Mines of El Dorado County

Mines of El Dorado County: “C” (Part 1)

The Calaveras mine was a lode gold mine four miles east of Latrobe. The quartz vein, containing both free gold and sulfides, was developed by 32 and 53-foot shafts and open cuts in 1896.

Two miles west of Kelsey was the Caledonia mine. Around 1900 a five foot quartz vein was mined for gold by way of a vertical shaft.

The California-Bangor Slate Company mine was located one mile northwest of Kelsey. It was active prior to 1915.

The California Location of the Perkins Consolidated mine was a lode gold mine located on the banks of the Middle Fork of the American River about six miles north of Georgetown.

The California Lode gold mine was located about one mile north of Diamond Springs on Weber Creek.

The California and Virginia Placer mine was on the Middle Fork of the American River one and one-half miles north of Volcanoville.

The California Consolidated (Ibid, Tapioca) mine was one mile southwest of Grizzly Flat. This lode gold mine was active in 1896 and reopened in 1938. The mine was developed by two crosscut adits, one 468 feet in length, the other 70 feet. The ore from the Tapioca claim, which was treated at the nearby Morey mill, yielded $11.30 per ton.

Another California Consolidated mine was located north of Nashville, about 2 miles from the Amador County line.

Three miles southwest of Georgetown was the California Jack mine. Prior to 1896 a 12-foot wide quartz vein was mined for gold by way of a 350-foot crosscut adit, a 200-foot north drift and a 90-foot shaft. The ore was treated on-site at a ten-stamp mill.

The California Slate Quarry was located three miles north of Placerville on the north side of the South Fork of the American River. It was active around 1889, but the slate turned out to be poor quality because of the presence of iron pyrite.

Three miles west of Coloma was the Cambrian mine, where three veins of copper bearing ore were mined in the 1850s, 1900 and 1908. The ore contained 10 percent copper, along with native copper and gold, and was developed by 113, 220 and 1360-foot adits, winzes and drifts.

The Camelback (Voss) mine was a copper mine located three miles southwest of Pilot Hill on Burner Hill. The ore was located in two massive, parallel quartz veins a half mile apart. One was developed by a 24-foot shaft, a 123-foot drift adit, and a 165-foot crosscut adit. The other, to the east of the first one, was developed by two shafts, one 200-foot deep, the other 40-foot deep.

The Campini mine was a lode gold mine located about two and a half miles north of Shingle Springs.

The Carlo Bacigalupo claim was a lode gold mine about two miles west of Newtown.

The Carpenter Ranch Placer mine was about five mines north of Georgetown and one mile south of the Middle Fork of the American River.

There was also another Carpenter mine, the Carpenter Blue Channel mine, near Smith’s Flat. The July 17, 1929 issue of the “Placerville Republican” reported that Ray Ruff, 21, had been killed by a falling rock at that mine.

The Carrie Hale mine was a placer mine at Henry’s Diggings, three miles south of Grizzly Flat. Active around 1894, an ancient river channel 60 feet wide and up to 5 feet thick was developed by a 400-foot bedrock adit. The “Pay Streak” was in blue gravel on granite bedrock and was mined in 12-foot “breasts” or increments.
On the east slope of Greenwood Hill was the Carrol mine, where gold in small seams of rock was removed by hydraulic methods.

The Case mine was a placer mine located on a branch of Otter Creek, about three miles north of Georgetown.

The Cash Boy mine was a lode gold mine located about one mile north of Shingle Springs.

On the Middle Fork of the American River, about one mile northwest of Volcanoville was the Cash Rock placer mine.

Another small seam gold mine was the Castile mine, one mile east of Garden Valley. Here two quartz veins in a seam zone 18 feet wide was hydraulicked in “the early days.”

The C. D. Lane claim consisted of 80 acres just east of the town of Fair Play.

The Cederberg (Drury) mine was a seam gold mine on the east side of American Canyon, two miles northeast of Greenwood. First mined in 1878 and then active in the 1890s and early 1920s, it consisted of small veins and veinlets in slate that yielded much specimen gold. Hydraulicked at first, it was later mined through a 318-foot shaft with levels at 100, 200 and 300 feet. There was also a Cederberg First Southerly Extension Mine adjacent to it.

The Cedar Creek mine was a placer mine on Cedar Creek, about two miles west of Omo Ranch in the southern part of the county.

Little is known about the Cedar Ravine mine, a placer gold mine that was located in Cedar Ravine, one mile south of Placerville. Well-cemented gravel was mined and treated at a 10-stamp mill.

The Cedar Spring mine was a drift placer mine also in Cedar Ravine, about one mile south of Placerville on the Green Mountain (gravel) channel. A 300 to 600 foot wide channel, with pay gravel 4 to 6-feet thick was mined from the 1870s into the early 1900s. The mine was developed by a 900-foot adit and 75-foot incline. There was also a second, lower adit of unknown dimensions.

The Cement Hill and Jordan placer mine was a drift placer mine on Cement Hill (named for the cemented gravels in the ancient river channel), three miles north of Georgetown. During the years 1894 – 96, it was prospected by digging 750 and 600-foot adits.

