The quartz gem stones mentioned above, as well as the crystal and smoky varieties, are found with rutile and other interesting minerals in the continuation of the monazite belt in North Carolina.
GEM MINERALS OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA.
The following notes on the gem-mining industry of San Diego and Riverside counties in southern California have been furnished by Mr. Fred M. Sickler, of Pala, San Diego County, Cal.:
SAN DIEGO COUNTY.
The principal gem minerals mined are tourmaline of many colors, pink and lilac colored spodumene, aquamarine and pink beryl, topaz, essonite, epidote, and axinite. These minerals are found in pegmatite veins cutting diorite and gabbro. The latter rocks are inclosed in large areas of granite. The gem-bearing region is bounded on the east and west by sedimentary and eruptive rocks (largely basalt). The sedimentary rocks contain limestone, near the contact of which with the intrusive rocks essonite garnets are found. The gem belt probably nowhere exceeds 40 miles in width, measured in an east-west direction, and extends from the San Jacinto Mountains in Riverside County southward through San Diego County into lower California. The region has been the seat of considerable activity, both in the development of old mines and in the discovery of new prospects, during the year 1906.
At Pala work on the tourmaline King mine was pushed energetically for a part of the year, and tourmaline of great beauty and large size was obtained along with some beryl and "water sapphire." On account of litigation with a neighboring claim, however, the work was stopped about the middle of the year. Work on the tourmaline Queen mine was continued, stones of a variety of colors and of unsurpassed quality being produced. Messrs. Gordon and Goodwin have sunk about 50 feet on a new prospect and report the finding of beryl and kunzite. Messrs. Lobaugh & Co. sank an incline shaft to a considerable depth on an extension of the Stewart ledge. Lepidolite, large quartz crystals, and other evidence of a good gem formation were encountered, but no information was given conc'erning the production. The Pala Chief mine was active during the year and produced a large quantity of kunzite and tourmaline. Messrs. Magee & Co. did a large amount of tunneling on their new property and obtained considerable aquamarine beryl and indicolite. Mr. Ben Hubert reported a good find of gems on a new claim. Messrs. Hiriart and Teilitch mined a quantity of pink kunzite and beryl from their claims. The Caterina mine, which they own in partnership with Mr. M. M. Sickler, has proved to be the equal of any kunzite mine in southern California. They found a very large pocket of gems and have traced the mineralized portion of the ledge several hundred feet beyond its former supposed limit. The Sickler Gem Mining Company produced considerable kunzite, as well as excellent tourmaline and some beryl. The green tourmaline from its properties more nearly rivals the emerald in color than that from any other locality in the State.
At Rincon the Victor Gem Mining Company has been exploiting a new field. In one deposit beryl of fine aquamarine color was obtained in large quantity. In another deposit good kunzite was found for the first time in this district, along with beryl and tourmaline. Some of the tourmaline from this locality has a green core and shell, with a yellowish ring between and has been cut so as to show the combination of colors with pleasing effect.
The Himalaya Mining Company has directed its energies mainly to deep mining, which involved a large amount of dead work. It is thought, however, that even if the production was small there was a sufficiently large stock on hand from the preceding year to meet requirements, since the mine has been unequaled in the production of tourmaline. The San Diego Tourmaline Mining Company has completed hundreds of feet of tunnels and is in a position to make a large production. The company reports a large sale of gems in Germany at good prices. The Native Gem Mining Company produced principally pink and aquamarine beryl, with tourmaline