Alta Mine

The Alta Mine is a lead, zinc, and silver mine located in Jefferson county, Montana at an elevation of 5,220 feet.

About the MRDS Data:

All mine locations were obtained from the USGS Mineral Resources Data System. The locations and other information in this database have not been verified for accuracy. It should be assumed that all mines are on private property.

Mine Info

Name: Alta Mine  

State:  Montana

County:  Jefferson

Elevation: 5,220 Feet (1,591 Meters)

Primary Mineral: Lead, Zinc, Silver

Lat, Long: 46.37222, -112.09306

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Satelite image of the Alta Mine

Alta Mine MRDS details

Site Name

Primary: Alta Mine


Commodity

Primary: Lead
Primary: Zinc
Primary: Silver
Secondary: Copper
Secondary: Silica
Secondary: Gold
Tertiary: Antimony


Location

State: Montana
County: Jefferson
District: Colorado (Corbin-Wickes) District


Land Status

Not available


Holdings

Not available


Workings

Type: Surface/Underground


Ownership

Owner Name: Alta Mines Corp.
Home Office: C/O F. Small, Helena, Montana 59601

Owner Name: Lahey Leasing Co, Corbin, Montana


Production

Year: 1957
Time Period: 1883-1957
Mined: 1189000.000 mt
Material type: ore


Deposit

Record Type: Site
Operation Category: Past Producer
Deposit Type: Polymetallic veins
Operation Type: Unknown
Discovery Year: 1869
Discovery Method: Ore-Mineral In Place
Years of Production:
Organization:
Significant: Y
Deposit Size: S


Physiography

General Physiographic Area: Rocky Mountain System
Physiographic Province: Northern Rocky Mountains


Mineral Deposit Model

Model Name: Polymetallic veins


Orebody

Form: IRREGULAR SHOOTS


Structure

Type: R
Description: Boulder Batholith, South-Trending Syncline In Elkhorn Mountains Volcanics

Type: L
Description: Roof Pendant Of Elkhorn Mountain Volcanics


Alterations

Alteration Type: L
Alteration Text: Volcanic Rocks In Shear Zone Are Intensley Altered, Oxidation Near Surface, Tourmalinization


Rocks

Name: Andesite
Role: Associated
Age Type: Associated Rock
Age Young: Late Cretaceous

Name: Andesite
Role: Associated
Age Type: Host Rock
Age Young: Late Cretaceous


Analytical Data

Analytical Data: 12% ZN IN CONCENTRATES
Analytical Data: 0.10 OZ/TON AU, 20-50 OZ/TON AG, 18-35% PB


Materials

Ore: Gold
Ore: Tetrahedrite
Ore: Pyrite
Ore: Sphalerite
Ore: Galena
Gangue: Sericite
Gangue: Tourmaline
Gangue: Rhodochrosite
Gangue: Quartz


Comments

Comment (Production): FROM 1950-56 LOW-GRADE ORE FROM AN OPEN PIT HAD BEEN SENT TO THE SMELTER AT E. HELENA FOR SILICA FLUX

Comment (Workings): MINE DEVELOPED BY 13 LEVELS OVER A VERTICAL INTERVAL OF 1370 FT. LEVELS 2, 4, 6, 8 WERE MAIN WORKING LEVELS, OPEN ON THE EASTERN SIDE OF ALTA MT. NO 8 LEVEL WAS THE MAIN HAULAGE LEVEL; THE DICK SHAFT, 665 FT. DEEP, IS NEAR THE NO. 8 LEVEL PORTAL.

Comment (Deposit): CLAIMS: FAITH, ALTA CALIFORNIA AND MILL SITE, CUSTER AND MILL SITE, GRANDFATHER AND MILL SITE, SOMEWHERE AND MILL SITE, KEYSTONE, GLYITIE, PONDORA, SILVER KING. ; INFO.SRC : 1 PUB LIT

Comment (Reserve-Resource): MINE MAPS INDICATE ABOUT 2,000,000 ST STOPED. REMAINING ROCK ABOVE NO. 11 LEVEL APPEARS TO BE VERY LOW GRADE. ANDESITE - QUARTZ MONZONITE CONTACT IS PROBABLY AT A DEPTH OF NO MORE THAN 2000 FT (800 FT BELOW LOWEST LEVEL) BUT QUARTZ MONZONITE IS ALSO FAVORABLE HOST ROCK. ASSUMING VEIN CAN BE MINED AN ADDITIONAL 400 FT IN DEPTH AT PREVIOUS ORE-WAST RATIOS GIVES FIRST ESTIMATE, ASSUMING AN AVERAGE VEIN WIDTH OF 15 FT. SECOND ESTIMATE ASSUMES RECOVERY OF REMAINING MINERALIZED ROCK BETWEEN NO. 2 LEVEL AND NO. 11 LEVEL. VEIN STRUCTURE APPEARS TO EXTEND WESTWARD UNDER VOLCANIC TUFF.

