The Old Mine is the largest of a series of historic emery mines in Massachusetts known collectively as the Chester Emery Mines. It was first worked for iron in 1856. 1200 tons of ore were then mined and shipped to furnaces located in Hudson, Lenox, and Stockbridge. However, in 1864, the ore was actually discovered to be emery mixed with a high percentage of magnetite. Consequently, the mine was worked from 1868 for twenty or more years following, as an emery mine. The ore was crushed and transported to a mill constructed on site. Emery, being a mixture of corundum, magnetite, hematite and other minerals, was used for abrasives. It is believed the mine is almost completely worked out.
The Old Mine was entered through an upper and lower adit and was also worked through a series of stopes and shafts. There is approximately a 1/2 mile of tunnels underground.