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"What the Papers Said"

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Shropshire, February 1870

Shropshire, February 1870


Mining Journal, February 26th, 1870 (Suppl. No.1801, Vol XL pp 173-4)
Extracts from a letter signed “J.Randall, Feb. 21, 1870”

Hearing that two or three London Gentlemen, who have just taken a considerable slice of mining ground, were coming down to meet the Lord of the Manor of Shelve and Linley, to go over a portion of the property I gladly accepted an invitation to join them. ....

Singularly enough, we met with a second party, also going in the same direction, and upon the hill a third, who had come down with a similar object from Liverpool to go over the ground, such is the attraction the Shelve district now holds out to those interested in mines. The day chosen was Friday last, a bitter cold day, and one which appeared to grow colder as we ascended the hills, where the snow yet lay in deep drifts, and where sheets of treacherous ice lay in wait for the unwary .....

There seems to be no doubt at all but that the Romans did work these mines. The old openings are still visible on the side of the hill and are not only smaller than modern drifts, but, being more circuitous, they appear to have been made when in the absence of the present means of mining it was necessary to cut round knots of hard rock, such as now would be either cut through or blasted. .... Among other evidences ... it may be mentioned that shovels made of oak, rounded at the end, with a very small knob at the opposite end, and a slanting hole a few inches in advance, as if intended for a handle, have been found in the galleries, three or four of which were shown to us by Mr.Whittal, Mr. Mores mining agent, who also showed us a Roman pig of lead ... which bears the impress in clear Roman characters IMP HADRIAN, AUG ---

Submitted by Ivor Brown

Note: Entitled “The Mining Districts of Shropshire - No.1” this item concludes “I propose addressing you further .... next week”. But it was several weeks before anything else appeared!

Friday last would have been the 18th February 1870 (as the 21st was a Monday)

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