Comment (Deposit): ?GALENA OCCURS AS DISTINCT GRAINS ASSOCIATED WITH OTHER SULFIDE MINERALS, BUT NOT INTENSELY INTERELOCKED WITH THEM IN MOST CASES. SPHALERITE CONTAINS RELATIVELY ABUNDANT GRAINS AND ROUNDED BLEBS OF GALENA. TETRAHEDRITE, IN GALENA AS INCLUSIONS, OCCURS AS SMALL ROUNDED BLEBS USUALLY LESS THAN 0.01 MM ACROSS. HOWEVER, TETRAHEDRITE ALSO OCCURS AS DISTINCT GRAINS IN QUARTZ. PYRITE IS EXTREMELY FINE GRAINED IN SOME SPECIMENS AND IN OTHERS OCCURS AS LARGE CRYSTALS. MOST OF THE SULFIDE MINERALS ARE INTERLOCKED. GALENA, PYRITE, SPHALERITE, AND TETRAHEDRITE FORM INTERLOCKING AGGREGATES AND FINE-GRAINED CLUSTERS. MANGANESE HAS BEEN REPORTED AS A RELATIVELY ABUNDANT MINERAL IN THIS ORE. ANTIMONY WAS DETECTED IN TRACE AMOUNTS.? (YOUNG AND OTHERS, 1962).

Comment (Geology): VOLCANIC ROCKS IN SHEAR ZONE ARE INTENSELY ALTERED, OXIDATION (AND IRON STAINING) NEAR SURFACE; ARGILLIZATION, TOURMALINIZATION, BLEACHING AND PERVASIVE ARGILLIC ALTERATION OUTWARD AND SERICITIC ALTERATION NEAREST THE ORE ZONE, AND QUARTZ FLOODING (HOLT, 1960).

Comment (Geology): ?FISSURE VEIN ALONG A CRUSHED AND BRECCIATED ZONE IN ANDESITE? (UNPUBLISHED MBMG FILES, RM 213, MAIN HALL, MONTANA TECH, BUTTE). ?A ZONE OF CRUSHED AND SHEARED ANDESITE REPORTED TO BE 40 TO 120 FEET IN WIDTH ENCLOSES THE ORE (ROPES, 1922). THE ZONE HAS BEEN EXPLORED FOR A LENGTH OF ABOUT 2,000 FEET. NORTH-EAST STRIKING FAULTS, YOUNGER THAN THE ORE MINERALIZATION, CROSS THE CRUSHED ZONE FORMING THREE OFFSET SHOOTS. THE ORE BODIES WERE DISTRIBUTED IRREGULARLY IN THE CRUSHED ANDESITE OF THESE THREE SHOOTS.? (ROBY AND OTHERS, 1960).

Comment (Workings): APPROXIMATELY 4 MILES OF UNDERGROUND WORKINGS, HORIZONTAL RANGE - 5,000 FT; VERTICAL RANGE -1,200 FT. (MBMG UNPUBLISHED FILES, RM 213, MAIN HALL, MONTANA TECH, BUTTE).

Comment (Development): 1869-1883 - ALTA MONTANA COMPANY BUYS PROPERTY 1883 - ACQUIRED BY THE HELENA MINING AND REDUCTION COMPANY. 1889 - MOST OF THE ORE ABOVE THE MAIN HAULAGEWAY HAD BEEN EXTRACTED (BECRAFT AND OTHERS, 1963). 1894 - WINZE HAD BEEN SUNK 600 FEET. 1896 - MINE CLOSED. PECK CONCENTRATOR BUILT TO RE-RUN TAILINGS. 1905 - OPERATED BY HELENA AND LIVINGSTON SMELTING AND REDUCTION COMPANY (S.T. HAUSER AND D.C. CORBIN). 1906 - OPERATING. 1907 - VERY SMALL PRODUCTION. 1908 - ALTA-GREGORY REPORTED A SMALL PRODUCTION. 1909 - TAKEN OVER BY THE BOSTON AND ALTA COMPANY. SANK 665-FOOT SHAFT AT THE PORTAL OF THE NO. 8 ADIT AND DROVE THE 1,300 FOOT LEVEL. 1910 - IDLED. 1911 - LESSEES. 1912-1913 - ALTA-GREGORY ONE OF THE LARGEST PRODUCERS. 1914 - ALTA-GREGORY PRODUCED A SMALL QUANTITY OF AG-AU. 1916 - SMALL PRODUCTION. 1917-1918 - SMALL PRODUCTION. 1920 - 15,233 TONS OF SLAG FROM WICKES. 1921 - ALTA-MONTANA AND ALTA-GREGORY OPERATING. 1922 - SMALL PRODUCTION OF ORE, CONSIDERABLE SLAG SHIPPED. 1923 - CONSIDERABLE SLAG SHIPPED. 1924 - SEVERAL HUNDRED TONS OF SLAG SHIPPED. 1925 - JEFFERSON MILLING COMPANY OPERATED TWO MILLS ON THE OLD DUMPS. HEWITT MILL RE-TREATS TAILINGS FOR THE THIRD TIME. 1928 - WORKINGS INACCESSIBLE. 1930 - NORTH ALTA GROUP (J.L. TEMPLEMAN OF BUTTE) OPERATING 1,000 FT NORTH OF THE OLD ALTA VEIN. 1938-1941 - 146,000 TONS OF TAILINGS CONCENTRATED AT THE HEWITT MILL. 1969 - MINE IDLE

