Tag Archives: gold

What is Fire Agate?

here is a long list of terms a gold miner needs to know. One of the less commonly known terms is fire agate, but it is an important term for a gold miner. Fire agate has rainbow colors, much like the gem opal. It is a semi-precious gemstone that formed naturally during volcanic activity in the earth’s tertiary periods. Fire agate can be found in limited areas, specifically in the southwestern United States and Mexico.

fire agateFire agate can range in value depending on the brightness of the stone and the amount of rare fire which is colored purple, green or blue. Less valuable fire agate has a duller fire and green or golden fire. To be considered high value, the fire has to be visible throughout the stone. Fire agate is often mistaken for opal. It has had a variety of names throughout history including Cinnamon Opal, Precious Peacock Stone and Opalescent Agate. Occasionally, fire agate and opal are found attached together.

A gold miner in the southwestern United States may also mine for fire agate at the same time. The gem can be found in the same areas that gold miners frequent in the Sonoma Desert region which is located in Arizona and California. One of the best sources for fire agate in Arizona is in the Little Horn Mountains which are near Quartzite and Oatman, Arizona. Gold miners and other gemstone miners frequent these areas because the fire agate found in the southwestern United States is more valuable due to the quality of its color and fire.

The Cuesta Fire Agate mine is located in Oatman, Arizona. This mine was founded in 1928 near an active area for gold miners. The public can pay a fee to mine for gold agate. Often, fire agate mines are located near the areas where gold miners are active or were active in the past. When gold miners are prospecting land, they are often on the lookout for semiprecious stones because these can be an additional source of profit. Fire agate is one such stone and is worth understanding because it can be a significant source of profit.

Gold and Copper Mining in Phoenix’s Bloody Basin

Gold and copper mining has been an active industry in the southwestern United States for over 100 years. While gold miners are still active in the southwest, Arizona has been one of the foremost copper mining areas in the last several years. Gold miners originally searched for gold in the area and ignored the rich reserves of copper. It wasn’t until the early 20th century that copper mines became active in the area.

The Bloody Basin originally got its name from conflicts between Native Americans and the United States army in the area during the late 19th century. No soldiers were killed but many Native Americans died during these conflicts. Today, the area is an active tourist and adventure site but it is still important to gold miners and copper miners. There are still active pockets of precious minerals in the area that area available for claims.

gold miner activityPlacer mines are sold to prospective gold miners interested in the Bloody Basin area. Most claims are smaller and range from approximately 20 to 40 acres. Associated placer claims are also available with sizes of up 160 acres and require an additional placer claim for every 20 acres in addition to the associated placer claim. Gold miners can purchase placer claims from companies who have already paid the fees for the initial placer mine. Gold miners and copper miners can also purchase an annual maintenance fee which ensures that they retain the ownership rights to their claim over time.

When gold miners purchase claims, they are purchasing the rights to the precious minerals in the land. They do not own the land itself. This is a common source of confusion because most land transactions don’t work in this way. The land itself is actually owned by the Federal Government and is regulated by the Bureau of Land Management. Gold miners and copper miners can camp out on the site for a designed number of days when they aren’t actively mining. Otherwise, the miners must work with the Bureau of Land Management to plan living temporary living quarters for miners while mining operations are active.

The Importance of Mineral Rich Black Sands

rich black sandsThere are many factors to consider when looking for promising gold mining claims. Gold prospecting is complicated but can be very rewarding if a good claim is identified. One of the most important factors in gold prospecting is finding a mineral rich area. These areas are much more likely to have high gold content. High gold content is often related to the presence of mineral rich black sands. These sands can contain gold and particles of other minerals. Some minerals in black sand include hematite and magnetite. Black sand is heavier that white sand due to its mineral content.

