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Blue Nose Mine (Abe Lincoln Mine; War Horse Mine; Big Chief Mine; Big Jim Mine; Blue Nose Extension Mine; Home Again Virginia Hay claims), Harshaw, Harshaw District, Patagonia Mts, Santa Cruz Co., Arizona, USA

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Latitude & Longitude (WGS84): 31° 26' 53'' North , 110° 43' 55'' West
Latitude & Longitude (decimal): 31.44806,-110.73222
Other regions containing this locality:Sonoran Desert, North America

A former small surface and underground Ag-Pb-Zn-Cu-Au-Mn (Bi) occurrence/mine located on 4 patented claims in north-central (NW¼SE¼) sec. 8, T23S, R16E (protracted), 2 miles SW of Harshaw, on private property. Located on the west side of Harshaw Creek, 0.75 mile WNW of American Peak. Discovered in 1880 by George McKay. Produced 1884-1956. Owned/operated by Ms Virginia Hay (?-1974). Owned at times, or in part, by R.R. Richardson and Neil McDonald (circa 1915); Powers; the Arizona Patagonia Silver Mining Co.; Hogan; Big Jim Mines, Inc.; Mr. Rupert Beyerle; and, R.L. Brown; the Calumet and Arizona Co.; Mr. Tom Farrell; Mr. Alfredo Valenzuela; Mr. M.F. Jones (owner-1944); Mr. M.A. Hoover and Captain Coy; Mr. H.C. Herrick; and, Louis Verdugo. This mine was worked intermittently from the early 1880's to 1956.

Mineralization is pockety, argentiferous galena and other sulfides, partly oxidized, along sheeted fractures close to a major NW-trending fault/fissure zone in Jurassic-Triassic volcanics with interbedded limy, siliceous sediments. The ore zone is 1188.7 meters long, 1.22 meters wide, with a depth to bottom of 60.96 meters, dipping 40NW. Manganese oxides and carbonate are present in the gangue. Ore concentration was secondary enrichment along the fissure.

The vein or lode dips 40ºNW., about conformable with the enclosing rocks. It is about 4 feet in width. The footwall, a sheet of the dense dark rhyolite, is pyritic, being impregnated with small crystals and grains of pyrite and chalcopyrite. The ore occurs in pockets, mostly in a white talc-like substance. The volcanic sedimentary rocks are commonly highly altered to epidote, tourmaline, quartz, sericite, kaolinite, alunite and pyrophyllite. Most ore occurs in a dipper-shaped body.

Country rock is the Paleozoic limestone and quartzite series (Bisbee Formation) and is intruded by dark-greenish, slate-colored, dense, glassy rhyolite, seemingly in the form of intrusive sheets. The Bisbee Formation is commonly hornfelsed and porphyritic. The rocks dip about 40NW, and are sliced by a prominent sheeting that dips 80SE.

Local structures include the NW-trending Blue Nose Fault. Rhyolite forms intrusive sheets in limestone.

Tectonic elements include the UX Ranch Fault Block, bounded on the east by the Harshaw Creek Fault and on the west by the Blue Nose Fault; apparent left-lateral slip in relation to the Harshaw Creek Fault and American Mine Fault Block is 4 to 5 miles.

Workings include shafts and tunnel operations totaling 441.96 meters long and 60.96 meters deep. Developments included a vertical shaft over 200 feet deep, 1 adit 80 feet long (showing narrow stringers of manganese), a 100 foot long adit, 2 mine dumps and extensive underground workings, plus 3000 feet of surface workings. It is developed to more than 200 feet.

It produced some 13,000 tons of ore averaging about 18 oz. Ag/T, 2% Pb, 1% Zn, 0.5% Cu and minor Au.

Mineral List

16 valid minerals.

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

Campanian - Oxfordian
72.1 - 163.5 Ma
Cretaceous to Late Jurassic sedimentary rocks with minor volcanic rocks

Age: Mesozoic (72.1 - 163.5 Ma)

Stratigraphic Name: Temporal Formation; Bathtub Formation; Sand Wells Formation; Fort Crittenden Formation; McCoy Mountains Formation

Description: Sandstone and conglomerate, rarely forms prominent outcrops; massive conglomerate is typical near base of unit and locally in upper part. These deposits are nonmarine except in southeastern Arizona, where prominent gray marine limestone (Mural Limestone) forms the middle of the Bisbee Group. Sandstones are typically medium-bedded, drab brown, lithic-feldspathic arenites. Includes Bisbee Group (largely Early Cretaceous) and related rocks, Temporal, Bathtub, and Sand Wells formations, rocks of Gu Achi, McCoy Mountains Formation, and Upper Cretaceous Fort Crittenden Formation and equivalent rocks. (80-160 Ma)

Lithology: Major:{arenite,conglomerate}, Minor:{limestone}

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, used under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License

This page contains all mineral locality references listed on This does not claim to be a complete list. If you know of more minerals from this site, please register so you can add to our database. This locality information is for reference purposes only. You should never attempt to visit any sites listed in without first ensuring that you have the permission of the land and/or mineral rights holders for access and that you are aware of all safety precautions necessary.


Schrader, F.C. & J.M. Hill (1915), Mineral deposits of the Santa Rita and Patagonia Mountains, Arizona, USGS Bulletin 582: 278-279.

Tenney, J.B. (1927-1929) History of Mining in Arizona, Special Collection, University of Arizona Library & Arizona Bureau of Mines Library: 312.

Kartchner, W.E. (1944) The geology and ore deposits of a portion of the Harshaw district, Patagonia Mountains, Arizona: Tucson, University of Arizona, Ph.D. dissertation, 100 p.

Moores, R.C., III (1972) The geology and ore deposits of a portion of the Harshaw district, Santa Cruz County, Arizona: Tucson, University of Arizona, M.S. thesis, 98 p.

Simons, F.S. (1972) Mesozoic stratigraphy of the Patagonia Mountains and adjoining areas, Santa Cruz County, Arizona, in Mesozoic stratigraphy in southeastern Arizona: USGS Professional Paper 658-E: E3.

Simons, F.S. (1974) Geologic map and sections of the Nogales and Lochiel quadrangles, Santa Cruz County, Arizona: USGS Miscellaneous Investigations Series Map I-762, 9 p., 1 sheet, scale 1:48,000.

Keith, Stanton B. (1975), Arizona Bureau of Mines Bulletin 191, Index of Mining Properties in Santa Cruz County Arizona: 57 (Table 4).

U.S. Bureau of Mines - Arizona Bureau of Geology and Mineral Technology file data.

Arizona Department of Mineral Resources file data, Big Jim Mine.

Arizona Bureau of Mines file data.

U.S. Bureau of Mines Coronado National Forest Study.

MRDS database Dep. ID file #10048353, MRDS ID #M899940; and, Dep. ID #10161923, MAS ID #0040230420.

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