Copper Mines in Northern York County
1876 York County atlas showing ore mines east of Dillsburg
Did you know about the copper mines in Carroll Township near Dillsburg? According to a Northern York County Historical and Preservation Society (NYCHAPS) display, the area had 21 iron ore mines, two clay mines, two limestone quarries and three copper mines.
The December 5, 1882 York Gazette carried an item from the Dillsburg Bulletin:
Copper Ore–Monday afternoon the first copper ore was brought to Dillsburg for shipment to Staten Island, New York, by Mr. John Kuntz. The ore is found in large quantities on Cornelius Baker’s farm, about two miles southeast of Dillsburg. The specimens produced have a rich appearance and at present there is every indication that the mining of this ore will become a leading feature in the mining interest of this neighborhood. Parties who have analyzed the ore claim it to be worth $45 per ton.
The biography section of Gibson’s 1886 History of York County says John Kuntz is a carpenter, farmer and lime-burner with 18 employees. Kuntz’s biography continues “He has been largely interested in the copper business and has traveled through New Jersey, New York, West Virginia, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan inspecting ore. He is one of the organizers of the Dillsburg Copper, Lead and Iron Company, of which at present he is a director.”
A Google search turned up quite a few ornate Dillsburg Copper, Lead and Iron Company certificates. The prices asked averaged about $20, rather ironically the same price at which the shares were issued around 130 years ago. None of the half dozen or so I looked at were ever filled out. They all had different numbers, so they were probably originals, never issued. I guess that stock offering didn’t go as well as hoped.