"Massey Telephone Office 1947 – Olga Stressman, Iris Hobin, Margaret Baxter and Grace Hobin. Olga was married to Herb Stressman, mailman in Massey. " -Donna Dyell Larson
History and Exploration
1903 - 1908 - Shakespeare Gold Mining Company, Limited.
One of the very first reports that was published on this property had stated that the property was acquired for the auriferous ore-body it contains. The location had additionally been reported to have consisted of 80 acres of lot 5 of the first concession of Shakespeare Township, Algoma District. Reports on the property had stated that it was located at about one and a half miles due northeast of Webbwood, on the Sault branch C. P. R. line, or about three miles by road.
In 1903, the property was taken over by the Shakespeare Gold Mining Company, Limited., of Sault Ste Marie, in which the capitalization was set at $2,000,000. Much of the operation was under the direction of James Cronan as Superintent, and James McKenzie as Mine Captain. It was by this time period that the two would additionally become in charge of hiring when a workforce of 11 men were employed to the Shakespeare Gold Property. Development on the property commenced in the beginning of September, 1903, and much of this was confined to the building of the camp area. Some of the major construction that followed included the erection of a boarding and bunk house, office, stable, blacksmith shop, and magazine. Construction work that proceed at this site would be followed by building a half mile of road down from the mine to the main highway in the valley.
A considerable amount of surface work would also be commenced at this time, as a large portion of the property had been occupied by a ridge which contains the ore-body. Upon examination of the ground it was also reported that the area had little surface covering, making it easy for a superficial examination by cross-cut and test pitting over a distance of about 300 feet northeast and southwest. It was at the most central point of the property that an adit was driven into the bluff to crosscut the ore deposit for a length of 30 feet. One of the first geological statements on the ore had reported it to contain interbedded lenses and stringers of quartz and chloritic schist, with the latter more or less altered to a light, highly quartzose material by severe squeezing of the rock, and the subsequent circulating waters which deposited the quartz and gold. Evidence of the latter would also be evidently seen within the cavities in the rock throughout the affected area ranging in size that’s up to 5 feet in diameter. All of them had rather lined with contorted masses of quartz, and occasionally contained streaks of quartz and flakes of chlorite. Gold that was deposited in the area is largely confined to the quartz sections and along the walls in schist enveloping the biggest metal equalling in size and value of the best that the western Ontario gold areas have to offer.
From a very minor amount of development so far completed it had indicated that the ore-body had width of at least 50 feet. The total length was stated to have been 250 feet in which one of the main tunnels was driven. Upon examinations it was determined that this would be nearly 100 feet to the southwest that constituted more pay ore, and had encouraging lengths. It was also at this point in time when films of native copper were found to have been inter-laminated with the schist. As prospecting continued one of the main mine captains had additionally tested the material, and had thought to have seen platinum in one of the pans taken. Much of the sulphides in the general area are chiefly iron-pyrites, which are confined to lining of the cavities of ore. The contact with the granite generally lies to the north on the other side of the valley, and at a distance of ½ a mile away.
It was on August, 2, 1904, between 7 and 7:30 A.M., when six men lost their lives at this mine by asphyxiation or poisoning, or both, from inhaling the smoke, or gases, in the underground workings, resulting from a previous blast of dynamite. The deceased were N. MaMillan, superintendent, Peter Reed, Engineer and blacksmith, Joseph Disley, Peter Grant, John Waters, and Eli Latour, as miners. An estimation made had reported that the total workforce of the mine had only been seven men, that discluded those that were fatally killed.. These seven individuals had reportedly worked on the surface, and were the only ones remaining. One of the former superintendents by the name of Jas Cronan, was however present at the time of the accident, and also W. E. Seely, vice president of the company. A number of outsiders from the adjacent Foley Mine, and town, were immediately summoned and quickly appeared on scene. Mr. MacMillan had been mainly in charge of the property from July 22, a period of 10 days, before this accident occurred.
Much of the mine workings were becoming quite extensive at this time as a vertical shaft was sunk to a depth of 95 feet. It was also considered to have been fairly timbered to the bottom, and continued down to the 53-foot level, and decreasing below this to about 6 feet by 6 feet in the rock at the bottom. A tunnel was then driven N. W. at about 75 feet, had intersected the shaft at its face at a depth of 53 feet. It was from this same level that drifts were driven S.W. for 43 feet, and N. E. for 37 feet, with a crosscut S. W. for 17 feet from the face of the drift. A second level would also be station cut on the mines 90-foot horizon and consisted merely of a crosscut running S. W. for 33 feet, and directly under the tunnel. The 4 or 5-foot sump at the bottom of the shaft was usually full of water, and had been full on the 2nd of August, 1904. Much of the entrance to the lower workings was also being done by a tunnel and down the hanging ladders in the shaft. In total, the shaft had two compartments, that were portioned off, and hoisting was being done by a bucket and steam hoist engine.
