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File Created: 24-Jul-1985 by BC Geological Survey (BCGS)
Last Edit:  09-Jun-2022 by Karl A. Flower (KAF)

Summary Help Help

NMI 092L3 Tlc2
BCGS Map 092L014
Status Past Producer NTS Map 092L03W
Latitude 050º 08' 05'' UTM 09 (NAD 83)
Longitude 127º 17' 55'' Northing 5554996
Easting 621589
Commodities Pyrophyllite, Alunite, Silica Deposit Types H09 : Hydrothermal alteration clays-Al-Si
Tectonic Belt Insular Terrane Wrangell
Capsule Geology

The Morris occurrence is located near the northwest end of a northwest trending peninsula on the southwestern shore of Kashutl Inlet and northwest of Monteith Bay.

The rocks hosting the Morris occurrence are west striking dacitic to andesitic fragmental flows of the Lower Jurassic Bonanza Group. Quartz diorite porphyry and andesitic dikes of the Lower to Middle Jurassic Island Plutonic Suite intrude the volcanics. Pronounced quartz-sericite, quartz-alunite or quartz-pyrophyllite alteration occur along the contact zones.

Pyrophyllite is prominent on Lots 988 (Morris) and 989 (Deertrail), occurring as compact dense masses ranging from cream, white, pink or light grey to dark bluish grey when pyrite is present. Minor limonite imparts a yellow to reddish brown stain on weathered surfaces.

In thin section pyrophyllite flakes are about 0.01 millimetre in diameter and are readily crushed to a smooth fine powder. On the Deertrail showing, the ore is white to grey and contains 71 per cent pyrophyllite and 20 per cent quartz. An analysis of the showing returned 71.88 per cent silica, 23.56 per cent aluminum, 0.14 per cent ferric oxide, 0.36 per cent soda, 0.43 per cent potash, 3.24 per cent H2O greater than 105 degrees Celsius (CANMET Report 803, pages 53 to 135).

Small shipments of both pyrophyllite and alunite have been made from the area. Pyrophyllite was extracted (probably mostly from the neighbouring Monteith occurrence, 092L 117), between 1910 and 1914. Several hundred tonnes of ore were mixed with shale and used as a refractory for sewer pipe and fire-proofing material. It was also used as a polishing powder, soap and cleanser.

A report on samples taken from a stockpile in Victoria stated that "it burns steel-hard at Cone 1, and shows good refractiveness", and "is unsuited to replace foliated talc" (Geological Survey of Canada Memoir 24, page 148).

Several hundred tonnes of ore were produced in 1937 (Open File 1988-19, page 7) but exact production figures are not available.

In 1913, Clapp estimated 363,000 tonnes of pyrophyllite ore occurred in the 1.2 hectares on the Deertrail and Morris claims (Geological Survey of Canada Summary Report 1913, page 123).

The deposit was examined during World War II as a possible source of paper filler, and testing determined it to be a "highly satisfactory ingredient of whiteware batches for both slip-cast and clay process tiles, electrical insulators and tableware (Minister of Mines Annual Report 1947, page 223).

Drilling in 1983 encountered mostly brecciated volcanics with strongly silicified zones of alunite and pyrophyllite with varying proportions of quartz and abundant pyrite (Assessment Report 11374).

In 2017, nine select samples of alunite-rich rocks from the occurrence area yielded from 4.0 to 11.8 per cent aluminum, 5.64 to 29.75 per cent silica and 2.66 to 11.76 per sulphur (Assessment Report 36887).

Work History

For a complete exploration history of the area see At Monteith (MINFILE 092L 117), Sockeye (MINFILE 092L 246), Sic (MINFILE 092L 276) and Monteith Bay (MINFILE 092L 343) occurrences.

EMPR AR 1914-377; 1920-198; 1947-223
EMPR ASS RPT 4539, 8279, *11374, *12681, 26312, 33796, 35640, 36367, *36887, 38492
EMPR EXPL 1980-269; 1983-332; 1984-240
EMPR GEM 1973-256,552
EMPR OF *1988-19, pp. 7,87-89
GSC BULL 30, p. 38
GSC MAP 4-1974; 255A; 1552A
GSC MEM 24, p. 148
GSC OF 9; 170; 463
GSC P 69-1A; 70-1A; 72-44; 74-8
GSC SUM RPT 1913, p. 109; 1920A
CANMET RPT 803, p. 131
GCNL #96, 1983
Carson, D.J.T., (1968): Metallogenic Study of Vancouver Island with emphasis on the Relationship of Plutonic Rocks to Mineral Deposits, Ph.D. Thesis, Carleton University, Ottawa
Falconbridge File