University of Arizona

                                             Special Collections will be closed December 20, 2023 through January 1, 2024 in observance of the University Holiday break.

Richmond Jones Papers


Richmond Jones, Jr. (1833-1861) was a mining engineer hired by Welcome B. Sayles (1812-1862) of the Sopori Land and Mining Company and the Arizona Land and Mining Company of Providence Rhode Island to survey the Sopori Rancho boundary in the Arizona Territory. Both the Sopori Land and Mining Company and the Arizona Land and Mining Company were incorporated in Providence Rhode Island in 1859 by Sayles with firearms manufacturer Samuel Colt (1814-1862) as a major stockholder. Although the Sopori Company was financed mainly out of Providence, Cincinnati financiers Charles Debrille Poston (1825-1902) and Samuel Peter Heintzleman (1805-1880) founders of the Sonora Exploration and Mining Company, were also involved. Jones' diaries help to tie together the sometimes complicated interactions of the companies. When the Civil War began in 1861 United States troops were withdrawn from the territory of Arizona and many mines closed due to increased raiding by Apaches. As the attacks increased Jones diary entries become less frequent until they cease altogether in July 1861 when Jones was killed in an Apache raid while attempting to return to Tucson Arizona.

Diary and Notebooks, 1859-1861. This collection includes materials which document the travels and surveys of Richmond Jones (1833-1861) while working for the Sopori Land and Mining Company in the Santa Cruz Valley of Arizona. The diary describes his journey from Rhode Island to Tucson, Arizona and offer insights on individuals and mining activities in southern Arizona until his sudden death at the hands of Apaches, in the field, in 1861. Includes account books, letters, survey books and documents, as well as a report on the Sopori and San Xavier mines by mining engineer Raphael Pumpelly (1837-1923) who was in charge of the Santa Rita Mine from 1860-1861.