Tag Archives: mines

McLaren’s Phosphate Mine — BurgessWood Housing– Anglo Canadian Phosphate Company

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McLaren’s Phosphate Mine — BurgessWood Housing– Anglo Canadian Phosphate Company
The Gazette
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
10 Jan 1881, Mon  •  Page 1

In addition to his holdings in Virginia, Peter McLaren also had mining interests closer to home. In 1901 he acquired mines at North Burgess Township from the Anglo Canadian Phosphate Company which had abandoned work on the property a decade earlier when the market price of phosphates had fallen to unprofitable levels. Open trench pits had
originally been dug for extracting apatite49, but McLaren worked them for mica50. In 1910 he made the property and mines a wedding gift to his son William (1880-1932) and daughter-in-law Anna Gemmell McLaren (1884-1975). The mica mine went out of production again in 1923, but William and Anna continued to live on the property. Today the site is occupied by the BurgessWood housing development. Perth Historical Society

Phosphate rock is processed to produce phosphorous, which is one of the three main nutrients most commonly used in fertilizers (the other two are nitrogen and potassium). Phosphate can also be turned into phosphoric acid, which is used in everything from food and cosmetics to animal feed and electronics

Mining in BurgessWoodclick here
BurgessWood, a community on the northwest shore of Otty Lake, was once the site of active
apatite and mica mines. The following is excerpted, with permission, from “BurgessWood:
Evolution of a Community,” published by the BurgessWood Property Owners’ Association in
2011.


By the year of Confederation, 1867, Perth was a well-established town. But the north shore of
Otty Lake likely remained at least partly virgin forest, old-growth trees towering above the land.
Native people continued to camp sometimes around the lake, where they hunted and fished for
bass, perch, and pike. Logging had begun on nearby land owned by Perth businessmen, and
small-scale mining activities were starting up.


That same year, twenty-year-old Isaac Kenyon arrived at Otty Lake from Manchester, England.
Isaac’s father, Hartley Kenyon, owned shares in the mining operations in North Burgess (now
Tay Valley) township near Otty Lake. Isaac arrived to look into the prospects for his father’s
investment. Isaac Kenyon found work as an analyst for the mining company, operating a
geological laboratory. He boarded just down the road from the mine with the William Watts
family on what is now the Norris property on Otty Lake Sideroad.


The mining operation where young Isaac Kenyon worked extracted two minerals: apatite, a type
of phosphate used in making fertilizer; and mica, used in a variety of industrial applications, such
as electrical insulation and isinglass for oven doors. These two minerals tend to be found
together, along with others such as feldspar and quartzite.
The first recorded commercial shipment of apatite in Canada came from North Burgess
township. Over the years between the 1860s and 1920s, a series of operators leased or owned the
mineral rights on Lots 4, 5, and 6 of Concession 8 in North Burgess, in and around present-day
BurgessWood.


The mines were of the open pit type—narrow trenches that were normally shallow but could
occasionally run as deep as 100 feet. The mineral output was usually destined for export to either
Germany or Great Britain. The product was transported by scow from a bay on the north shore of
Otty Lake, now called Apatite Bay. From there it travelled to the lake’s south shore, then by
wagon or sleigh to Rideau Ferry, whence it was shipped to Montreal via the Rideau Canal.
Of the various operators, the Anglo-Canadian Phosphate Company maintained the largest
operation, employing about 20 miners on average. Eventually mica would overtake apatite as the
area’s main product.


In 1901, Senator Peter McLaren acquired the mining property lying within present-day
BurgessWood. The property had been idle for 10 years after the Anglo-Canadian Phosphate
Company abandoned it, because of a drop in market prices. Senator McLaren resumed mining
for mica and apatite.


Peter McLaren’s son, William, and William’s wife, Anna Gemmell McLaren, moved there after
their marriage in 1910 to assume responsibility for operating the mines. Many pits had originally
been opened for extracting apatite, but the main pit, a narrow open-cut trench 75 feet deep and
only 10 feet wide, was now being worked for mica.


The mining property included a large frame boarding house with bunks and a communal dining
room for the miners. There were also stables for the horses used in the mining work, and a
culling shed for trimming the mica by hand into commercially usable sheets. The culling shed
was located on what is now 1031 McLaren Road. The place was deserted every winter until the
miners came back to work in the spring.


Just to the west of the miners’ boarding house, the McLarens built a simple white frame home
and named it Forest Lodge. Eventually the McLarens added another log dwelling to the property
now identified as 1049 McLaren Road. Embedded in a hillside was a stone storehouse used to
keep food and possibly dynamite for the mining operations. Nearby were a stone drinking trough
for horses, a well, and a pump. These latter artifacts, as well as the storehouse, can still be seen at
present-day 1062 McLaren Road.


The mining operations came to an end in 1923, as the market for its product petered out.
While current-day volunteers were blazing hiking trails in the area, they discovered remnants of
the mica operations left behind by miners nearly a century ago. Alongside a long deep trench,
they found remains of barrels and buckets, with wooden staves and rusted iron rings partially
intact. There was also a piece of iron driven into a tree, part of a winch system for raising
buckets of mica out of the pit. These evocative artifacts of another era can still be seen on the
trail.


As well, an ore wagon was found on the old McLaren property in present-day BurgessWood,
near the couple’s two houses and the miners’ bunkhouse. As the developer of BurgessWood, Dr.
Grover Lightford donated the wagon to the Silver Queen mine at Murphy’s Point Provincial
Park, and members of the BurgessWood maintenance committee volunteered to restore it.

Similar mines in Lanark County

Otty Lake Mine
Location: Lot l, concession VIII, North Burgess township,
Lanark county.
Minerals Present: Apatite, mica, scapolite, pyrite, marcasite
Development: The mine was worked in 1871 by Edward Schultze,
in 1873 by Messrs. Morris and Griffin and in
1908 to 1910 by R. Mcconnell. The main opening
is 100 feet long, 15 feet wide and about 40 feet
deep.

Geology: Mica and apatite occur in pink calcite at the contact
of dark pyroxenite and dark biotite gneiss. The
mica crystals are badly crushed.
References: de Schmid (1912, p. 176); Spence (1920, p. 55)

Lot 2, Concession VIII
Location: Lot 2, concession VIII, North Burgess township,
Lanark county
.
Minerals Present: Apatite, mica, calcite, scapolite, wilsonite,
Development: This phosphate mine is reputed to be the first
worked in Canada having been opened in 1855. It
was worked in 1870 by R. Matheson of Perth who
opened a pit 60 feet long and 15 feet deep. The
property was acquired by Kent Brothers in 1907
and the largest pit was 60 feet long, 25 feet
wide and 25 feet deep.
Geology: Mica and apatite occur irregularly in pockets in
leads in light grey pyroxenite.
Reference: Spence (1920, p. 55).


Lot 3, Concession VIII
Location: Lot 3, concession VIII, North Burgess township,
Lanark county.

Minerals Present: Apatite, mica.
Development: Apatite was mined on this lot in 1870 from an
8-foot vein by Messrs. Ritchie and Jackson of
Belfast. A shaft was sunk to 30 feet on a 3-
foot vein and drifting was carried out in both
directions on the vein. Several smaller pits
were opened and about 1000 tons of apatite is
said to have been mined. The mine was worked
in 1908 by Kent Brothers of Kingston for mica.

Geology: The mica-apatite veins strike northwest and southeast and average 2 feet in width. Narrow bands of
pyroxenite separate the veins from the country rock
quartz-syenite.
References: de Schmid (1912, p. 178); Spence (1920, p. 56).

