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´╗┐Title: All about the Klondyke gold mines
Author: Knox, J. Armoy, Pratt, J. G.
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.

*** Start of this LibraryBlog Digital Book "All about the Klondyke gold mines" ***

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[Illustration: Decoration]








Sitka appears at the southeast corner of this map, and northeast of it
is Juneau, the usual fitting out place for miners going to the Yukon.

The arrows show the route of miners bound for the Yukon. Steamboats can
carry them from Juneau as far as Ty-a. Then they must pack their loads
through Chilkoot Pass and boat them through a chain of lakes and down
the Lewis River to the Yukon. It is about 700 miles from Juneau to the
Klondyke River.

The two other most important centres of Yukon mining were Forty Mile
Creek, where there were two big mining camps, Forty Mile and Fort
Cudahy, and Circle City. All these camps have now been practically
deserted in the great rush for the Klondyke.

_The ever reliable and always trustworthy New York Sun publishes the map
as given above._


Map of the Location of the Yukon Mine               5

Gold--The Search for It, Past and Present           9

Klondyke and California--1849-1897                  9

The Geology of the Yukon                           10

The "Mother Lode" and the Glacial Deposits         10

The Great Gold Discovery--How the First
  Authentic News Reached Us                        13

The Gold Fever Spreading--The Stories of
  Some Miners                                      14

Millions of Gold Panned Out--Poor
  Yesterday--Rolling in Wealth To-day              16

Arrival of the Second Treasure Ship from
  the Klondyke                                     19

A Few of the Prizes Won                            21

Some Grapes of Eschol Stories--Richer than
  Sinbad's Valley of Diamonds                      22

The Stampede for the Gold--Thousands Join
  the Exodus                                       24

Where the Gold is Found--How It Is Reached
  and Mined                                        26

Some Large Nuggets--There Are More Where
  They Came From                                   29

Millions Upon Millions in Sight--William
  Stanley's Graphic Story                          29

How to Get There--Choice of Two Routes             32

From San Francisco to the Mines--Ocean Route       34

Perils of the Trip--Encounters with Ice and
  Snow in the Passes                               35

The Canadian Government's Attitude--An
  International Question                           38

Dawson Not a Tough Town--The Civilization of
  a Mining Camp                                    39

Fears of Starvation--Danger of Going to the
  Mines Without Food Supply                        41

Cost of Living in Dawson                           43

The Climate and the Mosquitoes--Short
  Summer--Heat and Cold Contrasts                  44

Capital Required by Miners--Some Things
  Indispensable in an Outfit                       45

A Woman's Outfit                                   47

Valuable Expert Advice--A Mining Engineer's
  Warnings and Suggestions                         47

The New York Journal Expedition to Klondyke        50

Sailors Get Gold Craze--Desert Their Ships in
  Alaskan Ports to Dig for Fortunes                50

Only Three Deaths in a Year--The Healthiest
  Region in the World Is the Klondyke              51

Canadian Mining Laws--Regulations Imposed by
  the Dominion Upon Placer Mining                  52

Some Things Worth Knowing                          55

Explanatory and Important                          58




Since the dawn of history man has attached to gold a value greater than
that of any of the metals. Indeed, the value of every product of Mother
Earth, of the fields, the forest or the mine has been fixed by its worth
in gold. Hence the quest of gold has inspired mankind to acts of
heroism, to a search for knowledge, and to a resignation to hardship and
privation that have given to the explorer and prospector a character
scarcely second to that of the heroes of the battlefield or the leaders
of the world's senates. The history of the human race, even the record
of the discovery of continents, is largely a history of the search for
the yellow treasure in its hiding places in the earth or among the
elements of Nature. Columbus' voyage, which gave to the world America,
with its California and now its Klondyke, was but a search for gold.
Chemistry is only the offspring of alchemy, and while adventurous
spirits were daring the main, suffering the torments of the tropics and
the gloom of the wilderness, the hut and the cave of the hermit--man's
first laboratories--were the scene of other labors and privations, and
all in the search for gold, gold, whether in the ground, the water or
the air. But it has remained to our own day to witness this quest
extended to the region of eternal snow and rewarded among the glacial
mountains of the frozen North.


1849 AND 1897.

As we are inclined to measure everything by comparison the discoveries
in the Klondyke region and the already world-wide excitement created
thereby naturally recall the discovery of gold in California, the
memorable year '49, and suggests a comparison of the facts and
conditions existing in and surrounding the two regions and the
development of their respective resources.

In '49 California was scarcely nearer to the civilization of the then
existing States of the Union than Klondyke is to-day. Though the
climate of California, when reached, was salubrious in the extreme, the
hardships of an overland trip of more than three thousand miles or the
scarcely less trying voyage "around the Horn," were quite as apt to
deter the "tenderfoot" from attempting to seek fortune among the Sierras
as are the extreme cold and possible privations that must be considered
by the gold-hunters among the Alaskan mountains. But there were brave
spirits in '49, who, defying every danger, flocked to the promised land,
and realized not only their wildest dreams of wealth, but laid the
foundation of one of the proudest among our galaxy of States. The
population of the country by the census of 1850, a year later, was but
20,000,000. If there were thousands among those 20,000,000 who poured
into California in '49, how much greater the influx into the region of
the Klondyke will be if the same ratio of enterprise and adventure
characterizes the 70,000,000 Americans of the present day. The first
news of the discovery of gold in California was months in getting to
"the States," and it was even months later before the gold fever had
become really epidemic in the East. With the telegraph and cable of
to-day the news from the Yukon has already encircled the globe and
quickened the pulse of mankind in every land and latitude.

There have been gold excitements at stated periods from the Eldorado of
the Spaniards down to Johannisburg, but none that has arisen so suddenly
and spread so rapidly as that created by the tidings from Klondyke. Nor
would it seem that the future of this excitement can be even
conjectured. And perhaps the reason for this may be found in the fact
that instead of the fables of an Eldorado, the reports from the Yukon
have been shewn to be authentic and trustworthy.



Under the caption "How the Gold Came to Klondyke Placers," Professor
George Frederick Wright, of Oberlin College, author of "Man in the
Glacial Period" and other geological works, has contributed to the New
York Journal an interesting article in which he says:

"The discovery of gold in large quantities on the Yukon River is by no
means unexpected. Eleven years ago, the last word I heard as I left
Juneau was the pledge of a returning tourist to meet his friend the next
Summer and prospect in the Yukon region.

"The great mass of gold-bearing quartz at the Treadwell mine, near
Juneau, was what might be expected, and at the same time what might be
the limitation of the supply. For more than ten years that mine has
furnished more than a million dollars of gold annually, but it is not
like ordinary quartz mines. It is rather a great, isolated mass of
quartz with gold disseminated all through it. While its worth is great,
its length is limited.

"Little is known about the geology of the Yukon River, where the
Klondyke mines have been found. Being placer mines, the gold may have
been transported many miles. The means of transportation are both
glaciers and rivers. The Klondyke region is on the north side of the St.
Elias Alps. Alaska was never completely covered with glacial ice. The
glaciers flowed both north and south from these summits. Dawson and
Professor Russell both report well defined terminal moraines across the
upper Yukon Valley. The source of the Klondyke gold, therefore, is from
the South.

"Placer mines originate in the disintegration of gold-bearing quartz
veins, or mass like that at Juneau. Under sub-aerial agencies these
become dissolved. Then the glaciers transport the material as far as
they go, when the floods of water carry it on still further. Gold, being
heavier than the other materials associated with it, lodges in the
crevasses or in the rough places at the bottom of the streams. So to
speak, nature has stamped and "panned" the gravel first and prepared the
way for man to finish the work. The amount of gold found in the placer
mines is evidence not so much, perhaps, of a very rich vein as of the
disintegration of a very large vein.

"The "mother lode" has been looked for in vain in California, and
perhaps will be so in Alaska. But it exists somewhere up the streams on
which the placer mines are found. The discovery of gold in glacial
deposits far away from its native place is familiar to American

"I have encountered placer mines in glacial deposits near Aurora, in
Southeastern Indiana; in Adams County, in Southern Ohio, and near
Titusville, in Western Pennsylvania, where, I see, there is a new
excitement. But in all these cases the gold had been brought several
hundred miles by glacial ice from Canada or the region about Lake
Superior. These gold mines were near the edge of the glacial region,
where there had been much assorting action of both ice and water.

"It is evident, however, that in Alaska the transportation of the gold
has not gone so far. The difficulties of this transportation into the
Klondyke region and the shortness of the season will continue to be
great drawbacks to working the mines. The pass north of Chilcoot is
7,000 feet above sea level and but a few miles back from the ocean.
There is no possibility of a road over it. But from Taku Inlet, near
Juneau, readier access can be had. This route was followed by Schwatka
and Mr. Hayes, of the United States Geological Survey, a few years ago,
and has been partially surveyed with reference to a railroad line, and
reported to be available. The only other way is by a river which is open
to navigation only a short time each year and is a great way around.

"The general climatic conditions on the north side of the mountains are
much better than those on the south side. On the south side the snowfall
is enormous, but on the north side the air is dryer. Schwatka and Hayes
went in the Summer down the Yukon Valley about to the Klondyke region,
and from there struck off west, passing to the north of Mount St. Elias
and down the Copper River. They had dry weather all the time, in which
camping was pleasant, while Russell the same season was driven back by
inclement weather from ascending St. Elias on the south side. It is
therefore not impossible that explorations southwest of the present gold
fields may be carried on with comparative ease. But at present that
whole region is bare of means of subsistence.

"There is imminent danger that many will get in there before Winter with
insufficient means and starve. An English missionary and his wife have
been in that general region for many years, and report the people as
being so near the verge of starvation that they do not dare both to
Winter in the same village lest they should produce a famine. So they
live in separate villages during the Winter. Eventually the reindeer
which Sheldon Jackson is introducing into the lower Yukon region will be
available both for transportation and food, being much superior to dogs
in that they can procure their own food. But for the present every
necessity must either be packed over the Chilcoot Pass or brought around
by way of the Yukon.

"As to the ultimate yield of the mines or the prospect of finding more,
we have nothing but conjecture to go upon. The geologists who have
visited the region were not the ones who discovered the gold. What the
prospectors have found points to more. The unexplored region is immense.
The mountains to the south are young, having been elevated very much
since the climax of the glacial period. With these discoveries and the
success in introducing reindeer Alaska bids fair to support a population
eventually of several millions. The United States must hold on to her
treaty rights with Great Britain for the protection of our interests
there. If England accomplishes her unreasonable designs she would shut
us off from all communication with the Klondyke region except by way of
the Yukon."



Placer mining had been going on at Circle City and the settlement of
Forty Mile for some time, and news of the wonderful productiveness of
the mines there had reached the United States, but the gold fever did
not become pronounced until the arrival in San Francisco, on the 14th of
July of this year, of the steamer Excelsior with forty miners and gold
dust valued at over $500,000.

These forty miners were the first to bring the story of the almost
fabulous richness of the new Klondyke mines near the Upper Yukon. One of
these miners, J. C. Hestwood, who brought home $10,000 worth of gold as
the result of two months' work, had this story to tell:

"Circle City and Forty Mile have suffered the usual fate of mining camps
which have petered out, only these camps have not petered out. When gold
was found in such astonishing quantities on the tributaries of the
Klondyke the whole population of those camps moved bodily to the
junction of the Klondyke and Yukon rivers, where Dawson City is
established. This district, the richest placer country in the world, was
discovered by an old hunter named McCormick, who has a squaw for a wife
and several half-breed children. McCormick went up in the spring of 1896
to the mouth of the Klondyke to fish, as salmon weighing ninety pounds
are caught where this stream meets the Yukon. The salmon didn't run as
usual and McCormick, hearing from the Indians of rich placers nearby
where gold could be washed out in a frying pan, started in to prospect.

"Near what is now Dawson City he struck very rich pay dirt in a side
hill. As soon as news of his discovery spread men from Circle City and
Forty Mile rushed in. The richest claims are in Bonanza Creek, which
empties into the Klondyke three miles above Dawson City. There are three
claims in that district, each 500 feet long, extending clear across the
creek on which it is located. No one can file an additional claim until
he has recorded his abandonment of his old claim.

"In the adjoining Bunker district there are 200 claims. The two
districts have been well prospected, but further up the Klondike is much
territory which has never been travelled over.

"Old miners declared that the north side of the Yukon was worthless, so
no prospecting was done until McCormick started in. There is no
claim-jumping, as the Canadian laws are rigid and well enforced. The
rich pay dirt is only struck near bed rock and this generally lies from
eighteen to twenty-five feet below the surface.

"The method of mining is to remove the surface mass, which is eighteen
inches thick, and then build a fire which burns all night. In the
morning the gravel is shaved down about two feet. This is shovelled out,
and another fire is built, and in this slow and laborious way the ground
is removed to bedrock. This work can be carried on all winter, except
when the mercury falls below 60 degrees.

