Report – George Crawhall to Martin Morrison – 30 Dec 1817

Document Type: Report
Date: 30 Dec 1817
Correspondent: George Crawhall
Recipient: Martin Morrison
Archive Source: NRO 672 E 1F 1
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      Weardale Mines

      West district

      Kilhope Mines are no better than last quarter; the low Level mentioned in the last Report is not driven up to the Whimsey Shaft so that we have opened no more fresh ground and little variation have taken place in the old workings; the Bargains consist of 20 Men raising Ore at 30/ pBing.- 

      Guinea Grove has been very good the last quarter which has enabled us to reduce the price pBing in the leading workings, the Water in the workings below the Level has increased very much, and should it continue increasing I am afraid the under Level workings will be entirely lost until a lower Level be taken up.  I have begun the low Level under the four fathoms Limestone that was recommended in the last Report.  The Bargains consist of 8 Men raising Ore at 20/ pBing; 8 Men at 21/ and 20Men at 30/pBing.

      Breckonsike no trials or dead work are going on at this Vein and only 10 Men raising Ore at 30/pBing.

      Burtree Pasture, the workings in this Vein continue tolerably good, but being wrought to a greater depth below the Water Level every quarter causes them to be attended with more expense as the deeper it is wrought the quantity of Water increases which now requires double the number of Men to draw it, than it did three months back.  The vein at the foreend east of the Cross Vein is very poor, and appears much weaker than last quarter, which leads me to think we have not the whole Strength of the Vein and in order to make a further discovery I am induced to continue the south cross cut (which is driving with 8 Men) in expectation of meeting with something better.  The Bargains consist of 28 Men raising Ore at 25/pBing, 22 at 28/ pBing and 100 Men at 30/ pBing.  -  We are purposing putting in an Engine as recommended in the last Report, as expeditiously as possible, we have measured the quantity of water that can be procured to work it, and find the power quite inadequate to work a water wheel ( which would have been preferable to any other construction could it be done) & are under the necessity of putting in a Hydrostatic Engine, similar to that at Coalcleugh, which will be done at less expense & I expect will answer the purpose.

Sedlin Vein continues very poor and little alteration in the foreheads.  We are approaching with the Levels near to some ground that was more productive in the upper strata which gives us expectation of improving.   We are also sinking a Sump 30fms before the last one but have not yet tried the Vein.  The Bargains consist of 40 Men raising Ore at 30/pBing.

      East district

      Level gate . The workings in this Vein are rather poorer the last quarter, and we are opening no fresh ground at the forend in consequence of the Waggon Level not being up to the foremost workings and the back ground working out; of course We must expect the produce less for some time.  We have sunk a Sump through the four fathom Limestone which I had great expectation of, but it has a bad appearance for raising Ore and not being satisfied with this trial I have begun another Sump about 40fms distant from the other, which will make a satisfactory trial in the Limestone.  The Bargains consist of 6 Men raising Ore at 24/pBing, 8 Men at 25/, 28men at 28/ and 80 Men at 30/ pBing.

      Blackdean.  The workings in this Vein are very poor and no new trials on hand: the Waggon Level is going forward in the Vein and 28 Men raising Ore at 30/pBing.

      Elmford.   The old Level is opened to such a distance that the Men are unable to bank the work without the assistance of a Horse; we are now enlarging the Level to put in a Horse which will bank the work at one half of the expense and be of farther advantage in drawing Old Dead &c which generally produced a quantity of Ore from old wrought Mines; 8 Men are raising Ore at 30/pBing.

      Longtyhead   Is it yet so good as last quarter, but I can not see any cause why it may not be as productive as it had been; the Level is going forward in the Vein and 14 Men raising Ore at 30/pBing.

      Barbary is some better than last quarter, the Vein in the Level forehead is stronger and contains more Ore, which gives Us hopes that it may be productive again, 16 Men are raising Ore at 30/pBing.

      Slitt Vein.- After examining the situation of the Level forehead particularly, and finding them so very poor, hard, and want of Air., We thought them unworthy of expanding money upon them as yet.  We are making a trial in the Quarry Hazel 40fms before the last One, but I think the prospect is not a very good one. - There was formerly an Engine in at Slitfoot, but taken out upwards of fifty years since, and removed to a place at Wearhead, that was more productive at the time and in an immediate want of an Engine.  From the most accurate information I can collect of the situation when left off from some old Miners who were Workmen at the time and place, it appears that the Engine was taken away more for the cause of being wanted at another place than from the actual poverty of this;  and that they recollect other places being left that would work at the prices now given.  I am of the opinion that if an Engine was replaced, there would be no fear of meeting with workings that would answer.   The Bargains in this Vein are 8 Men raising Ore at 30/ pBing.

      Middlehope.  The cross Vein has been very good this last quarter, and continues so in the ground that has been cut through at that time, but Middlehope Shield Level being now holed to the Level to the Governor & Co Vein, in the Cross Vein, will cause this part to be soon wrought out, having no whole ground but flats and the poorest parts of the Vein that is left; the Flats offer to carry Ore very well in some places but in others good for nothing. - the North and South foreheads are both very poor and producing no Ore. -  The Bargains consist of 8 Men raising Ore at 20/pBing; 8 Men at 22/ , 16 Men at 28/; 8 Men at 29/ and 22 men at 30/pBing.

      Earncleugh.- In the Cross-cut begun last quarter to cut a north Vein we have unexpectedly met with a cross vein which has taken the other <> point, and I am now of opinion has also been the cause of the first Vein ceasing to carry Ore.  as we have not cut the Vein at the distance expected, we are continuing the cross cut 10fms farther, but I think it doubtful meeting with anything.

      Greenlaws- has no better appearance than last quarter and has been so long dead and become so expensive that if it does improve in a little time I think it unworthy of persevering in.

      Rookhope district

      Wolfcleugh.   We have got very little done at the trials begun last quarter in consequence of the Engine wheel, being a very old one and having fallen to pieces, and the workings filled with Water; the Wheel is now repaired and set to work, but the Water is not got out.

      Bolts-burn Vein is poorer than last quarter, the Levels are going on and 18 Men raising Ore at 30/pBing. -

                       				Stanhope district

      Crawlah, No alteration has taken place in the workings this quarter, 14 Men are raising Ore at 30/pBing. –

      Yew tree Vein in Bollihope, 4 Men have taken a bargain to raise Lead at 170/ pTon and £12 for opening a Level. - 

                             George Crawhall 
Date not given but sequence in letter book indicates it relates to the last quarter of 1817.

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The Dukesfield Smelters and Carriers Project aimed to celebrate and discover the heritage of the Dukesfield Arches & lead carriers' routes between Blaydon and the lead mines of Allendale and Weardale. A two year community project, it was led by the Friends of the North Pennines in partnership with Hexhamshire and Slaley Parish Councils and the active support of Allendale Estates. It was funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and the generous support of other sponsors. Friends of the North Pennines: Charity No:1137467