Dr. Louis Jacobs took his GEOL 2320 Southwestern Environments: A Geologic Approach class to the Harding pegmatite mine near Dixon, New Mexico. The area was mined from about 1900 intermittently until 1958 as source for various metals such as beryllium, lithium and tantalum. The property has since been donated to the University of New Mexico and is preserved as a mineral collecting locality as well as a unique outdoor geologic laboratory.
After abandoment of all mining activities 1978 the whole property was donated to the University of New Mexico, which still owns it today and carry out geological research in the Harding area. The mine and the surrounding is therefore a protected geological heritage site, which is still open to all geologically interested parties.