Central Mill

“The mills built during the Copper Country’s adolescence were small and crude affairs, especially when compared to their massive concrete and steel descendants. There were structures built almost entirely with wood and as such rarely survived through the decades. Because of this, no step-stair concrete levels greeted us as we approached the Central Mill – no large concrete foundations or machine mounts. It’s history was not shouted from atop a concrete pillar – but whispered along small pieces scattered about the ground. Scattered across the gravel floor – among a carpet of sun-bleached wood splinters – were clues to another time. You just had to pay attention.”

Sitting at the End of an Era

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Early stamp mills were a very crude affair. Before the advent of leaching, floatation, Wilfley Tables or buddles, mills relied on only one tried and true technology: the Cornish Stamp. These early stamps relied primarily on gravity to do all of the work. Each stamp consisted of a wooden mortar …

Pieces

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The mills built during the Copper Country’s adolescence were small and crude affairs, especially when compared to their massive concrete and steel descendants. There were structures built almost entirely with wood and as such rarely survived through the decades. Because of this, no step-stair concrete levels greeted us as we …

Sands in the Wilderness

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When mines decided where to place their stamp mills they considered three important factors: a constant supply of water; a large dumping ground for tailings; and the proximity to the mine itself. For the majority of mines up the hill from Torch Lake or the Portage Lake, the decision was …