Gold Occurrences in Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia gold in quartz
Photo by Rob Lavinsky

A gold province is contained in the Meguma Terrane of Nova Scotia that has been worked since the mid-19th century. According to geologists that have studied the Meguma Terrane they have discovered over 300 gold occurrences are deposits found in the Cambro-Ordovician group of rocks found in southern Nova Scotia, Canada. This group of rocks consists of two formations that contain several classic examples of both turbidite and mesothermal veined gold deposits. The first formation is a lower sand dominated flysch that is billed as the Goldenville formation that has been subdivided into several mappable units that is leading to a better understanding of what stratigraphic constraints are imposed on gold mineralization. Detailed investigations of the stratigraphy are still ongoing in all the major gold producing areas. The gold deposits found in the Steve's Road-Beaverbank long with the Mt. Uniacke are the major gold producing formations in Nova Scotia having produced over 47,000,000 g of gold in the past.

In the gold producing areas the Meguma rocks display a variable deformation ranging from into upright gently to moderately double plunging folds having multiple cleavages. Gold in the Meguma is divided into three major groups: 1 hi-grade that averages up to 15 g per ton; 2 low-grade averaging from 0.5 to 4 g per ton and 3g per ton gold that is hosted in meta-sandstone. A combination of either two can also occur.

Most of the historical production of 47 million g has come from hi-grade deposits found less then 200 m from the surface. The majority of the gold has been produced from a variety of veins ranging from bedding concordant, to fissure and stockwork veins. The veins were emplaced by the migration of metamorphic fluids during the late Acadian Orogeny of the Devonian. The Meguma is a good example of

Most of the gold in the Meguma is found in two formations: the Halifax formation and the Goldenville formation where it occurs in quartz veins and is often associated with the mineral magnetite.

The erosion products of the Meguma are found in the coal measures of Nova Scotia where it might be found in conglomerate as fossilized placer deposits.  Coal measures can be found in a belt extending roughly from New Glasgow under the Gulf of St. Lawrence to Glace Bay on Cape Breton Island.  Conglomerate in this area deserves a close look.