Mining History Association Annual Conference that’s happening in Deadwood-Lead, South Dakota. Her talk is part of the session: “Communities, Corporations, and Mine Workers on the Western Plains”.

Ginny’s presentation features images from a newly acquired photo album the AHC purchased that offers a look at operations at the Sunrise Iron Ore Mine and the town of Sunrise, Wyoming, from 1899 to 1920.


Sunrise, Wyoming, was a company mining town, founded in 1899 by the Colorado Fuel and Iron Company. By the early 1900s there were four room homes, a boarding house, school house, and a community building with a hall and reading room.

In the 1910s and 1920s, further improvements included a YMCA building, parks, a hospital, and a better utility system.


The population of Sunrise, Wyoming reached more than 500 individuals by 1920 because of the Sunrise Iron Ore Mine that it was built around. The Sunrise Mine produced more than 40 million tons of iron ore, with peak production in 1941.


For eighty years the mine was the key source of iron for the Colorado Fuel and Iron Company.

The mine closed in 1980 and Sunrise became another mining ghost town in Wyoming.

The Sunrise Mine Historic District was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2005.

Photos above are some of the many to be found in the Sunrise photo album.



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