The enterprise that cost the Seigneurship.
In 1834 Seigneur Pierre Le Pelley lll granted a 21 year mining concession for Sark. Mining began in 1835, mostly at Port Gorey where four shafts were sunk and a railway and jetty built. A rich seam of silver was struck but it was very narrow and did not last long.
In 1839 Pierre drowned at sea and his brother Ernest took over as Seigneur. A brief period of prosperity followed but there was an ever-present need for more money and new pumps to prevent flooding.
In 1845 a gallery ceiling collapsed and seawater flooded in, drowning ten miners. Legend has it that on the same day a ship loaded with Sark Silver was wrecked off the coast of Guernsey and all cargo lost.
The ill-fated enterprise then came to an end, as did 120 years of Le Pelley Seigneurship when the family lost the Fiefdom of Sark as a result of the mining debts.