Monthly Archives: May 2012

Mines of El Dorado County: “L”

The  Lady mine was a lode gold mine on 11.97 acres of the Mother Lode one mile south of Kelsey.

The Lady Blanche mine was a lode gold mine three and one-half miles east of Fair Play. The deposit consisted of a 1 to 4-foot wide gold-bearing quartz vein that was developed by two adits, 180 feet and 80 feet in length. The mine was active in 1896.

The Lady Edner mine was a placer gold mine located one-half mile northwest of Omo Ranch.

The Lady Emma (Currie) mine was a lode gold mine one mile east of Kelsey. It was active around 1896 and later prospected in 1942 and 1947. The 4-foot vein of gold-bearing quartz was developed by a 300-foot inclined shaft and a 150-foot vertical shaft with drifts and crosscuts. Once removed, the ore was treated on-site in a 10-stamp mill.

The Lady Jane mine was a placer gold claim just north of Chiquita, three miles southeast of Volcanoville.

The Laicey mine was a chromite mine one and three-quarters miles west of Garden Valley. The deposit consisted of small chromite pods in serpentine and talc. It was developed by open cuts.

The La Moille, Ophir mine was a lode gold mine located on 11.10 acres two and a half miles directly south of the town of El Dorado. It was active prior to 1896 when several gold-bearing quartz seams were prospected.

The Landecker (Hope) mine was a placer gold drift mine one and one-half miles southeast of Placerville. It was active in the early 1900’s and later in 1925 and 1935.

With a similarly spelled name, one of El Dorado County’s several slate mines, this one located near Kelsey, was the Landeker mine. It was active in the 1880s when roofing slate was produced.

One mile east of Diamond Springs on the Mother Lode was the Larkin mine, a lode gold mine that was also mined for copper and other minerals. The deposit consisted of two distinct veins of gold-bearing quartz, the west one being explored by a vertical shaft and the east one reached by crosscut from the 250-foot level. In 1896 the a 250-foot vertical shaft was sunk and the ore treated in a five-stamp mill. By 1900 the shaft had been extended to 600 feet and the mill expanded to ten stamps. In 1903 the shaft was extended to 800 feet and then the mine was shut down. In 1918 it was reopened and some copper ore was produced. The total production for the mine is estimated to be $125,000. The deposit consisted of several gold-bearing quartz veins, the largest ranging in width from 4 to 12 feet. In addition to the gold, some of the veins contained pyrite, chalcopyrite and malachite (both ores of copper) and as much as 10% copper. Dolomite (similar to limestone, but containing more magnesium) was also mined here.

The Last Chance mine was a lode gold mine one mile south of Volcanoville. It was active in 1896 and developed by a 50-foot vertical shaft and a 400-foot crosscut adit. The ore removed from its 5-foot wide gold-bearing quartz vein was treated in a 4-stamp mill.

At Henry’s Diggings, two miles northeast of Omo Ranch, in the southern part of El Dorado County, was another Last Chance mine, this one a placer gold mine. Other than being a 40 acre claim, little more in known about this mine since it has been idle so long nobody could determine when it was actually active.

A third Last Chance mine was a placer gold mine on 54.15 acres one mile south of Smith Flat.

A fourth Last Chance mine was a lode gold mine on 20.66 acres one-half mile north of Coloma near Mt. Murphy.

The Last Hope mine was a placer gold mine located one mile south of Omo Ranch and one mile northwest of Indian Diggings.

The Last Resort mine was a placer gold mine on 20 acres, one mile west of Indian Diggings.

One of several mines with the name Latrobe was a lode gold mine one and one-half miles east of Latrobe.

The Lattimore mine was a lode gold mine three miles northwest of Greenwood, on the west branch of the Mother Lode just south of the Middle Fork of the American River.

The Lava Hill mine was a placer gold mine located about two miles southeast of Camino, near Weber Creek.

The  Leahey and Riley mine was a placer gold mine on 8.88 acres, one mile south of Rescue.

The Le Bouf and England mine was a lode gold mine on 20.67 acres of the east branch of the Mother Lode, one and a half miles north of Georgetown.

During the years 1939-40 the Lemroh Mining Company, based in San Francisco, operated a dragline dredge at various gravel deposits in the county.

The Leslie Hydraulic mine was a placer gold mine on 40.00 acres one mile east of Camino.

The Levenson mine was a hydraulic, placer gold mine, one mile southeast of the town of Fair Play. It was active around 1896 when a 50-foot bank of ancient river gravel was mined. The gravel was then run through 120 feet of sluices to separate out the gold.

