Oroville, CA - Historic Dredge Operation
Location: On the Feather River, Oroville, CA
Size: 1-2 Miles wide, 9 miles long.
Depth: 30 - 40 ft.
First Bucket Line Dredge in California: 1898
Status: Historic
Production Total Estimated 1,964,000 oz Gold

See our Custom Map.

Use the Custom Map link above and see an interactive map of the historic dredge works. Look upstream to find the Oroville Dam. CLICK HERE to view the original, detailed map with a legend of dredge activities.

Oroville, California became a topic of interest earlier this year when the Oroville Dam spillway was washed away. Just downriver from the dam is one of the largest historic gold dredging operations in the country. In 1908 there were 35 dredges operated simultaneously on the Feather River at Oroville. Dredging operations were active as late as 1952.

Read all the details of all of the historic dredge operations in California Bulletin no 57. Gold Dredging in California. Download it from the Land Matters Library.



Dredge at Oroville
by Leigh
Monday, July 24, 2017, 05:08 PM

When I was a child, we spent many summer weekends visiting National Battlefields. I learned the history of battles that had happened all around the places where we lived. I am still discovering new things about the places most familiar to me. As Land Matters grows, we hope to help you discover some of the interesting things in your own neighborhood.

In the Land Matters library you can seek out your own park adventure. Find nearby National Parks and Park Units (including National Battlefields) for an interesting day trip. There are several ways to do this. You can search by park name, state or keyword to find what you are looking for.

Choose one of these TABS in the Land Matters Library:

Resources: Get links to park websites for ALL the details.

Collections: Search the Map Collection to Download a MAP of where you are going.

Quick Search: Find documents on the geology, maps and other information about your favorite park simply by typing in the park name.


Go to the Land Matters Library
by Leigh
Saturday, June 24, 2017, 09:44 PM

Bingham Canyon Mine - Rio Tinto Kennecott

Location: 25 miles SW of Salt Lake City, Utah
Depth: About 4,000 ft
Width: 2.75 miles across
Start of Production: 1906
Status: Active

Annual Production
Copper(Cu) - 275,000 tons refined
Gold (Au) - 400,000 oz
Silver (Ag) - 4,000,000 oz
Molybdenum (Mo) - 25,000,000 lbs

Bingham Canyon Mine is the second-largest copper production site in the United States and provides nearly 25% of the countrys copper. It is also the largest man-made excavation in the world and is considered to have produced more copper than any mine in history - more than 19 million tons.

See our Custom Map of the mine.

Use the Show Map link above to wander around the mine with aerial imagery. I found the image at right of mine trucks in action on my own tour of the the great pit. Click for a larger image in context.

Bingham Canyon Mine has a vistors center for the public. However. it may still be closed due to the major mine landslide back in 2013. Check the Kennecott website for details. It’s certainly on my list wondrous places to visit.


by Leigh
Thursday, June 22, 2017, 02:49 PM

Land Matters
New Features
You may have noticed that posts to our New & Views section have been light over the last few months. The lack of content is due in part to the reduction in land actions being proposed since our new president took office. At the end of last year there were proposed withdrawals being published each week. Many of these are now under review by the new administration. We will keep you updated on any changes that occur.

Only a few very small withdrawals have been recently proposed. Because our time won't be spent mapping land withdrawals, we will be able to add a few other features to New & Views that I think you will enjoy.

I recently had visitors from the East Coast who were fascinated by the sheer size of the active mines they saw on their explorations around Arizona (and that was what could be seen from the road!) Those unfamiliar with western lands are generally unexposed to the mining industry and have a limited understanding of the actual size of these mines and the importance of their production.

I will be doing a series of posts on some of the more interesting mines in the United States with basic facts and a custom map to take you around the mine site. First up is Bingham Canyon in Utah. Wander around and take a look at one of the largest active mines in the country.
by Leigh
Thursday, June 22, 2017, 01:34 PM

The BLM is proposing a lease of about 1,046 acres of public land in Maricopa County, Arizona. The area is split into two parcels. One that borders the famous Vulture Mine, and a second that covers a commonly used parking and camping area in the Vulture Mountains.

Maricopa County proposes to use the land for a variety of recreation facilities to be associated with the Vulture Mountains Cooperative Recreation Management Area. This is to be a cooperatively managed area between the BLM and Maricopa County. Related improvements for the proposed lease include picnic and camping facilities, restrooms, trailheads, developed day use facilities, and parking.

This is a highly mineralized area and has been prospected throughout the regions history. The land specified will be withdrawn from the General Mining Laws.

by Leigh
Tuesday, December 13, 2016, 07:57 PM

Our newest national monument, Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument, located in central Maine, was established by Presidential Proclamation 9476 under the authority of the Antiquities Act on August 24, 2016.

Approximately 87,500 acres of land was donated by Elliotsville Plantation Inc. and the Roxanne Quimby Foundation has established a "substantial" endowment with the National Park Foundation to support the administration of this national monument. It will be administered by the National Park Service.

Our Land Matters Katahdin Map shows the location and boundaries of this new monument. Check out the new NPS Website for more monument details and recreation maps. This is the first in a series of posts about our newest National Monuments.
by Leigh
Tuesday, September 27, 2016, 09:21 PM


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