Rough-and-Ready District

Publication Info:
Gold Districts of California
Bulletin 193 California Division of Mines and Geology 1976
Table of Contents

Related: Where to Find Gold in California

Location and History
Rough-and-Ready is in western Nevada County about five miles west of Grass Valley. Placer mining began here during the gold rush. The town was founded in 1849 by the Rough and Ready military company led by Captain A. A. Townsend. He had once served under General Zachary Taylor, who was known as "Old Rough and Ready". Drift and hydraulic mining began in the late 1850s, and lode mining became important in the 1860s. There was considerable activity that lasted until about 1900. Some work was done in the district in the 1930s, and there has been minor prospecting since.

Geology and Ore Deposits
A north-trending belt of amphibolite one to two miles wide traverses the central portion of the district. Gabbro and diorite lie to the east and granodiorite to the north. Some orbicular gabbro is present. A west-trending Tertiary gravel channel of the Yuba River crosses the north portion of the district. A number of north-strking quartz veins occur chiefly in amphibolite. The veins are one to five feet thick and contain free gold with pyrite and other sulfides. Considerable high-grade ore was taken out. None of the veins has been developed to depths of more than 500 feet.

Mines Lode: Aleade (Kenosha) $500,000, Black Bear, California, Ironclad, Mystery, Niagara, Norman-die-Dulmaine $100,000, Osceola, Seven-Thirty, Vulcan-Grey Eagle.

Placer: Alta-California, Jenny Lind.

Lindgren, Waldemar, 1895, Smartsville folio, California: U.S. Geol. Survey Geol. Atlas of the U.S., folio 18, 6 pp.

Lindgren, Waldemar, 1911, Tertiary gravels of the Sierra Nevada: U.S. Geol. Survey Prof. Paper 73, pp. 120-124.

MacBoyle, Errol, 1919, Nevada County, Rough-and-Ready mining district: California Min. Bur. Rept. 16, pp . 54-57.

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