It was also in 1904, that the surface plant of the mine consisted of a power house containing a 40- or 50 horsepower boiler, the hoist engine, and a 3 drill Ingersoll air compressor. Prior to this, it was also stated that there had been no night shift for a while previous to the accident on August 2nd, 1904, and two crews of miners of two men each were kept working on day shift only. Most of the work had involved driving the second level S. W. by a crosscut. It was also in the face of which the blasting was done that was the indirect cause of the accident, and the other one being on the first level of N. E. Drift. Blasts within the mine were generally set off at the end of the shift, at about 5:30 P.M.. There were a total of five holes, and of these holes, three were set off first by themselves at the above hour. The air was then flown in from the compressor until 6:30 P.M., or after supper, when one of the crew went down into the mine and set off the remaining two holes. It was at this time that the air hose had been hung up in the shaft above the lower crosscut and remained there until next morning. In doing so, there was no attempt made towards blowing out the gas from the second round of holes. Now, in such cases as to this one, namely when blasting had been done subsequent to the last exit of the miners, the order from the superintendent to the engineer were that the latter should blow out the smoke with air from the compressor that was kept running for at least about 10 minutes. It was also on this day that the workings were filled with blue smoke, which should have been sufficient to deter men from entering before fresh air was supplied.
On the morning of the accident, the engineer, Peter Reed, had gone to the power house before breakfast and put a fire in the boiler so that steam was up to about 40 pounds at 7 A.M. But instead of returning to the area again before 7 A.M. and starting the compressor so that the men might have some fresh air when they went down, he went over in company with the miners. Just at about 7 A.M., as the whistle had blown, the four miners went in the tunnel and descended the shaft. Only two should have gone down, since the other two were working in the drift on the tunnel level. It is not known why the four of them had descended. However, it was stated that on their way down, they took the air hose from where it lay on the timber just above the bottom crosscut, and had time to carry it in to the face of this crosscut. But it was here that one of the men had dropped across it, and two had dropped at the mouth of the crosscut, and the fourth had fell into the shaft sump, all overcome by the gas. Total paralysis or unconsciousness was not immediate, as their shouting, or at least one shout, was heard from the power house at the mouth of the tunnel just after their descent. On hearing their shouting, Reed and the other surface man had rushed into the tunnel and heard the men groaning also. All signs of life disappeared, as nearly as can be ascertained, within one or two minutes of their descent, due to paralysis, followed by unconsciousness.
Superintendent, Mr. N. MacMillan, with Mr. Cronan, then arrived on the scene from the boarding house, and had turned the compressor on for the purpose of blowing air to the workings. The bucket that was used in the shaft was at the same time raised and lowered continuously to help start an air current. Mr. MacMillan, at about 7:30 A.M., went in the tunnel again, and then he also went down the shaft, and, like the engineer, dropped off before reaching the bottom. Cronan then took charge of things, and let down a second line of air hose, but not until 10 A.M. did anyone venture into the workings again. The deceased men were then raised to the surface. Their appearance differed but little from when alive, according to the evidence of the bystanders. This had led to believe that, beside carbonic acid gas, and nitrogen, there was relatively large precentage in the gasses of carbon monoxide, which is a poisonous, and producing unconsciousness immediately.
All operations were suspended for a month or so after this accident, but since that time had continued steadily in 1904. The tunnel was additionally driven for a length of 75 feet by crosscutting the formation northwesterly. At 65 feet, drifts were driven 43 feet S. W., and 37 feet N. E, within the latter a crosscut from the face was driven 17 feet S. W. At its face the tunnel then connects with the shaft at a point of 53 feet down. The shaft had reached a depth of 95 feet, and a station that was cut was opened up by a crosscut for a length of 38 feet S. E. From here it was reportedly timbered from the bucket way and ladder way. At the mouth of the tunnel had stood the power house, with a 40 H.P. boiler, 3 drill Ingersoll air compressor, and a hoist engine. The black smith shop had adjoined this power house at one point in time.
