Franconia Minerals Corporation
TSX VENTURE : FRA

Franconia Minerals Corporation

July 19, 2005 10:30 ET

Franconia Minerals Corporation Begins Drilling at the Mahoney Zinc Target, New Mexico

SPOKANE, WASHINGTON--(CCNMatthews - July 19, 2005) - FRANCONIA MINERALS CORPORATION (TSX VENTURE:FRA)(OFEX:FRA) announces that drilling has begun at its Mahoney zinc property, located in Luna County, New Mexico. Phase I of Franconia's proposed exploration program will consist of six to eight holes (4,800 to 6,400 feet) of reverse circulation drilling. Phase II will be contingent on the results Phase I and will require five 1,000 ft drill holes. Assay results should be available in August.

The Mahoney zinc property is comprised of 54 unpatented lode mining claims (1,080 acres) surrounding seven privately held patented mining claims (totaling 134 acres). This land package contains several zinc showings and old mine workings. The project is the subject of a proposed Exploration and Option Agreement between Franconia and a major mining company.

Previous exploration activity has not focused on tracing the known mineralization to depth or along strike. Franconia plans to address this with the objective of discovering a high-grade zinc manto-style mineralization of at least 10 million tonnes with grades of about 20% zinc. There are currently no estimates of mineral resource or mineral reserve from the Mahoney property.

Minor zinc and lead production at Mahoney from 1915 to 1948 focused on high-grade zinc and lead oxide vein and manto-style deposits accessed through a number of shallow workings to a maximum depth of 200 feet. Sampling in 2001 returned assays grading from background values (less than 1%) up to 52.4% zinc and 1.5% lead with minor amounts of silver. Preliminary hydrometallurgical testing yielded zinc recoveries of 98%. Assay results from selected grab-samples from the patented claims (all part of Franconia's land package) are shown in the table below. Franconia's president Brian Gavin, an appropriately qualified person under NI 43-101, has reviewed all results.



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(i)Zinc Lead Silver Copper Cadmium
Location (%) (%) (ppm) (ppm) (ppm)
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Mahoney - Comfort
Workings 52.4 0.15 1.6 181 1625
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Mahoney - Comfort
Workings 39.1 0.31 1.2 1379 3432
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Mahoney - Comfort
Workings 36.4 0.33 1.1 969 3026
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Mahoney Central
Workings 24.1 5.87 22.2 1364 183
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Mahoney Central
Workings 15.9 4.00 13.7 333 454
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(i)analytical results for zinc greater than 1.0% are estimates due to
limitations of analytical technique


Franconia Minerals Corporation trades on both the TSX-V in Canada and OFEX in the UK under the symbol FRA. (For additional information see www.franconiaminerals.com.) The directors of Franconia accept responsibility for this announcement. Franconia presently has 22,459,903 shares issued and outstanding.

FRANCONIA MINERALS CORPORATION

Brian Gavin, President

This document, which has been issued by Franconia Minerals Corporation (Franconia), has been approved solely for the purposes of Section 21 of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000, by Lion Capital Corporation Limited (Lion), 4th Floor, 2 Cromwell Place, London SW7 2JE, who is authorised to carry on Investment Business by the Financial Services Authority. Lion, is acting as advisers for Franconia and to no-one else and will not be responsible to anyone other than Franconia for providing protections afforded to customers of Lion for providing advice in relation to any investment made pursuant to this announcement and makes no recommendation for the suitability of any investment, which is the subject of this announcement. FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENT: Although Franconia Minerals Corporation believes many of its properties have promising potential, its properties are in the early stages of exploration. None have yet been shown to contain proven or probable mineral reserves. There can be no assurance that such reserves will be identified on any property, or that, if identified, any mineralization may be economically extracted. Incorporated in Alberta Canada No. 207953670

THE TSX VENTURE EXCHANGE HAS NOT REVIEWED AND DOES NOT ACCEPT RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE ADEQUACY OR ACCURACY OF THIS RELEASE.

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