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August Quill 2011

August Quill 2011

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THE PROSPECTOR’S

1974 Colorado Gold Panning Championships Back row: Kathy Hokenstad, 3rd Place Ladies Event, Larry Rassmussen, 1st Place Worlds Dry Panning Champion. David Hughes, 3rd Place Worlds Dry Gold Panning Championship. Front row. Steve Chesmore 1st Place Junior Event. Laura Chesmore Colorado 1974 Gold Panning Champion. Robert “Bob” Chesmore 2nd Place Colorado Gold Panning Championship, Prospector John, 3rd Place Colorado Gold Panning Championship

official publication of The Gold Prospectors of Colorado
PO Box 1593, Colorado Springs, Colorado 80901 The First Colorado State Gold Panning Championships by Hugh Hokenstad and Diane Anderson
“In 1972 Ronn Hokenstad, (my dad) and I opened a Prospecting and treasure hunting store in Manitou Springs, Colorado called the Prospectors Pick. In June 1974 two of the most colorful people I have ever met came in the store. They were prospector John and Skagway Helene out of Skagway, Alaska. I have never seen anyone who could compare with them. They both were “World Gold Panning Champions.” They wanted to know why there was not a Colorado State Gold Panning Championship in Colorado? There were championships in California, Iowa, Alaska, Arizona, Georgia and other states. I thought this would be great. I called David Hughes at Enjoy, Colorado and told him that I was sending down a couple and he should listen to them. We need a Championship and it could be held in Manitou Springs. One month later we held the first Colorado State Gold panning Championship. It was held at the Briarhurst in Manitou Springs. We charged everyone who came as spectators 50 cents to watch. We had over 1,000 people attend the Championship. Bob Chesmoreʼs daughter Laura, came in first and was the first Colorado State Gold Panning Champion. continued on page 2

volume 38 no.8

inside
First Colorado State Gold Panning Championships Contacts August Calendar ! August Events Gold Panning Championships Membership Meeting Minutes A Whopper Cresson Mine Cresson Mine 1914 Columnar Jointing Cripple Creek Geology Cripple Creek Gold Deposits Prospecting the Internet Paris Mill The Naming of Hall Valley 2 2 3 4 5 6 7 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14

august

2011

G LD NUGGETS is a blog for and by GPOC members. Gold Nuggets is an informational hub for members to keep up-to-date with GPOC news and events. We encourage you to email your news items and information to the webmaster at www.gpoc.com. Join GPOC on FACEBOOK! You need your own Facebook account. Access GPOC on FACEBOOK through a link on the GPOC website.

President Ben Higley president@gpoc.com

Treasurer Bill Smith treasure@gpoc.com Webmaster Stacey Smith webmaster@gpoc.com Editor Lin Smith quill@gpoc.com

GPOC
contacts

Contact Info for all club activities Bob Hale (719)213-3383 Membership membership@gpoc.com Claims Marty Witcher claims@gpoc.com

Trustees One Year Gary Beaderstadt Two Year Diane Anderson Three Year Jim Blakenship

Vice President Wayne Wittkopp vicepresident@gpoc. com Secretary Elise Pearce secretary@gpoc.com

