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Visiting the Timmins - Porcupine Chamber of Commerce, Timmins, Ontario, and its ore display: a heritage of mining

Updated on September 4, 2012
Provincial flag of Ontario
Provincial flag of Ontario | Source
Chamber of Commerce in Timmins, Ontario
Chamber of Commerce in Timmins, Ontario | Source
Map location of Timmins, Ontario
Map location of Timmins, Ontario | Source

Over 18 tonnes of ore containing copper and zinc

This display of ore is situated outside the building of the Timmins - Porcupine Chamber of Commerce. Located at Schumacher, the Chamber of Commerce building incorporates a tourist information centre (from where I purchased a number of interesting items relating to the region). This tourist information centre also maintains an Online shopping facility.

The lump of ore was donated by the Texas Gulf Sulphur Company, one of the important mining companies active in the district. (This company is now known as Falconbridge Limited.) The ore contains copper and zinc, which as well as gold, are significant metals mined in the area.

This lump of ore on display weighs no less than 18.14 tonnes (20 US tons).

Interestingly, a time capsule dating from 1966 is buried at the base of the rock display, and it is planned to dig it up in 2066 in order to examine artifacts from a century previously.

Not far from the Chamber of Commerce is the shaft of the McIntyre mine, overlooking Pearl Lake. (When I saw Pearl Lake for the first time, the annual thaw — later in Northern Ontario in any case — had not yet set in and the Lake was frozen.)

It is clear that the mining industry is a well-established part not only of Northern Ontario's economy but also of its historical heritage. Reading the opinion pages of certain Southern Ontario newspapers, one might get the impression of an east-west divide in Canada, between a province such as Alberta, where the presence of oil and mining companies finds widespread, popular support and a readership in Southern Ontario, for whom leader writers regularly spare no effort to expose the supposed perfidies of, or at least the supposedly inherent lack of constructive rôle of, such undertakings. In actual fact, whether such an east- west divide exists or not, yet if it does, then there would also seem to be a marked difference in popular attitudes between Northern and Southern Ontario also, when it comes to a widespread popular willingness to acknowledge the beneficial nature of mining activities.

The Timmins - Porcupine Chamber of Commerce is located at 76 McIntyre Road, Schumacher, Timmins, Ontario.

July 17, 2012

Also worth seeing

In Schumacher itself (part of Timmins), Croatian Hall (formerly known as Mali Zagreb / Little Zagreb) has for many years been a hub of the historically large Croatian community. In Timmins, the Timmins Gold Mine Tour base, (distance: 2.5 kilometres), which is located at the former Hollinger gold mine depicts mining life and one can guess at something of the difficulties experienced by pioneers in the region.


How to get there: Airlines flying to Timmins Victor M Power Airport include Air Canada, from Toronto Pearson Airport, with wide North American and other connections. Car rental is available at Timmins Airport. Please check with the airline or your travel agent for up to date information. You are advised to contact appropriate consular sources regarding any border crossing visa requirements which may apply to the citizens of certain nationalities.

MJFenn is an independent travel writer based in Ontario, Canada.

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