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Wheal Gorland, St Day United Mines (Poldice Mines), Gwennap, Camborne - Redruth - St Day District, Cornwall, England, UK

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History:

Wheal Gorland's first recorded working was in 1792, but the lodes were probably known long before this date. In this working the lode was showing prospects of being productive, and it was decided to erect an engine in 1795. At this time the lode had been developed to a depth of 40 fathoms. It was decided to sink the shaft a further 20 fathoms. In this working the shaft was sunk to 100 fathoms, but even at this depth no regular ore shoots had been found. The ore was inconsistent sometimes very rich then nothing, and the mine made a loss between 1792-98. At times in the early working of the mine, the ore was so rich in supergene copper minerals a guard was put on the ore wagons. From 1800 prospects seemed to improve, with production reaching a high in 1827 of 2,959 tons of copper ore.

After this date a decline set in, and output dropped to 498 tons by 1838. In 1852 the mine was taken over by St.Day United group of mines, but it seems little or no work was done under the new owners. The mine received a brief reworking between 1906-09 when there was a surge in demand for tungsten and tin, which was found mostly at the granite/country rock contact. The last attempt at ore production at Wheal Gorland was in 1976, when the main specimen producing dump was removed to extract the tin ore (which is speculated to have only contained about 2lb of black tin per ton, a sad loss considering the value of the dumps to collectors). Prior to this date the dump was being actively worked by amateur collectors for specimen material.

Since then there has been a failed attempt by collector/dealers to again access to the Muttrell lode via Davies shaft. And when Wheal Jane was working (and therefore lowering the local water table by mine pumping), it was possible to gain access all the way down to the Country Adit, but again not to the fabled Muttrell lode. It is believed now by local collectors that any access gained in to this lode would probably be unrewarding as the ground from Davies shaft towards the Muttrell lode is like a not-quite-soft cheese and the stopes are likely to have collapsed.

Ore production

PeriodProduction
1792-982,500 tons of copper ore (estimate).
1800-045,907 tons of copper ore
1815-5140,751 tons of copper ore
1906-09164 tons of tungsten ore, 15 tons of tin ore, 18 tons of arsenic.

Mineral List

Mineral list contains entries from the region specified including sub-localities


95 entries listed. 62 valid minerals. 4 (TL) - type locality of valid minerals.

Localities in this Region

UK

The above list contains all mineral locality references listed on mindat.org. This does not claim to be a complete list. If you know of more minerals from this site, please register so you can add to our database. This locality information is for reference purposes only. You should never attempt to visit any sites listed in mindat.org without first ensuring that you have the permission of the land and/or mineral rights holders for access and that you are aware of all safety precautions necessary.

References

Rocks & Minerals (1942): 17: 129.

Palache, C., Berman, H., & Frondel, C. (1951), The System of Mineralogy of James Dwight Dana and Edward Salisbury Dana, Yale University 1837-1892, Volume II: 994.

American Mineralogist (1951): 36: 484.

Rocks and Minerals (1985): 60(1): 24.

Lapis (1986): 11(2): 29-32.

Embrey & Symes (1987): Minerals of Cornwall and Devon, XXX Publishing, 50.

Le Boutillier, N. G., Shail, R. K., & Jewson, C. (2003): Monazite in polymetallic chlorite-(tourmaline)-quartz-(fluorite)-cassiterite-sulphide lodes and its potential for constraining the chronology of magmatic hydrothermal mineralisation in Cornwall. XXX Journal, xxx-xxx.

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