It was also from the shaft house, that surface tram road had ran 200 feet across the ridge to a box cute dumping on the crusher floor of a new stamp mill. The new stamp mill at this point was place under construction, and was erected at the foot of the cliff on a flat at the north side. Much of the plant contained a total of 5 gravity stamps, Frue vanner, plates, 7 by 10-inch Jaw Crusher and feeder, and a 35 H.P. boiler and a 10 by 9-inch horizontal engine. One of the main superintendents at this time was James McKenzie, who had now directed a workforce of eight workers that were employed.
By 1905, it was reported that the majority of stock of the Shakespeare Gold Mine was bought out by other interests. The main company who had operated this mine was known as the Shakespeare Gold Mining Company, Limited. It was also at this time that the main superintendents of the mine were Thomas Trotter with Edward Doherty, as mine captain, employing in all 29 men. Upon examination it was revealed that the body had consisted of two parallel veins, or rather enriched portions, as the vein ,material had a width of at least 40 feet. It was also the enriched zone that widely occur on the north and south sides of this vein known as the No. 1 and No. 2 veins. These zones are in the vein material, which is chiefly quartz and chlorite schist, the latter being highly altered and not in contact with the country rock. Quartz in the mine workings are known to generally carry quantity of concentrates which are chiefly pyrites. Much of the ore-shoot is known to also dip nearly vertical, and is known to be quite uniform in occurrence to the depth of which development has progressed on.
Lateral development that progressed on the No. 1 vein zone had been driven 10 feet to the east, and 35 feet to the west. Its also the shaft that’s considered to touch the No. 1 vein on the 100-foot horizon or level of the workings. From here the ore had been stoped out for 34 feet by 40 feet along the vein up to the 50-foot level of the shaft. On the No. 2 vein, the east drift had been driven 130 feet, and the west continued for 50 feet on the vein. As development progress it was reported that stoping operations were begun from the East drift section. On the 150-foot level, the No. 1 vein had been driven east for 30 feet, and west for a length of 45 feet. The ore had also been stoped out for about 22 feet above the timbers of the No. 2 vein. It was also on the No. 2 vein that the east drift was driven 75 feet to the east, and 15 feet to the west. A raise at this point was put through from the east drift on this level to the surface for the purpose of ventilation. The stamp mill was being operated continuously all year, and the first battery of five stamps began dropping on the 3rd February, 1905, and the second battery of five stamps in April of the same year. With the take over of work by the new management, it was stated that the mill had been closed down, and all work directed to the development of the ore-body. In months running of the stamps, over $7,000 was taken off the place, and the tailings carry about $1.60 and the concentrates $40 per ton. From all production it was reported that a total of 4,550 tonnes of ore was taken with an average grade of 0.38 oz. gold per/ton, that produced 1,723 oz. Gold.
By 1906, the control of the Shakespeare Gold Mining Company, Limited., was now taken over by Mr. B. W. Dunn, who was elected president and general manager. It was prior to this ownership change that full control of the mine was gained, and rapid development was undertaken. The stamp mill during this time had not been operated, as work was chiefly confined to underground lateral development work. With development taking place from the underground workings, it was suggest to sink the two-compartment vertical shaft to the 300-foot horizon. No changes were made to development work on the first level that had been station cut on the 50-foot horizon. Examinations of the underground workings were made from the second level at a depth of 88 feet. A drift was driven east on what was styled as the No. 1 vein, or rather No. 1 pay streak, for a length of 270 feet, and by 200 feet at the west end. A crosscut had been driven south for approximately 30 feet through the quartz and chlorite schist to the No. 2 pay streaks, which is milling ore. Drifts had also been driven east for 17 feet, and west for 120 feet along the No. 2 vein. These veins have been connected by a crosscut at the easterly and westerly ends of the drift. From here a crosscut would be driven north for 30 feet at the westerly end of the No. 1 vein. It was on the third level at a depth of 128 feet that a drift had been running easterly along the vein for a length of 310 feet, and to the north by 30 feet. Another drift was also driven westerly for a length of 70 feet on the third mining level of the Shakespeare Gold Mine. From the shaft a crosscut would also be driven southerly for a length of 30 feet, and on the No. 2 vein a drift had been driven 60 feet east. On the fourth level at a depth of 175 feet, a crosscut would be driven from the shaft for 60 feet to the south and 20 feet to the north. Drifts had also been driven 100 feet east, and about 60 feet to the westerly section of the mine property. On the fifth level at a depth of 297 feet, the vein formation had been crosscut for a total distance of 70 feet. As development proceeded it was now claimed that the mine had sufficient amount of ore-blocked out to warrant them in putting in a 50-ton stamp mill. A new shaft was also being sunk at about 400 feet west of the present shaft. From all production achieved, it was reported that the new owners of the company would produce 512 oz. of gold.
