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Lady prospectors staked a number of claims

Mrs. Caroline Mayben Flower was one of the most well-known in the district
An undated photo of lady prospector Caroline Maben Flowers with a 38 calibre-gun and ore samples.

Many may be familiar with prospecting and the typical vision of what a prospector is. Did you know that there were also female prospectors or “lady prospectors” as they were nicknamed? 

Both Cobalt and the Porcupine camps had lady prospectors in the early days. One, Mrs. Caroline Mayben Flower, was the most well-known in the district and she staked a number of claims that had a lot of promise. She was also a pianist with a secret alternate identity! Mrs. Flowers moved out of the area eventually to discover gold elsewhere but she held several claims along the Mattagami River. 

In the fall of 1922, around this time exactly, two ladies left Cochrane for Lightning River gold fields. These ladies were Mrs. Sainsbury and Mrs. Patterson. Mrs. Patterson was married to the president of the Canadian Gold Mining Syndicate. They were described as well-prepared as they were dressed for the part in riding breeches and khaki shirts – allegedly they kept their silk stockings on to help keeps the mosquitos and flies away.

The Timmins Museum: National Exhibition Centre regularly provides TimminsToday readers with a glimpse of the city’s past.

Find out more of what the Timmins museum has to offer here and read more Remember This columns here.