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Mohave County miner. (Mineral Park, A.T. [Ariz.]) 1882-1918, April 06, 1912, Image 1

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Persistent link: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn84024828/1912-04-06/ed-1/seq-1/

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VOL XXX
Potash Found in Mohave Desert
A large deposit of potash salts in the
Mohave Desert of southern California
has been reported by field men of the
United States Geological Survey and
the Bureau of Soils Analyses of the
brine in Borax or Searles Lake in San
Bernardino Connty show 078 per cnt
of potashKO and the amount of the
material available is known to be enor
mous The potash is believed to be in
a readily available form that is it
can be used as fertilizer without em
ploying any special reduction process--and
the climatic conditions of the area
in which the deposit occurs are especi
ally favorable to its separation and re
covery by solar evaporation
Borax Lake is ths last remaining
pocket of a great ancient lake which
lias almost dried up thus concentrat
ing a vast amount of saline minerals
Millions of tons of salt soda and bor
ax cover the surface of the lake and
deposits of soda and borax have been
worked but the development of the
potash in the lake deposits hal not
been considered until recently Cali
fornia capitalists are now figuring on
J he operation of the properly and the
potash output may form at least a most
profitable by product inasmuch as
there is great demand for the more
common minerals carried in the lake
brine
Borax Lake was visited jointly by
representatives of the Geological Sur
vey and of the Bureau of Soils who
took brine samples from six wells dis
tributed over the salt flat Analyses
of these samples have been raadej by
the cooperative laboratory at the Mac
kay School or Mines at Reno Nev
and show an average of 6 78 per cent
potassium oxide KO of the total salts
present in the brine These salts
amount to nearly 44 per cent of the
weight of the brine as it is pumped
from the wells Comparison of the re
sults indicates that the brines are
nearly uniform throughout the lake or
flat Existing data give reasonable
assurance that the brine saturated salt
body is at least GO feet thick and covers
an area of at least 11 square miles
Assuming the salt body to contain 25
per cent by volume of the brine the
total amount of potassium oxide is es
timated at over four million short tons
This estimate is believed to be very
conservative and the available ton
nage may well be expected to exceed
ten million tons which would supply
this country at the present rate of con
sumption of potash for 30 years At
any rate It appears that this locality
constitutes a very important source of
potash probably in readily available
commercial form Further it is entire
ly possible that Salt Wells Valley an
other wet dry lake across the low di
vide northwest of Borax Lake whicli
has been worked to some extent for
borax may also contain supplies of
potash Methods of separating potash
from brines are now under investiga
tion by the Bureau of Soils
Borax Lake accsrding to United
States Geological Survey is one of the
playas or intermittently wet and dry
lakes common throughout the arid re
gions of the West It lies between the
Argus and Slate ranges in the Mohave
Desert of southern California The
lake or Hat is about 10 miles long and
5 miles wide and has received the
drainage from the surrounding hills
for many thousands of years vast quan
tities of dissolved minerals being thus
concentrated in it The water has
been evaporated under the intense
heat of the long hot seasons but the
salts have remained so that for most
of the year in fact often throughout
the year the bed is a glistening plain
of white salts in attempting to cross
which under a brazen sun men have
lost their lives
The mirage plays its strange tricks
here and at the dryest places the
traveler can generally see what appears
to be a broad expanse of water cover
ing the bed a little way ahead always
a little distance off until he approach
es the shore of Borax Lake Then
when he looks behind him he sees the
water apparently covering the ground
over which he has just corau The
lake occupies a valley made by faults-
breaks and slips in the earths crusts
where a great area has been dropped
down Borings have been made thru
the mud and water underlying
the lake to a depth of some hundreds
of feet the deepest borings made
bringing up hot mud
A reconnaissance of the general re
gion was made by one of the geologists
of the United States Geological Survey
in 1900 and is described in the Surveys
Bulletin 200 now out of print Borax
Lake itself however was not visited
The lake is also shown on a map in
Water Supply Paper 224 of the Survey
Some Desert Watering Places in
Southeastern Californiaand Southwest
ern Nevada Its nearest railroad is
the Owenyo branch of the Southern
Pacilic running from Mohave past
Owens Lake Borax Lake is situated
about 20 miles from the station of
Searles on this railroad
Many useful and curious minerals
are found in the muds and other de
posits of Borax Lake including of
course borax Among them are gyp
sum glauberite carbonate and sul
phate of soda salt thenardite and
hanskite The last carries as much as
233 per cent of potassium equivalent
to 444 per cent of potassium chloride
The salts are not evenly distributed
over the surface of the lake Borax
was found plentifully over about 3
square miles common salt is every
where and sodium carbonate and sod
ium sulphate are widely distributed
One boring is said to have passed thru
