Development in 1875, had also taken place on Clement Lead Zone that was 18 inches thick. Upon mill testing it was proven to have also yield 3 dwts to the tonne of ore produce. Another lead which was overlying the Preeper Lead Zone was also worked by Mr. MacDonald. Mr. MacDonald at the time was also working Hartford Mining Company and would undertake bulk sampling that had yielded 15 Dwts of gold (Au) per tonne.
R. G Fraser was also another prospector who uncovered the extension point to the Ophir Lead Zone in 1876. This newly discovered quartz-lead was also being prepared for mining as a company had taken over operations and dewatered the shaft. Nothing else had happened during this time period of exploring much of the quartz-lead veins in this general area.
It was rather in 1877, when work at the time was done on a much smaller scale at the Renfrew Gold Mine Project. Most of the work that was done on the Clement Lead Zone was also very minimal during that year of operating. Another opening was made on the Ophir Lead Zone to the west of the rich ground discovered by R. G. Fraser. Other issues would also rise when the pumping of the workings was affected by rods coming from the St. Andrews Mill, and the returns were not met to be satisfactory. Other plans at the time were done towards opening up the McLeod Lead Zone that was being done McClure. The opening of the McLeod Lead Zone had resulted in discovering nugget formed gold (Au) in the workings. Upon assaying of this location, it was also determined that the gold assay was 1 ounces of Au per tonne of ore.
Further prospecting would also commence in 1878, when extensive exploratory work was being done in discovering other quartz-lead veins. It was at this point in time where the exploratory work did not come out with success in finding new quartz-lead veins in the area. Most of the work that was done on the McLeod Lead Zone was stop as the quartz-lead had gotten thinner at depth. Some development work however did continue as the shaft was now reaching 120-feet in depth, and the 100-foot level was extended 70 feet west. Production that came from this mine was taken from the east stope that had extended for a length of 50 feet. Prospecting was also done at a distance of 750 feet west on another quartz-lead vein that returned low values in gold (Au).
Most of the work that was done in 1881, was also continued onward by various prospectors that were developing the Renfrew Gold Mine. Some major changes were ongoing during the year when Dr. Rac had opened the Brook No. 2 and Bain Lead Zones. A minimal work was done during the year as the shaft was sunk and had exposed good ore grades from this location. Other expectations would also be made when Dr. Rac would commence mining operations on this zone in obtaining better grade Au ore. Prospecting and exploring the ground in the general area had produce gold but it wasn’t up to par with the prices at around $3.00 per an ounce of Gold (Au) in 1879.
Small scale mining operations were also being achieved on the Ophir Mill, as Dr. Rac was preparing to commence underground development, and exploratory work. Most of this development work had take place on the Hard, Brook No. 2, and Bain Lead Zones. The quartz-lead zones in this general area are wide spread and have sometimes connections between each other known as extensions. Nothing else would take place within this time period of actively preparing the Hard, Brook No. 2 and Bain Quartz-Lead Zones for production in 1882
The Empress Gold Mining Company was rather the bigger producer in the Renfrew Mine area in 1884 Most of the mining operations by this company were done at a much smaller scale during this time period. Work was confined to the Empress Shaft that was officially down to a depth of 100 feet below the surface. Other plans were also being made to sink this shaft to even further depths of 200 feet below the surface in order to open up a fresh lift. Hoisting from the mine workings had amounted to 1,670 tonnes of pay ore that had recovered 569 ounces of Gold (Au). Preparations were also being made towards obtaining the right appliances, and pump for this mining project.
It was in 1885, when Heyward continued mining operations at the Empress Gold Mine Project. Work at the time was also being extended into ground that was producing much higher assays then previously tested. Much of the ore crushing was also reported to have been at a stand still due to the dry season effecting the much needed water source. Hoisting at the time had amounted to 641 tonnes of quartz-lead that produced 639 ounces of gold (Au) from the Empress Mine.
A very minimal amount of work was also carried on by Mr. MacDonald, and Dr. Rac at the time. Most of the work that was done by Dr. Rac was aimed at further exploring the Hard, Bain, and Brook No. 2 Quartz-lead Zones. The other area that was work became known as the Preeper Lead Zone that was worked by Mr. MacDonald at the time.