The First Colorado Gold Panning Championships, continued
In November I called Rufus Porter, “The Hardrock Poet” out of Cripple Creek and told him that we were going to have a meeting at Enjoy, Colorado to organize a Prospecting Club the second Wednesday in November. I forgot to tell David Huges. That afternoon David started receiving phone calls about the club. Dave had a fit and had to come up with some stuff quickly. We held the meeting and 35 people showed up. Sixteen of the 35 joined the club. A few days before the December meeting I received a call from the Editor of the Sun newspaper. He asked if he could send a reporter and photographer over. I said sure. They came over and interviewed me. We then went to the creek and they took pictures of me panning gold. The picture and story appeared in the paper the day of our meeting. Well, that evening over 200 people showed up. We only had room for 35! Next to Enjoy, Colorado was the Raintree Inn. (Presently the Antlers Hilton) Dave went over and rented the meeting room and we moved over there. Dick Phillips was elected President, I was elected Vice President and Frank Burns was elected Secretary-Treasure. The Championship is four months older than the club! This is how the GPOC got started.” Hugh Hokenstad. “Grandpa always told people that it was he and 17 others that helped start the club. The original 16 members and me. Even though I was almost 2 at the time, he always included me. It was the 2004 General Meeting when Gary had introduced Hugh to the club. (he was visiting from Arizona) and he said again, it was him and 17 others including his granddaughter and pointed at me. That is where the 17 comes from. I heard him say that a LOT growing up. The 1976 Championships were part of the Colorado Centennial Celebrations. The Colorado State Champions had their picture taken and had a story about them and the Championships on the front page of the newspaper which was then put into the time capsule on top of Pikes Peak to be opened in 2076. My mother, Kathryn Osborn, (Hokenstad back then) won that year. David Hughes, friend of Hugh Hokenstad was the Chairperson of the “Pikes Peak or Bust by 76 Centennial – Bicentennial Committee.” Dianne Anderson, now all grown up is currently a Trustee on the Board of GPOC.

Prospector’s Quill
Editor Lin Smith quill@gpoc.com
Gold Prospectors of Colorado P.O. Box 1593 Colorado Springs, Colorado 80901 The GPOC is a 501(c) charitable organization

www.gpoc.com
The Prospector’s Quill is the official newsletter of the Gold Prospectors of Colorado. The opinions are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the club or its members. The editor, club, officers, and contributors do not assume any liability for damages resulting from use of information in the Prospector’s Quill. Articles of interest are welcomed. All articles submitted for publication are subject to editing. Submission of articles must be received before the 20th of the month. Unless noted, non-profits may reprint or quote from articles, provided credit is given to the author’s and publication and a copy of the newsletter the article appears in is sent to the editor of The Prospectorʼs Quill at PO Box 1593, CS CO 80913. All pictures are the property of the photographer and are not to be copied or reproduced.
The information is provided solely for the readerʼs g e n e r a l k n o w l e d g e .  G P O C a s s u m e s n o responsibility for its completeness or accuracy.  Although care has been taken to produce the information in the Quill, information is provided without warranty of any kind, either express or implied, with respect to the accuracy or completeness of the information.  I want to thank you in advance for pointing out my mistakes! However, it is YOUR responsibility to research resources and make sure that you are in compliance with all laws and regulations, as well as following the GPOC CODE of ETHICS.

The Colorado Gold Panning Championships are held annually on the first weekend of August. Competitors come from all around the state and country to compete in our fast passed  events. We compete in four styles which include national/world style, skill, speed, and worldʼs dry. By clicking on the different styles you will have a direct link to the rules for that competition.

GPOC The Prospector’s Quill Vol. 38 No.8

WE ARE ELECTRONIC at www.gpoc.com

2

August calendar
For further information contact:

meetings
4th
Board Meeting
Gold Hill Police Station 7:00 PM 955 Moreno Avenue, CS, CO
president@gpoc.com

events
5th, 6th, 7th
Gold Panning Championships Western Museum of Mining and Industry 225 Northgate Blvd. Colorado Springs
Sponsored by the Cripple Creek and Victor Mining Company Volunteers needed to help with GPOC gold demonstrations see information below

events
5th-7th
Leadville Boom Days & International Pack Burro Race

events
13th-14th
Gold Rush Days Buena Vista McPhelemy Park, Corner of Main & Hwy. 24
http:// www.fourteenernet.com /goldrush/

Bob Hale (719) 213-3383 www.gpoc.com
Please refer to the information below for further events

Claims Committee Meeting There will be no formal claim meeting during the summer.

see information below

see information below

10th
General Membership Meeting

5th - 7th  
Creede Rock, Mineral and Fossil Show Creede, Colorado Underground Mining Museum, 10 AM to 5 PM 30+ dealers Educational displays and evening lectures

11th-14th
“The Rock Show at B u e n a Vi s t a : A CONTINental Divide TAILgate” Rodeo Grounds in Buena Vista, CO 9AM-5PM http:// www.coloradorocks.org /