Comment (Production): PRIOR TO 1893, PRODUCTION ABOUT $32,000,000 FROM 1,250,000 TONS OF ORE (MAINLY LEAD-SILVER). ?RECORDED PRODUCTION IS 997,650 TONS. ABOUT 10,000 TONS OF ORE WAS PRODUCED BETWEEN 1901 AND 1948, AND NEARLY 250,000 TONS OF TAILINGS WERE RE-TREATED DURING THE LAST TWO MILLING OPERATIONS. AN ESTIMATED FEW HUNDRED THOUSAND TONS HAVE BEEN MINED FROM THE OPEN PIT FOR USE AS SILICA FLUX.? (BECRAFT AND OTHERS, 1963). ?IN OCTOBER, 1893, THE MINE WAS PRACTICALLY WORKED OUT ABOVE THE 800 FOOT LEVEL, A TOTAL PRODUCTION OF 997,650 TONS OF ORE WAS RECORDED.? (MBMG UNPUBLISHED FILES, RM 213, MAIN HALL, MONTANA TECH, BUTTE). ?THE RECORDED PRODUCTION FROM 1902 TO 1957 FOR THE ALTA MINE IS 349,839 TONS ORE WHICH YIELDED 8,174 OUNCES GOLD, 1,165,299 OUNCES SILVER, 546,286 POUNDS COPPER, 8,134,488 POUNDS LEAD, AND 1,234,644 POUNDS ZINC.? (ROBY AND OTHERS, 1960)

Comment (Location): S AND SE SIDE OF ALTA MT.

Comment (Deposit): A ZONE OF CRUSHED ANDESITE FROM 40-120 FT WIDE ENCLOSES THE VEIN. THE ZONE HAS BEEN EXPLORED FOR A LENGTH OF 2000 FT. NE STRIKING FAULTS CROSS THE CRUSHED ZONE FORMING 3 OFF-SET SHOOTS.

Comment (Deposit): Merged data from Deposit ID's: 10123905 (Alta Mine) 10124963 (North Alta) 10172796 (Little Alta)


References

Reference (Deposit): YOUNG, F.M., CROWLEY, F.A., AND SAHINEN, U.M., 1962, MARKETING PROBLEMS OF SMALL BUSINESS ENTERPRISES ENGAGED IN LEAD AND ZINC MINING: MBMG BULL 30, P. 24

Reference (Deposit): ROBY,R.N., ACKERMAN, W.C., FULKERSON, F.B., AND CROWLEY, F.A., 1960, MINES AND MINERAL DEPOSITS (EXCEPT FUELS), JEFFERSON COUNTY, MONTANA: MBMG BULL 16, P. 6, 26, 44-7, 51, 107.

Reference (Deposit): HANSEN, MILLER, 1971, DIRECTORY OF MINING ENTERPRISES FOR 1970: MBMG BULL 82

Reference (Deposit): ROBERTSON, FORBES, 1956, GEOCHEMICAL PROSPECTING BY SOIL ANALYSIS IN MONTANA: MBMG BULL 7

Reference (Deposit): BECRAFT, G.E., PINCKNEY, D.M., AND ROSENBLUM, SAM, 1963, GEOLOGY AND MINERAL DEPOSITS OF THE JEFFERSON CITY QUADRANGLE, JEFFERSON AND LEWIS AND CLARK COUNTIES, MONTANA: USGS PP 428, P. 36, 38, 40, 53, 70, 71

Reference (Deposit): KNOPF, ADOLF, 1913, ORE DEPOSITS OF THE HELENA MINING REGION: USGS BULL 527, P. 109-10.

Reference (Deposit): PARDEE, J.T., AND SCHRADER, F.C, 1933, METALLIFEROUS DEPOSITS OF THE GREATER HELENA MINING REGION: USGS BULL 842, P. 241-2.

Reference (Production): MBMG BULL. 16, USGS PROF. PAPER 428