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RETURN To an Order of the House for a Return of the Reports of the Government Inspector of Coal Measures… British Columbia. Legislative Assembly 1894

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 57 Vict. Coal Measures in NioolA Country. 1189
KETUBN
To an Order of the House for a Return of the Reports of the Government Inspector of
Coal Measures in the Nicola country.
F. G. VERNON,
Chief Commissioner of Lands and Works.
Lands and Works Department,
20th March, 1894.
Nanaimo, B. C, 22nd June, 1893.
To the Honourable
The Chief Commissioner of Lands and Works
for British Columbia.
Sir,—I have the honour to submit the following Beport on the Coal Fields of Nicola
Valley.
In accordance with your instructions I proceeded to the Valley, which I reached shortly
after noon of June 5th, instant, Dr. Lefevre and Mr. S. Tingley arriving at the same time.
After a short rest, in company with one of the settlers, we crossed the valley at a considerable
distance below the confluence of the Coldwater River with the Nicola Biver. I followed up
the west side of Coldwater, keeping it quite a distance to the left until we got to its bank
again ; then turned to follow this stream down, but high above it in keeping this course, and
so finally came to sandstone rock on the surface, this being the first rock of this kind that I
had seen here. At this place I got down to the bed of the river, and here I saw coal for the
first time in Nicola Valley. There are two tunnels down into the coal, only a few feet apart
at the entrance, and they are connected at a few yards distance in. The strike of this coal is
about north 45° west, with dip of about 18° to north-east.
I went into the upper tunnel, which is in about ten (10) yards. The lower drive is a
much greater distance in and is almost level with the bed of the river, and the water in this
tunnel is about one and a half feet (18 inches) deep; however, it was necessary that I should
go in and I did so, but not to the back, as a distance of ten (10) yards served my purpose to
ascertain that it corresponded with the upper tunnel. The total thickness of this seam,
between the roof and floor, is five feet nine inches (5 ft. 9 in.), and of this there are 4 ft. 10 in.
of what appears to be very good hard coal, and that at the outcrop, viz. : top coal, 1 ft. 6 in. ;
dark bone coal or shale, 2 in. ; coal, 1 ft. 8 in. ; rock, 1 in. ; coal, 4 in. ; shale, 8 in. ; coal,
1 ft. 4 in. (I was told by one of the men who helped to make those tunnels that there was
another thick ply of coal only a few inches below the above mentioned, but I did not see it.)
The roof over this coal is a strong coarse gray sandstone. The tunnels are near to the place
marked "A" on the enclosed map.
I also observed sandstone and shale at or near the place marked "B" on the map. I was
told that the coal had been seen here, but was now filled in. All this is on the west side of
Coldwater Biver, which at the time I was there was very high. The above described measures
are the only exposure of the coal formation that I saw in the valley. Near the place marked
" C " on the map, a borehole has been put down to the depth of 600 feet.    This hole is about 1190 Coal Measures in Nicola Country. 1894
half a mile to the dip of the tunnels, and gives a very encouraging prospect. With the
exception of the seams of coal which I will mention, this hole goes through sandstone and
shale, and is now stopped in what appears to be productive measures. At the depth of 190
feet they strike their first coal, 3 ft. 8 in.; rock, 6 in.; coal, 1 ft. 4 in.; rock, 8 in. ; coal, 7 in.;
making a good workable coal, 5 ft. 7 in. with 1 ft. 2 in. of rock ; total thickness, 6 ft. 9 in.
At 212 feet 3 in. coal is again struck, and this is a very good coal, 1 ft. 5 in. thick ; again, at
340 feet from the surface, there is 1 ft. 4 in. of good coal ; there are four other thin seams of
coal mentioned at lower depths, all of which go to show that, as you get out into the valley,
good as are the prospects now, they may prove better. You will have noted that the seam
mentioned as in both tunnels and in borehole, has increased nine inches in thickness in the
short distance that the borehole is from the outcrop, and it is possible for some of those thin
seams to thicken as they go out, and that they may be profitable to work ; and in the extension
of this borehole it remains yet to be seen what may be developed.
At or near the place marked "D" on the map, there is another borehole put down to
the depth of 199 feet. This hole on the surface is close to the crystalline rock; it is not to be
wondered at that such rock was struck at the depth of 195 feet from the surface, when it was
stopped.
