Lost Mines/Digs

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Space Cowboy
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Lost Mines/Digs

Post by Space Cowboy » Fri Jan 17, 2014 6:24 am

I've found a series of very serious digs and perhaps collapsed mines that don't appear on the USGS topography map. I'm interested in finding the claim markers. Since there is no signs of roads or anything else around these things, I'm thinking they must be pretty old. What were the parameters of a claim at the turn of the last century? What should I be looking for? It seems I remember something about building monuments with a can or Mason jar with a copy of the recorded claim. Is there a formula for that? Where would you find old claims that had been filed? The county seat? What department would be the most likely to be the one to have those records if they still exist?

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Re: Lost Mines/Digs

Post by D T » Fri Jan 17, 2014 8:14 am

Look for carins,with prince albert cans,that was typical in the day

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Re: Lost Mines/Digs

Post by Space Cowboy » Sat Jan 18, 2014 5:27 am

Thanks, DT. We found a lone metal fence post that I assume was a corner marker, but it was some distance from the mines themselves. How much area did a claim mark off? Was it a perfect square, or could it be stretched out. We found a single tin can near the biggest dig/mine, couldn't find anything else. Matching it up with 'The Mining Camps Speak', it would appear to be from some time around 1907 to the 1920's. I'm thinking the dig was for semi-precious stones. Would that Cairn have been put on a rise, or would it be near the mine itself?

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Re: Lost Mines/Digs

Post by D T » Sat Jan 18, 2014 8:33 am

Im about as far from an expert as you can get,but they would usualy build 4 stone carins,marking thier claim, and inside one of the carins would be the paperwork,almost always in a prince albert can or like you say,a glass jar

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Re: Lost Mines/Digs

Post by oroblanco » Tue Jul 01, 2014 9:31 pm

The USGS has been quietly erasing old mines, trails, springs, ruins, and caves from their topo maps. I would highly recommend getting OLD topo maps which usually show such features. The stated reason as to why these important geographic features are being erased is to "protect the resource" from us humans.

Also, I would highly recommend a visit to your state Bureau of Land Management office, where all the records of mining claims are kept. They can help you ID the old mining claims, and determine if they are still kept active or are open to claim. The BLM manages all mining claims on Federal lands, except Indian reservations which are a special case.

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