Read-Otty Lake Settlement
Most of the following was taken from “A History of Otty Lake” by David E. Code, 2006. CLICK HERE
The Gazette
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
22 Jun 1883, Fri  •  Page 1
The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
22 Feb 1887, Tue  •  Page 3
The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
22 Sep 1970, Tue  •  Page 11

Pioneer Mica Miners

25 years ago the late Miss Lillian Smith of Perth donated a now century old six ledger book to the Perth Museum.  The ledger was originally part of the American Mica Mining Company operating in North Burgess Township during 1864-65.  This pay roll lists the names of many well known district families.  To say nothing of showing the differences in wages paid miners 100 years ago and today.

The first name entered in the ledger is that of Thomas Stapleton, a blaster.  For the week ending September 24, 1864, Thomas received $5 for four days work at $1.25 per day.  Thomas McPharland, pitman, was paid $4.80 for a six day stint at 80 cents a day.  John McPharland, a dresser, worked one day that week for 30 cents.  For the week ending October 1, Owen Powers, foreman, was reimbursed to the tune of $7.50 ($1.25 per day).  G.N. Randall, superintendent of the cutting and directing, was paid $3.21 per day, definitely “top brass” earnings.  But he was still far from the class of engineer F. Poole (F. Poole and Associates) whose salary was $6 per day.  A. Castle, described as a “superintendent” was paid $1 per day and granted $8.35 in “expenses” from Montreal to the mines.  It may be that Mr. Castle was some sort of supervisor whose duties were dignified with a fine sounding title somewhat like discreetly referring to today’s garbage men as “sanitary engineers”.

One hundred years ago the company paid out an average of $219 per week in wages and salaries for 104 days work and a work day was ten hours long.  This means that the hourly rates were as follows:  blaster, twelve and a half cents; pitman, eight cents; dresser, three cents; foreman, twelve and a half cents; superintendent of cutting and dressing, thirty two cents; engineer, sixty cents.

In the interests of genealogy, a reproduction of the names in the list on the ledger is given:

Foremen:  Owen Powers and Peter Powers

Balster:  Bernard Berns

Pitmen:  Pat White, Peter White, Michael McPharland (#1), Michael McPharland (#2), Thomas McPharland, Francis McPharland, Lawrence Russell, Thomas Stapleton, Thomas Darcy, Michael Darcy, Owen McCann, Michael Carrens, John McNamee, T. Queen, Alexander Parks, Thomas Burns, Arthur Donnelly, Hugh McShane, Hugh Kelly, Michael White, John Ryan, William Whitelaw, James McLade (this could have been McGlade).

Striker:  Peter Martin

Balsters:  John Donnelly, Thomas Donnelly, Pat K. Morgan, Arthur Fagan, Thomas Drennan, Michael Hanley, Joseph Bennett, Henry Miles, Pat Quinn, Lawrence Russell, Owen Loy

Dresser:  John Stapleton

Related Reading

A List of Local Mines


The Greer Gold Mines — Historical Mining Claim Maps

The Life Times and Sinking of Black Donald Mines

Tales from the Mines —Kingdon Mine Part 3

Tales from the Mines —Kingdon Mine Part 2

Kingdon Mine Led Galetta Area from a Boomtown to a Ghost Town

Lost Mines — Clyde Forks Mine

When History Comes to You–A Visit from Middleville

Clyde forks Mine- Dualsport

Deed of Mines? Linda’s Mailbag — Amy De Ridder

Gold Mines and Disappearances

Is there Still Gold on Wellesley Island ?

Did Anyone Find the Lost Barrel of Silver Coins That Lies at the Bottom of the Rideau Canal?

What Happened to the Gold on the Ramsay 7th line?

Gold in Dem Dar Hills of Lanark

So What Happened to the Marble at the Tatlock Mine?

My Daddy was a Miner — was Yours?

The Mysterious Tatlock Mine

The Early Days of Working in the Ramsay Mine — Going Down Down Down

Looking for the Artist of this Carleton Place Painting-The Lime Kiln

A Giant’s Kettle in the Middle of Lanark County

Where Were the Miracle Salt Springs in Pakenham? I Love a Challenge!

Gold Mines and Disappearances

Carleton Place Then and Now–Bridge Street Series–Volume 16– Newman’s Ha

You Can Explore This Haunted Ghost Town For A Creepy Adventure In Ontario

Are you brave enough to visit after dark?

Once-Busy Graphite Mine Site Ottawa Valley “Ghost Town”–One third of the ore was new, coming from the support pillars of solid graphite left in the old workings.
The balance was being reclaimed from old tailings. Newer separation methods were getting values of 60 percent
carbon from what had been considered waste. Some $390,000.00 was earned that year.
The final cave in came on a Sunday afternoon in July, five years ago Jim Bridges had returned to the surface
of the Ross shaft, from an inspection tour of the sump pumps on the 300 foot level. The hoist man was
complaining of the heat, and wanted to swap jobs.
Down behind his general store, Jack Wilson was taking some dinner scraps to his hound, who had been trying
valiantly to make himself heard in Mount St. Patrick! Filling the dog’s dish, he whirled suddenly to the lake
where a mighty roar had begun. As he watched, a giant hole opened in the water, and what looked like Niagara
Falls began to tumble into the crater. CLICK for the rest here…http://www.bytown.net/blackdonaldmines.htm

A List of Local Mines

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A List of Local Mines

I found this yesterday and decided to document it. The Map is here..