I have examined the cores taken out of the above-mentioned boreholes. They are 1 and
5-16th inches in diameter, and they are fine specimens of what the drill has gone through.
They look so well that no person would wish to see better looking rock, where- it is expected
to find coal.
I am of opinion that this valley will yet prove to be a large coal basin extending up to
near Nicola Lake.
I also went across the valley to the south side, over the Indian Beserve, thence up
Coldwater Biver bank about four miles, but as there was not any prospect of seeing anything
of the coal measures within a reasonable distance I returned and went up the valley to Nicola
Lake, and by enquiry of the settlers endeavoured to ascertain the prospects of rock in the
neighbourhood, so as to avoid going to the mountain. The settlers were very anxious to give
all the information in their power, and I think I have seen all the rock of the coal formation
that is exposed in this valley.
I am satisfied that there is a large field of coal there, although I have no evidence
excepting what I have referred to in this report; and to furnish evidence of the quality and
extent of the coal field that would justify the construction of works and the building of a
railroad for conveyance of the product of coal and coke, as well as the agricultural produce
that the valuable farming district now lying in an enormous area, almost dormant, or confined
to stock-raising, I would respectfully advise the further exploration of the coal field by drilling
boreholes in the following situations, viz. : one hole at or near G. Murray's, south-east corner,
marked " E " on map ; one hole at or near the north-east corner of Indian Beserve, marked
" F" on map. By finding coal at these points a considerable width of the field would be
proved. Another hole should be put down at or near the place shown by "G-" on the map,
this being near the middle of the valley. If the boreholes indicated be put down and coal
should be found in them of workable character, then, taken in connection with the result of
the bore already made, the fact would be established that Nicola Valley is underlaid with
coal of a superior quality that would call for immediate development and the expenditure of
the necessary amount of capital, with the highest probability of very remunerative returns to
the investors, and on the carrying out of mining and railway works a large degree of prosperity
would visit the locality aud surrounding country.
Appended to this is a copy of the journal of the boreholes referred to as put down.
I have the honour to be,
Sir,
Yours most obediently,
(Signed) Archibald Dick,
Government Lnspector of Mines. 57 Vict.
Coal Measures int Nicola Country.
1191
Prospect No. 5.
Becord of Boring at Coutlee, B. C, Nicola Valley, on Lot  123, Township 91,
Nicola District.
Height of surface at  boring above or below railway line or other fixed datum point,
Spence's Bridge, 768 feet.
Approximate elevation above Spence's Bridge, 1,200 feet.
Description of material passed through.
Gravel and clay . ..
Shale	
Sandstone (coarse) .
Shale	
Sandstone	
Sandshale	
Sandstone (tine)
Sandshale	
Slate 	
Coal	
Sandstone	
Coal	
Sandstone 	
Coal	
Sandstone, carbonaceous streaks
Sandshale    ...
Coal	
Shale	
Sandstone, 2 inches of coal at top
Slate 	
Sandstone (fine)	
Slate (black)	
Sandstone (fine)	
Sandstone (coarse)	
Sandstoue, with shale partings	
Sandshale	
Coal [carbonaceous streaks
Sandstone (coarse and fine), with partings of slate and
Slate	
Sandstone  	
Shale	
Slate 	
Shale	
Sandstone	
Shale	
Sandstone	
Shale	
Sandstone, carbonaceous streaks	
Coal, 2 inches of slate in centre	
Slate, 1 inch of coal at bottom	
Sandstone and shale, carbonaceous streaks
Sandstone 	
Shale	
Sandstone, with last foot conglomerate
Shale, carbonaceous streaks	
Sandstone 	
Shale	
Sandstone, carbonaceous streaks	
Slate 	
Coal	
Sandstone (fine)
Coal	
Sandstone (fine)
Colour.
Dark   	
Dark	
Cray	
Dark	
Dark	
Dark	
Dark and blue.
Dark	
Dark	
Gray
Gray
Greenish.
Dark	
Light.
Dark .
Black
Dark .
Black
Dark.
Gray .
Dark .
Dark .
Dark	
Dark	
Dark	
Black	
Black 	
Dark	
Dark	
Dark	
Black 	
Gray and dark.
