Type of Work: Extractive and Mining Industries

Cutting ice on a lake in the Adirondacks

Cutting ice on a lake in the Adirondacks

Men use a horse-drawn saw to cut ice on an unidentified lake in the Adirondacks. Note large icehouses in background with conveyors for lifting ice blocks. Circa 1900.

Pliny Miller’s sawmill and grist mill in Saranac Lake

Pliny Miller’s sawmill and grist mill in Saranac Lake

Pliny Miller’s sawmill and grist mill, built in 1827, was in many ways the genesis of Saranac Lake. To run the mill, the first dam on the lake was built, creating a large mill pond. The sawmill provided the lumber for many of the hotels and great camps in Saranac Lake. Date unknown. Saranac Lake, […]

Ice Harvesting on Moody Pond in Saranac Lake

Ice Harvesting on Moody Pond in Saranac Lake

Harvesting ice. The initial raft of ice has been cut into strips that are then reduced to 300-pound cakes,  which are lifted by a conveyor belt into the ice house. February 1940. Saranac Lake, NY. Courtesy of Historic Saranac Lake.

Operating a crane in Trout Lake

Heavy equipment operator Leo Reynolds stands next to a crane at Trout Lake. 1963. Trout Lake, NY, Photo courtesy of Joan Reynolds.

A group of workers at Hoopers Mines in North River

Workers on a break pose for a photograph at Hoopers Mines. Just a few days later, one of the workers pictured would be killed in a mining accident. Circa 1910. North River, NY. Photo courtesy of Joan Reynolds.

World-famous dowser Ted Kaufman in the North Country

Ted, who lives in North River, learned the dowsing trade from an elderly neighbor named Edith Lincoln. Now, Kaufman says that it’s easier for him “to sense water moving underground than it was to smell cookies baking in the kitchen from an upstairs room.” Kaufman is a local legend, and has been asked to find […]

A miner at work in Pit #2 of Barton Mines in Ruby Mountain

A miner at work in Pit #2 of Barton Mines in Ruby Mountain

Miner working in Pit #2 of Barton Mines. Barton Mines originated in Johnsburg in 1878 after Henry Hudson Barton discovered that crushed garnet glued to paper made excellent sandpaper. Large garnet deposits were found on the side of Gore Mountain. Garnet mining was incredibly important to the Johnsburg economy, but mining was a hard life. Miners made little […]