The Levi Rosier mine was a placer gold claim on 80.00 acres, two and a half miles northeast of Placerville just south of the South Fork of the American River.

There were two Levitt mines, both of which were lode gold mines on the Mother Lode. One was one  mile south of Kelsey and the other two miles south of Kelsey. Later information shows a Levitt Consolidated lode gold mine on 37.97 acres of the Mother Lode, one and a half miles southeast of Kelsey, which probably includes both of these mines.

The Lilly Placer mine was a placer gold mine on 30.00 acres one mile north of Garden Valley on or very near Empire Creek.

The Lincoln mine was a seam gold mine located one mile northwest of Georgetown that was active in 1896 and again in 1926. The thin seams of gold bearing quartz were located in a belt 300 feet wide what was developed by a 100-foot open cut and three adits, 150, 110 and 60 feet in length. Once the ore was removed and treated, it was run through some 900 feet of sluices.

The Lincoln Placer mine was a placer gold mine on 20.00 acres two and a half miles northeast of Smith Flat on South Canyon Creek.

In 1937 the Lincoln Gold Dredging Company operated a dragline dredge at one or more unidentified gravel deposits in the county.

In Cedar Ravine, one and one-half miles southeast of Placerville, was the Linden mine, a placer gold mine. During the years 1882-94, 40,000 cubic yards of gravel was processed, yielding $130,000 in gold. A portion of the gold-bearing ancient river channel, known as the Deep Blue Lead channel, was developed by a 4000-foot adit with numerous drifts and two shafts. The cemented gravel was treated in a 10-stamp mill.

The Lion mine was a lode gold mine on 12.17 acres of the Mother Lode, one mile northwest of Placerville.

The Little Big Hole mine was a placer gold mine on the Middle Fork of the Cosumnes River, five miles northeast of Fair Play. It was active in 1926 when the river was diverted and a 250-foot adit was driven into the gravel. It was also active in the late 1970s when a mining company attempted to mine gold by removing the gravel from the “Big Hole” in the river.

On Canyon Creek, two miles north of Georgetown was the Little Chief mine. A seam gold mine active in 1894, it was developed by 130-foot and 240-foot adits. The ore was treated in a one-stamp mill. There was also a placer gold mine of the same name on 90 acres at the same location.

Another Little Chief mine, this one a placer mine, was located on a tributary of Otter Creek, four miles north of Georgetown near Bottle Hill.

The Little Giant mine was a lode gold mine on about 20 acres one mile west of the town of El Dorado.

The Live Oak mine was a small lode gold mine one mile east of Diamond Springs. It was active prior to 1896 when it was developed by a 30-foot shaft. There was also a Live Oak placer gold mine with an undetermined location due to printing errors on a map.

Five miles south of Shingle Springs was a lode gold mine known as the Log Cabin (Darrow) mine. Located on 15.205 acres near Mt. Aigare, it was active in 1894-96, when a 2 to 16-foot wide vein of gold-bearing quartz was developed by a 600-foot crosscut adit, numerous drifts and a 30-foot shaft. The ore was treated on-site in a five-stamp mill.

On 11.713 acres of the west branch of the  Mother Lode, one mile northwest of Garden Valley, was a lode gold mine know as the Lone Jack mine. A vein of gold-bearing quartz, up to 24 feet in width, was developed by a 400-foot shaft. The ore, which contained $6 of gold per ton, was treated in a 10-stamp mill.

One mile southeast of Nashville, near the Cosumnes River, was the Lone Star mine, a lode gold mine. Located on 19.68 acres of the Mother Lode, it had a seven-foot wide vein of gold-bearing quartz that was developed by a 100-foot shaft and a 100-foot drift around 1894.

Another Lone Star mine was located two miles (one mile in some descriptions) southeast of Diamond Springs. Also a lode gold mine on the Mother Lode, it was active in 1894-96 and again in 1907-08 when a two to five-foot vein of gold-bearing quartz was developed by a 500-foot crosscut adit.

A third Lone Star mine was also a lode gold mine located on the Mother Lode, three miles south of the town of El Dorado.

The Lone Star Tunnel and Hydraulic mine was a placer gold mine consisting of 100.00 acres three miles east of Smith Flat.

The appropriately named Longshot mine was a small copper mine located one mile west of the Cosumnes copper mine, which was four miles north of Fair Play, near the Cosumnes River. It was developed by a 200-foot adit, but only worked intermittently, more as a prospect than a real mine.

