Steep wooded valleys mean tough biking in the lead mining region. The site of the nation's first great mineral rush in 1827, it was once the most populous part of the state. Early miners were called "badgers" for living in shacks over hillside-holes. Thousands of small, abandoned surface mines dot the ridges and valleys. Pioneer priest Father Samuel Mazzuchelli (Maz-oo-kely) built area churches and named many of Shullsburg's streets for Biblical virtues to appeal to the miner's better nature. You may be at the corner of Charity and Friendship, but riding a bike is no Easy Street in lead mining country.
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