Negotiations have been closed for the sale, by Handy Bros., of their entire coal mining interests and the control of the Huron and Western Railway, to stockholders of the Saginaw Coal company and affiliated interests, for an amount approximating $500,000.
The negotiations have been under way for some time past, and for several weeks the purchasers have had drilling outfits on the property, retesting the coal vein for the purpose of satisfying themselves as to its value, and the deal was practically closed late Saturday afternoon.
The deal includes Wolverine Mines No. 2 and 3, all of the coal lands held by Handy Bros. under lease, amounting to about 25,000 acres, and nearly all situated in Monitor, Williams, Kawkawlin, Beaver and Garfield townships, the eleven miles of railway known as the Huron and Western, which gives the mines connection with all of the railroads entering here.
The mines have a present output of about 800 tons of coal per day, but the No. 3 mine is just opened up, and entries are still being run. When entries are completed and room turning is announced this mine will have a capacity of from 1,000 to 1,200 tons daily, giving a total output of about 1,500 to 1,800 tons daily.
By this purchase the new owners come into possession of what is said to be the finest bed of coal in the entire state. The test drillings have shown clean coal running as high as eight feet in some places, and coal of the very best quality in Michigan. That the property will be further developed is almost an assured fact, as the two shafts now completed will take care of only a fraction of the territory owned by the company, and the sinking of more shafts is only a matter of a few years.
With the Wolverine mines in their control the Saginaw Coal company is in possession of eight producing coal mines, six of which are in Saginaw county, while they will soon have a ninth, that of the Shiawassee Coal company, which is sinking a shaft at Carr’s Landing.
“We are practically out of the coal business,” said T. L. Handy this morning. “The new owners will take possession of the property either Saturday or Monday next. I do not know much of what their plans are, nor do I know all of the parties interested. Among the stockholders are H. C. Potter, Jr., H. T. Wickes and R. M. Randall.
“I believe these people have got hold of the best coal proposition there is in the whole state. We have had some hesitation about selling, and at times have thought that we might better continue in the business and make some money out of it in the future, but they wanted the property and we feel pretty well satisfied with the deal.
“While we are out of the coal business, we are still heavily interested here and don’t intend to leave Bay City. When we first started in the coal business the box business was falling off rapidly. It looked as if it might become a thing of the past here and we were looking out for something else. Instead of falling off, however that business has increased wonderfully, and we are making more boxes today than we ever did before. I expect to devote my time to that, at least for the present.”
Handy Bros. are the owners of about a mile of river front and several hundred acres of land, formerly a part of the Wilder farm. There have been many rumors of their intention to put up a large manufacturing plant on this property, and these stories have been floating around more than ever for the past few weeks. Mr. Handy says, however, that there is nothing doing there at present, but admits that he is expecting something to turn up that will utilize a large part of the property before long.