Our Man in St. David, Arizona

Rolf Luetcke reports,

Hi Tom,

Shame about the thefts and destruction at that location, it is a sad part of todays’ time, well, not just today but it went on here in the area also. What happened here was years ago one of the Treasure Magazines had an article about the old ghost towns that the people had lived in. They talked about a lot of the people who lived in the adobe places and wooden ones too, would hide things in the walls, gold coins, jewelry and more. So, guess what, the people who read that article went to any ghost towns they could access and started knocking down the walls, looking for the possible stash. The one place I remember a lot of old adobe buildings was Gleeson not too far from us. I went there back in the 70’s, when I moved to Bisbee and there were a lot of old adobe buildings there.

A number of years later, all the buildings were down. At first I thought it was just weathering and then I talked to someone who told me that the “treasure” hunters had come in and knocked the walls down with their 4 wheel drive vehicles, looking for those stashes in the walls. That one article sure ruined a lot of old buildings that were really historic.

I saw that in other places too, too many were just destroyed for what probably was not there at all. One gal in Bisbee, an older Mexican lady that lived up the street from my house there, she used to live in a smaller house near the Mexican border, still in the US and she told me that her mom had that house. She also said her mom had told her that she had burried a bag of gold coins under that house. I said she should go down and find it. She said she was not going to go looking. Now what is wrong with that picture. I know that nobody who actually had a story that was true would not go looking for a bag of gold coins. So, I knew it was just a made up story.

So many of the old treasure stories were just that, made up. I had talked to a fellow who was an old prospector that used to come in our shop. He said a lot of the old prospectors in the old West would run out of money and they would sit in the bars and tell tales of gold to anyone who would listen and buy them drinks. Of course those were made up stories, like the Lost Dutchman and they abounded. For drinks I wonder how many of those were told. Mary has a sister who’s husband had bought into a couple of those stories. He had one about a “gold vein” that was in the Whetstone Mountains near us. The story went that an old prospector back in the old west was walking from Tucson to Tombstone and ran out of water while crossing the Whetstones. He said that he was so thirsty that when he found a quartz vein loaded with gold he was too thirsty to do anything but get to the San Pedro River for water. Then he never could find it again. The brother in law was always over there looking for it.

Now it never did anything for me because the rock type over there was just wrong for gold.

As for the Geyserite. When I found the American Mine in Cochise County, only a few miles north of us, it had only one photo on mindat and that was Geyserite!! Mary and I went out there often to collect and I never saw anything that resembled geyserite I knew about. I knew it formed in a few different ways and one was vents of hot fluids coming from below. Just not the right area over at the American Mine. All the times we went over there and one trip Mary found some jasperoid material that was pink. Different than any of the rock on the dumps. She tossed it in the collecting bag. At home I looked under the microscope and in the jasperoid stuff were hollows and when I got those under the magnification I saw the Geyserite. It had formed in the jasper material at the edge of the ore body that also formed from solutions that came in from below. The jasperoid was the ore control body in the ground and since it is a hard material because of the quartz in it, the mining didn’t need to remove any of it to get the ore out so very little of that material ever got above ground to the dumps except that piece Mary found. The explination of the jasperoid ore control in the ground told me where the geyserite had been. We did get one and in those vesicles in the jasper material were the deposited opal that often is in the geyserite. So, we finally did get some.

I add the photo here.

Again, shame about the messing with the mine equipment and stealing it. Happens too often these days.

Take care


This is that jasperoid material Mary found, 5x4cm and those small holes are where the geyserite was.

Here is a close up of the vesicles in the jasper material, you can see the rough quartz that formed and the opal that also deposited.

This is a picture of the geyserite I got yesterday. I have yet to scope it.

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