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Title: A Report on Washington Territory
Author: Ruffner, William Henry
Language: English
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The matter of this Report on Washington Territory is so arranged that
the reader, by referring to the table of contents, can turn at once to
any particular topic. The report is divided into six chapters, to wit:

_First_, Itinerary, which mentions briefly the places I visited, and the

_Second_, A General Account of Washington Territory, which includes
something of its History, its Location, and its great Pacific Market.
Under the last of these heads is given a large body of facts which will
surprise any one who has not studied the peculiar commercial advantages
of our Pacific States, and above all, of Puget Sound. There is also
given some account of the topography, climate, soils and natural
vegetation, with special stress upon the great forests of the Puget
Sound basin. The lumber industry is next described, followed by a
somewhat full account of agricultural products, especially those of the
Great Plain of the Columbia River. Finally, in this division, something
is said of the available labor of the country.

_Third_, Geology of Washington Territory. In one division I endeavor to
give the Historical and Structural Geology of the Territory, and in
another division I give the Economic Geology. In the latter I describe
the beds of coal, iron ore, granite, limestone and marble, and also the
ores of the precious and base metals as they have been discovered in all
parts of the Territory.

_Fourth_, the special interests of the Seattle, Lake Shore and Eastern
Railway are discussed. I begin with Seattle, to show its advantages as a
terminus. I then say something of the terminal property owned by this
Company, and of the suburban interests of many kinds, such as
residences, parks, gardens and industrial works which are likely to grow
up along the first twenty miles of this railway. I then take up the
great timber interest along the line, which, in its magnitude and value,
will give this road pre-eminence over all others. The agricultural
products along the line are next spoken of. I then take up the great
coal interest which will minister so largely to the road--an interest
whose magnitude can be readily inferred from the fact that this railway
will pass through, or near, five and perhaps six distinct coal fields
between Puget Sound and the Columbia River. I next show the advantages
which this road will have in the development of the great magnetic
iron-ore beds on both sides of the Cascade Mountains, and also the
remarkable juxtaposition of ore, flux and fuel, which are found in the
Snoqualmie Valley. Attention is also called to the business which is
likely to arise from the limestones, marble and granite for building and
monumental purposes. Finally, I call attention to the great advantage
which this road will have, or, at least, may have, in controlling the
large and increasing business connected with the mines of precious and
base metals, which are being opened north and east of this line.

_Fifth_, Cities and Towns are briefly noticed which will, or may, bear
an important relation to the Seattle Road.

_Sixth_, a supplementary chapter, giving latest information.

    W. H. RUFFNER.




ITINERARY                                                             17

    Great Plain, 17--Cascade Mountains, 17--Hop Ranch,
    17--Snoqualmie Pass, 18--Guye Mines, 18--Mt. Logan,
    18--Denny Mines, 19--Salal Prairie, 19--Moss Bay Co.,
    19--Raging River, 20--Gilman Mines, 20--Blakeley Mills,
    20--Wilkeson Mines, 20--Kirke's Coal Mines, 21--Portland,
    23--Spokane Falls, 23--Good weather, 25.

GENERAL ACCOUNT OF WASHINGTON TERRITORY                               26

  HISTORICAL                                                          26

    Denny, of Denny Mines, 26--Causes of delay in settlement,
    26--Population of Washington Territory, 27.

  LOCATION AND MARKET                                                 27

    Majority of the human race in the countries of the
    Pacific, 28--Change in the currents of trade, 28--The
    China trade, 29--The trade of the Amoor River, Japan,
    etc., 31--The new railroad across Siberia to St.
    Petersburg, 32--The American Pacific States have decisive
    advantages over all others in controlling the Pacific
    trade, 33--Advantages in distances, 34.

  ROUGH ESTIMATES OF DISTANCES                                        34

    Advantage in productions, 36--Coastwise trade, 36--South
    American trade, 36--Large existing trade, 37.

  TABLE--Ports of the Pacific showing total value of Exports of
    Domestic Merchandise for year ending June 30, 1885, June
    30, 1887, and total value of Imports of Merchandise for
    year ending June 30, 1885, June 30, 1887.

JUNE 30, 1885                                                         39

  APPENDIX--List of Exports of Domestic Merchandise, year ending
    June 30, 1885. Exported from the seven Customs Districts
    of the Pacific, 39--List of Imports of Merchandise, year
    ending June 30, 1885. Imported into the seven Customs
    Districts of the Pacific                                          41


  TOPOGRAPHY OF WASHINGTON TERRITORY                                  43

    Puget Sound, 44--Lake Washington, 44--West Washington and
    East Washington, 45--Coeur d'Alene Mountains, 46--The
    Great Plateau, 47--Coulées, 47--Columbia and Snake Rivers,

  ALTITUDES IN WASHINGTON TERRITORY                                   49

  CLIMATE                                                             49

    The climate of Washington Territory, 49--Mild and equable,
    51--Rainfall, 51--No blizzards or cyclones,
    53--Differences between East and West Washington,
    53--Chinook wind, 55.

  SOILS                                                               55

    Soils all fertile, 55.

  TEMPERATURES IN DEGREES FAHRENHEIT                                  56

  SIGNAL SERVICE                                                      57

    A remarkable soil, 60.

  NATURAL VEGETATION                                                  61

    Vast vegetation, 61--Deciduous trees, 62--Larch,
    62--Extraordinary evergreen forests, 63--Douglas fir, or
    Oregon pine, 63--The best of ship timber, 64--White cedar,
    65--Beautiful house lumber, 65--Hemlock spruce,
    65--Tanners wanted, 66--White pine, 66--Balsam fir,
    66--Large supply of Canada Balsam, 67--The yew, 67--The
    superior timber of Snoqualmie Valley, 67--Range for horses
    and cattle, 69.

  LUMBERING                                                           69

    Magnitude of the lumber business, 70--Vast extent of the
    lumber market, 70--The great saw-mills, 71--Profits and
    prices, 73.

  AGRICULTURE                                                         73

    Clearing the land, 73--Demand for agricultural products,
    74--Large crops, 74--Hop-growing on a large scale, 74--The
    changed agricultural conditions of East Washington,
    75--Irrigation in the Yakima Valley, 75--Varied crops,
    77--The Great Plain, 77--Boundaries, 78--Early history,
    78--Area and population, 79--Amazing wheat crops:
    surpassing all other States, 79--Railroads overwhelmed
    with freight, 80--Price of wheat and cost of production,
    81--Also barley and oats, 83--The soil a natural
    fertilizer, 84--Quality of the wheat, 84--The market in
    England, China, and other Asiatic ports, 85--Astonishing
    growth of vegetables, 85--Crops without rain, 86--West
    (not East) Washington to be the great cattle country,
    86--Tree-planting, 87.

  LABOR                                                               88

    Good supply of labor, but more wanted, 88--Wages, 88.

THE GEOLOGY OF WASHINGTON TERRITORY                                   90

  HISTORICAL AND STRUCTURAL                                           90

    The Western Coast regions younger than the Rocky Mountains
    and Appalachians, 91--An outlying Continent, 91--The rise
    of the West Coast, 92--The rocks and minerals of the
    Cascade Mountains, 93--The metamorphic rocks of doubtful
    origin, 93--The coal beds, 94--The volcanic mountains and
    their great activity, 95--The wonderful cañon of the
    Columbia River, 96--The great sheets of basalt, 96--Origin
    of the rich soil of East Washington, 97--The volcanoes not
    wholly extinct, 98--Glacial drift, 98.

  ECONOMIC GEOLOGY                                                    99

  I. Coal                                                             99

    Thickness of the Coal Measures, 99--Fifteen workable
    seams, 100--Different kinds of coal described, 100--The
    chemical changes in coal beds, 101--Deficient
    nomenclature, 102--Lignite an unsuitable name for the
    coals of Washington Territory, 103--The coking quality not
    general in these coals, but found in some, 104--Analyses
    of Washington Territory coals, 106.

  THE COLLIERIES                                                     106

    Authorities, 106.

  COALS AND LIGNITES                                                 107

    The different mines, 108.

  _a._ Carbon River Group                                            108

    Anthracite, coking and gas coals, 108.

  _b._ The Green River Group                                         110
    The Common Point, equidistant between Tacoma and Seattle,
    111--Franklin and Black Diamond mines, 112--The Kirke or
    Moss Bay Company (English) mines, 112.

  _c._ The Cedar River Group                                         117

    Cedar River mines, 117--Talbot and Renton mines,
    118--Newcastle Mine, 118--Cost of mining, 119--Large
    production, 119--Misrepresentation, 120--Correction by Mr.
    Whitworth, 122.

  _d._ The Squak Creek, Raging River, and Snoqualmie Group           125

    Gilman Mines, 125--Structure of Squak Mountain,
    125--Peculiar advantages for mining possessed by the
    Gilman Mines, 127--Seattle Coal and Iron Company,
    127--Seven seams, 128--Details, 128--Good coal,
    128--Another good coal seam, 128--And another, 129--Large
    body of valuable coal, 131--Washington Mines, 132--Raging
    River coals, 132--Details, 134--Snoqualmie Mountain Coal
    Group, 136--Details, 136--Good coking coal, 136--Also good
    coking coal, 138--Large and valuable bed, 138--Another
    good bed, 139--Geological relations, 139--This the bottom
    group, 140.

  _e._ The Yakima and Wenatchie Group                                140

    Yakima or Roslyn coal field, 140--Coal on the Wenatchie,
    141--Coal under the Great Bend country, 142.

  _f._ Bellingham Bay, Skagit River, and other Coal Fields           142

    The first mining on Bellingham Bay, 142--Coal on Skagit
    River, 142--Coal south of Puget Sound, 144--Total
    shipments of coal from Washington Territory, 144.

  _g._ Coal Seams in British Columbia                                145

    Coal on Vancouver's Island, 145.

  II. Iron Ore                                                       146

    The iron ores, 146--The great magnetic ore beds of Cascade
    Mountains, 147--Resembles the Cranberry ore deposits,
    147--Guye Mine on Mount Logan, 148--Denny Mine,
    149--Chair Peak, or Kelly Mine, 149--Middle Fork Mines,
    150--All easily reached from Seattle, Lake Shore and
    Eastern Railway, 150--Cle-ellum ore beds, 150--Burch's ore
    bed, 152--Dudley ore bed, 153--Undoubtedly large beds of
    steel ores, 153--Of superior quality, 153.

  ANALYSES OF SNOQUALMIE IRON ORES                                   154

    Proved by analysis to be unsurpassed, if equaled, 155.

  COMPARATIVE ANALYSES OF STEEL ORES                                 155

    Improved processes, 156.

  III. Granite, Limestone and Marble                                 157

    Granite, 157--Marble and Limestone, 158.

  IV. The Precious and Base Metals                                   159

    Precious metals on Cascade Mountains, 159--On Cle-ellum
    River, 160--Large copper vein in Stevens County,
    161--Precious metals on Methow River, 161--The rich mines
    of Okanogan, 162--The mines in the Colville region,
    164--The Old Dominion Mine, 165--The Daisy Mine,
    165--Young America Company, 166--The Little Dalles,
    166--Coeur d'Alene Mines, 167--The large tonnage from
    and to the mines, 169.

SEATTLE, LAKE SHORE AND EASTERN RAILWAY                              171

  SEATTLE                                                            171

    Commercial and manufacturing advantages, 171--Good
    climate, 171--Good population, 172--High civilization,
    172--Railroad lines, 173--The chief ship-building centre,
    174--Seattle better located than San Francisco, 174.

  AND EASTERN RAILWAY                                                175

    Unrivalled terminal property, 175.

  SUBURBAN INTERESTS                                                 175

    But two entrances by land, 175--Superiority of the
    northern suburbs, 175--Factories of the future, 176--Ship
    canal, 176.

  TIMBER                                                             176

    Superiority of the timber on the Seattle, Lake Shore and
    Eastern Railway, 177--The forests described, 178--Forests
    of Raging River, 178--Forests near Hop Ranch,
    179--Superior to the Long Leaf forests of the Southern
    States and of the Mississippi Bottom, 180--Trees ten feet
    in diameter, 180--Average nearly five feet in diameter and
    250 feet high, 181--Lumber product per acre, 181.

  AGRICULTURAL PRODUCTS                                              183

    Agricultural freights, 183--Produce of Hop Ranch,
    183--Farming, fruit and grazing lands, 185--Hops, barley
    and beer, 186--The two great railroads, 187--The Great
    Bend country, 187--Douglas County, 188--Lincoln County,
    189--Spokane County, 189--Price of farming lands,
    189--Tonnage, 190.

  COAL                                                               191

    The Seattle railway passes five coal fields, 191--Largest
    shipments from the Gilman Mines, 192--Superior mining
    advantages of the Gilman Mines, 193--Mr. Whitworth's
    testimony, 193--Cost of mining coal, 196--Cost at Gilman
    Mines, 197--Prices of coal, 197.

  IRON ORE                                                           199

    Handling the iron ores, 199--Furnace sites, 199--Salal
    Prairie, 200--Charcoal cheaply produced, 200--Quantity of
    charcoal to the ton of iron, 201--Bessemer ores commonly
    distant from fuel, 202--High cost of Lake Superior ores,
    203--Cost of producing ore in Pennsylvania, 203--Cost of
    Bessemer-pig in Snoqualmie Valley, 203--Large market for
    steel rails, 204.

  THE OTHER MINERALS                                                 204

    Limestone, 204--Marble, granite, sandstones, slates,
    204--Precious and base metals, 205--Okanogan, Colville and
    Kootenai, 205--Coeur d'Alene, 206--Transportation lines
    to the mining regions, 206.

CITIES AND TOWNS                                                     209

    The only competition is between Tacoma and Seattle,
    209--Advantages of Seattle, 210--Towns of East Washington,
    210--Spokane Falls and its fine prospects, 211--Mr. Paul
    F. Mohr's article, 211--Sprague, Colfax, and Lewiston,
    215--Notes on the Colfax country, 216--Lewiston,
    217--Walla Walla, 217.

  AND EASTERN RAILWAY                                                218

    Railroad branches, 218--The Palouse country,
    219--Arguments for the Palouse branch, 220--Manitoba
    railroad, 220.


    Rapid growth of Seattle and Spokane Falls, 222--Change in
    the location of the railroad, 222.

  ON SEATTLE, ETC.                                                   223

    Population of Seattle, 224--New manufacturing
    establishments, 224--New steamers, 224--The iron company
    at work, 225--Coking coals, 225--New discoveries of iron
    ore, 227--Lumber business growing, 228--Population and
    freights increasing, 228--Labor strike at Gilman Mine,
    228--Gilman coal seams, 229--Progress of the West Coast
    Railroad, 229--Resources of the country along the new line
    across Cady's Pass, 230--Progress in building the road,
    231--Cable Railway in Seattle, 231--Southern Pacific
    Railroad supposed to be coming to Seattle Harbor, 231.

  FALLS, ETC.                                                        232

    Growth of Spokane Falls, 232--Prodigious development of
    the mining interest, 233.

  CADY'S PASS AND WENATCHIE ROUTE                                    234

  I. ENGINEERING FEATURES                                            234

    Engineering details of the new route, 234.

  II. RESOURCES                                                      236

    Mr. Mohr's account of the resources of the new route, 236

  III. SCENERY                                                       238


  UPPER SNOQUALMIE FALLS.                                  FRONTISPIECE.

  THE DISTANCE.                                         FACING PAGE  44.

  A VIEW OF THE FOREST.                                 FACING PAGE  62.

  INDIANS GATHERING HOPS.                               FACING PAGE  74.

  BRIDGE OVER THE SPOKANE RIVER.                        FACING PAGE  88.

  LOWER SNOQUALMIE FALLS.                               FACING PAGE  92.

  ENTRANCE TO GILMAN COAL MINE.                         FACING PAGE 106.

  COAL-BUNKERS ON SEATTLE HARBOR.                       FACING PAGE 128.

  A TRAIN-LOAD OF LOGS.                                 FACING PAGE 176.



  VIEW OF SEATTLE AND THE HARBOR.                       FACING PAGE 222.


  MAP OF ASIA AND PACIFIC OCEAN.                        FACING PAGE  27.

  MAP OF WILKESON COALFIELD.                            FACING PAGE 109.

  MAP OF THE CITY OF SEATTLE.                           FACING PAGE 170.

  MAP OF SPOKANE FALLS.                                 FACING PAGE 232.




  [Sidenote: Great Plain.]

  [Sidenote: Cascade Mountains.]

  [Sidenote: Hop Ranch.]

I entered Washington Territory, by way of the Northern Pacific Railroad,
on the morning of October 27, 1887, coming first to the valley of the
Spokane River, and spending the entire day in traversing the plains of
Eastern Washington, reaching Pasco Junction a little after nightfall. I
crossed the Cascade Mountains on the Switchback, and arrived at Tacoma
about noon of the 28th, at which point I took a Puget Sound steamer, and
landed at Seattle about four P.M. the same day. The next morning,
accompanied by Mr. F. H. Whitworth, engineer, and Mr. F. M. Guye, I went
out on the Columbia and Puget Sound Railroad to the end of the road,
near Newcastle, where we took horses, and reached Hop Ranch, on the
Snoqualmie River, the same night.

October 30.--Proceeded up the south fork of the Snoqualmie River, and
reached the engineers' camp near the top of Cascade Mountain, at
Snoqualmie Pass. Distances by rail and by wagon road: Seattle to Coal
Creek, near Newcastle, twenty miles; Coal Creek to Squak Valley, five
miles; Squak to Falls City, ten miles; Falls City to Hop Ranch (or
Snoqualmie) six miles; Hop Ranch to Engineers' Camp, twenty-six miles;
Camp to Summit, five miles.

  [Sidenote: Snoqualmie Pass.]

The railroad on which I left Seattle is a narrow-gauge coal road.
Between its terminus and Squak Valley is a high mountain spur. The
proportion of cleared land along this whole line is not large in
comparison with the forests of evergreen timber, but there are many
farms of great fertility, some of them large. The timber increases in
quantity and size nearly to the top of the mountain. On these points I
shall speak fully hereafter. My object in thus hastening to the Cascade
Mountains was to make my observations first at the point where I was
most likely to be interrupted by bad weather. I found the engineers,
headed by Mr. Thompson, busily engaged in making the location of the
railroad, beginning at Snoqualmie Pass (the summit), and working
westward and downward, so as to connect with their finished work in the
neighborhood of Hop Ranch.

  [Sidenote: Guye Mines.]

  [Sidenote: Mt. Logan.]

Spending the night of October 30 at the camp, I went next morning to the
Guye Iron Mines, which were one mile from the line of the railroad. The
outcrops of ore and limestone lie high on a mountain, which I named
Mount Logan, in honor of General T. M. Logan, who seems to have been
among the first of the Eastern men to put faith in the resources of this
remarkable region. I returned in the evening to the engineers' camp.

  [Sidenote: Denny Mine.]

The next day, November 1, I spent visiting the Denny Mine, two miles
from the railroad line, and also high on a mountain, and again returned
to camp. The Chair Peak Mine (also called the Kelley Mine), thirteen
miles distant from the railroad, and Guye's Mine on Middle Fork
Mountain, six miles distant, I did not visit, owing to want of time.

  [Sidenote: Salal Prairie.]

  [Sidenote: Moss Bay Co.]

November 2.--First rain. We returned down the mountain, and stopped for
an hour at Salal Prairie, where we found a large camp occupied by the
employees of the Moss Bay Iron and Steel Company, of England, who
expected to build iron furnaces on this admirable location.[A] This
night we spent at Hop Ranch, a description of which is given hereafter.

    [A] This wealthy company has since determined to establish its works
    on Lake Washington, at Kirkland.

November 3.--Spent the most of this day in examining the coking coal
beds on Snoqualmie Mountain, three miles from Hop Ranch, and reached
Falls City that night, pausing by the way to look upon that wonderful
sight, the Snoqualmie River Falls, 267 feet high.

  [Sidenote: Raging River.]

November 4.--Left the line of the railroad and went up Raging River ten
miles, where I visited the coal openings, and spent the night at the
miners' camp. The Raging River valley and mountain-sides are covered
with large timber.

  [Sidenote: Gilman Mines.]

November 5.--Descended Raging River valley six miles to the line of the
railroad, which we followed to the Gilman Coal Mines, on Squak, passing
a bed of ochreous earth, which might have value for paint, and may lead
to a bed of iron-ore.

At Camp Gilman I looked at all the openings which were accessible, and
observed the preparations making for large mining. Spent the night at
Tibbett's in Squak Valley, two miles distant.

November 6.--Returned to Seattle.

November 7.--In Seattle.

  [Sidenote: Blakeley Mills.]

November 8.--Crossed Puget Sound to the great Blakeley Lumber Mills, and
also examined Mrs. Guye's large collection of the minerals of Washington

November 9.--Made short excursions in and around Seattle, including a
trip on the Seattle, Lake Shore and Eastern Railway, fourteen miles out.

  [Sidenote: Wilkeson Mines.]

November 10.--Went to the Wilkeson Coal Mines, where I found the only
coke ovens I saw in the Territory.

November 11.--Returned to Seattle by way of Tacoma, where I met Mr.
Peter Kirke, the partner and agent of the Moss Bay Company, who is
preparing to erect a steel plant; but whether he intended to build at
Salal Prairie or at Cle-ellum, I could not ascertain. In fact, I am not
sure that he had then determined in his own mind.

November 12.--Excursions around Seattle, especially around the borders
of the lakes.

November 13.--The first Sunday I have been able to observe like a

November 14 and 15.--Collecting information and constructing maps.

November 16.--Out on the line of the S. L. S. & E. Railway eighteen

  [Sidenote: Kirke's Coal Mines.]

November 17.--To Kirke's Coal Mines on Green River. By rail as far as
the Franklin Coal Mines, passing the Renton, Cedar Mountain and Black
Diamond mines. At Franklin Mines, took horses to the Green River Mines,
seven miles, where we spent the night at Mr. Kirke's camp.

November 18.--Last evening and to-day, examined all the openings on Mr.
Kirke's property, and one opening on Section 34, Sugar-Loaf Mountain,
owned by Mr. Whitworth and others; and took the Northern Pacific
Railroad cars at the Common Point, and got back to Seattle the same

November 19.--In Seattle working on maps.

November 20.--Sunday.

November 21.--Remained in Seattle.

November 22.--Went to Portland, Oregon. I will here say that Mr. F. H.
Whitworth accompanied me on all my trips away from Seattle, and
superintended the construction of my large maps, which were made in his
own office. I found him a most obliging gentleman, and exceedingly well
informed about the country. He was untiring also in collecting for me
such information as he did not already possess. Judge Burke, Mr. Leary,
Mr. Mackintosh, Governor Squire, Judge Lewis, Dr. Minor (the Mayor),
etc., were exceedingly attentive, Judge Burke especially so. Other
citizens, such as Chancellor Jones, ex-Governor Ferry, Mr. Arthur A.
Denny (the oldest citizen on Puget Sound), Mr. F. M. Guye, Dr. Cumming,
Mr. Haller, etc., were cordial, and ready to do me any service. Indeed,
the citizens of Seattle, so far as I became acquainted with them, showed
themselves in enthusiastic sympathy with the new railroad enterprise.

  [Sidenote: Portland.]

November 23.--Spent the day in visiting the Oswego Iron Works, six miles
from Portland, in company with Mr. S. G. Reed, president of the Oregon
Iron and Steel Company. The only point of special interest connected
with these unfinished iron-works, is that Mr. Reed is looking forward
impatiently to the progress of the S. L. S. & E. road, expecting to
receive from it magnetic ore for mixture, also limestone and coke.

November 24.--Ascended the Columbia River by steamer, with six miles of
portage, to the Dalles, where I took the Northern Pacific train for
Spokane Falls, having daylight from Pasco Junction.

November 25.--Nothing could be more unjust to the country than the
location of the Northern Pacific Railroad, which runs most of the way to
Spokane Falls in a _coulée_ (or dry river bed), which completely hides
most of the farming land from the traveler.

  [Sidenote: Spokane Falls.]

November 26.--In Spokane Falls, which I found to be a rapidly growing
city of 7,000 to 8,000 people, who are pressing the interests of the
town with amazing energy. Mr. Routhe, president of the Board of Trade;
Mr. Cannon, president of the Bank of Spokane Falls; Mr. Paul F. Mohr,
Mr. Curtis, Mr. Nash, and quite a number of other prominent citizens,
called upon me, and showed the liveliest interest in the Seattle, Lake
Shore and Eastern Railway. I collected here a mass of valuable
information concerning the agricultural and mineral resources of Eastern
Washington; this being an important centre of trade for farmers and

November 27.--Sunday.

November 28, 29 and 30.--Went out on the Spokane Falls and Palouse
Railroad to the Palouse River country. At Garfield I took the train to
Colfax, which I found to be also a flourishing place, and wide awake in
reference to the Seattle road. The citizens here were also ready to do
all in their power to aid the enterprise.

December 1.--Arrived at Walla Walla, another of the great wheat centres,
where I found leading citizens well informed as to the new railroad, but
not indulging much hope of its coming within striking distance, except
in the remote contingency of Snake River Valley being selected as the
route of the Manitoba Railroad.

  [Sidenote: Good weather.]

December 2.--In the afternoon came south fifty miles, to Pendleton, in
Oregon, and on the morning of the 3d started for home by way of the
Oregon Short Line and Union Pacific. By this time the earth was covered
with a light snow; but upon the whole, the weather during my trip was
pleasant--certainly not so much falling weather as I had a right to
expect, and no severe cold.

Thus I was five weeks and two days in Washington Territory. The entire
trip, from the time I left Lexington until my return, was seven weeks
and two days. Miles traveled, 8,500.



  [Sidenote: Denny, of Denny Mines.]

  [Sidenote: Causes of delay in settlement.]

The first white man who ever settled near the site of Seattle (Mr.
Arthur A. Denny) now lives in that city, and can scarcely be called an
old man. The country remained unsettled so long, partly because of its
inaccessibility from the East, and partly because it was disputed
territory between the United States and Great Britain. It became a
separate Territory only in 1853. No transcontinental line of railroad
touched any part of Washington Territory until four years ago, when the
Northern Pacific passed across the eastern part of the Territory, and
united with the road along the Columbia River, which had been built by
the Oregon Railway and Navigation Company, and which had barely entered
this Territory. Following this line to Portland, Oregon, and then
completing the road from Portland, northward, the railroad reached Puget
Sound at Tacoma by this circuitous route in 1883.

The Northern Pacific Railroad has, during the present year (1887),
succeeded in reaching Tacoma by a more direct, though still angular,
line, crossing the Cascade Mountains at Stampede Pass.


Whilst thus comparatively unknown and inaccessible, it is not surprising
that population should at first come in slowly. Those who came to
Western Washington were chiefly lumbermen. Since that time farmers have
settled large tracts of country, commerce has become large, and now
every interest is going forward with great rapidity.

  [Sidenote: Population of Washington Territory.]

The population in 1880 was 67,000. Governor Semple, in his report for
1887, puts the population at 143,669, which shows a gain in seven years
of over 100 per cent. But the Governor himself declares that the
enumerations made since 1880 are unreliable, and it is claimed by
intelligent gentlemen in Seattle that the present population exceeds
175,000. It is increasing rapidly day by day. The fact seems suddenly to
have burst upon the country at large that here, in this neglected
corner, is a wide region offering perhaps the richest inducements to
immigration of any part of the United States.


     (This should be read with a map of Asia and Pacific Ocean.)

In spite of Oriental exclusiveness, now broken down, the Asiatic trade
has always formed a large element in the commerce of the world, and has
long been sought by the great maritime powers of Europe, especially by
England. For this she conquered India, and seized upon many islands of
the ocean. For this she battered in the gates of China, and established
herself permanently at Hong Kong, at the entrance to the River of

  [Sidenote: Majority of the human race in the countries of the Pacific.]

  [Sidenote: Change in the currents of trade.]

In these countries, and upon these islands, live more than half the
human race, and with all the barbarism of some, and the old-fashioned
civilization of even the best, the large majority of these people are
producers of a multitude of articles wanted by the civilized world. And
of late these peoples have become possessed with a strange desire to
avail themselves of the products of European and American art. This
market will not only grow rapidly in its demands, but the currents of
trade will be diverted from Europe to America. In fact, the settlement
of the west coast of America inaugurated a revolution greater than that
which substituted the voyage around the Cape of Good Hope for the camel
train across the Asiatic continent. It gave America a standpoint from
which she would ultimately wrest the bulk of the vast trade of the
Orient from Europe. The cutting of the Suez Canal mended the hold of
England and other maritime European states on the Oriental market, in
fact secured for them the advantage of a shorter line to the Southern
Asiatic market as far as the Malay Peninsula; but as for the rest of
that great market included in the Pacific Islands, the Chinese Empire,
Japan and Siberia, the revolutionary movement has commenced, whereby the
bulk of that trade will be taken from England and Holland by the
merchants of San Francisco and Puget Sound.

  [Sidenote: The China trade.]

The trade of China alone has been estimated at $130,000,000 per annum,
the greater part of which is absorbed by England, and the annual value
of the export and import trade of England with the Pacific Islands has
been put at $75,000,000. This already immense market may and will be
enlarged, especially in China, by means of railroad and steamboat
connections, which will bring to the coast the products of the interior
sections. Much of the China trade now goes overland into and through
India, and also through Siberia, to be consumed by the way, or pushed
through to the termini of European railroads and ship-lines which are
reaching to get it. And, as the transportation becomes better, so will
the production increase. Railroad building, until lately forbidden in
China, has now commenced, and will, in the nature of the case, go on
rapidly. The result will be to bring most of the trade to the Pacific
coast, and thus reverse all the interior movements.

Even the capital of the Empire, the great Peking, and the productive
region around it, have depended largely on the overland trade to Europe,
and especially on the great Russian market opened annually at Novgorod.
It only needs a railroad from the back country, through Peking direct to
the coast, to bring this large trade under American control. Mr. James
G. Swan (Hawaiian Consul) has written a valuable pamphlet on the regions
drained by the Amoor River, in which he shows that there is an immense
trade "now lying dormant in Siberia, Mongolia, Manchooria, Northern
China, Corea and Japan, which will be brought into active life and
diverted to the American shore of the North Pacific Ocean by the great
continental railroads which will have the outlet of their commerce
through the Straits of Fuca."

He gives the population of these countries as follows:

  Siberia         4,000,000
  Mongolia       12,000,000
  Manchooria      5,000,000
  Japan          36,000,000
      Total      57,000,000

  [Sidenote: The trade of the Amoor River, Japan, etc.]

The Amoor River, with its great Chinese tributary, the Songaree,
furnishes over 2,600 miles of steamboat navigation (a second
Mississippi), but, owing to a great bend to the south, the Amoor can be
reached by a short line of railroad from the Russian port Vladivostock,
or Poisette Harbor. Japan lies on the way from Puget Sound to the region
referred to. Major Collins, some years ago, said in a letter to
Secretary Marcy concerning this market: "One item, cotton fabrics, might
be introduced to the amount of millions yearly; then there are many
products of these countries that could be received in exchange. This
must be done through the Amoor and its affluents. It can hardly be
estimated what a revolution in trade and commerce can be effected in
this region; and the fondness of the people for luxuries and foreign
merchandise being very great, if the means of procuring them were
facilitated and the prices cheapened, the consumption would be immense,
and in a few years a trade of many millions would be effected."

Major Collins thought that these people would consume annually five
dollars per head of American goods; Mr. Swan estimates two dollars per
head. These goods would be paid for in silks, tea, rice, furs, skins,
wax, fossil ivory, plumbago, tin, precious stones, naval stores, etc.
It is said that the overland trade of North China to Russia now requires
for its transportation a caravan line of 36,000 camels and bullocks, and
100,000 horses, and that the Siberian trade is as large as that of
China. The tea sold at Novgorod amounts to $5,000,000 each annual fair.
The caravan tea is preferred to the ship tea, which is said to be
injured by the voyage through the tropics; another argument for the
North American route.

  [Sidenote: The new railroad across Siberia to St. Petersburg.]

Since Mr. Swan's pamphlet, the news comes that the Russian Government is
now actively engaged in building a railroad from St. Petersburg across
Siberia to Vladivostock on the Japan Sea; and the expectation is general
that this imperial power will seize Corea so as to bring the terminus of
her railroad to Ninsen at the south point of Corea. All the great trade
which will thus be developed is in addition to the existing trade of
China and the Islands, and will probably swell the China, Japan and
Russian trade to over $200,000,000, to which is to be added the
Australian and Island trade, which already is, no doubt, over

Now comes the practical question, Who are to handle this vast trade of
$300,000,000 annually?

  [Sidenote: The American Pacific States have decisive advantages over
  all others in controlling the Pacific trade.]

No one nation exclusively, of course. The Dutch and other small powers
will have a little of it; but the only contest will be between England
and the American Pacific Coast. England has the lion's share now, but
this great nation will hereafter labor under too many disadvantages in
its contest with America. America has the needful capital, material,
pluck and energy, and enjoys certain decisive advantages, as, for
example--1. In distance, which of itself would in this case decide the
matter; 2. In the local production of certain staple articles which will
be in great demand, and which England cannot supply so cheaply, if at
all, such as lumber, meats, flour, canned goods, cheap cottons, and
agricultural and other machinery, which, if not cheaper, can be more
readily adapted to the wants of the market; 3. In possessing the back
country of Eastern America, whereby the entire United States become
tributary both ways to the Pacific commerce; to which may be added, 4.
The ever-flowing river in the Pacific Ocean, flowing in a circle from
Japan to the American coast and back--the famous Kuro Shiwo, or Japanese
current; a current which gives a gain to every ship of twenty miles a
day in distance; the current which brings the disabled Japanese junks to
the American coast.

  [Sidenote: Advantage in distances.]

