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Civilian Conservation Corps prospect (CCC prospect; Cook columbite prospect), Haddam, Middlesex Co., Connecticut, USA

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Latitude & Longitude (WGS84): 41° 27' 27'' North , 72° 30' 53'' West
Latitude & Longitude (decimal): 41.45750,-72.51472
GeoHash:G#: drk7vgh7k
Locality type:Prospect
Köppen climate type:Cfa : Humid subtropical climate


This 19th century prospect is near the old Smith brothers feldspar quarry (see http://www.mindat.org/loc-247029.html), but is in a separate granite pegmatite about 1000 feet south of the quarry. Both places are near the former Civilian Conservation Corps’ (CCC) Camp Filley barracks (built 1933) on Filley Road, at its intersection with Turkey Hill Road, in the Beaver Meadow District of Haddam. NOTE: The Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) was a government make-work program during the Great Depression. CCC recruits were put to work on all manner of public works projects from roads to roadside springs, foresting tasks and campgrounds, etc. They did not work the prospect, but simply lend the name to the place in 20th century references as there are few other landmarks.

This locality, which was never a quarry and had columbite crystals so large and abundant that they were collected by hand from the outcrop at least as far back as the mid-19th century (see below) is thus the most likely candidate for the poorly-documented place where the first columbite crystal was collected by Governor Winthrop in the late 17th century. Details regarding it are found here: http://www.mindat.org/loc-234868.html. It is also just downriver from Winthrop's gold mine at Great Hill near what is now Cobalt, so would have been accessible to him at that time, before any place in the area had their current names. Perhaps it is not a coincidence that Nathaniel Cook was collecting columbites here just 2 years after the catalog description of the first columbite was published in the American Journal of Science in 1844.

The prospect occurs in a narrow, 0.7 to 1.3-meter-wide, very-coarse-grained pegmatite dike that cross-cuts a much larger, barren, fine-grained pegmatite that makes up most of the outcrop. Besides the usual pegmatite minerals albite, very large tan microcline (up to 0.7 meters across), smoky quartz and abundant muscovite books over 15 cm, beryl is the most common accessory. Based on collecting trips since about 1990, beryl crystals range in quality from very corroded and opaque to gem grade and in color from nearly colorless, through pale green and yellow to deep golden honey. Pale yellow and green beryl crystals are typically embedded in the pegmatite and a re heavily fractures. Crystals are up to 2.5 to 5 cm in diameter and 15 or 18 cm long, although at one point there were multiple yellow beryl crystals there that were measured in decimeters! During attempted collecting, they crumbled apart.

Other minerals found since 1990 include well-formed garnet crystals (probably almandine based on XRF analyses of pegmatitic garnets from the district), excellent columbite-(Fe) (sometimes embedded in yellow beryl), micro-sized uraninites, and massive pale green fluorapatite.

Documented history of the locality is brief or obscure, primarily because until the camp was built, there were no local landmarks. Working backwards in time from this brief mention by Williams (circa 1945), "Near the C.C.C. Camp in Beaver Meadow, large crystals of Columbite occur with Yellow Beryl and Muscovite crystals in a pegmatite dyke", it is clear he also apparently wrote about the prospect in 1899, which is well before the CCC camp existed, but the general description of the location and the minerals fits: "Two miles South of the Court House near the Turkeyhill road Golden Beryl and Columbite are found in fine crystals."

Based on this information, the following account by Davis (1901) regarding columbite in Haddam fits the locality:

[Columbite] has been mined in the Beaver meadow district on land belonging to the Heber Brainerd estate, where it occurs in a coarse granite associated with colorless to light green transparent crystals of beryl. Many fine specimens were taken from here by Nathaniel Cook and are to be seen in the Peabody Museum and other collections. They were small as compared with crystals found in the adjoining town of Middletown, but were extremely well defined and had very brilliant faces.


Indeed, the closest home on the 1879 Middlesex county atlas is "H. Brainard".