19th-20th-22nd
Lake George Rock Show

7:00 PM 3400 N.Nevada CS, CO

Lake George Gem & Mineral Club, U.S. Hwy. 24, Lake George, CO 9AM-5PM, free admission http:// www.lggmclub.org/

GPOC Summer Events
Sept. 16th, 17th, 18th Denver Gem & Mineral Show, Denver,CO Sept. 24th" Public Landʼs Day

The 21-mile Leadville Boom Days International Pack Burro Race — the second leg of Pack Burro Racingʼs Triple Crown

Between Fences Pictorial Display
August 12, 2011 - September 30, 2011 Buena Vista Heritage Museum, Buena Vista, Colorado This interactive display is on loan from the Smithsonian and will on exhibit at the Buena Vista Heritage Museum beginning August 12, 2011. You will be able explore pictorially the role that fences and other barriers have played in the history of our country. $5.00 per person. 719-395-8458.

Colorado State Gold Panning Championships
Friday, August 5 Saturday, August 6 Sunday, August 7

Old Timers All Juniors National

Team Womenʼs Menʼs

State Worldʼs Dry
All events begin at 10:00 AM

Gold Rush Days Buena Vista, Colorado
Date: August 13th & 14th The event will be held in the natural setting of McPhelemy Park in the heart of Buena Vista with something to do for everyone both days. Featured Events: Entertainment, Mountain Man Encampment with storytelling, Third Leg of the Triple Crown Race, Duck Race –Win $500/other prizes, Western costume Promenade Kids Activities: Gem panning, Kayaking on the Town Lake with Colorado Kayak Supply,Fishing on Town Lake with Dave Kelly of Hi-Rocky,Toilet Seat Race (kids and kid wannabes), Citizens Race--Try your luck racing with a burro.

Leadville Boom Days Leadville, Colorado
Date: August 5th & 7th Leadville's Annual Boom Days, which takes place the first weekend in August, has been honored by the United States Congress as a Local Legacy Event. This three-day celebration of the areaʼs mining heritage offers entertainment for people of all ages and interests, from mining competitions, motorcycle games and a rod and gun show, to live music, a craft fair and parade.

GPOC The Prospector’s Quill Vol. 38 No.8

WE ARE ELECTRONIC at www.gpoc.com

3

Wyatt Erp: A Life On The Frontier
Date: August 6th 5 PM Imperial Hotel's Gold Bar Room Theatre, Cripple Creek, CO $15.00 in advance $17.00 at the door (cash only) All ticket proceeds go to support the Cripple Creek District Museum. Payment accepted by: Calling the Museum at 719-689-9540 or 719-689-2634 Clicking on the "Donate" button on the Museum web site at www.cripple-creek.org Or Mailing a check to the Museum at P.O. Box 1210, Cripple Creek, CO 80813 http://www.cripplecreek.org/

Living History Day
Date: August 13th & 14th South Park City, Fairplay, CO Board Members and volunteers, dressed in historical outfits host this event, plus special attractions.

Expedition Titanic! Date: Wednesday, August 24 7 PM Denver Museum of Science and Industry, Denver, CO
P.H. Nargeolet, director of underwater research for RMS Titanic, Inc., will chronicle a 2010 dive to the Titanic wreck site and highlight the remarkable discoveries from the expedition. $12 member, $15 nonmember. Reservations are highly recommended.  To purchase tickets, please call 303-370-6000, M-F, 9-5

Richard Marold as Nikola Tesla
Date: August 6th Stratton Outdoor Amphitheater Teller County Road 81 & Diamond Avenue Victor, Colorado The Stratton Outdoor Amphitheater will host Richard Marold as Nikola Tesla. Tesla was the brilliant scientist, at the time considered a mad scientist, whose work in the late 19th and early 20th centuries set the stage for the technological breakthroughs that shape our world of today. He devised the system of alternating current, the polyphase alternating-current system, and created the modern radio system. Among his discoveries are the florescent light, laser beam, wireless communications, wireless transmission of electrical energy, remote control and robotics. He registered over 700 patents worldwide. He foresaw interplanetary communications and satellites. Tesla spent seven months in Colorado in 1899 conducting experiments in wireless telegraphy and investigating the higher strata of the atmosphere. The cost is $10 per person; seating is limited. Please reserve at VictorColorado.com. On Saturday, Sept. 10 the STCFG will showcase local mining history with an event at the amphitheater. Watch for more information on VictorColorado.com.   All proceeds go to the STCFG for its historic preservation and interpretation projects.  Reserve now

