The Burra Burra Mine, Burra, South Australia

B. Grguric, A. Pring, G. Drew

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Citations (Scopus)


Australia's Burra Burra mine has been famous for crystalline azurite, cuprite, and botryoidal and pseudomorphic malachite specimens since 1845. Recently renewed mining operations have also revealed libethenite crystals. 

European settlement of South Australia began in 1836 and was conceived as a great social experiment: there was to be no convict labor, and the proceeds of land sales were directed into a migration fund to bring workers and their families from Europe to provide a labor pool for the new colony. The economic basis of this utopian dream was flawed, and within a few years the young colony of South Australia was on the verge of bankruptcy. It was the discovery of rich copper deposits, first at Kapunda in 1842 and then the more significant discovery at Burra Burra in 1845, which was to save the colony from financial disaster and establish it on the road to prosperity. Burra Burra was Australia's first great mine and at the time it was one of the largest and richest in the world, producing nearly 5% of the total world copper output.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)121-129
Number of pages9
JournalMineralogical Record
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1994
Externally publishedYes


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