Earlier, I wrote about a mine at the north end of Cobalt Lake. Today, I’d like to introduce you to the mine site at the south end. Unlike the Right of Way Mine site where several buildings still stand rusty but intact, most of the buildings at the Cobalt Lake Mine and mill are gone. Only the concrete foundations and some walls remain. The property has been rehabilitated by Agnico Eagle, the owner of most of the mine sites in Cobalt/Coleman.
In 1903, prospectors discovered nuggets of silver in the gravel on this end of Cobalt Lake, but mining the lake bottom was reserved for the Crown. In 1906, however, the Province of Ontario auctioned off the mining rights. The winners formed the Cobalt Lake Mining Company and mined the veins under the lake. These veins subsequently produced close to 7 million troy ounces of silver. The most productive of these veins was known as the Cobalt Lake Fault and measured approximately 330 x 130 x 1.3 metres.
Ever since 1907, other mills around Cobalt Lake deposited tailings (finely ground particles of mine waste) into Cobalt Lake. When silver recovery methods improved, companies returned to Cobalt Lake and reprocessed the tailings to recover the silver earlier operations left behind. Agnico Eagle conducted the most recent such reprocessing in 1966. The company drained the south end of the lake and recovered approximately 200,000 troy ounces of silver. The tailings from this operation where deposited in the north end of the lake and now form the foundation for part of the Cobalt park.
The other night I was out taking photos of the ruins of the Cobalt Lake Mine mill site. As I snapped away, I noticed the building in the background and saw… a door! “Great!” I thought. “I can contribute to Norm’s Thursday Doors series at the same time as I take inventory of the signage on the Heritage Silver Trail sites. I love efficiency, don’t you?
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Thursday Doors is a weekly photo feature hosted by the Norm Frampton at Norm 2.0.
Categories: Mining Heritage