The Last Gleam of Sunlight: Mining Folklore on the International Frontier

alking deep into a mine, when the last gleam of sunlight is eclipsed by the next turn, reveals the overwhelming weight of being underground. When all signs of the outside world are gone, the bulk of the mountain above seems even more menacing as it threatens to crush the wooden supports that keep miners alive. […]

Mark Twain’s Wild West and the Presidential Election of 1872

In a daring act, facing frightful peril, Mark Twain exploited a legend to launch his onstage comic career. With his future as a lecturer on a knife’s edge, Twain decided to open with a worn-out narrative that had seen better days. A disgruntled audience nearly drove him from the stage … until they understood his brilliant manipulation of their own folklore.

Lost Mines and the Secret of Getting Rich Quick

old! The very word fuels the imagination. And when that furnace is stoked, folklore is not far behind. Legends of lost mines are at the heart of traditions inspired by gold, greed and dreams of sudden wealth. Tales of mines won and lost are international, but they are especially common in the West of the […]

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