"Dawson City is a booming town of about 3,000 inhabitants and is growing
every week. Provisions were scarce and dear last winter, and all
supplies are costly. An ordinary 75-cent pocket knife sells for $4, and
shoes bring from $6 to $8. A dog-sledgeload of eggs was brought in last
winter from Juneau. About half were spoiled, but the whole lot sold
readily at $4 per dozen. Flour sold as high as $1 a pound."

Mr. Hestwood showed many small nuggets from the new Bonanza Creek
district, where his mine is situated. The gold is the color of brass,
and is worth $16 to $17 an ounce. It isn't as pure gold as found
elsewhere on the Yukon.



The stories of the returned miners, telegraphed from San Francisco all
over the country and to the ends of the earth on the evening of the 14th
of July, were what started the gold fever, and the craze to go in search
of the precious metal that is now raging from one end of the country to
the other. Soon after the arrival of the Excelsior, the half million
dollars worth of yellow dust, which ranged in size from a hazelnut to
fine bird-shot and kernels of sand, was poured out on the counter at
Selby's smelting works on Montgomery street and then shovelled with
copper scoops into the great melting pot. Those who saw the gold in one
heap said no such spectacle had been seen since the days of '49, when
miners used to come down from the placer districts and change their gold
for $20 pieces.

The luckiest of these miners are Mr. and Mrs. T. S. Lippey, who left
here in April, 1896. They brought back $60,000. They went in by way of
Juneau over the divide, and Mrs. Lippey was the first woman to go over
this trail. She is a small, wiry woman, with skin tanned to the color of
sole leather. She seemed none the worse for the hardships of Yukon life.
She is a good rifle shot, and brought with her the antlers of a moose
which she had shot.

Hollinshead and Stewart, two miners, who had been at work for a year,
had 1,500 ounces, worth about $25,000. Other tenderfeet had done better,
for in a few weeks some of them had cleaned up from $10,000 to $15,000.
Several of the men had bought claims on time, paying a small sum down
and agreeing to pay all the way from $10,000 to $25,000 in three to six
months. Most of them cleaned up enough gold in a month to pay for their
claims and still have a good sum left over.

When the men arrived in San Francisco they found the United States mint
closed for the day, and so they carried their sacks of gold to the
office of Selby's smelting works. They were weather-beaten and roughly
dressed, but the spectators forgot their appearance when they began to
produce sacks of gold dust ranging from $1,000 to $3,000 in value. Some
of the sacks were regular buckskin bags, well made; others were of
canvas, black and grimy from long handling with dirty fingers. As fast
as the bags were weighed they were ripped open with a sharp knife and
the contents were poured out on the broad counter. Then some of the
miners produced from bundles and coat pockets glass fruit jars and jelly
tumblers filled with gold dust and covered with writing paper, carefully
secured with twine. It seems that the supply of gold bags ran out and
this was the only way to bring the treasure down.

When all the gold dust was poured out it made a nice heap, on which the
spectators gazed as though fascinated; but the smelting men calmly
scraped it up and cast the yellow dust into a big pot, which was wheeled
into the smelting room.

A letter from one of the officials of the Alaska Commercial Company, at
Circle City, gives this account of the great rush to the new diggings:

"The excitement on the river is indescribable, and the output of the new
Klondyke district is almost beyond belief. Men who had nothing last fall
are now worth a fortune. One man has worked forty square feet of his
claim and is going out with $40,000 in dust. One-quarter of the claims
are now selling at from $15,000 to $50,000. The estimate of the district
is given as thirteen square miles, with an average of $300,000 to the
claim, while some are valued as high as $1,000,000 each. A number of
claims have been purchased for large sums on a few months' credit, and
the amount has been paid out of the ground before it became due.

"At Dawson sacks of gold dust are thrown under the counters in the
stores for safekeeping. The peculiar part of it is that most of the
locations were made by men who came in last year, old-timers not having
had faith in the indications until the value of the region was assured,
whereupon prices jumped so high that they could not get in. Some of the
stories are so fabulous I am afraid to repeat them for fear of being
suspected of the infection.

"There are other discoveries reported a little beyond and on the Stewart
River, but these have not yet been verified."



The San Francisco correspondent of the New York Sun, who saw the arrival
of the Excelsior, sent to his paper by wire a graphic description of the
sensation created. He said:

"San Francisco has not been stirred by any mining discovery since the
opening up of the great bonanzas on the Comstock Lode in Nevada, nearly
thirty years ago, as it has been by the stories of two score sun-tanned
and hard-featured miners who have returned from the new Klondyke camp on
the Yukon River in far Alaska.

These stories would have excited derision were it not that all these men
were able to furnish ocular proof of their tales with pounds of yellow
gold. Not one of the party went into this camp last Fall with anything
more than his outfit and a few hundred dollars. Not one came out with
less than $5,000, a dozen cleaned up from $10,000 to $20,000, while half
a dozen averaged from $20,000 to $90,000. Scores of them left claims
that they valued at $20,000 to $1,000,000, which are now being worked by
their partners or by hired laborers. They are not boasters nor boomers.
In fact, they are careful to warn any one about venturing into the Yukon
country unless he is young, vigorous and brave, able to bear hardships,
and has from $500 to $1,000 for outfit and current expenses after
reaching the new gold fields. Perhaps it is these very conservative
views which have made their talk take such powerful hold on the popular

All returned miners agree that the best way to reach the new gold fields
is by way of Juneau. The journey is mainly by land over a snow-covered
trail, down numerous streams and across lakes. The only very dangerous
place is Chilicoot Pass, which is dreaded because of the sudden
snowstorms that come up without warning and that have proved fatal to
many adventurous miners. The distance is 650 miles, and it takes an
average of twenty-five days to cover it.

Dawson City has now a population of nearly 3,000. It is beautifully
situated on the banks of the Yukon near the mouth of the Klondyke River,
and seems destined to become the mining centre of the Northwest
territory. The people now live in shanties, each built of a few strips
of weather boarding and canvas. There is a sawmill in operation day and
night, but it cannot supply the demand for its products. Lumber sells at
the mill for $150 per thousand, but when delivered at mines the price
jumps to $450.

One of the peculiar features of the new camp is the lack of shooting,
due to the fact that the Canadian Government does not permit men to
carry firearms. Police disarm miners when they enter the district, so
that there is not any of the lawlessness and crime which marked early
placer mining in California. There is much gambling, and play is high.
An old miner, Alexander Orr, who spent eight Winters in Alaska, but will
not return, said:

"Dawson is not like most of the large mining camps. It is not a tough
town; murders are almost unknown. The miners are a quiet, peaceable kind
of men, who have gone there to work and are willing that everybody else
shall have an equal chance with themselves. A great deal of gambling is
done in town, but serious quarrels are the exception. As a gambling town
I think it is equal to any I have ever seen, and this, by the way, is
always the test of a mining camp's prosperity. Stud poker is the usual
game. They play $1 ante, and often bet $300 or $500 on the third card."

Orr sold out his claim for $20,000, and the men who bought it made the
purchase money in four months. Perhaps the best idea of what has been
done in the new camp can be gained from the following short interviews
with returned miners:

William Kulju said: "I brought down just 1,000 ounces of dust and sold
it to smelting works. I worked at Eldorado Creek, near Dawson, and was
in that country about a year, and had a couple of dollars and a pack
last Summer when I went in. I sold my claim for $25,000, part cash and
the balance to be paid as it is taken out. Now, I am taking a trip to
the old country--Finland--and am coming back next year."

Fred Lendeseen: "I went to Alaska two years ago, and when I left there
six weeks ago I brought $13,000 in gold dust with me. I have had
considerable experience in mining, and say without hesitation that
Alaska is the richest country I have ever seen. I have interest in a
claim near Dawson and am going back in the Spring."

Greg Stewart: "I had a partner and I sold out my interest for $45,000
and put my money back again at interest in mines. My partner had 1,500
ounces of dust, but it fell short four ounces on the way down. The dust
will go over $17 an ounce, but we are all waiting for returns from the
smelting works. I brought a few hundred ounces with me, but I get
interest of 2 per cent. on short loans. I expect to return next Spring."

John Marks: "I brought $11,500 in gold dust with me, but I had to work
for every bit of it. There is plenty of gold in Alaska--more, I believe,
than the most sanguine imagine--but it cannot be obtained without great
effort and endurance. The first thing for a poor man to do when he
reaches the country is to begin prospecting. As snow is from two to five
feet deep prospecting is not easy. Snow must first be shoveled away, and
then a fire built on the ground to melt the ice. As the ground thaws the
shaft must be sunk until bed rock is reached. The average prospector has
to sink a great many shafts before he reaches anything worth his while.
If gold is found in sufficient quantities to pay for working, he may
begin drifting from the shaft, and continue to do so as long as he finds
enough gold to pay."

Albert Fox: "I and partner went into the district in 1895 and secured
two claims. We sold one for $45,000. I brought 300 ounces, which netted
$5,000. Everybody is at Dawson for the present. The district is apt to
be overrun. I wouldn't advise anyone to go there this Fall, for people
are liable to go hungry before spring. About 800 went over the summit
from Juneau, 600 miles, so there may not be food enough for all."

Robert Kooks: "I've been four years in Alaska. I had a half interest in
a claim on Eldorado Creek, and sold out to my partner for $12,000. I
bought a half interest in a claim on the Bonanza, below the Discovery
claim, and my share is worth easily $15,000. I brought $14,000 in gold
dust, and shall return in the Spring, after rest and recreation."

J. B. Hollinshead: "I was in the diggings about two years, and brought
out about 1,500 ounces, which I suppose will bring $17 an ounce. I'm not
sure about going back, though I have a claim on Gold Bottom Creek,
fifteen miles from Bonanza. It is less than a year since I located my
claim. My dust will bring over $25,000."

M. S. Norcross: "I was sick and couldn't work, so I cooked for Mr.
McNamee. Still I had a claim on the Bonanza, but didn't know what was in
it, because I couldn't work it. I sold out last spring for $10,000 and
was satisfied to get a chance to return to my home in Los Angeles."

Thomas Flack: "My dust will bring more than $6,000. I have an interest
in two claims on the Eldorado. One partner sold out for $50,000 and
another for $55,000. I had an offer of $50,000, but refused it just
before I came out."

Thomas Cook: "It is a good country, but if there is a rush there's going
to be a great deal of suffering. Over 2,000 men are there at present,
and 2,000 more will be in before snow falls. I've been at placer mining
for years in California and British Columbia, and the mines at Dawson
are more extensive and beyond anything I ever saw. Last year I did very
well at Dawson. I have a claim worth about the average, they say from
$25,000 to $50,000, on Bear Creek, across the divide from the Bonanza."

Con Stamatin: "I was mining on shares with a partner. He's still there.
We worked on Alexander McDonald's ground in Eldorado for forty-five days
and took out $33,000. We got 50 per cent. and the other half went to
McDonald. Then we divided our share, and I came away."

All miners unite in saying that the only fear for the coming winter is
the lack of supplies. The Alaska Commercial Company promises, however,
to send in all that is needed. Living is high now, as may be seen from
these quotations of prices when the miners started for home: Flour, $12
per hundredweight; (following are the prices per pound) moose ham, $1;
caribou meat, 65 cents; beans, 10; rice, 25; sugar, 25; bacon, 40;
potatoes, 25; turnips, 15; coffee, 50; dried fruits, 35; tea, $1;
tobacco, $1.50; butter, a roll, $1.50; eggs, a dozen, $1.50; salmon,
each, $1 to $1.50; canned fruits, 50 cents; canned meats, 75; liquors,
per drink, 50; shovels, $2.50; picks, $5; coal oil, per gallon, $1;
overalls, $1.50; underwear, per suit, $5 to $7.50; shoes, $5; rubber
boots, $10 to $15.

Miners who have reached San Francisco do not act like people who have
suddenly jumped from poverty to comparative wealth. They are level
headed. They went to the best hotels, and they are living on the fat of
the land, but they do not throw money away, and not one started in to
paint the town red. They have worked so hard that they appreciate the
value of money. What they delight in most are theatres and other
amusements. They say no one knows how to enjoy these if he has not spent
a year in Alaska. Three-quarters of the miners will return in the Spring
when they are well rested."


When the first stories of the fruitfulness of the "Far Off Land" came to
the ears of the children of Israel there were many doubters, but when
those who had been sent to spy out the land came back later bearing
great bunches of grapes there were none that doubted. So when the
Excelsior arrived in San Francisco, on the 14th of July, many may have
doubted the truth of the stories told of the richness of the new gold
fields, but when, three days later, the Portland steamed into Seattle
with gold to the value of over $1,000,000, brought from the region of
the Upper Yukon, no one who saw with their own eyes the gold, and who
heard with their own ears the tales of mineral riches unsurpassed, could
doubt that on the banks of the Klondyke had been discovered the world's
greatest gold fields. An eye witness of the scenes of the Portland's
arrival thus tells the story in the New York Journal:

Gold in boxes, gold in bags, gold in blankets, fine gold and coarse
gold, gold nuggets and gold dust, the yellow treasure of the Klondyke
diggings, came from the far North.