The Central El Dorado mine was a lode gold mine about one and a half miles northwest of the town of El Dorado.

The Central Pacific Railroad mine was a chromite mine located two miles southwest of Greenwood. During WWI, some 250 tons of ore were mined from a lens of 35 – 41 percent ore. Mining was by the open pit method.

The Central Railroad was also a chromite mine located near Flagstaff Hill, which is now part of the Folsom Reservoir property. It was a relatively small mine with a 200-foot shaft and some adits into a low grade ore body.

Just to the northwest of Placerville was the Chadbourne Consolidated mine. Little is known about it other than it consisted of 13.64 acres.

The Chaix mine was a chromite mine two miles southeast of Latrobe, worked first during WWI and then again during WWII. In 1953 several tons of ore were removed and trucked to the El Dorado Chrome Company’s custom mill at the Church Mine (south of El Dorado). From there, the concentrates were trucked to the Government stockpile at Grants Pass, Oregon. The ore, which averaged about 20 percent chromite, was mined by bulldozers from an open pit, 300 feet long by 200 feet wide by 30 feet deep.

The nearby Chaix Iron mine was located one and one-half miles south of Latrobe. A lens of magnetite and hematite as much as 25-feet wide that outcropped for some 60 feet was mined.

The Champion mine was located about one mile to the east of Diamond Springs, in a very heavily mined area.

The Chancellor mine was another of the lode gold mines near Indian Diggings, south of Omo Ranch.

Two miles northeast of Volcanoville there is a bend in the ancient channel of the American River. Here, the Barnes, Bend, Gray Eagle Bar and McCall claims were consolidated into the Channel Bend mine. During the 1890s the placer gold in this river bend was removed through a 136-foot shaft and 200 and 300-foot drifts.

The Chancellor mine was a lode gold mine about one and one-half miles north of Indian Diggings.

The Chaparral (Golden Queen) mine was on the Mother Lode, two miles southwest of Kelsey. A 6-foot wide quartz vein containing gold, yielding $7 to $15 per ton, was mined in both 1872-75 and 1901. The mine was developed by a 200- foot shaft and a 50-foot adit.

The Cherokee Flat mine was a lode gold mine about 3 miles north of Georgetown, near the mining town of Bottle Hill.

The Chester, a lode gold mine, was within the City of Placerville.

The Chili Bar Placer mine, which consisted of a claim of 30 acres on the South Fork of the American River, was very near the following, more familiar mine.

The Chili Bar Slate Quarry is on the south side of the South Fork of the American River, just east of the Chili Bar Bridge, three and one-half miles north of Placerville. It was first worked from 1887 – 1897 when roofing shingles and other forms of dimension slate were produced by the open-pit method. The quarry was idle until 1928 when it became an underground operation, producing roofing granules and slate-dust filler, among other products. It is still in operation, the material is crushed and sized on the property and trucked to users. Prior to the abandonment of the railroad, it was taken to Sacramento by train.

The Chili Ravine mine was a drift mine in Chili Ravine, two miles south of Placerville. During the years 1870-90 and 1912-15, the well cemented gravel, 3 to 12 feet thick, was mined for gold by the use of a 1200-foot crosscut adit and a 700-foot drift adit.

The China Hill mine was located three miles southwest of El Dorado. The five foot vein, consisting of small, rich shoots of quartz containing native gold, was mined prior to 1894. It was developed by a 200-foot crosscut adit, 200 feet of drifts and open cuts.

The Chouler mine was a lode gold mine located about two miles east of Pleasant Valley, south of Camp Creek.

At Henry Diggings, three miles south of Grizzly Flat, was the Christian mine. A drift mine in gold bearing gravels, it was worked intermittently in the 1940s and ‘50s.

The aptly named Chrome Divide mine was a chromite mine located on the Georgetown Divide, three miles east of Georgetown. During WWII, 51 tons of chromite was produced from a string of pods and lenses.

The Church mine was one of the better-known Mother Lode gold mines in El Dorado County. Located two miles southeast of the town of El Dorado, near Deadman Creek, it was first worked on a small scale about 1850. During the 1860s it was consolidated with the Union mine, to the south, yet later was worked separately. By 1868 the two mines had produced more than $600,000. Large amounts of mining went on during the 1880s and 90s and by 1896, the main shaft was 1200 feet deep. By 1900 the mining had reached the 1350 foot level. In 1907, the mine was shut down and then, in 1941, reopened with the shaft being rehabilitated, a new surface plant built and a 20-stamp mill installed. In 1942 the mine closed. The 20-stamp mill was used for a while in 1953 to process chromite ore for the El Dorado Chrome Company, who operated the Chaix, Murphy and other local chromite mines. Similarly, in late 1953 and 1954 tungsten ore was processed there.
The gold deposit at the Church mine consists of three parallel veins 5 to 10-feet thick. The west vein contained only low grade material and the east vein was worked at the Union Mine site. The middle vein, or Kidney vein, was where the principal mining was done, with working levels at 100, 200, 300, 350, 500, 600, 700, 850, 1000 and 1200 feet, where crosscuts were developed into the vein. Nearest the surface, the ore produced as much as $30 per ton, with the value decreasing to $17 per ton at the 1300 foot level and only $4 per ton beyond. Much of the Church mine is part of the County’s former landfill area.

