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Special Collections & Archives

Manuscript Group 256

National Copper Mining Company

Records, 1906-1944
4 cubic feet

The records of the National Copper Mining Company are part of the records of Day Mines, Inc., donated to the University of Idaho by Henry Day in 1984 and 1985. Initial processing of this manuscript group was done by Leslie Smallwood and Judith Nielsen in 1987 and 1988. Processing was completed by Michael Tarabulski and Jennifer Jenness in December 1991. Funds for processing were provided by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission, the U.S. Department of Education HEA Title II-C "Strengthening Research Library Resources" program, the Library Associates of the University of Idaho and other donors.


The National Copper Mining Company was incorporated in 1906 in the Hunter Mining District, Shoshone County, Idaho. Its claims consisted of the Victor, Victor #2, Bull Frog, Bill #1, Bill #2, Mabel May, Little Bert, and Nellie lodes, and the Mabel May millsite. The first board of directors included D.E. Keys, president; A.P. McRae, vice president; M.J. McHugh, secretary-treasurer; F. Cushing Moore and W.F. Nichols. The board appointed Charles McKinnis the first general manager.

In 1910 the board of directors amended the by-laws of the company to increase the number of directors from five to seven. To secure funds for equipment and construction of a mill, the corporation increased its capital stock in 1913, from 1,250,000 shares to 2,000,000, with a par value of $1 each. Over 600,000 shares were sold at 50 cents per share. The following year National Copper increased its stock to 2,500,000 shares in a successful attempt to acquire the Nellie Lode from the Continental Mining Company. In exchange for the Nellie, Continental shareholders received 500,000 shares of National Copper.

Stockholders were saddled with 18 assessments during the life of the company. The assessments were levied to cover debts, develop the property, or purchase other claims. Mining operations were shut down in 1920 after steadily declining production, and the corporation's charter was forfeited in 1925. Following the 1920 shutdown, National Copper stockholders urged the board of directors to utilize corporate funds in the development of the Homestake property. Members of National Copper's board of directors had been interested in a takeover of Homestake since 1916, and so in 1921 acquired a controlling interest in Homestake Mining Company with 700,000 shares. National increased its holdings to 1,238,955 shares in 1942.

National Copper's charter was reinstated in 1932. By 1935, however, the company had begun to sell off its real and personal property. The Day Mining Company dominated National Copper from 1941 until its dissolution in 1943. National Copper's last board of directors consisted of John Wourms, Henry Buhrmester (both of whom sat on the boards of Homestake and King at the time), F.M. Rothrock, C.O. Dunlop, W.J. Kirby, William Stratton, and Wray Farmin. The board agreed to a stock conversion with King Mining Company, wherein 7.8 shares of National Copper equalled 1 share of King. Ultimately, 209,808 shares of King capital stock were distributed pro rata to National Copper stockholders of record.


The records of the National Copper Mining Company span the years 1906 to 1944, though coverage is slight between 1923 and 1941. Included are minutes of meetings, financial statements, reports, contracts, correspondence, stock ledgers and journals, assessment records, financial ledgers and journals, cashbooks, ore shipping and milling records, pay rolls, a daily work record, and tax records.

Related materials can be found in the records of the King Mining Company.


There are seven series in this group contained in one records box, with an additional thirteen oversized items. The first series, Records of the Board of Directors and the Stockholders, 1910-1943, reflects organizational activities. One minute book and one folder cover the years 1910-1943, and there are two folders of materials related to special meetings in 1943. A final folder includes incomplete runs of monthly and yearly financial statements from two periods: 1913-1919 and 1941-1943.

General Correspondence and Related Records, the second series, contains an alphabetically organized file. Most of the records date from 1942-1944 and concern the disincorporation of National Copper. Giving details of work at the mine before 1920 are an annual report from 1918, work contracts, newspaper clippings, and technical appraisals of progress and prospects.