Mining Operations at the Empress Mine in 1886, were being achieved a much larger scale. It was during this point in time when the Empress Mining Company had blocked out a large tonnage of ore from stoping. This production that had came from the Empress Mine would be able to supply the mill with feed for several months. Shaft sinking had also commenced at this time in which the Empress Shaft was 280 feet deep and would continued to further depths. Much of the work at the time was focus on the bottom level when 400 feet of driving was done. During this time period it was also reported that overhand stoping was done, and a large amount of ore was blocked out from the Foundation Lead Zone. A crosscut was also driven south at the bottom level as it was being aimed at intersecting the Hay Lead Zone. It was also determined that the Hay Lead Zone had contained good widths and was fairly cheap to process within the mill. Most of the ore that came from this general area would also be hoisted from the main shaft at the Foundation Lead Zone. The quartz-lead ore that had came from this project was very well adjusted to the milling operations. Other changes were also made when a new pump was place within the main underground shaft operation in keeping it free of water. Even further plans were established as the Empress Mining Company had wanted to redesign the mill to have 20 stamps for much larger production. Another portion of this property that was worked at the time had included the Free Claim property before being sold off to E. C. McDonnel, and Associates, who would reopen this section next season.
Mining operations at the Renfrew Gold Project had continued onward during the operating year of 1887. Much of the crosscuts that were driven to the Hay and Preeper Lead Zones were completed. Ore at the time was also reached in large quantities from crosscuts that were driven on the bottom levels at a depth of 370 feet. Other improvements were made when a new water mill was completed by the stream and had been in constant production since that time period. Some more installations would also take place when the on-site mill was supplied with improved batteries and feeders. This had also largely increased the capacity of the mill per a stamp then that in previous years of operating. Another portion of property known as the Free Claim was worked at a large scale during the year. Prior to mining, the crusher was place on repair, and a new water wheel was set up. Hosting was also operated by the Water Wheel as water power had been the main power source at this mine site.
More problems had soon face the Empress Mining Company as a fire had damaged their mill in curtailed development in 1888. This was place under repair during the fall season in which no mining was done at the time, and the Free Claim would be closed down. From all milling that was done in 1888, the returns from the ore process had only recovered a total of 253 ounces. This would also mark the ending point for the Empress Lead Zone which was apart of the Renfrew Gold Mine Project.
Mining operations at the Renfrew Gold Mines were about to happen at a much bigger scale during the early 1900’s. It was in 1901, when the Big Five Mining Company had continued mining since starting operations in 1898. By this time, the No. 1 Shaft that was sunk on the dip of 045 degrees was officially down to a depth of 150 feet. Most of the work was confined to stoping of a very large block on the belt to the south-east of the No. 1 Shaft Operation, and a small block of stoping was left near the top. Lateral development at the time had taken place on the 70-foot level that was opened up by 64 feet and was inline with the Thompson Mine. This rather had resulted in making connections between the Renfrew workings, and the Thompson Mine workings. A cross-cut was also extended north-east for a distance of 155 feet, which had intersected a total of 8 veins, with some not showing to much value in gold on the 70-foot level. Further testing was also taking place as this cut was 20-feet south from where it had met the Thompson Shaft. The No. 2 or 100-foot level was situated to 56 feet to the east and is also connected. A drift to the east from this level had also followed the course of the division line for 36 feet, and had intersected two of the veins found in the upper north-east cross tunnel.
The No. 3 or 100-foot level had also reached the division line between the three shaft operations on the Renfrew Gold Deposit. It was also determined that the course of the dip in which this shaft was sunk had brought it closer to this geological connection division. This resulted in leaving of a sump of 6 feet below the 100-foot level of the No. 3 Shaft. Most of the ground at the time was also stoped out with the exception of two pillar within the shaft operation. Other information that was reported was that the highest point of these two pillars between the No. 1 and 2 is 40 feet high, and 10 feet long. Another pillar is also located between the No. 2 and No. 3 Shaft operation which was 50 feet in height, and 15 to 20 feet long. This also resulted in further statements as no value are suppose to be contained in these as the lie below the pitch of the rich zone. For the most part, this had proven that no pay ore had lied on the north-west side of the shaft. Within this time period the company had also used pumps in order to drain the water from the workings that was empty into pits. Production during this time period had amounted to 751 tonnes that came from the Renfrew Mine had yield 3,358 ounces of gold (Au) or 10 grams to the tonne.