A ton and a half of gold was a part of the load of the steamer Portland
from St. Michael's, Alaska, and with the 3,000 pounds of gold were the
several owners, sixty-eight miners, some with $5,000, some with
$10,000, some with $50,000, a few with $100,000 and over, but all with

With the product of their work for a season in the new "diggings," the
richest in surface gold ever discovered, these miners had made the long
voyage from Dawson City, the new golden town, 1,895 miles down the Yukon
to St. Michael's, and at St. Michael's had boarded the Portland with
their treasure, bound for homeland and intent upon changing their dust
and their nuggets into the minted, milled coin of their country.

On the voyage the gold was stored in the captain's state room. The
little safe in the corner was packed full of bags of gold, and the
remainder that the safe would not hold was placed in three boxes.

When the steamer came to the port the miners put their bags on their
shoulders and walked down the gang plank in the presence of a vast
throng of Seattle people assembled to see the great pile of treasure
from the rich fields of the far North. A miner with only $5,000 in his
bag easily carried his fortune. Twenty thousand dollars in two bags is a
good load for any stalwart man, no matter if he has worked where the
mercury falls to sixty degrees below zero. Two men used all their
strength in carrying a strapped blanket, in which was about $50,000. The
few with the big fortunes, $100,000 and over, had to hire help to get
their precious possessions to a safe place of storage in Seattle.

The greater part of the ton and a half of gold was taken from the ground
during three Winter months. Last Fall some green strangers,
"tenderfeet," fresh from the comforts of civilization, were so absurd as
to give no heed to the advice of the old miners. The pioneers of the
Yukon mines, the men who know Circle City and Forty Mile Creek and all
the surrounding country, said there was no use looking for gold "over
yonder on the Klondyke." But the foolish strangers went "over yonder on
the Klondyke." During the Fall the news reached the older diggings of
the amazing discoveries of gold by these absurd tourists from the South,
and from all the country round about came the rush to Klondyke.

When gold is waiting to be lifted out of the ground cold is not to be
considered. During the dark Winter days the temperature, 30 or 40
degrees below zero, the quest for dust and nuggets was pursued
continually. The product of the work of some of these Winter miners,
defiant of the cold, is shown in the treasure brought to the United
States by the Portland and the Excelsior.

The greatest fortune gained by any of the company of miners is the
honeymoon treasure of Clarence Berry, of Fresno, Cal. He brought
$135,000 in dust and nuggets. In 1890 young Berry went to the Yukon
country, and for several years he prospected along Forty-Mile Creek and
other placer fields without success. Last Summer he returned to
California, married, and took his bride with him to the North. Instead
of remaining in Alaska he went over the boundary line into British
possessions, and on the Klondyke he struck the richest pocket that was
discovered. He said that the principal part of his $135,000 came from
three hundred "box lengths." A "box length" is fifteen feet long and
twelve feet wide. In one length he found a pocket of $10,000. In another
length was a nugget weighing thirteen ounces, next to the largest found
in the diggings. Mr. Berry deemed his fortune sufficient for the
present, and is taking his bride to his home in Fresno, where, in the
July temperature of 110 above, she may find compensation for the 58
below of January on the Yukon.

One of the foolish strangers who gave no consideration to the advice of
the old miners is Frank Phiscater. Last Autumn he went from Borada,
Mich., to Alaska and thence to Klondyke. He was one of the first to
discover gold in the fabulously rich placers of the new El Dorado. He
employed nine men and in three months' time took out from two claims
$96,027. He still owns the claims, but having nearly $100,000 made in
less than twelve months he deems himself entitled to a trip to Michigan.



Clarence J. Berry        $135,000

W. Stanley                115,000

F. Phiscater               92,000

F. G. H. Bowker            90,000

T. S. Lippy                60,000

K. B. Hollingshead         25,500

R. McNulty                 20,000

Wm. Kulju                  17,000

Joe Mamue                  10,000

James McMann               15,000

Albert Galbraith           15,000

Neil MacArthur             15,000

D. MacArthur               15,000

Ber. Anderson              14,000

Robert Krook               14,000

Fred Lendesser             13,000

Alexander Orr              11,500

John Marks                 11,500

Thomas Cook                10,000

M. S. Norcross             10,000

J. Ernmerger               10,000

Con Stamatin                8,250

Albert Fox                  5,100

Greg Stewart                5,000

J. O. Hestwood              5,000

Thomas Flack                5,000

Louis B. Rhoads             5,000

Fred Rice                   5,000



Among the Portland's passengers was William Stanley, of Seattle,
formerly a blacksmith, who went into the country two years ago last
spring. He returned with $115,000 in gold nuggets and dust. His claim is
on the Bonanza Creek, emptying into the Klondyke five miles above Dawson
City, the headquarters of the camp. Clarence Berry, formerly a farmer of
Fresno, Cal., brought back seven sacks, containing $135,000. Clarence
Berry, of Los Angeles, went to the Yukon in 1894.

"My luck was bad for three years. Last fall I came out and married, and
when I went back I heard of the Klondyke. I was early on the ground,
locating, with other parties, three claims on Eldorado Creek. We struck
it rich. That's all there is to tell.

"Last winter I took out $130,000 in thirty box lengths. Another time the
second largest nugget ever found in the Yukon was taken out of my claim.
It weighed thirteen ounces and was worth $213. I have known men to take
out $1,000 a day from a drift claim. Of course the gold was found in
pockets, and those finds, you can rest assured, were very scarce. I
would not advise a man to take in an outfit that would cost less than

"The country is wild, rough and full of hardships for those unused to
the rigors of Arctic winter. If a man makes a fortune he is liable to
earn it by severe hardships and sufferings, but then grit, perseverance
and luck will probably reward hard work with a comfortable income for

Henry Anderson, a native of Sweden and well known on the Lound, sold a
one-half interest in his claim on Eldorado Creek and has come back to
Seattle with $45,000 spot cash, the proceeds of the sale. T. J. Kelly
and son, of Tacoma, went in last year and made $10,000. The son is in
charge of the claim and the father was among the Portland's passengers.

Frank Keller, of Los Angeles was one of the Portland's passengers. He
went in last year, mined during the winter, and last year sold the claim
for $35,000. William Sloat, formerly a dry-goods merchant, of Lanimo, B.
C., sold his claim for $52,000, and, with the gold he took from the
mine, came back on the Portland. Another man named Wilkenson, of the
same city, sold his claim for $40,000. Frank Phiscater, of Baroda,
Mich., returned with $96,000, the result of his labors in Miles. Capt.
Strickland, of the Canadian mounted police, who is en route to Ottawa on
official business, is among the arrivals. He says:

"When I left Dawson City about a month ago there were about 800 claims
staked out and between 2,000 and 3,000 people. We can safely say that
there was $1,500,000 in gold mined last winter. Wages in mines were $15
a day, and the sawmill paid laborers $10 a day with claims now staked,
but will afford employment for about 5,000, I believe. If a man is
strong and healthy and wants to work he can find employment at good
wages. Several men worked on an interest, or what is termed a lay, and
during the winter realized from $5,000 to $10,000. The mines are from 35
to 100 miles from Alaska boundary."

J. Kellar, who pronounced it the richest gold country in the world,

"It was 68 degrees below zero last winter, and the ground was frozen to
the depth of forty feet. The snow doesn't fall to any great depth, three
feet being the greatest, and that was light and fleecy frost. All the
gold is taken out of gravel by thawing in the summer. There are nine
months of winter. We left Dawson City on a river steamer on June 19, and
were eight days reaching St. Michael's, 1,800 miles. The weather in
Klondyke was warm and sultry, much warmer than it seemed, and mosquitos
were in myriads. They are in the water one drinks. They give a man no
rest day or night. I am satisfied to stay away from Klondyke, although I
did well.

"It is a horrible country to live in, but it is extremely healthy. Every
man is on his good behavior, and, for a mining country, has as good,
orderly, law-abiding citizens as I ever saw. At present there is no
prospecting going on, all men in the country being employed at $12 or
$15 a day, or are working on their own claims. There is a big country
open to prospectors."

Tom Cochrane, a grocery clerk, staked one of the Klondyke miners with
$300 worth of supplies eighteen months ago. His dividend received on the
Portland was $41,000.

Victor Lord, a western Washington logger, spent four years in the Yukon.
He made $10,000 last winter in six weeks on the Klondyke, working a
claim on shares. He will return after spending the summer here.
Alexander Menzie, of Arizona, was a miner before he went into the
Klondyke this spring. He located two claims on Indian Creek, and after
three weeks' work brought out $7,000. "I have mined for thirty years in
California, Arizona and Nevada," he said to-night. "The Klondyke country
is richer than any placer district in the world. I own two claims on
Indian Creek and will return in the spring in time to sled over the
mountains into Klondyke from Dyea."

Harry Olson received $60,000 for his interest in a claim on Eldorado.
His wealth is in sacks, like that of the others. He is a California
farmer, and left for his old home, from which he departed three years

The miners left Dawson City June 19 and were seven days on the trip by
steamer down the Yukon to St. Michael's. After another week's rest they
sailed on July 3 on the steamship Portland.

Inspector Strickland says that complete order is maintained in the camp
by the Canadian mounted police. Little disorder prevails, but this may
have changed since the departure of the Portland party, as the Alaska
Commercial Company sent 10,000 gallons of whiskey into the camp on June

There is a great scarcity of lumber and the single sawmill is kept busy
day and night supplying the camp with lumber. The camp is a typical
specimen of the frontier mining village, without regular streets. It
straggles up the Klondyke for three miles, and then the houses are found
at intervals of a quarter of a mile.



To say that the news from the north brought by passengers of the
Excelsior and confirmed by those of the Portland swept over the Pacific
coast with the rapidity of a prairie fire would be to make use of an
inadequate simile. In less than forty-eight hours hundreds were busy
arranging their affairs so as to depart by the first steamer for the new
Eldorado. On the 18th of July, only four days after the arrival of the
Excelsior, the offices of the Alaska Commercial Company in San Francisco
were besieged by men, and even women, all anxious to secure a passage,
and on the same day it was stated by an officer of the company that
their steamers would not be able to carry one-tenth of those desirous of
starting from that port alone. The same official estimated that before
the end of the month the number of those who would set out from San
Francisco would reach fully 5,000. Hundreds with means sufficient to buy
tickets and outfits fairly tumbled over each other to secure these.
Others sought capital by offering one-half their winnings to those who
would stake them. Syndicates were speedily formed, "grub stakes" offered
and parties of tens, twenties and even hundreds organized for the
venture. The reported danger of famine, even the warnings of returned
miners seemed to deter no one.

While such was the craze in San Francisco, the excitement was no less in
Seattle, Tacoma, Portland and all along the Pacific coast. Nor did it
end here. The same excitement swept Eastward and prevailed to a greater
or less extent everywhere. The press of the county gave publicity to
every scrap of news, corps of correspondents were organized and "hurried
to the front," and even the "special artist on the spot" was not "left
out in the cold," whatever he may suffer when he reaches a latitude
where the mercury coquettes with the 80s. and 90s. below zero. All sorts
of advertisements from all sorts of people, offering almost any terms
and conditions to a backer, appeared, and, as we write, are still
appearing in the daily papers. The one subject of conversation in the
swell clubs, no less than on the street corners, is the news from
Alaska, and the region of the Klondyke and the Yukon River have suddenly
become as familiar geographical designations as Brooklyn or the Hudson.

Perhaps no more reliable authority could be given as to the great
resources of the Klondyke and the excitement prevailing in and about
that region than Capt. Francis Tuttle, commander of the revenue cutter
Bear. Writing to a friend in New York from St. Michael's on the Yukon
River, the Captain says:

"The days of '49 in California are a mere side show compared with the
excitement in the Yukon country. Imagine my astonishment on reaching
here yesterday to run across a man who, last September, was discharged
as a deck hand from a steamer on Puget Sound. The fellow made his way
into Alaska, worked seven months on the Klondyke and has now reached St.
Michael's with $150,000 in gold. I could hardly believe my senses, but
there was his gold, sure enough.

"As I write St. Michael's is full of miners awaiting an opportunity to
get down to Puget Sound and to California. Nearly every other man of
them has $50,000 worth of dust, and there is not a man here with less
than $15,000. The latter are referred to as 'poor fellows' who have
been hard hit with bad luck, and it seems to be real sympathy that the
more fortunate ones show for these $15,000 fellows.

"The deck hand, with his $150,000, had the largest amount of gold of any
one in the crowd. The whole business is almost incredible, yet one must
believe what he sees.

"It is enough to turn the mind of any person, and particularly when one
learns with what comparative ease this gold is mined."

