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Christmas Gift Mine, Ophir Mountain, Darwin District, Darwin Hills, Inyo Co., California, USA

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Latitude & Longitude (WGS84): 36° 18' 13'' North , 117° 35' 35'' West
Latitude & Longitude (decimal): 36.30361,-117.59306
GeoHash:G#: 9qkqs0g7g
Locality type:Mine
Köppen climate type:BSk : Cold semi-arid (steppe) climate


A Christmas Gift to all - entered into MinDat, December 25, 2002.

A former Pb-Ag-Au-Cu mine located in sec. 11 & 12, T19S, R40E, MDM, 1.6 km (1.0 mile) NNE of Ophir Mountain (coordinates of record), and about 2.5 miles N of Darwin (at the end of a Jeep track with a loop like the eye of a needle (see Geologic Map in Special Report 51)). MRDS database stated accuracy for this location is 10 meters. Updated description and position N36.303540 W117.5929999 by Richard Muster, coordinates taken at the remains of the Christmas Gift shaft in the year 2009 using an Ashtech MM6 device.

The New Coso Mining Co. obtained the Lucky Jim and Christmas Gift Mines in 1875, and they developed both properties rapidly. Up to 1877 the production amounted for both mines to approximately 227,000 ounces of Ag and 1,900,000 pounds of Pb. The Christmas Gift mine was worked extensively in 1875 and 1876
In 1894 the Skinner family took over the mine and it was operated with interruptions until 1948. From 1894 until 1926 it produced about 970,000 pounds of Pb, 82,000 pounds of Ag, 11,000 pounds of Cu and 68 ounces of Au.

Mineralization is a Pb-Ag-Cu-Au deposit hosted in calc-hornfels. The ore body strikes N40E and dips 80NW, at a length of 91.44 meters. Stratified tactite has been intruded by numerous dikes and irregular offshoots from the Darwin granodiorite stock. It is also cut by an intricate system of fissures and faults. he tactite strikes N30W, and dips S30-40W. Local rocks include Carboniferous marine rocks, unit 2 (SE California Carbonate Assemblage).

Local geologic structures include a fault located on 200 feet NE of the shaft. It strikes N70E and dips 75S.

Workings include underground openings with a length of 1,036.32 meters and an overall depth of 121.92 meters, and comprised of a 400 foot vertical shaft and 3,000 feet of drifts (per USGS MRDS database). The mine workings consisted of 5 deeper shafts and a number of shallower shafts, plus several adits with a total length of 600 feet, with many crosscuts.

The Christmas Gift shaft was sunk on the vein to a depth of 250 feet, and a wince extends 126 feet below the 250-foot level. There are approximately 3,000 feet of drifts from the shafts and the winze. The Johnny John shaft is reported by Norm and Stewart (1951, p. 59) to be 250 feet deep, but is now inaccessible. The other 3 shafts are 90 to 100 feet deep.

Production data are found in: Goodwin, Joseph Grant (1957).

Estimated production (as presented in the USGS MRDS database): $500,000 (period values); assaying 15-30% Pb, 20-30 ounces Ag/ton, plus a little Au.

Select Mineral List Type

Standard Detailed Strunz Dana Chemical Elements

Mineral List


14 valid minerals.

Detailed Mineral List:

