The Oro Copia (also known as the Dos Palmas) is an old mine in the heart of the Orocopia Mountains. It was discovered in 1892 by Edward Fish, his son G. B. Fish and C. O. Barker (of Joshua Tree dam fame). The ore body was reported to be quite rich with gold and they quickly erected a two-stamp mill down at Dos Palmas Spring.
The Gold Canyon Mining Company was formed in 1897 to develop the mine further. In 1899, the company built a 5-stamp mill up at the mine itself. They added a small cyanide plant to capture more gold the same year. Water for the mill was an issue.
In 1902, the Oro Copia Mining and Milling Company took over development of the mine. They dug a well at Dos Palmas Spring and put in a 2-inch pipeline to bring water up to the mine. The stamp mill proved ineffective and was replaced with roller mills. Unfortunately, a lawsuit stopped all work on the mine in 1905. It apparently never re-opened.
Over the years, weather and vandals have made off with just about everything at this old mine site. There is hardly any trace left to tell its story.
Thanks to the work of Larry Vredenburgh for some of the history on this mine.