As we write several steamers having already departed from various
Pacific ports, are on their way to the Yukon, all freighted to their
fullest capacity with gold hunters, provisions and mining outfits.
Others are following as rapidly as they can be outfitted, and scarcely a
seaworthy craft available for the purpose can be found that has not
already been brought into requisition.

This stream of humanity that has suddenly turned northward and is being
constantly swollen as it proceeds on its way is made up of all classes
of men and from every condition in life. The experienced and rugged
miner is accompanied by the "tenderfoot." The soft-handed clerk falls in
line with the tanned and strong-muscled out-of-door laborer. Even the
professional man has abandoned his comfortable office for the miner's
hut. The first steamer to leave numbered among her passengers the
venerable poet of the Sierras, Joaquin Miller. Another steamer, sailing
from Seattle on July 22, carried north ex-Governor McGraw, who for many
years was president of the First National Bank, of Seattle; Governor of
Washington for four years ending January last, and later a candidate for
United States Senator to succeed W. S. Squire. Among his companions du
voyage were General M. E. Carr, formerly Brigadier General of the State
militia, and whose law practice is the largest in the State of
Washington, and Captain A. J. Balliet, at one time Yale's greatest
oarsman and football player, who also leaves a handsome law practice to
seek gold on the Yukon.



Dr. William H. Dall, one of the curators of the National Museum, is
familiar with the region of country in which the Klondyke gold fields
are located, through having been on several geological expeditions to
the region in Alaska adjoining the gold district, and says that in his
opinion the reports from there probably are not exaggerated.

"When I was there," he says, "I did not find gold, but knew of it being
taken out in profitable quantities for fifteen years or more. It was
first discovered there in 1866. In 1880, when I was up in that country,
the first party of prospectors who have made mining profitable, started
out. The gold is found on the various tributaries of the Yukon, and I
have been within a comparatively short distance of the Klondyke fields.
I made one trip to Circle City, just over the boundary of Canada.

"The gold bearing belt of Northwestern America contains all the gold
fields and extends into that part of British Columbia known as the
Northwestern Territory and Alaska. The Yukon really runs along in that
belt for 500 or 600 miles. The bed of the main river is in the lowlands
of the valley.

"The yellow metal is not found in paying quantity in the main river, but
in the small streams which cut through the mountains on either side.
These practically wash out the gold. The mud and mineral matter is
carried into the main river, while the gold is left on the rough bottoms
of these side streams. In most cases the gold lies at the bottom of
thick gravel deposits. The gold is covered by frozen gravel in the
Winter. During the Summer, until the snow is all melted, the surface is
covered by muddy torrents. When the snow is all melted and the springs
begin to freeze the streams dry up. At the approach of Winter, in order
to get at the gold the miners find it necessary to dig into the gravel

"Formerly they stripped the gravel off until they came to the gold. Now
they sink a shaft to the bottom of the gravel and tunnel along
underneath in the gold bearing layer. The way in which this is done is
interesting, as it has to be carried on in cold weather, when everything
is frozen.

"The miners build fires over the area where they wish to work and keep
these lighted over that territory for the space of twenty-four hours.
Then, at the expiration of this period, the gravel will be melted and
softened to a depth of perhaps six inches. This is then taken off and
other fires built until the gold-bearing layer is reached. When the
shaft is down that far other fires are built at the bottom, against the
sides of the layer, and tunnels made in this manner.

"Blasting would do no good, on account of the hard nature of the
material, and would blow out just as out of a gun. The matter taken out
containing the gold is piled up until Spring, when the torrents come
down, and is panned and cradled by these. It is certainly very hard

"I see many reasons why the gold fields should be particularly rich. The
streams which cut through the mountains have probably done so for
centuries, wearing them down several hundred feet and washing out the
gold into the beds and gravel.

"It is a country in which it is very hard to find food, as there is
practically no game. Before the whites went into the region there were
not more than 300 natives. They have hard work to support themselves,
on account of the scarcity of game."

An interesting letter telling of the recent trip of the steamer
Excelsior has been written by Captain J. F. Higgins, of the steamer, to
a friend. He says:

"The word Klondyke means Deer River, and the stream is called the
Reindeer River on the charts. It empties into the Yukon fifty miles
above the Big River. The geographical position of the juncture is 76
degrees 10 minutes north latitude, 138 degrees 50 minutes west
longitude. Bonanza Creek dumps into the Klondyke about two miles above
the Yukon. Eldorado is a tributary of the Bonanza. There are numerous
other creeks and tributaries, the main river being three hundred miles

"The gold so far has been taken from Bonanza and Eldorado, both well
named, for the richness of the placers is truly marvellous. Eldorado,
thirty miles long, is staked the whole length and as far as worked has

"One of our passengers who is taking home $100,000 with him has worked
one hundred feet of his ground and refused $200,000 for the remainder,
and confidently expects to clean up $400,000 and more. He has in a
bottle $212 from one pan of dirt. His pay dirt while being washed
averaged $250 an hour to each man shovelling in. Two others of our
miners who worked their own claim cleaned up $6,000 from one day's

"There is about fifteen feet of dirt above bed rock, the pay streak
averaging from four to six feet, which is tunnelled out while the ground
is frozen. Of course, the ground taken out is thawed by building fires,
and when the thaw comes and water rushes in they set their sluices and
wash the dirt. Two of our fellows thought a small bird in the hand worth
a large one in the bush, and sold their claims for $45,000, getting
$4,500 down, the remainder to be paid in monthly instalments of $10,000
each. The purchasers had no more than $5,000 paid. They were twenty days
thawing and getting out dirt. Then there was no water to sluice with,
but one fellow made a rocker, and in ten days took out the $10,000 for
the first instalment. So, tunnelling and rocking, they took out $40,000
before there was water to sluice with.

"Of course, these things read like the story of Aladdin, but fiction is
not at all in it with facts at Klondyke. The ground located and
prospected can be worked out in a few years, but there is an immense
territory untouched, and the laboring man who can get there with one
year's provisions will have a better chance to make a stake than in any
other part of the world."



The largest nugget yet found was picked out by Burt Hudson on claim Six
of the Bonanza, and is worth a little over $250. The next largest was
found by J. Clements, and was worth $231. The last four pans Clements
took out ran $2,000, or an average of $500 each, and one of them went
$775. Bigger pockets have been struck in the Cariboo region and in
California, but nowhere on earth have men picked up so much gold in so
short a time. A young man named Beecher, came down afoot and by dog
sledge, starting out early in March. He brought $12,000 to $15,000 with
him. He was purser on the Weare last summer, and went in after the close
of navigation in October or September. About Dec. 15 he got a chance to
work a shift on shares, and in sixty days made his stake, which is about
$40,000. He has purchased a claim or two. You will find more gold in
circulation in Dawson than you ever saw in all your life. Saloons take
in $3,000 to $4,000 each per night. Men who have been in all parts of
the world where gold is mined say they never saw such quantities taken
in so short a time.

The diggings around Circle City and in the older places are rich enough
to satisfy any ordinary demand, but they have all, or nearly all, been
temporarily left for the new fields. There are probably 250 men working
in the mines outside Circle City, but there would have been 1,500 had
not the new strike been made. Should the new field play out, which is a
thing impossible, the older diggings would be returned to and with
profit. However, the new finds are not going to play out. There is
enough in sight to confirm the belief that these new diggings cannot be
exhausted in ten years. Of course, comparatively little gold is being
taken out now, for the streams are too high, but there is much that was
drifted and piled up last winter that is not yet washed.



The New York Journal prints this story of William Stanley: Stanley is
one of the fortunate ones who returned from the Klondyke on the
Portland. In addition to his present fortune he is interested with his
son and two New Yorkers in claims which, he says, will yield $2,000,000.
Stanley is a married man; he has a wife and several children. During his
absence in the far North the family struggled to eke out an existence,
for everything that Stanley had went to pay his expenses to the gold
fields. Stanley is well on in years. He was not accustomed to hardships;
for years he conducted a little book store in an out-of-the-way business

To-day people who used to help him by giving 10 to 15 cents cannot
realize that he is wealthy. Here is his story:

"I went to the Yukon as a last resort. I was getting old and I had no
money and I knew that I would never get any unless I took it out of the
ground. It was a year ago last March that I left Seattle. I am free to
confess that my family was at that time in destitute circumstances. I
made for the Yukon. I had never before been there. I knew nothing of
mining and nothing of the hardships of the country, and, in fact, was as
great a "greeny" as ever set foot in the great gold country of the
Northwest. My son, Samuel Stanley, went with me. He was as ignorant as
his father.

"While we were on the steamship Alki, which took us to Dyea, we met two
young men, Charles and George Worden. They were residents of Sackett's
Harbor, N. Y., and had come West in search of gold. Their mother lives
back in the old home, so they informed me. We became very intimate with
the Wordens. They knew little, if anything, about the country, and one
day in conservation one of us suggested that we form a company and do
our work on the syndicate plan, each man to share and share alike. We
wandered through the Yukon districts for several months and were getting
discouraged, because there seemed to be nothing for us. We met other men
who were getting rich, but we grew poorer as the days came and went.
Once we had about concluded to go back.

"It was in the latter part of last September that we befriended a man
who gave us a tip as to the riches of the Klondyke. We were willing to
believe anything, and made for the Klondyke at once. At that time we
were en route for Forty Mile Creek. We were then at Sixty Mile.

"The first thing we did when we reached the Klondyke was to spend a
little time at the mouth of the stream. We were there just twenty-four
hours when the little steamer Ellis arrived with 150 excited miners
aboard. They had just heard the good news, and on their arrival they
made a rush for the richest spots on Bonanza and Eldorado creeks.

"We went to Eldorado Creek and made locations on what were called Claims
Twenty-five, Twenty-six, Fifty-three and Fifty-four. I think it was in
October that we made our locations. We worked Claims Twenty-five and
Twenty-six, and were very soon satisfied that we had a fine thing, and
went to work to make preparations for a long winter of experiences and
hardships. We got all we wanted before spring. Every man put in his time
sinking prospect holes in the gulch.

"I tell the simple truth when I say that within three months we took
from the two claims the sum of $112,000. A remarkable thing about our
findings is that in taking this enormous sum we drift up and down
stream, nor did we cross-cut the pay streaks.

"Of course, we may be wrong, but this is the way we are figuring, and we
are so certain that what we say is true that we would not sell out for a
million. In our judgment, based on close figuring, there are in the two
claims we worked, and Claims No. 53 and No. 54, $1,000 to the lineal
foot. I say that in four claims, we have at the very least $2,000,000,
which can be taken out without any great work.

"I want to say that I believe there is gold in every creek in Alaska.
Certainly on the Klondyke the claims are not spotted. One seems to be as
good as another. It's gold, gold, gold all over. It's yards wide and
yards deep. I say so, because I have been there and have the gold to
show for it. All you have to do is to run a hole down, and there you
find plenty of gold dust. I would say that our pans on the Eldorado
claims will average $3, some go as high as $150, and, believe me, when I
say that, in five pans, I have taken out as high as $750 and sometimes
more. I did not pick the pans, but simply put them against my breast and
scooped the dirt off the bed rock.

"Of course, the majority of those on the Klondyke have done much
figuring as to the amount of gold the Klondyke will yield. Many times we
fellows figured on the prospects of the Eldorado. I would not hesitate
much about guaranteeing $21,000,000, and should not be surprised a bit
if $25,000,000, or even $30,000,000, was taken out.

"Some people will tell you that the Klondyke is a marvel, and there will
never be a discovery in Alaska which will compare with it. I don't
believe it. I think that there will be a number of new creeks discovered
that will make wonderful yields. Why, Bear Gulch is just like Eldorado.
Bear Gulch has a double bed rock. Many do not know it, but it's a fact,
and miners who are acquainted with it will tell you the same thing.

"The bed rocks are three feet apart. In the lower bed the gold is as
black as a black cat, and in the upper bed, the gold is as bright as any
you ever saw. We own No. 10 claim, below Discovery, on Bear Gulch, and
also Nos. 20 and 21 on Last Chance Gulch, above Discovery. We prospected
for three miles on Last Chance Gulch, and could not tell the best place
to locate the Discovery claim. The man making a discovery of the creek
is entitled by law to stake a claim and take an adjoining one, or, in
other words, two claims; so you see he wants to get in a good location
on the creek or gulch. Hunker Gulch is highly looked to. I think it will
prove another great district, and some good strikes have also been made
on Dominion Creek. Indian Creek is also becoming famous.

"What are we doing with all the money we take out?

"Well, we paid $45,000 spot cash for a half interest in Claim 32,
Eldorado. We also loaned $5,000 each to four parties on Eldorado Creek,
taking mortgages on their claims, so you see we are well secured.

"No, I do not want any better security for my money than Eldorado
claims, thank you. I only wish I had a mortgage on the whole creek.

