Sunday, February 21, 2016

400,000 pages of Arizona mining and mineral resources files now online

Historic one-of-a-kind Arizona mining documents - once filed away in cabinets and boxes - are now online, discoverable, and accessible at the Arizona Geological Survey Mining Data website (

More than 20,000 files, maps, and reports contributed by dozens of exploration geologists and mining firms are now available.  The website exposes more than 8,500 geologic and engineering reports; 6,800 maps – geologic maps, mining claim maps, maps with assays, plats, underground maps and cross sections; and 5,500 historic photographs dating from the 1890s to 2000.    The reports comprise over 400,000 pages of materials.

Thousands of additional documents and supporting data will be added to the site over the next months and years.
This new online resource is being premiered in time for the 2016 Society for Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration Annual Conference and Expo in Phoenix from Feb. 21 – 24. The collection includes major exploration holdings from the Arizona Department of Mines and Mineral Resources, Walter E. and Grover Heinrichs, James Sell, A.F. Budge Mining Ltd., Cambior Exploration, among many others. 

Besides being a repository of Arizona mining history documents, these data can be valuable assets for mining firms and prospectors exploring for mineral resources.  “The mining repository contained historic maps for the Van Deemen Gold project in Mohave County … showed the location of 44 additional drill holes and allowed us to integrate that information with existing drill logs, assays …, “ said Barbara Carroll, part of an exploration team investigating Van Deemen Gold property.  
Since the 1850s, Arizona has been a mecca for prospectors, exploration geologists and mining firms seeking copper, gold, silver, molybdenum, zinc, lead, manganese, tungsten, uranium, and coal, turquoise and semi-precious gems.  Collectively, they left a mile-high paper trail of hundreds of thousands of pages, tens of thousands reports, well logs, letters, photographs, and geologic and mine maps. 

From 1939 to 2010, the mining documents comprising this online repository were donated by exploration geologists and mining firms to the Arizona Mines and Mineral Resources Department.  

The Mining Data site includes an applied search tool filtered by key words, mine names, collections, time and place.  The geographic search tool provides for a radius search of 1 to 100s of miles from a point of interest. 

Funding for this project provided in part by multiple matching grants from the U.S. Geological Survey National Geological and Geophysical Data Preservation Program.

AZGS has an additional ~400,000 pages of reports from other states and countries. we are seeking funding sources to digitize those and make them publicly available.

[modified from the AZGS news release]

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous8:09 PM

    A lot of work went into this and it shows. Well done!