Spinel
LocalityLatitudeLongitudeDistanceBearing
Cameron Quarry, Ramsay Township, Lanark County, Ontario, Canada45° 9′ 20″ N76° 13′ 4″ W8.8km (5.4 miles)88.7° (E)
Cedar Hill soapstone occurrence, Pakenham Township, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada45° 16′ 1″ N76° 19′ 39″ W12.6km (7.8 miles)0.7° (N)
Ramsay Mine, Ramsay Township, Lanark County, Ontario, Canada45° 9′ 10″ N76° 9′ 59″ W12.8km (7.9 miles)90.5° (E)
Tatlock Quarry, Lanark County, Ontario, Canada45° 9′ 2″ N76° 29′ 45″ W13.1km (8.1 miles)268.4° (W)
Darling hematite occurrence (Bell’s mine; Eggshell Bay), Darling Township, Lanark County, Ontario, Canada45° 17′ 0″ N76° 30′ 24″ W20.0km (12.4 miles)316.1° (NW)
Playfair Mine (Dalhousie Mine; Lanark Iron Mine), Dalhousie Township, Lanark County, Ontario, Canada44° 58′ 24″ N76° 25′ 44″ W21.5km (13.4 miles)201.3° (SSW)
Currie Barite occurrence, Fitzroy Township, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada45° 19′ 53″ N76° 10′ 48″ W22.9km (14.3 miles)30.6° (NNE)
Ennis Quarry, Bathurst Township, Lanark County, Ontario, Canada44° 56′ 49″ N76° 22′ 41″ W23.3km (14.5 miles)189.5° (S)
Keays Quarry, Bathurst Township, Lanark County, Ontario, Canada44° 56′ 33″ N76° 22′ 49″ W23.8km (14.8 miles)189.7° (S)
Perth quarry, Bathurst Township, Lanark County, Ontario, Canada44° 56′ 22″ N76° 22′ 47″ W24.1km (15.0 miles)189.5° (S)
Radenhurst Mine, Lavant Township, Lanark County, Ontario, Canada45° 10′ 4″ N76° 40′ 18″ W26.9km (16.7 miles)273.4° (W)
Caldwell Mine, Lavant Township, Lanark County, Ontario, Canada45° 10′ 2″ N76° 40′ 19″ W26.9km (16.7 miles)273.3° (W)
Bathurst Quarry, Bathurst Township, Lanark County, Ontario, Canada44° 54′ 47″ N76° 23′ 44″ W27.2km (16.9 miles)191.0° (S)
Blithfield mine (Caldwell mine), Blithfield Township, Renfrew County, Ontario, Canada45° 12′ 47″ N76° 40′ 27″ W27.8km (17.3 miles)283.9° (WNW)
Virgin Lake celestine mine (Dempseys), Bagot Township, Renfrew County, Ontario, Canada45° 15′ 47″ N76° 39′ 47″ W28.8km (17.9 miles)295.0° (WNW)
Perth area, Lanark County, Ontario, Canada44° 53′ 57″ N76° 14′ 53″ W29.0km (18.0 miles)167.3° (SSE)
Foster Quarry, Bathurst Township, Lanark County, Ontario, Canada44° 53′ 57″ N76° 25′ 0″ W29.1km (18.1 miles)193.6° (SSW)
Foley Mine, Bathurst Township, Lanark County, Ontario, Canada44° 53′ 35″ N76° 25′ 10″ W29.8km (18.5 miles)193.8° (SSW)
Galetta area, Fitzroy Township, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada45° 25′ 27″ N76° 15′ 23″ W30.6km (19.0 miles)10.7° (N)
Clyde Forks Mine, Lavant Township, Lanark County, Ontario, Canada45° 7′ 26″ N76° 43′ 33″ W31.3km (19.4 miles)264.0° (W)
Campbell Drive tremolite occurrence, Arnprior area, Renfrew County, Ontario, Canada45° 26′ 0″ N76° 24′ 11″ W31.6km (19.7 miles)349.5° (N)
Humphreys feldspar mine, Huntley Township, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada45° 21′ 30″ N76° 2′ 50″ W31.7km (19.7 miles)44.0° (NE)
Galetta celestine occurrence, Fitzroy Township, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada45° 26′ 8″ N76° 14′ 44″ W32.0km (19.9 miles)11.8° (NNE)
Wilbur Mine, Lavant Township, Lanark County, Ontario, Canada45° 1′ 18″ N76° 41′ 32″ W32.1km (19.9 miles)242.8° (WSW)
High Falls area, Lanark County, Ontario, Canada44° 57′ 12″ N76° 37′ 23″ W32.1km (19.9 miles)226.1° (SW)
Kingdon Mine (Fitzroy Mine; Galetta Mine), Fitzroy Township, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada45° 26′ 25″ N76° 15′ 24″ W32.3km (20.1 miles)10.1° (N)
Stanton Lead occurrence, Fitzroy Township, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada45° 26′ 15″ N76° 13′ 46″ W32.5km (20.2 miles)13.9° (NNE)
Calabogie iron mine, Bagot Township, Renfrew County, Ontario, Canada45° 18′ 20″ N76° 41′ 30″ W33.0km (20.5 miles)300.9° (WNW)
Twenty Six Lake occurrence, Palmerston Township, Frontenac County, Ontario, Canada45° 2′ 12″ N76° 43′ 0″ W33.1km (20.5 miles)247.0° (WSW)
Chamberlain Creek occurrence, Bagot Township, Renfrew County, Ontario, Canada45° 21′ 23″ N76° 38′ 47″ W33.5km (20.8 miles)312.3° (NW)

Nearby features from geonames.org

Search moreFeatureTypeLatitudeLongitudeDistanceBearing
Quig LakeLake45° 9′ 38″ N76° 19′ 1″ W1.2km (0.8 miles)52.3° (NE)
The RiverChannel45° 10′ 0″ N76° 19′ 57″ W1.5km (0.9 miles)349.9° (N)
Sheas CreekStream45° 8′ 25″ N76° 19′ 45″ W1.5km (0.9 miles)179.9° (S)
Taylor LakeLake45° 8′ 36″ N76° 20′ 34″ W1.5km (1.0 miles)222.5° (SW)
Clayton LakeLake45° 10′ 39″ N76° 20′ 44″ W2.9km (1.8 miles)333.9° (NNW)
Union HallPopulated place45° 9′ 38″ N76° 17′ 33″ W3.0km (1.9 miles)75.4° (ENE)
ClaytonArea45° 11′ 0″ N76° 19′ 57″ W3.3km (2.0 miles)355.5° (N)
Bowlands IslandIsland45° 11′ 0″ N76° 19′ 57″ W3.3km (2.0 miles)355.5° (N)
RosettaPopulated place45° 7′ 14″ N76° 20′ 2″ W3.7km (2.3 miles)185.4° (S)
Harding LakeLake45° 6′ 56″ N76° 21′ 57″ W5.1km (3.2 miles)214.2° (SW)

Minerals recorded nearby (within 20 km)

‘Apatite’

Calcite

Chondrodite

Chrysotile

Dolomite

Fluorite

Graphite

Muscovite

Phlogopite

Pyrite

‘Pyroxene Group’

‘Scapolite’

Sphalerite

Spinel

Titanite

‘Tourmaline’

Tremolite

Zircon

Related Reading

The Greer Gold Mines — Historical Mining Claim Maps

The Life Times and Sinking of Black Donald Mines

Tales from the Mines —Kingdon Mine Part 3

Tales from the Mines —Kingdon Mine Part 2

Kingdon Mine Led Galetta Area from a Boomtown to a Ghost Town

Lost Mines — Clyde Forks Mine

When History Comes to You–A Visit from Middleville

Clyde forks Mine- Dualsport

Deed of Mines? Linda’s Mailbag — Amy De Ridder

Gold Mines and Disappearances

Is there Still Gold on Wellesley Island ?

Did Anyone Find the Lost Barrel of Silver Coins That Lies at the Bottom of the Rideau Canal?

What Happened to the Gold on the Ramsay 7th line?

Gold in Dem Dar Hills of Lanark

So What Happened to the Marble at the Tatlock Mine?

My Daddy was a Miner — was Yours?

The Mysterious Tatlock Mine

The Early Days of Working in the Ramsay Mine — Going Down Down Down

Looking for the Artist of this Carleton Place Painting-The Lime Kiln

A Giant’s Kettle in the Middle of Lanark County

Where Were the Miracle Salt Springs in Pakenham? I Love a Challenge!

Gold Mines and Disappearances

Carleton Place Then and Now–Bridge Street Series–Volume 16– Newman’s Ha

You Can Explore This Haunted Ghost Town For A Creepy Adventure In Ontario

Are you brave enough to visit after dark?

The Greer Gold Mines — Historical Mining Claim Maps

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The Greer Gold Mines — Historical Mining Claim Maps
 -
The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
25 Oct 1899, Wed  •  Page 5

This paragraph about the Greer Mines was in the Ottawa Citizen coming from Carleton Place and Almonte. Mines and getting rich quick were hot in those days. Now you can find old historical maps and info by clicking on the link below.

Greer Gold Mines Maps click here

Historical Mining Claim Maps– CLICK HERE

Before Claim Maps were available online, in which current and active claims may be viewed, claims were drawn on linen, paper and, later, Mylar sheets. Despite their age, there continues to be interest in the information provided by these historical mining claim maps.

Recently, the maps were scanned and saved as image files. Maps were assigned file names based on the township or area they covered and, where possible, the year that the map was produced. Image files for the same township or area were combined into a single PDF for that location.

Historical Mining Claim Maps are now available online.

The Life Times and Sinking of Black Donald Mines

Tales from the Mines —Kingdon Mine Part 3

Tales from the Mines —Kingdon Mine Part 2

Kingdon Mine Led Galetta Area from a Boomtown to a Ghost Town

Lost Mines — Clyde Forks Mine

When History Comes to You–A Visit from Middleville

Clyde forks Mine- Dualsport

Deed of Mines? Linda’s Mailbag — Amy De Ridder

Gold Mines and Disappearances

Is there Still Gold on Wellesley Island ?

