Mines of El Dorado County: “A”

The Adams Gulch mine (also Stony Point or Sullivan mine) was located on a portion of the Mother Lode, two miles northeast of the early town of Nashville (on Highway 49) and just a few miles from the present Amador County line. Its four foot vein of gold bearing quartz was actively mined from 1902 until 1911 and again in 1914 and developed by 180 and 200 foot crosscut adits.

The Adam Colwell claim consisted of 40 acres about three miles east of Diamond Springs.

A few miles north of the Adams Gulch mine and about two miles southwest of the townsite of El Dorado (Mud Springs) was the Adjuster, or Hustler mine. It contained a five foot vein that was worked prior to 1914 by a 250 foot crosscut adit and about 100 feet of drifts. At one time there was a ten stamp mill on the property.

The Admiral Schley quartz mine was located on the west branch of the Mother Lode, about a mile north of Greenwood and consisted of 20.11 acres.

A copper mine named the Agara mine was located three miles northeast of the town of Fair Play, just north of the Cosumnes Copper mine. Little is known about it other than it was developed by a 25 foot shaft.

The Agren Placer mine was located about one and one-half miles southwest of Camino. It was 84.12 acres in size.

The Alabaster Cave mine was another copper mine that was located one mile east of Rattlesnake Bridge and taken by the government for the development of Folsom Lake. It was active prior to 1902, when miners followed an eight foot vein that contained 3 to 4 percent copper along with some gold and silver. Later it was also mined for limestone which was cooked for use in mortar. It was a large operation, developed by one 300 and two 50 foot shafts and a 100 and a 30 foot adit.
The cave itself was filled with interesting limestone formations and in 1862 was chronicled in “Scenes of Wonder and Curiosity in California -Alabaster Cave,” by James M. Hutchings. The cave must have been mined, since one of the etchings shows limestone being cooked.

One of only a few manganese mines in El Dorado County, the Alderson mine, was located about one and one-half miles southeast of Placerville. Assays on the 150 foot long deposit ran as high as twenty-five percent manganese. Little is known about its operation.

A famous lode gold mine, the Alhambra mine is located one mile east of Spanish Flat and two miles northeast of Kelsey. It was originally worked in 1883 when a 29 foot shaft yielded $27,600 in gold (remember, at around $16 to the ounce).
It became active again in 1886 and by 1890 there was a five-stamp mill on the property noisily hammering the mined quartz to release the gold.
In 1934 it was re-opened by Messrs. Jensen and Schneider who discovered two very high-grade pockets at a depth of about 90 feet, each yielding about $10,000 in gold. Soon thereafter, the Alhambra-Shumway Mining Company was formed and the mine was significantly deepened.
In 1939, a huge pocket of high-grade ore was found between the 225 and 275 foot levels that yielded over a half a million dollars in gold. Word of this discovery quickly spread, resulting is numerous newspaper and magazine articles, world-wide.
Through the 1940s, the mine produced over $1,250,000 of gold overall, at least 50 percent of which came from pockets of high-grade ore. It is developed by a 440 foot shaft and over 3000 feet of drifts and crosscuts.

The Allen Dredge was a short-lived (1945-47) suction dredge operation on the Bacchi Ranch near Lotus.

Another large lode gold mine, the Alpine mine, was located two miles southeast of Georgetown. Originally worked in the 1860s, by 1888 the quartz was being crushed by a ten-stamp mill. It was active around 1902 and 1912 and continuously from 1933 until 1938, when the Beebe Gold Mining Company, which also ran the nearby Beebe Mine, took over operations.
In the six years the Beebe Company operated the mine, some 64,349 tons of ore was removed and trucked to the Beebe Mine where it was processed, producing $434,665 worth of gold. The mine was developed by a 400 foot shaft with working levels at 100, 200, 300, 350 and 400 feet.

The Alveoro mine was a placer gold mine in an ancient river bed one-half mile north of Smith Flat. The deposit, which is 100 to 300 feet wide and 6 to 30 feet deep, was developed by a 4000 foot adit and 400 and 500 foot inclined shafts.

The Amelia mine was another placer gold mine some two miles east of Volcanoville, which is several miles east of Georgetown. In 1908 this mine, along with others, was operated by the Two Channel Mining Company.

A gravel mine known as the Anderson Pit was located adjacent to Highway 50 one mile north of Meyers in the Lake Tahoe basin. This pit was a major source for sand from decomposed granite that was used for road surfacing and in concrete.
The Apex mine was a chromite mine one mile southwest of Volcanoville. It was mined by the open pit method in 1918 when eight tons of ore was removed.

The Andrew Kinnenmouth claim consisted of 160 acres on the Mother Lode, just southwest of Garden Valley.1

Located at Henry Diggings, three miles south of Grizzly Flat, was the Armstrong and Roberts mine. It was a placer deposit 60 feet wide and 5 feet deep which was developed by a 600 foot adit.

The Argonaut (also Aultman and Golden Unit Mine) was a gold mine on the Mother Lode one and one-half miles southeast of Greenwood. Active in the 1880s, 1921 and 1927-28, it was a northwest striking vein up to 15 feet wide developed by a drift adit. The ore yielded up to $15 a ton.

A similarly named mine, the Argonaut Fraction mine, was a lode gold mine located one-quarter mile northeast of the Argonaut mine, by Georgetown Creek. Consisting of two parallel veins of ore, it was developed by a 100 foot adit (east vein) and 60 foot adit (west vein). It has been intermittently operated since 1933 with most of the ore stockpiled (as of 1956).

The Arizona Claim was a copper mine two miles southeast of Georgetown, containing outcrops as wide as 100 feet.

The Asbestos placer mine was an isolated parcel of 14.22 acres about one mile northeast of Spanish Flat.

Near Pleasant Valley, the Avansino mine was a placer mine that was active around 1893 and prospected in the early 1930s. Channel and bench gravels were developed by a 107 foot shaft with a 57 foot north drift on the 90 foot level and a 307 foot south drift on the 107 foot level.

IndexNext Article

  1 comment for “Mines of El Dorado County: “A”

  1. March 24, 2014 at 6:47 am

    Do you mind if I quote a few of your posts as long as I provide
    credit and sources back to your site? My blog is in the very same area
    of interest as yours and my users would truly benefit from a lot of the information you
    present here. Please let me know if this ok with you.

    Thank you!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *