Archive | Global Mining History

‘Get on with your jobs’: Keir Starmer takes aim at Rhodes row Oxford dons after they refused to teach students – by Eleanor Harding (Daily Mail – June 15, 2021)

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/

Sir Keir Starmer has demanded Oxford dons ‘get on with their jobs’ after they refused to teach students in a row over a statue of Cecil Rhodes. The Labour leader told academics it was unfair to punish ‘hard-hit’ students in their quest to remove the colonialist.

He waded into the furore after 150 lecturers threatened to stop tutorials for Oriel College students until the statue is removed from its building.

When asked yesterday if he supported the dons, Sir Keir urged them to end their boycott immediately. He told LBC News: ‘Get on with the job of teaching people. Let’s get our feet back firmly on the ground and teach the students. Continue Reading →

Stanford Historian Traces Colonial Origins of Conflict Diamonds in Namibia – by Sandra Feder (The Namibian – April 14, 2021)

https://www.namibian.com.na/

WHEN STANFORD historian Steven Press was trying to unearth hidden narratives about Germany’s colonial activities in South West Africa’s highly secretive diamond industry, he pursued that age-old maxim to “follow the money”.

Steven Press is an assistant professor of history in the School of Humanities and Sciences. His new book, Blood and Diamonds, traces the devastating cost of diamond mining and German colonial domination in Namibia during the late 18th and 19th centuries.

Chasing that trail led to some disturbing discoveries about the full extent of Germany’s ruthlessness as it pursued its economic aspirations in the African country now known as Namibia in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Continue Reading →

More drilling planned at Donlin this year – by Staff (MiningWeekly.com – March 29, 2021)

https://www.miningweekly.com/

Donlin Gold, the 50:50 joint venture between Barrick Gold and Novagold Resources, has confirmed a follow-up drill programme for the Alaska project this year, following the strong outcome of its 2020 campaign.

Additional confirmation and extension drilling is planned, with specifics to be finalised once all assay results from the 2020 drill programme have been integrated into an interim model update.

Thereafter, the focus will shift to updating the feasibility study. Barrick and Novagold last week announced the final assay results from the 2020 drill programme, which the companies said exceeded expectations. Continue Reading →

From gold in Wales to tin in Cornwall and amber in Suffolk, no wonder Britain is known as TREASURE ISLAND – by Simon Heptinstall (Daily Mail – March 20, 2021)

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/

How do you guarantee a UK holiday full of precious memories? By visiting our best gold and silver mines of course. Here you’ll delve deep into the history of mining, explore tunnels, pan for gold, learn fascinating facts about geology and our landscape – and buy (or find) treasure to take home.

Head first to the hills of Wales where gold has been mined at Dolaucothi in Carmarthenshire for millennia. Today’s gold-hunters and history fans can explore tunnels built by Roman slaves which only closed for mining in the 1930s (nationaltrust.org.uk/dolaucothi-gold-mines). After exciting underground tours, pan for gold and browse the National Trust shop for jewellery.

The Trust also owns the nearby 16th Century Dolaucothi Arms, a Countryfile Country Pub Of The Year, with simply decorated Arts and Crafts rooms. B&B costs from £70 a night (dolaucothiarms.co.uk). Continue Reading →

[History of Silver Mining] The Manila Galleon Trade: Events, effects, lessons – by Ma. Isabel Ongpin (Manila Times – March 3, 2017)

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THE Manila Galleon Trade lasted for 250 years and ended in 1815 with Mexico’s war of independence. In terms of longevity alone, plus the trade that it engendered between Asia, Spanish America and onward to Europe and Africa, it brought in its wake events and movement of people among the various continents that are still apparent and in place today.

It made Mexico a world city. The Philippines, ostensibly a Spanish colony, was governed from Mexico which gave it an Asian extension. Population flows between Asia and Spanish America via Acapulco were, in terms of the times, huge.