The E Thompsons Mine was rather owned by another mine developer known as C Thompson in 1901. The No. 1 Shaft is rather vertical for 65 feet, and from there it was additionally sunk another 75 feet on the vein. In general, much of the company’s shaft was also located at a distance of 85 feet from the Big Five Mining Company ground, and south-west of the outcrop. The division line between the two properties had also cross at a depth of 75 feet, and the present ground west of this shaft was not available. Further exploratory work from development had also indicated that the deposit had continued at depth. A level on the east side of this shaft was also driven 75 feet to a large cross-sectional fault line. This fault that occurs near the shaft, and the surface is known to also pitch rapidly eastward and throws the eastern portion of the vein 24 feet to the south. The fault had also been followed towards the belt which was driven on for 15 feet easterly. But its also west of this fault that it contains two lead veins comprising of 3 to 4-inch quartz, and only one of these continues beyond the break. Much of the leads from this level were also backstoped to the surface, and the ore was also worked out below this level, and towards the bottom of the shaft by underhand methods. Production since the starting of operations had produce 452 tonnes of ore which had yield 5,475 ounces of gold (Au).
Within 1902, not a lot had escalated as the Big Five Mining Company had decided to fold from this project. The only mine that was now apart of the Renfrew Gold Mine was the Thompson Mine Zone. Production was rather done on a small scale when the Thompson Zone had produce 974 tonnes of ore that yielded 1,374 ounces. Another company known as the Warwick Co. had also commence some crushing of the ore from the Renfrew Zone.
Other changes were made in 1903, when the property was transferred over to Picton Development Company. The main shaft at the time, which was not sunk on the true dip of the strata is vertical to 75 feet, in which it was now 350 feet below the surface. Most of the work was confined to the belt which contained jubilee quartz containing gold values. Development work that was done before the company taking over the property had included sinking three shafts. Each of these shafts were sunk to different depths, in which the No. 1 Shaft was 140 feet, the No. 2 Shaft being 180 feet, and the No. 3 Shaft was 250 feet.
At about 75 feet from the shaft, a cross break had thrown the strata on the east side of the fault location southwesterly for a distance of 25 feet. Much of the fault plane is known to also pitch southeast and is also parallel with the main shaft. It was also at 300 feet in the shaft where a short level was driven on the belt, and much of the ore was stoped to the fault location. Other development engineering plans were aimed at crosscutting on the No. 1 and 2 levels on the fault location. Much of the crosscut on the No. 1 Level was driven 100 feet, in which another vein was intersected, and driven on for 35 feet. At about 25 feet in on this crosscut, the original belt is driven on for 50 feet, at which point another fault throws it northerly for 8 feet. Drifting was then done on the northerly section as it continued to follow the secondary vein of the Renfrew Gold Project. From where the crosscut on the 180-foot level reaches the vein, across the break, the belt has been drifted on 30 feet, and a small raise was made on its face. Much of the quartz-lead vein on the east-side of the fault was considered to have been very small. Even more changes were being done as a new power plant was added at the Jubilee Shaft.
Development would also continue onward when another shaft was sunk a quartz-lead vein at distance of 300 feet south of these workings. The new No. 4 Shaft was already down to a depth of 90 feet on the quartz lead vein that had measured 12 inches. Plans at the time were also made in regards to opening up levels once the shaft had reach 100 feet in depth. Other development would also taken place when a shaft was sunk to a depth of 40 feet on another quartz-lead vein near the road to the north-east.
By 1904, the Main Production Shaft had now reached a depth of 365 feet below the surface. Most of the stoping operations were also carried on at the bottom of the shaft by underhand methods. Stoping that was done on this section of the mine was extended towards the fault at distance of 75 feet east of the shaft. The lead within the fault section was also reported to have been smaller than that at the bottom of the shaft. A small 15 H.P boiler, and hoisting engine were added to the equipment, and a Northey Steam Pump at 60 feet from the surface handles the surface water that’s caught in a dam.
Other changes were also being made when the No. 2 Shaft was deepened to a depth of 140 feet on a 12-inch quartz-lead vein. At about 80 feet, a drift was driven for a short distance to the east where a fault is parallel to the shaft. Other plans for this section of the project was aimed at continuing drifting to the east from the bottom of the shaft.
