Valles Mines, Missouri, U S A
Founded in 1749 by Francois Valle years before he became Don Francois Valle.
The Valle Mining Company's 4500 acre property every year absorbs 21,000 tons of carbon dioxide and puts out 14,000 tons of oxygen.
This is enough to meet the needs of 63,000 people. [USDA Forest Facts] Site Map

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The Valles Mines Smelter and Scotch Eye Furnace

The Valles Mines Smelter Chimney and Scotch Eye Furnace

The Valles Mines Smelter was one of 5 smelters just in the immediate area.

This smelter chimney has recently fallen down in part. The Furnace Tender lived right next door to it. Smelters were a commonplace in the Missouri Lead Belt, in fact, required to get anything useful out of a pile of raw ore. So much ore was taken out of the Lead Belt that they built a special road for the area, first the Selma Road for ox carts, then a railroad, the M.R.B.T. (Mississippi River and Bonne Terre) which ran straight to the biggest smelter in the area at Herculaneum, so popular that Doe Run, one of the last mining company's left in Missouri is now building a new one there. Unfortunately, while the market for lead has recently risen to an historic high of $1 a pound, this has done little to revive an industry so large a part of Missouri's history and Doe Run announced it would not be smelting lead ore concentrates in Herculaneum after 2013. With Chinese mining companies buying old Missouri lead mines, it raises the question, "Where will they smelt their ore?" Not to mention American miners.

However, the old smelters were not so environmentally friendly and left a residue that lasts for a long time, even centuries. Although Missouri's Lead Belt is littered with hundreds of these open air smokestack sites, Valles Mines' smelters were no exception and the Valles Mines Smelter did not get high marks on its residue test. Recently the EPA began cleanup of nearby residential areas but as Valles Mines has few residents, the Superfund started work in highly populated areas elsewhere.

This picture thanks to bwarner.

"If you want to see the rest of the 1904 album it is currently available (As of 12-2006) at the Webshots address shown here. I could not get to the picture directly but I could when I searched for "Valles Mines Scotch Eye Furnace".
ATTENTION Mining Families:
You can also get to this album of Southeast Missouri Mining Operations at

I googled it like this
The page contains links to pictures and info by BWarner, info about St. Joe Lead, Doe Run Lead, Desloge, Federal Lead and others.
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