28 feet of solid trona hydrous car
bonate of soda of great purity At
other places there is 25 feet of solid
mixed sulphate and carbonate of soda
with smaller quantites of other salts
Although the lake bed is dry most of
the time a few inches under the other
crust there is always water a bittern
heavily impregnated with salts
Several years ago an English com
pany attempted to work the soda de
posits on an extensive scale but tor
some reason the work has not been
pushed This company sunk a num
ber of wells casing them through the
soda deposits It was found that a
heavy stream of water could be pump
ed continuously without perceptibly
lowering the water level Potassium
chloride and sulphate the forms in
which potash salts are most likely to
be found in such deposits are among
the most soluable of salts and are like
ly to be mnch more generally diffused
than salts less easily soluable It is
presumed therefore that the entire
body of water and mud in the lake con
tains potash in a more or less uniform
degree However this condition lias
of course been modified by agencies
such as springs and streams that bring
in fresh water for the movement of
water through the lake has been slow
owing to the presence of the sand and
salts that fill tho basin
The Record of a Silver Camp
In view of the present satisfactory
conditions of the market for silver and
of the increased earnings which high
er prices mean to the silver producers
it mav be of interest to note in brief
the past history and future prospects
of the worlds premier silver camp
Cobalt
The first discoveries were made in
this region in 1903 the camp becoming
prominent in 1900 at which time there
had been twelve producing properties
developed Since then there have been
thirty five properties added to those
sending ores to the smelters and out
of the forty ssven that have been de
veloped there are now in the produc
ing list a total of thirty To these prop
erties may be added the prospects
which give good indications and upon
which money was expended in proving
their merits but which failed to reach
the producing stage
The production to the first of this
year has been placed at 120004189
ounces of fine silver having an approxi
mate value based on the average price
for silver during the period of produc
tion of 05000000 In 1904 when the
first shipments were made out of the
camp there were 159 tons prrduced
the next year this increased to 2300
tons reaching 33000 ton in 1910 The
production of last year while less in
Cotmtn
KINGMAN ARIZONA SATURDAY APRIL 6 1912
tonnage amounting to 25000 tons was
greater in value This was due to the
fact that mills arenow concentrating
the lower grade ores in the camp only
concentrates and high grade now be
ing shipped from a number of proper
ties The bullion output is also rapid
ly increasing as more of tho ore is re
duced at the properties and this will
no doubt have a marked effect on the
shipment record of the future
Other points of interest in connect
ion with the history of the camp are
given by the Cobalt Dally Nugget in a
recent issue as follows
The mining properties in Cobalt
have 8500000 invested in plants ma
chinery and buildings that is the act
ive shipping mines There was prob
ably an additional million dollars in
vested in prospects which did not de
velop into mines Of the 8500000 in
vested in plant machinery and build
ings 4200000 or nearly one half the
entire amount has been paid out of
earnings Within a shorl time the ad
ditional 43000008 will be written off
and the entire amount will have been
paid out of the profits of the mining
industry
The producing mines have distrib
uted in wages suppliesand other rain
ing expenses the total of 22783000
An additional 2000000 has been ex
pended in the properties which did not
make good
The mines have paid in dividends
the sum of 3G500000 The dividends
for 1912 will be nearly 10000000
Tney have paid the government in
taxes and royalties 25 40003 This
includes the royalties paid the T N
O railway commission which is really
a department of the government The
government has also received from the
sale of claims etc the sum of 1837
623
As to the future of the camp there
has been more or less discussion bot
there is apparently food reason to be
lieve that the high point of production
has hardly been reached with many
years to follow of heavy production
One engineer has stated that the ulti
mate amount will he over 250000000
ounces With a higher price for silver
this will mean more in the future than
it has in the past Each factional ad
vance means considerable to a heavy
producer of the metal Denver Min
ing Record
Churn Drills Used
In Miami Exploring
A Globe dispatch says Besides the
work of actual mining and under
ground development that is being car
ried on in the Miami district another
sign of the interest that is being taken
by outside capital is the exploration by
churn drilling Four companies are
conducting this kind of exploratory
work with six churn drills in con
tinuous operation The Miami Copper
company is working one drill north
east of the ore body in the vicinity of
No 3 shaft on ground whose surface
indications are considered very favor
able for the development of another
body of ore The New Keystone Cop
per company is operating one drill
northeast of the shaft The South
western Miami Development company
whose property lies to the southwest
of and adjoins that of the Live Oak
Development company is running two
drills and intends to add two more as
soon as possible The Lewisohns who
have an option on the Barney group
west of and adjoning the Live Oak
are operating two drills In addition
to these others may be added in the