The third series, Capital Stock Records, documents stock trading activities fairly well in a ledger, two journals, and stock transfer records. Assessment records, however, exist only for assessment eighteen. Also included are an audit from 1942, lists of stockholders, 1919-1920, and correspondence, 1911-1914. Later correspondence from stockholders can be found in the General Correspondence Series.

The fourth series, Financial Records, contains four ledgers, two journals, two cash books, a check register, voucher records, and monthly balance sheets. Only the ledgers provide continuous and complete coverage. Otherwise, aside from the check register, 1941-1944, coverage is all pre-1924.

All Ore Production and Shipment Records date before 1920. Documentation is best for 1917-1919. All Personnel Records date before 1922. Most of the items in these two series are oversized volumes or large unbound sheets.

The final series, Tax Records, includes only three folders, each containing only a few items. There is one capital stock return from 1919, and, in the miscellaneous file, some correspondence regarding exemption from federal income tax. The remaining capital stock and Idaho tax records are from 1941-1944.

Removal of cancelled and blank stock certificates, vouchers, and duplicate materials reduced the bulk of this collection by 9 cubic feet.


I.	Records of the Board of Directors and the Stockholders, 1910-1943	1
II.	General Correspondence and Related Records, 1912-1944	1
III.	Capital Stock Records, 1906-1943	1, o.s.
IV.	Financial Records, 1906-1944	1, o.s.
V.	Ore Production and Shipment Records, 1941-1942	1, o.s.
VI.	Personnel Records, 1914-1921	1, o.s.
VII.	Tax Records, 1915-1944	1


Box	Folder	Description                               

I. Records of the Board of Directors and the Stockholders, 1910-1943

1	1-2	Minutes, 1910-1943
	3-4	Records relating to meetings, 1943
	5	Financial statements, 1913-1919, 1941-1943

II. General Correspondence and Related Records, 1912-1944

	6	Annual reports and statements, 1918, 1942-1944
	7	B-C, 1942-1943
	8	Contracts, 1913-1919
	9	Conversion of stock to King stock, 1943
	10	D, 1943-1944
	11	Decree of Disincorporation, 1944
	12	E-N, 1942-1944
	13	Newspaper clippings, 1918-1920
	14	P-R, 1942-1944
	15-19	Reports on mine status and prospects, 1912-1918
	20	S-W, 1918, 1943-1944

III. Capital Stock Records, 1906-1944

o.s.	21	Stock ledger, 1915-1944
	22-24	Stock journals, 1906-1941
o.s.	25	Stock transfer journal, 1942-1943
	26	Transfer records: Clearwater stock, 1934-1935
	27	Records relating to assessment #18, 1941
o.s.	28	Register for assessment #18, 1942
o.s.	29	Audit, 1942
	30	List of stockholders, 1919-1920
	31	Correspondence: H.H. Stambaugh, 1913-1914
	32	Correspondence, 1911-1912

IV. Financial Records, 1906-1944

	33	Ledger, 1906-1913
o.s.	34-35	Ledgers, 1914-1943
	36	Ledger, 1931-1944
o.s.	37-38	Journals, 1906-1918
o.s.	39	Cashbook, 1913-1923
	40	Cashbook, 1913-1923
	40a	Check register, 1941-1944
	41-42	Voucher records, 1912-1923
	43	Monthly balance sheets, 1913-1915

V. Ore Production and Shipment Records, 1913-1919

	44	Ore shipping and assay records, 1914-1919
o.s.	45	Ore shipment record, 1917-1919
o.s.	46	Mining and milling record, 1917-1919
o.s.	47	Bullion record, 1917-1919
o.s.	47a	Miscellaneous ore records, 1913-1916

VI. Personnel Records, 1914-1921

o.s.	48	Daily work record, 1914-1919
o.s.	49	Pay roll, 1916-1921

VII. Tax Records, 1915-1944

	50	Capital stock tax returns, 1919, 1942-1944
	51	Idaho tax records, 1941-1944
	52	Miscellaneous, 1915-1917

June 1996 / mg256.htm

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