The Lookout mine was a lode gold mine on the Mother Lode, some three miles southwest of El Dorado and one-half mile south of the Union mine. It was intermittently active from 1860 through the 1930s. The gold was found in small, but rich ore shoots that were developed by a 400-foot adit which was later extended to over 600 feet. The mine produced $2,200 in 1912 and $15,000 in 1933 when a strike was made in the roof of the adit, where a raise was started 520 feet from the portal and 270 feet below the surface.

The Lookout and K.K. mine was a lode gold mine in Quartz Canyon, near Volcanoville, northeast of Georgetown. It was active in 1894-96 when a two-foot vein of gold-bearing quartz was developed by a 200-foot crosscut adit, several drifts and a 34-foot inclined shaft.

In 1949 and 1950, a company known as Lord and Bishop operated a three cubic yard dragline dredge on Greenwood and Carson Creeks.

The Lords Consolidated mine was a lode gold mine consisting of a group of four claims totaling 72.47 acres three miles east of Diamond Springs.

The Losh mine was a slate mine located one-half mile north of Chili Bar. During the years 1890, 1921-24 and 1937, dimension slate (blackboards, table tops, paving stones, etc.) was produced from an open pit 50 feet deep and 40 feet wide.

On the South Fork of the American River, at the town of Lotus, was a gravel mining operation known as the Lotus Bar mine. During the 1930s the gravel was mined using power shovels and bulldozers. The placer gold was separated from the rest of the material by sending the gravel through several washing plants.

Three miles south of the town of El Dorado was a lode gold mine known as the Loveless mine. The deposit consisted of a one-foot vein of gold-bearing quartz with pockets of rich ore. It was active in 1914 and developed by a 160-foot crosscut adit, 300-foot drift and a 90-foot shaft.

The Lucero mine was a lode gold mine on the western branch of the Mother Lode one mile southwest of Georgetown.

The Lucinda mine was a lode gold mine three miles west of Grizzly Flat. It was active prior to 1896 when its six-inch to three-foot wide vein of gold-bearing quartz was developed by a 50-foot vertical shaft and a 150-foot crosscut adit.

The Lucky Boy mine was a lode gold claim on the Mother Lode, three miles southeast of the town of El Dorado.

The Lucky Five mine was a lode gold claim on the west branch of the Mother Lode near Spanish Dry Diggings.

Two miles south of the townsite of El Dorado was the Lucky Jack mine, another lode gold mine. The deposit consisted of a series of gold-bearing quartz veins that were developed by several shallow shafts. The ore was treated on-site in a two-stamp mill.

The Lucky Marion (Shepard) mine was a lode gold mine located on 20 acres of the western branch of the Mother Lode one mile northwest of Greenwood. It was first active in 1896-97 and again in 1901, when it produced $3,860 in gold. From 1897 until September 1899 it was shut down on account of litigation. The “high-grade” gold-bearing quartz vein, 18 to 24 inches in width, was developed by a 112-foot inclined shaft with several drifts at the 100-foot level. The ore was treated in a 20-stamp mill.

The Lucky Star Consolidated mine was a group of claims on 14.84 acres of the Mother Lode one-half mile north of Placerville.

The Lucky Strike mine was a lode gold claim two miles southeast of Placerville.

A second Lucky Strike mine was also a lode gold claim just north of Greenwood on the western branch of the Mother Lode.

The Lukens mine was a lode gold mine three miles southwest of the town of Cool. The deposit consisted of a narrow vein of high grade ore that was developed and worked around 1923 through two shafts, one 130 feet and the other 90 feet in depth, connected by a 150-foot drift.

The Lyon mine was a placer gold, drift mine, one mile southeast of Smith’s Flat and two miles east of Placerville. As at the Linden Mine, a portion of the Deep Blue Lead channel was worked, however, here it was by two shafts and drifts. It was active prior to 1900 with a total output of $1,400,000.

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

The Madelina, Madeline and Magdalena mines were three copper mines five miles south of Diamond Springs. The were operated together, prior to 1900, under the name Blue Cat mine. Since this was on the Mother Lode, the Madelina was also a lode gold mine. It was worked by a cross-cut tunnel 90 feet into the vein, and a drift along the foot-wall 100 feet, connected by a raise 105 feet to the surface.

Two miles northwest of Garden Valley was a lode gold mine known as the Madrona mine. It was first active prior to 1894 when a vein of gold-bearing quartz was developed by a 40-foot shaft. Later maps show the Madrone group at this location operating claims for both lode and placer gold on and near the east branch of the Mother Lode.