On the Mother Lode, one and one-half miles southeast of Garden Valley was the Cincinnati mine. Active only in 1917-18, it was developed by open cuts and shallow shafts. The ore yielded only $3.82 of gold per ton, which was recovered by mercury amalgamation.

The C. J. Kuchel claim consisted of 155 acres about two miles east of Mt. Aukum.

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Mines of El Dorado County: “C” (Part 2)

The Claghorn (Growers) mine was a drift mine on Cedar Creek, two miles south of Fair Play. Here an ancient gravel channel was mined for its gold by a 200-foot adit.

On the south side of Texas Hill, one mile southeast of Placerville was the Clark mine, a placer drift mine. Active only in the early days of the Gold Rush, it was developed by a several hundred foot adit, through which gold on several benches of the ancient river channel was removed.

The Clay Hill placer mine, was located on 80 acres just north of Placerville.

The Cleveland mine was a lode gold mine about two miles north of Kelsey.

About one mile north of Kelsey was the Climax mine, a lode gold mine.

The Clyde Lode, was a lode gold mine near the South Fork of the American River, about five miles west of Coloma.

The Clydesdale Consolidated mines were lode gold mines at two adjacent locations about 2 miles southeast of Georgetown: the Golden Gate Location and the Clydesdale Location.

The Coe Hill (Bathurst, Gold Star) mine was on the Mother Lode one mile south of Garden Valley. Active only in the 1920s, it was developed by shallow shafts and an adit. The veins yielded $6 to $20 of gold per ton.

The Cold Springs Sand and Gravel Company quarry was on Weber Creek, 4 miles west of Placerville. From 1950 to April of 1953, the El Dorado Rock and Sand Company produced sand, gravel and crushed rock from this deposit. In April of 1953, the deposit was leased by L. D. Forni who operated it under the name of the Cold Springs Sand and Gravel Company. Sand and gravel was excavated from the banks of Weber Creek by a dragline mounted on a truck and then processed and stockpiled nearby.

Near the South Fork of the American River, about two miles south of Kelsey was the Coleman and Berryman Consolidated mine, a lode gold mining operation. It consisted of two operations, the Coleman Location and the Berryman Location.
One mile to the northeast of Garden Valley was the Coloma Quartz mine’s Craft Location. It was mined along with other locations.

The Collins mine was a lode gold mine about one mile southeast of Greenwood on the western branch of the Mother Lode.

The Colwell mine was a placer mine on the South Fork of the American River about four miles west of Lotus. Nearer to Lotus, also on the same river was the Colwell 2 placer mine.

About five miles southeast of Pilot Hill and two miles southwest of Lotus was the Colwell Ranch lode gold mine.

The Collins and Bacchi mine was a very small operation near Garden Valley that was prospected prior to 1914.

The Columbia Flat placer mine was near Dutch Creek, about two miles north of Kelsey on the west side of the Placerville-Georgetown Road (now Highway 193).

The Comeback Consolidated (Bear Creek) mine was a tungsten mine 7 miles northeast of Placerville and 4 miles due east of Spanish Flat, near the north bank of Rock Creek. First located in 1930, it was worked during the years 1931-31, when $3,000 to $4,000 in tungsten ore (scheelite) was produced by sluicing. Adits 187-feet, 80-feet and 240-feet in length were used to remove the ore from a 2 to 3 foot vein of calcite. This property has been the source of the total recorded output of tungsten ore in the County.

The Confederate mine was a gravel drift mine two and one half miles southwest of Fair Play. Active in 1896, it was mined for gold by two adits, 250 and 200 feet in length.

The Confidence Consolidated mining operation consisted of a string of lode gold claims south of Nashville, near the Amador County line.

The Confidence and Glove Consolidated placer mining operation worked 40 acres on Ringgold Creek, about one and one half miles east of Diamond Springs.

The Consolidated Hydraulic claim consisted of 60 acres on Weber Creek about one mile south of Placerville.

The Consolidated Unity Extension mines, just north of Weber Creek about one and one half miles north of Rescue, consisted of the Laura Lode and the Emma Lode.

The Contraband (Ford) mine was two miles southeast of Georgetown. Active in 1860, 1902 and 1910, a 12-foot vein was mined for native copper and copper sulfides. Asbestos was also mined from this property before 1906.

The Cooley mine was a drift mine at Volcanoville. A William Ogles took some gold from it in 1934 and 1936.

