Virginia metal mining includes significant quantities of lead, zinc and iron. Virginia also produces coal and oil. Virginia metal production is small compared with that of many other states. Report 7 lists 496 mines and prospects that were scattered from one end of the other. Notes concerning the mines are mostly from this Report.
Notes on collecting:
There are comparatively few Virginia mining certificates available. This makes collecting in the commonwealth interesting. Of the 496 mines and prospects listed in Report 7, comparatively few list a company was responsible for the mining activity. In addition, many of the listings predate standard references which may be accessed through Google. Interest in Virginia mining does not appear high. As a result Virginia might be considered a low supply / low demand state for collecting purposes. Prices are somewhat variable and it would be a good idea to study the market prior to making a purchase.
Beginning our Journey …
We will first look at the Virginia Gold Belt which is part of the East Coast Gold Belt which extends through the Piedmont from Alabama to Maryland.
The Bertha and Edith Mine operated in Goochland County (west of Richmond). The mine was active both prior to and after the Civil War. Placers were operated in 1937.
The Vauchuse Mine is located near the Wilderness Battlefield in Orange County. It was worked by several companies over the years. The mine was opened as a placer in 1832. In 1844 the Liberty Mining Company of London purchased the mine and began underground development. The mine was operated by other companies during the Great Depression.
The Eagle Mine is located in Stafford County. It was operated by the Rappahannock Gold Mining Company between 1834 and 1894.
The Franklin Mine is located in Fauquier County. It was opened in 1837 and operated until 1904. The certificate is believed to be from an unsuccessful 1914-15 effort to revive the mine. The mine was last explored in 1934-35. Some of the equipment has been taken the Monroe Park Gold Mining Museum where a replica depression era gold camp and replica mine are being developed.
To be continued….