The Queensland State Archives has released a rare video showing Mount Isa as it was in 1960 as well as other inland places transformed by mining.
The 17-minute video called Mines of the Outback was originally produced by the Department of Education to document mining activities across the arid regions of Australia, and Mount Isa features prominently.
It begins by talking about how John Campbell Miles found the first lead ore in the region in 1923.
"Today (1960) Mount Isa is the largest underground mine in Australia," the video said.
The video showed examples of how Mount Isa Mines operated at that time.
"The first crushing takes place underground where the rocks are reduced to under six inches in diameter," it said.
"The ore is hauled to the surface in skips each carrying 12 tons, and delivered by conveyor belt to the crude ore bins which hold up to 3500 tons."
The video follows the process to zinc concentrates shipped to Townsville to be sent overseas.
As as looking at the mines there is footage of the then new Mica Creek power station, "the first open power station to be built in Australia" and the "new picturesque Leichardt River dam, 12 miles down from Mount Isa", now known as Lake Moondarra.
There is also a segment on housing and the new Olympic-sized swimming pool in Kruttschnitt Park.
Around the eight-minute mark the focus changes to Mary Kathleen Uranium Mine, whose rich ore was found just six years earlier and then contained a township of one thousand people, half way between Mount Isa and Cloncurry.
It shows the operation plus footage of Lake Corrella, its water supply.
The focus then moves to Tennant Creek and its goldmines, followed by the Rum Jungle uranium mine and moves to Western Australia firstly at Port Hedland which then was a major manganese and asbestos port (before the iron ore boom) and finishing at Kalgoorlie-Boulder goldfields.
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