About 40,000 to 60,000, maybe 100,000, mostly Chinese and in particular Filipinos, made up that flow. There is an existing Filipino presence in Louisiana and definitely in Mexico from those times. Some of the founders of California seem to be of Filipino descent. Emiliano Zapata, the Mexican revolutionary, was said to have Filipino ancestry. Continue Reading →

How silver changed the world – by Adolfo Arranz and Marco Hernandez (South China Morning Post – May 27, 2018)

https://multimedia.scmp.com/

The main objective behind the sea route plied by Spanish galleons was to establish trade with China. These European vessels became known as China Ships. They transported silver from the Americas to exchange for goods in Asia, mostly commodities of Chinese origin

It can be argued that when Spain instituted a common currency in the form of the Real de a Ocho, also known as Pieces of Eight, or the Spanish dollar, globalisation’s first chapter had been written. The acceptance of the dollar coins for commercial transactions throughout Asia, the Americas and much of Europe, resulted in a cultural exchange between nations, as well as the relatively free movement of people and goods between the three continents.

China had an appetite for silver …

When the Spanish tried to establish commercial ties with China they found little taste for goods from the outside world. However, it transpired the Chinese had a voracious appetite for silver. In fact, during the latter part of the 16th century, during the Ming Dynasty, Beijing ruled taxes should be paid in silver, and without domestic recourse to the precious metal, the demand for imported silver soared. Continue Reading →

[Scotland] Looking back at the mining history of the Lothians and legacy of pit closures – by Alasdair Clark (Edinburgh Live – February 21, 2021)

https://www.edinburghlive.co.uk/

A new book is shining fresh light on Lothians mining history, examining the impact of pit closures on local communities like those in Midlothian.

Written by Dr Ewan Gibbs, a historian from Glasgow, the book focusses on central Scotland and the communities that “owe their existence” to the rapid expansion of coal mining in Scotland.

It promises to examine the impact of the closure of Scotland’s coal mines, and the subsequent deindustrialization of communities which were once centred around coal mining. Continue Reading →

[Slovakia Mining History] Liptov’s gold rush: Magurka – by Gabriela Psotková and Valéria Polovková (Slovak Spectator – January 4, 2021)

https://spectator.sme.sk/

On August 16, 1896, an American prospector named George Carmack and his Tagish wife Kate Carmack were travelling south of the Klondike River. Following a suggestion from Robert Henderson, a Canadian prospector, they began looking for gold on Bonanza Creek, then called Rabbit Creek, one of the Klondike’s tributaries.

And boy did they discover gold, which was present along the river in huge quantities. By the end of August, all of Bonanza Creek had been claimed by miners from all world.

In Slovakia, gold was already been mined by the Celts. The first mining towns of central Slovakia were established in the 13th century by the Germans. Continue Reading →

Along Russia’s ‘Road of Bones,’ Relics of Suffering and Despair – by Matilda Coleman (UpNewsInfo.com – November 22, 2020)

https://upnewsinfo.com/

The Kolyma Highway in the Russian Far East once delivered tens of thousands of prisoners to the work camps of Stalin’s gulag. The ruins of that cruel era are still visible today.

The prisoners, hacking their way through insect-infested summer swamps and winter ice fields, brought the road, and the road then brought yet more prisoners, delivering a torrent of slave labor to the gold mines and prison camps of Kolyma, the most frigid and deadly outpost of Stalin’s gulag.

Their path became known as the “road of bones,” a track of gravel, mud and, for much of the year, ice that stretches 1,260 miles west from the Russian port city of Magadan on the Pacific Ocean inland to Yakutsk, the capital of the Yakutia region in eastern Siberia. Continue Reading →

How miners from Camborne and Redruth started a Central American football revolution in Mexico – by Aaron Greenaway (Cornwall Live – October 25, 2020)

https://www.cornwalllive.com/

When mention is made of “famous Cornish exports”, it is safe to say that the first things that spring to mind are things we find on our plate – delicacies such as the iconic Cornish pasty, clotted cream, scones made correctly (jam first), Davidstow cheddar and the mighty saffron cake.

It is also true we exported Prime Ministers to Australia, with two Australian Prime Ministers being of Cornish descent – Sir Robert Menzies, the country’s longest-serving PM, was part-Cornish through his maternal grandparents and Bob Hawke, PM between 1983-1991, had links to Kernow as well.

