Stonehouse Creek

Mine, Undetermined

Alternative names

Irene Gulch

Commodities and mineralogy

Main commodities Au
Other commodities Hg; W
Ore minerals cinnabar; gold; scheelite

Geographic location

Quadrangle map, 1:250,000-scale EA
Quadrangle map, 1:63,360-scale A-2
Latitude 64.1144
Longitude -141.9258
Nearby scientific data Find additional scientific data near this location
Location and accuracy Stonehouse Creek is a small creek about 3 miles north of Chicken; it drains southeast into Chicken Creek. Irene Gulch, a small gold-bearing tributary to Stonehouse Creek, is here grouped with Stonehouse Creek. Placer tailings on Stonehouse Creek are shown on the U.S. Geological Survey 1:63,360-scale topographic map of the Eagle A-2 quadrangle (1956; revised in 1971). The coordinates correspond to the approximate midpoint of the tailings, which are located on a terrace gravel bench about 250 feet above the creek level in section 17, T. 27 N., R. 18 E., of the Copper River Meridian. The location is accurate. This site is locality 78 and 79 of Burleigh and Lear (1994), locality 17 of Eberlein and others (1977), and locality 50 of Cobb (1972 [MF-393]).

Geologic setting

Geologic description

Stonehouse Creek flows through a fault-bounded, structurally down-dropped basin that preserves a wedge of Tertiary gabbro and sedimentary rocks (Werdon and others, 2001). Intra-basin, high-angle faults are rarely exposed in outcrop but are inferred from the distribution of geologic units, stratigraphic relations, and airborne resistivity and magnetic data (Alaska Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys and others, 1999). The structural basin is bounded to the south and east by the Taylor Mountain batholith of Triassic age and to the north and west by upper Paleozoic greenschist-facies metasedimentary and metavolcanic rocks (Foster, 1969; Werdon and others, 2001). In the headwaters of Stonehouse Creek, the upper Paleozoic metamorphic rocks are in high-angle fault contact with the Chicken pluton of Jurassic age to the north.
Quaternary alluvium and colluvium deposits are extensive within the area of Stonehouse Creek and in the Chicken Creek valley. They consist largely of gravel and lesser silt and sand overlain by muck. Placer gold mining in Chicken Creek (EA128) has exposed numerous Pleistocene mammalian fossils, including mammoth, horse, caribou, and bison (Pinney, 2001). Many of the benches of Quaternary terrace gravel are of possible glaciofluvial origin (Pinney, 2001).
Most of the placer mining on Stonehouse Creek has been on benches of terrace gravel on the north wall of the valley; these terraces are as high as 70 feet above the creek. Alluvial deposits along the creek have been mined for placer gold as well. Gravel deposits on benches are 2 to 8 feet thick. The gold is rough and dark colored (Prindle, 1905). Smith (1941 [B 910-C]) reported a gold assay of 802.75 parts of gold per thousand from Stonehouse Creek. Placer concentrates contain mostly magnetite, ilmenite, and pyrite, but they also contain minor specular hematite and scheelite, and numerous grains of cinnabar.
Placer gold was produced intermittently from about 1903 to at least 1936 and perhaps at later times as well. Stonehouse Creek and its benches have been mined by drifting, open cuts, and bulldozer and scraper methods (Burleigh and Lear, 1994). At least some of the placer gold may have been derived from quartz and calcite veins (Prindle, 1909) from the nearby Purdy lode gold prospect (EA121). Gold production from 1904 to 1907, including that from Myers Fork (EA124), Lost Chicken Creek (EA131), Stonehouse Creek (EA122), and Ingle Creek (EA111), totaled about 18,835 fine ounces (Eberlein and others, 1977).
Geologic map unit (-141.928083212145, 64.1140712645525)
Mineral deposit model Placer Au (Cox and Singer, 1986; model 39a).
Mineral deposit model number 39a
Age of mineralization Quaternary.

Production and reserves

Workings or exploration Placer gold was produced intermittently from about 1903 to at least 1936, and perhaps at later times as well. Stonehouse Creek has been mined by drifting, open cut, and bulldozer and scraper methods. Most of the placer mining on Stonehouse Creek has been on benches of terrace gravel on the north wall of the valley; these benches are as high as 70 feet above the creek. Alluvial deposits along the creek have been mined for placer gold as well.
Indication of production Yes; small
Production notes Smith (1941 [B 910-C]) reported a gold assay of 802.75 parts of gold per thousand from Stonehouse Creek. Gold production from 1904 to 1907 that included that from Myers Fork (EA124), Lost Chicken Creek (EA131), Stonehouse Creek (EA122), and Ingle Creek (EA111) totaled about 18,835 fine ounces (Eberlein and others, 1977). Placer gold was produced intermittently from about 1903 to at least 1936 and perhaps at later times as well. Stonehouse Creek and its benches have been mined by drifting, open cut, and bulldozer and scraper methods (Burleigh and Lear, 1994).

References

MRDS Number A015154; D002693

References

Malone, Kevin, 1965, Mercury in Alaska, in Mercury potential of the United States: U.S. Bureau of Mines Information Circular 8252, p. 31-59.
Reporters M.B. Werdon
Last report date 5/1/2002