Searching for a "vanished" mine


Recommended Posts

This thing is confounding me. It was a major producer of its time and closed for WWII like so many others. I have numerous sources giving it's location yet it does not show on any map I can find nor is there any remnants of it on the ground. Garmin Mapsource data shows one drift and one shaft very near the Mindat.com coord's but no surface disturbance exists there. No other map sources or satelite info show anything in the area yet numerous historic references place it there along with a 4 stamp mill and supporting structures. A visit to mines turned up nada also.

Any idea's for info I'm not thinking of to locate it?

A Au mine located X,000 feet East of XXXXXXXXX on xxx unpatented claims and at an altitude of about X,800 feet. Owned by the XXXXXXXXX Co.

Mineralization is a vein with 2 oreshoots. The North shoot at 22,000 tons and the XXXXXXX shoot estimated at 32,000 tons of ore. The country rock is much mixed, quartz diorite, diorite, quartz-porphyry and amphibolite. Well-defined fissure vein with quartz-sulfide filling. The country rock is sericitized and contains particles of sulfides.

Workings include openings for 4,400 feet along the vein; a shaft at 700 feet deep inclined 60º WNW and with levels at 110, 200, 300 and 400 feet. The 400 foot level connects with the XXXXXXX tunnel that is 3,100 feet long. Production was $104,000 from 13,000 tons of ore milled averaging $9/T (period values). Started 1XX7 and closed 19XX.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

With that amount of workings you certainly would expect to be able to see disturbances on the ground and unless it was in a heavy forrest area, you'd expect to be able to see it on aerial photos. Very strange that you are not able to locate it.

Chris

Link to comment
Share on other sites

With that amount of workings you certainly would expect to be able  to see disturbances on the ground and unless it was in a heavy forrest area, you'd expect to be able to see it on aerial photos. Very strange that you are not able to locate it.

Chris

Exactly why its bugging me so much Chris. I know it was there, or somewhere and I know where it fed ore to before the mill was built so it has to be in the area. I know the area well and there is no sign of it. Some pines but mostly all manzanita now since the fire years back. I've made 3 trips in looking now with new GPS readings to check each time and the ONLY thing I have found is an old small boiler that looks like they just walked away from it.

Something of that size with free milling Au should be beeped!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

LotsaLuck

I have a list of mine's by county name GPS for NV. and AZ. If you want to email me I'll look see what I show.It also shows what was the mine produce the most on down.( Gold Silver Lead)

This came from old Gov. records with some county's with a list of 3 to 5 hundred mines.

Chuck

Link to comment
Share on other sites

LotsaLuck

  I have a list of mine's by county name GPS for NV. and AZ. If you want to email me I'll look see what I show.It also shows what was the mine produce the most on down.( Gold Silver Lead)

  This came from old Gov. records with some county's with a list of 3 to 5 hundred mines.

  Chuck

I have the assay reports its just the location that confounds me. Can your "list" be searched by Lat/Lon so I don't have to give the registered name? That way if you are able to use the location info to give me the name I will know your information to be the same as what I've already tried without giving anything away. ;)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

LotsaLuck

It gives the Lat/Lon but you look first for county then name and Lat/Lon.If I got county Lat/Lon then I can give you what the book shows for that are near.Give me the county and if its not so much I'll fax it to you. I can't get it until maybe Sunday.

Email me and I'll see what I can do for you! Thats if you got a fax number.

Chuck

Link to comment
Share on other sites

lotsa you might try looking for historical aerial photographs (not satellite imagery but from plane flights). Most of US was photographed in 40's and 60's. Possible sources are Soil Conservation Service, Forest Service, or there are some historical aerial photo companies that have very large libraries (used by environmental firms for Phase I and II site assessments). You might also try the geography department (remote sensing group) of local or nearby universities and see if they have an aerial photo library or who they might reccommend for aerial photos of that area. Good luck hope you find it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

lotsa you might try looking for historical aerial photographs (not satellite imagery but from plane flights).  Most of US was photographed in 40's and 60's.  Possible sources are Soil Conservation Service, Forest Service, or there are some historical aerial photo companies that have very large libraries (used by environmental firms for Phase I and II site assessments).  You might also try the geography department (remote sensing group) of local or nearby universities and see if they have an aerial photo library  or who they might reccommend for aerial photos of that area.  Good luck hope you find it.

