Mineral de Pozos

Useful Information

Location: Mineral de Pozos, south of San Luis Potosi, east of the junction with Route 110. 300 km north of Mexico City on Route 57, the main road to the United States. (21° 13' 00" N, 100° 21' 45" W)
Light: LightIncandescent Electric Light System
Dimension: A=2,305 m asl.
Guided tours:
Address: Jesus Ugalde Tours & Trips, Aldama #10, Mineral de Pozos, Tel: +52-1442-293-0081.
Wendy's Mine Tour, Centenario #38, Mineral de Pozos.
Paul Guerin's Teocalli Tours, San Miguel de Allende, Tel: +52-415-154-7339, Cell: +52-044-415-153-5147. E-mail: contact
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.


1576 Pozos founded when silver was discovered in Zacatecas as an army outpost to protect wagons between Zacatecas and San Luis de la Paz.
27-FEB-1767 mining ended when the Jesuits were expelled.
1844 modern era of mining begins.
1871 mining operation acquired by Francisco Torres and JM Cobos.
1873 mines owned by the Parkman family throm USA.
1910 with the start of the revolution mining ceased and foreign workers left.
1927 the last mine, the Angustias-Dolores, closed.
1982 President Lopez-Portillo declared Mineral de Pozos a National Historical Treasure.


Mineral de Pozos is a mining ghost town, one of those towns which were founded after rich resources were found. This time it was silver, which drew bounty hunters from Mexico and from abroadt to this area. It lasted rather long, several centuries, but finally Pozos became a ghost town, as it was based solely on the silver. Today there is a new income, tourism, and so the ghost town is revived. There are now again two hotels, restaurants, and of course trips into the abandoned mines. Artists also move into this town and make it a both geological and cultural sight.

There are four mines which may be visited, Ex-Hacienda Cinco Señores, Ex-Hacienda Angustias, San Baldomero, and Santa Brigida. However, this are not four show mines, but four abandoned mines in a various state of disrepair. Some mines are pretty easy to visit, and open without restrictions, others are dangerous or there is the need to obtain a permit.

The easiest way to visit a mine is to take a guide. Wendy's Mine Tour does trips into Angustias mine. This mine is electrically lighted and rather easy. Visitors are equipped with helmets, headlamps, and heavy gloves. Good shoes and clothes are advisable, probably bring fresh clothes to change afterwards. The cave visit goes down 200 m deep to the level of the groundwater, which filled lower parts of the mine. Impressive are the veins of ore, containing silver, gold and other metals. There are various minerals, and if you want you can buy local minerals at the end of the tour.

Mineral de Pozos is part of a chain of mountains extending from the state of Hidalgo in the south to Real de Catorce in the state of San Luis Potosi in the north. There are sedimentary and volcanic rocks dating from the Upper Jurassic to present. The volcnic activities connected with its location on a convergent plate rim, is responsible for rich mineral deposits. The rockas are typically covered by caliche up to five meters thick. Caliche is typical layer of sand or clay, which contains minerals like sodium nitrate or sodium chloride.

The silver and gold ore was discovered first at Zacatecas, where it was mined in the MineMina de el Eden. Pozos founded as an army outpost to protect wagons between Zacatecas and San Luis de la Paz, and first named Palmar de Vega. The regions native inhabitants were the Chichimeca, tribes such as the Pames, Jonas and others. They knew about the ore and had their techniques to mine it. When the Jesuits arrived in San Luis to evangelize the locals, they took over the mining until on 27-FEB-1767 they were expelled from New Spain by the Real Pragmatica Sanción edicted by Charles III. Now mining pauseed until 1844 when the modern era of mining began. At the end of the 19th century was the high time of pozos mining, with 500 mining concerns, 306 operating mines and 70,000 to 80,000 residents. The revolution was the beginning of the end for Pozos, mines were closed for years with subsequent flooding, a dramatic fall in the world price of silver made the mines unrentable, and the Cristeros War in 1926 ended the mining.

Despite the fact that the term ghot town is often used, Pozos never was one. Even during the 1950s, there were perhaps 200 people living in Pozos. But there are an enormous amount of ruins, abandoned buildings like miners houses, mining buildings and plants. There are numerous abandonened mines surrounded by mining equipment.