The half-way point on the Pacific side between America and England is
the Malay Peninsula. This leaves even Australia and all of Oceanica
nearer to us than to England, and all of China, Japan and Siberia
thousands of miles nearer to us. Hong Kong and Canton are the English
headquarters in China, and yet our Pacific coast is 5,000 miles nearer
to these than England is. It is also 6,500 miles nearer to Shanghai,
which is a more important port than Canton, because of its greater
nearness to the rice and tea producing sections. The advantages are
still greater in respect to Peking, Japan, Vladivostock, the terminus of
the projected Russian railway, and the entire country drained by the
Amoor. Our commerce is now within thirty days of the coast of China, and
will be in less than ten days when the fast mail and express and
passenger steamers are launched. I insert a table of distances, which is
full of significance.


  Puget Sound to mouth of Amoor River               3,900
    "     "   "  Vladivostock                       4,700
    "     "   "  Shanghai                           5,750
    "     "   "  Canton                             6,500
    "     "   "  Singapore                          8,100
    "     "   "  S. W. point of Australia           9,550
  San Francisco to Vladivostock                     5,200
   "     "      "  Shanghai                         6,100
   "     "      "  Canton                           6,800
   "     "      "  Singapore                        8,400
   "     "      "  S. W. point of Australia         9,500
   "     "      "  St. Petersburg via Vladivostock  9,700
  St. Petersburg to Vladivostock                    4,500
  San Francisco to Calcutta                        10,200
  Liverpool to mouth of Amoor River                13,550
    "       "  Vladivostock                        12,700
    "       "  Shanghai                            11,750
    "       "  Canton                              10,900
    "       "  S. W. point of Australia            10,750
    "       "  Singapore                            9,300
    "       "  Calcutta                             8,700

Liverpool and Puget Sound are about equally distant from west coast of
the Malay Peninsula.

  New York to Canton, via Puget Sound               9,500
     "     "  Shanghai "    "     "        7,800 to 8,000

By this it will be seen that New York, by way of Puget Sound, is 1,400
miles nearer to Canton than Liverpool is, and nearly 4,000 miles nearer
to Shanghai. Mr. Swan makes the distance from the Pacific coast less
than I have given. It should also be noted that Puget Sound has the
advantage of distance over San Francisco also.

  [Sidenote: Advantage in productions.]

Puget Sound has also the advantage over all competitors of being able
to produce a large bulk of the materials for commerce in its own
vicinity. In this report there will be a large array of facts concerning
the present and future productions of Washington Territory, which will
amply confirm and illustrate the above statement. The only real
competitor of Puget Sound on the American coast is British Columbia, but
British Columbia cannot vie with Washington Territory in the production
of the materials of commerce, and Canada at large furnishes no such
background as the United States.

  [Sidenote: Coastwise trade.]

It will, of course, not be overlooked, that in the great coastwise trade
which the Pacific States have and must always have with each other, they
will minister to each other's prosperity. And here it will be shown that
Puget Sound will have the advantage in supplying the wants of others.

  [Sidenote: South American trade.]

In addition to these is the foreign trade along the coast of British
Columbia, Mexico, Central America, and all the Pacific States of South
America. Chili is a prosperous State. She has nearly doubled the volume
of her trade in ten years. From 1874 to 1883 her exports went up from
$32,000,000 to $73,000,000, and her imports from $35,000,000 to
$50,000,000. The United States imports over $4,000,000 of goods from
the Pacific side of South America, and exports about $8,000,000 to these
states. England, however, gets the most of the West South American
trade, so that here again we must enter the lists with Britannia.
Already the contest has begun, and our Pacific States must bear off the
palm sooner or later.

  [Sidenote: Large existing trade.]

Thus it is evident that a vast field of commercial enterprise is wide
open to the people of Washington Territory as well as to Oregon and
California. And our commercial statistics show what handsome progress
has already been made. Taking both exports and imports, there is already
a business of $80,000,000 done by the seven Pacific ports of entry. San
Francisco is now far ahead of the others, and this city has nothing to
fear from any other port except Puget Sound, which will gain upon her
rapidly and ultimately surpass her. Washington Territory has all that
California has on which to trade, and a great deal besides; and has the
advantage of position. When our commercial statistics were made up,
Puget Sound had no direct railroad communication with her own back
country east, much less a transcontinental line. A very different story
will be told a few years hence. I here insert a table of summaries
which show that the commercial revolution is now in operation.

                     |     TOTAL VALUE OF      |     TOTAL VALUE OF
                     |   EXPORTS OF DOMESTIC   |       IMPORTS OF
         PORTS       |       MERCHANDISE       |       MERCHANDISE
                     |  JUNE 30,  |  JUNE 30,  |  JUNE 30,  |  JUNE 30,
                     |   1885.    |   1887.    |   1885.    |   1887.
  Humboldt, Cal.     | $  201,500 |            | $    1,731 |
  Oregon             |  1,928,829 |            |    161,170 |
  Puget Sound, W. T. |  1,877,485 |            |    238,036 |
  San Diego, Cal.    |     65,654 |            |     71,106 |
  San Francisco, Cal.| 37,082,520 |$32,027,995 | 35,040,350 |$40,707,708
  Willamette, Oregon |  4,142,156 |            |    277,386 |
  Wilmington, Cal.   |    252,673 |            |    187,348 |
                     |$45,550,817 |            |$35,977,127 |

In the latest report to which I have access, San Francisco is the only
one of the Pacific ports mentioned separately.

Much of the exports above reported to the credit of Oregon really came
down the Columbia River from the eastern part of Washington Territory;
and the great bulk of the exports from San Francisco consists of wheat,
flour, and other breadstuffs, an item in which Washington Territory can
surpass all competitors. The following table shows the principal items
of export from the Pacific ports.

Let it be noted that in respect to the production of the larger items,
to wit, wheat and flour, wood and its manufactures, animals, iron and
steel and their manufactures, machinery of all sorts, fish, etc.,
Washington Territory can surpass all competitors.


       PACIFIC.      |   VALUES.  |
  Humboldt, Cal.     | $  165,000 | Wood, and Manufactures of.
                     |            |
                     |{ 1,493,600 | Canned Salmon.
  Oregon, Oregon     |{   400,000 | Wheat and Flour.
                     |{    32,000 | Wood, and Manufactures of.
                     |            |
                     |{   830,000 | Wood, and Manufactures of.
  Puget Sound, W. T. |{   240,000 | Wheat and Flour.
                     |{   160,000 | Animals.
                     |            |
                     |{    58,000 | Animals.
  San Diego, Cal.    |{     4,000 | Wood, and Manufactures of.
                     |{     1,800 | Machinery.
                     |            |
                     |{27,226,000 | Wheat, Flour, and other Breadstuffs.
                     |{ 1,211,000 | Manufactures of Iron and Steel.
                     |{   900,000 | Fish.
                     |{   745,000 | Ginseng.
  San Francisco, Cal.|{   700,000 | Cotton Manufactures.
                     |{   650,000 | Wood, and Manufactures of.
                     |{   430,000 | Fruit.
                     |{   375,000 | Gunpowder, etc.
                     |{   358,000 | Medicines, etc.
                     |            |
                     |{ 3,339,153 | Wheat.
  Willamette, Oregon |{   704,000 | Flour and Breadstuffs.
                     |{    37,000 | Wood, and Manufactures of.
                     |            |
  Wilmington, Cal.   |{   211,928 | Wheat.
                     |{    33,600 | Honey.

NOTE.--Humboldt, Oregon, San Diego, Willamette, and Wilmington have
almost no exports except those included in this list. Puget Sound and
San Francisco have a great variety of exports.



  Agricultural Implements.
  Art Works.
  Bark, and Extract for Tanning.
  Billiard Tables, etc.
  Bones, Hoofs, Horns, etc.
  Books, Maps, etc.
  Brass, and Manufactures of.
  Breadstuffs, Wheat, etc.
  Broom-corn, Brooms and Brushes.
  Carriages, and parts of.
  Cars, passenger and freight.
  Casings for Sausages.
  Chemicals, Drugs, Dyes, and Medicines.
  Clocks and Watches.
  Coffee and Cocoa, ground or prepared, and Chocolate.
  Copper, and Manufactures of.
  Cotton, Manufactures of.
  Earthen, Stone, and China Ware.
  Fancy Articles.
  Flax, Hemp, Jute, and Manufactures of.
  Furs and Fur-skins.
  Glass and Glassware.
  Glucose, or Grape-Sugar.
  Grease, and all Soap Stock.
  Gunpowder, and other Explosives.
  Hair, and Manufactures of.
  Hides, and Skins other than Furs.
  India-rubber and Gutta-percha, and Manufactures of.
  Instruments and Apparatus for Scientific purposes.
  Iron and Steel, and Manufactures of.
  Jewelry, and Manufactures of Gold and Silver.
  Lamps, etc.
  Lead, and Manufactures of.
  Leather, and Manufactures of.
  Lime and Cement.
  Malt Liquors.
  Marble and Stone, and Manufactures of.
  Musical Instruments.
  Naval Stores.
  Oil-cake and Oil-cake Meal.
  Ore, Gold and Silver bearing.
  Paraffine and Paraffine Wax.
  Paints and Painters' Colors.
  Paper, and Manufactures of.
  Plated Ware.
  Provisions (comprising Meat and Dairy Products).
  Seeds--Timothy, etc.
  Silk, and Manufactures of.
  Spermaceti and Spermaceti Wax.
  Spices, ground and prepared.
  Spirits, Whisky, etc.
  Spirits of Turpentine.
  Stationery, except Paper.
  Stereotype and Electrotype Plates.
  Straw and Palm-leaf, and Manufactures of.
  Sugar and Molasses.
  Tin, Manufactures of.
  Tobacco, and Manufactures of.
  Trunks, Valises, etc.
  Umbrellas, etc.
  Vessels sold to foreigners.
  Wax (Bees').
  Wood, and Manufactures of.
  Zinc (pigs, bars, plates, and sheets).


  Articles, the growth, produce or manufacture of the United States,
  Art Works.
  Art Works, the production of American artists.
  Books, etc.
  Brass, and Manufactures of.
  Buttons, some kinds of.
  Chemicals, Drugs and Dyes.
  Clays, etc.
  Clocks, and parts of.
  Coal, bituminous.
  Cocoa, Coffee.
  Copper, and Manufactures of.
  Cotton, Manufactures of.
  Cotton, unmanufactured.
  Dairy Products.
  Diamonds, uncut.
  Earthen, Stone, and China Ware.
  Fancy Articles.
  Farinaceous Substances, and preparations of.
  Fish, a few.
  Flax, Hemp, Jute, etc., and Manufactures of.
  Fruits and Nuts, some.
  Furs and Fur-skins, undressed.
  Furs, dressed, and Manufactures of.
  Glass and Glassware.
  Household and Personal Effects, Clothing, Tools, etc., of persons
    arriving from foreign countries.
  Hair, Hats and Bonnets, etc.
  India-rubber and Gutta-percha.
  Iron, Steel, and Manufactures of.
  Jewelry, Manufactures of Gold, Silver, and Precious Stones.
  Lead, and Manufactures of.
  Leather, and Manufactures of.
  Malt Liquors.
  Marble and Stone, Manufactures of.
  Meats, prepared, of all kinds, and Extracts, etc.
  Metals, some.
  Musical Instruments, and parts of.
  Oil, animal and vegetable.
  Opium, and other Medicines.
  Paints and Colors.
  Paper, and Manufactures of.
  Paper Stock, crude.
  Plaster-of-Paris, unground.
  Silk, Manufactures of.
  Silk, unmanufactured.
  Some Breadstuffs.
  Spices, ground.
  Spices, unground.
  Spirits, Distilled and Spirituous.
  Sugar and Molasses.
  Tin (bars, blocks, etc.).
  Tobacco, and Manufactures of.
  Vegetables, some, in natural state, in brine, preserved, etc.
  Wood, and Manufactures of.
  Wood, unmanufactured.
  Wools, Hair of the Alpaca goat, etc., and Manufactures of.
  Zinc, Spelter or Tutenegue, and Manufactures of.


  The World                     1,500,000,000
  Japan, Siberia, Chinese Empire, Anam, Siam,
      Oceanica, India                          792,500,000
  Mexico, Central America                       11,800,000
  U. S. of Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia,
      Chili, Patagonia                          11,700,000
  Canada                                         4,500,000
                              TOTAL            820,000,000


Washington Territory will make one of the largest States of the Union.
It is larger than England and Wales combined, as will be seen by the
following table:

  Washington Territory   66,880 square miles.
  New York               47,620   "      "
  Virginia               40,125   "      "
  England and Wales      58,320   "      "

The shape of the Territory is regular, having the general form of a
parallelogram, with its longer axis running east and west. Its relief is
simple. Along the Pacific coast runs the Coast Range of mountains from
the mouth of the Columbia River to the Straits of Juan de Fuca. In this
range there is only one practicable opening from the interior, which is
the trough of the Chehalis River, which terminates in Gray's Harbor. The
bar here, as at the mouth of Columbia River, forms a serious obstruction
to the entrance of vessels drawing more than twenty feet of water.

Sixty miles east of the Coast Range, and parallel to it, runs the
Cascade Range, which divides the Territory by a north and south line. It
is a lofty range, presenting a serrated outline, whose lower depressions
are 3,000 to 4,000 feet above tide, while summits of 5,000 to 8,000
feet are common; and at intervals still higher peaks raise their
snow-covered heads from 8,000 to 14,500 feet.

Between the Cascade Mountains and the Coast Range lies Puget Sound, with
its outlet through the Strait of Fuca. South of this sound, and on each
side, are wide spaces of flat and rolling country, with numerous and
somewhat disconnected mountains of comparatively small size, though some
of them rise as high as 1,500 feet. These mountains show many natural
terraces, which may be the result of land-slides.

  [Sidenote: Puget Sound.]


  [Sidenote: Lake Washington.]

The Puget Sound basin is exceedingly well supplied with streams and
lakes; whilst the Sound itself, with its sheltered position, its deep
water, and indented shore-line, is one of the most interesting and
valuable inland bodies of water in the world. It has a broad outlet to
the ocean. Lake Washington is a beautiful and navigable sheet of water.
There are numerous other lakes scattered over the Territory, enlivening
its scenery and often affording convenient waterways. Quite a number of
the rivers emptying into Puget Sound are partially navigable for small
steamers. The rivers and creeks generally have bottom-lands, which are
sometimes narrow, and sometimes wide. Cowlitz River flows south into
the Columbia River. It has fine bottom-lands, and its valley may be
regarded as a prolongation and complement of the Willamette Valley,

  [Sidenote: West Washington and East Washington.]

All the country lying west of the crest-line of the Cascade Mountains is
known as West Washington, and is quite different in topography, as in
many other respects, from the country known as East Washington, which
name applies to all of the Territory lying east of the Cascade axis.

East Washington is a rectangular plateau, set in a frame of mountains,
and drained by the Columbia River and its tributaries. The Cascade Range
being the west side of the frame, the north side is formed by irregular
spurs which run out at right angles from the Cascade Mountains along the
Canada border, and connect with the Cabinet Mountains. The east side of
the frame is in Idaho, and consists chiefly of the Coeur d'Alene
Mountains. On the south lie the Blue Mountains, which are partly in
Washington Territory, but chiefly in Oregon. The mountains on the north
have a few peaks 5,000 to 9,000 feet high, and many of the dividing
ridges are high, steep and rugged. Much of the region is described,
however, as high plateau country, dotted over with small, conical
mountains. It abounds in streams of water, generally small. A strip of
arable land runs on the east side of the Columbia River from the mouth
of the Spokane River to the mouth of the Colville River and the valleys
of Colville and the Little Spokane River are highly spoken of as
agricultural regions. The elevation of these river valleys is from 1,200
to 1,600 feet above tide-water.

  [Sidenote: Coeur d'Alene Mountains.]

Passing to the east side, we find the plateau country at its north
corner extending to the Idaho line where the foot-hills of the Rocky
Mountains begin, and soon rise into the Coeur d'Alene Mountains,
which--being the local name for part of the Bitter Root Range--is a part
of the western branch of the Rocky Mountains. The Coeur d'Alene River
and Lake belong to the Columbia River basin, and are so naturally
connected in mining and trading interests with Washington Territory,
that in another connection I shall have much to say of the Coeur
d'Alene country, as also of the Colville country, and other parts of the
mountain rim. South of the Coeur d'Alene Lake the plateau country
extends far into Idaho, and gives to that State its best farming lands.

The Blue Mountains which mark the southern limit of the plateau in
Washington Territory do not extend more than half-way across the plain,
leaving a long projection of the plateau to extend southward into

  [Sidenote: The Great Plateau.]

  [Sidenote: Coulées.]

The shape of the plateau in Washington Territory is an irregular square
with a diameter each way of about 150 miles. Followed into Idaho and
Oregon, the diameters would reach 200 miles. Its surface is generally
smooth, but there are frequent patches of rock, and sometimes large
areas are roughened by rocky outcrops. The plateau is elevated and
rolling, rising from 1,000 to 3,000 feet above the surface of Columbia
River. Its elevations usually are mere swells, except along the
precipitous edges of coulées. I know of only one mountain upon it, and
that is quite a small one; but it served as a refuge for Lieutenant
Steptoe and his handful of soldiers when attacked by the Indians; and
hence is called Steptoe Butte. The surface of the plain is scarred in a
number of places with coulées, or dry river-beds, which are cut down
twenty to one hundred feet, and sometimes more, and their sides are
usually marked by bluffs, often of rock. These coulées are an advantage,
or a disadvantage, in road-making, according to whether the road goes
with, or across, the coulée. The Northern Pacific Railroad found it
convenient to use one of them for a long distance. The deepest cuts in
the plateau are made by its rivers. Of these the Columbia is chief. This
river, as already intimated, has cut a channel for itself along the
north and west edge of the plain from 1,000 to 2,000 feet below the
general level. The Snake River, which is the largest affluent of the
Columbia, has numerous branches, all cut deep into the basalt which
underlies the plain.

  [Sidenote: Columbia and Snake Rivers.]

The Columbia and Snake are both steamboat rivers, but navigation is
interrupted by rocky rapids, which prevent through lines of steamers.
The Columbia is one of the largest rivers in the world, and has abundant
water for steamboats from its mouth to a point in Canada, north of
Farwell, where it is crossed by the Canadian Pacific Railway, and
steamboats run at intervals to the most northerly point; and there are
navigable stretches not yet used for boats which will have steamers in
connection with future railroads. The steamers on Snake River are very
useful, and run to Lewiston, in Idaho, and perhaps further.

This plateau, or Great Plain of the Columbia, as it is called sometimes,
is a most interesting and important region, concerning which I shall
have much to say under subsequent heads.


  Mount Ranier (Tacoma)                   14,444
  Mount Baker                             10,827
  Mount Adams                              9,570
  Mount St. Helens                         9,750
  Natchess Pass                            4,900
  Stampede Pass, Summit                    3,980
  Tunnel, Stampede Pass                    2,885
  Snoqualmie Pass                          3,110
  Kechelus Lake                            2,388
  Kachess Lake                             2,158
  Ellensburg                               1,518
  Yakima City                                990
  Ainsworth                                  351
  Palouse Junction                           858
  Sprague                                  1,200
  Spokane Falls                            1,910
  Colville                                 1,917
  Fort Spokane                             1,300
  Okinagane Lake                           1,163
  Great Plain of Columbia River   1,000 to 3,000
  Snake River, N. P. R. R.                   358
  Colfax                                   1,941
  Dayton                                   1,360
  Walla Walla                              1,000
  Wallula Junction                           326


  [Sidenote: The Climate of Washington Territory.]

Climate is a matter of temperature, moisture and atmospheric dynamics.
The general law of temperature is that the farther north the colder the
weather; and yet currents of water and prevailing winds may give to the
country a climate geographically belonging to quite a different
latitude. We know how this is with England, which, judged by latitude,
ought to be colder than Maine, but which, in fact, has one of the
mildest and most equable climates in the world. England is farther north
than Washington Territory, which latter is in the latitude of France;
but it is also in the latitude of Montana, Dakota and Maine, States
remarkable for sudden changes and for terrible cold. But it is well
known that our Pacific States, at least on their western borders, have a
temperature free from extremes in both summer and winter. Taking July
and January as the hottest and coldest months, it will be found that the
average temperature at San Francisco and Puget Sound is from 7° to 14°
cooler than it is in the Rocky Mountains and in New England during the
same months. And on the other hand, taking January as the coldest month,
we find that Bismarck, Denver, New England, etc., are 30° to 40° colder
than the points on the Pacific. In other words, that the range of the
thermometer between extremes averages near 50° more in the East than it
does in the West in the localities named; a very great difference when
we consider comfort, health, cost of living, and opportunity to labor
in the open air.

  [Sidenote: Mild and equable.]

This greater mildness and equability of temperature on the Pacific Coast
is to be ascribed to the winds and currents of the great ocean. During
the summer the winds come from the northwest, and during the winter from
the southwest and south. Much influence in tempering the cold of winter
is ascribed also to the Japan Current, mentioned under a former head. It
does for the Pacific Coast what the Gulf Stream does for England.

The same causes regulate also the rainfall on the Pacific Coast. In one
respect there is the same peculiarity along the whole coast, namely, dry
summers and, comparatively, wet winters. There is, however, a gradual
increase in the amount of rainfall northward from San Diego to Sitka; so
that when we reach Washington Territory we do not find the excessive
dryness which characterizes the summer climate of California.

  [Sidenote: Rainfall.]

The figures of different authorities do not agree exactly as to the
precipitation on the Pacific Coast: for example, in the older volume on
Rain Tables, published by the Smithsonian Institution, the annual
rainfall and melted snow on Puget Sound, measured at Steilacoom, near
Olympia, from 1849 to 1867, amounted to 43.98 inches. Governor Semple,
however, gives from Sergeant McGovern, in charge of the station, a total
of 53.89 inches annually, measured at Olympia from 1878 to 1886. But I
find in the report of the chief signal officer to the War Department for
1884, that the average from July 1, 1877, to December, 1883, for
Olympia, was 62.81 inches. This difference of nine inches is partly
accounted for by the fact that the precipitation in the subsequent years
not included in the report of the Signal Service Bureau, namely, 1884,
1885 and 1886, averaged only 41.88 inches, which would, in great
measure, relieve the discrepancy. It will probably turn out on further
observation that 53 inches is about the total annual rainfall for Puget
Sound. But according to the report of the chief signal officer for 1884,
we have the following annual totals: San Diego, 9.40; San Francisco,
23.32; Portland, Oregon, 54.16; Puget Sound, 62.81; Sitka, Alaska, 97.28

Comparing these with points farther east, we have Bismarck, Dakota,
21.35; Denver, 14.97; Sandusky, Ohio, 41.43; New Haven, Connecticut,
51.55; Norfolk, Virginia, 52.14 inches.

The value of rainfall depends more on its distribution among the months
than on its annual aggregate. England has but 25 inches rain per annum,
but it comes at such times as makes it most effective. The rains on the
Pacific Coast are not distributed in the most favorable way for
agriculture--the summers being too dry. At San Diego there is less than
one-third of an inch in the three summer months, and still less at San
Francisco. On Puget Sound, for that time, the fall is 2.57. In
Washington Territory the spring rains are as abundant as in the Atlantic
States, and the summer breezes seem laden with moisture.

  [Sidenote: No blizzards or cyclones.]

  [Sidenote: Differences between East and West Washington.]

In respect to cold waves, winds and storms, Washington Territory is
singularly favored. There is nothing to correspond with the blizzards,
northers, hurricanes and cyclones which trouble some other States. Even
ordinary thunder-storms are rare. The climate of East Washington is
different from that of West Washington, and yet, when compared with that
of Montana and Dakota, it will be seen that it is really transitional
and intermediate between the climates on each side. The range of
thermometer from the heat of July to the cold of January is, at
Bismarck, 65°; at Spokane Falls, 45°, and on Puget Sound, 22°. And, in
like manner, the amount of rain is intermediate between the heavy
rainfall of the Sound and the lighter rains of the Rocky Mountain
country. The explanation of this is, that while the Cascade Range, like
all high mountains, condenses the moisture of the air on the windward
side and changes its temperature, yet this range is not sufficiently
high and cold to have the effect of the Himalayas or the Andes in
depriving the leeward lands of rain.

The mountain rim of the plateau country has not the moisture which
distinguishes the west side of the Cascade, and it varies in its amount
at different places.

Some statements have already been made in reference to the dryness and
summer heat of the Yakima Valley on the east flank of the main mountain.
The mountains running along the Canada line have probably a better
summer climate than the east side of the main mountain. I do not know
how it is with the Coeur d'Alene and Blue Mountains, but the climate
of the plateau has no unusual character in the matter of temperature.
Half of the States of the Union have as great or greater extremes; but
the plateau has less than half the precipitation of Puget Sound, as
shown in the tables given on pages 56 and 57. And the rainfall in the
summer is so scant that one would not, _a priori_, expect any form of
vegetation to progress at all. These meteorological phenomena render
almost unaccountable the facts of agriculture, which will be given

  [Sidenote: Chinook wind.]

The Chinook wind, which springs up in winter and melts the snow on the
plateau, and to some extent in the mountains, is simply a southerly
wind, such as is common in the Mississippi Valley and even on the
Atlantic seaboard. In the Pacific States it does not, from the
descriptions, appear to differ from the breezes of the coast, except in
its greater strength and steadiness. I heard an intelligent gentleman,
residing in Spokane Falls, say that he thought the Chinook was a
disadvantage in winter, as it caused a disagreeable thaw, and so relaxed
the human system as to render it more sensitive to cold; but generally
the Chinook is enjoyed in East Washington.


  [Sidenote: Soils all fertile.]

The arable soils of Washington Territory, so far as I could see, or
otherwise learn, may be classified as follows, to wit: _a._ Humus; _b._
Alluvium; _c._ Drift; _d._ Loam; _e._ Basalt.

_a._ HUMUS. In West Washington the whole country is top-dressed with
vegetable mould, derived obviously from the heavy growth which has
covered the surface for ages. Of course there are bare spots, and where
the growth has been light, the top-dressing is thin; but the mountain
sides, the hills, and notably the low grounds, are overlaid from one to
ten inches, and often much more, with this vegetable mould.


The Means are obtained by dividing the sum of the daily readings of the
Maximum and Minimum Self-registering Thermometers by the number of days
in the month.

                      |                  1883                   |
                      |    July.    |    Aug.     |    Sept.    |
       STATIONS.      +-------------+-------------+-------------+
                      |    Mean.    |    Mean.    |    Mean.    |
                      | Max. | Min. | Max. | Min. | Max. | Min. |
  Bismarck, Dak.      | 79.5 | 55.8 | 78.6 | 54.8 | 69.4 | 43.7 |
  Dayton, W. T.       | 87.3 | 53.6 | 85.1 | 53.2 | 77.5 | 45.2 |
  Denver, Col.        | 82.6 | 58.7 | 83.6 | 58.8 | 74.7 | 50.2 |
  Lewiston, Idaho     | 90.0 | 59.1 | 87.1 | 57.6 | 76.0 | 47.7 |
  New Haven, Conn.    | 80.3 | 62.4 | 77.6 | 57.9 | 70.4 | 50.6 |
  Norfolk, Virginia.  | 87.9 | 71.1 | 82.4 | 68.9 | 76.4 | 63.8 |
  Olympia, W. T.      | 76.1 | 48.2 | 71.3 | 55.1 | 67.0 | 48.1 |
  Portland, Oregon.   | 80.0 | 57.0 | 73.8 | 54.2 | 72.3 | 52.6 |
  San Diego, Cal.     | 75.5 | 64.0 | 75.9 | 63.5 | 78.2 | 62.9 |
  Sandusky, Ohio      |  --  |  --  | 77.1 | 62.8 | 69.2 | 55.8 |
  San Francisco, Cal. | 64.5 | 55.0 | 64.4 | 53.9 | 69.9 | 56.3 |
  Sitka, Alaska       | 57.9 | 48.1 | 59.3 | 48.8 | 58.9 | 48.5 |
  Spokane Falls, W. T.| 85.0 | 53.4 | 83.2 | 72.5 | 72.4 | 44.2 |
  Washington City.    | 87.7 | 67.2 | 82.4 | 62.7 | 74.8 | 56.2 |

                      |                  1883                   |
                      |    Oct.     |    Nov.     |    Dec.     |
       STATIONS.      +-------------+-------------+-------------+
                      |    Mean.    |    Mean.    |    Mean.    |
                      | Max. | Min. | Max. | Min. | Max. | Min. |
  Bismarck, Dak.      | 48.3 | 33.4 | 38.7 | 15.0 | 25.0 |  4.5 |
  Dayton, W. T.       | 57.8 | 34.7 | 51.6 | 33.3 | 35.8 | 18.5 |
  Denver, Col.        | 57.6 | 36.8 | 56.1 | 31.1 | 36.8 | 17.4 |
  Lewiston, Idaho     | 57.9 | 39.5 | 57.6 | 35.5 | 41.7 | 29.3 |
  New Haven, Conn.    | 58.4 | 40.4 | 50.5 | 34.1 | 38.3 | 21.5 |
  Norfolk, Virginia.  | 68.4 | 56.7 | 62.2 | 45.0 | 53.9 | 38.8 |
  Olympia, W. T.      | 57.3 | 42.9 | 50.2 | 44.9 | 45.9 | 35.4 |
  Portland, Oregon.   | 58.4 | 45.8 | 52.8 | 72.0 | 49.0 | 36.8 |
  San Diego, Cal.     | 69.0 | 54.7 | 67.7 | 50.2 | 65.7 | 49.0 |
  Sandusky, Ohio      | 59.2 | 47.3 | 52.5 | 37.2 | 39.8 | 27.5 |
  San Francisco, Cal. | 62.9 | 52.9 | 58.8 | 49.4 | 55.5 | 46.2 |
  Sitka, Alaska       | 50.6 | 41.0 | 38.6 | 27.3 | 41.6 | 30.5 |
  Spokane Falls, W. T.| 53.7 | 35.0 | 46.6 | 32.0 | 35.6 | 22.4 |
  Washington City.    | 65.5 | 49.3 | 56.2 | 39.4 | 63.1 | 45.3 |

                      |                  1884                   |
                      |    Jan.     |    Feb.     |    March.   |
       STATIONS.      +-------------+-------------+-------------+
                      |    Mean.    |    Mean.    |    Mean.    |
                      | Max. | Min. | Max. | Min. | Max. | Min. |
  Bismarck, Dak.      | 14.5 |  7.6 |  8.9 |  9.8 | 29.9 | 10.5 |
  Dayton, W. T.       | 31.0 | 11.5 | 24.9 |  4.8 | 35.6 | 19.6 |
  Denver, Col.        | 25.7 |  5.3 | 30.8 | 10.8 | 43.0 | 25.7 |
  Lewiston, Idaho     | 39.1 | 25.9 | 35.1 | 18.8 | 53.6 | 34.7 |
  New Haven, Conn.    | 32.6 | 15.8 | 40.8 | 24.3 | 42.4 | 26.6 |
  Norfolk, Virginia.  | 46.7 | 29.9 | 59.0 | 41.0 | 58.1 | 42.1 |
  Olympia, W. T.      | 44.7 | 35.2 | 42.1 | 27.5 | 52.5 | 34.4 |
  Portland, Oregon.   | 46.2 | 33.3 | 44.4 | 29.4 | 55.6 | 37.8 |
  San Diego, Cal.     | 64.5 | 45.6 | 62.9 | 48.6 | 62.9 | 50.4 |
  Sandusky, Ohio      | 26.9 | 12.9 | 39.0 | 24.4 | 41.6 | 28.7 |
  San Francisco, Cal. | 54.7 | 46.6 | 55.9 | 45.6 | 59.2 | 49.8 |
  Sitka, Alaska       | 43.8 | 34.2 | 37.8 | 25.8 | 42.5 | 33.3 |
  Spokane Falls, W. T.| 32.6 | 17.5 | 30.2 | 12.7 | 46.4 | 27.8 |
  Washington City.    | 49.7 | 31.8 | 65.6 | 47.0 | 67.8 | 51.6 |

                      |                  1884                   |
                      |    April.   |    May.     |    June.    |
       STATIONS.      +-------------+-------------+-------------+
                      |    Mean.    |    Mean.    |    Mean.    |
                      | Max. | Min. | Max. | Min. | Max. | Min. |
  Bismarck, Dak.      | 47.6 | 30.2 | 67.1 | 44.1 | 81.2 | 54.8 |
  Dayton, W. T.       | 43.9 | 29.6 | 59.5 | 40.7 | 73.7 | 51.8 |
  Denver, Col.        | 58.2 | 39.6 | 71.5 | 50.2 | 81.2 | 61.3 |
  Lewiston, Idaho     | 66.6 | 42.1 | 79.3 | 48.9 | 80.8 | 57.3 |
  New Haven, Conn.    | 54.1 | 37.2 | 65.8 | 47.2 | 78.2 | 55.4 |
  Norfolk, Virginia.  | 61.9 | 47.0 | 76.9 | 58.8 | 81.8 | 64.6 |
  Olympia, W. T.      | 61.7 | 41.6 | 70.1 | 43.9 | 71.5 | 48.9 |
  Portland, Oregon.   | 65.1 | 45.3 | 73.6 | 48.7 | 74.9 | 53.7 |
  San Diego, Cal.     | 64.4 | 51.1 | 67.5 | 56.1 | 72.1 | 58.4 |
  Sandusky, Ohio      | 52.1 | 39.3 | 68.8 | 51.3 | 77.9 | 62.7 |
  San Francisco, Cal. | 61.2 | 50.7 | 65.3 | 53.4 | 65.2 | 55.3 |
  Sitka, Alaska       | 51.7 | 37.7 | 51.9 | 40.8 | 57.9 | 46.4 |
  Spokane Falls, W. T.| 62.2 | 39.0 | 74.5 | 46.0 | 78.7 | 53.9 |
  Washington City.    | 73.6 | 54.8 | 81.4 | 63.0 | 87.4 | 68.5 |



FOR 1884.

