Travelogue Spring Break 2011, Day 3: Valencia Mine Guanajuato

 

The Valenciana mines in Guanajuato are old–1500s. They are still active, mining silver, gold, copper, and other minerals. We walked down into one of the tunnels, and heard about the history of mining, from its roots in slavery to the present day. One Spaniard from the southern Valencia region moved to the new world and opened the mines in this region. He prayed to San Cayetano that he would find gold, and that if he did, he would build the saint a temple. Well, he sure did strike it rich! The three altars in this church are completely covered in four layers of gold plate. It’s an absolutely beautiful church. The diocese threatened the “Conde” that if he built the other tower and the central dome, they would disassemble the entire church, as it would compete with the existing cathedral downtown.