For a Few Specks of Gold
June 2006 by Associated PressThe gold at the Ruby Hill Mine is microscopic, specks of specks that amount to a few ounces in every 100 tons of rock. It is embedded hundreds of feet beneath the rocky floor of the high desert, tawny and stubbled with sagebrush, toothy ridges dusted with snow.
Not too far from the pine-filled mountains, a young boy was exploring along Meadow Creek in Cabarrus County, North Carolina, one fine day in 1799. He discovered a beautiful rock that he took home and put to good use as a doorstop. Shortly thereafter, a jeweler stopped by to visit his folks, and as it turned out, the new doorstop was actually a 17-pound gold nugget. That nugget truly did open a door as it marked the beginning of the first gold rush in America.
• Making a noisy dredge more quiet
We can either surrender or draw a line in the sand and fight to hold the remaining mining rights we still have.
Because the old timers were so good at locating the better paying deposits—most of them along clay seams in this particular area—it makes good sense to try and locate these clay lines at old mining sites.
Since the founding of the original colony in 1836, minerals have proven a vital resource to fund the State’s development. Originally, copper was the lifeblood, being discovered not long after settlement.
The Tucson Mountains are immediately west of Tucson, in southern Arizona, and include residential areas of the city. The highest peak, Wasson (Amole) Peak, reaches 4,687 feet. It is part of the great Basin-Range physiographic province, characterized by fault-block mountain ranges separated by broad desert valleys.
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