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Rich silver-lead ore was found near Sandon, and thousands of prospectors and fortune hunters poured into the area, lending it its well worn name “The Silvery Slocan.” Mining created towns like Sandon – styling itself the “Paris of the West” – New Denver, and Slocan City. Several smaller settlements sprang up along what is now Highway 31A between New Denver and Kaslo. Competing railway companies rapidly built lines into the mining camps. For a time it seemed the prosperity would last forever.
The Slocan area is one of the oldest mining camps in the province which flourished after the turn of the century and has continued to produce intermittently ever since. The history in the West Kootenays dates back to the 1820’s when the Bluebell deposit (082FNE043), near Riondel on Kootenay Lake was discovered. Active exploration began around 1865. In 1883, Thomas Hammil located the Lulu and Spring claims (082FNE148) at Ainsworth. In the late 1880’s, Jim Brennan, a prospector working west of Ainsworth, collected some high grade silver samples which sparked considerable interest in this new and virtually unexplored area. After initial interest at Sandon, prospectors extended their range of exploration to the south and west, discovering several deposits containing appreciable gold on Memphis Creek and locating the Dayton claim (082FNW173) in 1893 near Slocan City.
Granby Gold Inc.
Suite 615, 700 West Pender St.,
Vancouver, BC V6C 1G8