The Haddam Historical Society has some information on quarry worker and later mineral collector and dealer Nathaniel Cook, mainly his financial account book that covers the years from about 1818 to 1850. While there are no notations in it by him regarding minerals, his son John Edwin Cook (1830-1859, he participated in the infamous John Brown raid at Harper's Ferry, Virginia, and was caught and hung) made account notes on 3 pages (date not included), which includes the sentence, “A mineral excursion for Prof Tiliman and Dr. Romer [or Rosner?] of Prussia.” Based on notes by Nathaniel Cook on adjacent pages, John's notes were probably made in the late 1840s to mid-1850s. He left Haddam by around 1857. The "Tiliman" may mean "Silliman", who is mentioned in this account by Hunt (1852) about a Haddam columbite and beryl locality that is vaguely located, but in detail fits the above modern and historic descriptions of the prospect in detail:

Columbite. - The specimen here described is from a locality at Haddam, Connecticut, in which the mineral was recognized by myself, while visiting the place, six years since. It occurs some two miles from the famous locality of chrysoberyl, where also columbite is met with in minute crystals, and is in a huge granitic vein traversing gneiss. The vein is made up of large cleavable forms of yellowish-white feldspar and brown muscovite, with quartz and beryl. The latter mineral is sometimes found in crystals four or five inches in diameter, and a foot or two in length; these are subtranslucent and brownish or greenish-yellow, while the smaller crystals are sometimes almost transparent, of a topaz-yellow or straw color, and if they were not fissured, would constitute gems. They are frequently modified by truncations of the terminal edges and solid angles, but the edges are rounded, and do not admit, of accurate admeasurement. The columbite occurs disseminated through the vein, alike in the feldspar, mica and beryl; some of the crystals were said to have been several ounces in weight, and had been carried out by amateur collectors as specular iron; a crystal since procured from the locality by Prof. Silliman, Jr., weighs 36 ounces. The smaller crystals were abundant and often beautifully perfect, some of them are imbedded in translucent yellow beryl, and have the form represented in figure 1, p. 401 of Dana’s Mineralogy, 3d edition.


Hunt also reports the columbite specific gravity as 5.85 and with three times as much Fe as Mn, this makes it columbite-(Fe) and very typical of the region. Note that Hunt mentions the locality is 2 miles from the chrysoberyl locality, which is indeed about 2 miles north (on Walkley Hill Road). The latter locality is not far from the court house mentioned by Williams (1899) as the landmark former locality is also 2 miles away from.

Based on the all of the above, it appears that the prospect was worked by Nathaniel Cook, at least from 1846 when Hunt was there, and was also visited by Benjamin Silliman, Jr. Son John Cook may have brought him there, or to another place Nathaniel was working. It was known about by local collectors in the later 19th and early 20th centuries, but lacking a name its specific location could not be easily described until the nearby CCC camp was built in 1933. There are many 19th century columbite crystals from Haddam, most of which are simply labeled with the town name, such as the one in depicted in Dana as mentioned by Hunt. Some came from the chrysoberyl locality, but these were typically small. It appears that larger ones may be attributable to this prospect.

Shepard (1870) described and analyzed columbite-(Fe) reportedly from a pegmatite at Nathaniel Cook's house. However, in an editorial footnote to Delafontaine (1877) the editors note that "Mr. Cook informs us that there is no such locality, and that it must have come from the columbite locality, a mile distant from it."

Collecting is allowed ONLY during permit dates issued by the State of Connecticut Dept. of Energy and Environmental Protection to educational groups (mineral clubs, schools, etc.). See their web site link below for details.

Alternative Label Names

This is a list of additional names that have been recorded for mineral labels associated with this locality in the minID database. This may include previous versions of the locality name hierarchy from mindat.org, data entry errors, and it may also include unconfirmed sublocality names or other names that can only be matched to this level.

CCC quarry
CCC Quarry Haddam Middlesex Co. Connecticut USA
CCC Prospect
CCC Quarry & Prospect

Select Mineral List Type

Standard Detailed Strunz Dana Chemical Elements

Mineral List


12 valid minerals.