The Maginess Group operated a lode gold mine near Nashville on the Mother Lode.

The Malone mine was a placer gold mine on 5.22 acres one mile west of Indian Diggings.

The Maltby mine was a lode gold mine on 20.62 acres of the west branch of the Mother Lode, one and one-half miles southeast of Greenwood and just north of the Argonaut mine. During the 1930s the deposit was prospected through an adit of unknown length.

The Mameluke (Mameluke Hill) mine was a seam gold mine located one mile north of Georgetown on 16.68 acres of the east branch of the Mother Lode. It was active prior to 1880 with a total output of not less than two million dollars in gold. It contained coarse gold that was recovered from alluvium and thin seams of quartz in slate.

The Mammoth (Mammoth No. 1 and No. 2) mine was a lode gold mine one mile northwest of Deer Valley School, which was located on Deer Valley Road just to the north of the Jayhawk Cemetery. This 22.23 acre mine was opened in 1860 when a pocket of rich quartz produced some $10,000 in gold. The mine was effectively idle until 1934 when the tailings dump was reworked. The deposit consisted of a five foot wide vein of gold-bearing quartz and a second vein three to four feet wide. It was developed by a 75-foot crosscut adit and a 120-foot drift. The ore, once removed, was treated in a ten-stamp mill.

The Mammoth Bar River mine was actually two placer gold mines consisting of 38.41 acres two miles north of Cool on the Middle Fork of the American River.

The Manhattan Location of the Perkins Consolidated mine was a lode gold mine consisting of 61.89 acres of land one and one-half miles northwest of Volcanoville very near the Middle Fork of the American River.

The Manhattan Consolidated (Manhattan-California) mine was a lode gold mine on 76,86 acres of the Mother Lode two miles northeast of Nashville. This deposit was active prior to 1915 and further prospected in 1935, 1947 and 1952. It was developed by a 400-foot shaft.

The Manzanita mine was a lode gold mine on 16.82 acres of the Mother Lode, one mile south of Kelsey. It was active in 1918.

The Manzanita Queen Consolidated mine was a lode gold mine one-half mile southeast of Diamond Springs on 82.21 acres. It was an extension of the Griffith Consolidated Mine.

The Maple Leaf (Blakely) mine was a placer gold mine located two miles west of Camino near Five Mile House. Originally active in the 1880’s, it was reopened from 1932 to 1935 when it was operated as a relief project, employing 100 men. During this period, about $20,000 in gold was produced by hydraulicking and sluicing.

The Marble Valley (Schwalin) mine was a large limestone mine two miles east of Clarksville in Marble Valley. This deposit, which contained 98.80 percent pure calcium carbonate, was originally quarried and then burned in a nearby vertical kiln for the cement industry. Much later, the limestone was mined by the El Dorado Limestone Company and later Gallo Glass Company. The total extent of the deposit is unknown but the limestone outcrops for a distance of nearly 4000 feet, with a width from less than 100 feet to 200 feet. It was developed by two open quarries, one of which has filled with water. The mine is closed and the land is being converted to subdivision with custom home lots.

Just to the southeast of the Marble Valley limestone mine was a lode gold mine also know as the Marble Valley mine. It consisted of about 15 acres of land.

The Marcelais mine was a lode gold mine three miles east of Shingle Springs and south of Mother Lode Drive.

The Margareth mine was a lode gold mine two and one-half miles northeast of Nashville on 20 acres of the Mother Lode.

One mile east of Diamond Springs was the Marguerite mine, a lode gold mine on 18.92 acres of the Mother Lode. Here, three parallel veins of gold-bearing quartz were developed by a 300-foot vertical shaft, 200-foot adit and 1200 feet of drifts.

The Marigold mine was a lode gold mine one half mile northwest of Garden Valley on the west branch of the Mother Lode.

The Marshall group worked a lode gold claim about three miles north of Grizzly Flat and north of the North Fork of the Cosumnes River.

The Marshall and Estes placer gold mine was on 50 acres near Caldor, the eastern terminus of the California Door Company (Caldor) railroad, which is about six miles east of Grizzly Flat. The western terminus of the railroad was in Diamond Springs.

The Martha L mine was a lode gold mine two and one-half miles northeast of Cool and just south of the Middle Fork of the American River. It was worked together with two other mines, the three consisting of a total of 51.62 acres.

The Martin mine was an isolated lode gold mine, three and one-half miles northeast of Garden Valley near Bear Creek.

The Martin Arenz mine was a placer gold claim on ten acres two miles southwest of Rescue, adjacent to Deer Creek.

