The Peralta-Fish Map

Many maps have surfaced that indicate the location of the mines and the “missing” Mining District.  There was a surface pit phase and an underground phase in the District.

The arguable “Holy Grail” of maps for Lost Dutchman or Peralta Mines searchers is the “Peralta-Fish” map. A photo of one version of this map is shown in Dr. Glover’s excellent book, “Treasure Tales of the Superstitions”. Linda Peralta is cited as the origin of the map. At first appearance, this must be the purest version in existence.

But, there is another version of the Peralta-Fish map that was copied by the late Tom Kollenborn and is shown in “Treasure Maps of the Superstitions” dated 1985. It is not known where he copied this from. Full credit is his.  This is it:


Peralta-Fish Map of Tom Kollenborn

There are some differences between the two maps that would indicate that the Kollenborn version is the more accurate:

• The Kollenborn version does not say “Eduardo” above “Manuel Peralta” like the Linda Peralta version. It says “Estiado”. This is not a complete Spanish word. However, there is a Spanish word “Estimado” meaning “esteemed”; It appears the letter “m” is missing by mistake . Because of the location of the word, “Estimado” should probably be the original word instead of “Eduardo”.
• The date on the Linda Peralta version is 1848, and the date on the Kollenborn version is 1846.
• The concentric circles of dots shown on the Kollenborn version near the Salt River have devolved into a random patch of X’s and dots on the Linda Peralta version. It would seem logical that the circles would devolve by copying instead of vice-versa.
• The concentric circles shown on the Kollenborn version are further away from the Salt River than the same area on the Linda Peralta version. On the Linda Peralta version it appears that a placer? is indicated, and it will be shown that this is not the case.
• The large dark triangle(arrow?) on the Kollenborn version is tiny and almost unrecognizable on the Linda Peralta version.

The style of the Spanish maps (Burbridge,  Peralta-Fish,  Stone maps) is confusing at first because the outlying features, be it “El Sombrero”, Superstition Mountain, the Salt River, camps, etc., are brought in close to the smaller-scaled, “zoomed” area of the mines. This clever method is used so that a second, smaller-scale map is not necessary. The Peralta-Fish map is depicting the mines generally located  between the Salt River, Superstition Mountain, and El Sombrero.

So, assuming the Kollenborn version is the truer version, what are the concentric circles of dots? Using Google Earth, the area ¾ mile northwest of “Cerro Negra”(where most of the mines are located on the Peralta-Fish map) at the same bearing as shown on Peralta-Fish Map was investigated. Lo and behold, the segments of 2 rings are seen (looking due east):


The area was investigated on the ground, and the red rings are comprised of hematite that is untouched by a prospect pit, and there are many shorter segments that cannot be seen with Google Earth or from one spot on the ground. Here is a photo of sections of the rings from the ground from an elevated position (note there is large silica mound in the center of the rings on the right side of the photograph):


Here is another even closer photo of a ring (there is El Sombrero again in the background). Note: Weavers Needle looks like a sombrero in a very narrow, short area.


These hematite rings are located in a diatreme with a very deep origin. There is a “tuff ring” surrounding part of the diatreme, and this photo shows the rock contorted by extreme pressure at depth:


This is piece of the same breccia with smaller clasts that has been sawn:

Maar Diatreme Breccia with Migmatite

In summary, there is little doubt that there were indeed 2 mining areas, the southern and northern, like the stories that have been passed down. The Peralta Fish map matches the location of the Google Earth diatreme and the gossan rings exactly.  The northern group would have processed their ore at Government Well where there was abundant, shallow ground water.  The southern group would have used First Water canyon where there was often flowing water much of the year, they had a dam, and there was abundant ground water also.  Note: the gossan rings also assayed high in Lithium.  Note: the below photo and diagram was assembled before it was known that there is an IOCG deposit covered by a FIELD of silica mounds.  The important features in the photo is the location of the Maar diatreme and the volcanic neck.

Below can be seen the location of the suspected pit mine and underground mine that were located at the diatreme.   The pit mine is located in the wash and the underground mine is suspected to be accessed from a portal located on the north side of the wash where it accessed the underside of a silica mound in the diatreme.

The Suspected Mines
Cerro Negro from the “Tiny Hole”