Union Districts

Publication Info:
Nevada Mining Districts (Compiled Reports)
The Districts Described in This Section are from the following publications:

Mining Districts of Nevada - Nevada Bureau of Mines and Geology Report 47 (updated 1998); Placer Gold Deposits of Nevada - USGS Bulletin 1356 (1973)

Table of Contents

Union District (Eureka, Elko Counties)


County: Elko, Eureka

Discovered: 1886

Commodities: silver, lead, barite


Located in the vicinity of Union Summit in the Sulphur Springs Range about 45 miles north of Eureka. Most of this district is in Eureka County, but part of the district extends into Elko County.


Vanderburg, 1938b, p. 64; Roberts and others, 1967, p. 109; Smith, 1976, p. 167; Papke, 1984, table 3; LaPointe and others, 1991, p. 217

Union District (Nye County)


Other Names:

County: Elko

Discovered: 1863

Organized: 1863

Commodities: silver, mercury, gold, lead, zinc, copper, antimony, tungsten, fluorspar


The Union district includes mines in the vicinity of the camps of lone, Berlin, and Grantsville, and lies south of the Jackson (North Union) district. Hill (1912) used Ellsworth as an alternate name for the Berlin section of the present district.


Stretch, 1867, p. 57; White, 1869, p. 62; Whitehill, 1873, p. 107; Whitehill, 1879, p. 88; Hill, 1912, p. 220, 225; Lincoln, 1923, p. 195; Stoddard, 1932, p. 73; Kral, 1951, p. 195; Lawrence, 1963, p. 153; Bonham, 1976; Papke, 1979, p. 89; Jones, 1984; Kleinhampl and Ziony, 1984, p. 217; Stager and Tingley, 1988, p. 155

Union (Ione) Placer District Description


West slope of the Shoshone Mountains, on the east side of the lone Valley, T. 13 N., R. 39 E. (unsurveyed) ; partly on Toiyabe Na- tional Forest land).

Topographic Maps

Ione 15-minute quadrangle.

Geologic Maps

Silberling, 1959, Geologic map and sections of pre-Tertiary rocks of the Union district, Nye County, Nevada (pi. 10), scale 1:24,000. Vitaliano, 1963, Cenozoic geology and sections of the lone quadrangle, Nye County, Nevada, scale 1 : 62,500.


From Tonopah, 64 miles northwest to lone on dirt roads that lead through Big Smoky Valley to lone Valley. Placers are in immediate vicinity of lone.


The placers in the lone district occur in shallow gravels at the western edge of the mountains at two localities, 1 mile north and north-west of lone (approximately sees. 28 and 29, T. 13 N., R. 39 E., projected) and 1 mile southwest of lone (approximately sees. 2 and 3, T.12 N., R. 39 E., projected). The gold is found in surface debris and gravels 1—2 feet thick overlying caliche layers adjacent to, and downslope from, small gold veins in the Tertiary volcanic rocks.

Production History

The lone placers were first worked in 1909, and then intermittently until 1941. Total recorded placer gold production has been small, but the placers have attracted attention from companies considering large-scale operations. A group of Goldfield miners reportedly installed 2 miles of pipeline to bring water to the placers in 1909 in preparation for mining gravels valued at $1 per cubic yard. Between 1948 and about 1950, the placers north of the lone road were sampled over an area 300by 2,400 feet to a depth of 1 foot and were said to average $1.25 per cubic yard.

In 1958 the Goldfield Rand Co. investigated a 1,280-acre placer claim in the lone Valley and reported that drill samples of the gravels indicated a value of $1 per yard. This company had plans to install a large bucket dredge. None of the plans for large-scale operations materialized.


Krai (1951, p. 196-197) states that weathering of high-grade gold stringers in Tertiary rhyolite are the source of the gold placers lying adjacent to and below these veins. One property where these gold de- posits have eroded to form gold placers is the Bald Mountain Bill property, 1 mile northwest of lone. The ore at this small property occurs in high-grade gold stringers and pockets in Tertiary rhyolite associated with jasper.


Engineering and Mining Journal, 1958a: Reports drilling tests on 1,280-acre placer in lone Valley by Goldfield Rand Co. ; gravels said to indicate values of $1 per yard.

Krai, 1951: Locates placer deposits; reviews placer tests on different claims; value of gravels per cubic yard; source of placer gold.

Mining and Scientific Press, 1909: Reports developments at lone placers; length of pipeline being built; value of gravels per cubic yard.

Smith and Vanderburg, 1932: Describes details of placer-mining operations in 1932; reports average value of gravel.

Vanderburg, 1936a: Brief description of placer-mining activity during the period 1932-35.

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