Most of the work in 1905, had stopped for the time being as the Jubilee Shaft had closed down. Work that was conducted during the year was mainly aimed at exploring the surface of the mine. This also resulted in suspending mining operations at the No. 2 Shaft operation of the Renfrew Gold Mine. Native gold had also occurred as nuggets, grains, and strings, and thin plates in quartz veins, and in slate. Other accessory minerals that were associated with this deposit included arsenopyrite, galena, chalcopyrite, and pyrite that occurred in quartz. Some very rich gold specimens were recovered at the time of mining this property, and some of these specimens were displayed by the Geological Survey of Canada.
In 1908, the Renfrew Gold Property was purchase by the Eagle Mining Company property before being sold to J. Ross Archibald and would later be transferred to Evan Thompson. It was in 1910, when the Renfrew Gold Property was optioned by Evan Thompson to M. J. O’Brien. Work was also progressing at different shafts as new ore was being found for development and would add to the reserves. Within 1910, the three shafts were unwatered, and scaffolds were use for taking out the material that yield good values in gold (Au). It was also at this point in time when the Jubilee Shaft had reached the 400-foot level. Development at the time had continued to extend the workings by 28 feet which had followed the break encountered in the former work. A crosscut was than driven from this break to the level a right angle for a length of 22 feet. Further development would continue to take place when a crosscut was driven on the 200-foot level to the north for 14 feet. Other work was also focus on testing the ground that was opened up from this work, but no pay ore was encountered, and work was discontinued.
Further examination work was now being focus on the Empress Shaft that was sunk on the Foundation Lead Zone. Most of the shaft workings were also being examined which included to testing ore from the Foundation, Peeper, and McLeod Quartz-Lead veins. Three tests which were conducted have given off assay ranging from $0.50 to $2.25 per tonne. The quality of the ore crushed had been 200 tonnes from the Peeper, 100 tonnes from the Foundation, and 150 tonnes from the McLeod Quartz Lead veins.
Another shaft known as the Chummy Shaft was 320 feet before being sunk to an additional 67 feet, which was reaching a depth of 387 feet. Further development had continued on the newly cut, and station 360-foot level that was driven 140 feet east, and 100 feet west. A few chutes at the time were also place within the east drift section, and stoping was now being done. Preparations were also being made when stoping had was about to commence in the west drift, and the chutes were nearly completed. It was also to the east of the shaft when a reservoir was being made to take the water from this level in order to continue sinking the shaft. Much of the quartz lead veins within the shaft were also known to have measured 4 to 8 inches in width, and in a hard-banded slate. The course of this quartzite-slate belt was known to have strike east, and west, and dipped to the south at an angle of 050 degrees. Gold that was taken from this section was recovered in the form of nuggets and had very little fine gold extracted. Lateral development and explorations in the west workings had also determined that the quartz-lead splits into two sections and contains considerable copper in the form of Chalcopyrite.
Examinations were also being done in another shaft known as the Sim Lead Zone during 1910. The Sim Lead Zone was rather developed by a 120-foot shaft on lead that has been cleaned out, and sunken to 42 feet. This had also made the total depth reach 152 feet, and preparations were being made to start drifting east, and west from the bottom. The Quartz-lead vein in this section is also reportedly 12 to 20 inches and is in a banded belt of slate. It was also determined that the coarse of the quartz lead vein was east, and west, and had dipped to the south at an angle of 050 degrees.
Much of the air for the drills at the McLeod Lead, and Sim Lead Zones was taken from the Foundation Lead Zone. Air that was supplied to these operations was taken by a compressor from the Foundation Lead Zone. Power that is used for pumping and hoisting at the McLeod is taken from a 40 H.P boiler at that shaft, and at the Sim Lead Zone by a small 10 to 15 H.P boiler. More changes would also be made when a shaft house, and power house would become erected at this time. Shaft development that had taken place was mainly done on the McLeod Lead Zone, and the power plant was put into operation at the Sim Lead Zone. Ore that is within the different workings is also being handled by the use of horses, and team to the water power crusher on the Renfrew Brook, which is about a half mile south of the Empress Shaft. Power generation would also continue as coal, and wood were being use, the coal being haul from Enfield Station, at a distance of 7 miles. Production that was achieved within this time period had resulted in hoisting 1,834 tonnes of ore, which yield 624 ounces of gold (Au).
