From RHJunior Comics Wiki
Silver Springs was once a thriving farming village, one of the Seven Villages, in fact.
Its acidic soil, lavishly irrigated, brought forth abundant crops of grapes, cherries, and other acidophilic fruits.
The villagers began showing signs of bauxite poisoning. The creek and the ground were both contaminated with it. Residents couldn't sell or even give away their land. Eventually, they just boarded up their homes and left.
Most of the families currently living in Freeman Downs moved there after Silver Springs collapsed. Were it not for Quentyn of Ridgedale, they would have had no place to go, but he had left instructions with his daughter, who sold the land to the evicted families for a pittance.
With the help of Silver Creek, Limited, a young biomancer named Arlen developed a plant that will extract bauxite from the soil, turning it into usable products such as metal bauxite (aluminum), sapphires and rubies (both of which are based on aluminum oxides).