Major downfalls would occur in 1907, when the Shakespeare Gold Mine had came to a closed in the fall months. The development work would also be continued, but to what extent it was not certain due to the closure of the mine. One last production that amounted to 4,040 tons of ore had recovered a total of 339 oz. of gold at an average grade of 0.08 oz. per/ton
1936 - 1938 - Ensign Gold Mines, Limited
The property was later overtaken by Ensign Gold Mines, Limited., in 1936, that resulted in dewatering the shaft. Exploration work would later take place as the workings were being thoroughly sampled that resulted in encouraging results to commence a diamond drilling campaign in 1937. It was also during this time period that the workings were kept dewatered as a planned drilling program would be undertaken in 1937. A total of 13 men were also employed at this time, and a gasoline compressor was in use to operate the water pumps. No additional work was commenced since the closure of this mine in 1937, which resulted in unknown diamond drilling.
1942 - 1943 - Webbwood Copper Mining Syndicate, Limited
Later in 1942, the property was once again place on exploratory work as the Webbwood Copper Mining Syndicate, Limited was incorporated in May, 1941. The company at this point in time had a total authorized capitalization of 35,000 shares, of $1 par value. It had also been during this time that the directors of the company were Edward Chaput, as president, Robert F. Hardy, as secretary treasurer, Urbain J. Chaput and Robert Polson as directors.
It wasn’t till 1942, when the main two-compartment, vertical, shaft would be dewatered. Lateral development work would also result in minor amount of drifting that amounted to 70 feet to the east of the No. 1 shaft. Most of the work had been mainly aimed at determining the grades of copper in the mine workings. A bulk sample was also taken from the workings that resulted in obtaining copper ore samples, before the mine was place on care and maintenance.
1944 - 1945 - Mr. N. Oreck
From 1944 to 1945, the mine property had been leased to Mr. N. Oreck, that resulted in further sampling work. It was reported that this work had resulted in taken out ore that was deemed extensive in mineralization that was handcobbed and shipped. Results from this sampling program that was done had obtained one sample containing 4.16 tons, assaying 22.05 oz./ton in gold. Another sample of 4.92 tonnes of ore had also been shipped, that resulted in 29.905 oz/ton in gold. (this I can not believe but maybe its true). From all production that was taken, this resulted in recovering a total gold recovery of 91.78 oz. Au.
1950 - 1953 - Greenray Mines, Limited/Perron Gold Mines, Limited
By 1950, the property was taken over by the newly incorporated Greenray Mines, Limited, with an authorized capitalization of 3,000,000 shares of $1 par value, of which 1,400,010 shares were issued. The company was largely under the direction of K. A. Davis as the acting president, A. E. Perron, as vice president, E. R. Heald, Secretary treasurer, E. D. Greening, D. D. Thompson, and F. M. Murray, as directors.
Work at the Shakespeare Gold Mine site was continued on August, 1950, which was located near Webbwood. Much of the work completed had resulted in driving an adit from the north side to intersect the shaft at the 3rd level, and mining would commence shortly after. The main adit workings had also been driven for a total length of 281 feet in order to complete this lateral development work. A limited amount of diamond drilling and sampling was done, and a bulk sample of 1.36 tons was shipped to Perron Gold Mines. The 1.36 ton sample that was received had been assayed at an average of 10.06 oz. gold per ton. From the minor amount of production taken this resulted in recovering 1.68 oz. of gold.
A total of 9 diamond drill holes, were also collared on the property as joint ventures between Perron Gold Mines, Ltd., and Greenray Mines were done in 1950. The following results were taken from this diamond drilling campaign that resulted in several gold inersections.
Hole No. 1 was collared at an angle of 5 degrees, and had reached a total depth of 375 feet. Most of the work was aimed at testing old stope sections, and to explore the continuity of the veins below the 300-foot horizon. One of the very first samples was taken from a depth between 315.0 to 318.2 feet that average 0.02 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 3.2 feet. Another sample taken between the 318.2 and 321.0 foot horizon had resulted in average grades of 0.06 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 1.5 feet. It was from the core between the 320 and 325 horizons that average a grade of 1.16 oz. gold (Au) per ton over 4.2 feet. This resulted in taking a sample from the 325- and 328-foot horizon that average 0.03 oz. Gold (Au) per ton over 3.0 feet. Sample No. 5 was taken between 334 and 335-foot horizons which average 0.02 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 1.0 feet. Sample No. 6 was taken between the 340- and 342.5 foot horizons that average 0.02 oz. Gold (Au) per ton over 2.5 feet. The second last sample was taken between the 342.5 and 344.0 foot horizons that average 0.02 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 1.5 feet. One final sample was taken from the 344.0 and 350.0 foot horizons that average 0.02 oz. of gold per ton.
