Skip to main content

An overview of the US mining industry

The United States mining industry is deeply rooted in our national culture and has shaped the country we know today.

The first instances of commercial mining in the US can be traced back all the way to the 1700s. The natural resources found during these mining endeavors sparked the interest needed for the first US citizens to travel further and discover western areas of our land which are now states like California and Utah. Some of the major natural resources that created a solid base for the US mining industry were gold, coal, copper, and silver. Although the industry has made significant changes and development since its early stages, many of these materials remain major contributors to our national economy.

The United States mining industry has found incredible success with various important materials. We are global production leaders in three of the most sought-after natural resources including gold, coal, and copper. Copper is used in many of the products we have come to rely on like cars and electronic devices. The US consistently holds a spot in the top five copper-producing countries annually. Our gold industry also produces over 237 tonnes per year, making us a strong global producer within the top five nations for this material as well. Although our products within these industries are impressive, our coal mining industry tops them both by taking the number one producing spot in the world and providing our main source of energy.

The mining companies that work to build our mining industry provide robust economical support and thousands of jobs to the US annually. Wollam Construction specializes in helping these companies build the safe mines they need to retrieve our nation’s precious natural resources. Visit our website to see our work in the Intermountain West.

Large Wollam Construction LogoArizona Mining Companies

Arizona has a rich mining history at its roots that has supplemented the state’s economy by providing jobs and reliable natural resources for over a century. The major materials mined have changed significantly over time and now include large contributors like copper, molybdenum, construction sand and gravel, Portland cement, crushed stone, and lime.

California Mining Companies

California has a famous and in-depth mining history. The state’s commercial mining history alone can be traced back to the 1800s with the beginning of the California Gold Rush. This rush sparked major interest in the state and shaped the worldwide mining industry we know today by providing new mining techniques and bringing awareness to the environmental impact of mining.

Colorado Mining Companies

The mining industry in Colorado has contributed greatly to the state’s economy by providing many jobs and natural resources for decades. Mining became popular in CO in 1859 with the discovery of gold and went on to become a major part of Colorado’s history.

Idaho Mining Companies

Idaho holds a rich history of mining that has provided a variety of metals, non-metallic and industrial materials. The state can attribute much of its mining success to its geologic diversity that has kept the industry alive even when popular materials run dry.

Montana Mining Companies

Montana’s mining industry thrives on the state’s abundance of natural resources. The materials that contribute most to the success of Montana mining include gold, copper, silver, platinum, nickel, cobalt, rhodium, zinc, lime, talc, garnet, and tungsten.

Nevada Mining Companies

Nevada’s in-depth mining history dates back many years to when the state’s minerals were used by Native Americans to create important hunting pieces such as arrowheads, spear points, and tools. Much like today, the inhabitants of this area relied heavily upon its mineral wealth to build their society.

New Mexico Mining Companies

New Mexico’s mining industry is deeply rooted in the state’s culture and economic success. Commercial mining for coal, gold, and silver began in the state in 1800s and created a strong foundation for the mining industry to build upon and become what it is today.

Utah Mining Companies

Utah’s mining history began long before its statehood when the Mormon pioneers settled in the territory in 1847. Although the area belonged to Mexico at the time, the pioneers worked to develop the land by mining for stone, clay, sand, gravel, and cement to build homes, businesses, and churches.

Wyoming Mining Companies

Wyoming’s mining industry has played a major role in the state’s economy over the years as it employs a large number of Wyoming residents and brings in billions of dollars in revenue annually. Although the beginning of mining in WY is unclear, the first important discovery came in 1842 when a trapper found gold in the South Pass area.

Wollam Construction Locations Map