"We had a great deal of trouble in securing labor in prospecting our
properties. Old miners would not work for any price. We could
occasionally rope in a greenhorn and get him to work for a few days at
$15 a day. Six or eight miners worked on shares for us about six weeks,
and we settled. It developed that they had earned in that length of time
$5,300 each. That was pretty good pay, wasn't it? We paid one old miner
$12 for three hours' work and offered to continue him at that rate, but
he would not have it, and he went out to hunt a claim of his own. My
son, Samuel, and Charles Worden are in charge of our interests in
Alaska. George Worden and I came out, and we will go back in March and
relieve them. Then they will come out for a spell. George goes from here
to his home in New York State to make his mother comfortable.

"I am an American by birth, but of Irish parents. I formerly lived in
Western Kansas, but my claim there was not quite as good as the one I
staked out on the Eldorado Creek."



There are two routes either of which can be taken to the Klondyke. The
best but the most expensive is by steamer from Seattle to St. Michael's,
and then by river boat up the Yukon 1,700 miles to Dawson City. By this
route it takes thirty-five to forty days, and the fare is $180. The
steamers permit only 150 pounds of baggage for each passenger. Two
steamers that will leave before the river is closed by ice cannot carry
more than 150 passengers each. The other route is by land by way of
Juneau. The passenger goes from Seattle to Juneau. There at this season
all packs must be carried on the back or on mules. When snow falls
sledges can be used and the trip can be made much more easily. The
distance is 650 miles. This trip is thus described:

"Leaving Juneau you go to Dyea by way of Lime Canal, and from there to
Lake Lindermann, thirty miles on foot, or portage, as we call it. The
lake gives you a ride of five or six miles, and then follows another
long journey overland to the headwaters of Lake Bennett, which is
twenty-eight miles long. On foot you go again for several miles, and
then the caribou crossing of the river furnishes transportation for four
miles to Tagish Lake, where another twenty-one-mile boat ride may be

"This is followed by a weary stretch of mountainous country, and then
Marsh or Mud Lake is reached. You get another boat ride of twenty-four
miles, and then go down the creek for twenty-seven miles to Miles Canon
and to White Horse Rapids.

"This is one of the most dangerous places on the entire route, and
should be avoided by all strangers. The stream is full of sunken rocks
and runs with the speed of a mile race. Passing White Horse Rapids the
journey is down the river for thirty miles to Lake Labarge, where
thirty-one miles of navigable water is found. Another short portage and
Lous River is reached, where you have a 200-mile journey, which brings
you to Fort Selkirk.

"At this point Polly and Lous rivers come together, forming the Yukon.
From that point on is practically smooth sailing, though the stranger
must be exceedingly careful."

For some time past a number of local and English companies have been
studying the lay of the land between Chilkat and Circle City with a view
to establishing a quicker, and more practicable way of transportation to
the gold fields along the Yukon. Goodall, Perkins & Co., of New York
have made a thorough investigation of the matter, and Capt. Chas. M.
Goodall of that firm says:

"The rich find in the Klondyke district will probably result in some
better means of transportation, though the roughness of the country and
the limited open season will not justify anybody in building a railroad
for any distance. Recently we sent several hundred sheep and cattle to
Juneau, and from there to the head of navigation by the steamer Alki.
Mr. Dalton, who discovered the trail across the country from the Chilkat
River to Fort Selkirk, is taking live stock to the mines. His route lies
from the head of navigation through Chilkoot Pass and along the trail,
which is over prairie several hundred miles, to the Yukon River, near
Fort Selkirk. At this time of year the prairie is clear and bunch grass
grows on it in abundance.

"I believe this will ultimately be the popular route. People could go
over it in wagons, as the prairie is level. Stations could be
established, as was done on our plains in '49. It would be easy to go
down the Yukon in boats from where Dalton's trail strikes it to Dawson
City and other mining camps.

"The plan to build a traction road over Chilkoot Pass from Dyea, the
head of navigation after leaving Juneau, to Lake Linderman, is not a
good business proposition. It has been talked of, and the rest of the
plan is to have steamers to ply from Lake Linderman through the other
lakes to the Yukon. But to do this two portages would have to be made on
account of the falls in the river, and these would be enormously

"A British company has had in contemplation for some time the
construction of a railroad from the head of navigation on Taku Inlet,
near Juneau, to Teslin, or Aklene Lake, and thence down some small
rivers to the Yukon and the mines. Even by this route there would be
need of portages. The natural way to take in freight, unless the hurry
be great, is by St. Michael and up the Yukon. To establish even a wagon
road over Dalton's Trail on the prairie, a railroad over the divide from
Dyea to Lake Linderman, or a railroad as planned by the English company,
concessions would have to be secured from the British Government."



To St. Michael's                        2,850
To Circle City                          4,350
To Forty Mile                           4,600
To Klondyke                             4,650


To Juneau (by steamer)                  1,680
Juneau to Chilkat                          80
Juneau to Dyea                            100
Juneau to head of navigation              106
Juneau to summit of Chilcoot Pass         114
Juneau to head of Lake Linderman          123
Juneau to foot of Lake Linderman          127
Juneau to head of Lake Bennet             128
Juneau to foot of Takish Lake             173
Juneau to head of Lake Marsh              178
Juneau to head of canyon                  223
Juneau to head of White Horse Rapids      225
Juneau to Tahkeena River                  240
Juneau to head of Lake Lebarge            256
Juneau to foot of Lake Lebarge            284
Juneau to Hotalinqua River                318
Juneau to Big Salmon River                349
Juneau to Little Salmon River             385
Juneau to Five Fingers Rapids             444
Juneau to Rink Rapids                     450
Juneau to White River                     599
Juneau to Stewart River                   609
Juneau to Sixty-Mile Post                 629
Juneau to Lawson City                     678
Juneau to Forty-Mile Post                 728
Juneau to Circle City                     898
Forty-Mile to diggings at Miller Creek     70
Circle City to diggings at Birch Creek     50
Klondyke to diggings                        5



A letter, written to the San Francisco Examiner by Edgar A. Mizner,
gives a graphic picture of life in the Klondyke region and the hardships
and perils that the miner may expect to meet and undergo. He is at
present the agent of the Alaska Commercial Company there. He set out
from Seattle for the Yukon in March last. He had had mining experience
before, having been frozen in one Winter on the Pend d'Oreille. Mizner
Mountain, over against the Kootenai country, is named for him, his
prospecting pick being the first to find pay ore there.

From a camp on the ice of Lake Bennett he wrote on May 6:

"It is nearly two months since I left you, and if I have not forgotten
you altogether it's not the fault of the trip, for surely it's the
devil's own. The man who wants the Yukon gold should know what he is
going to tackle before he starts. If there is an easy part of the trip I
haven't struck it yet.

"Eight of us made the trip from Juneau to Dyea, 100 miles, on the
little steam launch Alert. The steamer Mexico reached Dyea the same
morning with 423 men. As she drew so much water she had to stay about
three miles off shore and land her passengers and freight as best she
might in more or less inaccessible places on the rocky shores.

"Then up came the twenty-two-foot tide and many poor fellows saw their
entire outfits swept into the sea. The tide runs there like the Fundy
race. At Dyea there were but two houses, a store and, of course, a
saloon. So when we landed on the beach and got out on the snow and ice
we had to "rustle" for ourselves. We have kept on "rustling" for
ourselves from that on.

"We camped the first night at Dyea. It is a most enjoyable thing, this
making camp in the snow. First you must shovel down from three to six
feet to find a solid crust. Then you must go out in the snow up to your
neck to find branches with which to make a bed, and then comes the hunt
for a dead tree for firewood. Dinner is cooked on a small sheetiron

"Always keep an eye on the 'grub,' especially the bacon, for the dogs
are like so many ravenous wolves, and it is not considered just the
proper thing to be left without anything to eat in this frostbitten
land. At night it is necessary to tie up the sacks of bacon in the trees
or build trestles for them. But to the trip.

"The second day we went up Dyea canon. It is only three miles long, but
seems fully thirty. This is true of all distances in this country. About
one hundred pounds is about all a man wants to pull in this canon, as
the way is steep and the ice slippery. So camps must be made short
distances apart, as you have to go over the trail several times in
bringing up your outfit. Remember, an ordinary outfit weighs from 500 to
800 pounds, and some of them much more.

"But the summit of Chilcoot Pass--that's the place that puts the yellow
fear into many a man's heart. Some took one look at it, sold their
outfits for what they would bring and turned back. This pass is over the
ridge which skirts the coast. It is only about 1,200 feet from base to
top, but it is almost straight up and down--a sheer steep of snow and
ice. There is a blizzard blowing there most of the time, and when it is
at its height, no man may cross. For days at a time the summit is
impassable. An enterprising man named Burns has rigged a windlass and
cable there, and with this he hoists up some freight at a cent a pound.
The rest is carried over on the backs of Indians. We were detained ten
days waiting our turn to have our outfits carried over and for favoring

"After going about three miles up a dark canon a whirling snow storm
struck us. But having risen at such an unconscionable hour we would not
turn back. Our pride was near the end of us. I hope I may never
experience such another day. The air was so filled with snow that at
times it was impossible to see ten feet. It was all we could do to keep
our feet against the wind which howled down the mountain. My beard
became a mass of ice.

"The trail was soon obliterated and we were lost. But we stumbled on and
by a rare chance we came upon the handle of a shovel which marked our
cache. There was nothing to do but fight our way back to camp. The storm
did not abate in the slightest. In fact, it raged for four long days. It
was nearly dark when with knocking knees we got back to camp, more dead
than alive.

"The next day ten men made up a party to go on the same trip back for
their outfits. The day after that they were found huddled in a hole dug
in a drift eating raw bacon. After another day of rest we put masts on
our sleds, rigged sails and came across Lake Linderman and over
Linderman Portage. We are now camped on the head of Lake Bennet."

Another letter written by Mr. Mizner from Forty Mile City, as late as
June 12th, is quite as interesting. He says:

"The trip was an interesting one, but very dangerous. Many men lost
their boats and everything they had, and there are rumors of men having
been drowned. Shortly after leaving Lake Laborge we came upon a party
who had just rescued two young fellows from rocks in the middle of the
rapids. They could not save their outfit or their demolished boat, and
all they had went down the river with the rushing flood. One of the
young men had everything but his shirt stripped from him by the swirl.
We took him in charge and landed him at Klondyke.

"The big canyon between Mud Lake and Lake Laborge is a grand and
impressive place. The river above is a quarter of a mile wide, but in
the canyon it narrows to fifty feet. The walls rise on either side,
sheer and smooth, full seventy-five feet. Down rushes the water with a
frightful roar, rolling the waves at least ten feet high. Like everybody
else, we went down ahead to take a look before shooting these rapids.
From the cliff view the task seems impossible, but there is no other
way, and shoot you must. So, with Wilson at the oars to hold her
straight, I took the steering paddle, and we made for the mouth of the

"It was all over in about thirty seconds. We were through in safety, but
it was the most hair-raising thirty seconds I ever experienced. There
was quite enough thrill in it for a lifetime. Over the terrifying roar
of the water we could faintly hear the cheer put up by the undecided
hundred or more men who lined the cliffs above us. Up came the ice-cold
water against us in tubfuls. We were wet through. So was everything else
in the boat, and the boat itself half full of water. But we were soon
bailed and dried--and safe.

"Then we went on to the White House Rapids, and here we let our boat
through with long ropes. Two days later we shot the Five Finger Rapids
and the Rink Rapids without any trouble. The last four days of the trip
we fixed up our stove in the boat, and only went ashore twice for wood.
The mosquitoes on the shore are numbered by the million and are fierce
as bull terriers, but in the middle of the river they troubled us but

"The sun sinks out of sight now about 10.30 p. m., and comes up again
about 3 a. m. About midnight, however, it is almost as light as noonday.
There is no night. At Dawson there is a little sawmill and rough houses
going up in all directions, but for the most part it is a city of tents.
On the shore of the river are hundreds of boats, and others are getting
in every day.

"The Klondyke has not been one particle overrated. I have seen gold
measured by the bucketful. Just think of a man taking $800 out of one
pan of dirt. Mrs. Wilson panned out $154 out of one pan in one of the
mines I am to take charge of. This, without doubt, is the richest gold
strike the world has ever known.

"Of course all the claims in the Klondyke district are taken up now, and
there are hundreds of men who own claims valued from $50,000 to
$1,000,000. But with all these men in the country many miles of new
ground will be prospected, and from the lay of the country I think other
gold fields are certain to be located."



The fact that the Klondyke placer diggings, as thus far prospected and
developed, are well east of the 141st meridian, which forms the boundary
line between Alaska and the Dominion of Canada has attracted no little
attention among our northern neighbors, and many contradictory reports
as to what attitude the Ottawa Government will assume as to the rights
of miners who are not British subjects, have come to us. That the
Canadian Government has the right to prohibit all but British subjects
from working these diggings cannot be questioned. But, as the New York
Sun puts it, it would be preposterous to suppose that the Dominion would
really attempt to exercise its right of exclusion. Gold fields all over
the world are open to miners without regard to nationality. Canadians
to-day are free to work in the Yukon diggings on our side of the
boundary. The Dominion will do well enough in collecting its revenues
and customs duties on the new industry, and on the collateral industries
certain to spring up among the population that will flock there. Already
it has a customs officer for the district.

