During the period from 1880 to 1896, lead and silver replaced gold as the main minerals mined in the Oquirrh district. At that time hardly anyone thought that Utah was destined to become famous for its copper. The red mineral was considered inferior and unable to be mined in Utah. It was not until the turn of the century and the dawn of the electrical age that copper began to be taken from the Oquirrhs.
Samuel Newhouse initiated copper mining in 1896 when he shipped out the first copper sulfides from the Highland Boy Mine. Another person who had seen the possibilities of the low-grade copper deposits was Colonel Enos Wall. With no competition at all, he bought up and consolidated old claims. People scoffed at his acquisitions and called them "Wall's Rocks." Wall obtained the financial backing of Captain Joseph R. Delamar, who hired two young mining engineers, Daniel C. Jackling and Robert Gemmell, to examine his newly purchased property. They believed that the low-grade ore could be financially profitable if it was mined in large quantities, using the open-pit mining process. Believing the skeptics who claimed the concept was too radical, Delamar gave up his options on Wall's property. Jackling picked up these options, however, and by 1903 had secured options on 80 percent of Wall's property. With additional financial backing, in 1903 he formed the Utah Copper Company, which later was merged with the Kennecott Copper Corporation. Jackling has rightly been called the "Father of Utah Copper Mining."