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Former NMHFM BOD Hugh Evans stops in with special gift for museum

March 2,2019

Former NMHFM Board of DirectorsHugh Evans stopped by yesterday with a special gift for the museum.  Hugh, his son-n-law Steve Clemms, and daughter Debbie Clemms, donated a collage of historically significant murals, The History of Mining, painted by Irwin D. Hoffman for the 1939 Golden Gate International Exposition in San Francisco. 

The original murals, oils on stretched canvas, range in size from 7' x 5' to 7' x 11'. Some of the larger pieces weigh up to 150 pounds.

The first three murals depict the early developmental stages of mining moving into the Iron Age when humans discovered iron can be made into tools, mining and metallurgical practices of the Egyptians, and ancient Greek and Roman miners who worked their mines by kindling fire against the ore-bearing rock then dousing it with water until it cracked and could be pried loose. The last three murals detail various phases of surface mining, modern mining and reducing operations, with the final mural serving as a summary of the story of humans and metals with a miner holding a piece of ore which makes possible all that surrounds him- the city, ocean liner, railroad, car, radio, and the movies.

The murals are part of the Colorado School of Mines (Mines) Geology Museum's permanent collection. From 1988 - 2003, the murals were on temporarily on display at NMHFM having been loaned to us by Mines.

Thank you, Hugh, for this terrific ensemble of these important works of mining art. We can't wait to get it on display!

Information about the murals excerpted from: An Artist's Take On Mining History, A Series of Murals Spans Time To Connect The Past With The Present, MINES Spring 2018, Pages, 24-25.


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