Santa Cruz County History - Making a Living

Mineral Survey of Santa Cruz County - Gold
by C. McK. Laizure

Prepared by C. McK. Laizure,
Mining Engineer of the California State Mining Bureau

Gold occurs in Santa Cruz County in auriferous black sand deposits, in placer deposits in a number of creeks and gulches on the sides of Ben Lomond Mountain, and in small quartz seams on Ben Lomond Mountain. During the eighties there was considerable activity both in working the black sand deposits near San Andreas and the placers and veins in the vicinity of Felton. The principal placers were on Waddell Creek, Majors Creek and Gold Gulch. Colors of gold are not difficult to obtain in the gravels along Gold Gulch and some placer mining was done here as late as 1920. Former operations are described in early reports of the State Mineralogist and in the History of Santa Cruz County, by Harrison.

The industry, if it could ever have been called one, gradually diminished and it is now a matter of history, about the only reminder being a large sign Gold Gulch Drug Store over a new building on the highway to Felton, near the site of some of the early workings. The larger land holdings in this vicinity are being subdivided for summer homesites and residence purposes and it is doubtful if any tracts would be sold or leased for mining purposes.

The black sand deposit being worked near Aptos by the Triumph Steel Company for its magnetite, ilmenite and chromite content is stated by this company to carry about 20 cents per ton in gold, but so far no effort has been made to recover it. See under Iron and Black Sand.


State Mineralogist's Reports VIII, pp. 550-553; X, pp. 622-624; XII, pp. 243-244; XVII, pp. 235-236.
History of Santa Cruz County, Harrison, P. 203.

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Bituminous Rock   Gold Mineral Water
Black Sand Granite Moulding Sand & Peat
Cement Iron Petroleum & Potash
Clay Lime Stone Industry
Coal Limestone   

The Mineral Survey of Santa Cruz County was printed in the Santa Cruz Chamber of Commerce Annual Report, 1926. Reproduced by permission of the Santa Cruz Area Chamber of Commerce.

View similarly tagged articles:

Ben Lomond Mountain, mining


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