Sheba Mine

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Information provided by Hans Bornman from his unpublished book, Lowveld Tour Guide:

The turn off to Sheba Mine is 10 km east of Noordkaap, 27 km west of Kaapmuiden. The road, of approximately 7 km, is tarred to the mine. One of the first discoveries in the Sheba valley seems to have been the Nil Desperandum. While prospecting downstream for the continuation of the Nil Desperandum lode, Edwin Bray (1824-1887) discovered the rich Golden Quarry in 1885, which yielded 8 oz gold per ton in a trial crushing. This led to intense prospecting and mining activity in the vicinity and numerous companies were formed.

The Sheba Gold Mining Company was formed in 1886 to mine the rich ore-body of the Golden Quarry. After Bray’s death on 14 July 1887, the company was taken over by Lewis and Marks.

From time to time the Sheba Gold Mining Company acquired the properties of neighbouring companies. By 1897 the Sheba Gold Mining Company was the only one left in the Sheba Valley. It had consolidated itself by outright purchase and amalgamation of some 18 separately owned properties.

The Sheba Gold Mining Company produced from 1886 to 1926. Production was interrupted only during the Anglo-Boer War from 1900 to 1902 and from 1919 to 1921. From 1926 to 1930 there was a lull in mining activities in the Sheba Valley. The Sheba Gold Mining Company went into liquidation and only a small amount of gold was produced from the treatment of tailings took place.

Thereafter the various companies changed hands and in 1953 the Golden Quarry (Pty) Ltd, sold its ground to Eastern Transvaal Consolidated Mines Ltd which has since been developing other properties in the Sheba Valley. The Sheba is one of the oldest working gold mines in the world and will still be producing well into the 21st century.