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Chapter 6

HIST113 Chapter Notes - Chapter 6: Teck Resources, Vertical Integration

Course Code
Catherine Briggs

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Week 6
“Creang a New Staple: Capital, Technology, and Monopoly in Brish Columbia’s Resource Sector, 1901-1925”
(Jeremy Mouat)
-Examines the mining industry of BC
-Describes the emergence of zinc producon –protable sector
-Increasing amounts of zinc were found in the silver-lead ore of eastern BC
-Zinc was seen as a contaminant
-Zinc rendered valuable ore (in terms of silver/lead content) uneconomical
-What does the paper argue about?
oThe emergence of zinc mining reected a fundamental restructuring of the industry, as the focus
shied from the discovery and exploitaon of bonanza deposits of gold/silver to the less spectacular
producon of copper, lead, and zinc.
-What does the paper describe?
oThe early career of the Consolidated Mining and Smelng Company of Canada (Cominco), a subsidiary
of the Canadian Paci%c Railway
oCominco –became the most pro%table mining company to operate in BC
-The Consolidated Mining and Smelng Company of Canada Limited (Cominco) –a subsidiary of the Canadian
Pacic Railway
-Features of the Mining Industry:
oVercal integraon
oPowerful corporaon dominated by metropolitan capital
oReliance on economies of scale
-Mining Industry in 1890s –compeon of Australia and South Africa
-Problems for Mine Managers:
oZinc –became a new/unwelcome component of that area’s silver-lead ore
oProblem –the inability of tradional smelng methods to treat low-grade silver-lead-zinc ores e7ciently
oAlfred Garde (manager of BC most protable mines):
The zinc problem was confronted
oLeader in zinc metallurgy
oMethod for recovering the metal involved roasng zinc ore in retorts and then recovering the pure metal
by disllaon –the Belgian process
-Alfred Garde:
oHe was idenfying the zinc problem for the benet of an audience in central Canada
-Constant Fernau (European mining engineer)
oThe zinc problem was a promising business opportunity
oHe announced a plan to treat the zinc ore of the province
Building a concentrator for the ore, a zinc smelter, a lead smelter
What is the result from this he suggested?
oIncreased prots for the mine owner
oIncreased tra7c for the railways
oEmployment for a large number of men
oIncrease in output
oGeneral prosperity
-Fernau’s Project:
oUnable to secure gvmt support but he obtained substanal European backing
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