Mining virtual: English

Mining in the Atacama Region, Chile

Mines of Chañarcillo and Juan Godoy, Chile

Museo Virtual, Atacama

W. Griem, 2007 - 2020

Chañarcillo today
Historical Records
District Map
page +

pic Pueblo Chanarcillo
The ruins of Chañarcillo and Juan Godoi  today - an tourist excursion
The ruins of the Juan Godoi village of Chañarcillo mines still show the magnitude of the mining district. . . .

Las minas de Chañarcillo y Juan Godoi
The mines today
Descubridora  - Mina Dolores 1  -  Dolores 3  - La Colorada  - Bocona - Santa Rosa - San Francisco - Constancia. From the famous mines of Chañarcillo, almost nothing remained visible from the outside, an attempt to plot something . . .

Geología de Chañarcillo PIC
Geology of the Chañarcillo mines (San Roman, 1894)

Historical descriptions of the mines

El manto:

El manto en general
Manto de los Bolados
Manto de los Cobos
Las Guías
Mines of the Colorado or San Francisco lode
Geology of the vein Colorada Domeyko (1846)
Valenciana Cobriza
Profile Valenciana (Moesta)
San José y San Francisco


Introduction to the Chañarcillo sector
Chañarcillo, one of the most important silver mining districts in the world.

The module of Chañarcillo del Museo Virtual tries to illuminate the history of this famous silver deposit and the mythical village of Juan Godoi (today Juan Godoy). Between 1832 and 1890, then for a period of about 58 years, this place catapulted the Atacama region to the leading edge of world mining. The Atacama Region joined industrialization and globalization.
The pages of the history (Here) give a small chronological list of the most important facts of the Chañarcillo area.

The "tourist pages" (Here) show the sector as it is now and show the striking environment between the desert with the remains of walls and debris and a brilliant history, of incalculable riches

For more information, especially more detailed information, a list of all mines with active links to production data or geological data is included in "Pertenencias".

There are some historical texts, for example a text on the apires and barreteros of Chañarcillo de Gilliss, 1855, an interesting document on life in mines of the time 1855.

As we know, industrialization and technology have shown an unimaginable increase over the last 150 years. For example, the amount of silver produced worldwide in 1850, today Chile produces in a single year - Chile is only number 6 in the current ranking of silver production (2003): Chañarcillo, with its production rate of 1869, today would contribute only 3.4% of Chilean silver production extracted throughout the year.

Cemetery of Juan Godoy
The cemetery of Juan Godoi

Timeline of the history of Juan Godoi and Chañarcillo

Pic Estadistica Lomas Bayas
general - 1869 - 1876

Cartas de Chañarcillo
Maps of Chañarcillo

Map of Domeyko (1903)
Map of veins: Moesta
Map of mining rights (1862)
Map Dolores 3ra
Perfil geológico
Perfil Domeyko
Perfil de la mina Candelaria

3 dimensional view of the sector

Geological Quotes

Informative Chart
Place: Chañarcillo, Juan Godoi or Juan Godoy
Copiapó Communa, Atacama Region
UTM Location: E360.490 / N69.22.780
Height: 880 m
Location: 50 km to the S (straight line) of Copiapó.
Road distance: 73 kms from Copiapó
Status: Abandoned
Mineralization: Ag (silver) in veins and layers.

Pic listado Lomas Bayas
Listing of all historic mines with historical production
A listing of all historic mines with historical production information and owners . . .

Ferrocarriles de Chañarcillo, Atacama
The railway of Juan Godoi and
Line to Chañarcillo

Pic Chañarcillo
Historical Records
General historical texts
Domeyko in Chañarcillo: Historia y cuentos
Descripcion de KUNZ (1890): Juan Godoi, historia, situación en 1890
The miners of Chañarcillo (Gilliss, 1855)

Historical images:
Picture of the mines (por A. Pissis)
Dolores 1 mine

Carta Juan Godoy y Chañarcillo

Estación Ferrocarril, Chañarcillo Pueblo Juan Godoy, Chañarcillo Mina Dolores 3, Chañarcillo Mina Dolores 1, Chañarcillo Mina Santa Rosa, Chañarcillo Mina Descubridora, Chañarcillo Mina Colorada, Chañarcillo Mina Bocona, Chañarcillo Mina Constancia, Chañarcillo
mapa de Chañarcillo - hoy


Literature / Collection:
(1843): Incursión geológica a las cordilleras de Copiapó. In: Geología. Imp. Cervantes, Santiago. 5:457 p.   Echegaray N. (1905):  El Mineral de Chanarcillo - Bol Soc Nac de Mineria. - 106 Santiago
● Domeyko, I. (1909): Jeología. – Tomo Quinto, edición oficial; Santiago de Chile (Imprenta Cervantes); [Collection W. Griem]
• GILLISS, J.M. (1855): The U.S. Naval Astonomical Expedition to the southern Hemisfere, during the years 1849-50-51-52. - Volume 1 (Chile); Washington A.O.P. Nicholson Printer. [Collection W. Griem]
Henwood, W.J. (1871): On the Mining District of Chañarcillo in Chili. - Transactions of the Royal Geological Society of Cornwall; 8:1, pp. 169-153.
• Hernández, Roberto (1932): Juan Godoy o el descubrimiento de Chañarcillo; 16. de mayo 1832 - 1932. - vol. 1 y vol. 2; 676 páginas, Imprenta Victoria, Valparaíso.
• Kunz, Hugo (1890): Chile und die deutschen Kolonien. - 634 páginas: Commisonsverlag Julius Klinkhard, Leipzig.  [Collection W. Griem]
• Lloyd, J.A. (1853): The Mines of Copiapó. - Journal of Royal Geografical Society of London; vol 23 (1953), pp.196 - 212; Wiley, London. [Collection W. Griem]
• MAYER, C. (1988):  Ag-und Ag-Cu-Lagerstaetten in der Region Atacama,Nordchile Lagerstaettenkundl. und Bsp. der Distr. Chanarcillo und El Jardin   Heidelberger Geowissenschaftliche Abhandlungen Bd. 19 p.XII+290 95 Abb., 34 Tab.,9 T Heidelberg.
• Moesta, Fr. A. (1870): Ueber das Vorkommen der Chlor-, Brom- und Jodverbindungen des Silbers in der Natur - Ein Beitrag zur Kenntniss der geologischen und bergbaulichen Verhältnisse von Nordchile. - 47 páginas, 4 tablas; Marburg. [Collection W. Griem]
• Pissis, A. (1875): Atlas de la Geografía Física de la República de Chile. - Instituto Geográfico de Paris, 23 laminas. [Collection W. Griem].
• San Román, Francisco (1894): Reseña Industrial e Histórica de la Minería i Metalurgjia de Chile. - Santiago de Chile, Imprenta Nacional, Moneda 73; 501 páginas. [Collection W. Griem]
Tornero, Recaredo (1872): Chile Ilustrado - Guía Descriptivo. -  495p. 200 grabados de madera; Librería i ajencias del Mercurio, Valparaíso. [Collection W. Griem]
• WHITEHEAD, W.L. (1919):  The veins of Chañarcillo, Chile.-  Econ. Geol. 14: p.1-45
• Yunge, G. (1905): Estadística Minera de Chile 1903. - Sociedad Nacional de Minería  Vol.3; Imprenta y Litografía "Universo".

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Published: 7.2.2007, Updated: 17.9.2017, 14.1.2018, 28.02.2021
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