The Cool-Cave Valley (Cowell-Cave Valley) mine is a limestone quarry on the largest limestone deposit in El Dorado County.  It is located 4 miles east of Auburn on the south side of the Middle Fork of the American River.  The two lenses of high purity (97% calcium carbonate) limestone at this location measure 5500 feet by 400 feet and 2000 feet by 600 feet.  Their depth is unknown, but they have been worked as deep as 800 feet at the north end.  No one knows for sure when limestone was first removed from this location, but during the 1880’s and 1890’s, limestone was quarried from the southern part of the deposit and burned in stone lime kilns for the production of cement.  From 1910 – 1940 the Pacific Portland Cement Company operated a massive quarry at the north end of the deposit, by the Middle Fork of the American River.  This deep quarry, known as Mountain Quarries, produced enormous amounts of limestone that was crushed, sized and shipped over a company owned railroad across the “No Hands Bridge” to Auburn and then to either their plant in Solano County or beet sugar refineries (limestone of very high purity is necessary for the production of beet sugar).  In 1942 the quarry was abandoned and the railroad dismantled.  Later, this portion of the quarry would be reactivated and later, be acquired for Auburn Reservoir.  The southern portion of this quarry is still mined with the limestone being used for beet-sugar refining and other purposes.  Mining at this location has been by many methods, one interesting one called “coyote” holes.  Several adits were driven into the quarry face and then branches perpendicular to it.  These were loaded with dynamite and a whole years supply of limestone was dislodged in one huge blast.

The Coon Hollow mine, which included the Excelsior Claim, was one of the largest drift and hydraulic mines in El Dorado County. It was located one mile south of Placerville at what is now appropriately known as Big Cut. From 1852 to 1861 the gravel was removed by drifting and between 1861 and 1871, by hydraulic means. Water for the water “cannons” was brought by ditch and pipe from miles up the American River Canyon. Through the use of water pressure, ten million dollars in gold was removed from gravel that averaged about $1 per yard (yes, that is 10,000,000 cubic yards of material, or more, that was removed). The tailings from the operation, which were deposited in the canyons to the south, were later mined for silica and even later for aggregate to build bridges, freeways and other roads.

The Copper Chief mine was a copper mining operation two miles east of Georgetown. Mining was done from two outcrops, 100 to 200 feet wide.

The Costa Ranch mine was a copper mine two miles southwest of Pilot Hill. The veins of ore were mined by a 60-foot vertical shaft and open cuts.

The Cosumnes mine was a copper mine four miles north of Fair Play, by the Cosumnes River. Originally worked in 1859, it was re-activated in both 1896 and during WWI. During WWII, some ore was produced from open cuts. In 1955 a lessee reopened some of the old workings. The mine is worked through a 150-foot crosscut adit driven westward with drifts running northeast and southwest along the mineralized zone. In addition, there is a lower crosscut adit about 40-feet below the main adit, connected to it by a winze, along with a number of open cuts on the surface.

Another Cosumnes (Melton, Middle End) mine was a lode gold mine located two and one-half miles north of Grizzly Flat. During the 1880’s and early 1890’s it was known as the Melton Mine. In 1928 it was reopened as the Middle End Mine and was operated until 1942. Cosumnes Mines Inc., reopened it again in 1945 and continued its operation until the 1950’s. The main, or Middle End, vein, had an average width of three feet, which contained as much as $25 per ton in gold. Gold sulfide concentrates, which were trucked to a smelter, yielded as much as $200 per ton of gold. The mine was developed by a 380-foot southwest crosscut adit and several thousand feet of drifts.

The Cothrin mine was a copper mine near Cothrin Station (north of Latrobe). It was developed by a 100-foot shaft.

The Cousin Jack (a name often given to Cornish miners) mine was located five miles southwest of Grizzly Flat and active prior to 1894. A one to 4-foot wide vein of gold bearing quartz was mined by 400 and 300-foot drift adits and a 70-foot winze.

The Cove Hill mine was a lode gold mine about three miles south of Georgetown.

The Cowell Lime mine, which was also known as the Blue Marble Quarry, became the above Cool-Cave Valley Quarry.

Another Cowell mine was a very small chromite mine three miles east of Clarksville. Four carloads of ore was removed during WWI.

The Coyote Hill lode gold mine was located about one and one half miles west of the town of El Dorado.

The Cranes Gulch (Whitesides) mine was a seam gold mine one mile south of Georgetown. Prior to 1874 $100,000 in gold was produced from an open pit 250 feet long, 150 feet wide and 70 feet deep.

The Crawford mine was a lode gold mine near Somerset.

The Croft mine was a lode gold mine about one mile southeast of Greenwood on the west branch of the Mother Lode.

The Crown Point Consolidated (Bald Eagle, Gold Queen) mine was on the Mother Lode, one and one-half miles southeast of Diamond Springs. Originally developed in 1894 and reactivated in 1923, three veins of quartz, 4 to 20-feet wide were developed by a 500-foot inclined shaft with working levels at 100, 200, 300 and 400 feet. Water was removed from the shaft by a 600-foot drain tunnel that intersected the shaft at the 300-foot level. There was also a second shaft, 150-feet deep, to the south of the main shaft.

On the Mother Lode two miles south of Diamond Springs was the Crusader mine. Active prior to 1914 and later in 1929, its 3-foot wide vein of gold bearing quartz was mined by a 100-foot inclined shaft with a 100-foot working level.
There were at least three lode gold mines in El Dorado County by the name of Crystal. The first was one-half mile north of Cool and active in 1896 and 1931. A gold bearing quartz vein was developed by a 25-foot shaft and two, 60-foot inclined shafts.

