We have 4 flumes capable of holding about 100 people. Two of the flumes have full coverage clear pvc roofing that keeps you covered while you search for treasures. We also have a Handicap mining station under cover. Our mining area has a large area to dig so get out your prospector's hat and try your luck!
We have a newly renovated "mine shack" to help keep you comfortable during your stay at Mason's Mine. There is a dressing room to change in and out of dirty clothes. We sell water, soda, snacks, small meal items, canned goods, souvenirs, rock specimens and wood for fires. If you forgot it in town, check with us! Unfortunately at this time we cannot offer WiFi, because of the lack of bandwidth with a satellite system.
Presently Mason's is only available for primitive campers. There is now running water at the mine shack. We offer 9 serene camping spots with fire pits in one of the quietest places you will ever stay. Remember to call ahead if you're camping and coming in after 5 PM.
The cool refreshing waters of the Burningtown Creek run right between the mine shack and the digging area. The sound is very relaxing while washing away dirt from your treasures at the flumes.
History of the Mine
The original discovery of sapphires and rubies at the Raby Mine (which is now known as Mason's Mine) is not known. However, the American Mining and Prospecting Company of New York originally prospected the mine somewhere in the 1895 period for gems. In 1897 James Raby bought the property and by 1905 the publication of Corundum and Peridotites of Western NC mentions the Raby Mine. The mine continued to operate till 1928 when a shaft collapsed. After that the mine was closed down for 14 years.
In 1942 the Mason family bought the property and soon started leasing the property to mineral collectors. By 1958 they started to operate the mine as a tourist mine. The current ownership by the Klatt family began in 2011.
The Burningtown valley has lots of history, and at Mason's Mine we try to keep the history preserved so all can learn about our colorful history. See our original 1880's wagon and real horseshoes found in the area from travelers long past. You can regularly find genuine indian arrowheads in the fields around the mine. Even the mine itself has been in operation around 120 years since its discovery as the Raby prospect.
Archaic points (7000 years bp) found on the mine property.
1800's wagon road in campground area. It follows the old Burningtown Trail which was a Cherokee trade path.
Hiking and Adventures
At Mason's Mine you are just 2 miles from the Appalachian trail, and most of the land surrounding is national forest. Bring a picnic and stay a day and see what all Masons Mine has to offer!
Accommodations, Places to Eat, and Other Attractions in the Franklin, NC area.
In addition to our campground, the Appalachian Trail, and the beautiful Burningtown scenery the rest of the Franklin area has great motels, museums, restaurants, and places to visit.