Ducktown District

Region Central, South Central
Mineral systems
Deposit types
Critical minerals
Other minerals

Information leading to the delineation of this focus area

Basis for focus area MRDS entries for Zn in Tennessee (Northeast Ducktown district) and for Cu in Georgia (Southwest Ducktown district).
Identified resources Identified resources for cobalt, copper, lead, and zinc. Historical production of copper, copper sulfate, copper fungicides, iron sinter, liquid sulfur dioxide, sulfuric acid, organic sulfonates, and zinc concentrate.
Production The Burra Burra ore body contained 19 million tons of ore; 15.6 million tons was mined. This included 511,122,200 lbs Cu; 2,080,060 tons Fe (since recovery began in 1925); 196,825,000 lbs Zn (since recovery began in 1927); and 3,485,350 tons S (since recovery began in 1907). Production from the London ore body (closed in 1926) was 1.6 million tons of ore containing 1.8% Cu. The London mill also produced a Zn concentrate. From 1861 to 1963 547,095 short tons of Cu were recovered from Tennessee operations. In 1942, a large sulfuric acid plant was built at Copperhill and liquid sulfur dioxide was produced in 1949.
Status Past mining; last mines closed in 1987.
Estimated resources Ducktown district has an estimated resource of 40 million lbs Co (Vhay and others, 1973). About 4 million tons of ore remains in the support pillars of the Burra Burra mine, the largest operation in the district.
Geologic maps Hernon (1964), scale 1:24,000; Wiener and Merschat (1992), scale 1:250,000; Clark and others (1993), scale 1:500,000.
Geophysical data Inadequate aeromagnetic and aeroradiometric coverage.
Favorable rocks and structures Copperhill Formation of the Great Smokey Group.
Deposits Ducktown district (USMIN Site_ID TN00001), Boyd, Burra Burra mine (MRDS dep_id: 10251584), Calloway mine (MRDS dep_id: 10202645), Cherokee, Copperhill, Eureka, Isabella, Mary, North Pit, South Pit, Mine No. 20, Mobile.
Evidence from mineral occurrences MRDS; USMIN.
Geochemical evidence Deposits first found in 1843 from the occurrence of native Cu downstream from the Burra Burra ore body.
Geophysical evidence Unknown.
Evidence from other sources Exploration, diamond drilling.
Comments The massive sulfide deposits in the Ducktown district occur in highly folded orebodies. They were mined for Cu, Fe, S, and Zn, with small amounts of Au and Ag as smelting byproducts.
Cover thickness and description Near surface, area of deep weathering.
Authors Laurel G. Woodruff, Peter J. Lemiszki.
New data needs Geophysical data, geological mapping, geochemical analyses.
Geologic mapping and modeling needs Modern 1:24,000 scale geologic mapping, drill core logs, and 3-D geologic modeling.
Geophysical survey and modeling needs High resolution aeromagnetic and aeroradiometric coverage.
Digital elevation data needs Lidar adequate or in progress.