Remnants of the Russell Mine, one of Montgomery County’s largest gold mines, are located near Badin, a short hike into Uwharrie National Forest off Coggins Mine Road near Big Creek. Panning and prospecting aren’t allowed at the site but interested parties may hike down and explore the area around the old mine shaft. It is not advised to enter the shaft.
Past operations took place from 1882 to 1926. Production size when active was considered to be small. Mine operations consist of underground workings. There is one known shaft and subsurface depth reaches a maximum of 167 meters (548 feet).
The ore mined is composed of pyrite, gold and chalcopyrite with waste material consisting primarily of sericite, chlorite and calcite. The ore body has a lenticular or lens shaped form 21 meters (68 feet) long and 6 meters (19 feet) thick.
The host rock in this area is argillite from the Early Cambrian epoch 521.00 to 509.00 million years ago. The Piedmont Upland of the Appalachian Highlands characterize the geomorphology of the surrounding area.