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Mining and Smelting

Discussion in 'Penwith Industries' started by Halfhidden, Feb 19, 2016.

By Halfhidden on Feb 19, 2016 at 5:06 PM
  1. Halfhidden

    Halfhidden Untouchable Staff Member Administrator

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    LOCAL MINES. There was not much mining done in the Penzance district. A mine formerly existed at the hill above what is now called Mousehole Cave, which is probably part of the workings It will be remembered that large piece of garden ground fell away between the Cave and the road some years ago, carrying the cabbages, etc., down to the floor level, about 60 feet. This was part of the mine. Another mine was situated near Penlee Quarries, and the mine stack was taken down about two months ago; but the most remarkable mine perhaps in Cornwall was the Wherry Mine, commenced by a Capt. Curtis, in 1778, which was below low water mark, and covered, by the sea twice twenty-four hours. He was thought to be crazy, but by his own efforts and that of a company formed later in 1839, about £70,000 worth of tin was raised from it. It had a dramatic ending, for a ship broke from her anchors in the Bay and was driven on to the superstructure of the mine and destroyed it. The mine was then abandoned. The greater part of the tin mined in West Penwith was brought to Penzance to be smelted, and prior to 1838 to assayed, stamped with the Duchy arms, and the tax of 4s. a cwt paid. In some years this amounted to £10,000 for Duchy tax. This was called coinage, because a small piece of coin was struck off the corner of each block. The" Coinage Hall stood on the site of the present Sailors institute (near Jubilee Pool).

    TIN SMELTING. Messrs. Bolitho's smelting house was at Chy an dour, and at stated times the black tin from the mines would be brought in, and the process of assaying and bargaining between the mine captains and the master of the smelting house would probably take the whole day with frequent visits to the Three Tuns (the local pub at Chy an dour that no longer exists) for refreshment. A dinner was always provided there these days by the smelters. The smelting house at Trereiffe Stable or Hobba was opened, so is said, to intercept the' tin coming from the west country, and was owned for many years by Messrs. R. R. Michell and Co, until the amalgamation of several smelting houses under the title of Consolidated Tin Co, with offices at Chy an dour. Later on the Stable Hobba works were converted into a factory for the manufacture of "Sanatogen" from skim milk, by German company. In the war tins was transferred to a British Co, Genatosan Ltd., who in their turn have given way to a Fish Manure Co., and today it is a small industrial estate. No smelting of tin is done in Cornwall.
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2016

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Discussion in 'Penwith Industries' started by Halfhidden, Feb 19, 2016.

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