Reading the Bones: Investigating Human and Animal Disease Date: Tuesdays & Thursdays, October 4-20 6:30-9 PM
Denver Museum of Nature and Science The fossil record is rich with evidence of disease, infections, fractures, and medical anomalies for both humans and animals. Understanding disease and its antiquity provides valuable knowledge for dealing with disease in modern times. Through lectures and labs, research associate Sue Ware, PhD, will discuss paleopathology, or the study of disease, injury, and anomaly in the fossil record, and how scientists use this information. Please note that this is a medical class and includes viewing graphic photos and handling specimens that exhibit disease. Sign-up early as classes fill up. Classroom 311 $150 member, $180 nonmember Registration is required.  Please call 303-370-6000, M-F, 9-5 http://www.dmns.org/learn/adults/classes

Burro Birthday and Bluegrass Festival
Date: Saturday, August 13th, 10:00 - 4:00 Western Museum of Mining and Industry 225 Northgate Blvd. Colorado Springs, CO Our mascot burros are celebrating another birthday. Museum tours and outside machinery operations will be available topped off by a meet & greet with the burros and a rockin' afternoon concert with Mountain Holler and Acme Bluegrass bands! Food and drink vendors will be on site for this special event! 10:00-12:45 Mountain Holler 1:00-3:45 Acme Bluegrass
photo by Lin On our way to Frisco we spotted two moose moving up the valley right behind Tin Pan. We pulled into Tin Pan where another couple from GPOC were. We all climbed over dredge piles and stood in red ant hills finding out how fast a moose can move (as well as humans in red ant piles) to capture a picture. There is more than gold out there! (note to self: always wear tennis shoes) Lin

GPOC The Prospector’s Quill Vol. 38 No.8

WE ARE ELECTRONIC at www.gpoc.com

4

First Colorado State Gold Panning Championships Manitou Springs, Colorado As Reported back in 1974! The First Annual Colorado Gold Panning Championship was held on the grounds of Briarhurst Mansion, Saturday and Sunday, August 10th and 11th 1974. In spite of the shortness of the time to organize it, the competition with the rodeo, the novelty of the event, the rain on Saturday evening, it was a solid success. Over 1,000 spectators watched 65 contestants swish, jiggle, and slosh hundreds of pans of gold in the first Annual Colorado Gold Panning Championships. Top honors in the Colorado State Championship event went to 16 yr. old Laura Chesmore of Colorado Springs, who recorded a brilliant time of 18.6 seconds, just one-tenth of a second off the world mark for panning gold listed in the Guinness Book of Records. She beat out her father, Bob Chesmore, a four time World Champion, who took second place with a 20.0 second clocking. Third place honors went to colorful Prospector John of Skagway, Alaska, the 1974 Canadian Skill Panning Champion, who garnered a time of 25.5 seconds. In addition to the Wet Pan Championships, the First World Dry Gold Panning Contest was held. This was panning nuggets with dry sand using a Garrett “Gravity Trap” Gold pan. Larry Rasmussen copped the dry pannerʼs crown when he clocked an amazing time of 34.5 seconds. Second went to Rich Good who completed in 47.4 seconds and third went to David Hughes who separated out the 8 nuggets from one quart of dry sand in 60 seconds flat. Lauara Chesmore became the 1975 Worlds Ladies Gold Panning Champion on the 2nd of March this year at Tropico, California. Pam Glabb of Manitou Springs, Colorado, who had never had a gold pan in her hand before the 11th of August 1974, was taught how that morning and after one hour of practice, came in 2nd in the Colorado Ladies Championship and on 1 June 1975 got 1st place in the Worlds Invitational Pantheon at Taylor, British Columbia, So donʼt be afraid to practice and enter. You may become a champion also.
This document came from the 2nd annual Colorado Gold Panning Championship and 3rd Annual Grand Treasure Hunt Program. It was my grandmothers. In it she wrote the times of the competitors for mens and ladies. and raffle winners and what they one. One person won a nugget gold bar, another a mining claim. Also given away were maps, gold pans, a sluice, portable dredge and a dredge. On the page with the picture "Back Row: Kathy Hokenstad Osborn. (My mom) On the page about the 1st Annual last paragraph: Pam Glabb now Hokenstad. (She's my Aunt.) Diane Anderson
WE ARE ELECTRONIC at www.gpoc.com 5