The second Crystal Mine was on the Cosumnes River, five miles southeast of Grizzly Flat. Active around 1894, its three veins were mined by 70 and 250-foot shafts and a 1200-foot crosscut adit.

The third and largest Crystal Mine, also known as the El Dorado Crystal Mine, was 3 miles south of Shingle Springs and a half mile south of the community of Frenchtown. A vein of quartz as much as 12 feet wide was originally worked prior to 1890, through a 250-foot inclined shaft and a 350-foot crosscut adit. The ore was treated on-site with a 10-stamp mill. The mine was reopened in 1937 by Ben Lockwood of Shingle Springs, who operated it until 1940. Ultimately, the mine was developed by the 250-foot inclined shaft and a 1,028-foot adit. 328 feet in from the portal (opening) of the adit, a 480-foot inclined winze was sunk with levels at 200, 326 and 456 feet.

The Crystal Complex mine was a lode gold mine about one mile north of Kelsey.

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Mines of El Dorado County: “D”

A lode gold mine known as the Dailey and Bishop was located two miles south of Grizzly Flat. It was active around 1896 when a one and one-half to three-foot vein of gold bearing quartz in slate was developed by a 800-foot drift adit, crosscuts, and winze. The ore was treated on site in a ten-stamp mill.

Just east of the town of Kelsey was the Dalmatia (Kelly) Mine, a large lode gold mine. Numerous quartz seams and a quartz vein were found in a zone that varied in width from 20 to 50-feet, which were worked in the 1880’s, 1890-94 and again around 1935. A two-foot vein assayed at $16 per ton, a single pocket yielded $14,000 and the seams yielded around $2 to #3 per ton. The mine was originally worked in an open cut some 500 feet long and later was developed by a 200-foot inclined shaft and a 1200-foot adit. The ore was treated on site in a 10-stamp mill.

The Daniel McGee claim was 30 acres on the north side of the South Fork of the American River, just northwest of Lotus.

The Daniel R. Carson claim was on the North Fork of the Cosumnes River in Ladies Valley, about one and one-half miles downstream from Bucks Bar. It was 120 acres in size.

The Daniel T. Hall claim consisted of 50 acres on White Oak Creek, about two miles north of Shingle Springs

The Darling (Chanced Upon) mine was four miles northeast of Spanish Flat. A two-foot vein of gold bearing quartz in slate yielded $5 to $6 per ton in free gold. The deposit was developed by a 190-foot shaft. The ore was treated on site in a 10-stamp mill.

The Darlington mine was a soapstone mine three mines southeast of Placerville, near Weber Creek. It was active in the 1880’s when sawed slabs of soapstone were produced. The massive lens up to 25-feet wide and 130-feet long was developed by open cuts.

The Darrington (Gurney) mine was a chromite mine located seven miles southwest of Pilot Hill. Worked originally during WWI, when several hundred tons of ore were produced, it was reopened during WWII and worked in conjunction with the nearby Dobbas Mine. During this later period of operation, some 495 long tons (2240 pounds in a long ton) were removed, mostly from the Darrington workings. The ore is in two zones of disseminated chromite with a high iron content. The east ore zone is about 300 feet long and 70 feet wide, and estimated to contain some 100,000 tons of ore. The west zone has not be significantly worked. Development has been by open cuts, four adits totaling 900 feet and shafts and raises totalling 120 feet.

On the Mother Lode, one-half mile east of Garden Valley was the Davenport mine. A lode gold mine, it was originally active in 1934 and later worked jointly with the Black Oak mine. It was developed by a 280-foot crosscut adit and open cuts.

The Davey Quartz mine was on the Mother Lode, on the south side of Placerville.

The David mine was a manganese mine just to the west of Georgetown. Open cuts were used to remove the ore that averaged from five to ten percent manganese.

The David W. Cary placer mine was located one and one-half miles north of Georgetown and consisted of nearly 160 acres. It was so large it was in two different townships.

The Davison mine was a lode gold mine located two miles northwest of the townsite of El Dorado. Originally worked sometime prior to 1894, it was later owned by Jerome M. Strickland and was often referred to as the Strickland Mine, from which Strickland Mine Road gets its name. A two-foot vein of gold bearing quartz was developed by a 280-foot inclined shaft with 100 and 300-foot levels. The ore was treated in a 20-stamp mill, which was later replaced with a smaller, 5-stamp mill.

The Day and Taylor quartz mine was on 20 acres one and one-half miles north of Grizzly Flat.

The Deadhead placer mine consisted of 200 acres on a tributary of Clear Creek, about one mile northwest of Pleasant Valley.

The Deep Channel placer mine consisted of 100 acres one-half mile northwest of Indian Diggings.

The Defiance mine was a very small lode gold mine five miles northeast of Shingle Springs. Nothing much more is known about it. There was also a Defiance placer mine on 160 acres just west of Garden Valley.

The Del Ray mine was a lode mine just north of the South Fork of the American River, three miles southeast of Pilot Hill.

The Demuth mine was a lode gold mine on the Mother Lode one mile south of Garden Valley.

The Detert mine was a copper mine about one-half mile east of Pilot Hill.