Anglesite
Formula: PbSO4
Reference: Emmons and Becker (1885) Statistics and Technology of the precious Metals. Census reports Tenth census. June 1, 1880, Volume 13 By United States. Census office. 10th census, 1880, United States. Census Office; Knopf, Adolf (1914a), The Darwin silver-lead mining district, California: USGS Bulletin 580: 1-18
Aragonite
Formula: CaCO3
Calcite
Formula: CaCO3
Colour: White
Fluorescence: Bright orange (SW UV).
Description: Very unusual banded, massive calcite (based on analysis) fluorescent bright orange and appearing identical to fluorescent wollastonite.
Reference: D. Kim Cathcart, Las Vegas, NV; Emmons and Becker (1885) Statistics and Technology of the precious Metals. Census reports Tenth census. June 1, 1880, Volume 13 By United States. Census office. 10th census, 1880, United States. Census Office
Cerussite
Formula: PbCO3
Reference: Emmons and Becker (1885) Statistics and Technology of the precious Metals. Census reports Tenth census. June 1, 1880, Volume 13 By United States. Census office. 10th census, 1880, United States. Census Office; Knopf, Adolf (1914a), The Darwin silver-lead mining district, California: USGS Bulletin 580: 1-18
Diopside
Formula: CaMgSi2O6
Reference: Knopf, Adolf (1914a), The Darwin silver-lead mining district, California: USGS Bulletin 580: 1-18
Fluorite
Formula: CaF2
Reference: Knopf, Adolf (1914a), The Darwin silver-lead mining district, California: USGS Bulletin 580: 1-18
Galena
Formula: PbS
Reference: Emmons and Becker (1885) Statistics and Technology of the precious Metals. Census reports Tenth census. June 1, 1880, Volume 13 By United States. Census office. 10th census, 1880, United States. Census Office; Knopf, Adolf (1914a), The Darwin silver-lead mining district, California: USGS Bulletin 580: 1-18
Hemimorphite
Formula: Zn4Si2O7(OH)2 · H2O
Habit: Radial groups
Description: Occurs as radial groups of crystals.
Reference: Knopf, Adolf (1914a), The Darwin silver-lead mining district, California: USGS Bulletin 580: 12; Murdoch, Joseph & Robert W. Webb (1942), Notes on some minerals from southern California, III: American Mineralogist: 27: 324; Hall, Wayne Everett & E.M. Mackevett (1958), Economic geology of the Darwin quadrangle, Inyo County, California: Calif Division of Mines Special Report 51, 77 pp.: 63-64.; Knopf, Adolf (1914a), The Darwin silver-lead mining district, California: USGS Bulletin 580: 1-18
Hydrozincite
Formula: Zn5(CO3)2(OH)6
Luzonite
Formula: Cu3AsS4
Reference: Calif. Journal of Mines and Geology, Vol. 34; p.434, 554.
Pyrite
Formula: FeS2
Reference: Knopf, Adolf (1914a), The Darwin silver-lead mining district, California: USGS Bulletin 580: 1-18
Quartz
Formula: SiO2
Reference: Knopf, Adolf (1914a), The Darwin silver-lead mining district, California: USGS Bulletin 580: 1-18
Quartz var: Jasper
Reference: Knopf, Adolf (1914a), The Darwin silver-lead mining district, California: USGS Bulletin 580: 1-18
Tennantite
Formula: Cu6[Cu4(Fe,Zn)2]As4S13
Reference: Calif. Journal of Mines and Geology, Vol. 34; p.434, 554.
Wollastonite
Formula: CaSiO3
Description: Abundant. Also occurs as large crystals in the contact limestones of this area.
Reference: Knopf, Adolf (1914a), The Darwin silver-lead mining district, California: USGS Bulletin 580: 1-18; […(abstract): Geol. Zentralbl., Band 21: 597]: 12; Kelley, Vincent Cooper (1938), Geology and ore deposits of the Darwin silver-lead mining district, Inyo County, California: California Division Mines Report 34: 538; Hall, Wayne Everett & E.M. Mackevett (1958), Economic geology of the Darwin quadrangle, Inyo County, California: Calif Division of Mines Special Report 51, 77 pp.: 63-64; Murdoch, Joseph & Robert W. Webb (1966), Minerals of California, Centennial Volume (1866-1966): California Division Mines & Geology Bulletin 189: 386.

List of minerals arranged by Strunz 10th Edition classification

Group 2 - Sulphides and Sulfosalts
'Galena'2.CD.10PbS
Luzonite2.KA.10Cu3AsS4
Pyrite2.EB.05aFeS2
Tennantite2.GB.05Cu6[Cu4(Fe,Zn)2]As4S13
Group 3 - Halides
'Fluorite'3.AB.25CaF2
Group 4 - Oxides and Hydroxides
Quartz4.DA.05SiO2
var: Jasper4.DA.05SiO2
Group 5 - Nitrates and Carbonates
'Aragonite'5.AB.15CaCO3
'Calcite'5.AB.05CaCO3
'Cerussite'5.AB.15PbCO3
'Hydrozincite'5.BA.15Zn5(CO3)2(OH)6
Group 7 - Sulphates, Chromates, Molybdates and Tungstates
'Anglesite'7.AD.35PbSO4
Group 9 - Silicates
'Diopside'9.DA.15CaMgSi2O6
'Hemimorphite'9.BD.10Zn4Si2O7(OH)2 · H2O
Wollastonite9.DG.05CaSiO3

