Parker Shaft, Franklin Mine (2021)
Construction of the Parker Shaft was begun in 1891 as a result of successful exploratory drilling by Joseph A. Van Mater, Superintendent of the Lehigh Zinc and Iron Company. Completion of the three-compartment shaft, ultimately 975 feet deep, was delayed until 1894 due to the sudden inflow of water at a depth of 560 feet. It remained in operation until October 15, 1910, when regular operation of the Palmer Shaft commenced. The Parker Shaft had only one landing at the 950-foot level. Miners then traversed a westerly 315-foot-long crosscut to get to the orebody. During its short time of operation, some of the world’s rarest minerals were raised out of this shaft. Even today, these minerals are globally referred to as “Parker Shaft minerals.”
Erected by the Franklin-Ogdensburg Mineralogical Society and the Board of Sussex County Commissioners.