The Diamond Hill placer mine was a part of a large ancient (Tertiary) gravel area to the north of the townsite of Diamond Springs, remnants of which can still be seen in open cuts along Highway 49 near Lime Kiln Road. Much of it was mined hydraulically, many years ago before mining by this method was outlawed by the State of California in response to siltation complaints from the agricultural interests in the valley, among other reasons.

The Diamond Springs Limestone mine is a large limestone quarry three miles to the east of Diamond Springs, on Quarry Road. Limestone has been mined at this location since at least the days of the Gold Rush, and probably even earlier. Within the structure of the Washington Monument, in Washington D.C. the Great State of California is represented by a block of limestone donated from this quarry over a hundred years ago.
When this limestone lens, some 2,500 feet long and as much as 500 feet wide was owned by the Diamond Springs Lime Company, the material was mined and shipped to their processing plant just north of the townsite (now the location of the refuse transfer station) by a unique (and unquestionably noisy) overhead tramway. The three mile long aerial tramway had 149 buckets of 800 pounds capacity each, that could supply the plant with as much as 30 tons per hour. Where the tramway passed over roads, the roads and vehicles were protected from falling rock by a steel mesh cover. The tramway was disassembled around 1954.
With the tramway gone, the Diamond Springs Lime Plant started getting most of its material from mines in Shingle Springs and Cool. When the federal government purchased the part of the mine in Cool from which their material came, the lime plant was unable to find another suitable source and closed.
The mine on Quarry Road, which is developed by a large open pit, continues to operate, providing high grade limestone for the road building, agriculture, and pharmaceutical industries, among others.

The Dick Canon (canyon in Spanish)  Placer mine was located on 20 acres, about one mile south of Omo Ranch.

Three miles east of Clarksville was a chromite mine known as the Dickson mine. Here, ore was mined from a northwest-trending series of chromite pods by using an open cut.

The Dirty Flat mine was a placer mine about one mile east of Smith Flat.

The Dividend mine was on Pinchem Creek, some four miles northwest of Rescue. During the 1880’s, 1890’s and from 1912-15, an extensive deposit of gold bearing gravel one to three-feet thick on granite bedrock was worked by ground sluicing.

The Dobbas mine was located two miles north of Flagstaff Hill. During WWI, when the property was owned by the Placer Chrome Company and a portion leased to the Union Chrome Company, there was a substantial amount of work at this mine when a number of open pits, and several shafts and adits were developed. During WWII, the appropriately named Rustless Mining Company removed some ore from this property which, along with ore from other mines in the area (including the Darrington) was taken to the Volo Mill near Placerville where it was concentrated. The deposit consists of several ore bodies of talc-chlorite or talc-serpentine rock. Like the ore at the Darrington mine, it was also high in iron. Five principal ore bodies have been worked there by open pits and shallow shafts.

One-half mile east of Greenwood was the Donozo mine. At this location a small vein of gold bearing quartz was developed by 60-foot drift adits.

The Dormody Placer mine consisted of a series of claim totaling 166 acres on Green Springs Creek at Green Valley Road, about one and one-half miles north of Bass Lake Reservoir.

The Dorsey was a placer gold mine on 197 acres, one mile northeast of Indian Diggins on East Indian Creek.

The Drouillard Placer mine was near Indian Diggings. Nothing more seems to be known about it or any Mr. Drouillard.

The Double E mine was a manganese mine two miles southeast of the townsite of El Dorado. It was only a small, low-grade deposit and never significantly worked.

The Dr. Wren mine was a copper mine located three miles southeast of El Dorado, to the east of the Mother Lode. A six-foot vein of ore, containing 5 – 18 percent copper was developed by a 18-foot shaft.

The Duncan and Adams mine was one mile southeast of the townsite of El Dorado. A lode gold mine, it was only active in 1931 when 700 tons of ore was mined that yielded $10,266.

The Dyer mine was a lode gold mine about two miles due west of Grizzly Flat.

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Mines of El Dorado County: “E”

The Eagle mine was a lode gold mine located on 47 acres one and one-half miles north of Grizzly Flat. A three foot wide vein was worked for gold, while another deposit 150 feet long and up to 6 feet wide contained appreciable amounts of auriferous (gold containing) pyrite, galena (lead ore) and sphalerite (zinc ore). The mine was developed by a 780-foot drift adit and a 240-foot shaft.

A second Eagle lode gold mine was located on 18 acres just east of Greenwood.

A third  Eagle mine was a placer gold mine on 122 acres about one and one-half miles northwest of Omo Ranch on a tributary of the Middle Fork of the Cosumnes River.

A fourth Eagle mine was a placer gold mine on 40 acres one mile south of Georgetown.

The Eagle Bird mine was a placer mine three miles southeast of Placerville.

The Eagle King mine was a lode gold mine near the first Eagle Mine mentioned, one-half mine further north of Grizzly Flat. A gold bearing quartz vein three to four feet wide, like at the Eagle Mine, contained not only free gold but also appreciable amounts of auriferous pyrite, galena and sphalerite. The mine was active from 1894-1896 and developed by a 1200-foot drift adit and a 60-foot winze 200 feet from the portal. The ore was treated in a ten-stamp mill.

