aka Beaverhead aka Lemhi Pass aka Bobbitt

The Bloody Dick district has its western boundary on the Continental Divide which forms the Idaho-Montana border, south of the divide of the Big Hole drainage. At the headwaters of Horse Prairie the Bloody Dick district covers a large area that has seen little historic mining. Active mining in the district has been intermittent and none of the mines have been large producers. There are a few isolated mines, but they have little shared developmental history as is common to more productive mining districts. Only two historic mines have been identified, the Puzzler and the Midway. The Puzzler was a small copper mine; little information is available on the Midway. The district is also often connected with the Dark Horse mine and the Monument properties, which although located on Bloody Dick Creek, are generally considered to be part of the Beaverhead and Monument districts, respectively. In the post- World War II era the southern portion of the district, which became known as the Lemhi Pass district, was prospected primarily for thorium. The mines in this sub-district date from the 1950s and 1960s (Geach 1972).

The area is underlain by metamorphosed rocks of the Newland and Spokane formations of the Beltian age. These rocks are quartzites, shales, slates argillites, and impure limestones. In the southern part of the district Tertiary volcanic rocks are exposed.


Sahinen (1935) states that the district is on Bloody Dick Creek about 10 miles west of Brenner. The Puzzler and Monument mines are on Bloody Dick Creek while the Midway is half a mile southeast of Lemhi Pass. The Monument mine is alternately defined as being in the Horse Prairie district (AMRB 1994) and a district unto its own (Geach 1973).

The southern portion of the district has recently been redefined by Geach as the Lemhi Pass mining district. The dividing line is Trail Creek and the sub-district contains the drainages of Frying Pan Creek, Trapper Creek and Bear Creek. This area has only been prospected since the 1950s primarily for thorium and rare earth elements (Geach 1972).

Figure 1 shows the district boundaries as described by Sahinen with the Lemhi Pass sub-district as discussed by Geach.


Dark Horse

Although the Dark Horse mine is located at the head of Bloody Dick Creek, it is generally placed in the Beaverhead district. The mine is near the crest of the Continental Divide; a 2,800 foot tunnel cuts through the mountain so that ore from the Idaho side could be transported to Montana mills on the Gilmore & Pittsburg Railroad. The ore from the mine, primarily chalcopyrite with some bornite, was extracted from quartz fissure veins in sandy slates. While the mine is listed by Winchell as being in the Bloody Dick district, most sources place it in the Beaverhead district to the east (Winchell 1914).


The Puzzler mine is located ten miles from Brenner on Bloody Dick Creek. It opened in 1874, but was not a big producer. Ores were primarily chalcopyrite, bornite, chrysocolla, cuprite and malachite (Winchell 1914).


There is no information available on the Midway.


Abandoned Mine Reclamation Bureau (AMRB)

1994 Mining districts of Montana, Maps 1:100,000 and Map #94-NRIS-129. Compiled and edited by Joel Chavez. Prepared by Montana State Library Natural Resource Information System (NRIS) for Montana Department of State Lands. Helena.

Cope, George F.

1936 "Statistical and Descriptive Report Upon the Mines of Madison County Montana", (Compiled by George F. Cope, Sept. 1888),

Montana School of Mines

, Butte.

Sahinen, Uuno M.

1935 "Mining Districts of Montana", Thesis, Montana School of Mines, Butte.

Winchell, Alexander Newton

1911 "A Theory for the Origin of Graphite as Exemplified in the Graphite Deposit near Dillon, Montana",

Economic Geology

, Vol. 6, pp 218-230.

1914 "Mining Districts of the Dillon Quadrangle, Montana and Adjacent Areas", U. S. Geological Survey, Bulletin 574.

Work Projects Administration (WPA) Mineral Resources Survey

1941 An Alphabetical Index Arranged by Counties, Districts and Mines of Information on Montana Mines from 1867-1940. Montana School of Mines, Butte.