The Climax Mine worked one of the largest molybdenum deposits in the world and extracted some 470 million tons of ore. Claims were staked on Bartlett Mountain, Colorado in 1879 for what was later (in 1895) identified as molybdenum ore. As a market for molybdenum developed, a syndicate formed in 1917 to open the Climax Mine. The Mine, operated by the Climax Molybdenum Company, shipped its first ore in 1918. Climax had its own ore processing facilities and a company town. The Climax Glory Hole was growing by 1936, the result of surface subsidence from the massive scale of underground block cave mining that eventually removed much of Bartlett Mountain. In 1958 the Climax Molybdenum Company became a division of American Metal Climax, Inc. The town of Climax was phased out in the early 1960s as workers moved to nearby mountain communities. Much of an adjacent stream valley was acquired by 1970 to replace existing tailings containment facilities and was progressively buried by Climax tailings. American Metal Climax, Inc. (AMAX) began developing an open pit on the site in 1972. AMAX merged with Cyprus Minerals Company in 1993 to become Cyprus-Amax Minerals Company and by 1994 the Climax Mine employed only a few workers for facilities maintenance and environmental work.
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