During gold prospecting, experts often recommend that prospectors look for the presence of mineral rich black sands. These sands are common in many creeks, but they don’t guarantee the presence of gold. Gold prospecting is a complex process and no one piece of information will lead you to a rich gold sources. In some areas of the country, finding black sands can lead you to a rich source of gold. Dig deeply in the area because as you go deeper, you will get more information about the soil. If the black sand is present in large quantities deeper in the ground, this is a good indication that you are near a good source of gold. When you’re gold prospecting, look for black mineral sands where they’re most often found; common locations include the area around boulders and creek bends.

Don’t merely rely on black sand. It’s necessary to follow other guidelines during gold prospecting. While looking for gold mining claims, prospectors should perform other tasks. To find mineral rich areas, prospectors should also examine the rocks that are exposed by the stream’s erosion. Rocks with a non-sedimentary layering are good gold prospecting indicators. The prospector should also examine the formation of stream paths and rock formations. Pay streaks, or rich gold sources, are often located in areas where the water flows downward. There are many other considerations when it comes to gold prospecting, but finding mineral rich black sands is a good factor to consider.

Why Gold Mines Are Abandoned

Why do gold mines end up abandoned, especially when there still gold in the area? There are many gold mines that have been abandoned over the years. There are a variety of reasons gold mines were abandoned. Sometimes, it had to do with productions. Other major factors were the effects of World War I and World War II.

Many ghost towns were once active mining towns. There are many of these towns in Arizona, where gold mining has been active since the early 19th century. One example is the Crown King mine in the Bradshaw Mountains. This mine area closed due to financial problems. The mines simply weren’t very productive and gold miners left the area for more prosperous regions.

abandoned mineCastle Dome City in Arizona was once an active mining town. Mining efforts resulted in significant challenges in the mine’s early days due to conflict with Native Americans in the area. Like many mining towns during the World War I and World War II, mining efforts declined. Equipment was confiscated from many small mining operations so that it could be used for iron and led recovery efforts. The mining companies weren’t able to maintain operations without equipment. After the war, new or replacement mining equipment wasn’t available which permanently shut down many mines.

Other, larger mines switched to lead mining to support war efforts. After the wars ended, the area went into decline because of the decreased demand for lead. People left the area and the town was abandoned. Many other Arizona gold mines faced a similar fate.

The Goldfield Ghost Town is another example of an abandoned site. During the 1890s, the town had saloons, boarding houses, a brewery and many other businesses. However, the town when into decline, the gold vein faulted. The price of ore dropped and the town went rapidly into decline.

Vulture City was another active mine during the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. At one time, Vulture was an extremely active and productive site at one time. The mine was shut down by a regulatory agency in the 1940s so that activity could be focused on the war effort. The shutdown order was disputed and the mine eventually reopened. However, there was not much enthusiasm for mining and Vulture City shut down for good.

How Gold Mining Has Changed from the 1800s to the Present

In the nineteenth century, gold was mined in a variety of ways. The long-standing tradition of panning for gold was commonly used by gold miners. The gold miners placed dirt with gold-bearing potential into a solid pan. The gold miners added water and swished the pan gently and shook it. This would bring smaller particles of gold to the surface.

Another technique gold miners used was cradling. Miners used a wood box that looked like a baby cradle. The cradle sifted out the larger pieces of dirt and sediment to find gold. This technique required two gold miners to operate the cradle. Gold miners also used a method called fossicking. The gold miners would pick at rock and stone using sharp tools until they found gold. Gold miners also used sieves which were pans with a mesh base. The water would drain through to separate out the gold.gold miner

Today, mining techniques incorporate different types of technology but some past methods are still used. When gold miners are evaluating or prospecting an area, they often use the panning technique to see if any gold is present in the area.

Most modern gold miners use a slice box to extract gold from placer deposits. The box is a channel with riffles in the bottom of the box. The box is placed in water or water is piped into the box. This creates a current. The riffles allow gold to drop out of the current and settle to the bottom.

