Wednesday, July 20, 2011


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            Copperfield is located thirty miles southwest of Salt Lake City.  The attitude is 6500 feet above sea level.  Copperfield was named after the large copper deposit found in the Utah Copper mine.  It used to be called “Upper Bingham”, and was settled shortly after Lower Bingham was settled.  Some of the early miners who came to Bingham looking for mineral built homes in these canyons.  At first the homes were merely tents.  Later log cabins were built.  Today most of our homes are modern in all respects.
            Years ago the mountains of Copperfield were covered with green shrubs and conifers of all kinds.  It was a wonderful place to go to obtain trees for Christmas or for outings for merry-makers.
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            To reach Copperfield now you follow highway 91 to Bingham Canyon.  At the end of Bingham you go through a one-way tunnel one and one fourth miles long.  The tunnel has a six per-cent grade uphill.  About one hundred thirty eight lights are in the tunnel.  An electric eye at the lower end controls the traffic.  You have to wait until the light turns green before you can enter the tunnel.  If you do not have a car there is a sidewalk in the tunnel through which you can walk.

            Turn to the right when you come out of the tunnel and in a very few minutes you will arrive at the famous Copper pit.  This is one of the wonders of the world, and attracts thousands of tourists every year.
            Copperfield used to be a very large and prosperous community.  It had many stores, saloons, hotels and boarding houses.  At one time there was a theater where moving pictures were shown every night.  One of the biggest stores was the Miners Mercantile.  For many years it was owned and run by Mr. Avens.  Today it is fast becoming a ghost town.  Only two stores, one butcher shop and two hotels remain.  Many of the houses have been torn down to make room for the removal of ore from the mountain.
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            The people who live here work in the U.S. mine or for the Utah Copper Company.  The Copper Company furnishes homes for the people who work for it.  These homes are made of brick and concrete and are very attractive.  There are many nationalities in Copperfield.  Recently many Mexican people have come in.

            If you were to come to Copperfield, in Bingham Canyon, Utah, you might expect to find a big town at the end of the tunnel.  Here you would be disappointed.  Lining the streets are very simple homes.  The people who live in the homes are simple too.  Each family tries its best to get along with the other families.  Sometimes this is hard to do for sometimes they cannot understand each other.  The reason for this is that different nationalities live in Copperfield.  These different nationalities choose to live in the different sections of the town.  Most of the Japanese live in Jap Camp.  Most of the Mexicans live in Dinkeyville.  The rest, Italians, Greeks and other, live along the main road.  Oh, yea, the Porto Ricans and Philippines live in Dinkeyville too.

            The religions of Copperfield are mostly Catholic, Methodist, Mormon, and Greek Orthodox.  The Mexican people have different food customs.  They eat the same foods as the others but they prepare it as their forefathers did years ago.  Tortillas are still very good to eat and are made by the Mexican mothers.
            If you were to visit our school you would be surprised at the different races there.  There is not a blond in the fifth or sixth grades.  Everyone has a dark complexion.  Maria is a Mexican girl.  She is very dark.  She has twelve brothers and sisters.  She has long black hair that she can braid around her head three times.  Ruby Saito is a Japanese girl.  She has black hair too.  We like her very much.  She is the best artist in the room.  She is going to write a story about Jap Camp.

            Dinkeyville is located on H and I switch levels above Copperfield.  The mine is almost at their doorstep or at least their next door neighbor.  Most of the homes are made of wood.  Some are brick houses owned by the Utah Copper Company.  They are duplex homes.  Most of them are vacant now because of the strike.  (May, 1946)
            Dinkeyville got its name from the little dinkies or small steam engines which used to be stationed there before the electric engines were brought into use.  There are about 38 families living there now.  Twelve or fourteen families have moved away since the war.   Families are constantly moving in and out when the mines are operating.  Most of the men work for the Utah Copper Company.  A few work underground for the U.S. Mining Company.
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            Dinkeyville is built on the side of a steep mountain.  In the spring the hills are covered with flowers.  The children love to go on picnics and hikes into the canyons.  The road to Dinkeyville is steep and when it rains small gulleys make it impassible.  Deep gulleys are made on the mountain side too, when it rains.  The ruts in the road have to be repaired by the road gang.
            Many different nationalities live in Dinkeyville.  You almost feel as if you are on the top of the world.  It is a wonderful place to live.

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            Jap Camp is situated on the right side of Copperfield on the hillside.  The houses are built at different heights, almost live steps.  They are long and have about six doors.  The windows are small.  The Jap Camp was started in 1912 by Mr. Endo.  When Mr. Endo lived in Jap Camp he built a store and several long buildings with about fourteen rooms in each of them.  Mr. Endo was called the king of the camp because he pretty much controlled the lives of the people living there.

            Mr. Endo had a very beautiful daughter named Mary.  She was very smart and a great favorite for everyone.  She went to Japan to visit her relatives and while she was there she died. Mr Endo sold the property in Jap Camp and moved to Japan where he may still be.

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            Joe Miya owns the store now.  We have six Japanese students in our school.  They are good students and good playmates.  There are only four families living there now.  This is quite different form the twenty-four families that used to be there.  The men that live at the Jap Camp are employed by the Utah Copper Company in the track department as powder monkeys or track men.  Someday you should climb the stairs built of ties and visit these long unique houses in Jap Camp.

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