Archive | Canadian Mining History

New book reappraises Silvery Slocan mining rush – by Greg Nesteroff (Nelson Star – July 15, 2020)


The book is available at:

A new book takes a comprehensive look at an era when the Slocan was at BC’s economic and political forefront.

At more than 600 pages, Peter Smith’s self-published Silver Rush: British Columbia’s Silvery Slocan 1891-1900 may intimidate casual readers. But within its pages lies an epic story of the men and women who flocked to the region to ride a wave of sudden prosperity.

Smith’s interest in the Slocan’s history was whetted when he came to the area from Victoria in the mid-1970s. “I thought wow, this place is incredible. Why have I never heard of it? The deeper I dug, the more important the history became.” Continue Reading →

Yukon UNESCO World Heritage bid shifts focus from Gold Rush to colonialism (CBC News North – May 25, 2021)

Three years after withdrawing a bid to become a UNESCO World Heritage site, a local committee in Dawson City, Yukon, is trying again — this time shifting focus from mining and the Klondike Gold Rush to the experience of colonialism by First Nations.

“Tr’ondëk-Klondike as a site tells an exceptional story that reflects Indigenous peoples’ — Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in peoples’ —experience and adaptation to what we know as the phenomenon of European colonialism,” said Lee Whalen, of the Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in First Nation’s heritage department.

“So under the criteria for World Heritage, we are illustrating a significant stage in human history.” Continue Reading →


This 1930s black & white educational/promotional film tells “The Story of Nickel”. It was produced by INCO, the International Nickel Company, Ltd., now known as Vale Canada, Limited. INCO as founded following the discovery of copper deposits in Sudbury, Ontario. During World War II, Inco’s Frood-Stobie Mine Mine produced 40% of the nickel used in artillery by the Allies.

For an extensive writeup about Sudbury’s nickel contributions during World War Two:


[Sponsored] The Gold Rush in Newfoundland (Investing News Network – March 31, 2021)


Canada is one of the world’s leading mining nations, ranking among the top five global producers for minerals such as gold, potash, cadmium, cobalt, graphite, nickel and many others.

In 2019, the country’s total mineral production reached C$48.2 billion. While Ontario and Quebec represent two key mineral exploration jurisdictions within Canada, one major province is often overlooked by investors looking to gain a share of the country’s precious metals sector: Atlantic Canada’s Newfoundland and Labrador.

The discussion around mining in Eastern Canada is often overshadowed by the prolific Abitibi greenstone belt that spans across the border between Ontario and Quebec, but Newfoundland offers one of the most extensive mining histories in Canada, with small-scale mining dating back to the 1770s, expanding into a major industry by the 1860s. Continue Reading →

The only city in Northwest Territories – by A.J. Roan (North of 60 Mining News – March 26, 2021)

Far to the north lies the second largest of Canada’s three territories, simply named the Northwest Territories, and within this vast region of more than 400,000 square miles lies its only city, the capital called Yellowknife.

Yellowknife, and most of the region of the Northwest Territories, lies within what is known as the Canadian Shield, a large area of Precambrian igneous and metamorphic rock, meaning it dates to the earliest part of Earth’s history.

Scoured down to stone during the last ice age, glaciation has receded over time, revealing a joined bedrock region in eastern and central Canada, stretching from north of the Great Lakes to the Arctic Ocean, this shield covers more than half of Canada and most of Greenland, and extends south into the northern parts of the United States. Continue Reading →

OPINION | It’s about time Yukon Rendezvous dropped the colonialist ‘Sourdough’ – by Lori Fox (CBC News North – February 2, 2021)

Yukon’s beloved Gold Rush history is ‘a hot mess of highly questionable colonial behaviour,’ argues Lori Fox

Organizers of the one-time Yukon Sourdough Rendezvous festival — either an all-ages winter carnival or a week-long bender, depending on your proclivities — recently announced they are dropping “Sourdough” from their name, and the festival would be hitherto known simply as “Yukon Rendezvous.”

The decision, they said, was the result of public feedback around the colonial nature of the word.

The name change was met with fury from some Yukoners, many of whom took to social media and called it an “erasure” of Yukon history — by which they mean settler history, specifically that of the Klondike Gold Rush, from which “sourdough,” as a moniker denoting a fortune-seeker who overwintered in the territory, originates. Continue Reading →

Prospector’s wealth was her heart of gold – by Susanna McLeod (Kingston Whig Standard – December 31, 2020)

Adventure takes on many forms. It could be jungle escapes, ziplining or maybe sailing ocean waves. Ellen (Nellie) Cashman’s life was an adventure into gold rushes, establishing businesses, and grubstaking prospectors.

Her work included philanthropy, especially where miners were concerned. A single woman, she earned the respect of stampeders and adoration from the causes she supported.

Cashman took a circuitous route to Canada. When a teenager, Cashman (born circa 1845) immigrated to Boston in about 1860 with her sister and widowed mother. The women were part of a Catholic Irish migration wave searching for a better life. Continue Reading →

They heated with coal in P.E.I.’s Bygone Days (CBC News – November 22, 2020)

Coal from Springhill, N.S., was said to be the best for steam-engine trains

As oil heat falls out of fashion for polluting the environment and heating with wood falls out of fashion for all the back-breaking work involved, more Islanders are turning to electricity, powered in part by wind or solar.

But did you know many homes and businesses were heated with coal in Prince Edward Island’s bygone days?

