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Author: Subject: ramping up copper mining at el arco
David K
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[*] posted on 5-18-2021 at 09:59 AM


Good morning Ric, I know you are the rock guy in the room and your knowledge on them is not in dispute. I am the book guy, and I only want to see something that says copper was mined in El Arco in the 1930s. So far, only gold is mentioned. There was an American mine manager living in El Arco... as I recall from reading my books. The first mention of El Arco switching from mining gold to mining copper (I recall) is in Arnold Senterfitt's Airports of Baja California (1972 edition).

In the 1954 travel adventure book, 'Bouncing Down to Baja' by Bill and Orv Wortman, they say: "The El Arco area is rich in mineral deposits, including gold, silver, and copper... he obtained sixty or seventy grams of gold from a ton of ore." (approx. 2 ounces)





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[*] posted on 5-19-2021 at 08:58 AM
From 1943: Land Where Time Stands Still by Max Miller


A book about traveling by land from San Diego to Cape San Lucas, in the Fall of 1941, published in 1943.

On page 58, last paragraph:
"The Hardings used to have an airplane, when the gold mine in El Arco was going well."







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[*] posted on 5-19-2021 at 09:50 AM


you've sold the rest of us but im afraid you're gonna have to arm wrestle Ric! :coolup:



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David K
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[*] posted on 5-19-2021 at 11:39 AM


Ric may be correct, but not one book yet seen mentions El Arco was anything other than a gold mine. I agree with Ric about how books copy info from other books. It happened with mission books and that is why I was motivated to write my book to provide the factual history that wasn't yet published in English or at all, in a single source. I will continue to search books for mention of the element that El Arco mined.



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[*] posted on 5-19-2021 at 12:08 PM


Quote: Originally posted by David K  
A book about traveling by land from San Diego to Cape San Lucas, in the Fall of 1941, published in 1943.

On page 58, last paragraph:
"The Hardings used to have an airplane, when the gold mine in El Arco was going well."





also Margaret Brown Baldwin speaks of staying at a wealthy gentleman's house who owned a GOLD mine at El Arco.......pretty sure Margaret's dad new something about mining!
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[*] posted on 5-19-2021 at 12:46 PM


The old time miners were going after lode (vein) minerals. The 1960s-onward interest in el arco area is porphyry deposits. Small scale underground mining vs open pit/strip mining.

The old mines in el arco area were spread out over a large area,… suspect the miners went after different minerals based on location. The area is not homogeneous, different mines probably went after different minerals, and perhaps multiple minerals in each mine.




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David K
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[*] posted on 5-19-2021 at 01:41 PM


A famous "bait and switch" mine center might be Las Flores (San Juan Mine, south of L.A. Bay?

Books called it a 'silver mine'... but gold seems to have been the #1 element processed there? Yes, they both often come out of the same holes in the earth... Maybe for taxation reasons, calling it a silver mine was a better business move?




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[*] posted on 5-19-2021 at 02:36 PM


LOL, yes Ric... but lately, Nomad has been pretty lackluster without fresh trip reports... Blanca's trip up to Rancho San Francisco was nice to see.

I am not debating what was mined in El Arco, but simply listing the books that name the mineral mined... and so far, it is gold back then with copper making it a rebirth of the town 50 years ago... only the rebirth never happened and now the town is totally abandoned. Just a cattle ranch is set up there.

What books or documents do you have that say copper was mined there in the 1930s? Let's keep looking at what history says and if it is wrong (like with the missions) let's correct it!




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[*] posted on 5-19-2021 at 02:43 PM


Only historians can change the past.



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[*] posted on 5-19-2021 at 02:50 PM
1958: Solo Below by Don A. Hue


Page 35:
"El Arco is a small dusty mining town located along the rim and overlooking an arroyo where extensive gold mining operations are being carried on."





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[*] posted on 5-19-2021 at 03:00 PM


Be there doubloons in El Arco? Arr......





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[*] posted on 5-19-2021 at 03:08 PM


From “ Geophysical exploration of the El Arco- Calmalli mining district, Baja California, Mexico” by Ram6n Farias Garcia, Univ of AZ MS Thesis….

“Production in the El Arco-Calmalli district began in 1883 when
gold placers were discovered. During the first half of the present [20th] cen­tury several small mines in the northwestern portion of the district, such as the Calmalli and Don Carlos mines, were developed and worked for gold and copper and were still operating at the beginning of the 1930's. El Arco was also an important mine worked for gold and copper between 1930 and 1940. Other small mines of lesser importance within the dis­trict are the Otilla, Nogales, El Tigre, and El Aguila, but not all of
these prospects were formally worked. A large amount of placer activity also existed near the streams of Pozo Aleman at the center of the district.

