Gold Mine Licencing Stamps

Welsh Gold

Gold has been mined or extracted in Wales since the Bronze Age. Many of the traditional mines have Roman origins, and even today there is small scale mining from a seam that runs from Carmarthenshire to Snowdonia. The reason being Welsh Gold naturally commands premium prices. Even trinkets with ‘a touch of Welsh gold’ sell for more those made from any old gold.

There was a Welsh Gold Rush during 1929-30, when seam were reported in Caernarvonshire to the west of Snowdonia. Eifion Emlyn Jones, a businessman with a finger in many pies took full advantage of this opportunity virtually on his doorstep. Having bought mining rights from many of the landowners for a pittance, he formed the Caernarvonshire Precious Metal Corporation and leased these rights for quarterly gold and silver mining licenses at £5 each. He also made sure the companies had to hire workers from him, and all precious metals had to be brokered through his companies, with Jones taking a good percentage. By employing Jones’ own workers he could have spies on the ground ensuring that all the gold was declared to his brokerage.

The stamps, designed by his wife and printed by his brother’s Menai Printing Works (why pay someone else when you can keep it in the family), show perhaps his only extravagance. Each is embossed with a circle of pure gold or silver – there being separate licences required for both metals. They were used on the certificates of licensing, which had to be displayed at the mine offices. Jones would even sell suitable frames.

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Gold Mine Licensing Stamps

SK NumberTypeDescription
356273£5 gold Bryncelli Gold Mine
356a£5 gold used on certificate
357274£5 silver Nant Gwernol Mine
357a£5 silver used on certificate

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