Abstract

The Spar Valley fluorspar district in the Eagle Mountains, Hudspeth County, Texas, is one of the few in the western United States containing bedding-replacement fluorspar deposits. The deposits at Spar Valley resemble the bedding-replacement deposits of the Cave in Rock fluorspar district of southern Illinois. Two distinct deposits, the North and the South ore bodies, are present. The North ore body is larger and has been developed by diamond drilling and mining; the following statements apply chiefly to it.The fluorspar partly replaces a sequence of three sandy limestones interbedded with four calcareous shales in the lower part of the Edwards limestone of Lower Cretaceous age. The fluoritized beds, which dip 40 degrees SW in conformity with underlying limestone, are overlain by thick impermeable gouge along a bedding-plane fault dipping slightly more than 40 degrees SW. The high-grade beds were derived from the sandy limestones, and the low-grade beds, which contain as much as 28 percent of CaF 2 , were formed from the calcareous shales. The selectiveness of replacement by the fluorine-bearing solutions, due to differences in the chemical composition, texture, and degree of brecciation of the original rock, resulted in bedding-replacement deposits of variable fluorite content.A reduction in volume, which accompanied the replacement, led to the development of many cavities. During the later stages of fluoritization these cavities were lined with fluorite crystals, early fluorite grains were coated and interstices between them were filled, and fluorite veins were formed in the ore beds and the underlying dense limestone.

First Page Preview

First page PDF preview
You do not currently have access to this article.