           STATIONS.        |  ESTABLISHED.  | Jan. | Feb. |March.|
                            |                |      |      |      |
  Bismarck, Dak.            | Sept. 15, 1874 | 0.57 | 0.66 | 1.21 |
  Dayton, Wash. Terr.       | July 1, 1879   | 4.11 | 3.64 | 2.04 |
  Denver, Colorado          | Nov. 19, 1871  | 0.69 | 0.43 | 0.86 |
  Lewiston, Idaho           | July 1, 1879   | 2.45 | 1.53 | 1.16 |
  New Haven, Conn.          | Dec. 10, 1872  | 4.20 | 4.22 | 5.29 |
  Norfolk, Virginia         | Jan. 1, 1871   | 3.89 | 3.85 | 4.35 |
  Olympia, Wash. Terr.      | July 1, 1877   | 9.36 |10.67 | 6.20 |
  Portland, Oregon          | Nov. 1, 1871   | 7.34 | 8.11 | 7.27 |
  San Diego, Cal.           | Nov. 1, 1871   | 1.85 | 2.07 | 0.97 |
  Sandusky, Ohio            | Aug. 2, 1877   | 2.19 | 3.13 | 2.90 |
  San Francisco, Cal.       | March 8, 1871  | 5.10 | 3.95 | 2.88 |
  Sitka, Alaska             | March 30, 1881 | 9.44 |11.64 | 9.76 |
  Spokane Falls, Wash. Terr.| Feb. 5, 1881   | 3.34 | 3.02 | 0.85 |
  Washington City           | Nov. 1, 1870   | 3.16 | 2.85 | 4.04 |

           STATIONS.        |April.| May. | June.| July.| Aug. |
                            |      |      |      |      |      |
  Bismarck, Dak.            | 2.94 | 3.31 | 3.64 | 2.21 | 2.71 |
  Dayton, Wash. Terr.       | 3.26 | 2.02 | 0.86 | 0.79 | 0.49 |
  Denver, Colorado          | 1.71 | 3.05 | 1.60 | 1.89 | 1.54 |
  Lewiston, Idaho           | 1.28 | 1.12 | 0.94 | 0.76 | 0.36 |
  New Haven, Conn.          | 4.32 | 3.71 | 3.80 | 4.86 | 5.62 |
  Norfolk, Virginia         | 4.29 | 3.54 | 4.15 | 5.39 | 6.11 |
  Olympia, Wash. Terr.      | 4.34 | 2.76 | 0.88 | 0.86 | 0.83 |
  Portland, Oregon          | 3.48 | 2.44 | 1.82 | 0.71 | 0.81 |
  San Diego, Cal.           | 0.68 | 0.26 | 0.05 | 0.02 | 0.23 |
  Sandusky, Ohio            | 2.79 | 3.34 | 5.06 | 4.06 | 4.27 |
  San Francisco, Cal.       | 1.80 | 0.71 | 0.16 | 0.01 | 0.01 |
  Sitka, Alaska             | 4.40 | 3.23 | 3.13 | 5.82 | 5.82 |
  Spokane Falls, Wash. Terr.| 1.99 | 1.38 | 1.00 | 1.04 | 0.25 |
  Washington City           | 3.07 | 2.98 | 4.23 | 4.08 | 4.97 |

           STATIONS.        | Sept.| Oct. | Nov. | Dec. |TOTAL  |
                            |      |      |      |      |INCHES.|
  Bismarck, Dak.            | 1.34 | 1.33 | 0.71 | 0.72 | 21.35 |
  Dayton, Wash. Terr.       | 0.67 | 2.64 | 2.55 | 4.95 | 28.02 |
  Denver, Colorado          | 0.96 | 0.79 | 0.74 | 0.71 | 14.97 |
  Lewiston, Idaho           | 0.52 | 1.93 | 1.66 | 3.40 | 17.11 |
  New Haven, Conn.          | 4.15 | 3.85 | 4.15 | 3.38 | 51.55 |
  Norfolk, Virginia         | 5.23 | 3.96 | 3.58 | 3.80 | 52.14 |
  Olympia, Wash. Terr.      | 2.98 | 5.60 | 8.16 |10.17 | 62.81 |
  Portland, Oregon          | 1.62 | 4.95 | 7.34 | 8.27 | 54.16 |
  San Diego, Cal.           | 0.05 | 0.40 | 0.70 | 2.12 |  9.40 |
  Sandusky, Ohio            | 3.54 | 3.50 | 3.68 | 2.97 | 41.43 |
  San Francisco, Cal.       | 0.15 | 1.13 | 2.70 | 4.72 | 23.32 |
  Sitka, Alaska             | 9.97 | 9.33 |11.87 |12.87 | 97.28 |
  Spokane Falls, Wash. Terr.| 1.14 | 2.90 | 2.22 | 2.06 | 21.19 |
  Washington City           | 4.42 | 3.00 | 2.84 | 2.92 | 42.56 |

_b._ ALLUVIUM. This includes the transported matter of the bottom-lands,
the swales, and the tidal flats. Here we have humus, not only as a
top-dressing, but also intermixed, and sometimes constituting a large
proportion of the soil for a considerable depth. No land could be richer
than this, and its relative proportion to the whole is larger than would
be inferred even from the great number of streams, for it includes the
lowlands about Puget Sound and the lakes. The mountain streams have,
with some exceptions, but little alluvial land. There are areas of
swale, or wet bottom-lands, which may be drained to advantage. The tidal
flats along the Sound are peculiarly fertile, because enriched by both
vegetable and animal matter, including calcareous shells and fish bones.
Owing to this great fertility, and the ease with which large areas are
reclaimed by dykes, their convenience to transportation, and, it may be
added, the labor of clearing the forest lands, the work of dyking these
flats has been commenced, especially in Snohomish and Skagit counties,
and it is thought that two hundred thousand acres may thus be redeemed
from the water. Alluvial lands constitute but a small feature in East

_c._ DRIFT. The origin of these gravel soils is given hereafter, under
the head of Geology. They constitute the hill lands, as distinguished
from the bottom lands and Sound flats on the one hand, and the mountain
lands on the other. They are composed of sand, clay, gravel, and some
large boulders. Rarely the gravel predominates so as to render the land
unfit for cultivation. Sometimes there are only clay and sand, and
sometimes chiefly clay. This soil, though not equal to the alluvium, or
to the basaltic land, is much better than glacial precipitate usually
is. It gave all the indications of a fertile soil, resembling the best
hay lands of Massachusetts, which have the same glacial origin. Its
natural growth is luxuriant, and when cleared it inclines to clothe
itself in white clover and the grasses. It is said to be specially
adapted to fruits and vegetables.

_d._ LOAM. I mean by this a clay soil containing fine-grained sand
enough to make it friable. This is the soil made by the slates and
sandstones of the coal measures, and is generally found on the
highlands above the drift. It is a medium land as to quality, but
valuable for the tendency to grass, which characterizes all the lands of
West Washington. Much of it will make good cropping land. There is a
great deal of it. It is found high on the cretaceous hills and
mountains, often extending to the top.

  [Sidenote: A remarkable soil.]

_e._ BASALT. This is the magic soil of the Great Plain (or plateau) of
the Columbia. And it is found also in large areas on the Cascade
Mountains. It has an ashy look and texture; sometimes black, but
generally of ashen hue. Rarely it is compact and clayey. There are
perhaps twenty thousand square miles of this basaltic land; enough of
itself to make a medium-sized State. Of course there are inequalities in
the productiveness of this land. The basaltic rock in many places crops
out, as mentioned under the head of Topography, and there are coulées
and galled spots. I cannot say what proportion of the surface is
rendered valueless by these irregularities. The outcropping basalt does
not destroy the value of the land; for the soil spaces between the rocks
may be greater than the rock spaces, and whilst unfit for the plough,
they may be suited to trees, or cattle range. But, judging by all that I
saw and heard, I should think that the smooth land considerably
predominates over the rough. Certainly there is more smooth,
comparatively level, fertile, productive, and easily cultivated land
here in proportion to the whole area than I have ever seen elsewhere.
The great plain of East Colorado is a vast and beautiful stretch of
country, but it is unproductive without irrigation. Taking everything
into consideration, the plateau of East Washington seems to me to be
unequaled in combined extent and productiveness.

This subject of soils will be incidentally continued in connection with
the next two heads.


  [Sidenote: Vast vegetation.]

Here the two sides of the Cascade Mountains must again, as under other
heads, be considered separately. The natural vegetation of the west side
is vast rather than varied. Wherever the sun touches the ground, one may
expect to see grass; chiefly white clover and green sward, which seem to
be indigenous to the country. There are, of course, many herbs and
shrubs which need not be mentioned in a report like this. The ferns of
the Snoqualmie bottoms, for size, remind one of the tree ferns of the
carboniferous period, though, of course, not so large. Many of them
were seven feet high, which is five feet higher than I ever saw
elsewhere. The Sal-al is a low shrub, almost herbaceous, and
semi-procumbent, of brown foliage, bearing a berry and belonging to the
wintergreen family, though much larger than the wintergreen of the
Alleghenies. The Sal-al abounds on the little prairie which bears its
name. The mosses are most abundant and luxuriant in the deep, moist
shades of the evergreen forests, and I noticed that the Cayuse ponies
fed upon them as eagerly as reindeer upon the Iceland mosses.

  [Sidenote: Deciduous trees.]

Deciduous trees are rare, but not wholly wanting. The cottonwood grows
to rather extra size. The alder, which is only a large bush in the
Alleghenies, here becomes a tree, perhaps thirty feet high. I saw some
small maples. It is said that there are groves of oak and maple of
sufficient size to cut for lumber.


  [Sidenote: Larch.]

The Larch (tamarack) is interspersed among the evergreens on the Cascade
Mountains, and attains good size. The American larch is rather more
slender in habit than the European variety, but it has a heavy,
close-grained wood, and is regarded as specially suited for railroad
ties--an important point in this country. It is also reported to make
durable fence-posts and ground sills. In Europe its bark is valued for
tanning next to oak bark, and the two are used together. The Venice
turpentine comes from the resinous sap of the larch. The older trees are
better than the younger ones for durability. But with regard to this
class of trees, results depend much on incidental circumstances. Larch
is one of the woods used in Europe for making gas. These are the only
deciduous trees I know of in Washington Territory, except fruit trees.

  [Sidenote: Extraordinary evergreen forests.]

Evergreens constitute the bulk of the great forests, and I shall name
these in the order of their importance: Douglas (or red) fir, white
cedar, hemlock spruce, white pine, balsam (or white) fir and yew.

  [Sidenote: Douglas fir, or Oregon pine.]

  [Sidenote: The best of ship timber.]

The Douglas Fir constitutes the greater part of the forests, but not so
large a proportion as seven-eighths, as stated in the Census report, but
more than one-third, which is the proportion given in Hough's Forestry
Report. The wood of this tree is yellow when young, and hence some
persons make two varieties out of the same tree. When older, it becomes
an orange color, but not red like the heart of the sweet gum and red
cedar. It is, however, usually called the red fir. The tree yields a
clear yellow resin, which is not at present collected. Its timber is of
the best quality, greatly superior to that of the fir tribe generally,
probably superior to that of any other fir-tree in the world. The firs
shade into each other by an almost insensible gradation, and are much
modified by soil and climate, and names have been multiplied
unnecessarily. The fir, like the larch, must be studied in each locality
in order to determine its value. The firs of Sweden and Norway make good
masts and spars, and soft, light boards; but the boards are apt to split
and are not strong enough for ship-work. But the timber of the Douglas
fir is heavy, strong and firm, and well suited to ship-building, as has
been abundantly demonstrated on Puget Sound. For all ordinary building
purposes this timber has a world-wide reputation. It is often called the
"Oregon Pine." Its growth as a tree is luxuriant on good soil, and often
gigantic. I saw many single specimens which I estimated at 300 feet in
height and 10 to 12 feet in diameter. When disconnected, they have the
usual conical shape of the firs, with limbs branching from the ground,
but it is rare to see such specimens in Washington Territory, as the
forests are so dense there is no room for limbs, except near the top.
The trunks stand as straight and regular as posts set with a plumb-line.
This crowding often prevents the full development of the trunk also,
except on the most moist and fertile lands. The absence of lower
branches insures a great length of lumber free from knots.

  [Sidenote: White cedar.]

  [Sidenote: Beautiful house lumber.]

The White Cedar is a variety of the well-known arbor vitæ of the Eastern
States, but there is a wonderful difference in the size and habits of
the tree on the two sides of the Continent. On the Atlantic side it may,
under very favorable circumstances, reach fifty feet in height, but
usually it is dwarfish and crooked. But in Washington Territory the
white cedar is the peer of the Douglas fir, and its largest specimens
perhaps exceed the latter somewhat in diameter. It is also next in
abundance and value. Its wood is soft, light and cream-colored. It
splits with remarkable ease and regularity, so that the pioneer with axe
and frow can prepare all the timbers needed for his house. For shingles
it is fully equal to its congener, the cypress; and for house-facings
and some kinds of furniture it is the favorite wood.

  [Sidenote: Hemlock spruce.]

  [Sidenote: Tanners wanted.]

Hemlock Spruce is not so abundant, but it constitutes a noticeable
element in the Snoqualmie Valley forests. It seems to be exactly the
same tree which so abounds in our Eastern and Northern Lake States, and
is common in the moist valleys all along the Appalachian Mountains. It
is called hemlock in the Northern States, and spruce in the Southern.
Its wood, though unsuited for many purposes, is largely used in the
North for the frames of cheap buildings and also for fencing-plank, and
its bark is in great demand for tanning, especially for making the red
sole leather. It is also used for tanning upper leather and calf-skins,
though its light leather is not so good as that made from the oak barks.
The hemlock bark has not been considered quite equal to the chestnut-oak
(or rock oak) bark for any tanning purposes, but in Virginia the price
is usually the same. It certainly makes good sole leather. The logger in
Washington Territory neglects this tree, and there are no tanneries yet
to call for it, but this will soon be changed, and the hemlock will take
its position, not only as the most beautiful of the evergreens, but as
among the most useful. This tree does not attain as great size as the
two above mentioned, but I observed many specimens ranging from four to
five feet in diameter.

  [Sidenote: White pine.]

The general character of the White Pine is well known. I saw but a few
of them, and they not specially good. I doubt whether this tree forms an
important feature in these forests.

  [Sidenote: Balsam fir.]

  [Sidenote: Large supply of Canada Balsam.]

The Balsam (or White) Fir abounds on the higher slopes of the Cascade
Mountains, and it is so balsamic that it will receive attention from
the collectors of "Canada Balsam," which is becoming increasingly
popular for many purposes, especially in mounting specimens for the
microscope. Such forests as lie near the Snoqualmie Pass will not long
remain unnoticed. The wood is white and easily worked, but the trees do
not rank in size or value with those previously mentioned.

  [Sidenote: The yew.]

The Yew is found sparingly on the mountain heights; but, though
interesting, it seems to have no economic value.

  [Sidenote: The superior timber of Snoqualmie Valley.]

As to the extent of these evergreen forests, they may be said to cover
West Washington with almost unbroken continuity, though they vary in
density and the size of the trees, some tracts containing little or no
mill-timber. In my travels, which were, of course, quite limited, I saw
no forests which answered the usual unqualified descriptions, except in
the Snoqualmie Valley, and here they far exceeded my expectation, as
will be shown in the detailed description, given hereafter, of the
country lying along the line of the Seattle, Lake Shore & Eastern
Railway. The finest forests lie between Puget Sound and the crest of the
Cascade Mountains, though even in this area there are variations. And
after all the chopping and sawing--of which more will be told
later--the forests as yet show but little diminution.

East of the Cascade Range the forests are smaller, and confined to the
mountain sides. There are some narrow belts of pine along the northern
edge of the Great Plain of the Columbia, which furnish a little lumber
for local uses; but these will soon be worked out. The mountain rim
lying along the Canada line is said to be covered with forest, some of
it heavy. The Douglas Fir, the Yellow Pine, the White Pine, and the
Larch are all to be found there. There are also skirts of the same
timber along the Spokane River. And, at wide intervals, there are strips
and bunches of scrubby yellow pine on the Great Plain, which is,
however, generally treeless.

The spurs and ridges of the Blue Mountains are thinly covered with small
pines and larches. There are some areas of mill-timber on the east and
southeast flanks of the Cascade Mountains.

  [Sidenote: Range for horses and cattle.]

The flora of the great plateau presents a strange appearance to the
traveler. The vegetation is short and scanty, the chief growth being the
"sage-brush," a dwarfish, dead-looking shrub, with a hard, crooked stem,
of no value as forage, but which is sometimes used for fuel when
nothing else is to be had. There are said to be some medicinal, and also
some edible, plants; but the only thing of any value is the dry, thin,
short, bunch grass which furnishes a fattening food for horses and
cattle; though many acres are required to support an animal, and close
grazing is rapidly destroying this resource. Indeed, the tract is so
barren and desert-like in appearance that in the geographies of my
boyhood it was put down as a part of the Great American Desert. And yet,
as will be seen hereafter, this is probably the most productive upland
in America.


Lumbering was the first industry of Washington Territory. Even food was
imported for a time. Logging began on Puget Sound, and went up such
streams as afforded transportation and water-power. Steam-power soon
became the chief reliance for sawing, but water-power will be largely
used when the railroads penetrate inland.

Logging and sawing are separate branches of business, which may or may
not be carried on by the same parties. And so with transportation to the
mill and to market. Large concerns carry on all the branches, even to
the building and owning of ships.

  [Sidenote: Magnitude of the lumber business.]

Governor Semple gives the capacity of the Washington Territory saw-mills
in 1887 as 645,500,000 feet of lumber per annum, of which the Puget
Sound mills produce 344,500,000 feet. Of this, they (Puget Sound mills)
sent 200,000,000 feet to California; 2,600,000 to Boston, Mass.; 500,000
feet to other Atlantic ports, and over 100,000,000 feet to foreign
ports. Among foreign ports, London received 551,500 feet, and the rest
went to Mexico, South America, China, Australia, and other Pacific

Mr. Cyrus Walker, of the Puget Mill Company, Port Ludlow, in a letter
which I have from him, says:

  [Sidenote: Vast extent of the lumber market.]

"It is safe to say that the lumber market of the Sound may be considered
all countries and ports on the Pacific Ocean."

But it may make a more vivid impression of the Pacific market for me to
give a list of the ports to which shipments have been actually made in
the last year by the lumber dealers of Puget Sound. This list I get not
only from public documents, but directly from the millers and port

  Hilo, H. I.,
  San Francisco,
  West Coast,
  Sandwich Islands,
  New Caledonia,
  Suava, Feejee Is.,
  Cadera, Chili,
  San Diego,
  San Pedro,
  Hong Kong,
  Enseneda, Mex.,
  Rio de Janeiro,
  Broken Bay,

This is not a complete list of all the ports visited by the lumber ships
of Puget Sound, and by no means represents the business of the future,
which will increase as fast as the mills can be built to furnish the

  [Sidenote: The great saw-mills.]

No one without seeing it can have an adequate idea of the magnitude of
the operations of one of the great saw-mills of Puget Sound. The Puget
Mill Company, for the first ten months of last year, sawed on an average
290,000 feet every day of ten working hours. I visited the Port Blakely
Mills, just across the Sound from Seattle. There I found a fleet of
ships in the harbor, owned chiefly by the company; also, ships building
on the stocks; railroads going out to the logging camps; a basin for
receiving the logs, and a mill, with four separate tracks, bringing the
logs in at one end, and carrying out the lumber at the other. A high
iron trestle carried off the slabs to an enormous fire which never
ceased to burn, where all this waste was consumed.

Around the mill was quite a town, in which a large number of races and
nationalities were represented. This mill cut about 59,000,000 feet in
1887. Up to the 10th of November it had shipped as follows: To
California, 32,464,763 feet; to South America, 6,847,427 feet; to
Sandwich Islands, 1,799,891 feet; to Australia, 6,681,668 feet; to
Feejee Islands, 511,815 feet; and used at home for ship-building,
railroads, etc., 2,312,000 feet.

The Tacoma Mill Company and the Washington Mill Company produced the
following lumber, etc., during 1886 and the first ten months of 1887:

                        LUMBER.        LATH.        PILES.
                         FEET.          NO.       LINEAR FT.
  Tacoma Mill         103,448,350    28,815,095    642,385
  Washington Mill      42,195,478     8,772,800    266,403

There were other large mills whose statistics I was not able to get in
time. Mr. Walker thinks that the cut of all the mills on Puget Sound
averages 1,200,000 feet per day; all of which finds ready sale.

[Sidenote: Profits and prices.]

I was not able to ascertain the profits of these mills, but there can
be no doubt that, with proper management, the profits are very good. The
Seattle wholesale prices were as follows:

  Lumber, common, per thousand feet             $12 00
       "   sized,    "    "      "               14 00
       "   Flooring                    $15 00 to 20 00
  Dressed lumber, per thousand feet     14 00 to 30 00
  Laths                                  2 00 to  2 25
  Shingles                               1 50 to  2 00


  [Sidenote: Clearing the land.]

  [Sidenote: Demand for agricultural products.]

  [Sidenote: Large crops.]

  [Sidenote: Hop-growing on a large scale.]

After hearing of the forests in West Washington, one cannot be surprised
to learn that the agricultural interest develops slowly in this part of
the Territory. Even after the logger has taken what he wants, there
remains a heavy mass of vegetation which is expensive to clear away. A
thorough clearing, including the removal of stumps, costs $75 to $100
per acre; and yet this is sometimes done for hops, hay and vegetables.
But the common way is to "slash and burn," at an expense of ten to
fifteen dollars an acre. This clears off everything but stumps, and such
trees as may be reserved for the mill or other purposes. There are fine
farms in every direction, but I had no means of ascertaining the
proportion of cleared land, or of the agricultural population. The
natural fertility of the soil, the high prices of produce, and the
rapidly growing demand, both foreign and local, will tempt to a wasteful
destruction of timber in order to prepare the ground for crops. There
need be no doubt as to the extraordinary productiveness of the soils,
even beyond that of the same quality of lands elsewhere; because the
climatic conditions are extra favorable for the growth of all crops
suited to the country. There are some crops, such as corn, lima beans
and sweet potatoes, which are contra-indicated. The cool summer nights
check the maturing of these. Wheat, also, is not suited, though produced
to some extent. But for almost everything else the conditions favor
extra production. The conditions could scarcely be better for grass and
hay. The scantiness of the summer rains is more than compensated for by
the long growing seasons in fall and spring. No soil and climate could
be better for oats and potatoes. The reported yield of these three
staples would be called fabulous if not established by good testimony.
Three tons of hay, 100 bushels of oats, and 600 bushels of potatoes per
acre are above the average, but by no means reach the maximum on the
best lands. Most fruits do well. In the production of hops West
Washington has become celebrated as to quality and yield per acre.
This is probably the largest of the agricultural interests in this part
of the Territory, and was at one time enormously profitable. Present
prices are thought to leave some margin, but not much.


  [Sidenote: The changed agricultural conditions of East Washington.]

  [Sidenote: Irrigation in the Yakima Valley.]

As heretofore remarked, the agricultural conditions change suddenly on
crossing the Cascade Mountains to the eastward; and this change begins
at the crest line, and is more marked on the mountain side and near its
base than anywhere else. The winters are longer and more severe, and the
summers drier and hotter. There is natural pasturage similar to that of
the plateau country, coming up to the timber line, the lower edge of
which is high on the mountain. Much of this mountain land, though
covered scantily with sage brush and bunch grass, is really fertile,
and, besides supporting cattle, can be made to bring fair crops of wheat
and other things; but the rainfall is so insufficient that irrigation is
necessary for the development of any large agricultural interest.
Fortunately, in the large basin of the Yakima, irrigating streams are
abundant, and its enterprising people are availing themselves of this
happy resource. By reference to a good map it will be seen that the
Yakima River is made up of an unusual number of streams. A group of
these come together near Ellensburg, and another group near the town of
North Yakima; and there are said to be large bodies of land susceptible
of irrigation by these streams. The Ellensburg valley is thirty miles
long, and about ten miles wide; and is the best agricultural section in
Kittitas County. It is claimed that forty bushels of wheat to the acre
can be produced here without irrigation; and that 1,000,000 bushels of
wheat were actually produced in this basin in 1887. Hay, hops,
vegetables, berries and fruits also do well naturally, but with
irrigation the product is uniformly large. There are four irrigating
canals in the valley. The Teanaway Ditch Company has one fifty miles
long which can water 75,000 acres of land. The Ellensburg Ditch Company
has a ditch ten miles long, covering 10,000 acres. Mr. Bull has one six
miles long, and the owners of the new roller mill have two and a half
miles of ditch.

Next below Kittitas is Yakima County, which contains a number of fertile
valleys, and also good uplands, and is well supplied with irrigating
streams, which have already been brought into use. Two large ditches are
drawn from the Natchess River. Ditches are also taken from the Ahtanum,
which is the principal hop-raising section. A plateau, three by ten
miles, between the Cowiche and Natchess, will all be irrigated. The
Moxee Valley is largely owned by Eastern and other capitalists, who seem
to be expending much money in the improvement of the country. This
company has fourteen miles of ditch.

  [Sidenote: Varied crops.]

By the help of these ditches the people of Yakima Valley are producing
corn, which under the hot sun of the locality perfects its product.
Tobacco has been tried also with fair results. And the Moxee County will
try the dairy business. There is a disposition also to try improved
breeds of cattle. The spirit of enterprise has resulted largely from the
passage of the Northern Pacific Railroad along the Yakima Valley; but at
the same time the greatest obstacle in the way of irrigation lies in the
ownership of alternate sections by this railroad. The Yakima Indians
have good lands, and Klickatat County is well spoken of. Sweet potatoes,
tomatoes, peaches, grapes, and other things requiring much heat, are
said to thrive in the lower parts of the Yakima Valley.

  [Sidenote: The Great Plain.]

  [Sidenote: Boundaries.]

We enter now the last grand division of the country, the Great Plain,
or, more strictly, plateau of the Columbia River. In spite of its
unpromising aspect, this is the chief agricultural region of the Pacific
States. To get the exact boundary, find the point (a little below
Wallula Junction) where Washington and Oregon both corner on the
Columbia River. From this point, follow the Columbia up to the mouth of
Spokane River; follow Spokane River up to the Idaho line; follow the
Idaho line south to the Oregon line; follow the Oregon line due-west to
the beginning, and within these lines lies the region which is destined
to be the granary of the Pacific States.

  [Sidenote: Early history.]

The settlement of this plain began near Walla Walla, where a Christian
mission was established by Whitman, the hero and martyr, who saved this
country to the United States. Hence the most thickly populated part of
the plain is between the Oregon line and Snake River. This region was
supplied with transportation by the Oregon Railway and Navigation
Company. The largest agricultural production is here.

  [Sidenote: Area and population.]

Immigration next moved north of Snake River into the valley of the
Palouse River, and here we have the next largest area of production.
When the Northern Pacific Railroad came in from the east, the new-comers
entered the Great Bend country, which is the northern half of the
plain. The chief settlement here is in Spokane and Lincoln counties,
which cover nearly half of the Great Bend. Douglas County covers the
remainder, and is beginning to be settled. There are ten counties on the
plateau, with an aggregate area of 20,000 square miles and a population
of 52,000. Of this population, 20,000 is south of the Snake River,
14,000 north of Snake River, and 18,000 in the Great Bend, including
Spokane Falls.

  [Sidenote: Amazing wheat crops: surpassing all other States.]

The great staple of this country is wheat, though almost every crop is
grown, and most of them with remarkable results. Corn is grown only
south of Snake River, where it yields thirty bushels to the acre. The
average yield of wheat year by year for the entire Territory is put by
Governor Squire at twenty-five bushels, and no one who knows the country
can regard this otherwise than as a moderate estimate. This average
places Washington Territory beyond comparison first among the States of
America, and, so far as I can learn, second only to England among other
nations. England, by the highest manuring, has brought her wheat product
up to thirty bushels, which is double the average of former years. By
the census of 1880, Washington Territory, as a whole, leads all the
other States. The following tables give the average of ten of the chief
wheat-producing States:

      WHEAT, PER ACRE.        BUSHELS.

  California                   15.8
  Dakota                       10.6
  Minnesota                    11.3
  New York                     15.7
  Ohio                         18.0
  Pennsylvania                 13.4
  Virginia                      8.6
  Washington Territory         23.5
  Oregon                       16.8
  Illinois                     15.5

The year 1886 was the worst wheat year ever known in Washington
Territory: its crop averaged sixteen and a half bushels.

  [Sidenote: Railroads overwhelmed with freight.]

It is thought that the wheat crop of East Washington for 1887 will
exceed 10,000,000 bushels. It certainly went far beyond the ability of
the railroads to carry it away before winter. The most amazing glut of
freight I have ever seen was along the railroads in Walla Walla County.
Not only were the depots crowded to the roof, but piles of sacks larger
than the depots stood outside. It was a common sight through the whole
Snake River country to see 10,000 sacks of wheat in one pile outside of
the depots.

  [Sidenote: Price of wheat and cost of production.]

The price of wheat runs from 40 cents to 60 cents a bushel; whilst the
cost of production on good land need not exceed 25 cents a bushel. Mr.
Hamilton, of Colfax, has a farm which he cultivates entirely by hired
labor, and he told me that the cost of his wheat was from 20 cents to 25
cents, and that his profit was $5 per acre. Good farms about Colfax can
be rented out at $2.50 per acre for the whole farm. Mr. Miles C. Moore,
of Walla Walla, probably the most exact business man of that region,
farms largely by hiring labor. He gave me the following statement of his
own operations:


  _Dr._  Cost of ploughing, per acre            $1 50
         Cost of twice harrowing and sowing      1 00
         Seed, 1-1/4 bushel                        62
         Thirteen sacks at 8 cents               1 04
         Keeping up fences                         10
         Harvesting and hauling five miles to
          depot, 17 cents per bushel             4 76
                                                $9 02

  _Cr._  By 28 bushels per acre at 50 cents    $14 00
             Cost of production                  9 00
             Profit                             $5 00

This product could not be expected on inferior lands, but with the
working farmer the cost of production is less. The yield of wheat on
the best lands of East Washington is large--almost beyond belief. Mr.
Houghton, attorney for the Spokane Falls and Palouse Railroad, told me
that he had known of 800 bushels of wheat being raised on ten acres;
that it was measured by a committee. Mr. Miles C. Moore has known 1,000
acres to average fifty bushels. A farmer (apparently honest) told me
that he had raised seventy-five bushels to the acre over his whole wheat
area. His crop was harvested by the acre, and the area measured by the
county surveyor. It was all sold, except seed. Thus he got both area and
product accurately. Many more instances were stated to me on good
authority. But there are different grades of fertility in these lands as
in other lands, and the amount of rainfall makes a difference also.
Wallula has but twelve inches of rain, and is unproductive. There must
be fifteen inches for wheat. Walla Walla has seventeen, and is
productive. Nearer to the Blue Mountains the rainfall is thirty to
thirty-five inches; here are the largest crops. Spokane Falls has
twenty-one inches. Yet where else on the earth can such crops be raised
even occasionally? I have been growing wheat for thirty-five years on
good land in the Valley of Virginia, and I never could reach thirty
bushels to the acre on a single field; and I do not believe that my
neighbors can do better than I do. We count twenty bushels an extra

  [Sidenote: Also barley and oats.]

Besides wheat, these lands produce barley of superior quality, weighing
fifty pounds to the bushel, at the rate of fifty to sixty bushels per
acre, and oats weighing thirty-eight pounds to the bushel at the same
rate per acre. The weight of wheat is sixty pounds to the bushel. Barley
sells at 90 cents per 100 pounds, and is largely shipped East to be made
into beer.

The wheat usually grown is the Little Club, a short, strong white wheat;
but the Little Giant, Red Chaff and Chili Giant are productive. Spring
wheat is generally sown, but winter wheat is probably best. Blue stem
brings five cents extra in Portland. Freight, $5 a ton from Walla Walla
to Portland; thirty-three bushels counted a ton.

The wheat here has no enemies--no fly, nor rust, nor weeds, nor lodging.

  [Sidenote: The soil a natural fertilizer.]

Much of the land has been cultivated for sixteen years without rest or
manure, and without diminution of crop; but the best farmers prefer to
rest and cultivate in alternate years. By the latter system the
ploughing is done in the off-year, and the land left a naked fallow.
This is thought to cleanse the land and renew its strength. And in some
cases in which lands have an excess of alkali, their productiveness
increases with cultivation. Sometimes the land contains as much as
eighteen pounds of potash to the cubic yard; which fact, by the way,
suggests the possibility of leaching the land to procure potash and
other alkalies.

  [Sidenote: Quality of the wheat.]

The wheat of the Pacific coast has 4 per cent. less gluten in it than
the Eastern wheat, and this practically shuts it out of the Eastern
market. Nitrogen in Washington Territory wheat is 22 per cent. to 26 per
cent., whilst in the Eastern it is 34 per cent. to 40 per cent., and
inferior in quality. The true gluten is too brittle. It is better than
the California wheat, however, which has 4 per cent. to 6 per cent. less
nitrogenous matter, and the gluten inferior in quality. But the
California wheat makes a whiter flour than the Washington Territory
wheat, which is an advantage in selling. It should be remarked that the
term nitrogen, when applied technically to wheat, includes true gluten,
the phosphates, and all albuminoids, and excludes starch, sugar and
water, which latter comprise about seventy-two per cent. of the wheat.
Still, the Washington Territory wheat-grower has the advantage in
quantity per acre, which gives him a better profit than is now made in
California or any Eastern State. The price at Spokane Falls varies from
45 cents to 60 cents per bushel, which would give the farmer $10 to
$12.50 per acre for his crop, which is more than the average Eastern
farmer gets, whilst the cost of production ought to be, and ultimately
will be, less.

  [Sidenote: The market in England, China, and other Asiatic ports.]

