The 1914 Letter

A clear aim of the Institute as stated in Section I of the Constitution was to help and suggest ways of improving the performance of the mining industry and this was a continuing theme of the Institute’s discussions from the start. As early as the summer of 1914, just a year after its formation, a small group of members wrote a letter to the President suggesting that an assessment should be made of the amount of ore left in the Camborne/ Redruth mining area. After discussion by the Council it was decided to circulate it to members but this was postponed due to the outbreak of war. The letter proposed that the investigation should cover the area extending from West Tolgus to North Dolcoath and from Carn Brea Hill to North Seton and North Pool. It listed the mines operating at that time as: Dolcoath including Wheal Frances, Camborne Vean, Harriet and Stray Park; West Dolcoath Setts including West Stray Park, Wheal Nelson, etc; North Dolcoath with Old West Dolcoath; South Crofty with Wheal Crofty and New Cook’s Kitchen; Carn Brea including Cook’s Kitchen and Tincroft;  East Pool and Wheal Agar. Abandoned Mines listed included West Seton, Wheal Seton, Emily Henrietta, East Seton, North Pool, West Tolgus, North Roskear South Roskear, North Crofty, Illogan Mines, and Wheal Tehidy.

Nothing further was done until after a General Meeting in early November 1915 Mr Trewartha-James announced that the Privy Council would probably be making a substantial grant to help original research concerning the metallurgy of tin and he suggested that the CIE should be included in this scheme.

Following discussion at another General Meeting held on November 27th 1915 the Council met on Dec 1st 1915 with Mr Trewortha-James to discuss the subject of Metallurgical research. The following resolution was agreed:– “That the Secretaries communicate with the Institution of Mining and Metallurgy and with Mr Trewartha-James, intimating that the Cornish Institute of Engineers would like to be associated with the IMM metallurgical research activity and are seriously desirous of placing their services at the disposal of the IMM in the matter; also that the attention of the Council of the IMM be drawn to the Scheme of Geological Investigation prepared by the Council of the CIE with a view to ascertaining whether the geological investigation could be included in the larger forum. This was an agreed version of the paper suggested in the letter decribed above.

The following were appointed to the Cornish Tin and Tungsten Research Committee and were acting in co-operation with the Central Direction Committee in London:
F C Cann, St Ives Consolidated Mines; J Jenner, Hayle; T Knowles, Camborne Mining School; J Paull, South Crofty Mine; A Richards, Cornwall Tailings Company; M T Taylor, East Pool and Agar Mines; Ernest Terrell, Wheal Jewell and Marytavy Mines; P Arthur Thomas, Dolcoath Mine; William Thomas, Tincroft Mine; William Thomas, Market Place, Camborne.”

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