The Earl Quartz mine was a lode gold mine one mile west of Grizzly Flat.

The Earl Fruit Co. mine was a placer mine located near the South Fork of the American River and is now under Folsom Lake. The Earl Fruit Co. was a major fruit packing company with a large facility in Placerville at one time.

The Eastern Buckeye placer mine was located on 31 acres one mile southeast of Placerville.

The Echo claim was on the Mother lode one and one-half miles northeast of Diamond Springs.

The Eden Consolidated Quartz mine was on 31 acres of the Mother Lode, one and one-half miles south of Placerville.

The Edner mine was located on 87 acres one and one-half miles southeast of Omo Ranch, in the very southern part of El Dorado County. A one and one-half foot wide vein of gold bearing quartz was mined in 1896 and developed by an 150-foot adit and a fifty foot shaft. There was also an Edner Placer mine near or at the same location. It is listed as being 87 acres in size.

The Edward Crocker claim was on 140 acres three miles west of Rescue. Given its location, it was probably a lode gold claim.

The E. E. Copper mine was four miles southeast of El Dorado. In addition to copper, gold and silver were mined at this location by means of an 85-foot vertical shaft, 200 feet of drifts and 100 and 300-foot adits.

The Elain, Washington and Witmer claims were a group of claims on 39 acres, one mile east of Omo Ranch.

The Elder placer mine was on the South Fork of the American River, four miles east of Salmon Falls.

There have been a number of mines in the county with the name El Dorado. The Church mine, two miles south of the town of El Dorado, was once known as the El Dorado. There was also an El Dorado lode gold mine in Spanish Dry Diggings, just south of the Middle Fork of the American River and and El Dorado placer gold claim on Otter Creek, six miles northeast of Georgetown.

The El Dorado Big Tunnel Company was a mining company that, in the 1890’s, operated a mine at Big Canyon, two miles north of Placerville. Later the mine was purchased by the Gentle Annie Mining Company. Ultimately, this mine, under the name of the Gentle Annie, would be consolidated with the Bell, Hall Consolidated, Lucky Star, Lyon and New Era claims under the name of the River Hill Group. The El Dorado Big Tunnel Company also operated a slate mine near Chili Bar around 1894.

One mile south of Garden Valley was the El Dorado (Roosevelt) Copper mine. Located on the Mother Lode gold belt, the mine was originally worked for gold in the 1860’s. During WWII some copper was discovered and mined. Because of the need for copper for the war effort, during the period 1944 – 45 the U.S. Bureau of Mines used a diamond drill to create eleven exploratory holes, aggregating a total of 1613 feet. Eight of these holes indicated the deposit to be a series of narrow, intermittent lenses of copper ore in an area about 600 feet in length and several hundred feet deep. The ore contained from five to more than ten percent copper, as much as one and one-half percent zinc, one ounce per ton of silver and traces of nickel and gold. The mine was developed by a 100-foot inclined shaft, a 173-foot adit, driven as a crosscut for forty-six feet and a drift for 127 feet, which connects with the shaft at the fifty foot level, 128 feet in from the adit portal. On the 100 foot level, there are drifts extending thirty-five feet to the north and ten feet to the south.

The El Dorado County Road Department (later Public Works and now Department of Transportation) has operated several stone quarries over the years. From these deposits of decomposed granite they have taken material for “road metal” (surfacing material), fill material and sand for increasing vehicle traction on icy roads. Presently they operate only one sand quarry on Sandridge Road, near the townsite of Somerset. But, at one time there were county operated sand and gravel pits in the Deer Valley-Rescue-Shingle Springs area, just south of Lotus and a few miles east of Mt. Aukum. Serpentine material was also excavated by the county for “road metal” from the Hummingbird Ranch quarry one mile west of Garden Valley.

The El Dorado Dredging Corporation was a mining group that operated a one and one-half cubic yard dragline dredge on Greenwood, Coloma, Rock Canyon, and Irish Creeks during the years 1940-42 and again in 1948.

The El Dorado Limestone mine was an underground operation, three miles southwest of Shingle Springs. From it was produced high-calcium (97 percent plus) limestone for various uses including the manufacture of lime, steel and glass, beet-sugar refining and construction materials. Prior to the opening of the mine by the El Dorado Lime and Minerals company in 1918, limestone was quarried just north of the mine and burned in nearby stone lime kilns for building purposes. In 1931, the El Dorado Limestone Company was formed and operated the mine until it closed. The deposit consists of two lenses of limestone, one averaging sixty feet in width, the other forty feet. The main working entry is a 1000 foot, three compartment vertical shaft near the east wall of the east lens. Crosscuts extend from the shaft to the west lens. The deepest workings were at the 800 foot level. Because the material is solid, no timbering is required. In the 1970’s mining ceased and the shaft was allowed to flood with water. The crushing equipment on the surface continued to be used for several years, the limestone coming from the Gallo Glass mining operations at Marble Valley, to the west.