American miners have rushed in large numbers from Forty-mile Creek and
other points to the new Klondyke, Bonanza Creek, Eldorado Creek, or
other regions, and they have staked out their claims. The Dominion would
have its hands full in dispossessing these men, and there would be
plenty of reason for retaliation on our part. We do, it is true, exclude
Chinese immigration, but it would be dangerous for the Dominion to put
Mongolians and Americans on the same footing in an exclusion policy.

American miners who have written to the Department of State asking
protection for their Klondyke claims have no reason to worry; and, in
fact, it maybe surmised that their anxieties, rather than any
indications given by the Ottawa Government, are the source of the absurd
rumor of exclusion.



Ladue, who is a veteran prospector, and has seen all the tough mining
camps on the Pacific coast, gives this interesting description of the
new city of Dawson, which promises to have 30,000 inhabitants before

"It may be said with absolute truth that Dawson City is one of the most
moral towns of its kind in the world. There is little or no quarreling
and no brawls of any kind, though there is considerable drinking and
gambling. Every man carries a pistol if he wishes to, yet it is a rare
occurrence when one is displayed. The principal sport with mining men is
found around the gambling table. There they gather after nightfall, and
play until the late hours in the morning. They have some big games, too.
It sometimes costs as much as $50 to draw a card. A game with $2,000 as
stakes is an ordinary event. But with all of that there has not been
decided trouble. If a man is fussy and quarrelsome he is quietly told to
get out of the game, and that is the end of it.

"Many people have an idea that Dawson City is completely isolated and
can communicate with the outside world only once in every twelve months.
That is a big mistake, however. Circle City, only a few miles away, has
a mail once each month, and there we have our mail addressed. It is
true the cost is pretty high, $1 a letter and two for a paper; yet by
that expenditure of money we are able to keep in direct communication
with our friends on the outside.

"In the way of public institutions our camp is at present without any,
but by next season we will have a church, a music hall, a schoolhouse
and a hospital. The last institution will be under direct control of the
Sisters of Mercy, who have already been stationed for a long time at
Circle City and Forty-Mile Camp.

"Nearly a score of children were in Dawson City when I left, so I
donated a lot and $100 for a school. No one can buy anything on credit
in Dawson. It is spot cash for every one, and payment is always gold
dust. Very few have any regular money."

All experts estimate that the minimum supply of provisions which a man
should take to Klondyke is 1,000 pounds, though several say they
wouldn't venture in without at least one ton, as the season over the
Juneau route closes up by September 15. The rush promises to be
unprecedented, and a large number of prospectors, after being landed at
Juneau, will find it impossible to get their supplies transported. Like
all other great mining rushes, this promises to be full of

A new route to the Klondyke will be opened next spring. It is overland
from Juneau to Fort Selkirk, on the Yukon, and is entirely by land.
Captain Goodall, of the Pacific Coast Steamship Company, inspected it
this Summer, and reported it practicable. It is about 700 miles long,
and it crosses the divide over Chilkat Pass, which is lower and more
easily crossed than the Chilkoot Pass. No lakes or rivers are on the
route, but the trail runs over a high level prairie. Old Pioneer Dalton,
after whom the trail is named, is now driving a band of sheep on the
trail to Dawson City, where he expects to arrive in August, with fresh
meat for the miners. This Dalton trail is well adapted for driving
stock, but for men the tramp is too long.

"Dawson is not like most of the mining camps. It is not a 'tough' town.
Murders are almost unknown.

"The miners are a quiet and peaceable kind of men, who have gone there
to work, and are willing that everybody else shall have an equal chance
with themselves. A great deal of gambling is done in the town, but
serious quarrels are an exception. As a gambling town I think it is
equal to any that I have ever seen; and this, by the way, is always the
test of a mining camp's prosperity. Stud poker is the usual game. They
play $100 and oftentimes $200 or $500 on the third card."

L. B. Roads said: "I am located on claim 21, above the discovery on
Bonanza Creek. I did exceedingly well up there. I was among the
fortunate ones, as I cleared about $40,000, but brought only $5,000 with
me. I was the first man to get to bed rock gravel and to discover that
it was lined with gold dust and nuggets. The rock was seamed and cut in
V-shaped streaks, caused, it is supposed by glacial action. In those
seams I found a clay that was exceedingly rich. In fact, there was a
stratum of pay gravel four feet thick upon the rock, which was lined
with gold, particularly in these channels or streaks. The rock was about
sixteen feet from the surface. The discovery made the camp. It was made
on October 23, 1896, and as soon as the news spread everybody rushed to
the diggings from Circle City, Forty-Mile, and from every other camp in
the district.

"Some of the saloons here take in $300 per day in dust and nuggets. Beer
is fifty cents per drink. I have quit drinking. Logs are worth $30 per
1,000, and lumber $150 per 1,000. Most people live in tents, but cabins
are being put up rapidly.

"We have the most orderly mining community in the world. There is no
thief, no claim jumping, no cheating or swindling in the many gambling
houses. The greenhorn gets an honest game and every man's hand is
above-board. If any funny work is attempted we run the offender out."


If twenty or thirty thousand go to the mining camp, as now seems
probable, starvation will result, as it will be absolutely impossible to
feed more than ten thousand people with the supplies that are now on the
way. In another season boats can be built and arrangements made for
laying down an unlimited supply of food, but now the Alaska Commercial
Company has only three vessels, while the other two lines only run to
Juneau. Yukon river steamers are sent up in small sections and put
together on the river. They draw only three or four feet of water, but
with even this light draught they often become stranded on the sand bars
in the upper waters of the Yukon. By the Juneau waters it is impossible
to carry in any large quantity of provisions, as every pound of supplies
must be carried on Indian's backs over Chilkoot Pass and by frequent
portages that separate the lakes and streams on this overland route.
After Sept. 15 this Juneau route is impassible to all except Indians,
because of fierce storms which only Indians and experienced travellers
can face.

The Alaska Commercial Company is very fearful that starvation will occur
in the new camp this winter. President Louis Sloss said to-day that his
company would do the best it could to feed those who rushed into the
Klondyke, but he said that probably it would be impossible to get in
more than 3,200 tons of food before ice closed the Yukon River. The
company has 500 tons on the way to St. Michael's, but the river usually
freezes over about the middle of September. They have only three boats,
as one of the best boats was wrecked last spring. The supply will not
suffice for more than the number of people already at the mining camp;
so, if 20,000 or 30,000 should rush in, carrying only a small supply of
food, the stores will be compelled to limit sales to each purchaser, and
those not able to find work will starve.

Joe Ladue, who owns the town site of Dawson City, emphasized Mr. Sloss's
warning. He said no one had any idea of the amount of food required by
hearty men doing hard manual work in extreme cold weather. He said the
suffering was keen last winter because the men could not secure a
variety of food, which their systems craved. The transportation
companies sent large amounts of whiskey, which found no great sale. Then
they rushed in stoves, picks, shovels and other hardware, but the last
thing they seemed to think of delivering was food, which was needed more
than anything else. Especially the men needed such things as evaporated
potatoes, which relieve the solid diet of bacon and beans; but it will
be hopeless to try to land any of these luxuries, or even dried fruits,
which are indispensable.

A returned New Yorker said:

"'The only thing I fear is a famine the coming winter. The united
efforts of the Alaska Commercial Company and the North American
Transportation and Trading Company cannot transport over 4,500 tons of
freight up the river this season, and not until next February can stuff
be freighted over from Dyea, Juneau and other points down along the
southern coast. There was great suffering last winter, and, though no
one starved, food rates and rates for everything in the supply line were
beyond belief. Flour was $120 a hundred weight at one time and beef from
$1 to $2 a pound. Moose hams sold for about $30, or $2 per pound.
Ordinary shovels for digging brought $17 and $18 apiece, and other stuff
of that kind could not be obtained.

"'Wages, however, were proportional; $2 per hour was common wages, and
even now in these long days a man can command $1.50 per hour up here, or
from $15 to $20 per day. The river steamers cannot keep crews this
summer, for all run away to the mines as soon as they get in that
region. Indians are all the help that can be kept, and even they are
doing something in the line of locating claims.

"'The man who goes in this winter over the Chilkat and Chilkoot Passes,
or the man who goes in this summer by this steamboat route, should take
in two years' grub. I understand that steamboat companies will not
carry grub or merchandise for any man, and that they are making a flat
passenger rate of $150 for any port from Seattle to Dawson. This means
that they will get several thousand people in there this season, and if
they do not get enough grub in, grub will be high. Not less than 1,000
newcomers came over this spring and how many will come by boat we can
only conjecture.'"



Laborers, it is asserted, are paid as high as $15 a day, but the advice
is given that no man can afford to go to the new camp without from $500
to $1,000 with which to support himself and insure the possibility of
returning in case of adversity.

Living, of course, comes high. The region produces little or no fruit or
vegetables. The meat of the caribou and the moose is sometimes scarce,
and there are seasons when no salmon can be obtained.

Here is a list of prices that prevailed in Dawson City when the miners
started away:

Flour, per 100 lbs          $12.00
Moose ham, per lb             1.00
Caribou meat, per lb            65
Beans, per lb                   10
Rice, per lb                    25
Sugar, per lb                   25
Bacon, per lb                   40
Butter, per roll              1.50
Eggs, per doz                 1.50
Better eggs, per doz          2.00
Salmon, each         $1.00 to 1.50
Potatoes, per lb                25
Turnips, per lb                 15
Tea, per lb                   1.00
Coffee, per lb                  50
Dried fruits, per lb            35
Canned fruits                   50
Lemons, each                    20
Oranges, each                   50
Tobacco, per lb               1.50
Liquors, per drink              50
Shovels                       2.50
Picks                         5.00
Coal oil, per gal             1.00
Overalls                      1.50
Underwear, per suit  $5.00 to 7.50
Shoes                         5.00
Rubber boots          $10 to 15.00

Based on supply and demand the above quoted prices may vary several
hundred per cent. on some articles at any time.



There is a short, hot Summer of less than four months, with practically
no Spring or Autumn. The ice begins to break up in the rivers about May
25, and navigation commences on the Yukon about the first week in June.
It begins to get very cool by the latter part of September, and is
almost Winter weather by the 1st of October. The winter is very cold and
dry, with not more than three feet of snow. There is only about three
inches of rainfall during the winter and not more than a foot or ten
inches the whole year around.

It is a country in which it is very hard to find food, as there is
practically no game. Before the whites went into the region there were
not more than 300 natives. They had hard work to support themselves on
account of the scarcity of game.

The thermometer sometimes goes down to 68 degrees below zero in January
and February. The cold, however, is not so intense as may be imagined,
and 68 degrees there could not be compared with the same here. The dress
is mostly of furs in the Winter, that used by the natives, and unless
there is a sharp wind blowing one may keep fairly comfortable.

After this there is scarcely a let up before the middle of the
following March. Just before reaching Lake Linderman the famous Chilcoot
Pass is encountered, and woe to the traveller who is caught in one of
the snow storms, which spring up with the suddenness of an April shower
and rage for days. They are frozen simoons. Nature has provided at the
pass a protection against these terrific outbreaks in the shape of an
immense overhanging rock. At the top of the pass it was the custom in
former years for the Indians to corral the wild sheep and goats, which
were to be found in large numbers in all the surrounding mountains. The
species now is practically extinct.

This route, by the way of Juneau, is a fine trip of 1,000 miles or so.
For an individual it is more costly, but for a party it is cheaper.

At the head of Lake Linderman is a saw mill, where prospectors are
permitted to prepare the lumber for the boats necessary to complete the
journey to the camp.

This work generally consumes five or six days, but if the prospector is
in a hurry he can purchase a boat, the average price being $80. Then he
floats on and on for hundreds of miles and finally reaches the gold and
the miners and the Arctic circle.



Mr. William Van Stooten, the mining engineer and metallurgist, gives his
views in the New York Herald as to the necessary outfit required by
miners contemplating a trip to the Klondyke diggings. He says:

"I should place the minimum amount at $600. It would not be safe to
start out with less. But you had better make it a thousand if possible,
for with the present rush it is likely that prices will be trebled or
even quadrupled. Even the Indians will charge more for their assistance.
Still, if a man is stranded on the way he will probably find it easy to
make a living almost anywhere in the gold bearing portion of the Yukon
basin. He can earn $10 or $15 a day digging the ground for men with good
claims. And with the rise in prices these wages may also go up. Bear in
mind, however, that the price of living must increase in proportion."

"What would you consider the proper outfit for a miner in starting out?"

