Mining appears to have been carried out on this site from ancient times. Centred on Wheal Malkin the mine employed around 100 people, but by 1850 the veins to the east became worked out. Production shifted to the western end of the sett around Greenburrow, Bolitho and the Old Wheal Boys Shafts, and was evidently a success, as by 1870 the workforce had doubled.
In the mid 1870s however, the price of Tin fell, due to a find of an alluvial tin deposit in Queensland, Australia. The company struggled on, but was forced to put the mine up for sale in 1877. As many Cornish mines found themselves in the same situation, no buyer could be found and the mine closed later that year.
A number of attempts have been made to reopen the mine, but all have come to nought.
Greenburrow pumping engine house was built in 1865 to pump water from the Greenburrow Shaft. The engine, a 40-inch cylinder pumping engine, had previously been in use over North Killiow Shaft.
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