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History General

Mining Country

A history of Canada’s mines and miners

by (author) John Sandlos & Arn Keeling

James Lorimer & Company Ltd., Publishers
Initial publish date
Sep 2021
General, Natural Resource Extraction, Native American, Natural Resources, Social History
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Sep 2021
    List Price

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Mining has had a significant presence in every part of Canada — from the east to west coasts to the far north. This book tells the stories of those who built Canada’s mining industry. It highlights the experiences of the people who lived and worked in mining towns across the country, the rise of major mining companies, and the emergence of Toronto and Vancouver as centres of global mining finance. It also addresses the devastating effects mining has had on Indigenous communities and their land and documents several high-profile resistance efforts.
Mining Country presents fascinating snapshots of Canadian mining past and present, from pre-contact Indigenous copper mining and trading networks to the famous Cariboo and Klondike Gold Rushes. Generously illustrated with more than 150 visuals drawn from every period of mining history, this book offers a thorough account of the story behind the industry.

About the authors

JOHN SANDLOS teaches history at Memorial University of Newfoundland. With doctoral research on northern wildlife, he has devoted much of his research in the past decade to mining history. Dr. Sandlos is the author of Hunters at the Margin: Native People and Wildlife Conservation in the Northwest Territories, and co-editor of the volume, Mining and Communities in Northern Canada: History, Politics and Memory.

John Sandlos' profile page

ARN KEELING is a historical geographer at Memorial University of Newfoundland. His teaching and research focuses on the environmental-historical geography of Western and Northern Canada. In recent years, his research has explored the historical and contemporary encounters of northern Indigenous communities with large-scale resource developments. With John Sandlos, he is co-editor of the volume, Mining and Communities in Northern Canada: History, Politics and Memory.

Arn Keeling's profile page

Editorial Reviews

"The book aims to provide “a general narrative of Canadian mining history” and that is where it succeeds. The reader quickly realizes how fundamental the search for, and mining of, metals and minerals has been to Canada’s creation."

CIM Magazine

"Sandlos and Keeling show that the history of mining is not just a story of technological triumphalism, while also demonstrating its essential and undeniable role in the function of our modern material lives."

University of British Columbia

"The book includes many references, an extensive bibliography and 150 archived pictures and drawings showing mining, and the miners that carried out the work, from all regions of Canada, throughout the long history of our Industry. It is an ambitious project, and its text is clear and uncomplicated. It is well worth the time needed to read it and will amply reward the reader, even if they may not agree with all the opinions written in and between the lines."

Geoscience Canada

"A beautifully-illustrated, over-sized volume, Mining Country functions partly as a coffee table book...yet, its text does not conform to the rather simplistic, often upbeat narrative that typically appears in these kinds of books...Mining Country provides a compelling synthesis of Canada’s mining history, accessible for the general reader and useful for scholars."


“Mining is a huge part of what makes northern Ontario tick. There are a lot of books out there about individual mines or mining towns, but [Mining Country] takes a birdseye look at the entire country.”

CBC Up North

"The book sets out to tell the story of how mining and the search for mining minerals shaped the course of development and settlement and of course shaped the lives of the people who often lived and died under the thumb of mining interests."

CBC Information Morning Cape Breton

Other titles by John Sandlos

Other titles by Arn Keeling