"Well, the matter of clothing must be left to individual taste, needs
and means. But the miners usually adopt the native costume. The boots,
usually made by the Coast Indians, are of several varieties. The water
boot is of seal and walrus skin, while the dry weather or winter boot is
of all varieties of styles and material. The more expensive have fur
trimmed legs, elaborately designed. They cost from $2 to $5 a pair.
Trousers are often made of Siberian fawn skin and the skin of the
marmot, or ground squirrel. The parka, or upper garment, is usually of
marmot skins, trimmed with wolverine around the hood and lower edge, the
long hair from the sides of the wolverine being used for the hood. This
hair is sometimes five or six inches in length, and is useful in
protecting the face of the wearer. Good, warm flannels can be worn under
the parka, and the whole outfit will weigh less than the ordinary
clothes worn in a country where the weather gets down to zero. The parka
is almost cold proof. But it is expensive, ranging in price from $25 to
$100. Blankets and fur robes are used for bedding. Lynx skins make the
best robes. Good ones cost $100. But cheaper robes can be made of the
skins of bear, mink, red fox and the Arctic hare. The skins of the
latter animal make warm socks to be worn with the skin boots.

Dress is only one item. Every miner must take his own food with him.
Here is a list of provisions made out by an expert as sufficient to last
a man for one month:--

Twenty pounds of flour, with baking powder; twelve pounds of bacon, six
pounds of beans, five pounds of desiccated vegetables, four pounds of
butter, five pounds of sugar, four cans of milk, one pound of tea, three
pounds of coffee, two pounds of salt, five pounds of corn meal, pepper,

The following utensils would not be too many:--

One frying pan, one water kettle, one Yukon stove, one bean pot, two
plates, one drinking cup, one teapot, one knife and fork, one large and
one small cooking pan.

The following tools are necessary for boat building:

One jack plane, one whipsaw, one hand saw, one rip saw, one draw knife,
one axe, one hatchet, one pocket knife, six pounds assorted nails, three
pounds oakum, three pounds of pitch, fifty feet of five-eighths rope.

Other necessaries would be a tent, a rubber blanket, mosquito netting
and matches. It is also desirable to take along a small, well filled
medicine chest, a rifle, a trout line and a pair of snow glasses to
provide against snow blindness.

The entire outfit can be obtained in Juneau, where one can be sure of
getting just what is needed, without any extra weight, which is a matter
of great importance, as many hard portages are to be encountered on the
trip. Hitherto prices in Juneau have been reasonable. Of course one
cannot say what may be the result of the present rush in the way of
raising prices."


A woman who has "been there," says that in the matter of dress a woman
going to the mines should take two pairs of extra heavy all-wool
blankets, one small pillow, one fur robe, one warm shawl, one fur coat,
easy fitting; three warm woollen dresses, with comfortable bodices and
skirts knee length flannel-lined preferable; three pairs of knickers or
bloomers to match the dresses, three suits of heavy all-wool underwear,
three warm flannel night dresses, four pairs of knitted woollen
stockings, one pair of rubber boots, three gingham aprons that reach
from neck to knees, small roll of flannel for insoles, wrapping the feet
and bandages; a sewing kit, such toilet articles as are absolutely
necessary, including some skin unguent to protect the face from the icy
cold, two light blouses or shirt waists for Summer wear, one oilskin
blanket to wrap her effects in, to be secured at Juneau or St. Michaels;
one fur cape, two pairs of fur gloves, two pairs of surseal moccasins,
two pairs of muclucs--wet weather moccasins.

She wears what she pleases en route to Juneau or St. Michaels, and when
she makes her start for the diggings she lays aside every civilized
travelling garb, including shoes and stays, until she comes out. Instead
of carrying the fur robe, fur coat and rubber boots along, she can get
them on entering Alaska, but the experienced ones say take them along.

The natives make a fur coat, with hood attached, called a "parka," but
it is clumsy for a white woman to wear who has been accustomed to fitted
garments. Leggings and shoes are not so safe nor desirable as the
moccasins. A trunk is not the thing to transport baggage in. It is much
better in a pack, with the oilskin cover well tied on. The things to add
that are useful, but not absolutely necessary, are chocolate, coffee and
the smaller light luxuries.



The New York Herald is authority for the statement that few persons in
the mining world are more intimately acquainted with all its features
than Mr. William Van Stooten, mining engineer and metallurgist. Besides
being President of the South American Developing Company, which works
the gold mines of Ecuador, he has relations with all the great gold
mines of the world. To Mr. Van Stooten it appears that the gold
discoveries in the Klondyke regions are the most important that have
ever been made.

"Of course," he says, "there is a tendency to exaggeration in these
matters which must always be discounted. It is well to bear in mind that
the author of Munchausen was what was known in his day as a mining
adventurer. Herr Rapp was a German who went over to England to develop
the copper mines there. The nature of his business may have stimulated
his imagination to the marvellous flights of that bit of fiction. But
after making all possible allowances for exaggeration there is an
obvious residuum of truth in the reports that come from the Yukon basin.
And that residuum indicates something more extraordinary than anything
recalled by a backward glance at the facts of 'forty-nine.'

"No such specifically large amounts of gold were taken out by
individuals during any similar period of California gold hunting. Two
months of work in the water has realized more than any six months
heretofore known in the history of gold mining. We know that Ladue, the
Alaska trader, has actually taken in fabulous wealth in the natural
course of his business.

"We had long been aware that there was gold in the Yukon basin, but the
total output for the last ten years before the Klondyke developments
amounted to not more than a million dollars' worth at the utmost. Now,
within two months, five millions have been taken out of the Klondyke
regions. It took the first eight months of work in California to pan out
that amount under infinitely more favorable conditions of climate and
weather. That is a straw worth noting.

"There are just two ways at present, each of which has its advantages
and its disadvantages. You may go by way of the Pacific Ocean and the
Yukon River. From Seattle to St. Michael's takes two weeks. In the right
season it takes two weeks more to sail up the Yukon from St. Michael's
to Circle City. As the waters along the way are very shallow only
flat-bottom side-wheelers can accomplish the voyage. Above Circle City
the waters become too shallow even for this sort of craft. It is three
hundred miles from Circle City to the scene of the latest discoveries.
These hundred miles can only be covered by walking. Dog sleds draw all
the necessary munitions. Reindeer, as well as dogs, have been tried
successfully, and probably the deer will eventually supersede the

"The other route, by way of Juneau, involves a tramp of seven hundred
miles to the Klondyke. But in the warm season it is possible to traverse
a large part of the distance in canoes through the congeries of lakes,
all connected by more or less navigable streams."

"When would you advise prospective gold diggers to start by either St.
Michael's or Juneau?"

"Under all circumstances they should wait until the approach of next
spring. It is too late in the season to think of going now. It is true
that the distance from Juneau to the Klondyke can be made in sleds and
snowshoes. But if the voyagers arrive on the spot after the middle of
September they will find it entirely impossible to do any prospecting.
The creeks are frozen and covered with snow. No clew to the presence of
gold can be found. Now, even if the diggers arrive in June it may take
them weeks or months to locate a desirable claim. But, once located,
they can continue their work even in the depth of winter. Great fires
are built around the claim, which are kept continually burning. Thus the
ground is thawed out for digging during the winter months and is made
ready for the reappearance of the sun and the inflowing of the waters.
Then the dirt can be treated in pans or long toms. Owing to these
peculiar difficulties it is likely that the place will continue one for
poor man's mining and will be not be monopolized by capital."

"You advise people to wait until Spring. But don't you think the cream
of the claims will be skimmed next year?"

"Not at all. One hundred thousand people might disperse themselves in
the Yukon gold-bearing grounds and hardly know of the presence of
neighbors. There may be other diggings over this vast area quite as good
as the Klondyke diggings. As in all the gold mining regions, diggings
everywhere vary considerably in value. It is not improbable even that
the late comers will take up the abandoned washings of the earlier men
and do well with them. This frequently happened in California. As
settlements grow up and the facilities for comfortable living and
effective work increase, it is possible that gold may be found in places
where it was never dreamed of. There is no doubt that eventually a
number of valuable ledges will be found, but the bulk of the gold will
come from placers. This is nature's process for concentrating gold from
the quartz ledges. You know, however, what is the natural course of
development in newly discovered gold fields?"

"Well, here it is. First come the men with pans to gather in the riches
that lie on the surface. It is possible for an active man to wash out a
cubic yard, or 100 pounds of pay dirt in a day.

"Next follow associations of miners using 'Long Toms' and cradles.

"The third stage takes the form of hydraulic mining, by means of water
brought from long distances.

"Fourth, and last, comes quartz mining under ground.

"This is the sequence that has always occurred. But it may take years
before the final stage is reached in the Yukon, owing to the
difficulties already pointed out."


The New York Journal, in keeping with its usual liberality and
enterprise, has sent out a large expedition at its own expense. The
Journal says:

"To investigate the riches of the Yukon gold fields and to tell the tale
of Nature and human nature in the new ophir of the far North for the
Journal, a company of five distinguished writers have been sent to the
gold fields. Edward H. Hamilton, chief of the Journal bureau, is
admirably equipped for his task. His writings have given him a high
repute and his letters will discover to the world the life at Klondyke,
as well as tell the sordid tale of the gains of the diggers. Charles
Gregory Yale is one of the prominent mining experts of the West. For
several years he has been statistician of the Mint at San Francisco and
assistant in the California State Mining Bureau. He is a facile writer,
having had a long experience as editor of the "Mining and Scientific
Press," of San Francisco. Edward J. Livernash is a lawyer and
journalist, a careful investigator and an able descriptive writer.
Joaquin Miller, the gray poet of the Sierras, will sing for the Journal
a new song of the St. Elias Alps. Mrs. Norman Brough, known to readers
by her pen name, "Helen Dare," will have the opportunity to write of a
woman's experience digging gold in the placers and housekeeping in a
sunless land, with the thermometer at 60 below zero."



The gold fever has struck the hardy mariner at last, and desertions are
numerous from ships up north.

Shippers expect soon to hear of craft being tied up in Alaskan ports
just as they were in San Francisco harbor in '49, when crews deserted
wholesale to dig gold in the rich placers.

When the steamship Pueblo arrived, Capt. Debney reported that the mates
of the Al-ki and the Topeka had both left their ships in Juneau. Other
steamer captains before they left recently said they would be lucky if
they managed to keep enough men to work ship after they reached the
northern ports.

Capt. Debney says that when the Portland reached St. Michael's on her
last trip up one of the firemen, who had made friends with some of the
miners aboard, handed in his resignation and asked for a ticket up the

It was refused him on the ground that he was a deserter. He twice
offered money without avail. The miners held the ship for twelve hours.

At the expiration of that time the company put up a notice that the
Portland would start on her return trip at a certain hour. The miners
held a meeting and appointed a committee of twelve to wait on the
company's agent. The committee filed into the agent's office, where each
man drew a revolver and laid it on the agent's table. They demanded that
a ticket be given the fireman at once, and the agent complied. The
fireman went with the party up the Yukon.

Capt. Debney reports that the Queen, which sailed from Puget Sound
several days ago, passed the American port officials all right, but when
the vessel reached Victoria the customs officials decided that she was
overloaded and took fifteen of the miners ashore. They are now stopping
at the Victoria Hotel at the expense of the Pacific Steamship Company,
and will be sent north on a later vessel.

Capt. Debney has received a letter from his son, who is agent for the
Alaska Commercial Company at Dawson. He reports that there are now at
Dawson thirty-five saloons, one theatre, eight dance houses, three
general stores, five bakeries, five restaurants, two barber shops, one
candy maker and three laundries.



F. G. Bowker, of Dawson, says there was nobody there to die until less
than a year ago, and that since then there have been but three deaths in
that whole district as far as is known.

Of the three deaths one occurred just before the steamer Excelsior left
Dawson. A man who had just sold his claim for $12,000 passed away in his
bunk with his head resting on the sack of coin which represented the
success of his search for wealth.

In the graveyard at Forty Mile, which has served for all that section
for some years past, there are only thirty or forty graves. Few die
within reach of settlements without medical aid and spiritual advice.

There are missions of several Protestant denominations, as well as
Russian and Roman Catholic missions, at frequent intervals throughout
the country. Funerals are not as ostentatious as in the civilized world,
but everything that is necessary is reverentially done by rough but
kindly miners.

The tale about confiscation of dead men's effects by friends and
neighbors is branded as a malicious lie.

It is one of the unwritten laws of the Yukon that these shall be turned
over to the Government and disposed of according to statute laws.



As the Klondyke diggings, as thus far developed and staked, are upon
Canadian territory it is important to bear in mind the regulations
imposed by the Dominion Government on placer mining. They are as

"Bar diggings" shall mean any part of a river over which the water
extends when the water is in its flooded state and which is not covered
at low water. "Mines on benches" shall be known as bench diggings, and
shall for the purpose of defining the size of such claims be excepted
from dry diggings. "Dry diggings" shall mean any mine over which a river
never extends. "Miner" shall mean a male or female over the age of
eighteen, but not under that age. "Claims" shall mean the personal right
of property in a placer mine or diggings during the time for which the
grant of such mine or diggings is made. "Legal post" shall mean a stake
standing not less than four feet above the ground and squared on four
sides for at least one foot from the top. "Close season" shall mean the
period of the year during which placer mining is generally suspended.
The period to be fixed by the gold commissioner in whose district the
claim is situated. "Locality" shall mean the territory along a river
(tributary of the Yukon) and its affluents. "Mineral" shall include all
minerals whatsoever other than coal.

