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Castle Dome District, Castle Dome Mts, Yuma Co., Arizona, USA

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Latitude & Longitude (WGS84): 32° 55' 50'' North , 114° 9' 56'' West
Latitude & Longitude (decimal): 32.93056,-114.16556
Other regions containing this locality:Sonoran Desert, North America
Köppen climate type:BWh : Hot deserts climate

The History of Arizona, 2nd. legislature, Arizona, Chapter XV - Formation of Mining Districts: 299-302 (original page numbers, as posted online by the University of Arizona, Southwest Library). Grammar and spelling not corrected:

At a meeting held at La Paz on the 8th. day of December 1862 by persons claiming interests in mineral veins near the Castle Dome range of mts Col Snively was requested to act as chairman and H. Ehrenberg as Secretary of the meeting and the following resolutions were adopted.

That the District wherein said veins are situated be called the Castle Dome District and be bounded as follows: Beginning at the peak known as Castle Dom-Thence 10 miles South-Thence East 10 miles-Thence north 10 miles-Thence West 10 miles to the starting point.

2 That a mining claim in this District shall be 100 yards along said vein including all the angle spurrs &c belonging thereto-

3 That the Discoverer or Discoverers of a vein shall be entitled to 100 yds extra on each & ever vein discovered by him or them.

4. That in taking possession of claims the shall be clearly defined by conspicuous stakes or monmts of rock with the names of persons claiming.

5. That 100 yards on each side of the vein where not conflicting with prior rights shall be considered part of the claim, and shall belong to the same, with any and every substance or thing found within these bounds on or below the surface.

6. That all claims shall be recorded within 10 days after claiming them-

7. That all claims thus recorded shall be properly described in their boundaries, and their relative position, as bearing and distances (where practicable) to any natural or artificial object stated.

8. That in consideration of the want of mining implements and materials in this section at present, the time for commencing operations on the claims is fixed to 15 March 1863.

9. That on and after that date all claims located shall be worked within 30 days.

10. That all claims shall be worked in good faith for at least 4 days in each month.

11. That companies holding various claims on the same vein shall not be obliged to work all of them severaly, but that the working of any one of their claims in accordance with article 10 shall be sufficient evidence of good faith and ownership of the parties claiming.

No claims shall be considered abandoned or forfeited for suspension of work for want of water or on account of war with Indians or any other unavoidable circumstances or obstacle.

13. A Recorder shall be elected for the District who shall record the different claims, as presented in a book kept for that purpose and he shall give certified copies thereof-

14. The fee of recording shall be One Dollar for each claim, and no records of claims shall be made unless a specimen of the ore, coming from said claim shall accompany the statement to be recorded, which specimen shall be properly marked and preserved by the Recorder to serve as evidence in case of dispute hereafter.

15. The Recorder to be elected hereafter shall for the present keep his office in the town of La Paz Arizona-

16. Herman Ehrenberg is hereby chosen Recorder for Castle Dom District.

17. Any five miners holding claims in this District shall have a right to call a general meeting of the miners interested in claims there, for the purpose of revising the mining laws, the election of Recorder or for any purpose referring to the general interest of the District.

18. Any such meeting as mentioned in article 17 shall only be considered legal by having 2 notices thereof posted within the bounds of said district, and one at the Recorders office for at least 14 days previously.

J. Snively, Chairman.

H. Ehrenberg, Secretary.

....and thus was born a formal Arizona mining district! Watch for the Indians!!

This district was discovered in 1863 by Geologist Professor Blake. Mining activities didn't start until 1869 due to the Indians. Activities were stopped for a while and resumed in 1890, being reopened by Messrs. Gondolfo & Sanguinetti of Yuma.

The district is a Pb-Ag-F-Ba-Mn-Zn-Cu-Au-V-Mo (Be-Sb-Se-As-U) mining district located about 20 miles North of Yuma in the Castle Dome and Middle Mountains, with its center about 2½ to 5½ miles SW of Castle Dome Peak. (T.4S.-, R.17W.-; T.6S., R.20W.).

The productive veins of this district occur near the outward margin of the pediment, and the outcrops of the widest ones are confined mainly to the suballuvial bench of this pediment. The veins occupy steeply-dipping fault zones that cut both the shale and the diorite porphyry dikes. Although well represented within both of these rocks, the oreshoots are generally best where diorite porphyry forms one or both of the vein walls. In general, the principal veins strike from NNW to NW and dip steeply.

Mineralization is varied: (1) Tabular, lensing, and irregular masses of argentiferous galena, superficially altered to anglesite, cerussite, and lead oxides, in often banded gangue of crystalline fluorite, calcite, barite, and minor quartz, in numerous NW- to N-striking, steeply-dipping, lensing veins along fault zones, fractures and dike contacts, in metamorphosed Mesozoic shale, impure limestone, and sandy beds, intruded by a dense swarm of diorite dikes and slightly later quartz porphyry intrusive dikes and irregular masses. Locally, some hydrozincite, smithsonite, wulfenite, vanadinite, and mimetite in vugs and solution channels. Wall rocks are altered to quartz, calcite, and sericite with some chloritization of shale with disseminated pyrite; (2) Gold and silver values, in irregular quartz veins, with local crystalline calcite, manganiferous calcite, and manganese oxides, in strongly brecciated shear zones in Cretaceous andesite and rhyolite flows and tuff, near contact with Laramide granitic intrusive or in the intrusive; (3) Spotty chalcocite, copper carbonates, and minor lead and zinc mineralization along fracture zones in Mesozoic shale, limestone and arkose; (4) Discontinuous, lenticular bodies of manganese oxides in shear veins in Cretaceous or Tertiary andesitic volcanics; and, (5) Gold placers in dry washes below Big Eye and associated vein deposits.

