The northeastern slope of the Santa Catalina Mountains has a long history of sporadic gold production. The country is rugged, cut by deep canyons including Southern Belle, Campo Bonito and Pepper Sauce, all running parallel and eastward to the San Pedro Valley.
Gold and silver have been found in the veins along the contacts of dikes in the granites. Veins carrying gold, silver and tungsten have been found in sedimentary rock between the contact points of granite and sedimentaries comprised of slates, sandstones, limestones, quartzite and conglomerates.
Located at the northern end of the Santa Catalina Mountains, the town of Oracle was founded in 1880. It was christened after the nearby Oracle Mine, so named by its claimant, Canadian prospector Albert Weldon, who sailed around Cape Horn on a ship named “The Oracle” in 1875.
The area was a focal point for mining and ranches including Acadia and American Flag. With prominent outcrops of rounded granite and gold bearing sediments, the area has drawn prospectors in search of mineral wealth similar to other areas in the Santa Catalina Mountains including the Iron Door Mine and lost Nine Mile City (Nueva Mia Ciudad).
The earliest mining ventures around Oracle date to George B. Brajevich and John Ivancovich, who prospected five miles southeast of the town in the Catalinas during the 1870s.