Mineral Capital of Canada

The Town of Bancroft is the “Mineral Capital of Canada”.  This is due to the great variety and quality of mineral specimens found there.  As published in the Heritage Atlas of Hastings County:
Approximately one billion years ago this region was the eastern edge of the continent.  Plate tectonic activity caused the formation of a mountain range through this area (roughly running through Parry Sound, Haliburton, Bancroft and Pembroke).  The plate below the Proto-Atlantic Ocean moved westward and dipped under, or subducted under, the North American plate.  This action pushed sedimentary rock from the coast back onto the continent and folded the coastal rock, a process we can see in the Rocky Mountains today.  Magma from the melting plate descending under the continent rose up as intrusions into this mixture, where the places it melted and mixed with sedimentary rocks.
While many years ago the variety of mineral specimens made the Bancroft area quite popular to prospectors and investors who setup commercial mines in the region, today the former mine sites and other accessible locations provide amazing collecting opportunities for tourists, hobbyists and gem collectors.  If you would like to explore the recreational geology of the area, the Bancroft & District Chamber of Commerce offers field trips.  In addition, Ontario’s Highlands Tourism Organization invites you to “Come Wander” and discover the gems of Hastings County and surrounding area.  Be sure to stop in at the Bancroft Mineral Museum. It is home to an amazing collection of specimens from the local area and provides educational resources for schools and universities.
You don’t want to miss the annual Rockhound Gemboree , Canada’s largest gem and mineral show, attracting more than 15,000 people.  Further, the local community and County is exploring the feasibility of an Earth Sciences Centre!