Stephen Ferry - Thirteen-year-old Tin Miner, Santa Rita Mine Shaft, Bolivia, 1992
For centuries Bolivia’s Potosí mountain has been called the “mountain that eats men” because so many miners, including children, have lost their lives there. Today, thousands of children work in and around Bolivia’s mines, searching for trace amounts of silver and tin.
“For over two hundred years, the Spanish colonizers forced more than three million Quechua Indians to work in Potosí’s Cerro Rico (Rich Mountain), supplying nearly half of the world’s production of silver. Hundreds of thousands of miners have died there from disease, accidents, and brutality. Today, men are compelled to repeat the past, working themselves to death in the very mountain that was the tomb of their ancestors.”