Hole No. 2 was additionally driven at an angle of 17 degrees and to a depth of 139 feet in total length. One of the very first samples taken between 44.5 and 46.0 foot horizon had returned average grade of 0.02 oz. gold (Au) per ton over 1.5 feet. A second sample taken between the 46.0 and 48.5 foot horizons had average 0.02 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 2.0 feet. This resulted in a third sample taken between the 48.5 and 49.3-foot horizons that average 0.03 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 0.8 feet. Another sample was taken between the 51.7 and 53.5-foot horizons that average 0.01 oz. of gold (Au) per ton. One final sample was taken between the 85.0 and 88.8-foot horizons that average 0.02 oz. of gold (Au) per ton.
Hole No. 3 was driven at an angle of 20 degrees, and had reached a depth of 129 feet in total length. One of the very first samples taken between 30.0 and 81.0-foot horizons had average 0.02 oz. gold (Au) per ton over 1.0 feet. This resulted in another sample taken from 36 to 37-foot horizons that average 0.06 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 1.0 feet. Sample No. 3 was taken between the 40.0 and 41.0 foot horizons that average 0.02 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 1.0 feet. Another sample was taken between the 44.0 and 45.0-foot horizons that contained a gold average of 0.03 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 1.0 feet. It had also included a sample taken between 45.0 and 46.0 foot horizons that average 0.02 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 1.0 feet. A sample taken between 75.0 and 78.0-foot horizon had only average a trace in gold (Au), and 0.20% Cu values. It would also result in taking another sample between the 94.0 and 95.0-foot horizons that average 0.03 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 1.0 feet. One other sample that was taken between the 95.0- and 96.0-foot horizons had average 0.02 oz. of Gold (Au) per ton over 1.0 feet.
Hole No. 4 was collared at an angle of 28 degrees, and had reached a total depth footage of 244 feet. One of the very first samples was taken between the 74.0- and 75.0-foot horizons that would average 0.01 oz. of gold (Au) per ton. The second sample that was taken between the 75.0- and 77.0-foot horizons had average 0.01 oz. of gold (Au) over 2.0 feet. A sample taken between the 131.0 and 133.0-foot horizons had average 0.02 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 2.0 feet. This had also been followed by another sample taken between 133- and 135-foot horizons that average 0.01 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 2.0 feet. Another sample was taken between the 135-, and 137.0-foot horizons that average 0.03 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 2.0 feet. By this time another sample was taken between the 139.0 and 141-foot horizon that average 0.02 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 2.0 feet. One of the last samples taken between 141.0 and 143.0-foot horizons had resulted in an average grade of 0.02 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 2.0 feet.
Hole No. 5 only had two encouraging results that was collared at an angle of 28 degrees, and to a depth of 250 feet. A sample taken between the 155.5 and 157.0-foot horizons had average 0.03 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 1.7 feet. One of the last samples taken between the 183- and 184.0-foot horizons had average 0.06 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 1.1 feet.
Hole No. 6 was collared at an angle of 28 degrees, and had a total depth footage of 244 feet. A sample taken between the 63.5 and 64.5-foot horizons had average 0.01 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 1.0 feet. A deeper sample taken between the 160.8 and 164.0-foot horizons had average 0.02 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 3.2 feet. Another sample taken between the 164.0 and 167.0-foot horizons had average 0.002 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 5.0 feet. This would also result in taken a sample between the 167.0 and 169.0-foot horizons that average 0.02 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 2.0 feet. One final sample was taken between the 169.0- and 171.0-foot horizons that average 0.04 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 2.0 feet.
Hole No. 7 was drilled at an angle of 45 degrees, and had a total footage length of 255 feet. Only one sample was taken between the 117.0 and 117.5-foot horizons that average 0.04 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 0.9 feet.
Hole No. 8 was drilled at angle of 32 degrees, and had reached a total footage of 256 feet. One of the very first samples taken between the 131.0 and 134.0-foot horizons had average 0.02 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 3.0 feet. Another sample taken between the 134.0 and 136.0-foot horizons had average 0.01 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 2.0 feet. This also resulted in taking a sample between the 136.0 and 138.0-foot horizons that resulted in 0.03 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 2.0 feet. One other sample taken between the 138.0- and 140.0- foot horizons had resulted in an average grade of 0.03 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 2.0 feet. A sample that was also taken between the 140-, and 143-foot horizons had average 0.64 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 2.0 feet. It would also result in obtaining another sample between the 142.0 and 144.0-foot horizons that average 0.07 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over a width of 2.0 feet. One of the final samples taken between the 144.0 and 146.0-foot horizons had average 0.06 oz. of gold (Au) over 2.0 feet.
