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Thomas Arthur Rickard


1990 Inductee from Mining's Past

Thomas Arthur Rickard had a significant influence on the mining industry through his editorship of the three principal mining journals of the English-speaking world from 1903 to 1929 and through his popular hooks on the techniques, history and romance of mining. In 1937, he wrote in the preface to his autobiography. “A man is not old, so long as he is eager to learn and ready to express an opinion.”

He was born in Italy to an English family of examining mining engineers and was educated first in Czarist Russia and then at Queen’s College in Taunton. England. He matriculated at the University of London in 1881 and graduated from the Royal School of Mines in London in 1885. He came to Colorado as a surveyor and assayer in 1885, and was a mine manager in California from 1887-1889 He was the state geologist of Colorado from 1895-1901. Throughout his career, but especially intensively until his marriage in 1898, he worked as a consulting mining engineer and traveled from his home base in Denver to examine mines in Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Alaska, Africa, Cyprus, Greece, Italy, France, Mexico, and Spain.

Mr. Rickard was editor of The Engineering and Mining Journal from 1903-1905 and 1922-1929, of Mining and Scientific Press of San Francisco from 1906-1909 and 1915-1922, and of The Mining Magazine of London from 1909-1915. He also was a lecturer in mining geology at Harvard University from 1912-1915 and contributed numerous articles to scientific journals. Mr. Rickard wrote more than a dozen books about mining, including Man and Metals (1932), A History of American Mining (1932), Retrospect (1937), and The Romance of Mining (1944). He was honored with a Sc.D. from Colorado School of Mines in 1927 and with the „Gold Medal‟ from the Institution of Mining and Metallurgy of London in 1922. The copper telluride mineral, rickardite, was named in his honor.

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