A successful Ontario graphite mine is forever submerged under Black Donald Lake
Before the 1867 construction of the road that led deep into the Black Donald Mountains, located about 120 kilometres west of Ottawa, the untamed region was considered wild by settler society. Eventually the growth of immigrant populations in the Ottawa area forced a westward expansion of Opeongo Road and soon Irish, Poles and Germans settled the region.
John Moore was one of the first European settlers of the mountainous frontier. He was offered a plot of land near Whitefish Lake. One day in 1889, while strolling on his property, he slipped on a rocky outcrop and made a life-changing discovery. A sampling of the brittle dark rock confirmed Moore had uncovered a graphite deposit.
Graphite was much needed in the industrialized 19th century. The mineral is heat-resistant, making it an ideal lubricant for motors and a good liner in crucibles containing molten steel. Continue Reading →