It Used To Be...

Ed Moore

Mission Viejo, United States

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Artist's Description

It used to be metal wheels on the conveyer would churp over and over as the ore rolled along into the stamp mill. Once inside, you could hear the roar of giant crushers hitting the rocks and breaking them into smaller chunks, which then it would be crushed again and again. After that, various poisonous chemicals would leach away the dirt and dust, and expose the gold ore. Bags of gold would go to the assay office to be turned into silver dollars, which in turn were used to pay the miners so they could feed their families. The men would celebrate each weekend in town, drinking and carrying on. I remember as a child watching a man get literally thrown out of a bar at 6 am, as my brother and I made our way to the store to buy a loaf of white break for French Toast. Things were different then.

Today, the mine is quiet. It waits to be sold to a developer, who will turn it into another faceless high density residential living area with a fancy golf course, swimming pool, and convenience store.

I don’t much like the “new” Montana. I prefer to sit here, ignore the sign, and think about the days of my grandfathers and father, and to listen to their calm voices as they taught me right from wrong, and how to be a man.

It is all changing before my eyes, and I feel helpless. I just watch and hang my head. Like Pogo said, “We have met the enemy, and they are us.” This photo was featured in Contrasting Perceptions in August 2009.

Artwork Comments

  • Patricia Montgomery
  • C J Lewis
  • Nith
  • joshuatree1
  • Ed Moore
  • wahumom
  • Ed Moore
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