Delaware Mine

“The Delaware is a mine with a long and convoluted history, so much so that it suffers from a rather chronic and cumbersome identity crisis. As is the case with most mines along the Keweenaw, the mine’s ownership and corporate status were constantly evolving along with its fortunes (or lack thereof). In the Delaware’s case, however, those changes and evolutions were far more numerous and short lived. All in all the mine we know today as the Delaware has had over six owners and was known by just as many names. To make matters worse the area on which the Delaware sits was home to over a half dozen mines at one time or another, all working a tight collection of fissure veins which make their way under the ridge line. In fact the “Delaware Mine” that you can currently tour was in actuality worked by a completely different mining company. Its all enough to confuse even the best local historians, not to mention those copper country explorers who happen to write their own daily blog on their exploits.”

The Immortal Remains

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The Conglomerate Mine was the Delaware’s last hope, but it was attempt that was equally as short lived as its predecessors. In just four short years the company burned through over a million dollars of capital with no profit to be made. It would close its doors in 1884 and …

Worth the Price of Admission (p2)

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While impressive, the old pump house ruins aren’t the only remains of the Conglomerate Mine operation to be found along the Delaware Mine surface tour. If you continue on past those ruins and follow the marked path farther into the surrounding forest you’ll soon find yourself looking out at an even …

Worth the Price of Admission (p1)

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Traveling into the Keweenaw northern reaches will eventually bring you to a large sign along the road adorned with the a small wooden shaft house. The sign directs your attention down a side road, noting the presence of a mine tour. Following its advice you find yourself rumbling along an …

Delaware Revisited

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Last week we wrapped up our exploration of the Delaware location, including the Amygdaloid, Northwest, Delaware, and Conglomerate mines. Today we’ll take another look, but this time through the eyes of fellow CC explorer Paul Meier and his grandfather Fredrick Haun. We’ll start with Paul, who snapped the photo above …

Delaware: A Site Tour (p3)

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We finish up our series examining the Delaware / Conglomerate Mine’s landscape with a look at some of the odd’s and ends scattered across the area… So far we’ve focused in on six main areas of the Delaware / Conglomerate Mine’s landscape. These included the old Delaware Mine, the Conglomerate …

Delaware: A Site Tour (p2)

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We continue our look at the landscape of the Delaware / Conglomerate Mine area, focusing this time on the Conglomerate’s surface structures down the hill form the mine itself… Warehouse and Manger’s Rows Sitting along the stagecoach road that once connected the Conglomerate to the Amygdaloid and Connecticut mines to …

Delaware: A Site Tour (p1)

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With our exploration of the Delaware / Conglomerate Mine now complete I thought it would be helpful to take one last look at the old mine site – this time in terms of the mine’s surface plant layout. The area of land we know today as Delaware is in fact …

The Compressor House

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The Conglomerate Mine spared no expense in the construction of a formidable surface plant for its aspiring mine. Along with the usual collection of boilers and hoisting equipment, the company also built itself a seven mile railroad – complete with two locomotives and a generous supply of rock cars – …

The Rock House

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Leaving the Delaware’s superintendents house behind, we cut through the adjacent woods for a short spell before emerging on the edge of a large poor rock pile. The pile had been largely bulldozed flat, leaving a carpet of ragged red colored rock along the ground. The old rock pile sat …

A Rare Find

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When it comes to Copper Country exploring there’s a level of familiarity to everything you find along the way. The most common site is the poor rock pile, every mine has at least one and you’ll never find a mine site without one. Next up would be the hoist foundation, a …

Walls & Foundations (p2)

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Leaving the Delaware’s store house behind we found ourselves standing along one leg of an unique “Y” intersection, that connects Delaware Road with an unnamed road that connects up with the highway. For all intents and purposes this is Delaware’s industrial core, where the mine’s collection of support buildings were …

Walls & Foundations (p1)

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The area we had entered upon the discovery of the warehouse was rich in ruin. Scattered about within sight were the remains of about four separate structures, some more impressive then others. The most impressive (and intact) was the warehouse, while the remaining ruins were essentially only glorified foundations. But …

A Delawarehouse

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Leaving the old Delaware fissure behind we continued on down the road towards the Conglomerate Mine – known today for being home to the Delaware Mine tours. After only a short walk down said road we discovered a rather impressive rock wall standing tall alongside the road in a grove …

At the Fissure

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The Delaware Fissure was first worked by the Northwest in 1847, at which time it was known as the Northwest Fissure. In 1863 the Delaware took over production at the vein and continued to work the fissure down to its 9th level. Very little copper was found, and attention was …

On the Way to Delaware

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Leaving the Amygdaloid Mine behind we walk down the road towards our next mine on the tour – the Delaware. But first we pass by the old Connecticut site, which entails not much more than a scattered poor rock pile sitting alongside the road. The pile had been worked over …

Mines of the Delaware Region

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The Delaware is a mine with a long and convoluted history, so much so that it suffers from a rather chronic and cumbersome identity crisis. As is the case with most mines along the Keweenaw, the mine’s ownership and corporate status were constantly evolving along with its fortunes (or lack …