Detailed Mineral List:

Albite
Formula: Na(AlSi3O8)
Colour: white
Reference: Harold Moritz collection
Almandine
Formula: Fe2+3Al2(SiO4)3
Colour: red
Description: XRF analyses of other pegmatitic garnets from the district indicate they are mostly almandine, with some spessartine component. Garnets from this locality have not been tested.
Reference: Harold Moritz collection
Beryl
Formula: Be3Al2(Si6O18)
Colour: pale green
Reference: http://www.lmscc.org/CCCQuarry.htm
Beryl var: Heliodor
Formula: Be3Al2(Si6O18)
Colour: yellow to orange-brown
Description: Typically in radiating groups with tiny columbites. Good gem crystals rare.
Reference: www.lmscc.org/CCCQuarry.htm; Williams (circa 1945)
Columbite-(Fe)
Formula: FeNb2O6
Habit: elongated, tabular to blocky and equant
Colour: black with iridescence
Description: Crystals vary from microscopic ones typically attached to beryls to large masses over 36 pounds in pegmatite matrix. They can be tabular, elongated or blocky and equant. Typically iridescent. Besides the 19th century wet chemical analyses given in the reference, also confirmed by Raman spectroscopy by Paul Bartholomew, U. of New Haven.
Reference: Hunt, T. S. (1852): Examination of some American Minerals. American Journal Of Science: s. 2: 14: 40-1.
Fluorapatite
Formula: Ca5(PO4)3F
Colour: pale green
Fluorescence: yellow
Reference: www.lmscc.org/CCCQuarry.htm
Marcasite
Formula: FeS2
Habit: anhedral
Colour: dark greenish-brassy
Description: Anhedral masses to a few cm in massive quartz that rapidly decompose and produce rusty stains around a small void.
Reference: Harold Moritz collection
Microcline
Formula: K(AlSi3O8)
Colour: tan
Reference: www.lmscc.org/CCCQuarry.htm
Muscovite
Formula: KAl2(AlSi3O10)(OH)2
Description: Mostly anhedral masses, a few sub to euhedral crystals were found at the prospect.
Reference: www.lmscc.org/CCCQuarry.htm
Quartz
Formula: SiO2
Colour: smoky
Description: Mostyl massive, the only crystals come from tiny pockets.
Reference: www.lmscc.org/CCCQuarry.htm
Schorl
Formula: Na(Fe2+3)Al6(Si6O18)(BO3)3(OH)3(OH)
Habit: prismatic
Colour: black
Description: Mostly small crystals, not common.
Reference: Harold Moritz collection
Spessartine ?
Formula: Mn2+3Al2(SiO4)3
Colour: red
Description: XRF analyses of other pegmatitic garnets from the district indicate they are mostly almandine, with some spessartine component but not enough to change the species. Garnets from this locality have not been tested.
Reference: http://www.lmscc.org/CCCQuarry.htm
Uraninite
Formula: UO2
Colour: black
Description: Tiny crystals rarely found.
Reference: http://www.lmscc.org/CCCQuarry.htm

List of minerals arranged by Strunz 10th Edition classification

Group 2 - Sulphides and Sulfosalts
Marcasite2.EB.10aFeS2
Group 4 - Oxides and Hydroxides
'Columbite-(Fe)'4.DB.35FeNb2O6
Quartz4.DA.05SiO2
Uraninite4.DL.05UO2
Group 8 - Phosphates, Arsenates and Vanadates
'Fluorapatite'8.BN.05Ca5(PO4)3F
Group 9 - Silicates
'Albite'9.FA.35Na(AlSi3O8)
'Almandine'9.AD.25Fe2+3Al2(SiO4)3
'Beryl'9.CJ.05Be3Al2(Si6O18)
var: Heliodor9.CJ.05Be3Al2(Si6O18)
Microcline9.FA.30K(AlSi3O8)
Muscovite9.EC.15KAl2(AlSi3O10)(OH)2
Schorl9.CK.05Na(Fe2+3)Al6(Si6O18)(BO3)3(OH)3(OH)
Spessartine ?9.AD.25Mn2+3Al2(SiO4)3

