Portrait of the family behind America's 'most significant heavy rare earth deposit'

Bloomberg looks at the family behind Bokan Mountain, America's "most significant heavy rare earth deposit." The Bokan is located on an island in the south part of the Alaskan Panhandle. Ucore bought the claim from Bob Dotson and his fractious family, and the company is now trying to develop it.

Mining crews came and went, but they finally abandoned Ross-Adams and let the claims expire. Dotson’s site, however, remained untouched. For a half-century, between weeks at sea as a ferryboat pilot, he worked on Bokan, trying to gather enough data to attract investors. Dotson dug trenches with Irene, and later his son, Ray, and two daughters, Mary and Susie. The children grew up among the rocks. “They used to catch salamanders. They thought there were baby alligators,” Dotson said.