Millington Quarry (Morris County Crushed Stone Co. Quarry; Tilcon Quarry), Bernards Township, Somerset Co., New Jersey, USA
Amygdaloidal cavities in the Hook Mountain (Third Watchung) basalt. Quarrying began in 1895, and continued on and off, until the early 1970's. After a period of inactivity, the quarry restarted in 1979. The quarry was mined aggressively producing over 1 million tons/year in many years. From the middle of the 1980's, until early 2007, mineral specimens were found in abundance. The mineralized zone has now been removed, and the pit is currently being refilled with trucked in rock and dirt, for a future housing development.
Photo: Frank A. Imbriacco III
The Millington Quarry was, scientifically, one of the most interesting of the basalt quarries in the region. Cummings (1985) described how mineral deposition was zoned vertically within amygdaloidal horizons. Subsequent to this publication it became apparent that secondary minerals at Millington (and also at the Chimney Rock Quarry) also exhibited other distinct distribution patterns (Cummings, 1988, 1998) These patterns were directly related to the varying porosity, hydraulic conductivity and glass content of the basalt and the distance of the deposition site from the fluid source in the sediments. They provided strong evidence that mineral deposition did not occur in a stagnant, burial metamorphic environment but resulted from actively circulating fluids moveing upward, out of the sediments and through the basalts.
Becker, M. (1998) Recent Mineral Finds at the Millington Quarry, Somerset County, New Jersey. Rocks & Minerals, 73:320-24.
Cummings, W. (1985) Mineralization at the Millington Quarry, New Jersey. Rocks & Minerals, 60:213-18.
Cummings, W. L., 1988, The Role of Sedimentary Connate Brines in the Mineralization of the Watchung Basalts: In Husch, J.M. and Hozik, M.J., Eds., Geology of the Central Newark Basin, Field Guide and Proceedings, Geological Association of New Jersey, fifth Annual Meeting, Pg. 135 – 147.
Cummings, W. L., 1998, Geology of the Chimney Rock Copper Occurrence, A Deposit Typical of the Watchung Basalts: In Puffer, J.H. Ed., The Economic Geology of Central New Jersey, Field Guide and Proceedings, Geological Association of New Jersey, fifteenth Annual Meeting, Pg. 29 – 49.
Cummings, W. (1999) Letters to the Editor, Millington Quarry. Rocks & Minerals, 74:149.
Kent, B.P. and Butkowski, B. (2000) Minerals of the Millington Quarry, Somerset County, New Jersey. Mineralogical Record, 31:399-411.
Maertens, J. (2007) Collecting Minerals at Tilcon's Millington Quarry. The Tilcon Times, Summer:9-10,26.
Manchester, J.G. (1931) The Minerals of New York City and Its Environs. New York Mineralogical Club Bulletin, 3:81.
Mineral Industry of New Jersey (1926):9.
Tschernich, R. (1992) Zeolites of the World, 67 p.
Wilson, W. (2007) Millington New Jersey. Mineralogical Record, 38:230-32.
52 entries listed. 39 valid minerals.
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