Waihi Gold Mines:
1878 - 1988

Some facts and figures

Discovery
1878 McCombie & Lee discover gold but are unable to find backers for project.
1879 William Nichol stakes a claim on the Martha Lode, so named after a relative.

Claims registered
1880 Amaranth, Dulcibel, Rosemont, Martha, Union, Winner, Brittania, Old Waihi, Silverton, Nelson & Nut, Young Colonial.

Drilled or Mined Unsuccessfully
Waihi Beach, Waihi Extended, Waihi Monument, Favona-Brilliant, Queen of Waihi, Waihi Consolidated, Waihi Reefs, Waihi South, Gladstone.

Cornish Pumphouse, Waihi

Photo: The Cornish Pumphouse at the end of its working life. The poppet head for No.5 shaft can also be seen. This shaft descended to 1309 ft.

Producing Companies and Values

1882 - 1886 Martha Company, Martha Extended Company £ 17,370
1885 - 1887 Union Company £ 2,375
1885 - 1889 Rosemont Company
£ 932
1886 - 1889 Silverton Company £ 48,346
1887 - 1902 Union Waihi, Rosemont, Silverton Waihi Companies £ 107,048
1887 - 1954 Waihi Gold Mining Co. (after 1935 Martha Gold Mining Co.) £ 28,469,011
1893 - 1896 Cassels Company (tailings) £ 19,285
1897 - 1939 Waihi Grand Junction Company £ 2,739,623
  TOTAL £ 31,403,981

Employment

Waihi/Martha Gold Mining Company:

1885 238
1902 1141
1907 1500
1935 646
1948 481
1951 401

Waihi Grand Junction:

1906 238
1910 462
1925 385
1936 7

 

Underground Miners, Waihi

Photo: Underground goldminers at crib. A welcome break during a long shift.

 

Batteries and Treatment Plants:

1882 Martha, near No.4 shaft and Junction Rd. Abandoned due to low head of water.
1882 Manukau Jones Battery near Mangatoetoe Stream junction with Ohinemuri River.
Later became the Silverton and then later the Union.
1889 Waihi Gold Mining Co. at the foot of Union Hill. 1892 60 stamps, 1894 90 stamps.
1892 Victoria Battery, Waikino, 200 stamps.
1896 Grand Junction, 40 stamps, extended 1913.

Waihi Gold Mining Company (later the Martha Gold Mining Company):

Total length of tunnels     approx 110 miles (190 km)
Deepest level     1910 ft (600 m)
Total ore tonnage     11,931,047 tons
Peak production (1909)     £ 959,594
First Waikato hydro station     Horahora 1913
Ratio of silver to gold by weight     approx 7.5 to1

School of Mines:

1897 - 1905 Director - P.G.Morgan
1905 - 1946 Director - A.H.V.Morgan

Waihi Gold Museum & Art Gallery © 2012
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