List of minerals arranged by Dana 8th Edition classification

Group 2 - SULFIDES
AmXp, with m:p = 1:1
Galena2.8.1.1PbS
AmBnXp, with (m+n):p = 1:2
Pyrite2.12.1.1FeS2
Group 3 - SULFOSALTS
ø = 4
Luzonite3.2.2.1Cu3AsS4
3 <ø < 4
Tennantite3.3.6.2Cu6[Cu4(Fe,Zn)2]As4S13
Group 9 - NORMAL HALIDES
AX2
Fluorite9.2.1.1CaF2
Group 14 - ANHYDROUS NORMAL CARBONATES
A(XO3)
Calcite14.1.1.1CaCO3
Cerussite14.1.3.4PbCO3
Group 16a - ANHYDROUS CARBONATES CONTAINING HYDROXYL OR HALOGEN
Hydrozincite16a.4.1.1Zn5(CO3)2(OH)6
Group 28 - ANHYDROUS ACID AND NORMAL SULFATES
AXO4
Anglesite28.3.1.3PbSO4
Group 56 - SOROSILICATES Si2O7 Groups, With Additional O, OH, F and H2O
Si2O7 Groups and O, OH, F, and H2O with cations in [4] coordination
Hemimorphite56.1.2.1Zn4Si2O7(OH)2 · H2O
Group 65 - INOSILICATES Single-Width,Unbranched Chains,(W=1)
Single-Width Unbranched Chains, W=1 with chains P=2
Diopside65.1.3a.1CaMgSi2O6
Single-Width Unbranched Chains, W=1 with chains P=3
Wollastonite65.2.1.1cCaSiO3
Group 75 - TECTOSILICATES Si Tetrahedral Frameworks
Si Tetrahedral Frameworks - SiO2 with [4] coordinated Si
Quartz75.1.3.1SiO2
Unclassified Minerals, Rocks, etc.
Aragonite-CaCO3
Quartz
var: Jasper
-SiO2

List of minerals for each chemical element

HHydrogen
H HemimorphiteZn4Si2O7(OH)2 · H2O
H HydrozinciteZn5(CO3)2(OH)6
CCarbon
C AragoniteCaCO3
C CalciteCaCO3
C CerussitePbCO3
C HydrozinciteZn5(CO3)2(OH)6
OOxygen
O AnglesitePbSO4
O AragoniteCaCO3
O CalciteCaCO3
O CerussitePbCO3
O DiopsideCaMgSi2O6
O HemimorphiteZn4Si2O7(OH)2 · H2O
O HydrozinciteZn5(CO3)2(OH)6
O QuartzSiO2
O WollastoniteCaSiO3
FFluorine
F FluoriteCaF2
MgMagnesium
Mg DiopsideCaMgSi2O6
SiSilicon
Si DiopsideCaMgSi2O6
Si HemimorphiteZn4Si2O7(OH)2 · H2O
Si QuartzSiO2
Si WollastoniteCaSiO3
SSulfur
S AnglesitePbSO4
S GalenaPbS
S LuzoniteCu3AsS4
S PyriteFeS2
S TennantiteCu6[Cu4(Fe,Zn)2]As4S13
CaCalcium
Ca AragoniteCaCO3
Ca CalciteCaCO3
Ca DiopsideCaMgSi2O6
Ca FluoriteCaF2
Ca WollastoniteCaSiO3
FeIron
Fe PyriteFeS2
CuCopper
Cu LuzoniteCu3AsS4
Cu TennantiteCu6[Cu4(Fe,Zn)2]As4S13
ZnZinc
Zn HemimorphiteZn4Si2O7(OH)2 · H2O
Zn HydrozinciteZn5(CO3)2(OH)6
AsArsenic
As LuzoniteCu3AsS4
As TennantiteCu6[Cu4(Fe,Zn)2]As4S13
PbLead
Pb AnglesitePbSO4
Pb CerussitePbCO3
Pb GalenaPbS

Regional Geology

This geological map and associated information on rock units at or nearby to the coordinates given for this locality is based on relatively small scale geological maps provided by various national Geological Surveys. This does not necessarily represent the complete geology at this locality but it gives a background for the region in which it is found.