Flour is sent to England, by Cape Horn, at a cost of $1.30 per barrel
from Spokane Falls, and in Liverpool brings within 20 cents a barrel as
much as the Minneapolis flour, and it is also shipped to China and other
Asiatic ports, where it seems destined to supersede rice for bread.
China raises wheat, but not nearly enough for home consumption. The
Asiatic and Oceanic market will, ultimately, want all the wheat of our
Pacific States.

  [Sidenote: Astonishing growth of vegetables.]

  [Sidenote: Crops without rain.]

Besides the cereals, vegetables of nearly all kinds grow to great size
on this plateau. Those requiring a more uniformly warm temperature, such
as tomatoes, sweet potatoes, beans and peanuts, do best in the region
lying south of the Snake River, which is much less elevated than the
country north and east. And this is true also of peaches, grapes, and
other fruits requiring similar conditions. But as regards most
vegetables, especially roots, and also fruits, the plateau generally is
very productive. This is almost unaccountable in view of the fact that
after the first of June there is little or no rain until late in the
fall. Whilst rain seems to be necessary to start the small seeds, large
crops of potatoes are sometimes raised without a drop of rain. The
moisture must come partly from the soil, which has retained the winter
water, and partly from the deposition of moisture by the sea-air which
comes through the gap in the Cascade Mountains and penetrates the deep,
loose soil. Mr. Paul F. Mohr has measured a parsnip four feet long and
eight inches across the top. I saw potatoes in Colfax, thirty of which
filled a bushel measure.

As before intimated, I doubt whether the plateau can ever become a good
grass and hay country. For long forage, besides straw, the people must
depend upon the cereals mowed in the green state.

  [Sidenote: West (not East) Washington is to be the great cattle

For this reason the plateau, as will also be the case with the great
plains eastward, can never carry the number of cattle that can be grazed
in a grass country. A farmer told me it required fifteen acres of bunch
grass to support one horse or steer, whilst in a grass country three
acres are ample, and on the best sods one acre is sufficient. Still, the
bunch grass is, and ought to be, utilized. And the areas of unimproved
land are so vast that the herds of cattle, horses and sheep which range
upon them altogether constitute a large item of wealth. And on these
treeless plains the effort seems to be to train the cattle and horses to
live like buffaloes and wild horses in both summer and winter.

  [Sidenote: Tree-planting.]

The tree problem will, I think, work out satisfactorily, though, of
course, no such trees can ever be produced there as abound in West
Washington. Walla Walla is embowered in trees of artificial growth. The
Lombardy poplar seems to have been most successful. At various points I
saw plantations of box elder, and was told that this tree is easily
grown. The cottonwood is said to grow readily. Captain John McGowan
reports the successful culture of locust, walnut, maple and catalpa in
Lincoln County. He says, also, that the plum, peach, apricot, apple,
pear and grape succeed: and so with strawberries, raspberries and
blackberries. All these fruits are grown about Spokane Falls, but I
think that the grape and peach sometimes fail to mature. A good many
plantations of trees have been set out under the timber-culture act of
Congress, but it is thought that much imposition has been practised on
the Government by the failure to take proper care of the trees after
they were planted. The truth about the whole matter seems to be that,
with proper care, trees of most varieties may be grown on the plateau,
but that they will grow slowly and not attain large size. I might add
many details concerning the products of this wonderful country, but
these will suffice as illustrations.


  [Sidenote: Good supply of labor, but more wanted.]

Under this head I will merely say that, though the laboring population
of Washington Territory is very mixed and has not the settled character
of labor in the old States, and though many more laborers could find
employment, there does not seem to be any special deficiency of this
class, and the high wages that are paid will, no doubt, bring in more
workmen as they are wanted.

  [Sidenote: Wages.]

Governor Squire, in his report for 1885, page 41, gives quite a detailed
list of wages, which shows that the rates are at least fifty per cent.
higher than in the Middle States, and double what is paid in the
Southern Atlantic States. Farm laborers get from $25 to $30 a month and
board. Loggers pay from $35 to $40 per month to common hands, and $65 to
$70 to teamsters. Skilled labor receives high wages, and railway
contractors sometimes have to pay $2 to $2.50 per day for common
hands. Servant girls are scarce, and wanted, at $15 a month and board.
Hotel servants get from $20 to $25 a month. Chinamen are extensively
employed for family servants. Many of them are tolerable cooks, and get
$30 a month and board. Indians are working more than formerly. The men
"slash" the forests, pick hops, etc. Squaws always were industrious--had
to be! The Sandwich Islands, as well as China and Japan, furnish some
laborers. The employers are favorable to this class of immigrants,
whilst the white laborers are bitterly opposed to them. Canada will
continue to employ cheap Chinese labor, and thus place our Pacific
States at a disadvantage, if the present policy of excluding Chinese
labor is continued.




I shall not say much about the historical geology of Washington
Territory, because it contains some problems which have never been
adequately studied, and which I had no opportunity to investigate. It is
to be hoped that the regular work of the Government Survey may soon be
extended to this important region. Hitherto it has been neglected. A few
able geologists such as Joseph Le Conte, Pumpelly, Newberry, Bailey
Willis, and some others, have made visits to the country on special
errands; but except the treatise of Bailey Willis in Vol. XV. of the
Census Reports, and some brief allusions to the country in systematic
works on general geology, I had nothing to guide me as to the structure
of the country, or the age of its deposits. For all practical purposes,
however, I had no difficulty in understanding the work I had to do.
[Sidenote: The Western Coast regions younger than the Rocky Mountains
and Appalachians.]

  [Sidenote: An outlying Continent.]

  [Sidenote: The rise of the West Coast.]

All agree that the country west of the Rocky Mountains proper, and
including nearly all of California, Oregon, and Washington Territory,
is geologically younger than the main range, and younger than the
Appalachian country. At the close of the carboniferous period proper,
the Rocky Mountain range constituted a separate continent, with a sea
covering what is now the main Mississippi Valley, including the wide
plains immediately east of the Rocky Mountains, and connecting,
probably, with the polar sea, whilst the Pacific Ocean washed the
western edge of this Rocky Mountain continent; so that until after that
period there were no Wahsatch and Uintah mountains, no Sierra Nevada and
Cascade Range, no Coast Range, and, of course, none of the intervening
country. It is quite possible, however, that there was a third continent
lying west of the present continent in what is now ocean, from whose
waste the sediments were derived which were afterwards elevated and
became the land now included in the three States bordering the Pacific,
whilst the mother continent, which furnished the sediments, sank beneath
the ocean. If there were such an outlying continent, additional force is
given to the views of Dr. George F. Becker, endorsed by Dr. C. A. White,
and to some extent anticipated by Prof. J. D. Whitney, which render it
probable on other grounds that the two great lines of mountains, viz.,
the Sierra Nevada and Cascade Range and the Coast Range, began their
upward movement simultaneously during the early ages of the Juro-Trias.
The rise of these mountain lines was gradual and marked by reverse
movements, whereby, after appearing above the surface, they sank and
rose alternately, receiving fresh sediments, which, especially in the
Washington Territory region and part of Oregon and California, when
above water, became clothed with an enormous vegetation which was packed
into coal-beds, layer after layer. In the lapse of time these all came
above the surface. The mountains grew higher and higher, attended by
intense heat in the axes of the ranges, and at different periods, down
almost to the present, exhibiting volcanic action on an enormous scale.
At other periods, a large portion of the region was visited by
ice-floods, succeeded by water-floods, which top-dressed great areas
with a mingled deposit of gravel, sand and mud, and carried away vast
blocks of the rocky substance of the country, and cut deep channels in
all the highlands.

As Washington Territory is now presented to us, it exhibits a scene of
mountains, lowlands, and elevated plateaus, which are full of interest
and variety. Some general account of its topography has already been


  [Sidenote: The rocks and minerals of the Cascade Mountains.]

The core of these high ranges is chiefly rock originally stratified,
which has been metamorphosed by heat, and perhaps inside of all, with
branches bursting out at various places, are plutonic rocks which have
never been stratified. This is the state of things on the top of the
Cascade Range, near Snoqualmie Pass, as well as on some subordinate
peaks and ranges. On Mount Logan, the Denny Mountain, etc., are large
bodies of syenitic granite whose age I have no means of determining.
Associated with this are quartzites of fine grain, and extremely hard,
porphyries, and serpentinoid and chloritic rocks of different sorts, in
which are imbedded the magnetic iron ores; and also large beds of
crystalline limestone, both fine and coarse grained. Crossing these, at
various angles, are veins containing the precious and base metals.

  [Sidenote: The metamorphic rocks of doubtful origin.]

Whether these rocks are Palæozoic or Archæan in their origin, or whether
they are simply the metamorphosed strata of the upper Juro-Trias, or the
lower Cretaceous, is a question for future study. These plutonic and
metamorphic rocks are believed to extend through the mountainous region
lying north of the Columbia River; and they are reported also in the
Coeur d'Alene Mountains. It is quite certain that on both flanks of
the Cascade Mountains we find in their natural state Cretaceous
conglomerates, sandstones, and shales bearing coal, at least in their
upper beds. The deposits on the east side of the mountain have been much
grooved and denuded, until we find only small areas of the Cretaceous
strata on the Yakima and the Wenatchie rivers, and the Peshastan ridge
between, with a patch of the coal-bearing rocks on the Yakima, and
another on the Wenatchie. On the west side of the mountain range, the
Cretaceous and coal-bearing areas are much larger.

  [Sidenote: The coal beds.]

The coal deposits of all the Cretaceous regions of the West are regarded
as belonging to the Laramie period which closed the Cretaceous age, and
constitutes a transition period between the Cretaceous and Tertiary. But
I do not regard this question as settled. The inferior lignites of the
Rocky Mountains, and the semi-lignites which constitute the upper beds
of the Washington Cretaceous coal properly belong to the Laramie period;
but to include the underlying bituminous coals in the same group may be
a matter of question. More will be said in reference to these coal beds
under the next head. The Western coal-bearing rocks begin on outlying
mountains, standing at the west foot of the main Cascade Range. These
outlyers are irregular in size, height and direction; but many of them
are 1,000 to 1,500 feet in height, and they are found in groups,
separated by denuded spaces, from the Cascade Mountains to the Pacific
Ocean, and from the Canada line nearly to the Columbia River. The
largest and most important field, however, lies south of the Snoqualmie
River and between Puget Sound and the Cascade Mountains. Some of the
coals found in the most southern part of the field, and on the Coast
Range, are referred to the Tertiary period.

A smaller and wholly undeveloped field lies on the Skagit River, and
another on, and west of Bellingham Bay. Similar beds are found on
Vancouver's Island. Coal-bearing strata are found also on the Chehalis,
Des Chutes, Nisqually and Cowlitz rivers. Whilst some of these southern
and western strata are referred to the Tertiary period, there has been
no systematic study of their geologic relations.

  [Sidenote: The volcanic mountains and their great activity.]

It seems to be settled, however, that the lofty volcanic mountains which
form conspicuous features in the scenery of the Cascade Range, were
active in the Tertiary period, and not only built their own crests 9,000
to 15,000 feet high, but inundated much of the surrounding country with
lava to an amazing breadth and depth. In this region, Mount Baker, Mount
Ranier (also called Mount Tacoma), Mount St. Helens and Mount Adams in
Washington Territory, and Mount Hood in Oregon, were the centres of the
grandest operations; and so continued for ages.

  [Sidenote: The wonderful cañon of the Columbia River.]

We see gigantic results of this activity in the cañon 1,000 to over
3,000 feet deep, which the Columbia River has cut through this volcanic
matter in its passage through the Cascade Mountains. This volcanic
deposit consists of brown basalt, which in cooling crystallized into
vertical, polygonal prisms, or columns, which have been sculptured by
the weather into endlessly varied forms, beautiful, fantastic, and
grand; altogether presenting a scene, or succession of scenes, for
twenty-five miles, such as can nowhere else be equaled on the American
continent, unless it be near by, on a tributary of the Columbia, the Des
Chutes River of Oregon.

  [Sidenote: The great sheets of basalt.]

This great pile of basalt was built up by a succession of overflows of
lava, the joints of which are plainly visible. The basaltic area, though
perhaps thickest here, continues with a thickness of 1,000 to 1,500 feet
up the Columbia for hundreds of miles; indeed the whole plateau, or
prairie country of East Washington, which is a quadrilateral of some 200
miles in diameter, is but a continuation of the great lava-sheet seen at
the Cascades and the Dalles. Through it the Columbia and Snake rivers
have cut deep channels; and other, though shallower channels, have been
cut across the surface of the plateau by departed streams.

  [Sidenote: Origin of the rich soil of East Washington.]

Whether the extremely fertile soil which overlies the basalt in East
Washington is a top-dressing of volcanic ashes, or is decomposed basalt,
cannot readily be determined. It cannot be referred to the Glacial
period, as I observed no appearance of drift anywhere except in the
valley of Spokane River. Such a wide spread of lava is not unexampled in
view of somewhat similar overflows now occurring at intervals in the
Sandwich Islands, where lava runs and spreads itself like water. These
Hawaiian flows are mentioned by Captain C. F. Dutton in his report of
the Zuni Plateau.

A ledge of sandstone belonging to the Meiocene Tertiary is visible under
the basalt at the lower cascade in the Columbia River; and a stratum of
iron ore and vegetable matter is found on the Willamette at Oswego,
lying horizontally between great masses of basalt, showing a long
interval between overflows.

  [Sidenote: The volcanoes not wholly extinct.]

These eruptions probably continued with diminishing force until near the
present time. It is reported that Mount Hood has sent out smoke or steam
since the settlement of Oregon. The crater of Mount Ranier was visited
by two gentlemen within a few years, and a night spent in its bottom by
the side of a jet of steam. Such, at least, is the account given by one
of them, Mr. Stevens.

  [Sidenote: Glacial drift.]

The Quaternary or Drift Period has left abundant, though by no means
universal, traces of its presence. As before intimated, I saw no relics
of it in East Washington, except a deposit of rather small, generally
very small, and well-rounded quartz gravel, thickly strewing, and really
forming, the flats bordering Spokane River. This gravel macadamizes the
streets of the City of Spokane Falls, and the neighboring roads, so as
to make them firm at all seasons. These gravelly bottoms are not
tillable except in a few spots.

The undulating country north and east of Puget Sound is in many places
deeply covered with drift material which shows the effect of both ice
and water. Blocks of partially rounded granite several feet in diameter
are found on the hills around Seattle. This gravel deposit is not often
found on high points, but there is a ridge in the Cascade Mountains,
near Salal Prairie, which is thickly bestrewed at an elevation of 1,000
feet. This, however, was quite exceptional, and may be the lateral
moraine of a local glacier. The deposit around Seattle is not only easy
to cultivate (its soil being a light blue loam), but seems fertile. The
bottom lands are free from gravel.

So much for the general geology.


     NOTE.--The location of the coal-fields and collieries mentioned in
     the following pages may be seen on an accompanying map.

Under the head of Economic Geology, I shall describe with more detail
the mineral beds which have a commercial value, and in the following
order:--I. Coal; II. Iron Ore; III. Granite, Limestone, and Marble; IV.
Precious and Base Metals.

  [Sidenote: Thickness of the Coal Measures.]

I. COAL.--The thickness of the Coal Measures of the Puget Sound basin is
estimated by Bailey Willis at something like 14,000 feet, though he
admits the obvious possibility of error in the calculation by reason of
undiscovered faults. We may fairly expect them, however, to be thicker
than the same group in the Rocky Mountains, which measure about 9,000
feet. As heretofore remarked, the sediments become thinner from west to
east. Of course, the maximum thickness is not to be expected in every
locality. Mr. Willis's estimate was made in the Wilkeson and Green River
fields, and really did not reach the limit of the coal-bearing rocks.
The coal rocks of the Cedar River and Snoqualmie basin have never, so
far as I know, been estimated, but probably this group is equal in
thickness to that of any other part of the field. The difficulty of
measurement arises from the numerous fractures and changes of strike
which exist.

  [Sidenote: Fifteen workable seams.]

The number of distinct workable seams of coal of three feet and upwards,
belonging to the measures, may safely be put down at not less than

  [Sidenote: Different kinds of coal described.]

Before considering the quality of these coals, I will, for better
understanding, make some prefatory statements in regard to the character
of coals generally. Charcoal has greater purity than mineral coals
usually have, because there is nothing in the charcoal except what
naturally belongs to the woody matter. Mineral coal, however, having
been buried in water, mud, and sand, must, almost of necessity, have
some mixture of foreign matter, either slate, which is simply hardened
mud; silica, which may have been derived from sand; iron and sulphur,
some of which may have been in the wood, but most of it, probably,
introduced in solutions; to which should be added, unexpelled oxygen,
which is not only useless as fuel, but which combines with a portion of
the contained hydrogen, and forms water in the substance of the coal.

The proportion of ash in coals of the same class is usually determined
by the amount of slate in the coal, in addition to the mineral matter
which belonged originally to the vegetable material from which the coal
was formed. In the pure state, the proportion of ash increases as the
transformation of woody fibre goes on from peat to anthracite.

  [Sidenote: The chemical changes in coal beds.]

It is worth while to note what are the changes which take place in the
vegetable matter during the process. It may be described in a word as a
progressive loss of oxygen, and by this loss the coal becomes richer,
for the reason just given. The deoxidizing process is carried on by
means of chemical changes in the substance of the coaly matter. The
oxygen combining with a certain proportion of the carbon, forms carbon
di-oxide, or carbonic acid gas; and a certain other portion, combining
with hydrogen, forms water. Both of these are volatile in their
character, and gradually escape. Another loss is effected by the
combination of hydrogen and carbon, forming marsh gas. We have deadly
proof that these combinations are in progress in all coal mines by the
occurrence of "choke-damp" and "fire-damp," which are the miners' names
for these gases.

  [Sidenote: Deficient nomenclature.]

Unfortunately, we have no settled nomenclature for the varieties of
coal, excepting the broad names lignite or brown coal, bituminous coal,
and anthracite. Even the term "bituminous" is scientifically inaccurate,
there being, in fact, no bitumen in any coal. But it is applied to such
coals as contain more oxygen and volatile combustible matter and water
than anthracite, and less of these elements than lignite. The term
lignite is made to include a great variety of substances, covering the
lignites of the Juro-Trias of James River (Dutch Gap), which retain not
only the structure, but the appearance of decaying wood; the lignites of
the State of Mississippi, which are of the same geologic age as those of
the Rocky Mountains, but which, owing to their watery and crumbly
character, are unfit for market; the lignites of the Grand and Moreau
rivers of Dakota, which are reported to have no commercial value; the
lignites of Bozeman, Montana, which are really valuable, but soon break
down into chips and grits; the lignites of Green River, Wyoming, which
are firm, bright, lump coals; and the lignites of King County,
Washington Territory, many of which are hard, bright, steam and shipping
coals. And when brought to the laboratory, it is found that chemically
these lignites vary even more than they do optically.

  [Sidenote: Lignite an unsuitable name for the coals of Washington

This want of a varied nomenclature is to be regretted, because it
sometimes handicaps a good coal with an inferior name. It is only of
late that the Laramie or Cretaceous coals of Washington Territory have
been divided into lignites, bituminous coals, and anthracites. These
grade into each other so insensibly that it would be impossible to
classify them sharply. None of the lignites which I saw were as low in
grade as the typical lignite. The woody structure was quite discernible
in some samples of the Franklin coal, and less in the Newcastle and
Green River; but in respect to the two latter, I could not with the
naked eye discern more of the woody structure than I have seen in some
of the West Virginia coals, which belong to the Carboniferous period. I
sat by fires of Newcastle and neighboring coals for a month, and
observed no unusual amount of smoke, and no peculiar odor. By analysis,
these coals show a larger percentage of oxygen than the typical
bituminous coal, but decidedly less than is found in the brown coal of
Germany, or in some of the lignites of Montana. They need a new name.
Their heating power is not so great as that of the bituminous coals of
the same region. Their streak and powder are less black, and their
fracture more conchoidal, but not decidedly so.

The bituminous coals have the usual cubical fracture. The Wilkeson
readily breaks down into small cubes. The lignites are black and
lustrous. They come out as lumpy as ordinary coal, and, when exposed to
weather, do not break up into powder and grits like ordinary lignite.
This is true, at least, of the Newcastle coal.

  [Sidenote: The coking quality not general in these coals, but found in

The coking quality of these coals cannot be determined by calculating
the proportion between the fixed carbon and the volatile, combustible
matter. I am not sure that Professor Fraser's fuel ratio tables are a
safe guide in any case. So far as now known, only a few of the
Washington Territory coals can be made into good coke. On this point,
however, we have only laboratory and rough field tests, excepting at the
Wilkeson mines, where twenty-five ovens were turning out a superior
quality of coke, as proved by every test save the use of it in high
furnace stacks, in which there had been no opportunity for trial. It is
claimed by many persons that seams on Green River, Skagit, Yakima, and
Snoqualmie will furnish good coking coal. The coal on Snoqualmie
Mountain, near Hop Ranch, has not been studied, but it certainly has the
external characteristics of good coking coal, and Mr. Peter Kirke made a
rough trial of it in an earth-pit with decidedly encouraging results.

Somewhat similar coal is found on Raging River, but where opened, so
much slate was interleaved with the coal that washing would be necessary
before use. More will be said hereafter with regard to these coals; but
the remark may be repeated here in respect to the entire Puget Sound
basin, that much additional examination is necessary before its coals
will be fully understood. The variations in character of these are not
owing entirely, or even chiefly, to their relative ages, but also to the
conditions to which they have been subjected, especially in respect to
heat. This metamorphic agency has acted not only in the body of the
Cascade Mountains, but all through the coal-fields, where faults,
flexures, and intrusive rocks have occasioned changes in the original
condition of the coal-beds, giving results along the whole scale of
metamorphism from lignite to anthracite.

  [Sidenote: Analyses of Washington Territory coals.]

I here introduce (on the opposite page) a table of analyses made in
Washington City from representative samples of Washington Territory
coals and lignites selected by Mr. Bailey Willis during the examination
which he made of this field for the Census Bureau, and found in Vol. XV.
of the Census Reports.


I will now give some account of the principal coal seams which have been
worked in Washington Territory, namely, those in the field lying east
and southeast of Puget Sound; and in so doing I shall add to my own
knowledge all information from any reliable sources. Unfortunately, the
sources of information are few.


  [Sidenote: Authorities.]

In the Report of Bailey Willis to Professor Pumpelly for the Census
Bureau, we have the best account extant of the Carbon River and Green
River basins. Mr. Willis spent three years in his examination, assisted
by topographical engineers. He made numerous trial-pits and borings with
diamond drill, and forwarded samples to Washington City for analysis.
Mr. F. H. Whitworth, of Seattle, accompanied me in my excursions, and
prepared maps which are filed herewith. Mr. Whitworth has probably more
practical knowledge of the Puget Sound coal basin than any one else. A
small volume on the Pacific coal field was prepared some years ago by
Mr. W. A. Goodyear. And Governor Squire's lucid and intelligent reports
contain valuable information upon the coal, and all the other interests
of Washington Territory. Governor Semple has also, in his Report for
1887, given us the latest official information.


Key for Sites:
  A  Miles City, Dakota.
  B  Newcastle, Washington Territory.
  C  Vein (?) G. R. C.
  D  Vein 33, G. R. C.
  E  Vein (?), G. R. C.
  F  Vein xviii. G. R. C.
  G  Vein ix. G. R. C.
  H  Vein vi. G. R. C.
  I  Vein iii. G. R. C.
  J  Upper Yakima River, Wash'n Ter.
  K  Carbon Station, Wyoming Territory.
  L  Rock Springs, Wyoming Territory.
  M  Wingate Vein, Carbonado.
  N  Vein cxxiii. W. C.
  O  Vein xviii. W. C.
  P  Vein v. W. C.
  Q  Vein i. W. C.
  R  Vein lviii. B. B. C.
  S  Vein xliv. B. B. C.
  T  Vein _d_, Carbon River, W. C.
  U  Skagit River, Washington Territory.
  V  Raton, New Mexico.
  W  El Moro, New Mexico.

Abbreviations for final row (Coke):
  Wls      Worthless
  Exc      Excellent
  B&F      Black and Friable
  Ra Poor  Rather Poor

                        | LIGNITES. |    BITUMINOUS   |   BITUMINOUS    |
                        |           |     LIGNITES.   |     COALS.      |
                        |     |     |     |     |     |     |     |     |
                        |     |     |     |     |     |     |     |     |
                        |     |     |     |     |     |     |     |     |
                        |     |     |     |     |     |     |     |     |
                        |     |     |     |     |     |     |     |     |
                        |     |     |     |     |     |     |     |     |
                        |  A  |  B  |  J  |  K  |  L  |  U  |  V  |  W  |
  Original Sample No.   |  79 |  24 |  -- |  -- |  -- |  76 |  -- |  --
  Moisture              |14.10| 4.16| 0.80| 8.10| 7.00| 1.17| 2.0 | 1.66|
  Volatile Hydro-Carbons|36.95|44.84|36.02|34.70|36.81|14.40|37.1 |34.48|
  Fixed Carbon          |35.76|43.86|28.48|51.65|54.46|64.56|51.6 |60.08|
  Ash                   |13.19| 7.14|28.23| 5.55| 1.73|19.87| 9.3 | 3.78|
  F. C.--V. H. C.       | 0.97| 0.98| 1.48| 1.48| 1.23| 4.48| 1.39| 1.74|
                        |     |     |     |     |     |     |     |     |
  Coke                  | None| None| Fair| ----| ----| Ra  | Good| Good|
                        |     |     |     |     |     | Poor|     |     |

                        |                LIGNITES.                |
                        |    Green River Field, Washington Ter.   |
                        |     |     |     |     |     |     |     |
                        |     |     |     |     |     |     |     |
                        |     |     |     |     |     |     |     |
                        |     |     |     |     |     |     |     |
                        |  C  |  D  |  E  |  F  |  G  |  H  |  I  |
  Original Sample No.   |  59 |  56 |  50 |  27 |  42 |  43 |  45 |
  Moisture              | 7.27| 9.98| 8.68| 2.50| 4.82| 3.34| 3.24|
  Volatile Hydro-Carbons|36.02|40.63|35.90|45.71|42.02|39.39|39.52|
  Fixed Carbon          |28.48|41.07|47.07|48.37|37.12|41.49|48.39|
  Ash                   |28.23| 8.32| 8.35| 3.42|16.04|15.78| 9.85|
  F. C.--V. H. C.       | 0.79| 1.01| 1.31| 1.06| 0.88| 1.05| 1.22|
                        |     |     |     |     |     |     |     |
  Coke                  | None| None| None| Poor| None| None| Wls |
                        |     |     |     |     | [B] | [C] |     |

  [B] Produced fragile coke in field test.
  [C] Produced fragile coke in field test.

                        |               BITUMINOUS COALS.               |
                        |     Wilkeson Field, Washington Territory.     |
                        |     |     |     |     | Altered by|     |     |
                        |     |     |     |     | Intrusive |     |     |
                        |     |     |     |     |   Rocks.  |     |     |
                        |     |     |     |     +-----+-----+     |     |
                        |  M  |  N  |  O  |  P  |  Q  |  R  |  S  |  T  |
  Original Sample No.   |  12 | 125 |  17 |  64 |  37 | 136 | 135 |  68 |
  Moisture              | 1.80| 3.98| 1.33| 1.16| 1.54| 0.61| 0.44| 2.56|
  Volatile Hydro-Carbons|42.27|28.64|25.88|29.09|28.17|29.58| 5.84| 8.43|
  Fixed Carbon          |52.11|54.10|60.67|60.38|59.70|56.18|73.98|83.27|
  Ash                   | 3.82|13.28|12.12| 9.37|10.59|13.63|19.74| 5.74|
  F. C.--V. H. C.       | 1.23| 1.88| 2.34| 2.07| 2.12| 1.89|12.67| 9.87|
                        |     |     |     |     |     |     |     |     |
  Coke                  | Very| None| Exc | Exc | Poor| B&F | None| None|
                        | good| [D] |     |     | [E] |     |     |     |

  [D] Produced first-class coke in field test.
  [E] Produced first-class coke in field test.

  NOTE.--G. R. C.--Green River column. W. C.--Wilkeson column.
  B. B. C.--Busy Brook column.

  [Sidenote: The different mines.]

In my brief sketches, I shall group the coal-beds as follows: _a_,
Carbon River Group; _b_, the Green River Group; _c_, Cedar River Group;
_d_, the Squak, Raging River, and Snoqualmie Groups; _e_, the Yakima and
Wenatchie Group; _f_, Bellingham Bay, Skagit River, etc.; _g_, British
Columbia Group.

  [Sidenote: Anthracite, coking and gas coals.]

_a. Carbon River Group._--These beds lie on South Prairie Creek and
Carbon River, tributaries of the Puyallup River. Anthracite coal in thin
beds is reported high up on Carbon River, near the base of Mount Ranier;
the result of metamorphism. Also undeveloped outcrops of soft coal at
numerous points on the same river. There are, however, only three
collieries at work in this group. One is called the Carbonado mines,
which are on the Carbon River. Three miles north, a little east, are
the famous Wilkeson mines; and two miles northwest of Wilkeson, are the
South Prairie mines, on South Prairie Creek. (See Map.)


These coal-beds stand at high angles (fifty degrees and upwards), and
dip in different directions. At Carbonado, there are four seams in
pairs, separated by Carbon River, two of which dip to the south, and two
to the north. At the South Prairie mines there are two seams, one of
which dips to the east, and the other to the west. At Wilkeson there are
three seams, all of which dip to the west. Mr. Willis interprets this
coal-field as being a dome-like anticlinal, with compressed and crumpled
sides, whose major axis runs nearly north and south. The Wilkeson and
South Prairie mines are on the line of the major axis, whilst the
Carbonado mines are in a group of subordinate short folds lying south of
the main line. The anticline extends to Nisqually River, and shows two
other coal areas south of Carbon River, the coal of which is said to
resemble the Wilkeson coal.

The Carbon River coal-field first having been almost engulphed by
volcanic uplifts and overflows, and almost buried by glacial drift, is
now visible only in narrow strips along creeks, and at intervals along
the Carbon River.

Owing probably to the heating of its beds, we find in this little field
the coal which stands highest in reputation for coking and heating
qualities. There are some differences in the coal at the three mines.
That at South Prairie was sold chiefly for making gas. The best of the
Wilkeson coal is made into coke, and is in demand beyond the supply. The
price is $7.00 a ton at the ovens. The entire product of the Carbonado
mines is said to go to the Central Pacific Railway. It is impossible to
say what may be under the Drift; but, to all appearance, the amount of
coal here is not large, and the beds are sadly faulted, and pitch deep
into the ground.

  [Sidenote: The Common Point, equidistant between Tacoma and Seattle.]

_b. The Green River Group._--I include in this group the Black Diamond
and Franklin collieries, the Kirke or Moss Bay Company mines, and the
Sugar Loaf Mountain beds. This, as well as the Carbon River field, is
nearly equidistant from Tacoma and Seattle, being about thirty miles in
a right line from each place. The Carbon River basin is geologically
associated with Mount Ranier; the Green River basin with the outliers or
foot ridges of the Cascade Mountains. The latter are much more
approachable than the former. At the east edge of this field, the
Northern Pacific Railroad emerges from the Cascade Mountains, having
come down the cañon of Green River. This point is known as "The Common
Point," because the cities of Tacoma and Seattle are about equally
distant, and the routes afford equally good grades from this point.

The narrow gauge road from Seattle now comes to the Franklin mines, and
by continuing it a few miles to connect with the Northern Pacific there
would be railroad connection to Seattle as well as to Tacoma. The river
here cuts through the Coal Measures, leaving the less valuable part of
the field on the south side. The area of this field is roughly estimated
at fifty square miles. It contains all, or nearly all, the grades of
coal from lignite to bituminous; the variety of coal depending upon the
degree of local disturbance. As a rule, so long as the coal is not
crushed, the more pitched and flexed the rocks, the better the coal;
which fact indemnifies the miner for extra expense in mining. Here, the
tendency is for the seams to become steeper and more broken from west to
east; _i.e._, as they approach the foot-hills of the Cascade Mountains.
The strata in Lizard Mountain on the south side, however, form an
exception. Here the strata are nearly horizontal.

  [Sidenote: Franklin and Black Diamond mines.]

The Franklin mines are on the north bank of Green River and at the south
edge of what has been known as the McKay basin, and the Black Diamond
mines are on, or near, the north edge of the same small, oval synclinal
basin. From this basin the dips become steeper toward the mountain,
where Kirke's beds stand at a high angle. On the west edge of the Green
River basin, say a mile west of Franklin, there is an outcrop of
lignite. The coal of the Franklin and Black Diamond mines is bituminous
lignite. The Kirke coal, or at least part of it, as judged by the eye,
may be called bituminous coal, though not so much deoxidized as the
Wilkeson. The coals mined in this basin are firm, black and shiny; they
burn freely, and make but little dust. They have not, however, so far as
tested, the heating power or coking qualities of the Wilkeson coal. Two
seams are worked at Franklin, and three at Black Diamond. All of the
seams worked are above four feet. A number of volcanic dikes and flows
are found in and around this basin.

  [Sidenote: The Kirke or Moss Bay Company (English) mines.]

The Kirke or Moss Bay Company mines are six miles east of Franklin, and
within a mile of Green River. They lie against the mountain. The strike
of the mountain is northwest. The coal beds dip toward the mountain at
a high angle. There are five seams of from five to fifteen feet in
thickness; one of them (No. 2) may be said to be over forty-seven feet
in thickness, though not all good coal, as the details given below will
show. The top of the outcrops above sea-level are as follows:

  No. 1                 970
  No. 2               1,160
  No. 3               1,350
  No. 4               1,461
  No. 5               1,513

Some places on the outcrop rise much higher. The base of the mountain is
about five hundred feet above sea-level. No shipping has been done from
here. A gang of miners was at work opening the beds, with the special
view of testing their coking qualities in order to be used, if
practicable, by the Moss Bay Company for smelting the steel ores of the
Cascade Mountains.