List of minerals arranged by Dana 8th Edition classification

Group 2 - SULFIDES
AmBnXp, with (m+n):p = 1:2
Marcasite2.12.2.1FeS2
Group 5 - OXIDES CONTAINING URANIUM OR THORIUM
AXO2·xH2O
Uraninite5.1.1.1UO2
Group 8 - MULTIPLE OXIDES CONTAINING NIOBIUM,TANTALUM OR TITANIUM
AB2O6
Columbite-(Fe)8.3.2.2FeNb2O6
Group 41 - ANHYDROUS PHOSPHATES, ETC.CONTAINING HYDROXYL OR HALOGEN
A5(XO4)3Zq
Fluorapatite41.8.1.1Ca5(PO4)3F
Group 51 - NESOSILICATES Insular SiO4 Groups Only
Insular SiO4 Groups Only with cations in [6] and >[6] coordination
Almandine51.4.3a.2Fe2+3Al2(SiO4)3
Spessartine ?51.4.3a.3Mn2+3Al2(SiO4)3
Group 61 - CYCLOSILICATES Six-Membered Rings
Six-Membered Rings with [Si6O18] rings; possible (OH) and Al substitution
Beryl61.1.1.1Be3Al2(Si6O18)
Six-Membered Rings with borate groups
Schorl61.3.1.10Na(Fe2+3)Al6(Si6O18)(BO3)3(OH)3(OH)
Group 71 - PHYLLOSILICATES Sheets of Six-Membered Rings
Sheets of 6-membered rings with 2:1 layers
Muscovite71.2.2a.1KAl2(AlSi3O10)(OH)2
Group 75 - TECTOSILICATES Si Tetrahedral Frameworks
Si Tetrahedral Frameworks - SiO2 with [4] coordinated Si
Quartz75.1.3.1SiO2
Group 76 - TECTOSILICATES Al-Si Framework
Al-Si Framework with Al-Si frameworks
Albite76.1.3.1Na(AlSi3O8)
Microcline76.1.1.5K(AlSi3O8)
Unclassified Minerals, Rocks, etc.
Beryl
var: Heliodor
-Be3Al2(Si6O18)

List of minerals for each chemical element

HHydrogen
H MuscoviteKAl2(AlSi3O10)(OH)2
H SchorlNa(Fe32+)Al6(Si6O18)(BO3)3(OH)3(OH)
BeBeryllium
Be BerylBe3Al2(Si6O18)
Be Beryl (var: Heliodor)Be3Al2(Si6O18)
BBoron
B SchorlNa(Fe32+)Al6(Si6O18)(BO3)3(OH)3(OH)
OOxygen
O AlbiteNa(AlSi3O8)
O AlmandineFe32+Al2(SiO4)3
O BerylBe3Al2(Si6O18)
O Columbite-(Fe)FeNb2O6
O FluorapatiteCa5(PO4)3F
O Beryl (var: Heliodor)Be3Al2(Si6O18)
O MicroclineK(AlSi3O8)
O MuscoviteKAl2(AlSi3O10)(OH)2
O QuartzSiO2
O SchorlNa(Fe32+)Al6(Si6O18)(BO3)3(OH)3(OH)
O SpessartineMn32+Al2(SiO4)3
O UraniniteUO2
FFluorine
F FluorapatiteCa5(PO4)3F
NaSodium
Na AlbiteNa(AlSi3O8)
Na SchorlNa(Fe32+)Al6(Si6O18)(BO3)3(OH)3(OH)
AlAluminium
Al AlbiteNa(AlSi3O8)
Al AlmandineFe32+Al2(SiO4)3
Al BerylBe3Al2(Si6O18)
Al Beryl (var: Heliodor)Be3Al2(Si6O18)
Al MicroclineK(AlSi3O8)
Al MuscoviteKAl2(AlSi3O10)(OH)2
Al SchorlNa(Fe32+)Al6(Si6O18)(BO3)3(OH)3(OH)
Al SpessartineMn32+Al2(SiO4)3
SiSilicon
Si AlbiteNa(AlSi3O8)
Si AlmandineFe32+Al2(SiO4)3
Si BerylBe3Al2(Si6O18)
Si Beryl (var: Heliodor)Be3Al2(Si6O18)
Si MicroclineK(AlSi3O8)
Si MuscoviteKAl2(AlSi3O10)(OH)2
Si QuartzSiO2
Si SchorlNa(Fe32+)Al6(Si6O18)(BO3)3(OH)3(OH)
Si SpessartineMn32+Al2(SiO4)3
PPhosphorus
P FluorapatiteCa5(PO4)3F
SSulfur
S MarcasiteFeS2
KPotassium
K MicroclineK(AlSi3O8)
K MuscoviteKAl2(AlSi3O10)(OH)2
CaCalcium
Ca FluorapatiteCa5(PO4)3F
MnManganese
Mn SpessartineMn32+Al2(SiO4)3
FeIron
Fe AlmandineFe32+Al2(SiO4)3
Fe Columbite-(Fe)FeNb2O6
Fe MarcasiteFeS2
Fe SchorlNa(Fe32+)Al6(Si6O18)(BO3)3(OH)3(OH)
NbNiobium
Nb Columbite-(Fe)FeNb2O6
UUranium
U UraniniteUO2

