Our Mines, Part Two

From the Dutch Flat Forum, March 14, 1878

The next claim to be described in connection with the dormant wealth of Gold Run, is the Gold Run Ditch and Mining Company, under the management of Mr. J.L. Gould. Like the claim described in our last issue, the dirt to be washed is similar in character and pay, but more extensive, containing seventy instead of twenty acres. Like all claims in the section, surface washing was commenced in 1862, when a level of 200 feet was worked, paying over $400,000. Before reaching the cement gravel stratum lying on the bed rock, there are still 200 feet more to be washed, richer in some degree than the uppermost level, and which is estimated will yield $500,000. The blue cement gravel on the main channel is only just reached, and as it opens, appears to be thicker than in the adjoining claim above, already described. Hence it appears to us, from present appearances making our calculations on last week's basis, that although it will not yield quite so much in cubic yards, it will yield more in money. We think it quite reasonable, allowing for free water, which is the great advantage of this claim, to place its future cash product at $1,400,000 in round numbers, that is $500,000 for the upper 200 feet, and $900,000 for the blue gravel.

The condition of this claim at the present time discloses admirable management and well repays the visitor, whether skilled or unskilled in the science of mining, for a careful examination. In fact, we have ourselves visited no place in California where the stupendous work done by hydraulic mining is shown to such perfection as at Gold Run. To stand at the mouths of the dark yawning tunnels leading away down through the bed rock to the American river, and cast a glance upwards some 400 feet from point to point, until the uppermost surface is reached, the mind becomes deeply impressed with the grandeur of the enterprise, pluck, and perseverance of our mining men, in conceiving and accomplishing such stupendous undertakings. We repeat, the mine in question is well worth visiting by any party interested in our national progress, as particularly showing the extent and perfection, of our mining operations. From the engine house, sending hot air a hundred feet down to the Burleigh drills, each drill boring with the power of ten men, through the hard cement lying on the bedrock for blasting, and through still harder rock in opening deep cuts to the main outlet for washing at different points, with their incessant clatter, the roaring of 1,500 inches of water under 400 feet pressure, the booming of blasts in the powder drifts, and of boulders on the surface, in all this, and more, we say the skilled or unskilled visitor in mining matters is taught a grandly shown lesson how we in California fight with the elements to enrich the world with her gold and fight successfully. Still, with all these interesting things to be seen, this claim will only be fairly opened by the present season's work, and placed on a permanently paying basis. To reach this point, including the tunnel from Canyon Creek, of which we shall speak next week, engine house and fixings, and other incidental expenses, some $150,000 have been expended, and the daily expense to carry on the work is still very large. The Company now employ a force of twenty white men to perform the principal work, at $35 a month and board, and this force will be shortly increased as room is obtained. There is also a force of ten Chinamen under contract to run powder drifts, for which they get from seventy-five cents to one dollar, per foot. Mr. Gould the Superintendent, has been with the Company some sixteen years in one connection or another, and has earned his present arduous and responsible position by force of character and merit. We beg to acknowledge his politeness and civility in a becoming spirit, and trust the acquaintance begun in our mutual positions as public servants may grow to perfect fullness.