Did Anyone Find the Lost Barrel of Silver Coins That Lies at the Bottom of the Rideau Canal?

What Happened to the Gold on the Ramsay 7th line?

Gold in Dem Dar Hills of Lanark

So What Happened to the Marble at the Tatlock Mine?

My Daddy was a Miner — was Yours?

The Mysterious Tatlock Mine

The Early Days of Working in the Ramsay Mine — Going Down Down Down

Looking for the Artist of this Carleton Place Painting-The Lime Kiln

A Giant’s Kettle in the Middle of Lanark County

Where Were the Miracle Salt Springs in Pakenham? I Love a Challenge!

Gold Mines and Disappearances

Carleton Place Then and Now–Bridge Street Series–Volume 16– Newman’s Ha

You Can Explore This Haunted Ghost Town For A Creepy Adventure In Ontario

Are you brave enough to visit after dark?

The Life Times and Sinking of Black Donald Mines

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The Life Times and Sinking of Black Donald Mines

Black Donald Mines buried under …eganvilleleader.ca

The once-bustling Renfrew County Village of Black Donald, site of Canada’s most famous graphite mine, has been sentenced to die by drowning. In 1967 the level of the nearby Madawaska River will be raised 150 feet by the new Ontario Hydro Mount a i a Chute dam, then due for completion, and Black Donald will vanish forever.

Terrible loss? No. I’m convinced the place was already dead. Most of the inhabitants fled when the mine was closed years ago. Some dismantled their homes and transported them to new sites, while others simply left everything behind them.

Walking down the main street of Black Donald now is like visiting a ghost town of the old West. Traces of former prosperity are everywhere, yet the pulse of the place has all but ceased. The community Catholic Church, a big steepled frame building, is almost in ruins. Its stain-glass windows are shattered, its pews broken, its altar strewn with fragments of religious statuary.

The Black Donald mine was once the richest flake-graphite mine in North America. While ore containing 10 per cent carbon was considered a good mining grade, Black Donald ore averaged 20 per cent for almost half a century following its discovery in 1894. The mine’s first big setback came in 1938 when, after it was decided that all of the readily – extractable ore had been taken out, the workings were abandoned.

But graphite was suddenly found to be a vital war material is 1942, so Black Donald was re-opened and 50,000,-000 pounds of refined graphite were produced from the workings earlier believed to be exhausted. Although mining continued until 1954 and the mining charter was not actually surrendered until 1962, Ontario Hydro doomed the whole operation with its purchase of the property in 1947 to pave the way for the gigantic Mountain Chute power project.

It would “take between 24 and- 48 hours” for the water to be released at Palmer Rapids to make itself felt at Mountain Chute. There was to be no flash flood and they would let it out at the rate of not more than 1,000 cubic feet per seconds When the Mountain- Chute dam would be sealed off a lake, which would extend a distance, of 20 miles up stream from Mountain Chute to Griffith, on Highway 41 would begin to build up.

Formation of the lake would depend on the speed of the spring run-off and precipitation and the lake would submerge the abandoned Black Donald graphite mine and most of the town of Black Donald, near Calabogie. “Father Dooner’s-Church,”, a frame structure built under sponsorship of the late Monsignor William Dooner during the First World War on the highest point in the district would alone remain to mark the site of Black Donald. . The church was abandoned when the mine was shut down in 1954.

Orla Lambert-Nickell I remember Dad and Mom driving us down to look at the village one last time before they flooded it. It was so sad to see. We walked through the buildings and I still remember a steeple sticking out from the water for a long time

Romanian ghost village has been submerged in a toxic lake 40 years after  being flooded to build mine | Daily Mail Online
This is a stock photo of a church steeple peaking out of the water.. I wanted everyone to feel how I am feeling now.. just a sadness of losing any kind of history.
 -
The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
21 Aug 1965, Sat  •  Page 87

Renfrew , Ontario. Canada. facebook Page

October 7 · 

Thank you Mike Dakers for sending this article below.

Black Donald Mines buried under Centennial Lake
By R. Bruce McIntyre – March 4, 2020
You can also read this in the Eganville Leader

The large building on the left was the village’s amusement/dance hall. It was a popular destination on Saturday nights when many residents came to dance or watch a motion picture in the bench seating.
The remains of a rather unique ghost town is not too far from Calabogie, but you won’t find it on a map and you won’t be able to see the old buildings. The once vibrant village of Black Donald Mines is long gone and buried under Centennial Lake.

Centennial Lake covers a mine that, for a time, was a world leader in the production of graphite, the mineral used for lead pencils, stove polish, metallic paints and especially as a lubricant for heavy machinery.

A St. Patrick’s Day fire in 1912 was just one of many accidents or natural disasters that plagued the operations of the mine. A series of mine-shaft collapses in 1950 forced ownership to cease operations and it was the beginning of the end for the mine and the village.
The Black Donald Mines General Store was one of the busiest locations in the village. The store was the only source of supplies for the employees and their families.

Black Donald Mines buried under Centennial Lake | The Eganville Leader
Black Donald Mines 1912 fire …eganvilleleader.ca


Today, that mine, and the busy village that popped up during its heyday, are buried. It was a village where most of the early workers were of French descent who worked alongside a new wave of Irish men looking to improve their lot in life.

The names of some of those early French settlers and Irish miners are still present in the area as some of their descendants still call the area home.

For the first half of the 20th century, the name Black Donald was associated with the mine. Irish and French workers spent long days with artificial lights strung along the shaft to help them find their way.

Today, Black Donald is the name of a lake that is one of the most popular tourist locations in Greater Madawaska, a far cry from working underground in total darkness.

Money People’ Got The Mine Operational

The story goes that a homesteader named John Moore literally tripped over rock containing graphite while searching for his cows. That simple discovery led him on a six-year quest in search of ‘money people’ to invest in his find.

In 1895, John Moore met Senator George McKindsey. The Senator gave him two dollars to cover the cost of leasing 167 acres of his land and he would return four months later to pay Mr. Moore $4,000 for all surface and mineral rights on the property.

The very next day, Senator McKindsey sold his newly acquired land to a group of businessmen who formed the Ontario Graphite Company. It wasn’t a bad couple of days for the Senator who pocketed a whopping $42,000 for the sale of the same site from Mr. Moore 24 hours earlier. He left the village bound for Ottawa with a nice little profit of $38,000.

The mine was up and running in mid-1896 with 15 employees and by 1904, the company had a refining plant on site and a workforce of 32 employees. And it showed no signs of slowing down.

A Village Is Born

That year, Rinaldo McConnell took over the day-to-day operations and he realized the potential of the mine and took steps to keep the men motivated in order to increase production. Within the first year of managing the mine, he had several more houses built for the married men and their families, as well as a larger sleep-camp for the other workers. When war broke out in 1914, the demand for graphite was sharply increased and the mining operation continued to grow, adding on to the 77 buildings that dotted the landscape. The growing village grew to 118 during the war and employees were kept busy when not below the surface. New structures were built and among those buildings were a barber shop, a Catholic church, a school and a dance hall. All the buildings were lit with electric lights, except for the school which was located just outside the village. By 1924, the mine reached the peak of its production. It accounted for 94 per cent of all graphite in Canada, but managing the site was no easy task. The operation declined and by 1939 the workforce was down to only seven employees as most operations ceased when the mine was purposely flooded. Although World War II started in 1939 and several mines throughout Canada were heavily involved in the war effort, it wasn’t until 1943 that operations returned to the village and it appeared the resurrection of the mine had begun. Residents cheered when Jack Wilson became the new postmaster in 1944. He told them the new daily mail service from Calabogie was a good sign and things were looking positive for the village. When they raised a beer to toast their good fortune, they thanked Mr. Wilson a second time because he helped them get their beer. Because beer was rationed in wartime, it was often ordered by mail from Arnprior and shipped back to the miners. The war-time boom had most of the men in the village return to the mine, but some replaced their shovels and tools with rifles and joined up to fight for their country. On three occasions the villagers came together to mourn the loss of three young men who left the tight-knit community to go overseas. They gathered to give comfort to the Brydges family after Walter Brydges was killed at Dieppe; they cried when word came back that Nick Danyluck died in a Japanese concentration camp and they attended church to say goodbye to Aldome Scully who was killed during the march to Berlin.

