MINERAL DE POZOS
Location: Central Mexico
Altitude: 2286 Meters / 7500 Feet
Economy: Tourism, Art Galleries
Seat Population: 3500
Name: Mineral de Pozos roughly translates as Mineral Wells, in reference to the mines here.
The region where Mineral de Pozos is located was originally settled by the Chichimecas and Huachichiles. Though the Jesuits were the first Europeans to arrive in 1576, it was in 1859 when Gonzalo de Tapia arrived to become one of the most revered missionaries, as he recorded different aspects of the indigenous culture, including their languages and explanations of their customs. Before his murder in Sinaloa in 1591, he was successful in negotiating and finalizing a peace agreement that ended the conflict between the Spanish and the indigenous peoples.
Mineral de Pozos was originally named Mineral de San Pedro de los Pozos. It was one of the most significant mining towns in the state from the end of the 19th century into the early 20th century, rendering silver, gold, copper, zinc and mercury. There were two disasters that struck Mineral de Pozos that lead to the decline of the mine. One was a flood which occurred during the Mexican Revolution, and the other was a massive rupture that killed approximately 13,000 workers. A depleted mineral source in correlation with many disasters reached a climax in 1965 when the Santa Brigida mine closed, and Mineral de Pozos was abandoned.
Mineral de Pozos remained a ghost town of crumbling ruins until 1987 when the Toltequidad Festival was repatriated. Celebrating various aspects of indigenous culture, this festival created a draw that attracted artists from around the region. In the late 1990's. artists began settling in the small ghost town, and the town began to bloom once again. Like Real de Catorce, Mineral de Pozos has never re-populated close to its heyday, meaning parts of the town is still abandoned. This makes Mineral de Pozos a picturesque town to explore.