A lighthearted look at life in Climax, the famous Colorado molybdenum mining camp. Jim Ludwig, both a miner and a manager, recalls the "Glory Days" when this was one of the greatest mines of the world. His book "The Climax Mine, An Old Man Remembers The Way it Was," is not an historical tome, but a collection of essays and stories about some of the sixty thousand employees who at one time or another passed through the gate at the crest of Fremont Pass. Employees that would carve 497 million tons of ore from Bartlett Mountain and process it to recover 1.9 billion pounds of elemental molybdenum before the mine closed in the mid eighties. He tells of the miners and their life, the hard and dangerous work, the humor, the recreation and the devil may care attitude that sustained them through the long, high altitude winters.
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Jim Ludwig, a Wisconsin native, came to Climax in 1950 as an engineering student from the Wisconsin Institute of Technology, now "The University of Wisconsin, Platteville." After a stint as a mine laborer, he became a contract miner and earned enough to return to Wisconsin and complete his degree of Bachelor of Science in Mining Engineering. Returning to Climax, he worked through the ranks of underground mine management to become Mine Superintendent in 1963. He began his general management career as the Assistant General Superintendent in 1965, and became General Manager in 1969. In late 1971, he moved to the Amax Western Operations office in Golden, Colorado as the Manager of Mines. He requested early retirement in 1982 while he was Senior Vice President of Climax, in charge of operations, engineering and exploration. Today he is founder and chairman of the Pleasant Avenue Nursery, Inc. in Buena Vista, Colorado, a company which has developed the art of raising high altitude native plants for reclamation and landscaping. Now semi-retired, he has seen the company become important throughout Colorados high Country in both factors. He is a remarried widower with an extended family throughout the United States. He began writing as a hobby at a late age, generally to inform his children "who he really was," and then found an interest among his old mining friends for his sometimes laconic, other times loquacious accounts of growing up, while working in the mine. Here he has assembled a selection of his tales of the Climax Mine, as a rambling narrative of the "good old days".Review:
"Ludwig writes both for the ear and the eye. His descriptions of the particulars of mining are vivid and understandable." --Terry Fitzsimmons, Public Relations Director, AMAX, retired
"Jim's collection of colorful and moving essays captures and preserves the human side of the Climax story." --Steve Voynick, author of Climax: The History of Colorado's Climax Molybdenum Mine
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Book Description Pleasant Avenue Nursery, Inc., 2000. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P110967941903