The black rocks were shipped to the Island on wooden schooners from Cape Breton Island, Pictou and Springhill, N.S., as well as Minto, N.B. Continue Reading →

OBITUARY: Aviation pioneer Max Ward, who built a regional carrier into Canada’s largest charter airline, dies at 98 – by Bob Weber (Globe and Mail – November 4, 2020)

A northern bush pilot who built a regional carrier into Canada’s largest charter airline has died. Max Ward collapsed Monday at his Edmonton home and died in hospital shortly after, surrounded by family. He was 20 days shy of his 99th birthday.

“He’d been in failing health for some time,” said family friend Jacquie Perrin, who confirmed Mr. Ward’s death. “He did his best to hang in for the 99th, but he didn’t quite make it.” It was a rare example of Mr. Ward not reaching his goals.

Born in Edmonton in 1921, Mr. Ward got his pilot’s licence in 1941 during the Second World War, a conflict he spent training fellow pilots across Western Canada under the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan. After the war, with his new bride Marjorie Skelton, he headed north to Yellowknife to fly the Arctic skies. Continue Reading →

Canadian Mining Hall of Fame to Welcome Five New Members in 2021


TORONTO, OCTOBER 22, 2020 – The Canadian Mining Hall of Fame (CMHF) will welcome five extraordinary individuals who have made incredible and lasting contributions to Canada’s mining industry:

• Patricia Dillon
• David Elliott
• William Gladstone Jewitt
• Steven D. Scott
• Mary Edith Tyrrell

Over the past 33 years, the CMHF has recognized 190 exemplary men and women who helped build Canada’s mining industry into the global leader, embodied the important role mining plays in Canadian society and inspired future generations in mining. While the global pandemic has altered plans for the Annual Dinner & Induction Ceremony, the CMHF remains steadfast in its vision to be the enduring source of information that shares the significant contributions of individuals who shape Canada’s global mining industry. Continue Reading →

The Price of Gold – Lessons From Previous Price Cycles – Canadian Business History Association Webinar With Tony Fell, Stan Sudol and Mike Parkins (Albany Club Toronto – September 17, 2020)


Gold has been an alluring commodity for centuries as both an investment, an industrial input, and a consumer product. With the price of gold hitting all-time highs, what can past price cycles reveal about today and the future?

This timely CBHA/ACHA webinar investigates this question from the point of view of three experts. Mr. Tony Fell, past CEO of RBC Dominion Securities joins Mr. Stan Sudol, mining consultant and editor of and Large Cap Mining Analyst Mr. Mike Parkins of National Bank of Canada Financial Markets to provide some insight and answers.

Electric vehicles are a great story, but oil and gas may be the better investment – by Martin Pelletier (Financial Post – October 5, 2020)

Everybody loves a good story especially when it comes to buying and selling certain themes in the market. This phenomenon is more apparent now than ever as investors herd into those segments telling the best story while selling those that tell a bad one.

This type of dualistic thinking is only widening the gap between the have and the have nots, when in reality the truth isn’t black and white but often some shade of grey.

A great example of this is what is happening with the electric vehicle and oil and gas industries. We don’t think it’s a coincidence that companies such as Tesla are setting new highs pushing the boundaries of euphoric valuations as investors are eager to drink the peak oil demand Kool-Aid that is being accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Continue Reading →

Wanted: stories, memories and tales from the Inco strike of 1958 (CBC News Sudbury – September 22, 2020)

Elizabeth Quinlan wants to hear from people who lived through the 3-month strike

A professor of social studies in Saskatchewan is putting a call-out for stories from people who remember the Inco strike of 1958.

The strike involved 17,000 workers who were part of Mine Mill — then, one of the largest unions in Canada — who were pitted against Inco, a powerful company supplying 90 per cent of the world’s nickel.

Elizabeth Quinlan from the University of Saskatchewan is writing a book about the historic event and is looking for anyone who has memories of being affected by the strike. Continue Reading →

Timmins-James Bay MP Charlie Angus announces new book about Cobalt: the town and the metal – by Lydia Chubak (CTV Northern Ontario – September 13, 2020)

TIMMINS — He’s a member of parliament, a musician and an author. Timmins-James Bay MP (NDP) Charlie Angus has written a new book–his eighth–and this time, it’s focussed on the town of Cobalt which he calls ‘the cradle of Canada’s mining industry.’

It’s not out yet, but he said he’s already signed a deal with a national publisher.

“We’re going to see this town play I think and an important role. (Cobalt) is a mineral that should not be the blood mineral and a mineral of such toxic environmental damage but a mineral that could actually lead us to a better and cleaner digital future,” said Angus. Continue Reading →

[MINING HISTORY] Elihu James Davis: He Built the Road to Eldorado – by Leslie Roberts (MACLEAN’S Magazine – November 15, 1930)

An intimate sketch of the man [ Elihu James Davis] whose courage and faith created the T. and N. O., “the discovery railroad which opened Northern Ontario’s treasure chest”

THIS is the story of a man who proved by his foresight and his deeds that politicians do get things done, their traducers to the contrary. What is more, it proves that the smiling goddess, sometimes called Lady Luck, is cast in important roles in the fashioning of any young country, bestowing her favors on those who have the courage to set up new milestones of empire, no matter how the scoffers oppose.

As is the case with all pioneering achievement, it is a story of the faith that moves mountains, of dreams and vision and belief. It is the story of Elihu James Davis, the tanner of Newmarket, whose determination and courage brought into being the Temiskaming and Northern Ontario Railway, hoping thereby to create a new agricultural empire, only to find that Dame Fortune had flung wide the portals to a Canadian Eldorado.

Not even Davis, in the days when the T. and N. O’s. right-of-way was still a figment of fancy, could dream of the riches that were to come. Here was to be a prosperous new farming region, with New Liskeard its market town. Colonists, hearing of the wealth of the soil, would come to join those who were opening up the country. Continue Reading →