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MINERAL PAINT. Bibliography: State Mineralogist Reports XII, XIII. Bulletin 38. Mineral paint, principally yellow ochre, was produced in California in 1915, from Calaveras, San Bernardino and Stanislaus counties, amounting to 311 tons, valued at $1,756. This is a little more than double the tonnage and value of 1914.
Besides the above named counties, deposits of mineral paint are located in the following: Kern, Kings, Lake, Los Angeles, Nevada, Riverside, and Sonoma.
The first recorded production of this material in the state was in the year 1890. Production, showing annual amount and value, to date since that time is given herewith:
Bibliography: State Mineralogist Reports VI, XII, XIII. U. S.
G. S., Water Supply Paper 338. A widespread production of mineral water is shown by the following table for 1915. These figures refer to mineral water actually bottled for sale, or for local consumption. Water from some of the springs having a decided medicinal value brings a price many times higher than the average shown, while in some cases the water is used merely for drinking purposes and sells for a nominal figure. Health and pleasure resorts are located at many of the springs. The waters of some of the hot springs are not suitable for drinking, but are very efficacious for bathing. From a therapeutic standpoint, California is particularly rich in mineral springs. The counterparts of practically any of the worldfamed spas of Europe or the eastern United States can be found here.
Commercial production, by counties, for 1915 was:
Amount and value of mineral water produced in California since 1887 are given herewith:
PHOSPHATES. Bibliography: Bulletin 67. No commercial production of phosphates has been recorded from California, though occasional pockets of the lithia phosphate, amblygonite, Li(AIF)PO,, have been found associated with the gem tourmaline deposits in San Diego County. Such production has been classified under lithia.
PUMICE and VOLCANIC ASH.
Bulletin 38. The production of pumice and volcanic ash for the year 1915 amounted to 380 tons, valued at $6,400, and came from Imperial, Inyo
and Madera counties. The material from Imperial County is the vesicular, block pumice, this being practically the only locality in the United States producing this class of rock at the present time; and is stated to have found a ready market. The Lipari Islands, Italy, have in the past been the principal source of supply of block pumice, but now largely shut off owing to the European war. There are other known deposits of such pumice in California, in Inyo, Madera, Mono and Siskiyou counties, but not at present utilized. The material shipped from Inyo and Madera counties in 1915 was the fine-grained, volcanic ash of tuff variety. It is employed in making scouring soaps and polishing powders.
Commercial production of pumice in California was first reported to the State Mining Bureau in 1909, then not again until 1912, since which year there has been a small annual output, as indicated by the following table:
PYRITE. Bibliography: Bulletin 38. Pyrite is extensively mined in several places, and used in the manufacture of sulphuric acid. Two properties in Alameda County and one in Shasta report a total production in 1915 of 92,462 tons, valued at $293,148.
This does not include the vast quantities of pyrite which are otherwise treated for their valuable metal contents.
The total production in California to date is as follows:
SILICA-SAND AND QUARTZ. Bibliography: State Mineralogist Report IX. Bulletins 38, 67. We have combined these materials in the present report, because of the overlapping roles of vein quartz which is mined for use in glass making and as an abrasive, and that of silica sand which, although mainly utilized in glass manufacture, also serves as an abrasive.
It is expected that a certain tonnage of vein quartz will be employed before the end of the current year in the preparation of ferro-silicon and silico-manganese by the electric furnace.
The production of silica in 1915 amounted to 28,904 tons, valued at $34,322, from four properties in Amador County, and one each in Calaveras, Monterey, Riverside and Tulare counties.
Of the above total, 740 tons were of vein quartz, and 28,164 tons, sand.
Practically all the glass sand produced in California occurs as such and needs no grinding. There are various deposits of quartz which could be utilized for glass making, but to date there has been but little commercial production of this class of material.
Glass sand has been produced in the following counties of the state: Alameda, Amador, El Dorado, Los Angeles, Monterey, Orange, Placer, Riverside, San Joaquin, and Tulare. The chief producing centers have been Monterey and Los Angeles counties, the outstanding recent feature having been the entrance of Amador to the list, in 1914. The industry is of small importance, so far, because of the fact that the available deposits are largely not of a grade which will produce first-class glass. Many high-grade deposits are known, but almost without exception transportation facilities are so poor that the owners are unable to compete with the foreign sand which is brought in as ballast and sold at a low price.
Total silica production in California since the inception of the industry, in 1899, is shown below, being mainly glass sand:
SOAPSTONE OR TALC.
. Soapstone—also called talc or steatite—occurs widely distributed throughout California. It is found as a hydration product in the alteration of magnesian silicates, and is often associated with serpentine and actinolite. But few deposits have been proven of especial value to date, although there is an undoubted future for this branch of the mineral industry in the state. Deposits of high grade, white talc, the equal of the imported Italian article, are now being developed in Inyo and San Bernardino counties. It is used in making paper, toilet articles, soap, lubricants, tiling, etc., and for such is ordinarily ground to about 200 mesh before marketing. In this condition it brings $15 per ton and upwards, depending on quality.
There was a total output in 1915 of 1,663 tons, valued at $14,750, from four producers in Inyo County and one each in El Dorado and San Bernardino counties, divided as follows: