American west states have sites former towns, now deserted, that popped up and abandoned when conditions changed. Called “Ghosttowns”, Humberstone, named in honor of the 1872 founder, James Thomas Humberstone, is the Chilean version. It is easy to feel old when you were, as I was, five years old when this place became a ghost in 1958.
Forty seven (47) years later, July 17, 2005, the name Humberstone was inscribed in the book of World Heritage sites, the site degraded by years of scavenging by humans and attack by the elements.
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We experienced the work of years that day,February 2016. Here is an overview of saltpeter mining and refining processes, in a detailed painting…..
….the physical layout…
…..and historical timeline.
Humberstone and Santa Laura Saltpeter Works World Heritage page
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