The El Dorado Slate Products Company (Chadborne) operated a slate mine on the south side of Big Canyon (apparently there are several Big Canyons in El Dorado County), one and one-half miles north of Placerville. Roofing slate was produced from several quarries during the 1920’s, which was then sent across the canyon via an overhead cable. Waste was sold for roofing granules.

The El Dorado Water and Deep Gravel Mining Company was another mining group that operated hydraulic and drift, placer gold mines on the ancient (tertiary) river beds in the Placerville area. Among their workings were the Coon Hollow (Big Cut) claim and the Excelsior Mine.

The Electric Consolidated mine was a lode gold mine on 14 acres of the Mother Lode, one-half mile north of Placerville.

The Elial L. Parker claim was on 120 acres of the Mother Lode, one mile south of Placerville.

The Elliott (Sir Walter Raleigh) mine was located on the Mother Lode, two miles south of Placerville. Around 1894 a four-foot vein of gold bearing quartz in slate was developed by a fifty-foot inclined shaft and crosscut adit.

The 19 acre Emma mine was located two miles northwest of Garden Valley on the western branch of the Mother Lode. Active before 1890, a four-foot vein of gold bearing quartz was worked by means of a 100-foot shaft.

The Empire placer mine was located on 20 acres one mile southeast of Georgetown, while the Empire lode claim was north of Volcanoville, just south of the Middle Fork of the American River.

The Encilan Mining Co. operated a placer mine one mile west of Omo Ranch on or near Brownsville Creek.

The Endress was a placer mine on 20 acres one mile northwest of Lotus near the South Fork of the American River.

The Enoch Redding mine was a placer mine two miles east of Fair Play in Slug Gulch.

The Enterprise Quartz mine was a lode mine on the Mother Lode on the northern side of Placerville, while the Enterprise Placer mine was on 49 acres in Randolph Canyon, north of Smith Flat.

The Epley and Mammoth (Epley Group) quartz claim consisted of 27 acres on the Mother Lode one mile south of Placerville.

The Equator Mine was three miles south of Diamond Springs, on the Mother Lode. Three veins of gold bearing quartz were developed by a 1300-foot crosscut adit and an 110-foot inclined shaft.

The Ernst Weber claim consisted of 120 acres one-half mile south of Placerville. From its location it appears to be a placer claim.

The Eskridge was a placer mine on the North Fork of the American River and is now under Folsom Lake.

The Esperanza mine was a lode gold mine located one mile northwest of Garden Valley on the western branch of the Mother Lode. Active in the last decade of the nineteenth century, it was developed by a 600-foot vertical shaft and 700 feet of drifts. The ore was treated in a 20-stamp mill. There was also another Esperanza mine one-half mile east of Greenwood that later became known as the Skipper Mine.

The Estelle was a lode mine consisting of 10 acres on the Mother Lode, two miles south of Kelsey.

The Ethel lode claim was six miles east of Garden Valley. Nothing else is known about it.

It is not surprising that there were at least six mines with the name of Eureka, it being the motto of the State of California. One of these became a part of the Woodside-Eureka mine, another a part of the immense workings of the Placerville Gold Mining Co. The Eureka mine just north of Georgetown was only active prior to 1888. Three parallel veins of gold bearing quartz, six to ten feet wide, were developed by a 240-foot inclined shaft and 500 feet of drifts. One Eureka lode mine was on 20 acres two miles west of the town of El Dorado while another was on 10 acres two miles west of Grizzly Flat.

Placer mines named Eureka were located on 37 acres one mile east of Kelsey, on 60 acres along the South Fork of the American River just north of Lotus and on a tributary of Weber Creek, one and one-half miles south of Placerville. This last one may have been the one controlled by the Placerville Gold Mining Co.

The Eureka Slate Quarry, operated by the Sierra Slate Company, was located one mile south of Kelsey. This was a big mining operation that was active for some forty years, from around 1886 until 1926. Dimension slate for a multitude of uses was mined from the quarry that had a 200-foot face and a depth of 200 feet. The mined slate was delivered to Placerville for transport on the railroad by means of a spectacular 13,000 foot long aerial tramway.

The Eusey was a placer mine consisted of 20 acres on the Cosumnes River in Nashville.

The Eusley was a placer mine on 50 acres two miles east of Fair Play in Slug Gulch.

The Ever mine was a chromite mine near Cothrin Station, between Shingle Springs and Latrobe. A 100 foot wide zone of small streaks and lenses of chromite was prospected in 1918. There are no production records available.

The Excelsior mine was adjacent to the Coon Hollow, one mile south of Placerville. Between the years 1852 and 1871, about five million dollars in gold was recovered by drifting and hydraulicking this ancient river channel, resulting in much of what is now known as Big Cut. Later, in the years 1907 – 11, the deposit was further worked by drifting. The gravel from the drifting operation was treated in a ten-stamp mill.

Three miles north of Shingle Springs was the Expansion, a lode gold mine. Here auriferous pyrite was the gold source. The deposit was worked form 1900-04 and later prospected in 1936. Mining was by way of a 150-foot crosscut adit.

The Extension of the Phillips and Joiner quartz mine consisted of nine acres two miles west of Grizzly Flat.

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