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Mulgabbie Goldfield, Kalgoorlie-Boulder Shire, Western Australia, Australia

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Latitude & Longitude (WGS84): 30° 10' 49'' South , 122° 27' 28'' East
Latitude & Longitude (decimal): -30.1803649492, 122.457763655


About 130 kilometres north-east of Kalgoorlie, along the Kurnalpi-Pinjin Road. Historic mining was alluvial and minor reefing near Mulgabbie Hill. Five modern pits and the Saracen's Carosue processing plant are to the west.

Mulgabbie Hill is conical shaped, surrounded by alluvial flats bordered by two prominent ridges which directs water when it rarely rains south and east towards salt pans. Historic sources state alluvial gold was found in the western section of the flats, and a nearby valley called Bung-Eye Gully. Several sources describe the ground as being as hard as cement.

Jim Kennedy had the contract to supply timber for mining at Edjudina, and in his spare time did a little prospecting. In 1893 he came across some loose gold a little south from here, sank a shaft but abandoned the enterprise after nothing more was found. In 1897, prospectors Reid, Johnson, and Mackay discovered a rich alluvial patch at Mulgabbie, and a goldrush ensued. Soon 500 men were working the flats. For some it amounted to a rich bonanza but by 1900 it was reported the field had been worked out, with only a few men remaining.

In 1903, Robb and party discovered telluride ore at the Mulgabbie Perseverance. Thirty five leases were taken out. Perseverence took out one and a half tonne of telluride ore, but it did not prove extensive. By 1905, several of the workings had closed and the field was left to a few hardy prospectors. Every few years a report would come through of a lone prospector making a find, till the last report found in 1947.

A 1904 report describes the mines left at that stage. All had sunk shafts seeking quartz veins with gold,and appeared to form roughly a south-north line. The most southerly was Mulgabbie Lucknow, then Clancy's Reward Claim, the Eldorado lease, Thompson's Quartz Claim, Mulgabbie Preseverence, Johnson's Quartz Claim, the Joe Chamberlain, and finally Ironclad being the northern most. Within a year only a couple of these were still working.

State engineer, C.F.V. Jackson reported in 1905, some alluvial fine gold found may have been due to the decomposition of telluride ores in the weathered portion of the lode. It trended north-west to south-east. He describes the host rock as silicified country, sometimes entirely converted to a dark massive quartz, and sometimes schistose impregnated with much pyrite, pyrrhotite and chalcopyrite. Another report states the area is schists and weathered greenstone sometimes with porphyry intrusives, all concealed by a laterite cap. Gold leaders appear below the western side of the flat, and deeper exploration on the eastern veins where some shafts have been sunk. There are several parrallel leaders of quartz veins in crushed rock with pyrite at the lower levels. Compact chlorite schist forms an indicator with a little sulphide in places, and has influenced the placement of gold in the veins. At greater depth the leader crossed a zone of foliated rock, and in an accute angle formed a small bunch of telluride ore.

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References

The Kalgoorlie Western Argus newspaper (1907): The Mulgabbie Specimens (10 Dec 1907)

The Kalgoorlie Miner newspaper (1905): The Mulgabbie Perseverence
(28 Dec 1905)

The Kalgoorlie Miner newspaper (1947): Mulgabbie Telluride Sensational in 1903 (04 Jul 1947)

The Kalgoolie Western Argus newspaper (1905): Mulgabbie Mining
(14 Feb 1905)

The Kalgoorlie Miner newspaper (1904): Mulgabbie Mining (31 Aug 1904)

Journal of the Royal Society of Western Australia (1999):82: 165-168

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