Monday, November 22, 2010

November Field Trip to Old Hachita

submitted by Kyle Meredith

Like last month's trip to Tres Hermanas, we had another small group heading down to Old Hachita to look for turquoise. It was an outstanding day, even with the breeze that picked up when we got there. I didn't look at everyone's booty (treasure, that is), but if someone didn't find anything, they weren't trying. 
True, most of the obvious specimens were quite small, but with not much effort you could pick up a choice nugget or two. Josh and I found several worthy pieces, and as soon as we find a place to buy waterglass (sodium silicate) we're ready to stabilize what we found—small pieces for mosaics and larger ones for jewelry.
After lunch, most of us headed back toward home with a couple of stops, one at the old American National Mine ruins, and one at the ghost town of Old Hachita. (Of course it was just “Hachita” until a post office was established at “new” Hachita in 1902. Clear?)
In addition to being known for turquoise since the 1870s, other minerals were mined including silver, gold, and copper. It makes me wonder if there wasn't some politics involved in extending Grant County down to include what is called the Eureka (the original name for Hachita--that is Old Hachita--uh, you understand) Mining District. 
And that concludes the tenure of Kyle and Josh as Field Trip Coordinators. There will be no field trip in December, then in January Ansel takes the reins. I hear he has eight (out of 10) field trips lined up already for 2011. It goes to show he's a lot more organized than we ever were. We're very grateful that Ansel stepped up, and have complete confidence in his abilities. And remember, if he ever leads the group down the wrong road, well, it's in the job description. Good luck to Ansel, and good fun for all!

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