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2030 ft level Taylor's Shaft, Wallaroo Mines
Title : 2030 ft level Taylor's Shaft, Wallaroo Mines 2030 ft level Taylor's Shaft, Wallaroo Mines
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Source : Wallaroo Mines, B 254
Date of creation : ca. 1917
Format : Photograph
Contributor : State Library of South Australia
Catalogue record
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Description :

View of 2030 foot level of Taylor's Shaft, Wallaroo Mines, showing the wooden supporting structure of the mineshaft and a group of miners.

The miners take their crib or lunch break at one of the levels: when working so far underground time could not be lost in the long ascent to the surface so breaks were taken underground.

The only illumination came from candles making working conditions underground deplorable, dirty and dangerous. Taylor's shaft went down 3,000 feet. The higher grade ore was mined early and shafts went lower seeking further lodes of lower grade ore. The increasing depths of the shafts led to problems with water and, in 1904, fire.

Taylor's Shaft caught fire on 13 January 1904, and the flames soon had hold of the timber of the poppet head (the structure above ground used to haul men and equipment up and down the shaft). This was pulled down to prevent fire spreading to other surface structures but little could be done in the shafts themselves. Fortunately the fire had been noticed at the change of shifts. The fire was eventually contained and put out, but it took longer to clear the smoke from the shafts. Rebuilding of the poppet head commenced shortly after. The damaged Taylor's shaft was not re-opened but a new one constructed a little distance to the south. The new shaft was ready by the end of the year.

Coverage year : 1917
Place : Wallaroo
Region : Yorke Peninsula
Further reading :

Bailey, Keith James Boor's bonanza: a history of Wallaroo Mines, South Australia [Kadina, S. Aust.]: H.K. Bailey, c2002

Bailey, Keith The Wallaroo mine, Kadina, South Australia (1860-1923): a pictorial history Adelaide: National Trust of South Australia, 1985

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