Mineral, Washington

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Mineral, Washington
Downtown Mineral
Downtown Mineral
Mineral is located in Washington (state)
Mineral is located in the United States
Coordinates: 46°43′01″N 122°10′51″W / 46.71694°N 122.18083°W / 46.71694; -122.18083Coordinates: 46°43′01″N 122°10′51″W / 46.71694°N 122.18083°W / 46.71694; -122.18083
CountryUnited States
 • Total0.66 sq mi (1.72 km2)
 • Land0.66 sq mi (1.72 km2)
 • Water0.0 sq mi (0.0 km2)
1,470 ft (448 m)
 • Total202
 • Density304/sq mi (117.2/km2)
Time zoneUTC-8 (Pacific (PST))
 • Summer (DST)UTC-7 (PDT)
ZIP code
Area code(s)360
FIPS code53-46090
GNIS feature ID1523205[3]

Mineral is an unincorporated community and census-designated place (CDP) in Lewis County, Washington,[4] on State Route 7 near the Pierce/Lewis county line. Mineral originally began as a logging camp and mining town. Prospectors searching the area for gold instead found coal and arsenic. By the early 1920s, the mines closed, and with a devastating fire to the town's largest sawmill, Mineral began to turn to tourism as its main industry, primarily through recreational fishing on Mineral Lake.[5]

The Mineral Log Lodge, built in 1906, was listed to the National Register of Historic Places in 1975.[6]


The town was founded no later than 1897 on the shore of Mineral Lake, adopting the name from the lake and the veins of ruby of arsenic in the region. The area would be referred to as Mineral City and Mineral Creek in its early days.[7][5] The lake was once known as "Goldsboro Lake".[8]

Primarily a timber community, arsenic mines would open and the population peaked at 1,000 residents by the 1920s, with a flourishing downtown district. However, mining efforts would cease due to more efficient methods being available to obtain the mineral, and the largest mill, owned by the Mineral Lake Lumber Company, would be destroyed by fire in 1922 and never rebuilt. The town would shrink in size and would become a "bedroom community".[5][9]

Over 500 acres were purchased by the YMCA of Greater Seattle in 2021, with support from the Nisqually Indian Tribe, to create a campground north of Mineral on the lake. Future plans may include acquisition of up to 1600 more acres in several phases over the coming decades.[10][11]


Mineral is in northeastern Lewis County, 3 miles (5 km) south of the Pierce County line. The community sits at the southern end of Mineral Lake, 4 miles (6 km) south of Elbe and 12 miles (19 km) north of Morton. It is 1.5 miles (2.4 km) east of State Route 7.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the Mineral CDP has an area of 0.66 square miles (1.7 km2), all of it recorded as land.[1] Water from Mineral Lake flows north down Mineral Creek to the Nisqually River, which reaches Puget Sound northeast of Olympia.

Parks and recreation[edit]

Mineral Log Lodge

Mineral affords views of Mount Rainier. Mineral is most noted as a fishing destination. The lake is stocked yearly with rainbow trout and other fish species. On the opening weekend of Washington's fishing season, the town more than triples in population due to the influx of anglers. The local catch-phrase is "Mineral Lake, home of the 10 pound trout."[12][13]

Mineral is the location where one of the tallest specimens of Douglas fir was recorded, measuring at approximately 120 meters (390 ft) high.

Mineral is also near the location of the famous Kenneth Arnold UFO sighting in 1947.


This region experiences warm (but not hot) and dry summers, with no average monthly temperatures above 71.6 °F. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Mineral has a warm-summer Mediterranean climate, abbreviated "Csb" on climate maps.[14]


The Mineral Elementary School, opened in 1944 as a replacement for a previous school that burned down, closed in 2003.[15] Students in the community are overseen by the Morton School District.[16]

Government and politics[edit]


Mineral leans heavily towards the Republican Party and Conservatism.

The results for the 2020 U.S. Presidential Election for the Mineral voting district were as follows:[17]


Line notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b "2020 U.S. Gazetteer Files –Washington". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved March 4, 2021.
  2. ^ "Total Population: 2010 Census DEC Summary File 1 (P1), Mineral CDP, Washington". data.census.gov. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved March 4, 2021.
  3. ^ "Mount Rainier". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey. Retrieved 2008-10-15.
  4. ^ "Mineral". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey.
  5. ^ a b c Emerson, Amy (April 6, 2002). "Booming log town to bedroom community". The Chronicle. pp. A1, A6. Retrieved 15 December 2021.
  6. ^ "National status for lodge". The Daily Chronicle. April 19, 1975. p. 17. Retrieved 22 July 2021.
  7. ^ "Mineral Nuggets". The Chehalis Bee. Vol. 13, no. 40. February 26, 1897. p. 1. Retrieved 15 December 2021.
  8. ^ Meany, Edmond S. (1923). Origin of Washington geographic names. Seattle: University of Washington Press. p. 167.
  9. ^ "Not Rebuild Mill". The Chehalis Bee-Nugget. Vol. 40, no. 6. July 14, 1922. p. 2. Retrieved 15 December 2021.
  10. ^ The Chronicle Staff (September 24, 2021). "YMCA Officially Acquires 500 Acres at Mineral Lake". The Chronicle. Retrieved 15 December 2021.
  11. ^ Gardner, Jackson (May 1, 2020). "Locals Uneasy About YMCA of Greater Seattle's Proposed Campsite on Mineral Lake". The Chronicle. Retrieved 15 December 2021.
  12. ^ Mason, Kimberly (April 26, 2010). "Mineral Lake 'Home of the 10-Pound Trout' Opens". The Chronicle. Retrieved 15 December 2021.
  13. ^ Mohney, Russ (April 14, 2000). "Mineral Lake ready for season opener". The Chronicle. p. C1. Retrieved 15 December 2021.
  14. ^ Climate Summary for Mineral, Washington
  15. ^ Latson, Jennifer (November 27, 2003). "Mineral Elementary closes its doors". The Chronicle. Retrieved 15 December 2021.
  16. ^ Vander Stoep, Isabel (November 22, 2021). "Remote Mineral School Residency Program Continues to See Diverse Talent". The Chronicle. Retrieved 15 December 2021.
  17. ^ "Lewis County 2020 Election". Results.Vote.WA. Results.Vote.WA. Retrieved July 21, 2021.

External links[edit]