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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 41

Mineral Products

Mineral Products.

The mining industry has been largely developed in recent years. In 1879 the quantity of gold produced was 60,155 oz., valued at £230,895; while for the half-year ending 30th June, 1880, the quantity was 34,000 oz., valued at £140,000. The chief centres of gold-mining are:—Beaconsfield, on the west bank of the River Tamar; Nine-Mile Springs, east side of the River Tamar; Back Creek, Denison, and Golconda, on the north-east coast; Lisle, 27 miles to the north-east of Launceston; Mathinna and Mangana, in the Fingal district; and the neighbourhood of the River Pieman, on the west coast. Gold has also been found at Port Cygnet and Oyster Cove, on the south of the island; at various points in the counties of Devon and Wellington; at Waterhouse, on the north-east coast; near Great Mussel Roe and Scamander rivers, on the east coast; and in other places. An unlimited supply of timber of the best description for mining purposes exists on all the goldfields, and the supply of water is generally abundant.

Tin-mining is extensively prosecuted in the north-western and north-eastern districts, and on the west coast. The value of the tin and tin ore exported in 1879 was, in round numbers, £300,000; and the returns for the first half of the year 1880 show a value of £162,000, the yield of ore from Mount Bischoff alone being about 250 tons per month. Other rich undeveloped deposits are known to exist in various parts of the island.

Coal is found in all the settled districts of the south and east, the chief localities being the Fingal Valley, the east coast, Jerusalem, the Midland district, Newtown, Seymour, and D'Entrecasteaux Channel, and at the Mersey and Don rivers on the north coast.

Very rich deposits of iron ore are found all over the island, and limestone and marble of every shade of colour are abundant Lodes of copper and lead (both of them rich in silver), bismuth, antimony, and other metals, are known to exist, but have not yet been extensively worked. The midland and southern districts are noted for their excellent building-stone; the freestone of the new law courts in Melbourne is from quarries near Spring Bay. Good roofing slate is obtained at and near Piper's river, in the north of the island.