History[edit | edit source]
Disneyland Paris[edit | edit source]
The Big Thunder Mining Company was established by Henry Ravenswood around 1849 in conjunction with the establishment of the town of Thunder Mesa. Located on an island, Big Thunder Mountain contained a rich vein of gold, but according to local tribes, the mountain was the roost of the legendary Thunderbird, who would create earthquakes with a flap of its powerful wings.
The mining operation was profitable for Ravenswood and his family, but his greed and desire for control would spell his downfall. Paranoia of workers taking more of their own share of the gold coming out of the mountain, increased incidents, and his daughter Melanie becoming infatuated with a mine worker named Jake with plans to leave town after the wedding all weighed heavily on his mind. In 1860, disaster finally struck when a powerful earthquake struck Thunder Mesa, destroying much of the mine works, collapsing sections of the town into what is now Phantom Canyon, and killing Henry.
The town's misfortune would be followed by the disappearance of Melanie's groom at the hands of a mysterious Phantom, believed by many to be Henry's restless spirit. Melanie would spend the rest of her days in Ravenswood Manor waiting for a wedding that would never come, with the house becoming known as Phantom Manor. Mining operations at Big Thunder Mountain continued, but at a much lessened pace then its glory days.
Disneyland & Magic Kingdom[edit | edit source]
Established on Sept. 23, 1848 by Barnabas T. Bullion, the Big Thunder Mining Company operates in the Western River Valley of Arizona at Thunder Mesa and Big Thunder Mountain, with offices near the small boom-town of Tumbleweed and Rainbow Ridge.
However, the mining operations at Big Thunder Mountain have consistently run into problems with mysterious supernatural forces, which local Native tribes describe as being the work of the spirits of the mountain guarding the gold within. S.E.A. President Jason Chandler, who has provided drilling equipment for the mining operation, and Museum of the Weird representative and Adventurers Club member Madame Zarkov, have advised against the continued mining operations at Big Thunder.
Members[edit | edit source]
|Barnabas T. Bullion||Barnabas T. Bullion was the president of the Big Thunder Mining Company following Henry Ravenswood. He was a member of the wealthy Bullion mining-family and believed that the gold of Big Thunder was his birthright. He was also a member of the Society of Explorers and Adventurers who used said connection to further his mining efforts in the latter-half of the 19th century.||Big Thunder Mountain Railroad (Magic Kingdom and Disneyland)|
|Costas A. Lott||Manager of the BT Bullion Company Store|
|G. Willikers||The corrupt foreman of the Big Thunder Mining Company under Barnabas T. Bullion.||Big Thunder Mountain Railroad (Magic Kingdom)|
|Henry Ravenswood (1795-1860)||Henry Ravenswood was the founder of the Big Thunder Mining Company who first, "Discovered" gold in Big Thunder Mountain. Below his esteemed facade however he was a psychotic criminal who murdered many people in his life and kept his daughter Mélanie locked away from society. He was killed in 1860 by the earthquake caused by the spirit of Big Thunder.||Phantom Manor
|Ignatius "Iggy" Knight||Ignatius "Iggy" Knight was an explosives manufacturer during the early days of the Big Thunder Mining Company. He made a home for himself in Thunder Mesa where he became a suitor for Mélanie Ravenswood, the daughter of company president Henry Ravenswood. As punishment for this action, Henry arranged for Iggy's murder in the caverns of Big Thunder Mountain which he ironically lined with explosives.||Phantom Manor|
|Jake||Jake was foreman of the Big Thunder Mining Company under Henry Ravenswood. Around 1860 he too would become a suitor for town-belle Mélanie Ravenswood and planned to leave Thunder Mesa with her. Henry's objections would be cut short by his untimely death in the earthquake of 1860 leaving Jake and Mélanie to be wed in Ravenswood Manor. Before the ceremony however, Henry's ghost lured Jake to the rafters of the mansion where he was violently murdered with a noose.||Phantom Manor|
|Jason Chandler||Jason Chandler was a gifted inventor who following 1880 began supplying the Big Thunder Mining Company with advanced, steam-powered technology for their mining operations. He was also the president of the Society of Explorers and Adventurers as-well as a close friend of Barnabas T. Bullion or, "Barney" as he called him.|
|Liddy Stockley||A proprietress||The Apple Dumpling Gang
|Old Prospector||A prospector from Rainbow Ridge who worked as a prospector before the Big Thunder Mining Company came to town. He later oversaw the boarding of Big Thunder Mountain Railroad's haunted railways.||Mine Train Through Nature's Wonderland|
Appearances[edit | edit source]
Big Thunder Mountain Railroad[edit | edit source]
The Big Thunder Mining Company is the primary entity behind this attraction.
Phantom Manor[edit | edit source]
The master of Phantom Manor is the undead spirit of Henry Ravenswood, the founder and original owner of the Big Thunder Mining Company. The mansion itself was built from the wealth acquired through the Big Thunder Mining Company. The Big Thunder Mining Company was also referenced in the story behind the 2018-2019 refurbishment and frequently referenced in publicity for it.
Connections[edit | edit source]
In the original (retconned) backstory for Discovery Bay, inventor Jason Chandler would have been an employee of the Big Thunder Mining Company who struck gold and founded Discovery Bay after faking his own death.
A bird-cage within the Tumbleweed headquarters of the Big Thunder Mining Company reads, "Rosita" while being empty. This was done as an allusion to Rosita and her absence in the Tiki Room though it is unknown if this is intended to be a lore-connection to Rosita or simply an easter-egg.
Trivia[edit | edit source]
- Ravenswood is not the only man cited as the owner of the mines within Big Thunder Mountain. With the 2013 interactive queue at the Magic Kingdom, the owner of the Big Thunder Mining Company was Barnabas T. Bullion. Certain Disney Parks story officials have claimed behind-the-scenes that Disneyland Paris' Frontierland is not cannon, however the evidence in virtually every version of Big Thunder speaks to the contrary, especially as Thunder Mesa exists within the Society of Explorers and Adventurers universe. However, some fans have speculated that they were owners at different points in time. This coming from how Big Thunder Mountain is canonically set during the 1880s while Henry only ran the company from its founding in 1849 to his death in1860 leaving a 40 year gap where Bullion could have heard of the mountain's legendary treasure and come into ownership of the lands/company. In addition to this a portrait of the mountain in Walt Disney World's queue for the ride shows a Big Thunder Mountain range with the form of Disneyland Paris' mountain in the background, making it possible that Thunder Mesa and Rainbow Ridge were towns on different sides of the mountain.