Beautiful certificate from the Empire Consolidated Quicksilver Mining Company
issued in 1901. This historic document was printed by the John A. Lowell & Company and has an ornate border around it with a vignette of the company name. This item has the original signatures of the Company's President, and Treasurer, and is over 112 years old.
United States Investor, Volume 12, Part 2, Issues 27-52 - October 1901
Empire Consolidated Quicksilver Mining Company.
The existence of quicksilver ore in California has bean known for fully 75 years, and for over 50 years the quicksilver mines of this start© have been worked in a greater or less degree, until the recorded production of the quicksilver mines of California lias become second only to Spain, and the present annual output now amounts to one-quarter of the world's entire yield. According to the state's records, the great bulk of this production, has come from six or seven permanent mines, of Which the New A1 mad-en leads, with a recorded yield of $45,000,000 worth of quicksilver. This mine is 2,450 feot deep, and has over 86 miles of galleries. The Sulphur Banks quicksilver mines stand second in output from Jan. 1, 1875. to Jan. 1, 1900. This mine is one of the four mines which has been acquired by the Empire Consolidated Quicksilver Mining Co., which company has also secured and consolidated with it the Abbott and the Empire and Central quicksilver mines. The first two properties are located in Lake coun'iy, and the two latter in Colusa county, Cal.
In considering the question of profits to be derived from the mining of quicksilver, the question of supply and demand is of first importance, and It is interesting to note that notwithstanding an Increasing demand, the world's production has steadily decreased, and that during the past year consumers, unable to obtain a supply in the United States, have been compelled to import considerable quantities. According to the report of the United State.? Ceologlcal Survey, the total production of quicksilver from 1850 to 1898, inclusive, amounted to 1,801,568 flasks of 76% pounds each. These records also show that the highest and lowest prices for each year during this period show an average value of $47.25 per flask or upward of $85,000,000, as the value of the total output. The present market value of quicksilver is $52 per flask.
Some weeks ago we were asked by a subscriber in Baltimore for information relative to the Empire Consolidated Quicksilver mines, but in replying to all of the questions which this party desired answered, we could not cover the ground as fully as we desired at that time, and therefore have thought best to present as clearly and concisely as possible some further facts respecting this enterprise. It should not be confounded with the majority of new enterprises which are being offered to the public at the present time, because It is
A PROPERTY AND NOT A PROSPECT and has been tested and explored to an extent which enables its management to determine quite accurately its real value, and *.he results which may be obtained by careful and conservative management. The total surface area of these four properties is 3,88 i acres of mineral land, all included ■within a radius of 18 miles, and as is well known, located in the most productive quicksilver districts of the state.
The title to these properties Is clear.
title being evidenced by United States parent and approved by attorneys of excellent standing, and Insured by the California Title, Insurance & Trust Co., of Sam Francisco. The Empire Consolidated Quicksilver Mining Co. is a New Jersey corporation, capitalized ait $5,000,000, the value of the shares being $10 each, full paid and non-assessable.
The directors inform us that they have invested to a considerable extent their own money in the enterprise, and have entered the field f >r the promo"io:i of new enterprises, with the intention of building up a reputation for honesty and fair dealing, which will insure to them the success and the confidence of the investing public. One feature of their manner of operation is the employment of a chartered accountant clothed with powers similar to those of a national bank examiner, who Is authorized and empowered at any time to call for an examination of the books and accounts of any officer or employe of the corporation, and to go at least twice a year to California to audit the receipts and disbursements, and the entire business management of the mines by the general manager of the company.
The Sulnhur Banks mine and the Abbott mine have been operated many 3'ears, and It has. therefore, been a comparatively easy matter for mining expertB to determine the actual value of the present ore reserves on these two properties. All the company's properties hnve been examined by Wm. Iralan, Jr., E. M., ex-state mineralogist and ex-state engineer of California, and a further examination, independent of the first, has recently been made by Geo. A. Tweedy, E. M., field assistant California state mining bureau, and In addition to these examinations a representative of the company has recently spent several weeks in California at the mines, checking up th'3 reports of the engineers, and making a careful investigation In order that no mistake may be made. We have seen the reports of both Mr. IreIan and Mr. Tweedy, and find thai, tho'-e is comparatively little difference in the total value which they place on the ore in sight. Mr. Tweed}' in reporting on the Abbott, places the total value of ore in sight at $4,529.683.60; Sulphur Banks, $4,990,000; Central and Empire. $321,840. Mr. Irelar.'s estimate of the value of the ore in sight on the Abbott Is $4,166,265.69; Sulphur Banks, $4,497,003; Empire and Central, $250.1 G3.6S. These figures are net, after arbitrarily deducting 20 per cent, which is the practice of all conservative engineers.
It is on the basis of these valuations that the company wan capitalized, without taking Into consideration other Important products which the properties contain. Mr. Tweedy, in his report on the property, says: "In the examination, T proceeded as one would to examine a mine for a bank that intended to take a mortgage on the property for a stated amount. I measured values, not indications." Mr. Irelan appears to have proceeded on equally conservative lines.
HISTORY OF THE PROPERTIES.
The history of these properties Is of Interest. They have been successfully worked for borax, sulphur and quicksilver. The records of the state of California show that the Sulphur
Panics mine from 1874 to 1896 produced 67,906 flasks of mercury of a net value of $2,777,689, making it, as before stated, for many years the second largest producer of quicksilver in the t'nited States. The Abbott mine, it Is claimed, holds the record for producing more quicksilver per ton of ore ■ireated than any other mine in California,
The properties of the Empire Consolidated Quicksilver Mining Co. have been operated continuously in a small way for many years, but it is only within the past two years that their large deposits have been under systematic exploration, and only within the pact few months that their development has been taken up on modern business lines by the present organization. As an indication of the extent to which they have been developed, we may state that $700,000 has been spent in past years in this direction, and $400,000 has been spent in equipment. A special fund of $100,000 has now been provided for, which along with the amounts above mentioned, 3s not included In the present capitalization, or what Is more Important still, from an investor's point of view, not named among the assets. Neither are the large deposits of sulphur known to exist on its properties included In estimating their value. When it is stated that $350,000 has in years past been derived from the sale of sulphur, before the existence of the cinnabar ore on them "was known, it would appear that this feature ought not to be overlooked.
Neither has the value of the property as a producer of borax been considered in the company's estimate of values. It is stated that over $400,000 worth of borax has been obtained by solar evaporation, the lake on these properties.whieh is several miles in extent, according to the United States geological reports, being composed of 5 per cent borax in solution valued at fIH.000,000. The company has been oilerod an opportunity to allow this borax to be recovered from the lake on a royalty basis, but has refused to consider such a proposition.
In these days when so much Is being said about California oil, it is interesting to note that on the Abbott properties there are some very valuable deposits of high grade oil, while on the other portions of the property there is every indication of oil in considerable quantities. For lubricating and for furnace fuel, the company is using oil obtained from a well on the Abbott property. This well has been a regular producer for some time. The company has had opportunities to lease the property for oil development, but has also refused these offers, and It Is probable that it will eventually exploit its lands for oil purposes.
Respecting equipment, the Sulphur Banks and Abbott properties have now a furnace capacity of 225 tons per day, the Sulphur Banks having six furnaces capable of handling 175 tons of ore daily. The company, however, is now pushing the completion of two additional furnaces, one of 50 tons and the other of 80 tons, and with «he repairs now under "Way, will by the opening of the new year Increase the amount of ore handled daily to 225 tons. At present, it Is handling about 100 tons dally.
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