The only seam well opened when I was there (Nov. 17th and 18th) was No.
3, which is a large bed and shows an excellent quality of bituminous
coal. The bed shows the side and end (or "tooth") structure. The coal is
very black and moderately lustrous, and breaks readily into small
rectangles of less than an inch. Its coking qualities have not been
tested. Nos. 4 and 5 are said to be softer and more powdery, and may
possibly be better for coke than No. 3. They have an available thickness
of about ten feet each. The details of No. 3 are as follows:

  Roof, Black Shale.                  FT.    INS.
  Coal                                 0      9
  Bone                                 1      6
  Coal                                 0      7
  Hard Slate                           2      0
  Coal                                 0      8
  Bone                                 0      2
  Coal                                 0      5
  Bone                                 0      1
  Coal                                 1      2
  Soft Parting                         0      1/2
  Coal                                 1      0
  Bone and Coal                        0      7
  Coal                                 1      0
  Bone                                 0      1
  Coal                                 1      3
  Bone                                 0      1/4
  Coal                                 0      5
  Bone                                 0      1/2
  Coal                                 0      7
  Bone and Coal                        1      8
  Coal                                 0      4-1/2
  Bone                                 0      1
  Coal                                 0      7
  Sandstone bottom.                 -----------
                 Total                15 ft.  3/4 ins.

There is a natural exposure of No. 2, the "Big Seam," which I saw on the
mountain-side above the miners' camp, and took the following details:

  No. 2, Big Seam, descending.        FT.    INS.
  Coal                                 1      2
  Bone                                 0      2-1/2
  Coal                                 0      5
  Bone                                 0      4
  Coal                                 1      4
  Bone                                 0      1-1/2
  Coal                                 1      0
  Bone                                 0      1/4
  Coal                                 0      8
  Bone                                 0      1-1/2
  Coal                                 0      7
  Bone                                 0      1
  Nigger-head and Coal                 0      6
  Bone                                 0      1-1/2
  Coal                                 1      8
  Bone                                 0      1/4
  Coal                                 2      0
  Bone                                 0      4
  Coal                                 1      10
  Bone                                 0      1
  Coal                                 0      7
  Bone                                 0      1-1/2
  Coal                                 1      0
  Bone                                 0      1/4
  Coal                                 1      2
  Bone                                 0      2-1/2
  Coal                                 0      6
  Bone                                 0      1-1/2
  Coal                                 0      3
  Bone                                 0      1/4
  Coal                                 1      3
  Bone                                 0      1/4
  Coal                                 1      8
  Shale                                0      1-1/2
  Coal                                 0      6
  Bone                                 0      4
  Impure Bituminous Matter            21      5-3/4
  Coal, clean and good                 5      6
                 Total                47 ft.  6 ins.

The Kirke mines are sixteen miles from Salal Prairie, and two miles from
the Northern Pacific Railroad at the Common Point. The route has been
surveyed by the Northern Pacific Railroad.

Adjoining the Kirke, or Moss Bay Company property, is a section of coal
land (No. 34) on Sugar Loaf Mountain, owned by parties in Seattle, who
offer it at $50,000. There are a number of seams on the property, but I
could examine only one which had been opened near the foot of the
mountain. It is a good seam of bituminous coal, of the same character
with the Kirke coal. I took the following details:

  Sandstone Roof.                     FT.    INS.
  Coal                                 1      6
  Soft Shale                           0      1/4
  Coal                                 0      2
  Soft Clay                            0      1/4
  Coal                                 0      1
  Soft Material, mining.               1      2
  Coal                                 0      6-1/2
  Slate                                0      1/4
  Coal                                 1      0
  Bone                                 0      1/2
  Coal                                 0     10
  Bone                                 0      1/2
  Coal                                 0      5
  Bone                                 0      1/2
  Coal                                 0      7
  Bone                                 0      1
  Coal                                 0      4-1/2
  Bone                                 0      2-1/2
  Coal                                 1      4
  Hard Slate Floor.                   ----------
                 Total                 8 ft.  5-3/4 ins.

_c. The Cedar River Group._--This group consists of the Cedar River
mines, nineteen miles from Seattle by rail, the Renton and Talbot mines,
ten miles, and the Newcastle, eighteen miles. These coals are in the
same river basin, and are all high grade lignites.

  [Sidenote: Cedar River mines.]

The first shipment made from the Cedar River mines was in July, 1884.
There are two good seams here, one of which measures eleven feet. The
outcrop curves from a south to a southwest strike. The dip is 20° toward
the east.

  [Sidenote: Talbot and Renton mines.]

The Talbot and Renton mines, ten miles from Seattle, are on the same
seam, but, owing to faults and other causes, they have not been worked
of late. The seam is seven to nine feet of good coal, resembling the
Newcastle, but has a bad roof, and soon reaches water. The dip is to the
southeast at the grade of 10° to 25°. The outcrop curves as at Cedar
Mountain. This always bodes trouble.

  [Sidenote: Newcastle Mine.]

The principal mine in this basin is the Newcastle, from which more coal
by far has been mined than from any other. Its present annual output is
equaled only by the Carbonado mines, which are pressed to their full
capacity by the Central Pacific Railroad. The Newcastle coal is a high
grade lignite, of firm texture, shining black color, and angular
fracture. It is not a coking coal, but has a wide and established
reputation for grate, stove, and boiler uses. It is the typical
"Seattle" coal, and is sold chiefly in Oregon and California. (To-day,
owing to scarcity, it would bring $25 per ton in Los Angeles). It has
not the heating power of bituminous coal, but it is greatly superior to
many of the lignitic coals. Many difficulties have been met with in the
mining at Newcastle, the most of which seem to have been owing to the
necessity for mining on the down grade, or fall of the coal; and the
mines being now 1,000 feet deep.

I was twice at these mines, but, owing to the just previous destruction
of the hoisting machinery, I could not make an examination.

An additional difficulty was that the mine had taken fire.

  [Sidenote: Cost of mining.]

The cost of mining at Newcastle has ranged from 85 cents to $1.50 per
ton, averaging about $1.10.

  [Sidenote: Large production.]

According to Governor Squire, in 1884, the beds mined at Newcastle were,
beginning at the lowest, 14 feet, 10 feet, and 5 feet in thickness. The
dip is 30° to 40° northward, and the trend north 80° west. Governor
Semple gives the following as the output of the Newcastle mines from
June 30, 1878, to June 30, 1887:

  1879                  127,381
  1880                  128,853
  1881                  149,602
  1882                  158,340
  1883                  218,742
  1884                  149,948
  1885                  149,050
  1886                   85,561
  1887                  140,701
    Total             1,308,178

    Average per year    145,353

"The great falling off in the output for 1886 is attributable mainly to
the labor troubles of that year, the mine being closed for several
months; also the abandonment of the workings from the No. 4 vein."

The slope has now been sunk to a depth of 950 feet, and the mine is
being operated entirely from this level. When this lift is finished, it
is thought that several others of equal depth can be sunk as the basin
is likely to be very deep.

  [Sidenote: Misrepresentation.]

After writing the foregoing, I received a volume issued annually by the
United States Geological Survey on the Mineral Resources of the United
States for 1886; and on page 364 I read with surprise the following
statements in regard to the Newcastle mines of Washington Territory:
"Considerable iron pyrites is present in this coal, which fact, added to
the chaff-like character of the coal for igniting, causes much annoyance
and cost to the mine from fires. Coal, or the mine refuse, piled in
large quantities quickly ignites."

I knew when I was in the Territory that the mine was on fire, as I have
heretofore stated; but I heard no intimation of spontaneous combustion.
In fact, I was told that it was accidental.

I wrote at once to Mr. David T. Day, of the Government Survey, who is
the present editor of this valuable work, asking his authority for such
statements concerning this mine as had never, so far as I knew, been
made before; though the mines have been described, or mentioned, in all
the preceding volumes of the same work, and were mentioned with approval
by Bailey Willis, Goodyear, and all other writers on the resources of
Washington Territory. Moreover, that I had spent weeks in the
neighborhood of the mines, and never heard anything of iron pyrites or
spontaneous combustion.

Mr. Day replied that he had no personal knowledge on the subject; but
that those statements had been furnished him by Mr. James F. Jones, who
is connected with some mining operations along the Northern Pacific

I wrote also to Mr. F. H. Whitworth, of Seattle, calling his attention
to the above statements, and asking what was the truth of the matter. I
received his reply just in time to insert in this Report. I copy below
all that he says on the subject, which puts a different face on the

  [Sidenote: Correction by Mr. Whitworth.]

    "No, I do not think there is any of any consequence of iron pyrite
    in the Newcastle mines. Nor do I consider that the fires in the
    mine originated in the decomposition of the pyrites. The fire in
    the mine originally started in the 'gob,' close to the furnace used
    for ventilation, and where the ashes of the furnace were thrown.
    Therefore, I have always believed that the fire was not spontaneous
    in its origin. The fire originated in the upper water level 'lift.'
    But it was led down into the second and third 'lifts' by carelessly
    breaking through the chain pillar, and thus letting the fire down.
    Several years before the fire started in the mine, and about
    three-quarters of a mile, or a mile, west of the point where it
    started, by careless mining and drawing of pillars, there was a
    'squeeze,' and the mine heated; the result, I think, of the crush;
    but the mine did not fire. While you were out here the mines were in
    danger of firing, and when the cause was not the proximity of the
    present fire--but that, too, I think, was brought on by reckless
    mining. Running their 'breasts' 75 feet wide and more, and leaving
    only skeleton pillars, a 'squeeze,' of course, resulted, and the
    crushing produced the heat, and it did finally fire. The crushing
    being so great that the top work came down to within five or six
    inches of the bottom, you see easily producing crushing sufficient
    to cause fire.

    "But the coal does fire outside spontaneously, or rather the slack
    does, when it is piled in considerable quantities, and after a year
    or more of exposure. The combustion in the slack piles usually
    commences in the firing of the shaley cap rock, which is thrown in
    with the slack as the rock disintegrates, or as that process goes on
    with the 'nigger-heads' thrown into the slack pile. And yet I feel
    satisfied that the slack piles fire when there appears to be almost
    none of the rock or 'nigger-head' in it. Two conditions, I think,
    are required: first, that the slack particles be small, and second,
    that large quantities of water be present. And I have supposed the
    heat and firing was caused by changing of the conditions; small
    particles of slack by disintegration to much smaller particles.

    "And yet it may be possible that there may be sulphur in the form of
    pyrite present in sufficient quantity to do its work. Very
    semi-occasionally, very seldom, I have seen in the sulphur streaks
    some slight indications of pyrite; but generally the sulphur
    streaks, or balls, seem to be composed almost entirely of sand, with
    very little sulphur, and some coaly matter.

    "The coal never has fired on shipboard.

    "I remember that, several years, ago Mr. Howard, of the O. I. Co.,
    had collected and stored in his yard in San Francisco, Cal., in one
    pile, several thousand tons of Newcastle coal, and was carrying it
    for some time in stock, and that he complained that his coal was
    heating, and feared fire. Since then they [have not] stowed in such
    large piles, nor carried stock so long.

    "No, sir; the sulphur that we rooted [out] at Gilman was not in form
    of pyrite, nor have I seen any so far. I do not fear spontaneous
    combustion, because in the Newcastle, when it has occurred, it has
    resulted from carelessness."

This statement from Mr. Whitworth is certainly satisfactory on the main
point, namely, that there is nothing in this suggestion which need
diminish the reputation of the Newcastle coal as a stocking and shipping

In 1884, Mr. Jones (the same man) made a special report to Governor
Squire on the coals of Washington Territory, in which he describes the
Newcastle coal, speaking of it most highly, and saying nothing of
spontaneous combustion. He uses the following language concerning the
Newcastle coal: "The coal is taken from three beds, and is commercially
known as the 'Seattle lignite,' having a bright lustre and good
fracture. It is a good and choice fuel for steam generating and for
domestic use. The condition of the coal adds much to its value."

  [Sidenote: Gilman Mines.]

_d. The Squak Creek, Raging River, and Snoqualmie Group._--These are not
all in the same hydrographic basin, but they are considered together
because they are the coals which will be reached by the Seattle, Lake
Shore and Eastern Railroad. A great outcrop of coal seams occurs in the
valley of Squak Creek in the mountain spur which lies between Squak and
the Newcastle mines. These seams are now being opened by the Seattle
Coal and Iron Company, and are known as "The Gilman Mines."

  [Sidenote: Structure of Squak Mountain.]

The geological structure of the Squak Mountain and its coal seams is
peculiar. With all their local irregularities, the general trend of the
coal-bearing rocks in Washington Territory is north and south; so
determined by the line of the Cascade Mountains, which is the main axis
of elevation, with numerous subordinate and parallel axes. But on Squak
Mountain we find the whole group of rocks and coal seams whirled at
right angles to the general line. In other words, their general
direction is east and west, instead of north and south, and the rocks
lie in regular order against their central axis, dipping northward at a
high angle, and showing no fault, so far as I know, except, possibly, a
vertical fracture somewhere in the mountain, as suggested by a change of
38° in the strike at a point about one mile west of the outcrop on
Squak. If the fracture exists, it does not follow that there is any
serious dislocation. These coal seams are thus carried almost squarely
across the spur from Squak Creek to Coal Creek, or from the Gilman Mines
to the Newcastle Mines.

The simple explanation is, that, in the upheaval of the country, the
Squak Mountain was made by a cross axis of elevation which runs east and
west, or at right angles with the Cascade Mountains. Its metamorphic
core shows itself along the crest of the mountain.

  [Sidenote: Peculiar advantages for mining possessed by the Gilman

The part of the mountain which holds the coal seams is a high spur which
puts off at right angles northward from the crest or backbone, and
continues to Lake Washington, a distance of five miles. At the point
where the spur leaves the backbone, it may be 1,000 or 1,200 feet high,
and it declines gradually to the lake, and then makes a bluff
shore-line. On the east side of the spur on Squak Creek it is steep,
whilst on the west side, next Newcastle, it drops off more gradually.
This difference of grade occasions a great difference in the economy of
mining on the two sides. On the east, or Squak Creek side, the ends of
the seams are boldly presented, showing in diagonal parallel lines
extending from the top of the spur to the creek level, an average
exposure of, say, 900 feet in elevation. Here the entries are being
driven in horizontally near the water level, and the future progress of
the mining will be inward and upward instead of downward and sidewise,
as at Newcastle. The entries will all be on the horizontal line crossing
the seams. The extreme distance, 1,300 feet. The length of the seams on
the company's land is about two miles. Depth below water level,

No shipments have yet been made from Squak Creek, Raging River, or
Snoqualmie Mountain, but active developing work has been in progress
since September last at the Gilman Mines (forty miles from Seattle), and
shipping will begin shortly. A switch of only 600 yards in length is
required from the main line of railway to reach the outcrop of the coal,
and there is every natural advantage for mining.

  [Sidenote: Seattle Coal and Iron Company.]

  [Sidenote: Seven seams.]

  [Sidenote: Details.]

The Seattle Coal and Iron Company own this property, which consists of
1,300 acres underlaid by seven coal seams, five of which will be mined
ultimately, three in the beginning. I was able to examine three seams
which will be mined at first, and give the following details.

Top Seam, No. 4, descending:

  Roof, rich Bituminous Black Slate,
    containing streaks of--          FT.   INS.
    Coal                              2     3
    Bone                              0     1-1/2
    Coal                              0     7
    Slate, variable                   0     0-1/2
    Coal                              0    11
    Clay                              0     0-1/2
    Coal                              2     0
    Clay, variable                    0     1-3/4
    Coal                              1     1
    Clay, mining                      0     3
    Coal                              1     1
                    Total, good       6 ft. 3-1/4 ins.

  [Sidenote: Good coal.]

This is a good seam of coal, five feet six inches of which can be
depended on for shipping. The coal is dull-black in color, and easily
mined. The bottom is soft sandstone. Overlying the roof-slate, is
sandstone. The seam here is said to be one foot thicker than it is at

  [Sidenote: Another good coal seam.]

Seam No. 2 has been uncovered by the diggings on the railroad, and
happens to be at an


unfortunate place for showing the coal. A stump, partly silicified, with
part of its bark lignified, had been taken out of the coal bed, and on
each side of it was a tapering band of "Nigger-head," tapering from
eight inches at the stump to nothing at the distance of five feet six
inches from the stump. Selecting an average place, I got the following
section, descending:

  Good roof of Argilaceous Sandstone.  FT.   INS.
  Bone                                  0     1
  Coal                                  0     6
  Nigger-head, local                    0     5
  Coal                                  1    10
  Coal, sulphurous                      0     3
  Coal                                  1     3
  Bone                                  0     0-1/2
  Coal                                  2     0
  Black slate floor.                 ----------
                    Total               6 ft. 4-1/2 ins.

Judging from this outcrop, which I suspect does not do full justice to
the bed, at least six feet of merchantable lignitic coal may be depended
on from this seam.

  [Sidenote: And another.]

Andrew's bed could only be seen at a point 200 feet above the railroad.
It is nearest to the metamorphic axis of the mountain, and hence is the
bottom seam in the group. It is said to be wanting at Newcastle. The
coal is in two benches, descending:


  Slate roof:         FT.   INS.
      Coal             0     5
      Bone             0     0-1/16
      Coal             0     4
      Bone             0     3
      Coal             1     8
      Pyrite           0     1-1/2
      Coal             1     2
      Slate            0     5
      Coal             4     4
            Total      8 ft. 8-9/16 ins.


                  FT.   INS.
  Fire-clay        0     6
  Coal             1     4
  Clay             0     1
  Coal             0     4
  Clay             0     0-1/2
  Coal             1     1
  Bone             0     1
  Coal             1     9
        Total      4 ft. 8-1/2 ins.

The lower bench would probably be neglected for the present, but the
upper bench is worthy of immediate development. The coal is of good
quality. Perhaps on analysis it would be classed with bituminous coals,
although the woody structure is discernible in places. It burns freely.
The outcrop of this bed is visible lower down the creek in a crushed

  [Sidenote: Large body of valuable coal.]

My visit was rather premature for a proper study of the group; but there
can be no doubt that there is here a large body of valuable coal. The
quantity is estimated by the mining engineer, Mr. Whitworth, at
10,500,000 tons. I saw no other coal beds in the territory so favorably
situated for mining and loading. Of course, coal standing at an angle of
forty degrees cannot be mined so cheaply as if it were horizontal; but
all the mines in Washington Territory must contend with this
disadvantage, and in all cases coming under my observation, except this
one, the mining had to be done on the down grade, which involved much
hoisting, pumping, bad air, etc., which can be avoided at the Gilman

An incidental advantage, also, is that the Squak Valley furnishes any
amount of timber for building, propping, railroad ties, etc., and when
more generally cultivated, a superabundance of agricultural products.
The experience of Newcastle, and the rapid growth of the market,
indicate that these mines may be enlarged in their operations, almost
without limit.

  [Sidenote: Washington Mines.]

Washington Mines, on one of the upper branches of Squak Creek, show the
outcroppings of three seams of lignite coal, dipping S. of W. I did not
visit this place, but was informed that a company, known as the
Washington Coal Company, was engaged in cutting these seams; but I am
not informed as to what are their prospects.

  [Sidenote: Raging River coals.]

The Raging River Coals. Six miles east of Gilman Mines, where the
railroad enters the Raging River Valley, is found another group of coal
seams, older than the Squak coals, and perhaps corresponding in age with
the Franklin and Black Diamond coals, though apparently more bituminous
than they. Raging River is about twelve miles long, and the railroad
first approaches it about midway its length. There are indications of
local metamorphism, if not intrusion, visible in the rocks between Squak
Creek and Raging River, and this is further indicated by an outcrop of
anthracite at the north end of the coal seams, within a mile of the
road. Mr. Whitworth represents this anthracite seam as five feet thick,
but crushed and fragile. Its structure is laminated, and it breaks into
small cubes. He spoke, also, of another seam of anthracite high up on
Raging River, three feet thick, with three inches slate six inches from
the top. He mined in on this for thirty feet without observing any
change. The outcrop of this group of coal seams extends from near the
line of the railroad, up the west side of the valley, parallel with the
river, and about a mile from it, and lying in high hills. This coal
property is also owned by the Seattle Coal and Iron Company. The
principal mining camp is near the head of the valley, ten miles above
Falls City, six miles above the line of railway. Here I saw the coal
seams, which had been uncovered without having been cut into
sufficiently to determine fully their character. One seam is open in a
ravine, half way up the mountain, but most of them near the top, at an
elevation of about 800 feet above the river. There are at least six
seams, and if the one on the mountain side be a different seam, there
are seven. The coal generally is of good quality: bituminous, with
cubical fracture; but its value is greatly diminished by numerous slate
partings, and some of the seams are too thin for profitable mining. The
dip is to the southwest at high angles: about eighty degrees on the
mountain side--less in the top seams.

  [Sidenote: Details.]

The seam on the mountain side showed a total thickness of seven feet
with sandstone over and under; but of this there was only about 2 feet 8
inches of good coal in a body, and the rest coal and slate interleaved.
Near the top of the mountain there are six seams open near a rivulet,
and quite near together. Reaching the top of the mountain, I found the
upper opening (geologically the under opening), No. 1, to contain about
two feet of good black coal, with one slate parting of an inch thick.

No. 2. This seam shows a total thickness of eight feet, but it contains
so many slate partings that I could not estimate the bed highly.

No. 3. Here I saw fifteen inches of coal, with slate partings.

No. 4. An irregular bed, four to seven feet in thickness, crushed, and
probably dislocated, and so slaty as to be of doubtful value.

No. 5. Another crushed and irregular exposure, four to six feet thick.
The coal looks better, and promises to be a good seam when found in its
natural state.

No. 6. A two-foot seam resembling No. 1.

Mr. Whitworth furnished me the following details of an opening near the
camp on Raging River, which was not in a condition to be seen during my
visit, but which has since been gone in upon for about fifteen feet.
From bed-rock, ascending:

                                FT.   INS.
  Clay                           0     2
  Coal, crushed                  0     5
  Black bone                     0     1
  Coal, crushed                  0    11
  Black bone                     0     1
  Coal, hard                     0     6
  Sand rock                      0     3
  Coal, good                     0    10
  Bone                           0     2
  Coal, good                     0     6
  Bone                           0     1-1/2
  Coal, good                     0     6
  Bone                           0     1
  Coal, crushed                  0    36
  Clay and rock (diminishing)    4     6
  Coal, crushed                  3     0
  Strike, north, 76-1/2° east.
  Dip 22° to south.

Mr. Whitworth says that the coal improved as he went in, and he is quite
hopeful about this seam. But his record reads to me like the description
of a slide; still it may not be so.

The show upon the whole, as seen by me, was not satisfactory--and yet
the beds might possibly improve inward; and if the coal should coke
well, it might pay to wash it; as could easily be done at Raging River.

  [Sidenote: Snoqualmie Mountain Coal Group.]

The Snoqualmie Coal Group outcrops some hundreds of feet up the west
side of Snoqualmie Mountain, and about three miles southwest of Hop
Ranch. The outcrop has been traced perhaps one mile. There are five
seams here running north and south with the strike of the mountain
rocks. The seams dip west at an angle of 45°, _i.e._, away from the axis
of the mountain.

  [Sidenote: Details.]

  [Sidenote: Good coking coal.]

Seam No. 3 is the third seam from the bottom. A side entry had been
driven in on the coal for 60 feet, but water now barred the entrance and
prevented a thorough scrutiny of the seam. Its thickness was about 3
feet 6 inches, of which there was a band of lignitic coal of
three-quarters of an inch near the top, and five inches of the same near
the bottom. The weathered outcrop of this, as of the coal-beds of
Washington Territory generally, had a brownish hue, but the fresh
surfaces showed a good black bituminous coal. It lies firm and regular
in its bed. When dug and handled, it goes to small pieces, and may
generally be crushed to powder in the hand; which, of itself, is no bad
sign of a good coking coal.

Seam No. 4, the second seam from the bottom, descending:

                                    FT.   INS.
  Roof, Slate                        2     0
  Bone                               2     0
  Coal                               0     6
  Fine-grained Sandstone, average    2     2
  Natural Coke                       0     6
  Bituminous Shale                   0     6
  Coal                               4     2
  Bottom, Sandstone.

The coal of this seam is soft, black and lustrous. An entry was driven
in 50 feet, which required much propping, the roof being bad. At the end
of this distance we came squarely against a wall of sandstone, showing a
fault. At this point six inches of the top coal is thrown up vertically,
which showed that the seam thus far had dropped, and that the
continuation was to be looked for at a higher level. Mining upward
through the soft material, the coal had been again struck at an
elevation of 16 feet, but not the full thickness of the seam, and not in
its true position; but after following it upward 4 feet more the seam
was found in its natural state.

There seems to be no slate in this seam, but occasionally there is found
in it a ball of "nigger-head," or hard sulphurous matter, from the size
of a man's head down.

  [Sidenote: Also good coking coal.]

An experiment of coking this coal in a small pit at the mouth of this
bank was made by Mr. Kirke and his coal-bank manager, with as
satisfactory results as could be expected from so imperfect a trial. I
found pieces of the coke lying near, and saw better samples which have
been brought from here. While, of course, the coke thus made is not the
best quality, it certainly promises well.

  [Sidenote: Large and valuable bed.]

Seam No. 2, descending:

  Roof, fine-grained Sandstone, under
    which is seven inches Black Slate.  FT.   INS.
  Coal                                   0     6
  Slate                                  2     0
  Coal                                   0     7
  Slate                                  0     4
  Coal                                   0     5
  Slate                                  0     5
  Argillaceous and Ferruginous Rock      1     7
  Coal                                   0     1-1/2
  Bone                                   0     5
  Coal (main bench) of good quality      7     0
  Nigger-head                            0     2
  Coal                                   1     0
  Slate                                  0     1-1/2
  Coal, good                             0     6
  Slate and Clay                         0     7
  Lignite (brown coal)                   2     1
  Bituminous Slate                       1     8
  Coal                                   0       1/2
  Nigger-head                            0     4-1/2
  Clay and Bony Slate                    0     7
  Coal                                   0     1
  Nigger-head                            0     1-1/2
  Coal                                   0       1/16
  Bituminous Slate                       1     2
  Coal                                   0     1
  Slate                                  0     7
  Coal                                   0     7
  Slate and Sandstone bottom.         ---------------
                Total                   23 ft. 1-9/16 in.

  [Sidenote: Another good bed.]

Seam No. 1 is only partially exposed, the workings having caved in; but
enough of the seam was visible to show that it was a bright, soft,
friable, bituminous coal, of good quality, containing some slate and
nigger-head. Its fracture would be called _dicey_ by some geologists,
because it breaks readily into small cubes, even smaller than dice. The
seam is probably about five feet in thickness.

  [Sidenote: Geological relations.]

This group probably corresponds geologically with the Kirke Mines, on
Green River; but, judging by the eye, it is a more bituminous coal and
better suited to coking. The large bed here may correspond with one of
the large beds at the Kirke Mines.

I fear that faults are numerous in the coal rocks of this group, which,
of course, would add to the expense of mining. But if, as expected, it
furnishes a good smelting coke, the field will be extremely valuable
from its contiguity to the magnetic ores of the Cascade Mountains and
the scarcity of coking coals.

This property was for sale when I visited it, and would have been sold
but for a claim of ownership set up by the Northern Pacific Railroad,
which, however, in the opinion of good lawyers, had no foundation.

  [Sidenote: This the bottom group.]

This is the bottom group of the Washington Territory coal field. It will
be seen that, taking the Gilman group, the Raging River group, and the
Snoqualmie group on one line, and the Cedar River, Carbon River, and
Green River group on another line, it may be fairly claimed that there
are at least fifteen working seams of three feet and upward in the
Washington Territory coal field.

_e. The Yakima and Wenatchie Group._ This field lies on the east flank
of the Cascade Mountains, on the waters of the Yakima and its
tributaries, Cle-ellum and Teanaway. It is believed to extend also into
the Wenatchie Valley, although the area here is probably disconnected
from the Yakima area. I purposely refrained from visiting this region,
and for my statements I am indebted chiefly to Bailey Willis, F. H.
Whitworth, Charles Burch, and Mr. Jamieson of the Kirke Mines.

  [Sidenote: Yakima or Roslyn coal field.]

The Yakima area lies north of the Yakima River, near to the Northern
Pacific Railroad, and to the projected line of the Seattle, Lake Shore
and Eastern Railway, and extends about sixty miles east and west, and
six miles north and south. Its dip is gentle, say twelve to twenty
degrees. It holds three coal seams of 2 feet 6 inches, and 5 feet and 5
feet respectively. There is not much evidence of fracture in any part of
the field. The total thickness of the coal-bearing rocks is estimated by
Bailey Willis to be 1,000 feet. This is evidently the lower part of the
coal series, the upper part having been carried away. The best seam is
mined at Roslyn, four miles north of the Northern Pacific Railroad, in
the interest of that railroad.

The seam here furnishes upward of four feet of good coal. The coal is
bituminous, dull black, firm, and free burning. Mr. Jamieson thinks it
will not make good coke. Others, however, think that it will, and these
are supported partially by the laboratory test in Washington City, D. C.
(See Table of Coal Analyses, page 107.) It is called in the table Roslyn

This coal is used chiefly in the locomotives; but the popular demand for
it is very great in the plateau country of East Washington.

  [Sidenote: Coal on the Wenatchie.]

I have no knowledge of the coal on Wenatchie River except what I
obtained from Mr. Burch, who says that there are two seams of coal
exposed in that valley, one of eight feet and one of three feet. The
coal-bearing rocks extend for thirty-five miles up the river, and have a
width of ten miles.

  [Sidenote: Coal under the Great Bend country.]

The coal is reported by Mr. Burch to appear east of the Columbia River,
opposite to the fields just described, and to disappear under the
basalt. If so, here is a resource for the future. Concerning the
importance of this coal field to the Seattle, Lake Shore and Eastern
Railway, I will speak in another connection.

  [Sidenote: The first mining on Bellingham Bay.]

_f. Bellingham Bay, Skagit River, and other Coal Fields._ The first
shipping of coal from Washington Territory was done from the Seahome
Mines, on Bellingham Bay, Puget Sound, about twenty-five miles south of
the Canada line. The mines were very badly managed; they took fire on
several occasions. The coal was of the lignitic grade, but not of the
best quality, and when other mines of better coal were opened the
Bellingham Bay mines were closed. It is reported that coking coal has
been found some distance back from the bay.

  [Sidenote: Coal on Skagit River.]

Coal has also been found on Skagit River, which, I suspect, from a
sample which I saw and from what I heard (some of it), is good, and
possibly might coke well. One of the coal properties is held by A. Ford
and others. The following description is furnished by Mr. Norman B.

It is found about three miles north of the Skagit River, and about five
miles from Sedro. The country is hilly. There are at least six or eight
coal seams, perhaps more. Those examined run from eighteen inches to
thirty inches, and are thought to be clean coal. The seams lie between
sandrocks. The outcrops begin near the level of the valley, and continue
in a series to an altitude of 550 feet above the valley. The highest
outcrops are those of the lowest seams geologically. The strike is north
sixty degrees west. At the foot of the hill, the seams dip forty-five
degrees to the southwest, but the angle becomes steeper on the mountain
side, until finally they are vertical. All the outcrops are within 1,500
feet horizontal distance. Blacksmiths use the coal and pronounce it
equal to Cumberland. It cokes readily in the open fire; burns with a
bright, hot, but small flame, and seems to leave but little ash.

Of course, the thinness of these seams is an objection. There is coal,
also, upon the south side of the river; but there has been but little
development in this field. An analysis of this coal is given in the
table preceding, but I cannot say from what seam the sample was derived.

The following analysis of coal of the Crystal Mine, near Sterling, is
said to have been made by Mr. Wm. G. Tenne, assayer, of Portland,

  Coke                      71.31
  Combustible gases         23.17
  Ash                        5.31
  Moisture                    .21

A very fine showing.

  [Sidenote: Coal south of Puget Sound.]

It has long been known that there are considerable areas of coal south
and southwest of Puget Sound. But they have not been very highly
esteemed, the coals being lignite of not the best quality. There are at
least two seams of seven to twelve feet thickness, and they lie at an
angle of five degrees, with good roof and floor. Some effort is now
making on Skookumchuck and Chehalis rivers to develop these seams.

  [Sidenote: Total shipments of coal from Washington Territory.]

Governor Semple, in his report for 1887, gives as the total shipment for
the year ending June 30, 1887, the amount 525,705 tons. And he gives as
the total output of coal from all the Washington Territory mines from
the beginning of shipments to June 30, 1887:

      MINES.                     TONS.
  Newcastle                   1,308,178
  Franklin                       46,272
  Black Diamond                 148,418
  Renton                         35,015
  Talbot                         10,000
  Cedar River                    64,816
  Carbonado                     402,207
  South Prairie                 139,792
  Wilkeson                       10,372
  Bucoda                          4,550
  Roslyn                         40,987
  Bellingham Bay (estimated)    250,000
  Clallam Bay                       500
                Total         2,461,108

I have now given a sketch of all the coal mines and coal areas of
Washington Territory, and will conclude with a few words on the coal of
Vancouver's Island.

  [Sidenote: Coal on Vancouver's Island.]

_g._ _Coal Seams in British Columbia._ The productive coal field is on
Vancouver's Island, on the east side of the Gulf of Georgia. There are
three mines in operation as given below:


                              SHORT TONS.
  Nanaimo Colliery              112,761
  Wellington Colliery           185,846
  East Wellington Colliery       28,029

This coal is marketed chiefly in California. The coal is lignitic; and
yet it is said to coke well. It is also good stocking coal. The beds
dip from 5° to 30° southward. The cost of transportation to San
Francisco is about the same as from Seattle, and the cost of delivering
on board ship about the same as from the Newcastle mines. The tariff of
75 cents per ton on foreign coal is regarded with satisfaction by the
coal men of Washington Territory. The repeal of this tariff would
inflict a heavy blow upon the mining industry of the Territory.

