Around 1827, Benjamin Haile (1768 - 1849) discovered gold on his property in eastern Lancaster County. Haile Gold Mine was one of America's first operating gold mines.
The mine operated off and on for decades. In 1887, Carl Adolph Thies (1832 - 1917) was brought in as manager of the mine. His "Barrel Chlorination Process" was used to extract gold from low grade ores. The next two decades were among the most profitable in the Mine's history.
Around 1903 a group photograph was taken at Haile Gold Mine. The photo appeared in the Kershaw Times with the caption, 'How Many Do You Recognize?'.
Carl Thies retired from the Mine in 1904, leaving his son, Ernest A. Thies (1868 - 1908), in charge.
Monday August 10, 1908, about 9:07 a.m., a boiler exploded at the stamp mill killing Ernest Thies and injuring several others. The heyday of the Haile Mine was over.
Mining continues off and on. Significant production has occurred over the years, often spurred by fluctuations in the price of gold.
After nearly 200 years of intermittent operations, the Haile Gold Mine remains the most famous and productive gold mine east of the Mississippi.