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

Devonian - Silurian
358.9 - 443.8 Ma



ID: 3186140
Paleozoic sedimentary and volcanic rocks

Age: Paleozoic (358.9 - 443.8 Ma)

Lithology: Mudstone-carbonate-sandstone-conglomerate

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]

Late Ordovician - Middle Ordovician
443.8 - 470 Ma



ID: 2978277
Collins Hill Formation

Age: Ordovician (443.8 - 470 Ma)

Stratigraphic Name: Collins Hill Formation

Description: ( = Partridge Formation of New Hampshire) - Gray, rusty-weathering, medium- to coarse-grained, poorly layered schist, composed of quartz, oligoclase, muscovite, biotite, and garnet, and commonly staurolite, kyanite, or sillimanite, generally graphitic, interlayered with fine-grained two-mica gneiss, especially to the west, and with calc-silicate and amphibolite layers, also rare quartz-spessartine (coticule) layers.

Comments: Part of Eastern Uplands; Iapetus (Oceanic) Terrane - Bronson Hill Anticlinorium; Brimfield Schist and equivalent formations (includes Collins Hill Formation) (Upper? and Middle Ordovician). Original map source: Connecticut Geological and Natural History Survey, DEP, in cooperation with the U.S. Geological Survey, 2000, Bedrock Geology of Connecticut, shapefile, scale 1:50,000

Lithology: Major:{schist}, Minor:{gneiss}, Incidental:{amphibolite, calc silicate rock}

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)
Cook, John E. (1850 circa), Notes by him in the account book of his father Nathaniel Cook. Haddam Historical Society, Thankful Arnold House, Haddam, Connecticut.
Hunt, T. S. (1852), Examination of some American Minerals. American Journal Of Science: s. 2: 14: 340-1.
Shepard, Charles Upham, Sr. (1870), A new variety (species?) of Columbite. American Journal of Science: s. 2:, 50: 90.
Delafontaine, Prof. (1877), On the Hermannolite of Shepard, and on the Samarskite of North Carolina. American Journal of Science: s. 3, 13(77): 390.
Williams, Horace S. (1899), Letter to Miss Eveline Brainerd of Haddam, February 18, 1899. Brainerd Public Library, Haddam, Connecticut.
Davis, James W. (1901), The Minerals of Haddam, Conn. Mineral Collector: 8(4): 50-54.
Davis, James W. (1901), The Minerals of Haddam, Conn. Mineral Collector: 8(5): 65-70.
Williams, Horace S. (circa 1945), Article for New York Society of Mineralogists. Brainerd Public Library, Haddam, Connecticut.

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