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November 4, 2013 / Joanne Yeck

Buckingham Gold: Alcinda Mine

Buckingham_Gold-Mine

Shaft mining in central Virginia, c. 1865 (Harper’s New Monthly Magazine)

On July 14, 1838, a letter to the Editor ran in the Washington D.C. newspaper, Madisonian,  for the Country. It was in response to “extracts from the New York Gazette, on the subject of Gold Mines in Virginia.” The letter discusses several Buckingham County gold mines which were active in 1838 and was signed, simply, BUCKINGHAM.

I trust, sir, that it was not your intention to turn this subject to political account. Sure, I am, you could have had no such purpose in mentioning the employment of foreign capital in our mines…. Of the balance of the gold region I shall not speak, nor of any mines which I have not visited, except that from the information of others, I may safely remark, that if Buckingham does not contain the very best mines in this country, they are certainly not inferior to any.

The following mines I have seen . . . The Morton; the Booker; the Alcinda, or Eldridge; the Ford and Nicholas, and the Ayres….

The Alcinda mine has been opened by the sinking of two shafts, probably fifty feet deep. The vein is the largest I have seen, and is said to be the largest known in this county. The ores yield well, though not so much, perhaps, to the given quality, as those of the Booker. They are easy of access and may be raised in any quantity required, at a smaller expense than is common in small veins. . . Like that of Morton’s, a small creek affords the only motive power applied in crushing the ores.

To be continued….

9 Comments

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  1. Mary Kelly / Nov 5 2013 8:27 am

    I live on Goldmine Street in Dillwyn.

    • Joanne Yeck / Nov 5 2013 11:04 am

      How fun is that? Do you know which mine it refers to?

  2. Kimberly / Nov 5 2013 7:45 am

    At the Historical Village at Lee Wayside, there is a small display about the Buckingham Gold Mines, including a grinding stone from, I think, the Booker mine (BG Booker was my 5th GrGF). I seem to remember a map of the various ones there.

    • Joanne Yeck / Nov 5 2013 7:52 am

      Kimberly, Let’s find a digital version of the Buckingham County gold mine map! A post of the famous Booker coming up next!

      • Kimberly / Nov 5 2013 1:43 pm

        I suppose Martha Louis would be the one to ask about that?

  3. Sue jones / Nov 4 2013 8:37 pm

    Have land

  4. J Winfrey / Nov 4 2013 11:22 am

    I imagine the Ford and Nicholas mines are in the northeastern part of the county, but how about Alcinda (Eldridge) and Ayres? Near the Slate/Rt 20 area possibly?

    • Joanne Yeck / Nov 4 2013 11:29 am

      The newspaper article does not locate the mines. I believe that Alcinda is near Willis Mountain.

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