Oooohhh! I like this idea. Thanks.

The area has not be reclaimed, or if it was they missed a ton of stuff all around it. :rolleyes:

Good thing to keep in mind though.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Another possibility.... the area might have been "reclaimed" as is happening to some old mine sites out west here. BLM, NFS, or tree huggers just come in and bulldoze everything flat! :(

Lotsaluck.have you tried the county historical society ifone exists or local newspaper clippings from that era...Dave

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Dear Lotsa Luck;

You might say "DOHHHHH" after hearing my response to you, but have you made sure that the mine location datum matches your GPS datum? There's only about a gadzillion different datums and the cartographers can use pretty much as one of them that they please. If the two datums are not the same then you can very easily find yourself in the wrong county, or even the wrong state.

Your friend;

LAMAR

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On the GPS there are different Datums and if you use the wrong Datum your coordinates can be way off. Terraclient uses a differnt Datum than my Garmin Etrex GPS was set to when I bought it and it wasn't right till I reset the Datum. Maybe it's that?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Dear acronm;

The datums found on GPS recievers are there to correspond to the older cartographers and essayers datums that were to used to produce maps in the days before GPS, LORAN, etc. Datums are simply a formula for placing objects that are on a rounded surface (the face of the planet) onto a much smaller flat surface, ie the face of a map. If the two datums are wrong, then your GPS will not give the correct position on a map.

Your friend;

LAMAR

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Dear acronm;

The datums found on GPS recievers are there to correspond to the older cartographers and essayers datums that were to used to produce maps in the days before GPS, LORAN, etc. Datums are simply a formula for placing objects that are on a rounded surface (the face of the planet) onto a much smaller flat surface, ie the face of a map. If the two datums are wrong, then your GPS will not give the correct position on a map.

Your friend;

LAMAR

Yes I'm using my GPS correctly and even triangulated once by compass. BTW I teach GPS work. LOL

I have a new anomoly from an older airial pic I found last night to check this weekend. It's about 1/2 mile away from the historical records and right in a wash but looks possible. Not a pretty hike through the desert jungle that is there but if I find this place it will at the very least be virgin detector ground.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Lotsa,

Other things to consider:Were tailings shipped elsewhere to be milled?Was the potential for BACKFILLING present inside that mine?These may reduce surface workings/exposures.Check the nearest millsites RECORDS for info regarding other mines ores(your mystery mine) being processed there or elsewhere.Does your mine have ore EXCLUSIVE to the other mines in that district or area?If so...maybe you can use that as a means of backtracking to a particular GEOLOGICAL nieghborhood that would favor a certain mineralogical thumbprint?.......I got other suggestions as well.................

BIGFOOT

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Any idea's for info I'm not thinking of to locate it?

A Au mine located X,000 feet East of XXXXXXXXX on xxx unpatented claims and at an altitude of about X,800 feet. Owned by the XXXXXXXXX Co.

Mineralization is a vein with 2 oreshoots. The North shoot at 22,000 tons and the XXXXXXX shoot estimated at 32,000 tons of ore. The country rock is much mixed, quartz diorite, diorite, quartz-porphyry and amphibolite. Well-defined fissure vein with quartz-sulfide filling. The country rock is sericitized and contains particles of sulfides.

Workings include openings for 4,400 feet along the vein; a shaft at 700 feet deep inclined 60º WNW and with levels at 110, 200, 300 and 400 feet. The 400 foot level connects with the XXXXXXX tunnel that is 3,100 feet long. Production was $104,000 from 13,000 tons of ore milled averaging $9/T (period values). Started 1XX7 and closed 19XX.

Lotsa Luck,

I remember reading about this in some of my literature, just can't seem to find it again. If you'd like, send a PM with name or coord's and I'll see what info I can find about it in our program. Don't worry :( , I'll keep it to myself ! :D

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Maybe it was backfilled and graded as part of the environmental mitigation, or to pre-empt site injury liabilities. A lot of mines have gone this way, either from BLM intervention (minimal), or State mine programs (more likely), or county code enforcement mandates (areas with big populations), or mine owners that have other plans.