Click on geological units on the map for more information. Click here to view full-screen map on Macrostrat.org

Quaternary - Miocene
0 - 23.03 Ma



ID: 3185380
Cenozoic sedimentary rocks

Age: Cenozoic (0 - 23.03 Ma)

Lithology: Sedimentary rocks

Reference: Chorlton, L.B. Generalized geology of the world: bedrock domains and major faults in GIS format: a small-scale world geology map with an extended geological attribute database. doi: 10.4095/223767. Geological Survey of Canada, Open File 5529. [154]

Cisuralian - Mississippian
272.95 - 358.9 Ma



ID: 2908410
Carboniferous marine rocks, unit 2 (SE California Carbonate Assemblage)

Age: Paleozoic (272.95 - 358.9 Ma)

Stratigraphic Name: Anvil Spring Formation; Bird Spring Formation; Tihvipah Limestone; Monte Cristo Limestone; Santa Rosa Hills Limestone; Perdido Group; Stone Canyon Formation; Tin Mountain Limestone; Indian Springs Formation

Description: Shale, sandstone, conglomerate, limestone, dolomite, chert, hornfels, marble, quartzite; in part pyroclastic rocks

Comments: Southeastern California carbonate assemblage (eastern Mojave Desert and southeastern Death Valley area). Consists primarily of limestone with minor siltstone and sandstone.Includes some rocks of Early Permian age, Original map source: Saucedo, G.J., Bedford, D.R., Raines, G.L., Miller, R.J., and Wentworth, C.M., 2000, GIS Data for the Geologic Map of California, California Department of Conservation, Division of Mines and Geology, CD-ROM 2000-07, scale 1:750,000.

Lithology: Major:{limestone}, Minor:{sandstone,siltstone mudstone}

Reference: Horton, J.D., C.A. San Juan, and D.B. Stoeser. The State Geologic Map Compilation (SGMC) geodatabase of the conterminous United States. doi: 10.3133/ds1052. U.S. Geological Survey Data Series 1052. [133]

Data and map coding provided by Macrostrat.org, used under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License

References

Sort by

Year (asc) Year (desc) Author (A-Z) Author (Z-A)
Knopf, Adolph (1914) The Darwin Lead-Silver Mining District California, USGS Bulletin 580-A, 19 p.
Kelley, Vincent Cooper (1938), Geology and ore deposits of the Darwin silver-lead mining district, Inyo County, California: California Division Mines Report 34: 538.
Murdoch, Joseph & Robert W. Webb (1942), Notes on some minerals from southern California, III: American Mineralogist: 27: 324.
Wilson L. Kenneth (1943), Tungsten deposits of the Darwin Hills Inyo County, California Economic Geology: 38.
Norman, L.A., and Stewart, R.A. (1951), Mines and Mineral Resources of Inyo County, California, California Division of Mines and Geology, Report 47: 59.
Goodwin, Joseph Grant (1957) Lead and zinc in California. California Journal of Mines and Geology, Division of Mines (Report 53): 53(3&4): 462.
Hall, Wayne Everett & E.M. Mackevett (1958), Economic geology of the Darwin quadrangle, Inyo County, California: Calif Division of Mines Special Report 51, 77 pp.: 63-64.
Hall, Wayne Everett & Edward M. Mackevett (1963), Geology and ore deposits of the Darwin quadrangle, Inyo County, California: USGS Professional Paper 368: 63.
Murdoch, Joseph & Robert W. Webb (1966), Minerals of California, Centennial Volume (1866-1966): California Division Mines & Geology Bulletin 189: 217, 386.
Shumway, Gary L. (1980) Desert Fever: An Overview of Mining History of the California Desert Conservation Area.
Pemberton, H. Earl (1983), Minerals of California; Van Nostrand Reinholt Press: 102, 405, 513.
Cathcart, D. Kim (2002), Las Vegas, Nevada (personal communication with C. Lemanski, Jr., 2002).
USGS (2005), Mineral Resources Data System (MRDS): U.S. Geological Survey, Reston, Virginia, loc. file ID #10211798 & 10076619.
U.S. Bureau of Mines, Minerals Availability System (MAS) file ID #0060270130.

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