GSA Connects 2021 in Portland, Oregon

Paper No. 219-5
Presentation Time: 9:00 AM-1:00 PM


ZUNIGA, Eduardo1, ARRIBAS, Antonio1 and GOODELL, Philip2, (1)Department of Geoscience, University of Texas at El Paso, 500 W University Ave,, El Paso, TX 79968, (2)Geological Sciences, University of Texas at El Paso, 500 W University Ave, El Paso, TX 79968

The Terlingua Quicksilver district was discovered around 1880’s, and was a mercury producing district from 1900 through 1946. The most productive years were during World War one and Two. Many studies followed the discovery of the district. Interest in the area increased as the need for mercury ore grew for the war efforts. After 1946 most mercury was mined, and the demand for mercury declined which led to the Terlingua Quicksilver district being abandoned. From 1900-1946 the Terlingua Quicksilver District (TQD) produced 150,000 flasks of quicksilver, 80% came from three mines: the Rainbow-Chisos, Mariposa, and Study butte mines. The structural controls of the Mercury mineralization within these mines are breccia pipes and fractures which allowed for igneous intrusions. Many other critical minerals can be associated with Mercury. I will be assessing the potential for critical minerals and Rare Earth Elements in the Terlingua District by using chemical analysis of rock samples collected from the three primary mines. A map showing the concentrations will be compiled, which can be used for future surveys and a potential for a renewed interest in the Terlingua Quicksilver District.