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Richard Roy Blake

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The perfect book for rockhounds, prospectors, geologists and fans of prospecting shows such as "Gold Rush," and "Prospectors," "The Complete American Gold Prospector's Handbook," gives the locations of all major and many minor natural gold occurrences in 47 of the 50 United States, instructions and forms for filing mining claims, prospecting techniques, some colorful anecdotes concerning lost treasure legends, Gold Rush histories from the Carolinas and Georgia to California, Colorado, Alaska, Nevada, South Dakota, Montana, New Mexico, Arizona, and others.  A perfect gift book for the prospector in the family during the prospecting "off-season,” as well as a handy field reference.


When the Jamestown colony landed in Virginia they did not find gold.  But there was gold in Virginia.  This is from the book’s account of gold mining in Virginia, and from one particular Virginia county. 




The gold bearing areas of Virginia are east of the Blue Ridge Mountains in a belt 15 to 25 miles wide and 200 miles long.  Fauquier, Fluvanna, Goochland, Orange and Spotsylvania Counties contain most of the important deposits.  The earliest reference to gold in the southern Piedmont was made by Thomas Jefferson who described a piece of ore containing 17 pennyweights of gold found in 1782 along the Rappahannock River.  Total production through 1959 is estimated at 167,558 ounces.




Placers were first worked in the county in 1832 and lodes, the principal one being at the Vaucluse Mine, 18 miles west of Fredericksburg, was discovered a few years later.  Total minimum production was about 50,000 ounces.  The ore shoots are found in a shear zone and are pod shaped lenses of quartz that carry concentrations of pyrite with which the gold is associated.  In addition to other sulfides the veins consist of quartz, sericite, ankerite, chlorite and calcite. 




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