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Fairbanks Mine, Ruona group, Darwin, Darwin District, Darwin Hills, Inyo Co., California, USA

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A former small Pb-Zn mine in SW¼ sec 1, T19S, R40E, MDM, 3.0 miles N8°W of Darwin and 1460 feet N 60°W of the Lucky Jim Mine, at an elevation of 5610 feet. The property consisted of 8 claims. Owned by Alex Ruona (1938) and later by Mrs. Marie Wilson-Ruona (1958). MRDS database stated accuracy for this location is 10 meters. Description and position updated (N36.31107 W117.59900) by Richard Muster based on observations in 2007.

Mineralization is a vein deposit hosted in thinly bedded bluish-gray limestone and calc-hornfels (tactite). The ore is galena with lead carbonate. The fissure strikes NW and is 2 to 4 feet wide. The mine has both Pb-Ag and W minerals, but was worked for Pb and Zn only. Local rocks include Carboniferous marine rocks, unit 2 (SE California Carbonate Assemblage).

Workings include surface and underground openings comprised of a shaft about 150 feet deep, several shallow shafts and open cuts.

NOTE: The USGS MRDS database provides 2 files for the Fairbanks mine. The coordinates presented in MRDS file #10033975 are N 36.29997 W 117.60951. There one can see some traces of mining activities, but it is not the Fairbanks mine proper. All references state that the Fairbanks mine is NW of the Lucky Jim mine and not SW. Sites visited by Richard Muster.

Mineral List

9 entries listed. 7 valid minerals.

The above list 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.


Kelley, Vincent Cooper (1938), Geology and ore deposits of the Darwin silver-lead mining district, Inyo County, California: California Journal of Mines and Geology, California Division Mines (Report 34): 34(4): 555.

Tucker, W. Burling & Reid J. Sampson (1938), Mineral resources of Inyo County, California: California Journal of Mines and Geology (Report 34): 34(4): 440.

Goodwin, Joseph Grant (1957) Lead and zinc in California. California Journal of Mines and Geology, Division of Mines (Report 53): 53(3&4): 471-472.

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.: 30-31, 40.

Pemberton, H. Earl (1983), Minerals of California; Van Nostrand Reinholt Press: 102 (map 3-6).

USGS (2005), Mineral Resources Data System (MRDS): U.S. Geological Survey, Reston, Virginia, loc. file ID #10211795 & 10033975.

Mineral Availability System (MAS) database file # 0060271912.

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