  [Sidenote: The Iron Ores.]

II. IRON ORE.--The iron ores of Washington Territory consist of Bog ore,
Brown ore (Limonite), some Red, or Specular ore (Hematite), and Magnetic
ore (Magnetite). The bog ore has been found in considerable quantities
underlying the flats bordering Puget Sound, and has been worked in a
furnace on Bellingham Bay. These ores, no doubt, come from the
decomposition of the limonites, the magnetites and the basaltic rocks of
the high lands, especially on the Cascade Mountains. These Bellingham
Bay ores generally have an excess of phosphorus, and yield about 42 per
cent. of metallic iron. Brown ore is reported on the Skagit River,
sufficiently abundant, perhaps, but not containing more than 40 per
cent. metallic iron. I saw a remarkable deposit of brown ore on the
Willamette, near Portland, Oregon. It is a horizontal stratum varying
from 4 to 20 feet in thickness, lying between masses of basalt. It has
been worked in the Oswego furnace, but yielded only about 40 per cent.
metallic iron. I did not see any specular ore in place in Washington
Territory, but saw samples, said to have been brought from near the
Middle Fork of Snoqualmie River.

  [Sidenote: The great magnetic ore beds of Cascade Mountains.]

  [Sidenote: Resembles the Cranberry ore deposits.]

But unquestionably the most important, as well as the largest, are the
magnetic ore beds on the Cascade Mountains. These ores are found 1,000
to 1,500 feet above the chief water-courses on those high ridges and
peaks which make up the Cascade Range along the headwaters of the
Snoqualmie, on the west side of the mountain, and of the Yakima on the
east flank of the mountain. These ores are underlaid by syenite and
quartzite, and overlaid by limestone. The ore itself is found in
conditions similar to that of the Cranberry ore in the Unaka Mountains
of North Carolina; that is, it lies in pockets of various sizes in
hornblendic, porphyritic and epidotic rocks.

  [Sidenote: Guye Mine on Mount Logan.]

I visited two exposures of this ore, one on Mount Logan and the other on
Mount Denny. These are only a mile or two from the line of the railroad.
On Mount Logan there was only one large outcrop of iron-bearing rocks,
but float was seen at numerous points on the mountain. The main exposure
showed an ore-bearing rock, presenting a horizontal front some sixty
feet in length, and forty to fifty feet in height or thickness. At one
place a considerable area in this space seemed to be pure ore. For the
rest, the pockets were smaller, and, of course, the amount of rock
proportionally larger. What is to be found on going in from the surface
can never be told in advance in ore beds of this sort. In working the
great mine of Cranberry, North Carolina, the largest body of ore was
reached 100 to 200 feet from the surface.

This bed of ore is known as The Summit, or Guye Mine. Its elevation is
1,250 feet above the grade of the Lake Shore Railroad, and about 1,000
feet above the small stream at the foot of the mountain. There would be
no difficulty in building an inclined plane from the ore bank to the
small valley below. The snow in winter might interfere with mining.

Ascending the mountain above the main exposure, I found what seemed to
be another level of iron ore 100 feet higher; but possibly it may be the
same bed displaced. Still higher appeared to be a third level of ore,
and higher still, I observed a little float ore at a point nearly 2,000
feet above the grade of the railroad, on what may be called the summit
of Mount Logan, at a point which my barometer made 4,700 feet above
Puget Sound.

  [Sidenote: Denny Mine.]

The Denny Mine is on a different mountain, somewhat farther to the west,
but about the same distance from the railroad. It is reached also by a
narrow valley from which a steep ascent of nearly 1,100 feet is made to
the main exposure, which shows an edge of pure fine-grained magnetite,
about twenty feet thick, with limestone above, and also beneath,
apparently. Fragments of epidote, porphyry and flinty quartzite lay
around. The limestone did not show so large here as on Mount Logan. The
ore dips steeply toward the south, and seemed to encrust the mountain
for a distance of, perhaps, 225 feet, but with a somewhat broken
surface. It then passed with its limestone under quartzite cliffs which
crest the mountain. The bed might have been followed around the
mountain, where it is said to show at a number of places. It seemed to
pass into a matrix of chert.

  [Sidenote: Chair Peak, or Kelly Mine.]

I did not visit the Chair Peak, or Kelly Mine, which is some miles
distant; but I conversed with probably every man who ever saw it, some
half a dozen, including Mr. Whitworth, who made a survey of the
property. It is reported as probably the largest and purest of all the
deposits of magnetic ore, and lies at about the same height on the
mountains. This ore would come out by way of the Middle Fork of

  [Sidenote: Middle Fork Mines.]

I did not visit Guye's other mine, which lies high, perhaps 3,000 feet
above Middle Fork. Mr. Guye represents it as similar in character to the
bed elsewhere, with the addition of some brown and red ore. The other
deposits mentioned I received no description of.

  [Sidenote: All easily reached from Seattle, Lake Shore and Eastern

None of these mines have been developed beyond the uncovering of a face.
As yet there is no furnace for smelting them, and no means provided for
bringing them off the mountains. There is no difficulty about reaching
them with spur railroads and inclined planes. It has occurred to me as
possible that a narrow gauge railroad might reach all of these mines,
without heavy grades, by starting at the highest point of the Lake Shore
road and following the divides from mountain to mountain. This, however,
can only be determined by a special reconnaissance.

  [Sidenote: Cle-ellum ore beds.]

There are large deposits of iron ore also on the east side of the
Cascade Mountains, not far from the crest line, on the waters of the
Cle-ellum River. Three distinct beds are reported. They are all in the
valley of the Cle-ellum River. The upper bed is situated about eight
miles above Cle-ellum Lake, on the main and east fork of the Cle-ellum
River. This bed has been described to me by Mr. Whitworth and Mr. Burch.
The distance from the Northern Pacific Railroad is twenty-five miles,
following the Cle-ellum valley. It is within sixteen miles of the most
distant location made of the Seattle, Lake Shore and Eastern Railway;
and by another route which has been spoken of, this railroad would pass
close to the ore bed. Mr. Whitworth says concerning it: "The ledge is
well defined, and is traced and located about two miles, its course
being nearly north and south. It is apparently from forty to sixty feet
in width, and pitches at about an angle of 20° to the west. The casing
rock is porphyry. The deposit is evidently extensive. The ore appears
rich, is magnetic, and is reported to assay from 56-1/2 to 66 per cent.
I obtained samples of the rock, from which satisfactory tests can be, no
doubt, obtained."

The elevation of the iron ore outcrop is estimated at 3,000 feet, which
would place it nearly on a level with the summit of Snoqualmie Pass; but
it is only about 200 feet above the local water-level.

Mr. Burch says concerning this ore bed, which has now been bought by
Mr. Kirke for the Moss Bay Company, that the strike of the bed is
northeast, whilst the outcrop runs northwest. The ore is in five or more
separate beds, each bed being on an average forty to fifty feet thick,
and the beds separated by rock. The ore can be followed but a short
distance along the strike.

  [Sidenote: Burch's ore bed.]

Burch's iron ore bed approaches the Cle-ellum River about four miles
below the Kirke bed, and extends in a northeast direction to the
headwaters of Boulder Creek, a distance of five miles. The outcrop
crosses three high ridges. The dip is south, at an angle of 45°. The
width is at least twenty feet. A ferruginous limestone lies against the
ore on the south side. The limestone is 300 or 400 feet thick. It seems
to overlie the iron bed. Its outside or top layers are pure blue

A gray sandstone, rather soft, overlies the limestone, and over this
comes a coal-bearing rock in which are dykes of gray iron ore, some of
them standing out of the ground 80 or 100 feet. The magnetic iron ore is
associated with hornblende and quartzite. All rocks dip south. Mr. Burch
says that this ore resembles the Kirke ore, but has some of the
characteristics of hematite. Mr. Guye talks in the same way about his
iron ore on Middle Fork.

At one point, not far from Cle-ellum River, a bed of gray iron ore
crosses the magnetic ore at right angles. This gray ore is not well
understood. It may be an altered copper lode. The main ore bed is more
strongly magnetic near the intersection than it is elsewhere.

I may here remark that Mr. Burch reports considerable float of rich
magnetite on the shores of Lake Chelan.

  [Sidenote: Dudley ore bed.]

I have no description of the Dudley iron ore bed, but it is said to be
large, and of the best quality. Its location is also in the Cle-ellum
valley, between Burch's bed and the lake, and within four or five miles
of the lake. This information I get through a letter written from
Cle-ellum to Mr. Whitworth. I have no personal knowledge of these
Cle-ellum beds.

  [Sidenote: Undoubtedly large beds of steel ores.]

There can be no doubt as to the existence in the Cascade Mountains along
this line of superior iron ore in large quantities, the most of which is
suited to the manufacture of steel.

  [Sidenote: Of superior quality.]

There can be no doubt as to the superior quality of the Snoqualmie iron
ores. Analysis shows that they rank with the best steel ores in their
large percentage of metallic iron and small admixture of deleterious
impurities. Of the following tables, the first gives all the reliable
analyses I could obtain of the ores of the Snoqualmie region of the
Cascade Mountains. Those reported from Mr. Kirke and Mr. Dewey are of
high authority. Those from Mr. Jenner are given in Governor Squire's
report for 1885, and are probably equally reliable.


      Kind. |   Locality.   | Silica.  | Metallic | Sulphur. |Phosphorus.
            |               |          |   Iron.  |          |
            |       {Summit.| 1.30     | 71.17    |  .00-1/2 |  .04
            | Mt.   {  "    | 2.73     | 68.56    |  .02     |  .03-1/2}[1]
  Magnetite.| Logan {  "    | 2.23     | 69.40    |  .00-3/4 |  .03-1/2}
            |       {  "    | 1.87     | 70.18    |  .01-1/4 |  .03 }   [2]
            |       {  "    | 1.67     | 67.00    | 0.05     | 0.02 }
            |               +----------+----------+----------+-----------
            |       Average | 1.96     | 69.26-1/5|  .01-9/16|  .03-1/5
  Bog       |               |          |          |          |
  Ironstone.|       {       | 9.37     | 45.50    | Traces   | 0.08  }
            | Middle{       | 6.03     | 64.50    | 0.05     | ----  }  [2]
  Micaceous.| Fork  {       |22.32     | 59.50    | 0.05     | Trace }
            |(Guye).{       | 3.33     | 67.80    | 0.03     | Trace }
  Hematite. |       {       |11.77     | 60.90    | 0.02     | Trace }
            |               |          |          |          |
            |       { No. 1 | 2.72     | 69.39    | 0.042    | 0.035
            | Denny { No. 2 | 1.30     | 71.17    | 0.005    | 0.039    [3]
  Magnetite.| Mt.   { No. 3 | 2.73     | 68.56    | 0.019    | 0.035
            |       { No. 4 | 4.02     | 67.17    | 0.041    | 0.031
            |       { No. 5 | 2.23     | 69.40    | 0.008    | 0.035
            |       { No. 6 | 1.87     | 70.18    | 0.013    | 0.031
            |               +----------+----------+----------+-----------
            |       Average | 2.47-5/8 | 69.31-1/6| 0.021-1/3| 0.034-1/3
  1. Dewey (chemist).
  2. Reported by Kirke.
  3. Reported by Chas. K. Jenner, from a Philadephia chemist.

  [Sidenote: Proved by analysis to be unsurpassed, if equaled.]

By way of comparison, I next introduce a table of analyses, which begins
with what Mr. Phineas Barnes, in his report on the steel industry of the
United States (1885), gives as a typical steel ore from the best
American mines. The second analysis gives the average of fourteen
analyses of the best Lake Superior steel ores. The third is a typical
steel ore from the Iron Mountain of Missouri. The fourth is the average
of all the analyses of the magnetic ores of the Snoqualmie Valley, which
name I give to them to distinguish them from similar ores on the east
side of the Cascade Mountains, of which I have no analyses:


                    |Metallic Iron.| Sulphur.|Phosphorus.| Silica.
  Typical Steel Ore | 59.24-2/3    |.20-2/3  | .03-2/3   | 6.17-2/3
  Lake Superior     | 68.48        |  ----   | .053      | 2.07
  Iron Mountain     | 65.500       |.016     | .040      | 5.750
  Snoqualmie        | 68.80-8/13   |.023-4/13| .028-2/3  | 2.61-10/13

This showing places the Snoqualmie ores in the front rank of American
steel ores; indeed, it shows a little higher in metallic iron, and a
little lower in phosphorus, than any of the others. These analyses are,
of course, made from the ore proper; _i.e._, without any addition of the
matrix, or gangue-rock, in which the ores are imbedded. With all
magnetites of this type it is only in exceptional spots that much of the
ore can be gotten, free from the enclosing rock. Under ordinary
circumstances something like 20 per cent. of the ore sent to the furnace
will be gangue-rock. There is reason to hope, however, that ere long
there will be a practical method for separating the rock from the ore,
and at the same time getting rid of most of the sulphur. At Cranberry,
N. C., the ore is now roasted and stamped into small bits, and an
experiment has been made of passing the ore through a jigger, whereby
the hornblendic and other enclosing rocks were separated by the
pulsations of the water, as in coal washing.

  [Sidenote: Improved processes.]

The Lackawanna Iron and Coal Company, Pennsylvania, has been separating
the ore from the rock with good results. The same has been done at Crown
Point, N. Y., Lion Mountain, near Plattsburg, N. Y., Negaunee, Mich.,
and Beach Glen, N. J.

The process is really one of concentration, in some respects similar to
that pursued with the refractory ores of the precious and base metals.
The ore is first calcined sufficiently to make it friable. It is then
crushed, by a Blake or other rock-breaker, and is finally sluiced, or
jigged, or both. The aim is to produce a Bessemer concentrate which
would yield 60 per cent. or more metallic iron, and at the same time get
rid of whatever phosphorus might be in the gangue-rock. In the best
experiments the object was more than accomplished. The concentrate
contained 63 per cent. of metallic iron, the middlings 55 per cent., and
the tailings 16 per cent. This experiment was made with a refractory
Adirondack magnetite, which was so intermixed with hornblende, quartz,
mica, etc., that the ore might be described as a hornblendic gneiss,
carrying a large proportion of magnetite. No doubt experience will teach
some way of saving the ore that is now wasted in the tailings.

Thus we may hope to see removed in a short time the only practical
difficulty in working the crystalline magnetites, such as those of
Snoqualmie, and many others.

  [Sidenote: Granite.]

III. GRANITE, LIMESTONE AND MARBLE.--What is here called granite is
really syenite. It is found high on the mountains, associated, as
already intimated, with the magnetic iron ore, and with hard quartzite,
porphyry, epidote, hornblende, and limestone largely marbleized. This
group of rocks forms the core of the Cascade Mountains, and hence
underlies all the coal-bearing rocks to the westward. The group has been
assigned by some geologists to the Archæan age; but it is possible that
they are metamorphosed strata of the Silurian, or some subsequent
period. Some of this syenite has a large proportion of quartz, which
gives it a light appearance; but in other places the hornblende crystals
are of good size and in full proportion, and the feldspar is of the
orthoclase variety, which gives a mixture of three colors, and makes
fully as handsome a stone as the Quincy granite.

Limestone is reported as existing in some of the islands in Puget Sound,
where it is burnt into lime; but I have met with no particular account
of it.

  [Sidenote: Marble and limestone.]

The limestone and marble associated with the iron ore on the Cascade
Mountains has already been alluded to. It is of fine quality, very
abundant, and easily quarried. It will have great value for flux and
commercial lime. It is also beautiful in color, varying from the purest
white to blue, and mixtures of the two colors. In texture it is
sometimes exceedingly fine grained, and in others crystallized into a
true and beautiful marble, which, so far as can be judged by eye, would
be well adapted to both inside and outside finishing and statuary. On
Mount Logan the limestone deposit almost covers the mountain above the
lower line of the iron ore, and is so exposed as to be quarried with the
greatest ease.

The same association of limestone in heavy beds with iron ore seems to
exist also on the Cle-ellum, as mentioned by Mr. Burch. This gentleman
spoke to me, also, of a very beautiful and easily burned limestone in
the Wenatchie Valley. Large beds of limestone also exist in connection
with the precious and base metals, which are next to be described. In
the Colville country limestone seems to abound.

  [Sidenote: Precious metals on Cascade Mountains.]

IV. THE PRECIOUS AND BASE METALS.--In the Cascade Mountains, and in the
mountains north of the plateau country of East Washington, and in the
Coeur d'Alene Mountains, within the border of Idaho, occur numerous
veins bearing gold, silver, copper, lead, sulphur and iron. Discoveries
on Cascade Mountain proper have been made on both sides, chiefly in the
region of the iron ore. Those at the Denny and Chair Peak mines have
been most spoken of. Professor Mason, of the "Rennselaer Polytechnic
Institute," Troy, New York, gives the following assay of two samples
sent from the Chair Peak claim of Kelly, Wilson & Co.:

  1st. Silver      13.9 oz. per ton.
  2d.  Silver      12.4
       Both        14% copper.

Professor Price, of San Francisco, also assayed a sample from the same

  Silver      $3.63 per ton.

  [Sidenote: On Cle-ellum River.]

Metallic veins are found also in connection with iron ore on Cle-ellum
River. Mr. Burch reports a copper and silver lode, and also two lodes of
gold and silver, in this neighborhood. He reports the ores as high
grade, of good, workable thickness, and outcropping for several thousand
feet. There is a gray ore in the same region, the character of which has
not yet been determined. This has already been mentioned as lying close
to the iron ore, and may possibly be metamorphosed chalcopyrite. Mr.
Burch thinks that the silver ores will run from forty to eighty ounces,
while in some spots the richness is very extraordinary. The lead ore in
association ranges from fifteen to forty per cent.

  [Sidenote: Large copper vein in Stevens County.]

The same gentleman, who is a resident of the Okinagane region, reports a
remarkable lode of copper ore running due south across Stevens County,
from the Canada line to the Columbia River. It shows a plain outcrop for
about forty miles. The vein carries both native and gray copper and a
small percentage of silver.

  [Sidenote: Precious metals on Methow River.]

Reports, apparently authentic, are made of numerous other veins of metal
in the same region, particularly in the valley of the Methow River and
the valley of the Okinagane River. The Colville region, beginning fifty
miles north of Spokane Falls, is well known as a rich mining centre.

What I know of these regions I learned from the oral or written
testimony of men who had seen what they described, and some of them
residents of the localities.

The basin of the Methow River has been but little prospected, and
although I gathered many favorable items concerning the mineral deposits
there, I met but one man who had personally examined the country, and he
confirmed the favorable reports. He said the ores were similar to those
on the Okinagane, but were more abundant.

  [Sidenote: The rich mines of Okinagane.]

The Okinagane country is well known, hundreds of men having been at work
there last summer, and some of its mines, particularly the Ruby and
Arlington, having become notable for their richness. Among my informants
are Mr. Burch and Mr. Thomas Lothian, who both reside on the Okinagane
River; and also Mr. J. E. Clayton, mining engineer, who made a
professional report on the country, which was printed in the Spokane
Falls _Review_.

The mining district is on Conconnully Creek (misnamed Salmon River),
which enters Okinagane River from the northwest, about twenty miles from
its mouth. There are two wagon roads to the Conconnully, one from
Spokane Falls, with a branch from Sprague, distance 150 miles, on which
stages ran last summer. Another road starts from Ellensburg on the
Yakima, and is 195 miles long. With an expenditure of a few thousand
dollars on the channel of the Okinagane, the mouth of the Conconnully
could be reached from the Columbia by light-draught steamers, from which
a railway fifteen miles long would reach the mines. Mr. Burch says that
he and his father sounded the river, and also the Columbia, and that
steamers can start at Rock Island Rapids and go to the mouth of the
Conconnully, and, in flush water, can ascend the creek. Mr. Clayton
makes the same statement as to the river. The country rocks in the
mining districts are of the same character as those associated with the
iron ore on Mount Logan and the Denny Mountain--hard metamorphic and
plutonic rocks.

The principal mineral lode is described by Mr. Clayton as "composed of
true quartz gangue carrying the silver ore in disseminated grains of
black sulphurets of silver, with some copper-silver glance, and a
brittle sulphuret, resembling tennantite, giving a dark, red, powdery
streak, approaching the characteristics of dark antimonial ruby silver.
In addition to this is found galena and zinc-blende."

Assays made by Mr. Wm. H. Fuller, of Spokane Falls, gave for first-class
ore from this lode: Silver, $186.45, and gold, $4.50 = $190.95 value per
ton. Second-class ore assayed $34.16 silver and 45 cents gold. Mr.
Slater thinks that one-third of the vein will yield first-class ore. It
is a rich vein, averaging eight feet so far as opened. There are two or
three lodes in the district. Years will be required to ascertain their
limits. But all the indications point to large mining operations in the
Okinagane country as soon as the transportation can be supplied.

My chief authority for the following statements concerning the Colville
region is Mr. Kearney, one of the firm of Kearney Brothers, owners of
the two largest mines of that country, namely, the Old Dominion and the
Daisy. I incorporate some statements also from two articles published in
the Spokane Falls _Review_, one by W. E. Sullivan, and the other by J.
B. Slater.

  [Sidenote: The mines in the Colville region.]

The Colville region is the east end of Stevens County, the part lying
east of the Columbia River and north of Spokane Falls. Its chief town
(500 inhabitants) is called Colville, from the fort of that name which
was situated there. It is ninety-one miles north of Spokane Falls.
Between the two points there is almost a continuous valley of great
productiveness. The mineral region begins at Chewelah, fifty miles north
of Spokane Falls, and continues at least forty miles north of Colville.
Granite, porphyry, and limestone are found here, as in the other
metalliferous regions. In some cases the ores are in slate and quartz;
in others, in granite and porphyry; in still others, limestone. Some of
the ores are iron carbonates, carrying silver, gold, and lead in paying
quantities. In other cases, as at the Old Dominion mines, the ore exists
in the form of a chloride and black sulphate in limestone walls.

Rich mines of argentiferous galena were discovered last summer three or
four miles east of Chewelah, and vigorously developed at numerous
points. Seven miles west of Chewelah shafts were sunk on a rich vein,
three feet wide, of gray copper and silver chloride. The Eagle Mine was
the first discovery, and is the most noted. It is black metal,
containing galena, silver, and gold. Altogether, there are said to be
two hundred mining claims, more or less developed, in the district
around Chewelah.

  [Sidenote: The Old Dominion Mine.]

The mines in the Colville district are very numerous. The Old Dominion
Mine is six miles east of the town. It is on an 8-foot fissure vein,
which assays 150 ounces silver, 25 per cent. galena, and $7.00 gold to
the ton of ore. There are ten mines in the Old Dominion group; and Mr.
Slater states that the $80,000 worth of silver reported as the product
of Washington Territory in 1886, all went from the Old Dominion group.

  [Sidenote: The Daisy Mine.]

The Daisy Mine is twenty-four miles southward from Colville. The vein
here is 25 feet wide, with a streak of ore in it 18 inches wide, which
widens to 11 feet 8 inches at the bottom of the shaft. This shaft is 127
feet deep. Seventy-five feet from the top of the shaft, a tunnel has
been run off horizontally in five feet of ore. The assay reported for
the Daisy ore gives silver 50 ounces, gold $2.00, lead 30 per cent.,
and iron 25 per cent. It is self-fluxing.

  [Sidenote: Young America Company.]

Sixteen miles and a half northward from Colville, near the Columbia
River, a rich discovery of silver-lead ore has been made by the Young
America Consolidated Company. The vein averages five feet, runs
northeast and southwest, and has been shafted through ore to the depth
of 180 feet. A test showed 90 ounces of silver and 40 per cent. of lead.
A number of other openings have been made on the lode.

  [Sidenote: The Little Dalles.]

The Little Dalles, thirty-eight miles north of Colville, is another
neighborhood rich in mineral. The ores are galena and lead carbonate,
with silver. On Bruce Creek, and east of Bruce Creek, twelve miles north
of Colville, are similar veins. A smelter of twenty tons capacity has
been erected at Colville, which affords encouragement to mining; but it
is not satisfactory to the largest owners. Smelting should be done on a
large scale, and in a centre of large business. There can be no doubt
that here, also, will be a region of great activity and large production
as soon as it is connected by rail with Spokane Falls.

I have indicated the mining localities on the map accompanying this
Report as nearly as my information would allow, but only an
approximation is expected.

  [Sidenote: Coeur d'Alene Mines.]

The region that just now is attracting most attention is the Coeur
d'Alene country, because the mines are more developed; and they are more
developed because the miners have better transportation than exists in
the Colville and the other mineral regions. Some thousands of men were
at work last season on the streams entering the lake, particularly on
the South Fork of the Coeur d'Alene River.

At Spokane Falls I was able to get reliable information concerning the
region, and would mention as chief among my authorities Mr. S. S.
Glidden, at one time well known in Alabama as an able iron manufacturer,
now proprietor of the Tiger Mine, on Canyon Creek, which empties into
one branch of Coeur d'Alene River. By reference to the map, the
following description may be readily understood:

The Coeur d'Alene Mountains, River and Lake are in Idaho Territory,
near the line of Washington Territory. The drainage is through Spokane
River into the Columbia. The distance from the nearest point on the lake
to Spokane Falls is twenty-five miles. The Coeur d'Alene River has two
branches, on both of which mining has been done, but most largely on
the South Fork. Previous to 1886, all the mining on this fork was done
at Eagle, Beaver, Delta, Murray, etc., and was chiefly gold placer
mining, which was not particularly remunerative. Placer mining has also
been done on the South Fork; but the chief ores on this branch are
argentiferous galena, with some gold in quartz. A large number of claims
have been worked into since the beginning in 1885, and the increase of
mining population has been going on rapidly. Mr. Glidden thought that
there were ten thousand people last fall in the Coeur d'Alene mining
country. The veins are accessible and very thick, some of them as much
as forty feet. The ores usually carry 40 to 60 per cent. of lead, 5 to
50 ounces of silver, and often about $3.00 in gold to the ton of ore.
The veins are true fissures, and strike across the country rocks, which
are principally porphyry and quartzite. The strike of the main veins
runs parallel to the river, and at a distance of two to six miles from
it. There are many cross gulches which cut the veins at right angles,
and thus present vertical faces which offer the best facilities for
prospecting and for mining.

The veins have been opened at so many places as to put beyond doubt
their continuity on long lines, and their great abundance. In fact, the
indications point to a development resembling that made near Leadville.

  [Sidenote: The large tonnage from and to the mines.]

Some of the ore must be concentrated, and much of it must be shipped in
bulk to the reduction works. Such tonnage is considered the best
possible for a railroad. The ore can be carried in any kind of car, and
is not subject to theft or any sort of damage; and yet its precious
character enables it to bear higher freight rates than pig-iron. There
are no fluxes in the country outside of the ore itself, and it will be
more economical to carry the ore out than to bring in fluxes. The
smelting of the ores on the ground would be further embarrassed by the
difficulty in getting fuel. The timber is in patches, and often
inaccessible; hence charcoal would be costly, and there is no coke to be
gotten anywhere near. The smelting of mixed ores of this sort is a very
complicated process, requiring quite a number of different elements, and
can be most economically conducted on a large scale, and by the mixture
of various different ores. Hence the advantage of having these works at
some great centre where ores of many kinds may be brought. In the
establishment of such a centre, of course, reference should be had to
commercial and trading facilities. A large mining community in one
place and a large commercial and manufacturing community in another,
involves large transportation of crude materials, and of manufactured
products, of food, and of passengers.

As yet, the Coeur d'Alene mining is in its early infancy. Means of
transportation are partially furnished by means of water and short
narrow-gauge railroads, but they are insufficient. Shipments now are
small, but they will rapidly increase, and Mr. Glidden thinks that in
three years 2,000 tons of ore will come out _daily_, and as many tons of
freight go in--certainly a splendid outlook for business.

In _concluding_, as I have now done, the general statement in regard to
the physical resources of Washington Territory, I would remark, that all
the facts stated heretofore have a close relation to the interests of
the Seattle, Lake Shore and Eastern Railway and its friends, and that
the remainder of this report will consist in practical applications of
the facts to the railroad and personal interests involved.




  [Sidenote: Commercial and manufacturing advantages.]

  [Sidenote: Good climate.]

Concerning this city of 15,000 to 16,000 inhabitants, I need not repeat
what has been so well said in the reports of Governor Squire, and of
United States officers who have examined and reported to the Government
with regard to this location--notably, Gen. Isaac I. Stephens, Gen.
George B. McClellan, Gen. Nelson A. Miles, and others; also by the
Seattle Chamber of Commerce. Its location, its harbor, its people, its
commerce and manufactures, its solid and rapid growth, and its local
relation to all the great natural resources of the Territory, give to
Seattle advantages which cannot be equaled by any other port on the
Sound. Its climate, as to temperature, both in winter and summer, is
remarkable. It is pleasantly cool in summer, and in winter rarely
severe. Its only drawback is an excess of moisture for perhaps four
months of the winter season. But this is preferable to the violent
storms and deep snows and extreme cold to which the Eastern plains and
the upper Mississippi country are subject, and which sometimes attack
New York and the New England States. On Puget Sound there are no
blizzards nor cyclones, and rarely so much as an inch of snow. The
medical testimonies give a very favorable hill of health.

The industries of city and country are prosecuted with less interruption
from weather than in any of the States east of the Rocky Mountains. The
annual rainfall is not greater, not so great, indeed, as in some parts
of the Atlantic seaboard. It is not so well distributed among the months
as it is eastward; but outdoor work rarely stops on Puget Sound.

  [Sidenote: Good population.]

  [Sidenote: High civilization.]

The population of Seattle struck me as exceedingly good. Her controlling
classes are men of character, intelligence and substance. The appearance
of the stores, the streets, the offices, and factories, would do credit
to an old city. Water, electric lights, street railways, good fire
companies, well organized police, handsome residences, churches,
schools--all attest the progress of her civilization. Her wharves and
railroad depots are crowded with business. The special pride of the city
seems to be her schools, public and private. Her large and handsome
school buildings seem purposely to have been placed in the most
prominent positions. Her public school system is well organized and
supported. The University of the Territory is located here, and in full
operation. These things, considered together, augur most favorably for
the future of this young city.

  [Sidenote: Railroad lines.]

Her growth will be rapidly accelerated by the extension of her
railroads. Besides her coal roads, she will soon be practically the
connecting point of certainly two, and perhaps three, transcontinental
railroad lines. She now has railroad connection with the Northern
Pacific, and will shortly be connected with the Canadian Pacific by the
West Coast road. But the road that will do most for Seattle, indeed, the
road which of itself would make a city at its Sound terminus, is the
Seattle, Lake Shore and Eastern Railroad. This will be true if the road
never crosses the limits of Washington Territory; but no doubt it will
ultimately cross the continent, or at least have close transcontinental

When these roads are thus extended, they will bring vast quantities of
lumber, and of mineral and agricultural products, and carry in exchange
foreign and domestic products for the supply of the rural and mining
population, to say nothing of the great Eastern trade. Her coastwise and
foreign trade have already been discussed.

  [Sidenote: The chief ship-building centre.]

Puget Sound must also become the chief ship-building centre of the
continent, and the possession by Seattle of the great fresh-water lakes
so close to the Sound, and the fact that here will be the point where
the Bessemer pig-iron and its products will be manufactured, will give
this point advantage over all others on the Sound. Seattle will build
ships for England, New England, South America, Asia, and the Islands of
the Ocean; and just here will first be seen the dawning of the new day
which will come to our American merchant marine, of late so depressed.
And the Government itself must sooner or later establish on Lake
Washington a navy-yard where ships can be built of the best material at
minimum cost; and where her ships out of commission can lie landlocked,
secure from the teredo and the corroding effects of sea-water, and can
at once get rid of their barnacles.

  [Sidenote: Seattle better located than San Francisco.]

Seattle can have no rival on the Pacific Coast except San Francisco,
which has the only good harbor and entrance outside of Puget Sound, but
which has no coal, nor iron, nor timber, and whose back-country does
not equal the Snoqualmie valley of East Washington for agricultural and
mineral capabilities.


  [Sidenote: Unrivalled terminal property.]

The city and suburban property which the railroad has secured is
singularly valuable, and will afford every facility for city and foreign
business. It is correctly described in the documents of the company. No
future road can acquire such facilities. They approach a monopoly of
great value.


  [Sidenote: But two entrances by land.]

  [Sidenote: Superiority of the northern suburbs.]

There can be practically but two railroad entrances to Seattle, one from
the south, and the other from the north, owing to the bluff ground on
which the city is built, with Puget Sound in front and Lake Washington
in the rear. The roads from the existing coal mines and from the
Northern Pacific enter from the south; the Lake Shore road enters from
the north. Suburban improvements will no doubt be extended both north
and south. But it seemed to me that for residences and amusements the
northern end has the advantage, as the high lands are more convenient
to the railroad, and command fine views of those beautiful lakes on the
east, and of the Sound on the west. Here will be the pleasant drives,
the place for sailing, rowing and swimming; for open-air games, picnics,
etc. On the east side of Lake Washington will be vegetable and fruit
gardens and dairies, whose products will reach the city by this
railroad; to all of which have been added the powerful influence of the
Moss Bay operations.

The logging business begins in sight of the city, and a number of
logging camps were already in operation along the first twenty miles of
the railroad. After the loggers, follow the farmers. Already a
surprising number of people have established homes in this direction.

  [Sidenote: Factories of the future.]

  [Sidenote: Ship canal.]

Near the Sound and a little distance from the city will be great
saw-mills, grain elevators, canneries, and, in time, fish-oil and
fertilizer mills, tanneries, smelting furnaces, sulphuric acid and other
chemical works. And here will be the ship canal connecting the lakes
with the Sound, and the shipyards of the future.