Hole No. 9 was drilled at an angle of 28 degrees, and had reached a total footage length of 222 feet. One of the very first samples taken between the 137.5 and 139.0-foot horizons had average 0.01 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 1.5 feet. Sample 2 was taken between 207.6 and 208.6-foot horizons that average 0.03 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 1.0 feet. Another sample taken between the 216.0 and 217.0-foot horizons had average 0.02 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 1.0 feet. One of the final samples taken between the 219.0 and 220.0-foot horizons had average 0.07 oz. of gold (Au) per ton over 1.0 feet.
Other preparations were also started on the old two-compartment shaft, that resulted in removing the bulk head. A minor amount of high-grade ore was taken out but little work had been done during the operating year of 1951, as the mine remained closed. Prior to the suspension of this work that the northerly ridge had never intersected with the third level workings.
1960 - 1961 - Vermont Mines, Limited
It was in 1960, when Vermont Mines, Limited., had carried out sampling work between November, and December 5, 1960. It was during this time that the main No. 1 shaft was dewatered to the third mining level and a limited sampling program was undertaken. The purpose of this sampling program was aimed at outlining gold ore-zones, and the association of mineralization and rock structure with gold deposition. Only a small portion of the third level workings was sampled and mapped, and a total of 121 samples were taken.
Much of the ongoing sampling program had additionally revealed that the host rocks for the samples with the highest gold grades were in Grey Quartzite. These generally had also varied in width from a few centimeters to 85 cm. It was also concluded that the fault and shear zone did not host significant values in gold grades, and there wasn't any apparent association between the sulfide content, and gold grade. Vermont Mines, had also completed a pace and compass ground magnetic survey, and a partial electromagnetic survey from November, 23, to December, 1, 1959. Much of the survey was run on pace and compass traverses from chained picket lines with readings taken at 100 foot intervals on each traverse and 500 foot line space was conducted. The survey that was done in the area had failed to define any definite geological contacts. A 70 gamma zone was however, identified north of the north baseline, and had been interpreted to indicate a change in geology to a more basic rock type. However, the anomaly was not ground truthed due to the possibility of overburden coverage in the area. A possible fault was however, indicated at the western end of Young Lake on the property. Anomaly H is known as a zone that strike perpendicular to the general strike of the geology of the area, and has an intensify 200 gamma reading. This anomaly was generally considered to be upgraded for potential to host gold mineralization. A total of eight anomalies had been identified with more of them carrying weak readings, and had been parallel to the strike of the local geology.
1968 - 1969 - Shawinigan Mining and Smelting, Limited
A diamond drilling program was additionally carried out in 1968, by Shawinigan Mining, and Smelting, that resulted in driving three diamond drill holes on the property. Most of the work was mainly aimed at testing the copper, nickel, copper, gold, and PGE values on the property. This at the time had resulted in lower grade ore values in copper, nickel, silver, and gold.
Hole No. 1 had been collared at an angle of 60 degrees, and would reach a total footage of 116 feet. One of the first assays taken between the 0 to 5.0 feet had average 0.06% Cu, 0.05% Ni, 0.29 oz. Ag, and 0.01 oz. Au per ton over 5.0 feet. A second sample taken between the 5.0- and 10.0 foot horizons had indicated an average of 0.06% Cu, 0.06% Ni, 0.25 oz. Ag, and 0.01 oz. Au per ton over 5.0 feet. A third sample that was taken between 10.0 and 15.0 foot horizons had average 0.03% Cu, 0.03% Ni, 0.08 oz. Ag, and 0.005 oz. Au per ton over 5.0 feet. This would also result in taking a sample from between the 15.0 and 20.0-foot horizons that average 0.01% Cu, 0.01% Ni, 0.08 oz. Ag, and 0.01 oz. Au per ton over 5.0 feet. Another sample was taken between the 20.0 and 25.0-foot horizons that resulted in an average grade of 0.01% Cu, 0.01% Ni, 0.09 oz. Ag, and 0.015 oz. Au per ton over 5.0 feet. One last sample was taken between the 35.0 and 50.0-foot horizon that resulted in 0.05% Cu, 0.03% Ni, 0.08 oz. Ag, and 0.01 oz. Au per ton over 15.0 feet. PGE had ranged less than 0.002 oz per ton. Most of the other diamond drill holes had also contained less than 2% Sulphides to be deemed worthy of assaying.
