updated 3/16/2011 7:17:49 AM ET 2011-03-16T11:17:49

KELLOGG, Idaho, March 16, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- New Jersey Mining Company (OTCBB:NJMC) and Marathon Gold Corporation (TSX:MOZ) are pleased to announce the initial results from their core drilling program underway at the Golden Chest mine in Murray, Idaho. All drill intersections in this release are undiluted.

Surface core drilling through the Idaho vein, in an area north of the current reserve, returned 33.0 grams per tonne (g/t) gold over 2.6 meters (m) true thickness including 0.9 m of 62.6 g/t in GC-11-2. Visible gold was observed in this Idaho vein intercept. Five surface drill holes have been completed to date with each intercepting the Idaho vein, and extending the vein to the north and down-dip into areas where no previous drilling has taken place. Assays are pending for holes GC-11-3 to GC-11-5.

An underground drilling program is also underway at the project about 400 meters north of the surface drilling in an area of the mine known as the Katie-Dora area. Drilling here in GCU-11-2 returned 103.4 g/t over 0.8 meters through the Katie vein. The underground drilling is focused on exploring for high-grade ore shoots in the northern part of the mine where existing workings provide excellent access to explore the Idaho fault corridor. 

Highlights:

  • GC-11-2 returned 33.0 g/t gold over 2.6 m (true thickness) in an area north of the existing reserve and down-dip of the main level – the No. 3 level.
  • GC-11-1 returned 6.25 g/t gold over a 4.4 m (true thickness) further north of the GC-11-2 intercept, and within the 230m gap between the Idaho vein reserve and the Katie-Dora area where no previous drilling has occurred.
  • A hanging wall vein above the Idaho vein was intercepted by both GC-11-1 and GC-11-2, grading 4.90 g/t gold over 1.3 m and 7.83 g/t gold over 1.1 m, respectively.
  • GCU-11-2 intercepted 103.4 g/t gold over 0.8 meters only 5.9 meters from the existing ramp.
  • GC-11-3 intercepted the Idaho vein about 158 meters vertically below the No. 3 level and is the deepest intercept to date on the Idaho vein. Assays are pending.

Table 1 – Initial Drill Results at the Golden Chest Mine

DDH Vein From(m) To (m) Core Width (m) True Thickness (m) Gold (g/t)
GC-11-1 H/W 56.1 57.4 1.3 unknown (1) 4.90
  Idaho 165.7 170.3 4.6 4.4 6.25
GC-11-2 H/W 55.4 56.5 1.1 unknown (1) 7.83
  Idaho 152.3 154.9 2.6 2.6 33.00
GCU-11-2 Katie 5.9 6.7 0.8 unknown (1) 103.4

(1) True thickness cannot be calculated until more vein intersections are drilled.

Grant Brackebusch P.E., Vice President of New Jersey Mining Co. commented, "The gold grade of GC-11-2 is the highest drilled to date on the Idaho vein, and both intercepts of the Idaho vein are significant as they indicate that the vein is extending at depth in a mining district known for its deep-seated orebodies."

The Golden Chest Mine

The Golden Chest Mine is located two miles east of Murray, Idaho within the gold belt of the Coeur d'Alene Mining District. Golden Chest LLC operates the mine and is owned 50% by NJMC and 50% by MOZ. A surface and underground drilling program of at least 10,000 meters is planned for 2011 with the goal of producing a NI 43-101 compliant resource estimate for the property.

The mine has over 3,900 meters of underground workings and has the permits necessary to drill and operate on the deposit. The property includes 24 patented mining claims and 21 unpatented mining claims covering 206 hectares. The patented claims that cover the mine workings have mineral rights and surface rights enabling the JV to work easily on the mine property.

Gold mineralization can be found along at least 1,500 meters of strike length along the Idaho fault on the property. The veins in the north end of the mine were historically mined at higher grades, estimated to have been 17 g/t gold, whereas the Idaho vein in the south end of the mine was thicker but lower in grade (175 m on the main level grading 6.71 g/t gold). The lowest major level of the Golden Chest mine is the No. 3 level, which is near the valley bottom elevation. The drilling to-date has only probed the Idaho vein about 160 meters below this level in a district known for hosting orebodies that outcrop on surface and continue at depth for 2,500 meters. 

The Idaho vein has an SEC compliant proven and probable underground reserve of 242,000 tonnes grading 5.10 g/t Au containing 40,000 ounces (ozs) of gold. The Idaho vein outcrops and a measured and indicated open pit resource of 1.2 Mt grading 1.35 g/t Au has been estimated with an additional inferred resource of 5.5 Mt grading 0.98 g/t gold.

There are two drills working on site, one on surface and one underground. The surface drill will move up slope to drill the open pit resource in the Idaho vein when the snow is gone sometime in the second quarter. The underground drill will continue to drill in the northern half of the mine where there is high grade potential.

All of the samples were analyzed by American Analytical of Osburn, Idaho, an ISO certified laboratory. Samples were analyzed using lead collection fire assay with a gravimetric finish. 

About New Jersey Mining Company:

New Jersey Mining Company is involved in exploring for and developing gold, silver and base metal resources in the Coeur d'Alene Mining District of northern Idaho. New Jersey Mining Company has a portfolio of mineral properties in the Coeur d'Alene Mining District including the New Jersey Mine which includes a fully-permitted flotation mill and a concentrate leach plant.

This release contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended that are intended to be covered by the safe harbor created by such sections. Such statements are based on good faith assumptions that New Jersey Mining Company believes are reasonable but which are subject to a wide range of uncertainties and business risks that could cause actual results to differ materially from future results expressed, projected or implied by such forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause actual results to differ from those anticipated are discussed in New Jersey Mining Company's periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The United States Securities and Exchange Commission permits mining companies, in their filings with the SEC, to disclose only those mineral deposits that a company can economically and legally extract or produce. We use certain terms, such as "measured," "indicated," and "inferred resources," that the SEC guidelines strictly prohibit us from including in our filing with the SEC. U.S. investors are cautioned not to assume that any or all of measured, indicated or inferred resources are economically or legally mineable or that these resources will ever be converted into reserves. U.S. investors are urged to consider closely the disclosure in our Form 10-K and Form 10-Q.

CONTACT: Grant Brackebusch, Vice President
         Phone: 1.208.783.1032
         Email: ir@newjerseymining.com
         Website: www.newjerseymining.com

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