1. Bar diggings. A strip of land 100 feet wide at highwater mark and
thence extending along the river to its lowest water level.

2. The sides of a claim for bar diggings shall be two parallel lines
run as nearly as possible at right angles to the stream, and shall be
marked by four legal posts, one at each end of the claim at or about
high water mark; also one at each end of the claim at or about the edge
of the water. One of the posts shall be legibly marked with the name of
the miner and the date upon which the claim is staked.

3. Dry diggings shall be 100 feet square and shall have placed at each
of its four corners a legal post, upon one of which shall be legibly
marked the name of the miner and the date upon which the claim was

4. Creek and river claims shall be 500 feet long, measured in the
direction of the mineral course of the stream, and shall extend in width
from base to base of the hill or bench on each side, but when the hills
or benches are less than 100 feet apart the claim may be 100 feet in
depth. The sides of a claim shall be two parallel lines run as nearly as
possible at right angles to the stream. The sides shall be marked with
legal posts at or about the edge of the water and at the rear boundary
of the claim. One of the legal posts at the stream shall be legibly
marked with the name of the miner and the date upon which the claim was

5. Bench claims shall be 100 feet square.

6. In defining the size of claims they shall be measured horizontally,
irrespective of inequalities on the surface of the ground.

7. If any person or persons shall discover a new mine and such discovery
shall be established to the satisfaction of the gold commissioner, a
claim for the bar diggings 750 feet in length may be granted. A new
stratum of auriferous earth or gravel situated in a locality where the
claims are abandoned shall for this purpose be deemed a new mine,
although the same locality shall have previously been worked at a
different level.

8. The forms of application for a grant for placer mining and the grant
of the same shall be according to those made, provided or supplied by
the gold commissioner.

9. A claim shall be recorded with the gold commissioner in whose
district it is situated within three days after the location thereof if
it is located within ten miles of the commissioner's office. One day
extra shall be allowed for making such record for every additional ten
miles and fraction thereof.

10. In the event of the absence of the gold commissioner from his office
for entry a claim may be granted by any person whom he may appoint to
perform his duties in his absence.

11. Entry shall not be granted for a claim which has not been staked by
the applicant in person in the manner specified in these resolutions. An
affidavit that the claim was staked out by the applicant shall be
embodied in the application.

12. An entry free of $15 shall be charged the first year and an annual
fee of $100 for each of the following years:

13. After recording a claim the removal of any post by the holder
thereof or any person acting in his behalf for the purpose of changing
the boundaries of his claim shall act as a forfeiture of the claim.

14. The entry of every holder for a grant for placer mining must be
renewed and his receipt relinquished and replaced every year, the entry
fee being paid each year.

15. No miner shall receive a grant for more than one mining claim in the
same locality, but the same miner may hold any number of claims by
purchase and any number of miners may unite to work their claims in
common on such terms as they may arrange, provided such agreement be
registered with the gold commissioner and a fee of $5 paid for each

16. Any miner or miners may sell, mortgage or dispose of his or their
claims provided such disposal be registered with and a fee of $5 paid to
the gold commissioner, who shall thereupon give the assignee a
certificate of his title.

17. Every miner shall during the continuance of his grant have the
exclusive right of entry upon his own claim for the miner-like working
thereof and the construction of a residence thereon, and shall be
entitled exclusively to all the proceeds realized therefrom, but he
shall have no surface rights therein, and the gold commissioner may
grant to the holders of adjacent claims such rights of entry thereon as
may be absolutely necessary for the working of their claims upon such
terms as may to him seem reasonable. He may also grant permits to miners
to cut timber thereon for their own use upon payment of the dues
prescribed by the regulations in that behalf.

18. Every miner shall be entitled to the use of so much of the water
naturally flowing through or past his claim and not already lawfully
appropriated, as shall in the opinion of the gold commissioner be
necessary for the working thereof, and shall be entitled to drain his
own claim free of charge.

19. A claim shall be deemed to be abandoned and open to occupation and
entry by any person when the same shall have remained unworked on
working days by the grantee thereof or by some person in his behalf for
the space of seventy-two hours unless sickness or other reasonable cause
may be shown to the satisfaction of the gold commissioner, or unless the
grantee is absent on leave given by the commissioner, and the gold
commissioner, upon obtaining evidence satisfactory to himself that this
provision is not being complied with, may cancel the entry given for a

20. If the land upon which a claim has been located is not the property
of the Crown it will be necessary for the person who applies for entry
to furnish proof that he has acquired from the owner of the land the
surface right before entry can be granted.

21. If the occupier of the lands has not received a patent thereof the
purchase money of the surface rights must be paid to the Crown and a
patent of the surface rights will issue to the party who acquired the
mining rights. The money so collected will either be refunded to the
occupier of the land when he is entitled to a patent there or will be
credited to him on account of payment of land.

22. When the party obtaining the mining rights cannot make an
arrangement with the owner thereof for the acquisition of the surface
rights it shall be lawful for him to give notice to the owner or his
agents or the occupier to appoint an arbitrator to act with another
arbitrator named by him in order to award the amount of compensation to
which the owner or occupier shall be entitled.


Some of the miners who have recently returned from the mines say that
those who wait until the Spring before going to Alaska will make a
mistake, as there is room on the Yukon and around Dawson City for 5,000
miners. During the Winter months they can occupy themselves taking out
the frozen earth, and thus have it ready for washing in the Summer.

       *       *       *       *       *

The most trustworthy estimates agree that over $5,000,000, in nuggets
and gold dust has been the value of the output of the Alaska mines
during the year.

       *       *       *       *       *

It is estimated by many that in the mines already being worked on the
Klondyke alone there is over $50,000,000 worth of gold in sight, and
that this will all be mined in a year.

       *       *       *       *       *

A new field, rich in gold, and that has not yet been worked, has been
discovered near the mouth of the Tananar River, which is a tributary of
the Yukon, and is the second largest river in Alaska.

       *       *       *       *       *

There is hardly any darkness in Alaska in the Summer season. One can see
to read at 10 o'clock at night and at 2 in the morning.

       *       *       *       *       *

Both the Chilkoot and White Passes are practically on the boundary
between the United States and Canadian territories. They are in the
same latitude and are only twenty or thirty miles apart. After reaching
the head of navigation, the Juneau parties bound for the Yukon turn west
through the mountains by Chilkoot Pass. If they used the White Pass they
would turn east and circumvent the mountain on the east side. The White
Pass has not been utilized by mining parties, the Chilkoot being the
usual route, and the Chilkat Pass, further north, being used to a much
less extent.

       *       *       *       *       *

There is no abatement of the Klondyke fever in Seattle, and it appears
to be extending all over the Northwest. Hundreds are being liberally
grubstaked and experienced miners are in active demand. From $500 to
$600 is given them and they share half their finds.

       *       *       *       *       *

The first mining company to file articles of incorporation is the Alaska
and Yukon Exploration and Trading Company, Limited. The capital stock is
$200,000, fully subscribed.

       *       *       *       *       *

Every claim within miles of the Klondyke is taken up, and nearly 5,000
people are at the new diggings. Those who got in late have gone further
to the northeast of the Klondyke, looking for new locations, and the
matter of hunting gold in Alaska has resolved itself into a proposition
of finding a mother lode and new pockets.

       *       *       *       *       *

There is an enormous demand for miners' outfits in Seattle and in San
Francisco, and the outfitters' employees are working night and day.

       *       *       *       *       *

It is believed that it will take all the steamers and idle sailing
vessels on the Pacific coast, from San Francisco to Seattle, to carry
the gold-seekers now preparing to start for the new Eldorado of the
Northwest, and thousands will be forced reluctantly to wait until next
spring, owing to lack of transportation facilities.

       *       *       *       *       *

The steamship people are amazed at the number of "tenderfeet" who have
been struck by the craze. There has never been anything equal to it,
they say, and the end is not yet. The cashier of the Alaska Company says
that if they had sufficient boats on hand there would be, in his
opinion, at least 20,000 people go up the Yukon this fall. There are not
enough provisions now in Dawson to feed those already there, and only a
limited supply can be transported there before the winter blockade

       *       *       *       *       *

An outfitting firm in Seattle received a cablegram from London, England,
asking if 5,000 men could be outfitted there.

The Alaskan and British American gold field fever has struck Texas.
Reports from many places indicate preparations for a rush to the
Northwest. Inquiries are being made at every railroad office concerning
routes and rates of transportation.

       *       *       *       *       *

A pinch of gold dust pays for a drink in Dawson City. As the barkeeper
takes the pinch out of the miner's bag barkeepers with broad thumbs
receive the highest wages.

       *       *       *       *       *

Perhaps the most interesting reading in the Milling Record is the
letters written by men in the Klondyke to friends in Juneau. Here is one
from "Casey" Moran:

     DAWSON, March 20, 1897.

     "Friend George: Don't pay any attention to what any one says, but
     come in at your earliest opportunity. My God! It is appalling to
     hear the truth, but nevertheless the world has never produced its
     equal before. Well, come. That's all. Your friend.


       *       *       *       *       *

If you don't start for the Pacific coast for the mines before the 1st of
September, do not start until the 15th of next April.

       *       *       *       *       *

May, June and July are the months in which work with pan and cradle can
be done. During the rest of the year king frost reigns.

       *       *       *       *       *

The Klondyke mean temperature is: Spring, 14 degrees above zero; Summer.
59 above zero: Autumn, 17 above zero; Winter, 30 below zero. There are,
of course, extremes above and below these figures.

       *       *       *       *       *

To hold a claim three months' work annually must be done on it. In
default of this the land reverts to the Government.

       *       *       *       *       *

The laws of Canada are severe on claim jumpers and on those who
interfere with the rights of legitimate claimants.


The Mining News Publishing Company was formed for the purpose of
furnishing reliable information regarding the Alaska gold fields to all
who may be interested.

This book, "All About the Klondyke," is the first of a series to be
issued as fast as news is received and mines are developed.

Reliable correspondents, now in the mines, will keep us informed
regarding all matters of interest, and everything of importance that is
published anywhere regarding mining or the Alaska gold field will be
verified and published for the benefit of our patrons.

Bogus companies and fraudulent syndicates will be investigated and, when
necessary, exposed and warning given to the public regarding them.

There are already in the field more than one "syndicate" or "company"'
formed by impecunious and irresponsible persons whose object is to sell
shares in mines, or stock in enterprises, that promise to carry men to
the mines and to furnish them with outfits and claims on payment of
certain specified sums.

The standing and character of all companies and syndicates should be
carefully investigated before any one intrusts money to them.

The exodus to the mines must cease in August owing to the impossibility
of reaching the gold fields during the Alaskan cold season, and after
August no one will sail for Alaskan ports until about the 15th of April

There is, therefore, plenty of time for intending prospectors and miners
to inform themselves thoroughly regarding everything necessary to know
about the mines, routes of travel, outfit, etc., and for investors, who
are not going to the mines, to satisfy themselves regarding the
reliability of the mining companies that are and will be advertising
their alluring and seductive money-making schemes.

There are some companies, now formed and forming, that agree to furnish
outfit, transportation and food to those who will contract to mine on
shares when they reach the mines. There are others that offer
opportunity to individuals and to clubs of men--ten or more--who will
subscribe from $600 to $1,000, to benefit in one-half of the profits,
and who agree to have a substitute sent to represent the individual or
club subscribers. These are legitimate and reliable and much profit may
come to those who invest with them.

The Mining News Publishing Company has no financial or other interest or
connection with any mining Company or Syndicate and is, therefore, in a
position to give unbiased and reliable advice regarding any of them.
Its purpose--besides the publishing of news to protect, warn and advise
the public.

We will furnish any one with the prospectus of companies that are safe
and solvent, and that we know to be worthy and financially strong. Ten
cents in stamps should be sent when inquiring for such a prospectus,
either of a Mining Company selling shares, or of a grub-stake or
outfitting syndicate.

Correspondents who desire confidential advice regarding any company or
syndicate will receive the best information at our command. A fee of $1
will be charged for answering such letters.

Improvements in means of transportation, routes and trails to the mines
will go on from time to time. Changes in cost of provisions and mining
supplies, and in modes of mining will take place. Regarding all this we
shall be promptly informed and will, at all times, be in possession of
the latest information.

Questions regarding routes, cost of outfit, transportation, or regarding
any other matter connected with mining or the mines, will be answered by
letter, written by experienced miners in our employ here, for a fee of
$1 enclosed with each query.

Address "The Mining News Publishing Company, 60 Liberty Street, New

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