Dark	
Dark	
Gray	
Dark	
Part gray	
Dark	
Dark and gray.
Dark	
Gray	
Black  	
Gray
Gray
Thickness of
layer or bed.
55 feet.
2
a
o
0
49
1
3
12
3
1
3
13
1
1
5
4
11
8
9
7
2
1
1
9
4
2
7
1
2
22
1
1
3
11
3
29
2
10
8
39
3
6 inches.
6 „ .
8 „ .
6 „ .
4 „ .
8 „ .
7 ii •
3 „ .
3 M •
5 „ .
4 „ .
10 inches
7 inches
5      „     .
7 inches
7     „    .
10     „    .
6      „     .
Depth of bottom
of layer or bed
from surface.
55 feet
57    ,i
121    „
120    n
131    „
133    „
139    „
188
190
193
194
195
196
196
209
212
213
217
230
231
232
237
241
252
260
269
269
287
289
290
291
300
304
306
313
314
316
338
340
341
344
355
358
387
389
399
407
446
449
450
456
456
458
6 inches.
8 inches.
2 „ .
6     „    .
3 inches.
10 inches.
7 inches.
7 inches.
2      ,,     .
6 inches. 1192
Coal Measures in Nicola Country.
1834
Prospect No.  5.—Concluded.
Description of material passed through.
Shale	
Sandstone  	
Sandstone and shale	
Sandstone  	
Sandshale	
Sandstone   	
Sandshale	
Sandstone and shale	
Sandstone (soft)	
Sandstone and shale	
Shale, carboniferous streaks
Coal and slate	
Sandstone and shale	
Colour.
Dark	
Gray	
Dark	
Dark and gray.
Dark	
Gray	
Dark	
Dark	
Gray	
Gray	
Dark	
Dark
Thickness of
layer or bed.
3
17
11
15
3
2
8
2
15
46
8
I
9
feet
S inches
7 „ .
9      „    .
Depth of bottom
of layer or bed
from surface.
461
478
4S9
504
507
509
517
519
534
580
588
590
600
feet
8 inches.
3       n     -
Began January 29th, 1891 ; finished March 17th, 1891.
I hereby certify that this is a correct report of formations passed through.
(Signed)        E. L. Davis.
To the Honourable Forbes G. Vernon,
Chief Commissioner of Lands and Works,
Victoria, B.C.
Nanaimo, 12th December, 1893.
Sir,—I have the honour to state that, as per the instructions contained in your letter of
22nd November, ultimo, requiring me to proceed to Nicola Valley and examine the boring
and prospecting recently performed there by the Nicola Valley Railway Company, I left
Nanaimo on the 3rd instant, which was as soon as I could get away, and went direct to Nicola
Valley, where I arrived on the Sth instant, and, accompanied by Mr. E. L. Davis, who was in
charge of the works, at once proceeded to the site of the borehole. I inspected the work done
there, and examined the cores (of rock) brought up by the Diamond drilling machine, and also
the samples of the seams of coal pierced by the drill. A copy of the Journal of the rocks and
coal passed through by the drill, with the depths and thicknesses of the same, is annexed to
this letter. After giving some consideration to the prospect shown to me, and in order to
further satisfy myself, I again visited the locality of the borehole on the next day (6th) and
re-examined the cores and coal, and the surface around the borehole, which is almost in the
centre of north-west quarter of section 14, township 91, the property of Jesus Garcia, and
about 30 chains south-east from G. Murray's south-east corner (one of the places mentioned to
you in my report of the 22nd of June last).
In this borehole the Company have been very successful by striking their first coal at
the depth of 137 feet 6 inches from the surface. Coal, 8 inches ; shale, 1 foot 1 inch ; coal, 6
inches ; slate, 4 inches; coal, 4 feet 4 inches, making a good workable vein of coal 5 feet 6
inches thick, mixed with 1 foot 5 inches of rock. This coal is somewhat soft, but appears to
be very clean. The rock cores show the pitch to be about 40 degrees ; and it is quite probable
that there may be some local disturbance in the formation which has caused the coal to be
soft here.     In the other places the coal was hard.