The Martinez (Hillside group) mine was a lode gold mine consisting of five different mines on 96.290 acres near Martinez Creek (a tributary of the Cosumnes River), south of the Union Mine some four and one-half miles southeast of the townsite of El Dorado. The mine was operated by the Hillside Gold Mining Company in 1915. It was again worked around 1926 when an adit was run 900 feet into the lower part of the hill and and later in the early 1930s. In 1937 some development work was done in the lower workings of the mine, with some ore production. The deposit consisted of a series of parallel gold-bearing quartz veins and was developed by a 600-foot adit driven west with numerous raises and drifts. South of this adit is another 600-foot crosscut adit and some older workings. The ore was treated on-site by a five-stamp mill.

Another Martinez mine was a manganese mine three miles southeast of the townsite of El Dorado, near the Martinez gold mine. Here, the operator of the mine, the Martinez Gold Mines Company, developed two lenses containing rhodonite and black manganese oxide.

The Maryland mine was a lode gold mine on 19.24 acres directly south of Placerville on the Mother Lode.

The Massinni mine was a placer mine on 20 acres one mile west of Newtown.
One mile south of Diamond Springs was the Mathenas Creek (Schneider) Mine. A lode gold mine, it was active between 1888 and 1894 when a two to eight foot vein of gold-bearing quartz was developed by 100 and 300-foot adits. The ore was treated in a Huntington mill.

On the American River near Coloma a Lotus resident, E. B. Matherly, operated a suction dredge called the Matherly Dredge, from 1947 to 1952.

Mauk and Kendall operated a placer gold mine on 180 acres about five miles east of Grizzly Flat near Dogtown Creek.

The Mauner mine was a placer gold mine on 30 acres one half mile northwest of Greenwood.

The May Morton mine was a placer gold mine on 20 acres two miles south of Smith Flat.

At an unknown area or areas in El Dorado County J.W.S. Butler, from Sacramento, operated the McCoy and Butler Dredge, a dry land dredge, in 1941.

Two miles north of the town of Coloma was a chromite mine known as the McCurdy mine. In 1918 200 tons of ore containing 36 percent chromite was produced. The deposit consisted of two groups of chromite lenses in serpentine and talc that were developed by both open cuts and a 45-foot shaft.

The McDonald and Buys mine was a chromite mine one mile south of Four Corners (the intersection of Gold Hill Road and Lotus Road). This mine was also active in 1918 when 350 tons of ore was produced. The pods of chromite at this location were developed by three shafts and an open pit.

The McDonald and Channel mine was a placer gold mine on 50 acres just southeast of Placerville.

The McDowell and Wiltshire mining company operated two locations (the McDowell location and the Wiltshire location) one mile northeast of Nashville on the Mother Lode.

Near Henry’s Diggings, in the south part of our county, was a placer gold, drift mine known as the McKim Mine. It was prospected in 1926 when a 100-foot adit and 20- foot raise were driven.

The McKinley mine was a lode gold mine just to the west of Spanish Dry Diggings on the west branch of the Mother Lode.

The McKinley Goldstandard mine was a lode gold mine on 19.18 acres one half mile north of Placerville on the Mother Lode.

The McLellan mine was a placer gold mine on 60 acres one and one-half mile southeast of Salmon Falls.

The McNulty (Golden Gate, Oakland) Mine was a lode gold mine on the Mother Lode three miles south of the townsite of El Dorado. Here a six foot wide vein of gold-bearing quartz was developed by a 400-foot shaft, 450-foot crosscut adit and a 450-foot winze sunk from the adit. The ore was treated in a ten-stamp mill.

Two gentlemen from Weaverville, Messrs McQueen and Downing, operated a dragline dredge on Carson creek in 1940.

In 1949, near Cherokee Bar on the American River, the Mead Company, from San Francisco, operated a dragline dredge.

The Meder mine was a lode gold mine consisting of 19.09 acres adjacent to Green Valley Road at the north end of today’s Cameron Park. It also shows up in some records as a placer gold mine at this same location.

Another Meder mine was a lode gold mine consisting of 18.18 acres two miles southeast of Shingle Springs.

The Melton Group operated a lodge gold mine two miles northeast of Grizzly Flat.

The Mexican Gold mine was a lode gold mine on 20 acres one and one-half miles southeast of Fair Play.

The Michael B. Ryan mine was a 20 acre lode gold claim two miles southeast of Shingle Springs.

The Michael Sweeney mine was a placer gold mine on 80 acres one and one-half miles south of Coloma in the Gold Hill area.

