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Guide to the New Almaden Mine (Calif.) Collection, 1845-1973
Special Collections M0270  
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Collection Overview
 
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Background
In 1845, Captain Andres Castillero of the Mexican Army was sent on a routine scouting patrol through what is now northern California, then part of Mexican territory. As an amateur geologist, Castillero recognized the possibility that the rolling hills held vast mineral deposits. During a visit to local Indians, his suspicions were confirmed. The Indians told him of the red rock they used to make paint, and of the cave where the walls were solid deposits of this red rock. A trip to the cave left Castillero amazed; the red rock was cinnabar, high grade mercury ore. He quickly filed a claim with the most suitable local authority, a justice of the peace, and received mineral rights to excavate the mine site. The rights were divided among five principal holders, including Castillero, his guide, and the Indians who led him to the mine.
Extent
86 linear ft.
Restrictions
Property rights reside with the repository. Literary rights reside with the creators of the documents or their heirs. To obtain permission to publish or reproduce, please contact the Public Services Librarian of the Dept. of Special Collections.
Availability
None.