From Village To Ghost Town

When the war ended in 1945, the one-time rosy outlook for the mine and village was beginning to fade after several accidents and weather conditions took its toll. Production was halted several times due to mine shaft collapses. The loss of all electricity after a dam was washed away on the Madawaska River, combined with a fire in some of the key buildings, finally took its toll on ownership. In 1950 underground operations were terminated and by 1954, scrap dealers were called in to salvage whatever they could. The industry that fueled the growth was gone and the village’s fate was sealed. Black Donald Mines was now just another Canadian ghost town. All that remained were a few burned out buildings. The residents who used to spend every Saturday night in the dance hall or had their hair cut at the barber shop or attended church every Sunday morning had long moved away. The one-room schoolhouse that paid Mamie Foran $500 in 1918 to teach the French and Irish children daily lessons was closed when Stella Amell said goodbye to her students for the last time in June,1962. George and Margaret Kelly took over the post office after former Postmaster Jack Wilson passed away. On August 31, 1962, they sorted the mail one last time when the final delivery was made to the rural outlet. Ontario Hydro purchased the site in 1959 with a plan to build the Mountain Chute dam. Contractors were brought in to bulldoze the remaining buildings to make way for the dramatic change of landscape envisioned by Ontario Hydro. In 1966, the dam was built and the operating station was ready to go, when water was released to fill the 8,500 acres headpond. After six months, the flooding ended and the body of water was named Centennial Lake in honour of Canada’s 100th birthday year in 1967. As water cascaded through the sluiceway of the Mountain Chute Generating Station on March 26, 1967, hydro employees gathered to celebrate the first day of operation. Perhaps some of them looked out on to the horizon and wondered where the final traces of Black Donald Mines were buried under the new 150-foot deep new lake.

Paul Anderson Thought I’d add to the story.
This is actual graphite mined from Black Donald Calabogie.
Black Donald Graphite Mine Historical Plaque
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The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
22 Nov 1950, Wed  •  Page 12

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The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
30 Jul 1927, Sat  •  Page 15
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The Daily Item
Sunbury, Pennsylvania
18 Jun 1954, Fri  •  Page 12
Black Donald Graphite Mine Historical Plaque

Tales from the Mines —Kingdon Mine Part 3

Tales from the Mines —Kingdon Mine Part 2

Kingdon Mine Led Galetta Area from a Boomtown to a Ghost Town

Lost Mines — Clyde Forks Mine

When History Comes to You–A Visit from Middleville

Clyde forks Mine- Dualsport

Deed of Mines? Linda’s Mailbag — Amy De Ridder

Gold Mines and Disappearances

Is there Still Gold on Wellesley Island ?

Did Anyone Find the Lost Barrel of Silver Coins That Lies at the Bottom of the Rideau Canal?

What Happened to the Gold on the Ramsay 7th line?

Gold in Dem Dar Hills of Lanark

So What Happened to the Marble at the Tatlock Mine?

My Daddy was a Miner — was Yours?

The Mysterious Tatlock Mine

The Early Days of Working in the Ramsay Mine — Going Down Down Down

Looking for the Artist of this Carleton Place Painting-The Lime Kiln

A Giant’s Kettle in the Middle of Lanark County

Where Were the Miracle Salt Springs in Pakenham? I Love a Challenge!

Gold Mines and Disappearances

Carleton Place Then and Now–Bridge Street Series–Volume 16– Newman’s Ha

You Can Explore This Haunted Ghost Town For A Creepy Adventure In Ontario

Are you brave enough to visit after dark?

Tales from the Mines —Kingdon Mine Part 3

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Tales from the Mines —Kingdon Mine Part 3
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The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
29 Jan 1949, Sat  •  Page 19

Tales from the Mines —Kingdon Mine Part 2

Kingdon Mine Led Galetta Area from a Boomtown to a Ghost Town

Lost Mines — Clyde Forks Mine

When History Comes to You–A Visit from Middleville

Clyde forks Mine- Dualsport

Deed of Mines? Linda’s Mailbag — Amy De Ridder

Gold Mines and Disappearances

Is there Still Gold on Wellesley Island ?

Did Anyone Find the Lost Barrel of Silver Coins That Lies at the Bottom of the Rideau Canal?

What Happened to the Gold on the Ramsay 7th line?

Gold in Dem Dar Hills of Lanark

So What Happened to the Marble at the Tatlock Mine?

My Daddy was a Miner — was Yours?

The Mysterious Tatlock Mine

The Early Days of Working in the Ramsay Mine — Going Down Down Down

Looking for the Artist of this Carleton Place Painting-The Lime Kiln

A Giant’s Kettle in the Middle of Lanark County

Where Were the Miracle Salt Springs in Pakenham? I Love a Challenge!

Gold Mines and Disappearances

Carleton Place Then and Now–Bridge Street Series–Volume 16– Newman’s Ha

You Can Explore This Haunted Ghost Town For A Creepy Adventure In Ontario

Are you brave enough to visit after dark?

Tales from the Mines —Kingdon Mine Part 2

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Tales from the Mines —Kingdon Mine Part 2

SHARON ROBB,

I would love to see an article on this village where my grandparents lived in the 30’s. It is near Fitzroy Harbour. My grandfather Walter Bootland was a mine superintendent or supervisor for the mill there. He left there to work in the gold fields in Noranda but died of leukaemia shortly after, likely a result of lead exposure at Kingdon. Thank you!

Regards Sharon Malone

Here was the first one I wrote.. Kingdon Mine Led Galetta Area from a Boomtown to a Ghost Town now part 2

Old Barn, Kingdom Mines, Ont. – Cube Projects
Old Barn, Kingdom Mines, Ont.$1,500.00 CAD*· In stock·Brand: Cube Projects
R. W. Burton 1971 oil on panel 10 X 13 in. Provenance: Directly from the artist’s studio, owned by Monette family of Ottawa. Ralph Wallace Burton
Map of Kingdon Mine Rd, Ottawa, ON

Less than 40 miles from Canada’s capital city there are 2,000 acres of undeveloped bushlands with some four miles- of waterfront. In that triangle of land bounded by the Ottawa, and Mississippi Rivers, and what is commonly known as the Mississippi Snye. I had no idea what that meant so looked it up. The Snye originates as a branch of the Mississippi River, which enters the Ottawa River at Marshall Bay, upstream of Morris Island

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The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
26 Jul 1922, Wed  •  Page 4

During the years of 1914 to 1930, Kingdon Mining and Smelting Company was among the greatest producers of lead in Canada. In those years the village of Kingdon Mine boasted some 40 homes, a school, community hall, arena, and produced some of the finest baseball and hockey teams in the district.

Tom Lauzon’s General Store was the focal point for evening gatherings when the sports program was not in full swing. It was a “boom” town and remained so until 1931 when the bottom fell out. The inhabitants moved out; some to the northern mining camps; some to the village of Galetta; and others to the industrial town of Arnprior eight miles away.

