Daren Mine (Old Daren Mine; Darren Consolidated Mine; Daren United Mine; Great Darren Mine; Darren Mine), Pen-bont Rhydybeddau, Trefeirig, Ceredigion (Dyfed; Cardiganshire), Wales, UK
Ref.: (in part): Rocks & Min.: 23:25. A Pb-Zn mine ( although it is recorded as a Pb-Zn mine in Rocks & Min, the mine never produced any zinc ore, and sphalerite is more of an accessory mineral in the vein). Extensive history is given in British mining No40: Northern Mine Research Society.
There is circumstantial evidence Daren may well have been at work in the middle Bronze age (1300BC). A large pre-Roman fort is only afew mts from the vein outcrop. Archaeological excavations have turned up lumps of galena in the ramparts of the hill fort. The vein may also have been worked by the romans after 70AD, again only circumstantial. Stone hammers and mauls have been found at the mine, but these were apparently still being used upto the 1600's. Also 6 wooden spades were found in old stopes, which again could be pre-Roman. A lesse was granted to Sir Hugh Myddleton in (c)1618 when Daren was activly developed to great profit. And was also at work in the 1632 to possibly 1645. Daren appears to have been back at work in the 1650's as there is a record of ores from Darren being smelted at the Talybont smelter. The are no records of the mine being worked from this time untill about 1731. From this date it all appears a bit vague for the next 20-30 years about was going on at Daren, although there dose appear to been some work done in this period. The mine is know to have been at work again in the 1780's for afew years. Daren was reopened on a number of occasions in the 19th centry all to no avail the final working was about 1874-85?. Production Figers are only avalible for the years 1850-79. When it produced 1658 tons of lead ore and 52 tons of copper ore. The ore was also rich in silver ( about 20oz per ton, but sometimes a lot more) by the standards of Welsh ore. Which might be attributted to the presents of tetrahedrite/chalcopyrite in the ore (studys in the "orefield" have shown that some chalcopyrite, and sphalerite is richer in silver than the galena. The tetrahedrite is also silver enriched, but what the ppm is, is not known). The silver from this and other mines was minted at Aberystwyth, and helped to sustain the Royalists in the English civil war (1642-49). The mint was demolished by Cromwells men in 1645. There is also some evidence that small amounts of gold may have been produced from Daren and Cwmsymlog ores. When Thomas Bushell was working this and othere mines associated with the Daren-Cwmsymlog Fault/vein system. The ores from this series of Fault/veins are known to be particulary enriched in silver. Optical studys of ore samples has shown the presents of microscopic spots of gold in the ores. The most recent work has been the making safe of the shafts and open stopes in about 1998. When masses of chalcopyrite where collected, some surfaces where covered in a thin crust of hydrocerussite.
33 entries listed. 32 valid minerals.
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