  [Sidenote: Superiority of the timber on the Seattle, Lake Shore and
  Eastern Railway.]

The great lumber interest will have a larger and richer field on the
Seattle, Lake Shore and Eastern Railroad than on any other through
line in Washington Territory. On the line of the Northern Pacific
Railroad the timber is abundant, but too small for the mill, except in a
very few spots. The other roads show but little left close by, and the
trees never had the size of those of Snoqualmie Valley. The West Coast
road, which will be tributary to the Lake Shore Railroad, will pass
through good forests; but, according to my information, the forests on
the line of the Lake Shore road are the very best in Washington

The forest of mill timber beginning in sight of Seattle, continues with
some intermissions to the top of the Cascade Mountains. It increases in
size and quantity to a point far up on the mountain side, and the trees
continue of good size all the way to the top. Crossing the Cascade
Mountains, on the east side the trees are quite numerous, but smaller
than on the west side, though some of them can be sawed. Continuing
eastward, the trees get fewer and smaller, and change from fir to
ordinary yellow and bull pine. In the plateau country of the Great Bend
there are only scattered groups of stunted trees to be seen, and,
excepting a few skirts along the bluffs of the Columbia, no forests of
mill timber are to be met with until after passing the Idaho line.

  [Sidenote: The forests described.]

I will now review this timber belt with more particularity. After
leaving Seattle, there is a somewhat elevated country between the lakes
and Puget Sound, which is largely covered with mill timber of medium
size. Perhaps two feet and a half would be about the average diameter of
the logs. Here, as everywhere, the principal timber, and that most cut
and valued, are the Douglas fir and the white cedar.

  [Sidenote: Forests of Raging River.]

Continuing along Lake Samamish, and up Squak Creek, these forests
continue on both sides at some distance off. A large body of moderately
sized timber runs off toward the northeast, covering the hills which lie
in front of the mountain range. Passing the Gilman mines, we meet but
little large timber until we enter the valley of Raging River. Here
there is an almost unbroken forest of splendid timber, extending from
near the mouth as far up as I went, namely, ten miles from the mouth.
The mill timber here would average from six to ten inches more in
diameter than that we passed near Lake Washington; and there seemed to
be a vast body of it in this valley. As far up on the hill or mountain
side as I went, or could see, the trees retain their large size.

At the upper coal mines I found this to be the case to the mountain top,
800 or 900 feet above the river. The trees were not only large, and
thick on the ground, but extremely tall and free from knots. I was told
that the heavy forest continued a considerable distance above the upper
coal mines.

  [Sidenote: Forests near Hop Ranch.]

  [Sidenote: Superior to the Long Leaf forests of the Southern States and
  of the Mississippi Bottom.]

In the Snoqualmie Valley proper are to be found the largest forests and
the largest trees. The farmers and hop-growers have destroyed thousands
of acres of the finest timber trees on the continent, but many, many
thousand acres still remain unbroken. Between Falls City and Hop Ranch
the wagon road passed through two or three miles of this magnificent
timber. Turning from the road, I ascended the Snoqualmie Mountain, and
all the way up to the coal openings I traveled in the densest forest of
the largest trees I had ever seen. Passing the cleared country about Hop
Ranch, I again plunged into one of these monstrous forests, and traveled
three or four miles through it without a break. The sun never touches
the earth in these forests. The trees rise to the height of 250 feet or
upward, and lock their branches together far overhead, shutting out the
sunlight and awing the traveler. Their trunks seem to stand absolutely
straight and plumb from the ground to the top. I had studied the
long-leafed pine forests of Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi. I had
traveled for a hundred miles through that marvelous forest on the Yazoo
Delta, where it seemed to me that Nature had done her utmost in covering
the ground with vast and lofty trees; but here in the Snoqualmie valley
I traveled through forests that for the size, height, and number of
trees to the acre, as much exceeded the forests of the Yazoo bottom as
the latter exceeded all other forests I had ever seen. The Snoqualmie
forest also exceeds all others I have known in the immense quantity of
its fallen timber, which renders locomotion off of the trails extremely
slow and difficult. The railroad ascends the South Fork of the
Snoqualmie. I did not go up the Middle Fork, but was told that the
timber is fine in that valley also.

  [Sidenote: Trees ten feet in diameter.]

  [Sidenote: Average nearly five feet in diameter and 250 feet high.]

The little Salal Prairie, five or six miles long, and six miles from Hop
Ranch, breaks the continuity of the forests, but with that exception, it
continues to the pass of the mountain. As to the size of the trees, I
feel sure that I saw hundreds that would average ten feet in diameter. I
measured two that were by no means singular, and one gave a
circumference of thirty-three feet (equal to eleven feet diameter), and
the other not much less. There is no doubt that many of these trees are
300 feet in height. I think it likely that the average height of the
mill timber on the line of the road from Raging River, for two-thirds of
the way up the main mountain (a distance of over twenty-five miles), is
250 feet, and 150 feet of this clear of limbs, and hence of knots. And I
think that the average diameter of the butt-cuts of the mill timber
would be near five feet. I found my greatest difficulty in estimating by
the eye the average number of trees to an acre. I can only say that I
not only never saw so many, but I never conceived it possible for such a
number of large trees to be supported by the soil of an acre of ground.
It was not unusual to see many trees of six to eight feet in diameter
standing within ten feet of each other. I knew, of course, that there
were single trees in California, and elsewhere, larger than any single
specimens to be found here, but I did not know before going to
Washington Territory that such forests as these were to be found on the
face of the earth.

  [Sidenote: Lumber product per acre.]

I shall leave to men better versed in the details of the lumber business
than I to estimate the quantity of sawed lumber which would be yielded
by an acre of such timber, and by the many thousands of acres which lie
on, or near, the line of this railroad. Somebody published that the
average yield of the Washington Territory forests would be 30,000 feet
to the acre, and this may be, because there is much small and scattered
timber; but if this amount be multiplied by six, it would not do justice
to the forests I saw in the Snoqualmie valley. There are single trees
that would make 30,000 feet of lumber. It is fortunate that the fir and
cedar timber are preferred by the lumbermen, as these varieties
constitute the larger portion of the forest. Undoubtedly the hemlock
will all be wanted at an early day, and so of the larch and the less
abundant trees, both evergreen and deciduous.

The bearing of these facts on the interests of the railroad are obvious.
Such bodies of timber, standing close to the road for a distance of
eighty miles, would of itself guarantee the success of the road for a
generation to come.

And there is everything favorable in the position of the timber with
reference to the track, especially if the track, in ascending the
mountain, can be kept near the river. It is to be hoped that the timber
along the right of way will be saved for sawing. It would be no small
item in paying for the road.

There will promptly spring up along the whole line both logging-camps
and saw-mills. Besides those already in operation, I heard of some
large new enterprises projected. The demand for lumber is so insatiable,
and the profits of the business so good, that an extensive fresh field
like this will be entered with avidity by an army of lumbermen.


  [Sidenote: Agricultural freights.]

The agricultural interest is not so large at present on the west side of
the Cascade Range, as the timber, coal and iron interests, but it is
growing, and will become exceedingly important. East of the Cascade
Mountains this will be the chief railroad interest in the beginning,
though ultimately it will be surpassed by the tonnage of the mines. I
have heretofore described the soils and vegetable products of West
Washington, but would say specially with regard to the belt we are
considering, that it is destined to be a fine agricultural region. The
bottom lands of Squak Creek, and of Snoqualmie River, including all its
branches and tributaries, are extremely fertile, and suited to produce
the largest crops of grass, oats, barley, hops, and roots of almost
every sort, besides most of the overground vegetables.

  [Sidenote: Produce of Hop Ranch.]

At my request, Mr. Wilson, the manager, and one of the owners of the Hop
Ranch, furnished me the following written statement concerning that
estate, which, although larger than any other on the route, is not
richer than many other places of smaller size.


     SNOQUALMIE, W. T., Nov. 3, 1887.


     _Dear Sir_: In response to your request, I make the following
     memoranda. Our Hop Farm consists of 1,500 acres of rich alluvial
     soil; 300 acres in hops, which produce from 1,800 to 2,000 pounds
     per acre. We also raise 150 acres of oats, producing sixty to
     seventy-five bushels per acre. From 100 to 150 acres in hay,
     producing about three tons to the acre. Also large quantities of
     vegetables, such as potatoes, carrots, turnips and onions. All
     kinds of root vegetables are prolific except sweet potatoes.
     Fruits, such as apples, pears, prunes, plums, and berries of all
     kinds, are in abundance. Last year we had over 5,000 bushels of


     At present we ship in about 500 tons per year of merchandise and
     supplies, and ship out, in the way of hops and other things, from
     400 to 500 tons per year. This we could double if we had
     railroad facilities for shipping. We employ during the winter--that
     is, in November, December and January--about forty men; the rest of
     the year, from 75 to 1,200 men and women. The keeping up of this
     supply of labor, which all comes from Seattle, would be quite an
     item to the traffic of a railroad. I presume you know that where
     there are a large number of people employed, they are continually
     coming and going. In speaking with a railroad contractor the other
     day, he told me that in order to keep 500 men at work, he had to
     keep 1,500 on the road. This will also be an important item when
     the mines are working above here. There are a great many items of
     interest to which I might call your attention, but I will confine
     myself to the above at present.

     Yours, very respectfully,

     T. G. WILSON,

  [Sidenote: Farming, fruit and grazing lands.]

Besides the bottom lands, there are large areas of what might be called
table-lands, north and northeast of the lakes, which are top-dressed
with glacial drift, but which will be well adapted to the crops of the
country, and especially to fruits. And besides the table-lands, the
smaller mountains are generally adapted to agriculture, and especially
to grazing. My impression, as heretofore stated, is that, ultimately,
West Washington will become a great grazing region, though it is
generally supposed that East Washington is to be the chief cattle
country. But the mild and equable climate, and the abundance of rain,
ensures abundant forage summer and winter in West Washington. This will
be important for the feeding of cities farther south, as well as for
sending canned and refrigerator beef far and wide over the Pacific
Ocean. The growth of vegetables, especially of root crops, is something
phenomenal on both sides of the Cascade Mountains, and will furnish a
large item of commerce, as is shown already by the large shipments of
potatoes from Seattle, and the multiplication of canneries.

  [Sidenote: Hops, barley and beer.]

The hop interest is a large one, but the low prices of the last year or
two have checked the progress of this industry. Breweries have already
been established at Seattle, and elsewhere on Puget Sound, and, as the
chief materials for beer (barley and hops) are produced here so cheaply
and abundantly, we may expect Puget Sound beer to become quite a large
item of commerce.

The Snoqualmie and Squak valleys have as yet but a scattered
agricultural population, but ultimately farms will be opened along all
the streams, and even high up on the Cascade Mountains.

  [Sidenote: The two great railroads.]

On the east side of the Cascade Mountains the Seattle, Lake Shore and
Eastern Railway will closely parallel the Northern Pacific Railroad for
a short distance in the Yakima River valley, but will probably leave it
soon after entering the most productive part. The route, however, may be
varied to suit circumstances, and as to this point no doubt would be if
the talk of making Ellensburg the State capital should become serious.
The remark may here be thrown in that this meeting of the two railroads
in the Yakima valley will be no disadvantage to the Seattle road, as the
distance to Puget Sound is about the same, and the incidental advantages
are in favor of Seattle.

  [Sidenote: The Great Bend country.]

  [Sidenote: Douglas County.]

Crossing the Columbia River, the railway will enter the great plateau
which has been so fully described, and if the passage should be made at
Rock Island Rapids, it will cross the plateau at its widest part.
Nothing more need be said as to the great agricultural capabilities of
the plateau country. The Great Bend, or northern limb of the plateau, is
more extensive than the southern division, but it is a much less
settled country, owing partly to want of transportation, and partly to
want of water. This scarcity of water in Douglas County was formerly
thought to be incurable without a resort to artesian wells; but
experiment has shown that wells of good water can be obtained at
moderate depths, as I was informed by Mr. Smith, a resident of the
county, and by Mr. Nash, the lawyer, who owns property there. The
population and, consequently, the business of this large county is
limited at present, but it has a large body of good land in it, which
will attract settlers before long. Its soil is of the same character as
that of other parts of the plateau; but the general impression seemed to
be that it was not quite equal to the land of the Snake River Basin, or
to the adjoining county of Lincoln, owing in part to a larger proportion
of rough land. I do not, however, consider this question by any means as
settled. The best area for wheat is supposed to be that which borders on
Lincoln County. If the route for the Seattle railway which is preferred
by Mr. Mohr, should be adopted, it would pass across the northern part
of the county, by many persons considered the best part, and leave the
great body of the county out of reach to the southward.

  [Sidenote: Lincoln County.]

Lincoln County, through the length of which the road must pass, is
universally admitted to be among the best agricultural counties on the
plateau. It is also settling up rapidly, and has become a large producer
of wheat, even at the disadvantage of a long haul in wagons. Mr. Curtis,
who buys much of the Lincoln County wheat for his mill at Spokane Falls,
says that the average yield of wheat is twenty-five bushels per acre,
though in 1886 (the year of failure) it fell to sixteen and one-half
bushels. Captain McGowan, of Lincoln County, also gave twenty-five
bushels as the average crop, and said this would hold good for the whole
period since the settlement of the county, including the bad year 1886.

  [Sidenote: Spokane County.]

  [Sidenote: Price of farming lands.]

By reference of the official map showing the wheat areas, it will be
seen that the Seattle railway passes through the middle of these areas
in both Lincoln and Spokane counties. The testimony was entirely
favorable in regard to horticultural and pomological products, as well
as to the agricultural, in the strict sense. The population of the three
counties, Douglas, Lincoln and Spokane, was put by Governor Semple at
nearly 18,000; about 17,000 of which was in Lincoln and Spokane. Much
land has been bought with a view to settlement as well as speculation,
and this would be occupied and cultivated _pari passu_ with the progress
of the railroad, and there yet remains much good land which can be
bought at low prices, say from one dollar to five dollars an acre, and
will attract settlers. Farming lands here will have market at the mines
north of the Columbia River, at Spokane Falls, where there will be a
large city, as well as large mills, and at Seattle, where there will be
a large demand not only for the city, but for shipping.

  [Sidenote: Tonnage.]

No reliable estimates can now be made as to what business this Great
Bend country will furnish ten to twenty years hence. We have only this
to guide us, namely, that the part of the plateau which lies south of
the Northern Pacific Railroad now furnishes 400,000 tons of wheat for
transportation annually, besides other freight and passengers; and it
has not reached one-half of its producing capacity. Mr. Mohr estimates
the income from mail and express as one-fifth the income from freight,
and passenger fares as one-quarter of the whole amount from tonnage.
Though the country lying north of the Northern Pacific Railroad is much
larger in area than that which lies south of it, it may not average as
well, and cannot all be controlled by one railroad; but it will
certainly furnish large tonnage; much more than is common in
agricultural regions.

At present the product of wheat in this region is estimated at 100,000
bushels, but this amount would probably be doubled the first year after
the railroad comes, and rapidly increased afterward. Much of the mining
business already crosses this territory, and will, no doubt, greatly


  [Sidenote: The Seattle railway passes five coal fields.]

I have, under the head of Economic Geology, described so fully the coal
deposits of Washington Territory, especially the beds along the line of
the Seattle, Lake Shore and Eastern Railway, that it remains only to
show the application of these facts to the interests of this railway.
The road passes five, if not six, separate coal fields between Seattle
and the Columbia River, namely, the Squak or Gilman mines, 40 miles from
Seattle; the Washington mines, 43 miles; the Raging River, 46 to 50
miles; the Snoqualmie Mountain, 56 miles; the Yakima (or Roslyn), 75
miles; and perhaps the Wenatchie, 140 miles.

So far as appears at present, the Seattle railway will have a monopoly
of all these fields except the Yakima or Roslyn. This it will share
with the Northern Pacific; but it will have exclusive control of the
market between the Yakima and Spokane Falls, which will be almost wholly
dependent upon coal for fuel. Also, it will furnish whatever of this
coal may be wanted by the mining country north of the Columbia. And in
the Spokane Falls market it will have the advantage of bringing the coal
by a route fifty miles shorter.

The coal on the west side of the Cascade Mountains will go to Seattle
for consumption and shipment, except so much as may be wanted for iron
making, and other manufacturing purposes along the line of the road.
Coke will be in demand for furnaces, foundries, engines, etc., in
Seattle, Spokane Falls, and many other places. But its largest
consumption will be in iron furnaces which will be erected for smelting
the ores of the Cascade Mountains.

  [Sidenote: Largest shipments from the Gilman Mines.]

  [Sidenote: Superior mining advantages of the Gilman Mines.]

The largest shipments will be from the Gilman Mines for domestic and
steam-boiler purposes. The coal must, of course, come in competition
with other coals which are mined within the basin of Puget Sound, but it
has an advantage over all competitors in the ease, safety, and cheapness
with which it can be mined. This will not, of course, be realized for
the first few months whilst driving the entries, but when the mines
shall have been fully opened I think it will be without rival in the
cost of production. This will be evident from the following report made
to me by Mr. Whitworth, showing the disadvantages in the mode of working
the other mines of the Territory. The terrible explosion which has
lately occurred in the deep mines of Vancouver's Island shows that the
Canadians are also working at a disadvantage.


  [Sidenote: Mr. Whitworth's testimony.]

    "At Cedar River the coal is all hoisted from a slope, and the
    gangways run at right angles to the slope, and the 'brests' at right
    angles to the gangways, or parallel to the slope, or nearly so. The
    angle of the pitch is about 18°. And the cars are run up to the
    'brests' to the working face of the coal, and coal shoveled into the
    cars. A movable windlass or drum allows the loaded car to haul the
    empty one up to face of coal.

    "At Black Diamond the coal is all hoisted from a slope; gangways at
    right angles to slope, and 'brests' at right angles to gangways, and
    parallel to slope. This pitch is a little steeper, about 20° or 22°,
    but not sufficiently steep for the coal to run. Therefore it has to
    be shoveled down the slope of the 'brest,' or the 'brest' floor
    temporarily ironed; and is loaded into car from 'brest' chute.

    "Franklyn has both systems, hoisting up a slope, and working on a
    water-level gangway. They have two slopes, one outside and one
    inside. This pitch is 45° and more. Gangways run on the strike of
    veins, and 'brests' up the pitch. Coal runs freely on the floor of

    "What it costs now to mine at Newcastle I do not know. The cost of
    coal above the water-level gangway put into the railroad cars varies
    from 85 cents (one month only) to $1.50 per ton; $1.10 about the
    average. For the first six months I do not think we (at Gilman) can
    calculate less than $1.25 per ton.

    "The veins which they work or have worked at Newcastle are No.
    4--No. 2, as it is called, which is really Nos. 1 and 2 united--and
    Bagley vein. No. 4 is worked out on two lifts, the water level, and
    the one below. The third lift they have not cross-cut to it, as the
    slope is on No. 2. No. 2 is almost closed on third lift east of Coal
    Creek. First two lifts, of course, are worked out. And west of Coal
    Creek the working has progressed nearly to the boundary of their
    land, and passed the division of the vein into Parts 1 and 2; so
    that they are getting but little coal out of it. But most of the
    coal comes from Bagley. Bagley is never worked, or but slightly,
    when the others are furnishing plenty of coal. Bagley there consists
    of two portions of about seven feet each, with one to two feet of
    rock and slate between. In the lower bench there is about four or
    four and a half feet of good coal; the rest is bony. And in the
    upper bench there is from three to four feet of good coal, and the
    balance bony. When they are pressed for coal there is a strong
    temptation to mine and ship the entire fourteen feet of coal, and
    bony coal, as it all looks quite well. This temptation, I know,
    under the old administration, was sometimes yielded to, and I have
    supposed such was the case now. In fact, in getting that coal some
    time since for home use, I have several times seen the straight
    Bagley from top to bottom in the ton. No. 2. The united vein at its
    best is ten and a half feet, between splendid walls, about one and a
    half inch mining on the bottom, and a parting near the centre one
    inch thick. That never disappeared, but increased both ways until
    the veins were finally separated. No. 2 separate was about five feet
    clean, at least with no permanent partings. No. 1, about four and a
    half feet of coal with a three-inch streak of fine clay eighteen
    inches from the top, the balance clean."

So much from Mr. Whitworth.

  [Sidenote: Cost of mining coal.]

Governor Semple puts the prime cost of the coal of the Puget Sound basin
generally at from $2.00 to $2.30 per ton, delivered at tide-water; which
is, I suspect, below the fact. James F. Jones, in charge of mines on the
Northern Pacific Railroad in the Puget Sound basin, reports the cost per
ton at the mines delivered on the cars as ranging from $1.00 to $2.50
per ton, averaging $1.75.

The minimum of cost is reached when the seams are of good thickness and
comparatively free from slate, and can be entered on the end by a level
entry above water and be mined upward; to which may be added natural
pitch enough in the seams for the coal to be self-loading; that is, to
run by gravity from the upper gangways to the cars on the main entry.
And to these conditions may be added a number of different parallel
seams close together with their bluff ends all coming up to a line in
the most convenient way for entry and delivery. It is rarely the case
that such an assemblage of favorable conditions can be found, and where
they exist the successful future of the property is absolutely assured.

  [Sidenote: Cost at Gilman Mines.]

In my opinion, the Gilman coal seams combine all the advantages above
mentioned, and if allowed ordinary rates of transportation, can always
be mined at a profit. As long as the Newcastle seams could be worked
above water-level the average cost per ton was $1.10, but they never had
the same advantages there as at Gilman, and most of their mining has
been downward. $1.00 per ton is certainly high enough for Gilman after
the entries are driven in sufficiently for large operations. If Mr.
Whitworth succeeds in putting out the coal at $1.25 for the first six
months, as he thinks he can, there need be no fear as to the future.

  [Sidenote: Prices of coal.]

The selling price of coal on Puget Sound has ranged from $3.00 to $5.00
a long ton in former years, averaging $4.00--the price being the same
for the product of all the different mines. Mr. Whitworth reports the
price this winter at $6.50 a ton for all (including Newcastle), except
Cedar River, which is $5.00. The distances from Puget Sound to Portland
and to San Francisco, the principal markets, are: to San Francisco,
between 800 and 900 miles by water; to Portland, 450 by water, and 150
by rail. There is now rail connection all the way to San Francisco. The
average cost of sending coal to San Francisco, either from Puget Sound
or Vancouver's Island, is $2.00. The usual price in San Francisco and
Portland has been from $4.25 to $6.00 for coarse, and from $2.75 to
$3.75 for small. On the 1st of February, 1888, the cargo price in San
Francisco was--for Coos Bay coal, $9.50; Seattle coal, $10; South
Prairie, $10; Nanaimo (domestic), $10; Nanaimo (steam), $12; Lehigh,
$18; Cumberland, $12.

These figures make it evident that a good margin of profit may be
calculated on from the Gilman coal. Mr. Whitworth will not be able to
get his bunkers up until he has his road in operation to the mines; but,
with temporary chutes, he can load 100 tons a day from the time the road
opens, say March 15th. In six weeks after beginning he expects to
increase to 300 tons a day, and one month later he can make the output
600 tons a day. As the headings are driven in the product can be
increased to almost any desired amount.

The Washington Mines, on Squak Creek, I did not see; and concerning the
Raging River Mines I have no settled convictions. As to the coking coal
on Snoqualmie Mountain, we may expect important developments.
Undoubtedly the new road will promptly enter upon a large and increasing
coal business.


  [Sidenote: Handling the iron ores.]

  [Sidenote: Furnace sites]

  [Sidenote: Salal Prairie.]

  [Sidenote: Charcoal cheaply produced.]

The question here respecting iron ores along this road is not as to
their quantity, or quality, or as to their utilization, but only as to
what road or roads will handle the business that will arise from this
source. Naturally the bulk of it belongs to the Seattle, Lake Shore and
Eastern Railway, and at one time there seemed to be no doubt that large
iron-works would at once be established at Salal Prairie by the Moss Bay
Company, of England; but the east shore of Lake Washington has finally
been settled upon for the great plant of this wealthy company; which of
itself will go far to establish the natural monopoly which the Lake
Shore Railway seems to have of the ores on the west side of Cascade
Mountains. And in regard to the magnetic ores generally, this road, from
its location, would seem to be master of the situation. All the iron ore
on the west side of the mountain is owned by men whose interests are
identified with Seattle, and with this line of railroad. The best point
for manufacture in itself considered, the best chance for fuel, the best
line for transportation, the best point for trading and for shipment,
are all on the line of the Seattle Railway. Good furnace sites may be
found at many points, but Salal Prairie is a spot which seems to have
been set apart by nature for a manufacturing town. It lies near the
intersection of the valleys of the South Fork and Middle Fork branches
of Snoqualmie River, is about six miles long and three miles wide, is
flat, dry, salubrious, and well supplied with water. It has a natural
outlet to the South, as well as to the east and west, is convenient to
the iron ore and limestone of both the Middle and South Fork, and not
far distant from the ores of Cle-ellum. It is less than ten miles from
Snoqualmie coking coal, and fifteen miles from the Green River coals.
And, what I think is a still better resource for fuel, it is in the
midst of the great Snoqualmie forests, where saw-mills will soon be
felling the timber, and providing an endless supply of slabs and refuse
tree-tops, from which charcoal could be manufactured at very small

It is well known that charcoal is the best of all fuels for making iron,
because of its freedom from damaging impurities. Its expensiveness
generally prevents its being much used now, but here the cost need not
exceed five cents per bushel, and 100 to 120 bushels would suffice for a
ton of iron. The only question concerning the charcoal made from fir
timber is as to its ability to bear the burden in a tall stack. It is
becoming common now to utilize the by-products of wood, formed during
its conversion into charcoal, by a process which makes the charcoal
stronger. But all difficulty on this point can be relieved by conforming
the size of the furnace-stack to the strength of the charcoal. This is
the only fuel which has ever been used on the Pacific coast for the
smelting of iron ores. These enterprises have not been particularly
successful thus far, rather because of the inferior quality of the ore,
than from any defect in the fuel. The bog ore and the limonites which
were used at Irondale, near the Canada line, and at Oswego on the
Willamette, were generally low in iron and high in phosphorus, and the
bog ores were soon exhausted.

  [Sidenote: Quantity of charcoal to the ton of iron.]

At Irondale, near Port Townsend, recourse has been had to a refractory
ore obtained on Texada Island, in Victoria Sound, on which a duty of
seventy-five cents a ton has to be paid, and which requires a large
amount of fuel for smelting it, perhaps as much as 150 bushels of
charcoal. But Mr. H. T. Blanchard, who is interested in the Irondale
Works, says in a late letter (November 29, 1887):

    "It is perfectly safe to rate charcoal at six cents per bushel, and
    the quantity necessary to make a ton of pig-metal not to exceed 120
    bushels, with a good chance of getting it down to ninety bushels per
    ton with fair ores."

  [Sidenote: Bessemer ores commonly distant from fuel.]

The iron ores of the Cascade Mountains will be taken to some extent to
mix with the inferior ores near the coast, but they will be chiefly
worked into Bessemer-pig and steel rails. Steel-making ores are not
common anywhere, and are widely separated from fuel, which makes them
very costly in the States east of the Rocky Mountains. This well-known
fact is alluded to by Mr. Swank, in his report on the Iron Trade of
1886, in the following words:

    "It is also a fact worthy of notice, for which geologists may find a
    reason, that nowhere in this country are our best steel-making ores
    found in proximity to mineral fuel, either anthracite or bituminous,
    while in some parts of the Lake Superior region, even timber
    suitable for the manufacture of charcoal is almost wholly wanting."

  [Sidenote: High cost of Lake Superior ores.]

The most important deposits of steel ores in the United States are on
Lake Superior and in Missouri; but these ores are smelted chiefly by the
Connellsville coke of Pennsylvania, which is 700 to 800 miles distant.
The Cranberry ores of North Carolina are some hundreds of miles from
fuel. A late number of the _Iron Trade Review_ quotes the prices of ore
at Cleveland, Ohio, the principal receiving point of Lake Superior
ores, as follows:

  Specular and Magnetic Bessemer, per ton      $7.00 to $7.50
  Bessemer Hematites                 "          5.75 to  6.70

  [Sidenote: Cost of producing ore in Pennsylvania.]

The same authority gives the cost of the ore and coke necessary for the
production of a ton of iron in Mahoning Valley district, at $9.90 for
the ore and $4.50 for the coke = $14.40. To this must be added about
$4.25 for flux, labor, management, interest and repairs, making a total
of $18.65 as the cost of producing one ton of pig-metal.

  [Sidenote: Cost of Bessemer-pig in Snoqualmie Valley.]

Thus the superior advantages of the Snoqualmie Valley are readily seen.
Here are steel ores, two kinds of fuel, and the limestone in close
proximity. Putting the fuel at more than I think it would cost; putting
the cost of mining the ore at the maximum cost at Cranberry, N. C., and
freight at double price, and we have as the cost of a ton of
Bessemer-pig, as follows:

  Ore                      $3 00
  Fuel                      6 00
  Flux                        50
  Labor and management      2 00
  Interest and repairs      1 50
                          $13 00

  [Sidenote: Large market for steel rails.]

This is lower than the present cost of producing Bessemer-pig anywhere
in the United States, according to the best of my information; and at
the same time the market is better. The demand for steel rails in the
Rocky Mountain country and in the Pacific States is, and will be, large
and permanent, while the demand in China and other foreign countries
will constantly increase. And so will it be with machinery and tools of
all kinds, agricultural, mining and manufacturing. This demand will be
both domestic and foreign, and constantly enlarging. And it may be
safely asserted that no railroad exists, or can be built anywhere in the
Pacific States, which will compare with the Seattle, Lake Shore and
Eastern Railway in its control of the iron business.


  [Sidenote: Limestone.]

  [Sidenote: Marble, granite, sandstones, slates.]

I have already said so much as to the convenience and excellence of the
limestone beds associated with the magnetic ores, that I will only
allude to them here as constituting the great resource for furnace-flux,
for building-stone, for lime, and for monumental and ornamental marble.
This will be an important item for transportation. The granite, also,
will be wanted for building, and for paving blocks. There are, no
doubt, quartzites, sandstones and slates which will be in request; some
for the supply of silica needed for tempering fire-clay (which latter is
reported to have been found on Cedar River in large quantity and of good
quality); some for road metal; some for paving; some for building.

  [Sidenote: Precious and base metals.]

In this group, however, the great resource is in the ores of the
precious and base metals, which have been fully described under a former
head. Too little is known of the silver and lead and gold ores of the
Snoqualmie Valley to lay much stress upon them. The indications do not
justify us in ranking them with the ores of the Columbia Valley.

The gold placer mining of the Yakima country makes no large show so far.
The silver, lead and copper ores, described by Mr. Burch, may develop
largely, but as yet no calculations can be made as to their value in
supplying tonnage. This field ranks with the Wenatchie, Chelan, and
Methow regions, being undeveloped, and yet so full of promise as to
deserve careful attention.

  [Sidenote: Okinagane, Colville and Kootenai.]

The mines of the Okinagane and Colville regions promise large results.
All this mineral region, up to and including the Okinagane, lies fairly
within the patronage ground of the Seattle Railway as it pursues its
course to Spokane Falls. The Colville and Coeur d'Alene, to which may
now be added the Kootenai, mining regions, constitute a large area lying
north and east of Spokane Falls, and offer themselves as possible routes
for the Manitoba Railway, but chiefly as tempting fields for railroad
enterprises. The city of Spokane Falls is deeply interested in bringing
in the trade of these growing mines, and the Seattle Railway corporation
may wisely consider the prizes here offered.

  [Sidenote: Coeur d'Alene.]

  [Sidenote: Transportation lines to the mining regions.]

Railroad building has begun in the Coeur d'Alene country. The Coeur
d'Alene Railway and Navigation Company have constructed a narrow-gauge
road from the Old Mission, near the junction of the north and south
forks of the Coeur d'Alene River, a distance of about thirty-five
miles. The tonnage is said to be much greater than this narrow-gauge can
handle at present.

From the Old Mission, which is now the terminus of the narrow-gauge
road, the ores are taken by steamboat and barges down the Coeur
d'Alene River, and up the lake to Fort Coeur d'Alene, where connection
is made with the Spokane Falls and Idaho Railroad, running from Fort
Coeur d'Alene to Hauser Junction, on the main line of the Northern
Pacific Railway. This arrangement enables the mines to send out and
bring in their freight, but it is not satisfactory. There seems to be an
opening for a line from Spokane Falls directly into that country. It
would cost $20,000 a mile, by Mr. Mohr's calculation, and would be
seventy-five miles long. If, however, it be true, as reported, that the
Northern Pacific Railroad will make a cut-off from Missoula across the
Coeur d'Alene Mountains, this field will be occupied; which, however,
is not probable.

The Chewelah, Colville, Summit, Metalline and Kootenai mining districts
could all be reached by a line from Spokane Falls by way of Colville and
Little Dalles. And by running a spur from Colville to a point below
Kettle Falls on the Columbia River, control could be gained, first, of
the navigation between Mahkin Rapids and Kettle Falls, and also the long
stretch of navigable river from the Little Dalles to Death Rapids in
Canada, crossing the Canadian Pacific Railroad at Farwell. It is
calculated that 750 miles of navigation would thus be opened by the
addition of a piece of track twenty-five miles long, connecting the
Kootenai River with Arrowhead Lake.

A new discovery of silver-lead ores, made on the Kootenai Outlet River,
is making a great stir just now. The body of ore is said to be the
largest yet discovered. We shall expect the Manitoba people to be
looking into this development. There is also some talk of the mining
region on both sides of Kettle River, near the Canada line. The Pend
d'Oreille district is also promising. All this is suggested as food for
thought and investigation.


  [Sidenote: The only competition is between Tacoma and Seattle.]