near future The Miami mine con
tinues to produce at the rate of 3000
tons per day all of whicli is readily
handled by the concentrator which is
now in full operation In the sixth
unit of the concentrator F W Solo
mon the mill superintendent is ex
perimenting with the view of intro
aucing graded crushing to a greater
extent than is now practised and also
the roughing system An additional
water supply is being developed by air
lift wells on the companys ranch near
the pumping station at Burch about
four miles from the mine The work
of enlarging shaft No 2 at the Live
Oak mine from 2 to 3 compartments
is proceeding rapidly and is expected
to be finished this month The sur
face equipment is being erected at the
same time The Southwestern Miami
Development hole No 2 disclosed ore
at 945 feet Hole No 1 on the Barney
group under option to the Lewisohns
is 1175 feet deep Hole No 2 near the
Live Oak boundary is 130 feet deep
It was near this hole that a hole dril
led by the Barney Copper company is
reported to have cut ore at a depth of
500 feet penetrating it for a distance
of 20 feet before it became necessary
to abandon the hole on account of cav
ing
Developments at the Quartette
Carleson and Lund leasing at the
Quartette have reached a depth of
sixty feet and have a drift run to the
north at this level for a distance of
about twenty feet For the past two
weeks the leasers have been doing
dead work but yesterday they were
again opening into a buncli of good
looking rock with indications that an
other lead is coming in There are
several spots that give promise of giv
ing ood results when sufficiently de-
--
veloped
The Quartette mill has just finished
a run of twenty tons of 18 ore for
James Montgomery who has a lease
on the surface near the boarding house
Also a run of fourteen tons has be9n
made for W H McNett yielding a re
turn of about 14 to the ton
Within a few days the mill will start
on a test run of twenty five tons of low
grade oi e taken from the dump of the
Hoine and Ray lease on the Chief of
the Hills at Fourth of July Mountain
In addition to this there will be a run
made on the regular output of the
higher grade from the Chief of the
Hills
Ore is also being brought in from
the Fourth of July claim belonging to
the Quartette company and being
worked by Andy Tuomey
It was rumored on the streets this
that the Quartette mine was go
ing to shut down the first of the mjnth
This is denied by the management It
is proposed to suspend development
work for a few weeks but work will
continue in the mine There is a good
deal of timbering to be done in the
shaft and on the 1350 level This work
will occupy the attention of the work
ing force for a time- -Searchlight
Bulletin
You look a good while before you
find a belter medicine for coughs and
colds than Chamberlains Cough
Remedy It not only gives relief it
cures Try it when you have a cough
or cold and you are certain to be
pleased with the prompt cure which it
will effect For sale by all dealers
HfiT
Juttier
ttl09
mmmm
NO 28
Tellurium Ore Found
A Reno Nev dispatch says The
following wire just received from New
Pine Creek and corroborated by two
prospectors arrived at Reno
On the Wall and Williams lease on
the Sunset three miles south of the
Sunshine claim on a basalt porpby
ritic contact an open cut shows hun
dreds of tons of ore almost identical
with the rich tellurium rock of the
Anaconda at Cripple Creek
On the surface a shoot of this ore
had been uncovered by stripping and
trenching before the heavy weather
that was of absolute continuity for s x
hundred feet and with an average
width of two feet showing values that
ranged from five dollars to 5003 The
main shaft is down 00 feet on -this
property and the ore shoot has been
developed all the way At the 200
foot level drifts and cross cuts were
run out and are still being developed
Geo Brancroft of Denver the fa
mous metallurgical engineer and mir
ing expert sampled this ore carefully
late In the winter and the returns
have just been forwarded to the leas
ers The actual extent of the oie
body is not stated but in his report
Bancroft gives six ounces returns and
states that the values are in the tel
lurides
The vein being developed is four
feet in width at the present tme
The narrow seam of high grade ore
heretofore wks all that the lenseis
paid any attention to having had no
knowledge that tellurium obtained in
the perfect vein The discovery of
tellurium at this late day and
through the agency of this engineer
has created a sensation in the entire
district As a matter of fact the rich
telluride ores have been thrown on
the dump as waste
Samples shown here by mining men
returning from High Grade classifies
it hebraic graphic telluinn aiidf
shown as such under the glass it
being of a fineness never before re
corded Any of the rock gives off the
beautiful purple in reaction and thp
assajs with Cripple Creek flux giv s
returns that takes one hack to the
certificates of Strattons Indepe idence
when they showed six figures in sarr
pies
Why He Was Late
What made you so lateV
I met Smithson
Well that is no reason why you
should be an hour late getting -home
to supper
I know but I asked him how he
was feeling and he insisted on telling
mo about his stomach trouble
Did you tell him to take Chamber
Iains Tablets
Sure that is what he needs
Sold by all dealers
DRs
PRICES
CREAM
Baking Powder
Is a protection and guarantee
against alum wjhich is found in
the low priced baking powders
To be on the safe side when buying
baking powder examine the label and
take only a brand shown to be made
from Cream of Tartar

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