1973 - 1974 - Rodney Gold Mines, Limited.
Rodney Gold Mine Limited, had came to agreements with Vermont Mines, Ltd, to option the property, and carry out a minor amount of work. It was during 1968, when a geological survey was conducted on the north-south, pace, and compass lines, at 300-foot separations. This was done by conducting a carefully establish pace control line along the wagon road through the property. Further work was aimed at studying all the old maps, surveys. assay plans, drill plans, and magnetometer survey.
1995 - 2012 - Peter G. Blue
On going prospecting work was additionally carried out on the property that resulted in operating a goldspeare, and traversing the two claimed area. Work that was done on these two claim areas was mainly focus to 121029, and 121027. It would also result in further follow up samples that were taken from the property, and only minior assay values were reported on surface. A goldspeare that was operated had also indicated low readings, that resulted in only traces of gold. However, prospecting work did identify various high-kimberlite minerals on the property. Results from this work had additionally resulted in the staking of another 14 claims that were taken up on September, 1995.
During 1997, Peter Blue had conducted sampling and would also operate a goldspeare on claims 121027 and 121028. All of these had rather indicated low readings that were mainly soil anomalies containing low levels of gold. Samples that were collect had range in low grades that average 5 ppm Co, 4 ppm Cr, 5 ppm Cu, 5 ppm Fe, 3 ppm Li, 20 ppm Mg, 5 ppm Ni, 50 ppm P, 2 ppm Y, 2 ppm Zn, and 5 ppm Au.
Prospecting was also continued in 1998, that resulted in two days of Goldspeare work that was reported on claim 121028 in 1996. The work that was conducted had been outside of the area being prospected in 1998. Two days of goldspeare work had also been carried out on claim 1210828 during the year of 1997. Most of the work was reportedly done along the olivine dyke, and had been generally overlapped to some extent by the work reported in 1998. It was from this work that testing of the area had been quite low due to lower indications of gold in the area, and other precious metals.
One of the main structures on the property is the Murray Fault that extends from Sudbury to Sault Ste. Marie, as so far indicated. The Murray Fault system is known to commonly pass through the northern part Shakespeare Township, and is situated to the north of the Shakespeare Gold Property. A high ridge of granite lies to the north of the property as its becomes the main mass of igneous rock in the area. To the south of the property, its known to be mainly occupied by banded quartzite and Greywacke, in which its considered to be altered in places. Some of the small basic dykes cut the quartzite, and cross-fracturing or small faults that are also indicated. Folding is also largely evident in places, and near the centre of the ridge where the quartzite become replaced by quartz stringers. Much of the gold values are generally concentrated on this area of the ridge, which is mixed with a lining of pyritization in place.
One of the principal features of the area is wide zone of quartzite which is host rock to the gold ore found in the old mine workings. The strike of this vein is known to be 50 degrees to the north-east, and has a vertical dip. Quartzite in the area Is generally light grey-white and siliceous with fair amounts of feldspar. It’s also well banded and the bands usually are considered to show some contortion from folding.
A large zone of gabbro is known to intruded the area immediately to the south of the quartzite Gabbro in the area is generally considered to be dark green, medium to coarse grained rock that grades occasionally close to a diorite, and a quartz-diorite. The area had largely been altered locally to high schist and a garnetifereous schist. This quartz-gabbro contact that occurs is generally considered to be quite evident with the Avon Tunnel on claim 110490. Gabbro near the contact was considered to be quite chilled, and altered in various places. A three-foot wide, rusty shear zone, had also formed much of the contact zone in the general area. Quartzite was additionally found along the south shore of the lake on the property. It is quite similar to the northern zone of quartzite but rather differs in strike and dip. The strike on this quartzite zone is known to commonly average 75 degrees azimuth and the dip being approximately 75 degrees to the south.
Upon observation its revealed that the area has very minor trace of pyrite that were seen in the northern zone of the quartzite. Several specks of covellite were also observed in the area. Gabbro commonly showed traces of pyrite and minor traces of chalcopyrite that were located.
One of the main structure on the Shakespeare Gold Mine property, is a ridge of NE-SW striking metamorphosed, sedimentary series of quartzite, greywacke, and fine conglomerate schist. The only intrusive observed on the property are basic, being a coarser gabbro to the south, and several narrow, altered, fine grained lamprophyre dykes. The quartzite in some places is very light in colour, and with increasing basic material, and less silica, grades into greywacke so that the contact in many cases are purely arbitrary. Where impure, the quartzite is a schistose with muscovite, and chlorite that’s more basic. The greywacke had been also highly altered to a chlorite, mica schist. Much of it was originally a fine conglomerate, and where less altered, the original fragmental form can still be observed.