Within a few years, the place was a ghost town; the old unpainted fronts of the frame buildings that once dotted the main street began to come down; hydro lines were withdrawn; there was no water system left; and the few oldtimers who remained had to revert to the oil lamp and the old village well.

JOHN J. STANTON, retired Fitzroy Harbor farmer and noted historian, tells that his father who homesteaded lots 23 and, 24 on the 7th concession of Fitzroy, stumbled across the lead discovery prior to 1870. A haying bee was. taking place on the Stanton farm and the crew started a fire on a big rock to boil a pot of tea, and they noticed the moulten lead” seeping from the rock.

While the discovery of lead on Laflamme Island, now known as Chats Island, was made prior to 1870, the first work was begun by James Robertson in July, 1884. Some few hundred tons of “hand cobbed” ore (lead or galena cobbed from the calcite matrix) was shipped to Kingston for smelting.

A fire then destroyed, the buildings and equipment and nothing was done until 1914 – when the James Robertson Estate reopened the mine; the shaft was sunk, and under the direction of general manager A. G. Munich, a mill was built and a smelter- erected. By 1931 the main shaft had gone to a depth of 1,448 feet when the price of lead literally evaporated and the mine shut down.

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The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
05 Oct 1937, Tue  •  Page 19

From 1915 to 1931 some 905,000 tons of ore and waste was hoisted. Lead concentrates produced 76,-820,000 pounds along with 657,000 pounds of zinc concentrates. Pig lead amounted to almost 60 million pounds valued at more than $4,334,-000. In October, 1937 the Fort Rouiile Mining Corporation attempted a reclaim operation on the mine, but relinquished its option in 1938 when the price of lead again dropped.

Capital gems

Today, all that’s left is a great white calcite tailing pile looking much like a snowy desert with the ghostlike ends of sluice structures sticking from the huge piles. This fine glistening stone is in great demand for driveways, service station lots and decorative concrete work, but was found later to contain lead. Engineering reports say the Kingdon Mine was never exhausted of ore, but merely shut down due to the abnormally low prices of lead.

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The Ottawa Journal
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
20 Jul 1968, Sat  •  Page 34
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The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
27 Sep 1923, Thu  •  Page 6

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 - The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
14 Aug 1925, Fri  •  Page 3

Related reading

Kingdon Mine Led Galetta Area from a Boomtown to a Ghost Town

Galetta area’s hard-rock past comes to life

William Bootland

Kingdon Mine - CapitalGems.ca
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The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
18 Mar 1942, Wed  •  Page 19

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The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
15 Nov 1946, Fri  •  Page 31
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CLIPPED FROM
The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
17 Dec 1946, Tue  •  Page 8

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The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
16 May 1936, Sat  •  Page 24
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The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
24 Dec 1974, Tue  •  Page 40
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The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
25 Sep 1953, Fri  •  Page 42

Lost Mines — Clyde Forks Mine

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Lost Mines — Clyde Forks Mine

Most local mines were iron prospects although one (Clyde Forks) contained barite and minor amounts of copper, gold and silver. According to Archie Guthrie the Clyde Forks Mine shaft was still open in 1963, but it was very unsafe. The ore was taken out by wheelbarrows and the deep ditch by which they were trundled is still there. The ore was taken to Clyde Forks by horse and sleigh and then shipped out by train. At one time the boarding houses around Clyde Forks had been known to stable as many as 35 teams at a time. Why the operation of the mine stopped no one really knows. The most likely answer was that the ore was of poor quality.

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The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
03 May 1918, Fri  •  Page 5
https://www.ontarioabandonedplaces.com/Clyde-Forks-Mine-abandoned-Ontario_loc874.html

Now the mine is hard to spot due to overgrown brush and trees that have grown up through the years. Of course, it all goes back to a favourite family of mine: The Caldwell family. There is no doubt this family had their fingers in everything in Lanark County, and it has been noted they made some money with the Wilbur Mine. Boyd Caldwell, who I have mentioned a few times, put in a little time in a second mine which what was called Clyde Forks/Boyd Caldwell Mine. (Lavant iron mine is on lots 3 and 4, in 12 and 13 concessions)

https://www.ontarioabandonedplaces.com/Clyde-Forks-Mine-abandoned-Ontario_loc874.html

The Clyde Forks Deposit was first staked by “T. Caldwell” in 1918-1919 and the Barite vein was stripped and there was some test pitting. One ton barite, sent to U.S. Work by T.B. Caldwell.

1957-1960: Lanark Silver Mines Ltd., performed magnetic and S.P. surveys, soil sampling and 773 feet of d.d. in 4 holes. (Tweed files 2, 3, 4).

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The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
01 Dec 1967, Fri  •  Page 29

1964-1968: Regional soil and stream geochemical surveys, 30 d.d. holes totalling 3921 feet, surface stripping and a short adit (98 feet) with 2 small cross-cuts. Work by West Branch Explorations Ltd.

1969-1970: Geochem surveys, at least 24 d.d. holes for 5,347 feet, geol. survey and some metallurgical testing by Carndesson Mines Ltd. (Tweed file 9)

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The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
14 Aug 1985, Wed  •  Page 1

1984: Todd Sanders staked out the property in January and in May and June, Lacana Mining Corporation carried out sampling of the main occurrence. In September Homestake Mineral Development Company visited the property and carried out limited sampling. 1986: T. Sanders carried out line-cutting and a VLF-EM survey. 1987: Assaying and a petrographic study of the tetrahedrite-barite zone was carried out.

Related reading

A great story from the ice storm that needs to be documented in Clyde Forks

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The Ottawa Citizen
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
07 Jan 2008, Mon  •  Page 19

#3 K&P Trail: Flower StationHiking

You can join the K&P just out of the village of Flower Station and walk northwards past Flower Round Lake and Clyde Lake or, go southwards past Widow Lake to join Clyde Forks Road.

To get to Flower Station, Travel north on highway 511 past Hopetown to Brightside. Turn west on Waddell Creek Road to French Line, go northwards on French Line Road to Joe’s Lake and westward on Flower Station Road past Clyde Forks to Flower Station.

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relatedreading

When History Comes to You–A Visit from Middleville

Clyde forks Mine- Dualsport

Deed of Mines? Linda’s Mailbag — Amy De Ridder

Gold Mines and Disappearances

Is there Still Gold on Wellesley Island ?

Did Anyone Find the Lost Barrel of Silver Coins That Lies at the Bottom of the Rideau Canal?

What Happened to the Gold on the Ramsay 7th line?

Gold in Dem Dar Hills of Lanark

So What Happened to the Marble at the Tatlock Mine?

My Daddy was a Miner — was Yours?

The Mysterious Tatlock Mine

The Early Days of Working in the Ramsay Mine — Going Down Down Down

Looking for the Artist of this Carleton Place Painting-The Lime Kiln

A Giant’s Kettle in the Middle of Lanark County

Where Were the Miracle Salt Springs in Pakenham? I Love a Challenge!

Gold Mines and Disappearances

Carleton Place Then and Now–Bridge Street Series–Volume 16– Newman’s Hall

Archie Guthrie’s Notes on Lanark Mines Hall’s Mills and Cheese 1993

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Archie Guthrie’s Notes on Lanark Mines Hall’s Mills and Cheese 1993

Lorrie McCann and Dawn Jones were discussing the Tatlock Quarry on the  Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page in 2016. I will tell you I searched and searched for hours and could not find much. All I know is that work has carried on in the Tatlock Mines since 1900. Dawn mentioned Archie Guthrie– and so sad to say all I found is his obituary.