Mining within the operating year of 1911, was mainly confined to further developing the McLeod Quartz-Lead Zone. Shaft sinking would once again commence when the shaft was continued to a depth of 475 feet below the surface. Other changes were made from the shaft to a depth of 360 feet as it was lengthened and a new skip road was place from the surface to the bottom of the shaft. A new level was also cut at a depth of 450 feet, and drifts were driven east 68 feet, and west 48 feet. Further development at the time was also commence on the 360-foot level as the east drift was extended 43 feet, and the level to the west was extended by 160 feet. Both of these levels were also amounting a total development footage of 183 feet east, and 260 feet west. Stoping operations at the time were also being carried on from stope sections above the 260-foot level east, and west, and above the 460-foot level to the east and west. A new shaft house was officially completed during the year, and the hoist from the Empress Shaft was taken and place at the McLeod Shaft. Much of the hoist had also operated the new skip that order at the time of lengthening the shaft. Not much had escalated at the Sim Lead Zone besides taking out some ore to be crushed for testing procedures. Even more prospecting was carried out in the vicinity of the Maria Walker Lead Zones. Ore production from the McLeod Lead Zone had amounted to 3,493 tonnes, in which 1,527 ounces of gold (Au) was recovered.
Prospecting in 1912, was carried on the Preeper-McLeod and the O’Brien Lead, while mining was done on the McLeod Lead Zone. Lateral development had continued on the 360-foot level when the east drift was extended 13 feet and was now 196 feet in length. A crosscut was being driven on the 360-foot level to the west of the shaft in which was extended for 25 feet to the south. Even more development continued on the west drift that was extended for 83 feet, and now had a total length of 343 feet. Far more development would continue on the 460-foot level as it was extended 163 feet, and 195 feet west, and are now 231 and 243 feet in total length. Development would also continue on this level as an internal winze shaft was sunk to a depth of 58 feet below the 460-foot level. Most of the stoping operations were carried on above the 360-foot level to the west, and above the 460-foot level east, and west. The vein that was also encountered in the new workings had held its size and is similar to the general quartz-leads encountered in the upper workings. The total production for the end of 1912, was 2,908 tonnes of ore that recovered a total of 1,182 ounces of gold (Au).
In 1953, some of the units belonging to the Department of Mines Mobile Plant were in use by A. S. Bryson. Most of the work was aimed at pumping out the 180-foot workings of the Cameron Shaft operation. Work at the time was mainly focusing on examining the workings, and conducting some sampling.
A major exploration program was initiated prior to dewatering the Cameron Shaft by using the Departments of Mines Mobile Plant. The south drift on the 145-foot level, which is the lowest workings in the 180-foot deep shaft, was driven 32 feet from the shaft following which the back and the bottom of the drift were slashed. Most of the work in doing this was aimed at conducting further bulk sampling on the underground workings within 1954. Further work was done on the hanging wall crosscut that was driven an additional 40 feet. The ore that was obtained from underground, and on the surface had also been milled through out the operating year of 1954.
Within 1955, the Renfrew Mine was back in production as the Horne Gold Mines, Limited had dewatered the Cameron Shaft. Most of the work that was done on this shaft was contracted out to the McClare Bros of Hillsvale. Most of the work at the time was aimed at further exploring the 145-foot level and below it by bulk testing. No other work at this point in time was done by the company within 1955.
Ghost-Town of Renfrew, Nova Scotia, Canada.
Prior to early periods of mining, a town, which is now considered a ghost-town had become establish as Renfrew. Renfrew was rather known as a mining-town back in the mid 1800s. Much attention was focus on the quartz-lead veins in the area that had went into production. Several shaft were sunk upon discovering rich quartz veins contain gold. Some of these veins had become very high in grade which would spark a gold rush towards the Renfrew Mining District. As several prospectors, developers, and mining company had occupied this area, it was needed to develop a town-site. Most of this was cause not only from these historical gold rush events but from employment that became apart of building a mine. This would involve a workforce of several men who had also came with their families, in which houses were needed. The area was also occupied by several milling operations that took place on different Quartz-Lead zones containing gold. As mining was stop, a lot of people who resided here had taken off due to the impacts of not having employment in this area. This is particularly the reason why the Mining-Town of Renfrew is very much so a ghost-town today.