The remains of Robertsville©Copyright: Jeri Danyleyko
Robertsville, located in Frontenac County (now Township of North Frontenac), was a company town that began as the site of an iron mine venture around 1880.
The mine officially went into operation in 1882. Owned by the Mississippi Mining Company, the iron from Robertsville Mine was of such high quality that it was the preferred choice for the production of Bessemer steel. Most of the ore was either mined from open cuts or pits ranging from 50 to 100 feet in depth, and from the main production shaft and pit that bottomed out at the 200 foot level.
The company town site contained 28 duplex houses, a boarding house, and a store. There was also a shoemaker, two wood dealers, a carpenter, blacksmith shop, and a school. Communication was well covered by daily mail delivery and telegraph service. At its height Robertsville was said to have a population as high as 300, but that likely included transient or temporary workers.
The mine thrived until 1885 when a depression in the American iron market put an end to the operation. The town site was closed and most of the residents left. Mining resumed again for two brief periods in 1900-01 and then again in 1918-19. After that the mine was closed for good.
Today nothing remains of the town site except for the cemetery, which still sees occasional use. A number of newer homes have been built in the area.