The Michigan mine was a placer gold mine consisting of 120 acres two miles east of Fair Play in Slug Gulch.

The Mierson Group operated several gold mines one-half mile northwest of Placerville on the Mother Lode. Totaling 53.43 acres they were called the Vitmer location, Wellington location, Sherman location and Grant location.

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

The Miller mine was a chromite mine located one and one-half miles northwest of the town of Clarksville, near the Walker and Joerger mines. The deposit consisted of small amounts of layered chromite, however, there are no separate production records for this mine, since ore from these three mines was probably combined.

Also on the Mother Lode, two miles south of Placerville, was another Miller mine, the Miller (Ribbon Rock) mine. It was active from 1888 to 1894 and again in 1900. A ribbon-like vein of gold- bearing quartz, varying in width from two to five feet was developed by a 400-foot inclined shaft.

A third and fourth Miller mine were placer gold mines. One was near the gold rush town of Salmon Falls, the other was on the South Fork of the American River about six miles upriver from the City of Folsom. Both mines are now under Folsom Lake.

The Milo S. Jeffers mine was a placer gold claim of 160 acres two miles southeast of Smith Flat.

The Minerva mine was a 8.762 acre lode gold mine on the Mother Lode two miles south of the town of El Dorado.

The Minnehaha mine was a 7.78 acre lode gold mine on the Mother Lode three miles south of the town of El Dorado. In 1900 eight men were employed and the ore was being crushed with a four-stamp mill.

The Mississippi mine was a placer gold, drift mine one and one-half miles east of Volcanoville. It was active around 1894 when an ancient river channel deposit was developed by a 240-foot adit.

The Missouri mine was a 45.05 acre placer gold mine two mile east of Volcanoville in Missouri Canyon.

The Mitchell mine was a lode gold mine located two miles northwest of Pine Hill (Pine Hill is the hill at the north end of Cameron Park – elevation around 2000 feet). A 150-foot adit was used to develop a four to ten-foot wide vein of gold-bearing quartz.

The Mocettini mine was a manganese mine located two and one-half miles east of Latrobe. The deposit, which was developed by open cut, contained greenstone stained with black manganese and iron oxides.

The Mohawk mine was a lode gold claim three miles south the the town of El Dorado on the Mother Lode. It was worked together with three other mines, all three totaling 61.63 acres.

The Molkey mine was a hydraulic mine one mile southeast of Fair Play. An ancient river channel containing a lot of clay was mined for its gold.

The Molybdenite Group operated a lode gold claim three miles northeast of Fair Play.

The Monarch Consolidated mine was a 137.38 acre lode gold mine on the Mother Lode consisting of a group of seven claims one-half mile east of Nashville.

The Monarch-Sugar Loaf mine was an isolated lode gold mine located three miles northwest of the town of Nashville on about 20 acres. Originally worked in the 1850s, it was again active between 1870 and 1907 when the ore was treated in a ten stamp mill. Some prospecting was done in the 1930’s and during 1953 and ’54, when the mine was leased to J. H. Wren and Associates of Sacramento, some rehabilitation work was done. Early in 1955 George Ross and Associates leased the mine and took some high-grade ore from small pockets in the deposit of gold-bearing quartz. Near the surface the gold is in small but rich ore shoots. Deeper, the gold, accompanied by sulfides, pyrite and galena (lead ore), was found in areas where the vein swelled, changed in direction or functioned with small stringers. The deposit was originally developed by open cuts and shallow shafts over a surface distance of some 2000 feet. In 1955 three men worked the center of the deposit through a 70-foot crosscut adit, treating the mined ore by hand-sorting, hand-mortaring (crushing) and amalgamation (combining gold with mercury for later separation).

The Monitor mine was a lode gold mine on 17.258 acres of the Mother Lode just south of Nashville. It was worked through a shaft 50 feet deep with a 50-foot drift at the bottom. In 1900 the rock was bringing $6 per ton.

