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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Moccasin in Judith Basin County, Montana — The American West (Mountains)
 

Yogo Sapphires

 
 
Yogo Sapphires Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Barry Swackhamer, August 18, 2019
1. Yogo Sapphires Marker
Inscription.  Rumors of gold in the Little Belt Mountains was enough to cause a stampede by hundreds of miners into the Pig-eye Basin and Yogo Gulch southwest of here in the spring of 1879. Although the placer mines soon played out, there was still enough gold in the area to hold the interest of prospectors and settlers for years. In 1895, Jake Hoover and Frank Hobson established a small placer mine on Yogo Gulch. When they cleaned their sluice boxes, they didn't find much gold, but they did find a lot of small glassy pebbles, which they threw away. It wasn't until later that they discovered the stones were high-grade, gem-quality sapphires. Yogo sapphires have a distinctive deep blue cast to them that is found no where else in the world. Commercial mining of the gems began around 1900 and continued until about 1929 when synthetic sapphires became readily available, causing the Montana mines to close down. Since then, sapphire mining has only been sporadic. When combined with Montana gold, Yogo sapphires make a mighty pretty and unique combination for rings, cuff links, pins and similar fancy doo-dads.
 
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Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Industry & CommerceNatural Features.
 
Location. 47° 0.879′ N, 109° 52.357′ W. Marker is near Moccasin, Montana, in Judith Basin County. Marker is on U.S. 87 at milepost 55 near Judith River Road (County Road 315), on the left when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Moccasin MT 59462, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Yogo Sapphires Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Barry Swackhamer, August 18, 2019
2. Yogo Sapphires Marker
Yogo Sapphires image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Gia.edu
3. Yogo Sapphires
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on December 17, 2019. It was originally submitted on December 17, 2019, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California. This page has been viewed 366 times since then and 8 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on December 17, 2019, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California.

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Feb. 24, 2024