Another day of sightseeing. This morning we headed south to visit the Mission Copper Mine south of Tucson. After a short introductory movie at the Mineral Discovery Center, we headed by bus to the south rim of the mine. The mine is a quarter-mile deep, two miles from north to south, and a mile-and-three-quarters from east to west. Standing on the rim the huge earth moving trucks look like toys. The picture of Brian and I standing next to a tire from one of the trucks will give you some perspective on the size of these vehicles. Each ton of ore removed from the mine produces about 13 pounds of copper yet it requires removal of about three tons of waste (upper layers of dirt and rock) for each ton of ore!
After lunch at a local Mexican restaurant, we visited the Tumacacori Mission run by the National Park Service. In 1691 Jesuit missionaries (blackrobes) arrived to convert the native Pima tribes. in 1767 they were expelled by King Charles III of Spain to be replaced by the Franciscans (greyrobes). It was under the Franciscans that the mission church was built.