Just north of the town of Nashville and just east of the Cosumnes River, was the Montezuma-Apex and Montezuma Extension mines. There are pages and pages of records on this very large mine, which is only summarized here:
These lode gold mines on the Mother Lode were originally worked at shallow depths during the early days of the gold rush and even up until 1871. They were again worked from 1890 to 1907 and later in 1914. There was some recorded output of ore during the years from 1920 until 1928. In 1931 the mines were reopened by Nashville Mines, Ltd., who were succeeded by the Montezuma-Apex Mining Company in 1933. Up until 1939 they operated it and the Nashville (Havillah) mine some 1000 feet to the south. The Montezuma-Apex Mine and the extension, were developed by a 1540-foot inclined shaft and an older 360-foot inclined shaft some 300 feet to the north. In the old workings of the mine, an ore body eight to 20 feet wide was stoped for a length of 250 feet down to the 120-foot level. In the newer workings a 150-foot long ore shoot was mined between the 800 and 1000-foot levels around the year 1914 by the California Exploration Company which leased the mine. In 1932 the shaft was deepened and another ore shoot was 570 feet long by four to eight feet wide was worked at the 1200-foot level. Little mining was done below the depth of 1225 feet since from there the ore decreased in grade. At one point, the 1500-foot level was extended 1050 feet to the south under the Nashville Mine in an attempt to encounter the Nashville (Havillah) vein. The ore was treated in a ten-stamp mill that was replaced in 1933 with a 240-ton mill equipped with two Marcy ball mills, hydraulic traps, Wilfely tables and a ten-cell floatation unit which concentrated the gold.

Two miles northeast of Newtown was the Mooney mine, a placer gold, drift mine. It was only active from 1894-96.

The Mooney Flat mine was a placer gold mine on 40 acres one mile south of Cool, near Knickerbocker Creek.

The Morey (Humbug) mine was a lode gold mine one mile west of Grizzly Flat. It was active intermittently from 1919-44. Small veins of gold-bearing quartz contained small deposits of high-grade ore, which was removed by sinking numerous shallow shafts. The ore was treated in a small mill on the property.

Four miles northwest of the town of Rescue was the Mormon Hill mine, a lode gold mine. It was active in 1934 and from 1938-41. A two to three foot wide vein of gold-bearing quartz was developed by a 110-foot inclined shaft with 80 feet of drifts on the 100-foot level. The ore was treated in a five-stamp mill.

The Morning Star was a group of seam gold mines in a seam belt, one mile northeast of Georgetown. The mines were active around 1926 when about $75,000 in gold was recovered.

The Morris Consolidated mine was a 640 acre placer gold mine one mile east of Volcanoville.

Three miles east of Latrobe, on the west side of a large serpentine body, was a lode gold mine known as the Morse mine. All that is know is that it was active prior to 1894.

The Mount Gregory mine was a hydraulic mine three miles east of Volcanoville. It was active in 1896 and 1912 when a 20 to 25-foot bank with eight feet of cemented gravel was mined.

The Mount Hope mine was a 28.76 acre lode gold claim three miles north of Grizzly Flat on the north side of the North Fork of the Cosumnes River. It was active prior to 1888 when a vein of gold-bearing quartz was developed by a 1000-foot adit and 100 and 200-foot shafts. The ore was treated in a ten-stamp mill.

A second Mount Hope mine was a placer gold claim one mile north of Volcanoville.

A third Mount Hope mine was a 20.64 acre lode gold mine two miles north of Garden Valley on the east branch of the Mother Lode.

Near the Morey mine, one mile west of Grizzly Flat, was the Mount Pleasant mine, a lode gold mine on 50.08 acres. The principal source of gold in the Grizzly Flat district, it was first worked in 1851, during the early days of the Gold Rush. From 1874 to 1914 some $1,046,748 worth of gold was removed. After 1914 only some small prospecting was done on the property and nothing was apparently done after 1941. The deposit consists of a belt of nearly parallel quartz veins around 300 feet wide. Within the quartz was found free gold, pyrite, galena and other ores. The gold alone, between the years 1881 and 1887, averaged $14 per ton. One of the larger veins, the Earle vein, was developed by a 1065-foot shaft with levels at 100-foot intervals. Drifts, of which there are 9000 feet, range from 300 to 1300 feet in length, with most of the work above the 850-foot level. There are also two other shafts 300 to 600 feet deep. The ore was treated in a ten-stamp mill that burned down in 1926.

The Mountain Qual mine was an 18.03 acre lode gold mine three miles northeast of Fair Play on the north side of the Middle Fork of the Cosumnes River. It was worked together with three other miles.

The Mulvey Point mine was an 80 acre placer gold mine two miles north of Georgetown near Bottle Hill.

The Muntz mine was a lode gold mine on the west branch of the Mother Lode three miles northwest of Greenwood near the Middle Fork of the American River.

The Murderer’s Bar mine was a placer gold mine on 39.53 acres two miles north of Cool on the Middle Fork of the American River.