The location of Port Townsend puts that town out of the general
competition. The same is true of Olympia. Whatcom, or some possible town
near the line between Whatcom and Skagit counties, might grow into
consequence if made the terminus of some transcontinental road. This
point, however, is involved in the larger question of the course of the
Manitoba Railroad. With the present outlook, the only two competing
towns on Puget Sound are Tacoma and Seattle. The former has the
advantage of being the terminus of the Northern Pacific Railroad, and of
having large private capital to advance its interests. These have made
the town all that it is. It is handsomely laid out, and well built. It
has an elegant hotel, and a population said in Tacoma to be 12,000, and
in Seattle to be 7,500. The harbor has water enough, but the landing is
bad; there being no level ground available for wharves or business
houses near the water. A mere roadway, cut out of the high bluff,
furnishes the only line of communication. The town is one to two
hundred feet above the water and above the main railroad depot, and must
be reached by a long, steep road. Tacoma is twenty-six miles farther
from the sea than Seattle, has a back country of inferior resources, and
has no advantage in distances from the East.

  [Sidenote: Advantages of Seattle.]

Seattle has already been described. It has probably double the
population of Tacoma, and more than double the business. It has flat
ground enough for commercial purposes. In its position, its harbor, its
relations to the back country, its materials for trade, commerce,
manufactures, its present and prospective railroad connections, it
surpasses all present and future competitors on Puget Sound.

There will be mining and trading towns at numerous points between
Seattle and Salal Prairie.

  [Sidenote: Towns of East Washington.]

The towns on the east flank of the Cascade Mountains may have a future;
_i.e._, Cle-ellum, Ellensburg, and North Yakima. They have a chance for
the State capital, and there may be manufacturing as well as mining
towns near the iron ore, and other mineral beds. Small places will also
spring up at the mouth of the Wenatchie and the Okinagane, and at the
termini of the steamboat landings.

The county seat of Lincoln cannot remain at Sprague. Wheatland would
have a chance for that.


  [Sidenote: Spokane Falls and its fine prospects.]

Assuming that Spokane Falls is the objective point of the Seattle
Railway, I will give a somewhat full account of this thriving young
city. In 1882 it had 700 inhabitants; in 1887 it had over 7,000. In 1883
the Northern Pacific Railroad reached there, and since that date the
town has grown continuously. It will be a large city, as will be obvious
if its advantages be considered. These are chiefly: I. Its water-power;
II. Its agricultural relations; III. Its mining surroundings; IV. Its
railroad prospects; V. Its good ground for building.

  [Sidenote: Mr. Paul F. Mohr's article.]

I. ITS WATER-POWER.--The value of this water-power arises partly from
the volume of water and its great fall, and also its uniformity, and its
freedom from disturbing causes. The river falls in a succession of
cascades amounting to 156 feet within the limits of the city. Mr. Paul
F. Mohr has published an intelligent article on the subject, from which
I quote the following statements:

    "To arrive at the available number of horse-power which the Spokane
    River could furnish at this point, assuming 90,000 horse-power as
    the gross power of the river, and deducting 60 per cent. therefrom,
    would leave 36,000 horse-power as a most conservative and minimum

    "The City of Minneapolis used in 1880, as nearly as I can ascertain,
    about 20,000 horse-power, and Minneapolis is probably the largest
    flour-milling point in the world.

    "The industries requiring most power are, in their order, as
    follows: lumber, flour, iron and steel, paper, woolen goods and
    worsted goods, with several industries consuming a comparatively
    small amount of power, not necessary to mention. Of the industries
    above named, all but the iron and steel industries can be followed
    at this point, and, in fact, the flouring, paper and woolen
    industries belong to this section of the country."

It is claimed that the Spokane River at the falls never rises more than
six feet, and never freezes. The river here has cut so deeply into the
basalt, that there must be combination among the riparian owners in
order to draw the water to good mill sites, and invite manufacturers to
use the power. Mr. Mohr urges this.

Two flour-mills are now there turning out about 450 barrels of flour a
day; also saw-mills, and, I think, a dynamo for electric lights, etc.;
but, of course, these use but a small part of the power, which, if fully
utilized, in such ways as are suggested by Mr. Mohr, would of itself
create a large city.

II. AGRICULTURAL RELATIONS.--Spokane Falls has a promising agricultural
country on all sides. The Pend d'Oreille region has good agricultural
capabilities, though the best lands there are in the Indian reservation.

The country north of Spokane Falls, in the direction of Colville, is
spoken of as a fertile valley, having more rain than the plateau
country, much of it limestone soil, specially productive in hay and
wheat. The wheat is harder than the plateau wheat, and contains a larger
proportion of gluten; hence it is desired as a mixture for the wheat
that is usually brought to the Spokane Falls mills.

Turning to the great plateau, we find that the rich Palouse River
country, since the construction of the Spokane Falls and Palouse
Railroad finds its readiest market at Spokane Falls. And now that the
Seattle, Lake Shore and Eastern Railroad is striking out through the
Great Bend, another portion of this great producing region will be
brought within easy reach.

III. MINING INTERESTS.--I need here only refer to the fact that Spokane
Falls is situated centrally with regard to the mines of precious and
base metals heretofore described. Evidently the business from the mines
of Chewelah, Colville, Little Dalles, Kootenai, etc., must come here
except so far as it may be diverted to a tide-water city which would
smelt their ores and sell them goods. No doubt the Canadian Pacific will
handle some of the business of the Kootenai mines. Similar remarks may
be made with regard to the mines of the Coeur d'Alene country, with
the qualification that a road crossing the mountain, say to Missoula,
would divert some of the trade to Helena or Butte City.

The miners of Okanogan, Methow, etc., would be nearest to Spokane Falls,
but would be 100 or 150 miles on the way to Puget Sound, which would
divide the trade.

IV. RAILROAD PROSPECTS.--The Northern Pacific Railroad, a
transcontinental line, already passes through Spokane Falls. If the
cut-off through the Coeur d'Alene country should be made, it would be
equivalent to an additional road. The Spokane Falls and Palouse Railway
joins the Northern Pacific at Marshall, only nine miles from the city,
and its general course points directly toward it.

The road across the Great Bend has been commenced. The road to Colville,
Little Dalles, etc., will inevitably be made at an early day.

This would make it really the centre of six roads, counting the Northern
Pacific as two.

V. BUILDING GROUNDS.--The city is built and building on both sides of
the river, and stands on a level, dry, gravelly plain, a mile or more in
width, rising into wooded hills. In other words, it has all that can be
desired for situation.

  [Sidenote: Sprague, Colfax, and Lewiston.]

Sprague, Colfax, and Lewiston claim attention as indicating the points
in a proposed branch line of railroad, leaving the Seattle, Lake Shore
and Eastern Railway somewhere in the Great Bend country.

Shops of the Northern Pacific Railroad are in Sprague, which fact is an
endorsement of the locality. Its population is over 1,500. The town
standing in a coulée, there are no indications of fertility of soil in
sight. Here the timber belts seem to end, and no trees are seen for 100
miles eastward. It occupies an intermediate position between the great
wheat areas of Whitman County on the south and of Lincoln on the north.
Stage lines leave here for Colfax (south) and for Davenport and other
towns in the Great Bend (north), and also for the Okanogan mines.

Colfax is about forty miles southwest from Sprague. It is on the Palouse
River, in a narrow valley where there is scarcely room for a town. The
bordering hills are steep; the surrounding country is some 400 or 500
feet higher than the town. It is claimed, however, that there are good
grades to be had for railroads going in any direction. The town has a
population of 1,800 to 2,000, and is evidently prosperous. It has
water-power and wheat-mills. The railroad agent in the town says that
his cash receipts for freight average $1,200 a day. Knapp, Burrell & Co.
told me that they brought in 672 carloads of freight annually in the
regular course of their business. I felt surprised at the statement.
This firm does a farmers' business in barbed wire, wagons, all sorts of
agricultural machinery and implements, grain-bags, etc., etc.

Mr. Hamilton imports groceries to the amount of $75,000. Coal is $12.00
a ton. Lumber is scarce and high, and freights enormous. A citizen told
me that he had paid $64.30 freight from Portland on a lot of lumber that
cost $34.90 in that city. Another marvelous story was that a citizen
paid $5.00 a ton for coal in St. Paul and $20.00 a ton to bring it to

  [Sidenote: Notes on the Colfax country.]

In asking about the surrounding country, I made the following notes:
One-half the country is arable. The non-arable land is grazed by
horses, sheep and cattle. Wool, an important item. Of the arable land,
one-tenth is under the plough; of this, three-fourths is put in wheat,
and one-fourth in oats and barley--more barley than oats. Very fine root
crops. Average of wheat, 30 bushels per acre; oats, 50 to 60 bushels.
Price of wheat, 45 cents; freight to Portland, 20 cents, making $6.60 a
ton. Peaches mature. Can raise corn, but it does not pay to shuck it.
There is a continuous wheat area of 70 townships, equal to 2,520 square
miles, taking in a little of Idaho.

  [Sidenote: Lewiston.]

Lewiston, in Idaho, came into being during the days of placer mining,
and now depends on agricultural business. It has about 1,000 people, and
may become important by reason of its location at the junction of the
Clearwater and Snake rivers. The transcontinental line that may some day
be built through Wyoming might pass through Lewiston.

  [Sidenote: Walla Walla.]

Walla Walla is the oldest, and was long regarded the best of all the
towns of East Washington. It is beautifully situated in a fertile
country; has about 5,000 inhabitants; is well laid off and built, and
has a more staid and settled population than any other town there. This
is true, also, of the farming population around Walla Walla, many of
whom have comfortable homes. The town has some water-mills; and an
astonishing amount of "truck" is raised and shipped in this
neighborhood. The city has not grown much of late, and, except its
agricultural surroundings, there is nothing especially to give it


  [Sidenote: Railroad branches.]

The building of the West Coast Railroad will be a happy circumstance for
the Lake Shore road. Skagit County, and especially Whatcom County, have
large resources, and the preoccupation of this ground may discourage
other parties from any attempt to build up a commercial city on
Bellingham Bay. A branch from the Northern Pacific at the Common Point
to Salal Prairie would not hurt, and might help the Seattle, Lake Shore
and Eastern road.

Besides the short spurs to the mines on the west side of the Cascade
Mountains, there may be needed branches up Cle-ellum, and other rivers,
to mines. I cannot see the wisdom of a branch to the Walla Walla
country, which could be reached only by paralleling the Northern Pacific
down the Yakima River, or else by striking off in the Great Bend, and
crossing the Northern Pacific and its Palouse branch, and then Snake
River, to reach a country already occupied by the Oregon Railway and
Navigation Company, and lying over 100 miles nearer to the tidal market
along a down grade, than by the Seattle road with its mountain crossing.

  [Sidenote: The Palouse country.]

A branch into the Palouse country would have more to recommend it. It is
nearer, and competition will be on more equal terms. There are now three
railroads in the Palouse country: namely, the Oregon Railway and
Navigation Company's road from Palouse Junction to Moscow, Idaho,
passing through Colfax; the Farmington branch of this road, from Colfax
to Farmington, and the Spokane and Palouse, which runs from Marshall, on
the Northern Pacific, to Genesee. But a road passing through Sprague and
Colfax to Lewiston would cross some rich, unoccupied territory, and
everywhere would compete for business on fair terms.

Whilst I was in Colfax, at my suggestion, the town was canvassed as to
the annual amount of its freight. The aggregate amount paid by fifteen
firms reached $200,000, and the balance was estimated at $25,000, making
$225,000. Five firms claimed to handle annually 2,075,000 bushels of
wheat, making 62,250 tons. These figures seem large for so small a
place as Colfax.

The length of this branch would, of course, be affected by the location
of the main line across Great Bend. If the main line should take the
route preferred by Mr. Mohr, Wheatland would probably be the nearest
starting-point. This would be all the better for Spokane Falls; but for
the long haul to Puget Sound, it would seem to be more desirable for the
junction to be farther west.

  [Sidenote: Arguments for the Polouse branch.]

To my mind, the chief arguments for building this branch are, first,
that it would be a start for the transcontinental road across Wyoming
and Nebraska, and then, so to speak, it would be stretching out one wing
of the bat with a view to catching the Manitoba bug.

The other wing of the bat would be the Colville branch. The eccentric
bug would inevitably hit one or other of these wings, and when once
caught, would be held.

  [Sidenote: Manitoba railroad.]

Concerning these Manitoba people, we may assume that they will think
with regard to the routes according to the facts of nature. The direct
line across the Kootenai country would strike the Colville branch, but
in the opinion of able engineers the difficulties are so nearly
insurmountable, that this is least likely to be chosen of all the
routes. The cut-off from Missoula to Spokane Falls by way of Lake
Coeur d'Alene, seems manifestly the best route for this road, that is,
if it be not already pre-empted by the Northern Pacific; but strong
reasons are given to show that the Northern Pacific will not, and
cannot, make this cross line; in which case, we might almost conclude
that the Manitoba will cross here, and inevitably join the Seattle road.

The only other crossing left would be the Lolo Pass, which would be
still more out of their direction, and would give them no better chance
for an independent line to tide-water than the more northern routes. The
fact is, that the late strategic movement of the Seattle railway in
seizing upon the key to the Great Bend country made it master of the


  [Sidenote: Rapid growth of Seattle and Spokane Falls.]

It is now just one year since I left Washington Territory, and I am glad
to be able to report, on the best authority, that the great interests
heretofore described have progressed, some of them with accelerating
speed. The city of Seattle has added 10,000 to her population, and
Spokane Falls 5,000 to hers.

Mining has spread its area, multiplied its diggings, and gone forward at
every point amazingly. Agriculture during the past year has not advanced
with equal rapidity. This is easily accounted for by the influences of
the mines and cities. The crops were fair, but not as large as in some
former years; but no fears need be entertained with regard to this great

  [Sidenote: Change in the location of the railroad.]

The trunk line of the Seattle, Lake Shore & Eastern Railway will cross
the Cascade Mountains at Cady's Pass instead of at Snoqualmie Pass as
originally designed, and reach the Columbia River by the Wenatchie
Valley. Crossing the great river near the mouth of the Wenatchie, where
it is thought that a city will be developed, and passing along the
northern limb of the Great Bend country, it will connect with the
other end of the road which is now under construction to Wheatland.


A report from Paul F. Mohr, chief engineer, in regard to this new line,
is embraced in this chapter. Something is said about the Wenatchie
Valley, also, by Mr. Whitworth.

But the original line is by no means abandoned. It has probably reached
Hop Ranch before this time, and will be continued through the great
timber belt, passing Salal Prairie, at least as far as the iron and
marble beds on Mt. Logan. No doubt in time the road will cross
Snoqualmie Pass, and continue to the mineral beds on the Cle-ellum and

I have obtained the following interesting and valuable reports from Mr.
Whitworth, who has been frequently mentioned in this report, Mr. Routhe,
president of the Board of Trade of the city of Spokane Falls, and Paul
F. Mohr, Esq., chief engineer.


SEATTLE, W. T., Oct. 2, 1888.

I now proceed to answer your questions.

1. Present population of Seattle, and commercial growth?

  [Sidenote: Population of Seattle.]

  [Sidenote: New manufacturing establishments.]

A census was taken in June of this year, and the total enrolled was
19,700. I presume it was safe to say that the population then was
20,000, and that now it is from 22,000 to 25,000, for although houses
have been built very rapidly, there is not a house, or a room hardly,
that is not occupied. There are now seven brick-yards in operation, each
manufacturing from 10,000 to 50,000 per day. Two boiler-works have been
added to the manufacturing interests since you were here. Three
saw-mills, besides four on the line of the Seattle, Lake Shore & Eastern
Railway between here and Gilman, have been built, and all have more than
they can do.

A new fish-canning establishment has been started, and is in successful
operation. A pile-creosoting works, an extensive shipyard works, a
shingle mill, and a timber-preserving works and saw-mill are all under
way on the north side of Salmon Bay.

  [Sidenote: New steamers.]

The _Alaskan_ and the _T. J. Potter_, two magnificent steel steamers,
and the _Harry Bailey_ and _Hassalo_, good-sized passenger steamers,
besides three or four tugs, and an extra steamer on the Alaska route, as
well as an extra steamer every second or third week for freight from San
Francisco, have been added to the Seattle fleet since you were here.

2. The Moss Bay Company.

  [Sidenote: The iron company at work.]

There seems to be no question but that the location on the eastern shore
of Lake Washington is definite. A contract has been made with Denny, and
with those holding with Guy, but not with Guy himself. I understand that
no contract has been made with, or for, any other one, although Mr. Kirk
has been and is still examining all other places.

Mr. Kirk, and Mr. Williams, another of the firm, are living on the
grounds at Kirkland, and have a force of men preparing the grounds, the
position of the different buildings having all been located. Brick and
other material is being placed on the ground.

They have entered into contract to roll for the Seattle, Lake Shore &
Eastern Railway 30,000 tons steel at Kirkland, to be delivered within
the next twelve months. They, however, will bring the blooms from Moss
Bay for this.

  [Sidenote: Coking coals.]

Coke is the fuel Mr. Kirk wants, and thinks he will have. But I do not
think that the question of coke supply is settled yet. Mr. Kirk's
property that we visited (Section 2) is, so far, not developing as they
had hoped. Mr. Kirk has disposed of his interest there. The Smith coking
ovens that we visited at Wilkeson are still producing a small amount of
coke. One or two other veins have been opened at Wilkeson recently, and
the company opening are proposing to put up ovens, and work and coke
their coal. It probably will make about the same quality of coke as the
Smith mine. The only coal that has been analyzed and stands that test
for coke, is Section 34, near Kirk's Section 2. We got some samples of
it, you remember.

The Snoqualmie coal has been taken possession of by a Mr. Niblock, who
talks now of going to work to open. That, you know, cokes well in the
open air.

The following is the cross-section of our best veins at Ruffner, or
Raging River, Section 16. Roof, sandstone:

                        FT. INS.
  Mixed Coal and Slate   1   2
  Coal (clean)           3   1
  Rock                       3
  Coal                       6
  Rock                       6
  Coal                   1   3

Total, coal, 4 ft. 10 in., rock, 9 in.; which seems to be very strong
coking coal. This bench can be worked to advantage, I think.

We have another, also, of about three feet of coal, clean, and it is
underlaid with three feet of fire-clay, which probably will be as
valuable as coal. I have burned some of the brick, and sent some away to
be tested.

No further discovery has been made in the neighborhood of the Denny or
Guy mines. At the "Chair Peak" Iron Mines, owned by Mr. Wilson, Kelly,
_et al._, as they have examined further, the deposit has shown itself
much larger than at first supposed. It is about two and a half miles
from the Guy lode, on Mt. Logan.

  [Sidenote: New discoveries of iron ore.]

Some quite extensive iron deposits have been discovered on the west side
of the Sound, nearly due west from Seattle. They have not yet been

What is thought to be a very rich deposit of iron has just recently been
found on one of the islands in the San Juan group, within the territory
of the United States, said to equal the Texada deposit in British
Columbia, which the iron works at Irondale, near Point Townsend, use.
The Irondale furnace commenced work again about a month since.

In regard to the precious metals: there have been no developments of
importance on this side of the mountain.

The Okanogan, Salmon River, Coeur d'Alene and Colville mines promise
richer and richer as they are more developed.

  [Sidenote: Lumber business growing.]

4. The activity in the lumber business is unabated--is on the increase.
The increase of the lumber mills, that I have mentioned in the first
part of this letter, indicates _that_.

The traffic on the railroad, both in logs and manufactured lumber, is
much larger than had been anticipated, and is increasing. In July the
road hauled 2,843,464 feet of logs. September log haul was about ten per
cent. greater. I could not get the exact figures to-day.

  [Sidenote: Population and freights increasing.]

5. Spokane Falls is still growing very rapidly, and now claims 12,000 to
15,000 inhabitants, and is building very substantially. Along the line
of railroad on this side of the mountain the country is filling up, of
course, with small ranches or home-makers, and those already on the line
are making increased clearings, and will therefore have more to ship.

The following shows something of what is being done in July: "Coal
freight, 2,750 tons; miscellaneous, 3,090; passenger traffic, $6,150;
and the advance has been about the same as in logs, except on coal."

  [Sidenote: Labor strike at Gilman Mine.]

[6. Mr. Whitworth next gives an account of certain difficulties and
troubles, chiefly with miners, which ended in a "strike" that was
somewhat prolonged, but he thought the men would soon go to work on the
company's terms. Of course, the high hopes concerning these mines
(Gilman) had not been realized. Mr. W. proceeds as follows:]

  [Sidenote: Gilman coal seams.]

On the Smith, or No. 4 vein, we had just got the gangway driven far
enough to turn rooms. The Andrews vein we were driving the gangway
entirely in the coal, but were not yet far enough to turn rooms. Nos. 1
and 2 veins had gotten, with the gangway, well in under the hill, and
was looking very fine, and turning out good coal. With the prospect of
No. 4, or Smith vein, and Andrews vein, I am still well pleased. On the
vein in Section 26, just across the valley, I have started in a tunnel
to open it; have already driven about sixty feet through the rock, and
have about seventy feet still to go. This tunnel is still going on, not
having been stopped by the 'strike.'

  [Sidenote: Progress of the West Coast Railroad.]

The West Coast Railroad is completed to Snohomish City, and trains run
regularly, the bridge across the river being completed only about ten
days ago. Both passenger and freight traffic is much larger than
anticipated. They are grading, and expect to have ready for service yet
this fall, five miles beyond Snohomish. Along most of the entire line
the timber is very fine and abundant, and a great deal of the land
adjacent is rich agricultural.

  [Sidenote: Resources of the country along the new line across Cady's

7. Concerning the new line across Cady's Pass and down Wenatchie Valley.

[After some remarks respecting grades, etc., Mr. Whitworth proceeds as

On this [west] side of the mountain [Cascade] the timber reaches right
up nearly to the summit, as in the Snoqualmie, and the reports are this
region is rich in coal, and probably also in iron, with some indications
of precious metals. Soon after crossing the divide the line will reach
the very rich agricultural valley of the Wenatchie, which is called "the
garden of Eastern Washington," and traverse its entire length. And it
will pass within a comparatively short distance of the mineral districts
on the northern slope of that range called Mt. Stuart.

I have heard that there were numerous indications of coal near the mouth
of the Wenatchie on both sides of the Columbia. This, too, will be the
nearest main line to the rich mineral district of Salmon River, or
Okanogan, as well as all that northern mineral belt which extends to the
Rockies, and will strike the heart of the Big Bend wheat-fields. It will
also be eighty miles shorter than the other line. True, Ellensburg and
the Cle-ellum district will be missed, but I think this will be more
than compensated for by those I have spoken of.

8. Of the progress of the work.

  [Sidenote: Progress in building the road.]

On this side of the mountains no work except surveys has been done on
this line. At Spokane Falls the bridge across the river, and about forty
miles of track is finished, and they are now operating, I believe, with
very encouraging prospects. On the Snoqualmie line they are pushing on.
The trains now run regularly to Raging River. The bridge across that
stream is not yet completed, but will probably be by the 1st of
November, and it is expected that the trains will be running to the Hop
Ranch by December 1st.

The branch or spur up Raging River to the Ruffner mine, on Section 16,
is located, and some little work has been done, but it is not being
prosecuted at present, so I do not expect we will be able to get out any
coal from there before next spring or early summer.

  [Sidenote: Cable Railway in Seattle.]

Another item showing the prosperity of Seattle, is the opening of a
five-mile circuit of cable road to Lake Washington, which occurred last
Saturday. I will send you some papers giving some items that may be of

  [Sidenote: Southern Pacific Railroad supposed to be coming to Seattle

A syndicate of men prominent in the Southern Pacific Railroad management
purchased Milton Point, the land directly west, across Seattle Bay, from
the town, and are clearing it off, and say they will make extensive
improvements over there in the near future. They are building a large
ferry steamer, and have a franchise to run a ferry hourly between town
and the front. It is to be on the route by December 1st. Report says
that the Southern Pacific is coming in there.

At Smith Cove quite a little town is building up, and property is
advancing all around there.


SPOKANE FALLS, Oct. 17, 1888.

  [Sidenote: Growth of Spokane Falls.]

Our city has progressed in growth splendidly since you were here. There
are now fully 13,000 inhabitants. The census of July 1st showed 12,000.
About $1,500,000 have been expended in buildings this year. Eight
business blocks of brick and granite have been built this season. One of
these cost $150,000. Four of these blocks are three stories, three are
four stories, and one five stories.


Forty miles of the Seattle, Lake Shore & Eastern Railway will be
completed between here and the Big Bend by December 1st. The iron,
engines and cars are nearly all here, and the farmers in Lincoln
County are greatly rejoiced at the opportunity for shipping their grain
and stock to market.

[Sidenote: Prodigious development of the mining interests.]

The development in the mines this year has been greater than all the
work done heretofore. The gold mines near Murray, Idaho, have yielded
beyond the hopes of all interested in them. I saw four gold bricks, at
the First National Bank, said to contain $37,000. These were from one
mine, a South Fork mine of the Coeur d'Alene.

The Kootenai country is now reached by steamer after leaving the
Northern Pacific road at Sand Point. A good deal of development work is
progressing, and the ore is being shipped out daily. It is mostly
silver-bearing galena. A new town just above the British line on the
Kootenai Lake has been started. It is called "Nelson." I shall send you
some formulated data at an early date.

The crops have been good, though not so good as last year. Emigration to
the farming sections does not come in as fast as we would like--in fact,
not as rapidly as to the towns. I think it will be better after the


SPOKANE FALLS, W. T., Dec. 3, 1888.

The following is a report of the proposed line from West Coast Branch to
mouth of Wenatchie River:


  [Sidenote: Engineering details of the new route.]

The proposed line will leave the West Coast Branch at a point six miles
south of Snohomish City, running east, crossing the Snohomish River on
drawbridge at the junction of the Snoqualmie and Skykomish rivers:
thence up the right bank of Skykomish on a 1 per cent. (52.8 feet per
mile) grade, a distance of forty miles from point of beginning.
Thirty-five miles of 2 per cent. (105.6 feet per mile) grade carries the
line to Cady's Pass and mouth of tunnel. The tunnel will be 3,500 feet
long, in granite rock; probably little or no lining will be necessary.

Descending to the east by a 2 per cent. grade, following the Wenatchie
River, a distance of twenty miles. Descending and level grades alternate
for the next twenty-five miles, where 1,000 feet of tunneling will be
required in the divide between the Wenatchie and Chumstick rivers. This
tunnel saves eight miles of distance in the following eighteen miles,
and avoids entering the box cañon of the Wenatchie, a difficult and
expensive piece of work.

The development in the Chumstick valley is especially easy. Thence into
the Wenatchie valley again, on a 1 per cent. grade, a distance of
twenty-seven miles, to the mouth of the Wenatchie River.

A summary of the distances and grades shows a very prettily balanced
scheme for operating cheaply and effectively.


                                        DISTANCE.      GRADE.

  West Coast Branch to end of 1% grade,   40m.         × 1%
  End of 1% grade to tunnel,              35m.         × 2%
  Tunnel section,                         3,500 ft.
  Tunnel to foot of 2% grade,             20m.          -2%
  Foot of 2% grade to Wenatchie           52m.          -1% (or less.)

The introduction of 1 per cent. grades, though higher than the water
grades of the Wenatchie and Skykomish rivers, is justified as balanced
against the 2 per cent. mountain grades and the saving effected thereby
in the bench country, which prevails along both rivers mentioned.

While tunnel is being driven, a 4 per cent. cross-over through Cady's
Pass can be cheaply put in if necessary.


  [Sidenote: Mr. Mohr's account of the resources of the new route.]

West of the Cascade Range the road will pass through a densely wooded
district, through which, with the additional aid of transportation
facilities by river now existing, an immense logging industry will be
created. The red fir and white cedar now being taken out are superior in
quality to those of any section of this coast. Each mile as opened will
therefore become an immediate source of income. Considerable prospects
and discoveries of gold and silver have already been found, and a number
of men are now at work making such developments as are practicable in
the absence of transportation facilities. With the opening of the road a
heavy mineral traffic will be developed in the future.

Near the summit large deposits of iron are sure to be found, judging
from the extraordinary local magnetic variations.

Twenty miles west of the summit are iron-soda springs, which will no
doubt become quite famous.

East of the Cascade Summit the country tributary to the road is covered
with open, fine forests; the timber is principally second growth yellow
and black pine, in tall and straight trees, forming very valuable
timber. This prevails for forty miles east of the summit. The remaining
country to the mouth of the Wenatchie River is rich agricultural land,
fairly well settled up between the Cascade Summit and the mouth of the
Wenatchie River.

Very extensive indications of coal and iron are found; and along all of
the tributaries of the Wenatchie considerable deposits of precious
metals have been discovered, which will no doubt be rapidly developed in
the future.

This entire section of country has been well known to miners and
prospectors for the past twenty years, but the total lack of
transportation facilities has thus far prevented any considerable
development of mining properties.

At the confluence of the Wenatchie River with the Columbia River (which
will likewise be the crossing point for the Seattle, Lake Shore &
Eastern Railway) we find the Columbia River is navigable as far up as
the Okanogan country. A large city is destined to spring up at this
point, which will control, by means of the Columbia River, a very
extensive tributary country.

The valleys of the Entiat, Chelan, Methow, Okanogan, and other rivers,
which drain an extraordinary mineral belt, with occasionally fine
districts of agricultural land, will provide an enormous quantity of
freight for the road. None of this freight will be able to find an
outlet except by this road, by reason of the fact that very swift and
rocky rapids, which begin about twelve miles south of our crossing and
continue for some fifty miles, will for at least a great many years
prevent practicable or profitable navigation to points below our


The aesthetic side of railroading has undoubtedly a large commercial
value, and in this instance it will be secured without additional
expense. It will certainly prove a valuable factor in the obtainment of
passenger traffic. From the city of Seattle to the Columbia River an
ever changing succession of magnificent and surprising views will meet
the eye of the traveler. Indeed, I believe that the scenic attractions
of the Seattle, Lake Shore & Eastern Railway will stand pre-eminent
among all the railroads on this coast.

       *       *       *       *       *

Mr. Mohr's report opens up a region almost unknown heretofore, which is
shown to abound in the finest timber, to possess superior agricultural
lands, and to give indications of rich deposits of coal, iron, and the
precious metals.

All the reports I have seen from Washington Territory confirm the
impressions I first received in regard to its wonderful resources.


LEXINGTON, VA., Dec. 13, 1880.

     SEATTLE, W. T., Jan. 9, 1889.

     DR. W. H. RUFFNER.

     _Dear Sir_: In relation to your request for such additional data as
     may be of interest in connection with your Report, especially such
     data as relate to the changes in population since the time of your
     visit here a little over a year ago, likewise relating to new
     developments in the plans of the Seattle, Lake Shore & Eastern
     Railway Co. and other matters of interest, I respectfully state the

     The immigration into Washington Territory since December, 1887, has
     been very heavy, and while there are no statistics showing the
     number of immigrants, except such as have taken up their residence
     in the towns and cities, I am, I feel sure, not far from the truth,
     when I estimate their number at 65,000. Of this number,

       Spokane Falls has received about  8,000
       Seattle        "     "       "   10,000
       Tacoma         "     "       "    7,000

     The remaining number may be assumed to have been distributed about
     as follows:

       To the various small towns east of the
           Cascade Mountains                          7,500

       To the various small towns west of the
           Cascade Mountains                          6,000

       To the agricultural and mining regions
           east of the Cascade Mountains             16,000

       To the agricultural, timber, and mining
           region west of the Cascade Mountains      10,500

     The usual proportion between the populations of country and towns
     in Western States and Territories is as three to one (roughly
     estimated); this would indicate that the towns and cities have
     received more than their fair proportion of the entire immigration,
     and this is true. The consequence will, therefore, undoubtedly be
     that of the immense immigration predicted for the year 1889 a
     correspondingly larger percentage will reach the rich agricultural,
     mineral, and timber lands of Washington Territory, and thus
     restore the proper balance.

     Since Mr. Whitworth's report and yours, an additional cable
     railroad and an electric street railway have been started at
     Seattle, and quite a number of new enterprises have been commenced.

     At Spokane Falls considerable terminal facilities for the Seattle,
     Lake Shore & Eastern Railway have been added, a system of warehouse
     and mill tracks has been agreed upon between the Northern Pacific
     Railroad Co. and the Seattle, Lake Shore & Eastern Railway Co. to
     be built and operated jointly by the two companies, a new cable
     street railroad has been projected and partly built, and about five
     miles of street railway has been placed in operation. Extensive
     improvements in the development of the water power are in progress,
     several new bridges have been built, and a general air of
     prosperity pervades the place. To indicate the importance of the
     business of Spokane Falls it is only necessary to state the fact
     that this city has paid nearly $1,750,000 to the Northern Pacific
     Railroad during the year 1888 for freights and passages.

     The Seattle, Lake Shore & Eastern Railway Co. has decided to build
     a branch line from some point near the crossing of the Grand
     Coulee to the Okanogan mines (Conconnully district), about seventy
     miles, work to be commenced as soon as the main line shall be
     completed. This feeder will command a very extensive business,
     perhaps equal to the enormous business of the Coeur d'Alene mines
     which is now enjoyed by the Northern Pacific Railroad.

     Since Mr. Whitworth's last report to you, considerable development
     work has been done upon the Grand Ridge mines 2-1/2 miles east of
     Gilman and adjacent to our railroad; the vein developed is four
     feet thick and furnishes a hard, compact coal, superior for
     domestic purposes to any coal yet found in that section. Shipments
     commenced last month, and the prospects for a heavy output are very

     The Spokane Division of the Seattle, Lake Shore & Eastern Railway,
     extending from Spokane westwardly, a distance of forty-five miles,
     is practically finished; trains are running regularly, and as soon
     as our motive-power and cars can be disengaged from the work of
     "ballasting" we will be able to do considerable business.

     Very respectfully yours,

     PAUL F. MOHR,


       *       *       *       *       *


    Missing punctuation has been added and obvious punctuation errors
    have been corrected without note.

    Archaic, obsolete and misspelled words have not been changed.

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