Abstract

The Battle Branch mine, in north-central Georgia, is well known locally for its pockets of exceptionally rich gold ore. During the period from May 24, 1934, to May 20, 1935, 781.97 ounces of bullion, of an average fineness of about 850, was shipped to the mint. The deposit is of the lode type; it consists of many quartz stringers and lenses grouped in three zones in a schistose phase of the Carolina gneiss. Three stages of mineralization are recognized. An early high-temperature stage produced coarsely crystalline silicates, such as garnet, kyanite, tourmaline, biotite, and muscovite, which were probably formed by a recrystallization of the minerals in the country rock. During the intermediate stage ankerite, quartz, and pyrrhotite were formed. The last stage was marked by chlorite, galena, and gold. Throughout the period of mineralization minor amounts of movement in and across the lode occurred. The distribution of the ore shoots is dependent to a large extent upon the distribution of the cross fractures. The ore shoots are pod-shaped bodies, which pinch and swell abruptly. The gold in the rich shoots is contemporaneous with galena and is clearly of hypogene origin.

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