On top of this, at least six Premiers of South Australia were also of Cornish descent. One other thing synonymous with Cornwall is of course mining, with the county being world-renowned for its work during the 1800s and early 1900s – although, you wouldn’t know it now, with the old buildings left behind the only relics of a once-proud past. Continue Reading →

Operation Chinchilla Is a Go – by Ed Stoddard and Undark (The Atlantic – October 18, 2020)

https://www.theatlantic.com/

Twenty-five of the endangered rodents are living on top of a multibillion-dollar Chilean gold reserve. Miners are going to great lengths to relocate them.

The short-tailed chinchilla, a high-altitude South American rodent, was hunted almost to extinction in the 19th and 20th centuries for its highly prized fur. It’s now endangered, and one small colony of the species in Chile is worth far more alive than dead, skinned, and dried.

The colony in question sits atop 3.5 million ounces of extractable gold, a resource set to be developed by Gold Fields, a South Africa–based mining company. Continue Reading →

U.K. Exhibition showcasing work of Black miners is unveiled – by David Sedgwick (New Post Leader – October 7, 2020)

https://www.newspostleader.co.uk/

Digging Deep, Coal Miners of African Caribbean Heritage presents recently unearthed stories and memories of former coal miners of Black and African-Caribbean heritage within UK mining history.

The exhibition at Woodhorn Museum, in Ashington, is part of Black History Month, which runs until October 31.

It forms part of the Black Miners Museum Project – led by Nottingham News Centre CIC – which aims to grow lasting partnerships with mining museums across the UK by celebrating and remembering coal miners of Black and African-Caribbean heritage. Continue Reading →

How the US government seized all citizens’ gold in 1930s – by Chris Colvin and Philip Fliers (The Conversation – May 21, 2020)

https://theconversation.com/

Chris Colvin is a Senior Lecturer in Economics, Queen’s University Belfast and Philip Fliers is a Lecturer in Finance, Queen’s University Belfast.

With global financial markets in disarray, many investors are turning to classic safe havens. Gold is trading above US$1,750 (£1,429) per troy ounce, which is the standard measure – more than 15% above where it started 2020.

Even after a strong rally since March, the S&P 500 stock market index is down nearly 10% over the same period.

Gold confers familiarity during downturns. Its returns are uncorrelated with assets like stocks, so it tends to hold its value when they fall. It is also a good way of avoiding currency devaluation. Continue Reading →

Review: Worn by Tools and Time is a beautifully produced history of metal mining in Wales – by Jon Gower (Nation Cymru – August 22, 2020)

https://nation.cymru/

The time frame of the metal-mining endeavours chronicled in this beautifully-produced book reach way, way back into prehistory. Around 2000 BC the copper mine at Ross Island in Ireland ran out of metal which provoked a widespread hunt for new sources.

As a consequence therefore, in the Early Bronze Age, some of the earliest metal mines in Britain opened in Mid Wales, with stone hammers and wedges used to open up the earth.

They found metals other than copper such as tin and by the time the industry was modernised, with the creation of an institution called the Society of Mines Royal in 1568, silver was being successfully sought in a range of places such as Cwmystwyth, Goginan and Cwmerfyn. Continue Reading →

The search for Kolar’s gold – by Shrabonti Bagchi (Live Mint – February 29, 2020)

https://www.livemint.com/

A multimedia project explores the lives and music of Cornish miners who made Kolar, in Karnataka, their home in the early 20th century

One rainy evening in the summer of 2018 in Cornwall, UK, Laura Garcia was watching a documentary about Indian music on the BBC, wondering if there was any link between this tiny part of England—with its distinctive culture and language—and India. Curious, she did a Google search.

Garcia wasn’t expecting to find anything but after a few pages of inconclusive results, she stumbled upon a cursory mention of Cornish miners making their way to a small town in southern India to work in the country’s only gold fields in the early 20th century. The find kicked off an obsession for Garcia, a member of Cornishfolk band The Rowan Tree.

The history and movement of the Cornish diaspora is well documented but the stories of the miners who went to the Kolar Gold Fields (KGF), now in Karnataka, are not as well known as, say, the histories of those who went to Australia or Canada. Continue Reading →