The Coeur d'Alene Mining District of northern Idaho is remarkable for its number of large ore bodies and for the amount of its historical production of lead, zinc and silver. Since veins were first discovered in 1884, more than 127 Mt (140 million st) of ore have been produced from narrow, high-grade veins. Mining continues at the Lucky Friday, Galena and Sunshine mines. All have been in production for decades. At these mines, more efficient mining and exploration techniques have reduced costs while adding significant new reserves. Even the old Bunker Hill Mine, where ore was first found in 1875, continues operation on a limited basis, partly involving production of world-class pyromorphite specimens. Until recently, the Coeur Mine was also a profitable silver producer. Other large producers have included the Star-Morning, Hecla, Page, Standard-Mammoth, Hercules and Gold Hunter mines.
NIOSH, Spokane Research Laboratory, East 315 Montgomery Ave., Spokane, WA 99207-2223