A total of three main faults were observed, and are indicated on the accompanying assay plan of the third level. The strike of these faults are reported to be approximately east-west and their average dip being about 65 degrees to the north. The fault zone consist of strong shearing, dark grey to black in colour, that’s quite soft with some talo, and much sericite. Minor faulting is known to also occur in a near horizontal plane, that is abundant. The Faulting that was observed to the west end of the 301 drift been reported to be quite complex.
The area is also hosted by narrow shear zone, with a high sericite content, and vary from one inch to a foot in width. Generally they appear to run with the strike and dip of the quartzite in the general area. Minor pyrite and very little chalcopyrite mineralization appears to be associated with the faulting, and shearing as the mineralization seems to be more concentrated in the areas of faulting, and shearing.
On the third level of the No. 1 shaft, it was reported that only quartzite was observed as the only rock type in the sampled area. It had also varied from white to dark grey in colour, and from a brittle and well fractured rock to a very hard chert-like one. The quartzite on the third level is known to generally show gneissic landing with minor contortion, and the strike being approximately 60 degrees, and the dip is near vertical.
On the east lawn of the museum, you will find an interesting relic of early farming: a McCormick
Deering sickle-bar hay mower.
The model #7 was “state of the art” technology in 1929 when it was put on the market. It was a big
improvement over the #6 model in that it was horse drawn and had oil bath enclosed gears. There were many
options for knives, sections, and guards.
Museum volunteer Bill Berry has made wooden covers for the blades to protect visitors from harm.
From the Massey Area Museum Newsletter
Did you know that, from the 1960s until 1985, there was a cooperage (a barrel or commercial drum factory), located in this township?
The business was situated just across the tracks at the corner of Highway 17 and Government Road. It was not locally owned with the original owner being the International Cooperage Company of Stony Creek, Ontario. They manufactured steel drums or barrels for use in the mining industry in the Elliot Lake and Sudbury’s INCO mines.
Huge coils of steel came by rail from Algoma Steel in Sault Ste. Marie and from DOFASCO in Hamilton. These were moved by electric cranes and cut and welded together into steel drums of different sizes. Bottoms and lids were fabricated and the bottom welded on. After that, they were painted and put into a roaster oven to dry the paint. The finished barrels were sent out by truck and rail to Sudbury and Elliot Lake.
There were four or five different sizes of drums. They were used to hold blasting powder and the 45- gallon drums that went to Elliot Lake were used to ship uranium to Norway for processing.
At the height of its activity, the factory provided jobs for about 25 local people. By the time it closed, there were only about 10 workers left.
With the closing of the Elliot Lake mines, there was not enough business to sustain the operation and it closed in 1985. Today, the property is owned by Huron Central Railway.
Do you have any personal memories or photos to share of the cooperage? Email our webmaster, Jayson Stewart, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
My brother George and I attended a pre-Christmas session at the Presbyterian Church (although we were regular attendees at the United Church). Christmas was a HUGE celebration for us and the knowledge that we would receive a Christmas "package" if we participated in the Christmas Celebration at the Presbyterian Church was irresistible. Yes, we were well rewarded when each child in attendance received a bag of Christmas goodies. That would have been in 1955 or 1956.
The Massey Continuation School yard was an ideal spot for kids to play back in the 1950's. The school ball diamond, nothing more than the three bases and a home plate, was right beside and much too close to the Presbyterian Church. Usually, the shutters were closed to protect the side windows of the church.
How amazed we were watching the Burns' boys (Richard, Fred and Larry) and the Houles (Fred and Don) all older than the Cassie boys... batting the ball well into the pine trees on the hill behind. Right out of the park!
I remember playing pick-up baseball there one Saturday when George Cuthbertson and Bobby Hobbs dropped by and joined in. How sad that they were killed at a railway crossing a few years later.
All under the watch of Massey Presbyterian Church.
I attended church when I stayed weekends with my grandmother, Margaret Honorine (Cadotte) Darby. She played the organ and I would sit up in the front seat on the right hand side so she would keep her eye on me. This would probably be in the mid 50's.
When I was in bed with measles, the Sunday school sent a basket with something to open each day. I still have one of the items sixty years later - a wooden plaque with a bible quote on it.
This ongoing blog is a collection of articles and photos written by volunteers, staff and you, about the history of our region!