Basically, if you hold an active mining claim that includes old shafts and openings left there by previous claim holders, you are now considered to be the responsible (and liable) party, and may be forced into abating such problems. It doesn't matter if your claim is on federal land, by claiming a tract, you voluntarily assumed all legal liability for mine-related hazards, whether spelled out or implied.

If the hazard is on private property, as in a mine patent, county or municipal code enforcement, or any state arm can force you, as the legal property owner, to abate such hazards, regardless of how or when the mine openings came into being.

If the land is on open federal land, many times the State has to abate the openings, though such work is regularly taken in by AGCs or other community volunteers that want to add another divot to their corporate goodwill plaque.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

besides, $9/ton value isn't all that much (though considered high-grade by today's miners using chemical leaching). That's only 1/2 oz gold distributed in a 3x3x3-ft cube of rock. based on $20/oz gold market; less than that if $35/oz.

A lot of gold ore of that caliber cannot be detected using a metal detector, unless the 1/2 oz is in a free and solid piece, and not encumbered by metal oxides, sulphides, carbonates. The gold in such ore is usually not visble as such but looks gray, being mixed into the batter with other elements.

As for milling, does your report state that the gold was free milling or just mill value? Free milling means that the gold ore, when crushed, would yield metallic gold particles on a wilfrey table. anything else would require chemical leaching or reduction. The difference between the two is that the first method (free-Milling) is a whole lot cheaper and provides the take almost immediately.

Anglos, in the 19th century, weren't particularly informed about complex mining process, that being the reason many mine ores were shipped to Wales, Cornwall, or Mexico for processing and reduction.

Compare this to the money your mine paid, and most profits would have gone back into mine development, making it a shaky business at best, especially given the underground development work. I would almost bet the bulk financing came from investors who never had any chance of a dividend or other return.

Lotsa Luck finding your site. it may be out there still. don't ever discount mistaken coordinates, re-surveys, re-alignments, and misplotted original surveys to trip you up. I come across such errors all the time. Some plots may be off only in coordinates, some a few feet away, and some miles away. Springs, mountains, valleys, gulches and more had different names than today, and if you don't research the site using old maps, you could be shooting yourself in the foot right there. Even revised USGS maps contain place name errors because much to the local history has been forgotten and those who know the difference are since dead.

If that isn't enough, even rangers use motion sensors to figure out who is doing what and where, and when.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As for milling, does your report state that the gold was free milling or just mill value?  Free milling means that the gold ore, when crushed, would yield metallic gold particles on a wilfrey table.  anything else would require chemical leaching or reduction.  The difference between the two  is that the first method (free-Milling) is a whole lot cheaper and provides the take almost immediately.

It was and still is free milling gold with gold visible in the vien on the lower level. Looks like the mine had vulg's in the vien that must have been high grade due to the way they stoped them out. Didn't have time to detect the drainage but I think it's worthy of some time since being so remote its not been touched by modern beepers. The place needs some major brush clearing.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

great. just remember that fresh air affects rock inside of a mine, and causes it to deteriorate. How much depends on the locale and country rock type. Gas such as carbon dioxide collects in low spots, even in ventilated mines so take an air pack in if you expect to spelunk. any thing you touch can come down on you, more if you plan on digging out samples.

The same is true if the mine was left only a year ago, as 30 years ago. If at all possible, get you samples from outside. Inside could be a coffin, and I know more than one mine rescue party that wouldn't go in to retrieve the body due to the above concerns.

Understand that I am not trying to discourage you in your quest. it just pays immensely to know the neighborhood and what may lurk. You can also count on acid water, rotten wood (though it looks new), non-existent ladders, shafts without an exit and deep water. Go with a buddy, and leave him outside in case you need help. People and their kids go in all the time. if you start feeling dizzy or faint, you may not be able to get out at all. trust me. Reno Chris could tell you a story about peavine on this line.

Mining is serious business, and you had better know what you are doing if you want to come out alive. No matter how well you play video poker, there's always a losing hand just around the corner.

And, you always find what you're not looking for.

Lots of Luck, Lotsaluck!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share