Further down in the measures, at a depth of 166 feet 6 inches, coal of a thickness of 1
foot 11 inches was found ; this upon examination I also consider to be soft. At 219 feet from
the surface 5 inches of coal is found, and again at the depth of 335 feet they passed through
7 inches of coal, this being the last coal struck in the borehole, which was carried down to
the depth  of  562 feet and then  stopped, with  prospects  of a promising  character in this 57 Vict.
Coal Measures in Nicola Country.
1193
borehole, as in a borehole put down previously, that coal would be found at a further, and
perhaps not much greater, depth. All the measures (or strata) gone through look most
favourable, and prove to be productive.
In my report of 22nd June last I recommended the putting down also of another bore at
or near the north-east corner of the Indian Beserve ; this has not been done; however the
holes and drifts that have been already run into the coal prove that there is a large deposit of
coal of a surperior quality lying under the Nicola Valley, and the work already clone shows
that the coal beds extend over several miles. The prospects already obtained are sufficient to
justify any party in commencing to develop the coal field there without putting down the
additional bore that I suggested near the Beserves.
In conclusion, as the prospecting done by the explorers has reasonably established the
fact of the existence of a large and practicably workable coal field in Nicola Valley, it may,
from a coal miner's as well as a capitalist's point of view, be considered safe to start work
without further delay.
I trust that in the above report, which I have made as brief and to the point as possible,
I have carried out your instructions satisfactorily, but I shall be willing to give you any
details or further report that you may desire or deem necessary in the matter of the Nicola
Valley coal field on being requested to do so.
I have the honour to be,
Sir,
Yours most obediently,
(Signed)        Archibald Dick,
Government Lnspector of Mines for B. C
Prospect No. 7.
Canadian Pacific Railway Company.    Record of Boring at Coutlee, Nicola Valley.
Height of surface at boring above or below railway line or other fixed datum point.
Description of material passed through.
Clay and sand	
Sandstone (coarse)	
Shale	
Sandstone  	
Shale	
Sandstone	
S ale    	
Coal	
Shale .   	
Coal	
Slate 	
Coal	
Shale	
Sandstone 	
Shale	
Sandstone 	
Shale	
Coal	
Sandstone and shale	
Sandstone 	
Conglomerate	
Slate, with carbonaceous streaks
Coal	
Slate 	
Sandstone, shale partings	
Colour.
Gray .
Dark
Gray .
Dark .
Gray .
Dark .
Dark .
Dark
Dark ..
Gray .
Dark . .
Gray . .
Dark . .
Gray and dark.
Gray, coarse.. .
Gray	
Black 	
Black
Gray .
Thickness of
layer.
80 feet 	
29    „     	
4    „     	
6 „     	
3 „	
7 ,,    	
8 M    6 inches
8      „     .
1 „    1
6     „    .
4      „     .
4 ,,    4      „     .
3    ,,    7     ,,.
10    „    	
5 „    	
2 ,,    	
1
1
21
13
12
4
6 inches
11      ii    .
7 ,,    .
5 inches
7     „
15
Depth of
bottom of layer
from surface.
80 feet
109
113
119
122
129
137
138
139
139
140
144
148
158
163
165
166
168
190
203
215
219
219
220
235
6 inches.
2      „     .
6 inches.
5    „    ..
5 inches. 1194
Coal Measures in Nicola Country.
1894
Prospect No.  7.—Concluded.
Description of material passed through.
Shale, with carbonaceous streaks ...
Sandstone	
Sandstone (coarse)	
Conglomerate, carbonaceous streaks
Shale	
Shale, carbonaceous streaks	
Shale	
Conglomerate	
Shale	
Sandstone, carbonaceous streaks ...
Coal	
Sandstone and shale, carbonaceous streaks
Conglomerate    	
Sandstone and shale	
Conglomerate	
Sandstone, carbonaceous streaks	
Conglomerate	
Sandstone aud shale, carbonaceous streaks
Conglomerate	
Shale	
Sandstone 	
Depth of
bottom of layer
from surface.
I  hereby  certify to  this  being  a correct  copy of  borehole No. 7, on N.W. quarter of
Section 14, Township 91, property of Jesus Garcia.
(Signed)        E. L. Davis.
victoria, B.C.:
Printed by Richard Wolkkxdk*. Printer to the Queen's Most Excellent Majesty.

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