Some gold miners use hard rock mining to extract gold from rock. This technique is the source of most of the world’s gold. This type of mining takes place underground. The mines feature spiral tunnels called declines or shafts which are vertical excavations. Some gold miners use adits which are excavations into the side of a hill. These techniques require heavy machinery to build and extract the gold. There are a number of other modern mining techniques that are adapted to the region and the type of equipment that is available. It goes without saying that modern techniques make use of machinery that was not available over 100 years ago.

The History of the Crowned King Mine

Gold mining history is rich with mines that are now abandoned ghost towns. The community of Crown King, Arizona is the site of a former gold mining community. The Crowned King Mine was the largest mine in the Bradshaw Mountains. The first claim made in the area was in 1875. More than 15 additional claims were made in the area over a span of about 40 years.

crown king mineThe Crowned King Mine was one of the most productive gold mining areas of its time. There are reports that $2,000,000 in gold was taken from the mine. That is $2,000,000 in 1899 gold prices which were around $20.67 an ounce. Today, gold is closer to $1700 per ounce, so The Crowned King Mine would have yielded an amazing amount of money at today’s prices.

The first claim in the Crown King group of mines was the Buckeye claim, which was established by Rod McKinnon in July of 1875. The Crowned King Mining Group was formed in January, 1888 by George P. Harrington, Noah Shekels and O.F. Place. Shekels went on to erect a saw mill in May of 1888 to support the gold mining operation.

The town of Crown King sprang up on the road that connected the mine to the saw mill. Railroad service came to the town in 1904 through the Bradshaw Mountain Railroad. At one time, the town had 500 buildings that included company stores, restaurants, a post office and boarding houses. Electricity reached the town in 1897.

The gold mining operations in the area were compromised by disagreements among the original mine developers. The Crowned King Mine was closed down by litigation in January, 1893. The gold mining operation opened again October, 1893 with a limited crew. In 1894, the mine began operating with a full crew. The gold mining operation was successful again but the legal feuds led to the gold mining operation being shut down again in 1899.

There are some buildings that are still in use near The Crowned King Mine. Tourists can visit the Crown King Saloon near the famous mine. The saloon was originally built in a nearby gold mining town called Oro Belle, which is now a ghost town.

The Ghost Town of Vulture City

vulture mineVulture City is a ghost town near Wickenburg in Maricopa County, Arizona. The Vulture Mine was a robust gold mining area during its heyday. The Vulture mine was discovered by Henry Wickenburg in 1863. Vulture City sprang up around the gold mining area. The mine was active from around 1863 through 1942. It produced over 340,000 ounces of gold and a significant amount of silver. The gold mining operation produced over $7,000,000 in gold based on the prices of the time period. The amount would be significantly more at today’s prices.

The town was notorious like most mining towns in that time period. There were many tales of murder, chaos and stagecoach robberies. The superintendent of the gold mining operation was killed during a stagecoach robbery. The Vulture Mine was closed down in 1942 due to World War II. All citizen efforts were supposed to be focused on the war effort instead of gold mining activity. The mine reopened after the war but did not prosper. It closed for good a few years later.

After mining ceased in the area, Vulture City rapidly became a ghost town. However, it is home to a famous legend. It is referred to as the site of the Other Lost Dutchman or Oro Blanco mine. The legend surrounds a gold mining professional of German original who worked around Wickenburg in the 1870s. Supposedly, he mined at night and snuck around to make it impossible for others to find the source of his gold. One night, he left to mine and never came home. Most people assumed he was killed by the Apaches in the area, but human remains were found in 1895 near a small prospect hole. The human remains were found with sacks of gold.

Vulture City is a fun attraction for tourists who are interested in gold mining. There are a variety of buildings that still stand. Tourists can take guided tours of the mine and the remaining structures. Because of its notorious history as a gold mining town, there are legends of paranormal activity in the area. In 2010, The Vulture mine was the subject of a Ghost Adventures episode on the Travel Channel.