The El Arco-Calmalli district became important in 1968 when IndustrialMineraMexico,S.A., formerlyAsarcoMexicana,S.A.,be­gan a geological and geophysical reconnaissance of the district followed by a drilling program. This exploration led to the discovery of the El Arco porphyry copper deposit.”




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[*] posted on 5-19-2021 at 03:22 PM
Gold & Copper: Hardly Any Fences by John Hilton


Hardly Any Fences, Baja California in 1933-1959, by John W. Hilton. Published in 1977 as #38 of the Dawson Baja California Travels Series.

Very interesting! >>>







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[*] posted on 5-20-2021 at 09:37 AM


The answer to the question of whether El Arco was a "gold mining town" or a "copper / gold mining town" is really just a question of semantics. They mined gold there, so it was a gold mining town. The gold that was found at El Arco, from all indications, was a fringe benefit of mining a lot of copper ore, but it was still gold.

To get an answer as to what exactly they were mining at El Arco in the 1920's-1930's would require finding records of copper and gold production that were kept by the Federal government of Mexico, for tax purposes. Of course, in 1910 the Federal government of Mexico was overthrown in a revolution. Thus, there might be a gap in the records from 1910-1920, but after that records should be available. However, traveling to Mexico city and digging though old tax records to figure out what they were mining at El Arco is not high on my list of priorities.

[Edited on 5-20-2021 by bajaric]
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[*] posted on 5-20-2021 at 12:16 PM


Of course...
I look forward to going prospecting with you someday!
There is still a lot of gold (or copper) in them thar hills!!




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[*] posted on 5-21-2021 at 07:07 AM


OK amigo! Some day when the border crossing situation improves for us luddites that cross in the regular lanes maybe we can do a little exploration trip. There is not much gold left laying around that can be easily recovered, and such areas tend to be off limits, but exploring the old mining districts it is a great excuse to get off the beaten track and see some parts of Baja that few people ever visit.

I ran across a reference to an article that would cast some light on El Arco, but have not been able to find it:

El Arco, Zarate and Munoz 1925

If someone on here with access to a research library system could try and find that article somewhere it would be cool, I don't have access to the academic research system.



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[*] posted on 5-21-2021 at 08:52 AM
Seeking Papers on El Arco Mine History:


1) https://www.mindat.org/loc-191823.html

El Arco Mine, El Arco, Ensenada Municipality, Baja California, Mexico
Gold

<photo of gold nugget>

Placer gold nugget collected at the El Arco site. Formerly of the William Larson collection.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ ----------
2) https://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.83...

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ -----------
3) https://books.google.com/books?id=1xFyRVrXxQIC




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[*] posted on 5-21-2021 at 11:21 AM


Just have to join in this!

Years ago we explored Pozo Aleman and Calmalli. We found dry washers in some of the buildings and a rocker in the same area. There were the dug outs under a cliff wall with blackened wall from fires. The rocker and dry washers are used for gold mining as we use similar items in our area in old placer diggings (ancient stream beds). I had photos, but several computer changes has rendered the photos gone.

We have 2 dry washers and the bellows is powered by a lawn mower engine, but some are human powered. We have recovered quite a bit of gold from the Mojave and other desert areas. Sure learned a lot about the trials of the old miners....lots of work.

Perhaps David can find his photos as they were sent to him (storage area with several dry washers).

https://www.goldrushnuggets.com/robousbygomi.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Drywasher
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[*] posted on 5-21-2021 at 11:37 AM


Quote: Originally posted by Jack Swords  
Just have to join in this!

Years ago we explored Pozo Aleman and Calmalli. We found dry washers in some of the buildings and a rocker in the same area. There were the dug outs under a cliff wall with blackened wall from fires. The rocker and dry washers are used for gold mining as we use similar items in our area in old placer diggings (ancient stream beds). I had photos, but several computer changes has rendered the photos gone.

We have 2 dry washers and the bellows is powered by a lawn mower engine, but some are human powered. We have recovered quite a bit of gold from the Mojave and other desert areas. Sure learned a lot about the trials of the old miners....lots of work.

Perhaps David can find his photos as they were sent to him (storage area with several dry washers).

https://www.goldrushnuggets.com/robousbygomi.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Drywasher



Yes Jack... all your photos of historic locations are saved on my website. Here is your section: http://www.vivabaja.com/swords/

Pozo Aleman dry washer: http://www.vivabaja.com/swords/page3.html




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[*] posted on 5-21-2021 at 12:20 PM


Fantastic David, you must have a great filing system to keep track of so many photos. Thanks.

The dry washers and rockers are used for gold mining in areas with little water. We were surprised to find them there, they were obviously well used.
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