The mining site of Masua was already known at the end of the seventeenth century, and this is testified by the presence of excavations, tunnels and stoves in the limestone for the search of lead and silver. In the modern age the first searches were carried out by a priest, Don Carlo Negretti, in 1813. In 1857 the research permit passed to Mr. P. Vacatello who gave it to the Società Anonima delle Miniere di Montesanto in 1863.
In 1862 Eng. A. Bonacossa built a small foundry downstream of the tunnels, the ancient excavations, now unproductive, were abandoned and the cultivation of new heaps of galena and calamine was started. This mineral was sorted and then sent to sieves to obtain lead. The remaining mixes were sent to the foundry. The foundry could treat 6000 tons. of 30% lead ore and had 6 wind ovens powered by an 8 HP steam engine. The foundry operated until 1890 producing over 25,000 tons. lead. The first houses of the workers were built around this foundry, a mechanical washing machine was also built and a pier was built for the loading of the mineral. At the end of the 19th century, the Masua mine was one of the most important on the island, with over 700 employees working in the Parodi, Podestà and Calligaris shipyards. The mining village located on the steep slope of Punta Cortis had a school, a hospital, a church, laboratories and other services.
In 1911 the concessions of the Montesanto company passed to the Anonima Miniere di Lanusei company (made up of Ligurian entrepreneurs) which was subsequently absorbed by the Vieille Montagne company. In 1915 Italy entered the war and the First World War forced production to stop.
In this period, 40 meters of quay were built in the port of Masua, which supported concrete pillars, joined at the top by sturdy iron beams, on which an electric lift ran (Ceretti and Tanfani). This electric lift grabbed the pins and lifted the crates loaded with mineral (1 ton.), And then emptied them into the hatches of the sailing boats bound for Carloforte.
In the 1920s the Montesanto Company was forced to sell the concession to the Anonymous Company of the Lanusei mines.