This is one of the oldest and most productive mining districts in Yuma CountyProduction is estimated at 10,697 tons of lead plus 498,000 ounces of silver, 2,000 oz. of gold, 38 tons of zinc, and 36 tons of copper. Additionally, some 3,300 tons of lump and gravel fluorspar and about 400 long tons of manganese oxides have been reported as shipped (to 1974). Placer gold production, mostly prior to 1900, is estimated as more than 7,000 oz.

Commodity List

This is a list of exploitable or exploited mineral commodities recorded from this region.

Mineral List

Mineral list contains entries from the region specified including sub-localities

34 valid minerals.

Rock Types Recorded

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Rock list contains entries from the region specified including sub-localities

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Alphabetical List Tree Diagram

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

Holocene - Gelasian
0 - 2.588 Ma

ID: 2981823
Quaternary surficial deposits, undivided

Age: Pleistocene (0 - 2.588 Ma)

Description: Unconsolidated to strongly consolidated alluvial and eolian deposits. This unit includes: coarse, poorly sorted alluvial fan and terrace deposits on middle and upper piedmonts and along large drainages; sand, silt and clay on alluvial plains and playas; and wind-blown sand deposits. (0-2 Ma)

Lithology: Major:{sand,silt,clay}

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

Localities in this Region

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.


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Blake, W.P. (1880).
Blake, William P. (1881a), Vanadinite in Arizona, American Journal of Science: 22: 235.
Blake, William P. (1881b), On the occurrence of vanadates of lead at the Castle Dome mines in Arizona, American Journal of Science: 22: 410-411.
The Resources of Arizona - A Manual of Reliable Information Concerning the Territory, compiled by Patrick Hamilton (1881), Scottsdale, AZ: 72.
Guild, F.N. (1910), The mineralogy of Arizona, The Chemical Publishing Co., Easton, PA.
Nevius, J.N. (1912) The Castle Dome lead district, Arizona: Mining and Scientific Press: 104: 854-855.
Foshag, W.F. (1919), Famous mineral localities: Yuma County, Arizona, American Mineralogist: 4: 149-150.
Allen, M.A. & G.M. Butler (1921b), Fluorspar, Arizona Bureau of Mines Bull. 114.
Ladoo, R.B. (1923), Fluorspar mining in the western states, US Bureau of Mines Report of Investigation 2480.
Thompson, A.P. (1925), The Castle Dome lead district of Yuma County, Arizona. Mining Journal: 9(4): 5-6, 48-49.
Thompson (1925), Arizona Mining Journal, Nov 1925: 9(12): 7.
Wilson, E.D. (1933) Geology and Mineral Deposits of Southern Yuma County, Arizona. Arizona Bureau of Mines Bulletin 134: 82-83, 85-87.
Burchard, E.F. (1934) Fluorspar deposits in western United States (with discussion), in Metal mining and nonmetallic minerals, 1934: American Institute of Mining and Metallurgical Engineers, Transactions: 109: 370-396.
Holt, E.B. (1942) New production from Castle Dome district: Mining Journal: 26(7): 4-5.
Batty, J.V., et al (1947), Concentration of fluorite ores from Arizona, California, Idaho, Montana, Nevada and Wyoming, US Bureau of Mines Report of Investigation 4133.
Wilson, E.D., et al (1951), Castle Dome district, Chap. X, in Arizona zinc and lead deposits, part II, Arizona Bureau of Mines Bul l. 158: 98-106.
Galbraith, F.W. & D.J. Brennan (1959), Minerals of Arizona: 28, 44, 49, 53, 58, 73.
Stewart, L.A. & A.J. Pfister (1960), Barite deposits of Arizona, US Bureau of Mines Report of Investigation 5651.
USGS & Arizona Bureau of Mines, and U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (1969), Mineral and Water Resources of Arizona, Arizona Bureau of Mines Bull. 180 (USGS Bull.871): 200, 354.
Keith, Stanton B. (1978) State of Arizona Bureau of Geology and Mineral Technology, Geol. Sur. Br. Bull. 192, Index of Mining Properties in Yuma Co., Arizona: 116-117 (Table 4).
Gutmann, J.T. (1981) Geological framework and hot dry rock geothermal potential of the Castle Dome area, Yuma County, Arizona: Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory Report LA-8723-HDR, 23 p.
Mineralogical Record: 19: 331.
Anthony, J.W., et al (1995), Mineralogy of Arizona, 3rd. ed.: 112-113, 118, 201, 224, 242, 344.
Arizona Bureau of Mines file data.

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