Two miles to the southeast of Latrobe was a chromite mine known as the Murphy mine. During World War I, some 3000 tons of ore from this deposit was milled. In 1942, during World War II, the Volo Mining Company removed another 3000 tons of ore. During the first half of 1953 Edward Hadsel and Jerry Grant sub-leased the mine from the El Dorado Chrome Company and for a few months, produced about 100 tons of 14 percent chromite ore per day, using a crew of eight people. The property was developed by two open pits, the larger one being 200 feet long, 10 to 30 feet wide and 25 feet deep at the northern end. The ore was drilled with jack-hammers and then trucked 16 miles to the El Dorado Chrome Company mill near the Church gold mine (Union mine), south of the townsite of El Dorado.

A second Murphy mine was a placer gold mine on the South Fork of the American River about six miles down river from Lotus.

The Murray mine was a 20 acres placer gold mine one-half mile west of Indian Diggings.

One mile west of Volcanoville, on Buckeye Point, was a placer gold, drift mine known as the Murzo (Brass) mine. It was active around 1894 when a 150-foot adit was driven into the ancient gravel deposit which lay on slate bedrock.

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Cafe Luna – Placerville

“All four elements were happening in equal measure – the cuisine, the wine, the service, and the overall ambience. It taught me that dining could happen at a spiritual level.”
Charlie Trotter

Café Luna
A group of us were invited to dinner at Café Luna, 451 Main St., Suite 8, in Placerville (Creekside Place). The occasion was to discuss May as zinfandel month with Paul Bush, owner and winemaker at Madroña Vineyards.

I arrived a bit early and talked with General Manager Gary J. Herrera, who was busily getting the place ready for dinner, while chef David Van-Buskirk was in the kitchen doing the same thing.

“You know we have been open for 17 years,” said Herrera. “And remember, we ran the Vineyard House in Coloma for 15 years.”

I was surprised, everything seems like yesterday. But I did remember the Vineyard House and the chicken and dumplings that were so good.

Café Luna specializes in changing menus featuring different meats, seafood, pastas and vegetarian items that are in season and fresh, along with its famous “Hot-Head” (adventures in heat and chiles) specials.

We ordered from the Spring 2012 menu and decided to try different things and share so we could experience a number of dishes with the Hillside and Signature zinfandels from Madroña. We started out with baked brie that came with house-made chutney, roasted heads of garlic and toast, along with some great sautéed mushrooms.

Then we ordered the following: butternut squash and mushroom lasagna — roasted butternut squash, pan-sautéed mushrooms, basil and mozzarella, ricotta and Parmesan cheeses layered with pasta sheets, baked until golden and bubbly and topped with toasted amaretti crumbs and herbs; lamb shanks — Australian-raised lamb shank dry-marinated in aromatic spices, slow braised with red wine, tomatoes and herbs until falling-off-the-bone tender, then sprinkled with a traditional “gremolata” made with fresh lemon zest, garlic and parsley; rib-eye steak — a 14 ounce rib eye, marinated in extra virgin olive oil and garlic, flame-broiled to your specification, and topped with a drizzle of roasted garlic/Parmesan oil; and pork osso bucco — meaty pork shanks, sautéed and simmered in a rich tomato and California zinfandel wine broth until falling off the bone tender, topped with a fresh gremolata and served with polenta (or mashed potatoes). And, the meals came with fresh salad and mixed fresh (and perfectly cooked) vegetables.

This is what you call dining, not eating, but dining. The food was all absolutely wonderful and we shared dishes and tested all the wines, giving our comments to the winemaker.

I was really full, but do remember that they ordered two desserts, one of which was a chocolate puddle cake that was decadent. I had a couple of bites but I really couldn’t even finish my dinner, let alone have dessert.

That is just a sample of the fantastic food that is served at Café Luna and the menu lists a lot more. And, it is served in wonderful deep plates in a delightful atmosphere where people are obviously enjoying their food (it was a Thursday evening and the place was full). And, if you have a special diet, they will do their best to adjust the dish for you.

They have 150 wines on their wine list with over 20 available by the glass. And, the menu lists a recommended wine with each dish.

I don’t know anything more to say about the ambiance, the fantastic food and wonderful service. If you are not one of their many regulars, you really should give them a try.

Café Luna is open Tuesday through Thursday from 5 until 9 p.m. and on Friday and Saturday from 5 until 9:30 p.m. I would recommend reservations — call 530-642-8669.

If you would like to read their menu, get recipes and enjoy their wonderful sense of humor in their monthly newsletter “Rants and Raves,” go to cafelunatics.blogspot.com. It is a lot of fun and full of good information.