Update October 18, 2018- Found the notes in one of the school books that belonged to Doris Blackburn/ Karen Blackburn Chenier

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First mine mentioned was Clyde Forks Mine

 

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Camille Wickwire—In Tatlock Quarry.

 

Dawn Jones A very interesting read. The cheese factory mentioned at the bottom of the article was known as Barr’s Corner, or Factory Corner or 5 corners. Closest intersection would be Tatlock Road and Darling Road, and Warks Road today.

 

historicalnotes

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relatedreading

Deed of Mines? Linda’s Mailbag — Amy De Ridder

Gold Mines and Disappearances

Is there Still Gold on Wellesley Island ?

Did Anyone Find the Lost Barrel of Silver Coins That Lies at the Bottom of the Rideau Canal?

What Happened to the Gold on the Ramsay 7th line?

Gold in Dem Dar Hills of Lanark

So What Happened to the Marble at the Tatlock Mine?

My Daddy was a Miner — was Yours?

The Mysterious Tatlock Mine

The Early Days of Working in the Ramsay Mine — Going Down Down Down

Looking for the Artist of this Carleton Place Painting-The Lime Kiln

A Giant’s Kettle in the Middle of Lanark County

Where Were the Miracle Salt Springs in Pakenham? I Love a Challenge!

Gold Mines and Disappearances

Carleton Place Then and Now–Bridge Street Series–Volume 16– Newman’s Hall

Deed of Mines? Linda’s Mailbag — Amy De Ridder

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Deed of Mines? Linda’s Mailbag — Amy De Ridder

 

Graphite_mine_QE1_107.jpg

 

Good morning! Recently purchased a property on Black lake and found a pile of old information and wills and a very little about a deed of mines on a large property by a Bernard Farrell in 1872 I’m interested if you have ever heard of any mining property near Black Lake and any history about that area! Thanks Amy De Ridder

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Lake Details: Black Lake contains many islands and inlets to explore. There is a large wildlife population within its vicinity.

Dimensions: 846 acres, Maximum Depth of 70 feet

Graphite was next discovered on Lots 24 and 25, Concession 5 of old North Burgess Township southwest of Black Lake (outside the TRW) in 1917. The occurrence consists of lenses highly charged with flakes of graphite, within crystalline limestone, a contact metamorphic deposit related to intrusion of a pegmatite dyke. The Timmins Mine, as it was known, was worked from 1918-23 by Noah Timmins of Montreal. Numerous pits were opened, and diamond drilling carried out. A mill was installed and operated experimentally, but the operation was never economically viable.–Geology, Mineral Deposits and History of Mining in the Tay River Watershed

1881 Census

Name: Bernard Farrell
Gender: Male
Marital Status: Married
Age: 76
Birth Year: 1805
Birthplace: Ireland
Religion: Catholic
Nationality: Irish
Occupation: Farmer
Province: Ontario
District Number: 111
District: Lanark South
Sub-District Number: F
Subdistrict: Burgess North

historicalnotes

The first mining “magnate” in the Tay River Watershed area was an interesting combination of medical humanitarian and industrial visionary. Dr. James Wilson (1798-1881) was a physician and surgeon from Scotland, who emigrated to Ontario in 1818 at the age of 20, a young man fresh from medical school in Edinburgh. He first settled in the village of Lanark, but moved to Perth in about 1822, setting up a rural medical practice there until 1869, when he returned to his birthplace in Scotland to retire. By the 1830’s, he was starting to take a strong interest in the various rock outcrops that he encountered as he made his rounds to his rural patients in his horse and buggy. He was particularly fascinated with the variety of colourful minerals in the Precambrian igneous and metamorphic rocks west of Perth, and in the fossils that he found in the Paleozoic sedimentary rocks east of town. At that time, the science of geology was in its infancy. The conventional view was that the rocks and fossils had been placed where they were by the hand of God at the time of Creation, and hadn’t moved since. To contradict this concept was considered to be blasphemous in the least, as Charles Darwin was to discover some 20 years later. Whether or not Dr. Wilson worried too much about challenging the conservative beliefs of the majority of his pious neighbours we shall never know, at any rate, he was particularly interested in minerals that might be worked for the benefit of mankind. Untrained formally in geology himself, he kept in touch with the leading earth scientists of the day, including Sir Roderick Murchison, a British pioneer in stratigraphy. He accompanied Sir William Logan, founder of the Geological Survey of Canada, on some of the latter’s surveys, and supplied him with much information on local geology, for which he did not always receive Logan’s acknowledgement. He was the first to recognize the presence of the minerals apatite (calcium phosphate, useful in making fertilizer) and phlogopite (a form of mica) in old North Burgess Township, and to encourage the entrepreneurs amongst his friends to exploit these deposits for profit. These men included his good friends the Honourable Roderick Matheson, a wealthy merchant, magistrate and later senator who lived on Gore Street in the lovely stone house now occupied by the Perth Museum, and William Morris, who headed up the company which built the first Tay Canal. Dr. Wilson and Matheson first obtained property on Lot 5, Concession 8 of North Burgess Township (Crown grant to Matheson of the north half on Feb. 23, 1852, and the south half on October 6, 1853). Wilson obtained a grant of the north half of Lot 2, Concession 8 on July 8, 1852, and Matheson bought the south half on July 16, 1853. Actual working of the deposits (on Lot 2) began in 1855, Canada’s first phosphate (apatite) mine. Interest eventually shifted to Matheson’s property on Lot 5 (now part of the Burgess Wood subdivision), where in 1870, the first recorded commercial shipment of phosphate occurred. By this time, Wilson had returned to Scotland. Before he left, he gave his extensive rock and mineral collection to the Honourable Mr. Matheson, who stored them in his warehouse in Perth. Matheson died of a stroke in January, 1873, while writing a letter to his friend Dr. Wilson, no doubt telling him of the success of their first joint mining venture. The mineral collection was donated by his son, Colonel Allan Matheson, to the local museum, then housed in the high school. When the Perth Museum opened in 1967 in  the former Matheson House on Gore Street, the collection found a permanent home there.

 

That very first mine was later sold by the Matheson estate to Robert Chamblet Adams and Joseph S. Roper in 1878. The mineral rights were leased to the Anglo-Canadian Phosphate Company, Ltd. in 1886-93. In 1907, William Lees McLaren, son of lumber baron and Senator Peter McLaren (the latter had worked an adjacent property on Lot 4, Concession 8 together with Arthur Meighan in previous years), bought the property, and worked it for mica for a number of years. This became known as the McLaren Mine, and was one of the largest in this part of the province. After the initial work on Lot 2, Concession 8 commenced in 1855, other phosphate mines soon opened up in the vicinity within the TRW, including the Byrnes (1870), Otter (1870), Old Anthony (1871), and Smith (1883) workings, all now within the Mica Mines Conservation Area. Larger phosphate mines just outside the TRW in old North Burgess Township included the Munslow-Martha (1871), Hanlon (1890’s) and Silver  Queen (1903) Mines. It is interesting to note how many of the old mining families are buried in the old Roman Catholic cemetery in nearby Stanleyville, including Byrne, Hanlon, Smith, Adam and others.

 

The mineral phlogopite (white mica) had also been recognized by Dr. Wilson, and was produced as a by-product with the apatite in the early days of mining in old North Burgess Township. At first, it did not have much of a market. The first mine worked purely for mica was the Pike Lake Mine, on Lots 16 and 17, Concession 9 of North Burgess Township, at the eastern end of Pike Lake, which was first opened in 1860 by a New York Company. The first sheet mica produced here was shipped to France, where the French navy used it in their battleships. In 1880, Belden’s Historical Atlas of Lanark County noted that, although the operation had been discontinued, ” the supply is in great abundance and the quality of the article first class”.The mine was reopened in 1892 and again in1902, and for awhile, supplied the French Navy with sheet mica for port-holes in its battleships. The mine was so important at the time that the village of Stanleyville was known then as “Micaville”.By 1896, with markets for local phosphate drying up, mica became the most economic product, and a new mining “boom” took place within North Burgess Township, including the TRW. Local businessmen dreamed up new uses for this mineral, and the old phosphate mines were soon being reworked for mica. In time it was being used for stove and furnace windows and doors, irons, toasters, spectacles, goggles, gas-masks, lamp shades, fuse-plugs, separating leaves in electrical conductors and insulators in electric motors. Scrap mica was used for covering steam pipes and boilers, and was built up into sheets called “micanite”, using shellac as a cement. Ground mica was found to be useful in making wall-paper (it gave it lustre), a filler in paint and rubber, as a lubricant in axle-gease, and in pipe-coatings, insulation, fire-proofing, patent roofing and telephone receivers. At one time, there as many as 30 mica mines operating in old North Burgess Township alone. One of the reasons for this region’s viability for mica production was its close proximity to the Rideau Canal, which afforded a cheap transportation route to markets.

 

Farther from Perth in the TRW, apatite, and later, phlogopite mica, were mined in old South Sherbrooke Township in Lanark County, and old Bedford and Hinchinbrooke Townships in Frontenac County, in the latter two, in the Bobs Lake and Eagle Lake areas respectively. Just outside the TRW in North Burgess Township, the Silver Queen Mine (Lot 13, Concession 5) produced phlogopite mica from 1903 to 1909, and apatite from 1903 to1912. The mica was a light silver amber colour of excellent quality, hence the name. In its heyday, the operation boasted a boarding-house for 20 men, a boiler-house to generate steam for 3 drills and a hoist. Three pits up to 15 metres deep were worked, as well as underground chambers. The Munslow-Martha Mine (Lot 13, Concession 6, North Burgess Township) was another large producer of phosphate in the period 1887-1902, was reworked for mica from large pits in 1891-1907, again in1940 – 42 during WW II. The Hanlon Mine (Lot 11, Concession 6) had a large camp and buildings, with a shaft reaching 53 metres in depth, and produced mica from the late 1890’s to 1909. At its peak, 115 men were employed, making it the largest mining operation in old North Burgess Township.

 

Major mica mining in the area ended in 1912, and had practically ceased by 1925 when cheap mica began to be imported from Madagascar. Within the TRW, production of mica ceased in the Byrnes Mine (Lots 11 and 12, Concession 7, North Burgess Township) in 1904, at Smith (Lot 9, Concession 7) in 1906, in South Sherbrooke Township in 1911 (McEwen Mine), in the McLaren Mine (Lot 5, Concession 8,  North Burgess Township) in 1918, but in the Eagle Lake area (Green Mine) in 1942, Bobs Lake Mine in 1948, and Otter Mine (Lots 10 and 11, Concession 7, North Burgess Township) as late as 1952.  –Geology, Mineral Deposits and History of Mining in the Tay River Watershed

 

Come and visit the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page– what’s there? Cool old photos–and lots of things interesting to read. Also check out The Tales of Carleton Place.

Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in The Townships Sun andScreamin’ Mamas (USA)

 

 

relatedreading

 

Gold Mines and Disappearances

Is there Still Gold on Wellesley Island ?

Did Anyone Find the Lost Barrel of Silver Coins That Lies at the Bottom of the Rideau Canal?

What Happened to the Gold on the Ramsay 7th line?

Gold in Dem Dar Hills of Lanark

So What Happened to the Marble at the Tatlock Mine?

My Daddy was a Miner — was Yours?

The Mysterious Tatlock Mine

The Early Days of Working in the Ramsay Mine — Going Down Down Down

Looking for the Artist of this Carleton Place Painting-The Lime Kiln

A Giant’s Kettle in the Middle of Lanark County

Where Were the Miracle Salt Springs in Pakenham? I Love a Challenge!

Gold Mines and Disappearances

Carleton Place Then and Now–Bridge Street Series–Volume 16– Newman’s Hall

Kingdon Mine Led Galetta Area from a Boomtown to a Ghost Town

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Kingdon Mine Led Galetta Area from a Boomtown to a Ghost Town

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Kingdon Mines (Lead) at Fitzroy [Harbour, Ont.] near Arnprior. ca. 1910

Up river from Fitzroy Harbor and near Galetta, a lead mine, known as Kingdon Mines, produced high quality lead for some time, but was flooded when Chat. Falls dam was built. The entrance tunnels and pits are all flooded by the swamp nearby.

To see what is left of Kingdon Mines head on down to the video below.

 

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 - Kingdon mine led Galetta area from boom town to...

 

 - Lead warnings no shock to town West Carleton... - Lead: Will take test to be on safe side...

Clipped from

  1. The Ottawa Citizen,
  2. 18 Jan 2000, Tue,
  3. Page 36

 

historicalnotes

 

Clipped from

  1. The Ottawa Citizen,
  2. 21 Nov 1919, Fri,
  3. Page 3

 - INVESTIGATE DEATH . LATE MS. HHT (Special to...

Clipped from

  1. The Ottawa Citizen,
  2. 24 Feb 1908, Mon,
  3. Page 3

 - 5 What's New in Mining j The vicinity of...

Clipped from

  1. The Ottawa Citizen,
  2. 03 Oct 1925, Sat,
  3. Page 10

 

 - as of SOME FACTS ABOUT VILLAGE OF GALETTA Went...

Clipped from

  1. The Ottawa Citizen,
  2. 12 Jun 1926, Sat,
  3. Page 28

 - 13 , rtBE VICTIM INTEMsED. , PAKJENHAM, Ont,...

Clipped from

  1. The Ottawa Journal,
  2. 15 Apr 1931, Wed,
  3. Page 13

 

 - on-n eareleasueaa possibly due to hi altered...

Clipped from

  1. The Ottawa Journal,
  2. 09 Oct 1919, Thu,
  3. Page 20

 - Miner Killed by Cave-In. Arnprlor,- Ont., Aug....

Clipped from

  1. Nanaimo Daily News,
  2. 12 Aug 1925, Wed,
  3. Page 4

 - a R. Sawyer Passes At 77 Richard Thomas Sawyer,...

Clipped from

  1. The Ottawa Citizen,
  2. 28 May 1951, Mon,
  3. Page 14

 

 - consider-(Continued Rail- be a to for Mother...

Clipped from

  1. Nanaimo Daily News,
  2. 11 Mar 1935, Mon,
  3. Page 1

Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in The Townships Sun andScreamin’ Mamas (USA)

Come and visit the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page– what’s there? Cool old photos–and lots of things interesting to read. Also check out The Tales of Carleton Place.

relatedreading

Gold Mines and Disappearances

Is there Still Gold on Wellesley Island ?

Did Anyone Find the Lost Barrel of Silver Coins That Lies at the Bottom of the Rideau Canal?

What Happened to the Gold on the Ramsay 7th line?

Gold in Dem Dar Hills of Lanark

So What Happened to the Marble at the Tatlock Mine?

My Daddy was a Miner — was Yours?

The Mysterious Tatlock Mine

The Early Days of Working in the Ramsay Mine — Going Down Down Down

Looking for the Artist of this Carleton Place Painting-The Lime Kiln

A Giant’s Kettle in the Middle of Lanark County

Where Were the Miracle Salt Springs in Pakenham? I Love a Challenge!

Gold Mines and Disappearances

Carleton Place Then and Now–Bridge Street Series–Volume 16– Newman’s Hall