2011 State Gold Panning Championships Judge’s Rules

Judges will be wearing yellow ribbons.
• • • •

Head Judge: Dermit Haley Judge: Stacey Smith Judge: Larry Weilnau The first competition of the day will start promptly at 10 AM. The second competition will be at 1 PM and the third will be at 3 PM.

T h e re w i l l b e a l u n c h b re a k f o r competitors, judges, and volunteers. Sign-ups will promptly close 15 minutes before each competition. No late entries will be accepted! Look for the competition announcement board for information. Exact times for each competition will be posted on the competition announcement board. The Official Rules for competition may be found on the GPOC website. Juniors must choose to compete in Juniors or Adult Competitions. They are not allowed to compete in both.

• •

A Great Resource for Research The Cripple Creek District Museum in Cripple Creek Colorado received an important donation of early mining and property records. The Ute Pass Historical Society in Woodland Park, Colorado, donated more than 70 historical registers ranging in date from 1861 to 1899. These ledgers document all the mining claims in the Cripple Creek District up to 1899, and hold land history and ownership records dating more than a decade before Colorado's 1876 statehood.

GPOC The Prospector’s Quill Vol. 38 No.8

General Membership Meeting July 13, 2011 • • • • • • • •
President Ben Higley opened the meeting at 7:18 Pledge of Allegiance President Ben asked if anyone knows the price of gold. It was $1,586.00 an ounce. President Ben asked if there were any new members, there were 13 new members. President Ben asked if anyone went out prospecting, several members stood and told their stories of their finds. President Ben talked about the Cache Creek host program. He thanked all of the past & present volunteers. No treasurers report this month due to the Treasurer being out of town. Webmaster / Championship Judge Stacy Smith talked about the upcoming Colorado State Gold Panning Championships that will be held the weekend of 5-7 Aug11. Cripple Creek & Victor Mining Company will be sponsoring the championships this year. With the possibility of advertisements in the Denver Post and Colorado Springs Gazette. She also spoke of the possibility of entrance fee increases starting next year. The Judges for this years competition will be Dermit Haley (Head Judge), Stacey Smith (2nd Judge) and Larry Weilnau (alternate Judge) Timers will be needed for each event. President Ben reiterated to all the club members that they can be a part of any committee within the club that they would like to be part of. The more volunteers, the better. President Ben asked if any of the committee chairs had any reports. There were no to reports this month. Trustee Jim Blankenship came up and announced the club outing at the Beaver Creek Claims during the weekend of July. No highbankers allowed, and only dredging for 5 dredges will be allowed. Casual use equipment has no restrictions. Contact (e-mail) the Vice-president with your dredging reservations. Trustee Jim noted that the roads to both Cache Creek and the Beaver Creek claims are in real good condition. Webmaster Stacey Smith talked about the activities that have taken place on the website such as hits to the website and other documents. She also spoke about the different ways that members can obtain copies of “The Quill”. She also requested feedback from the members on their opinions of to the ease of obtaining the copies. President Ben said that we have Burro Days coming up 30-31 July 2011. Volunteers are always needed at the demo shows. President Ben notified the membership of the truck repairs that were done this past month. The cost of the repairs was approx. $350.00 Club member Trish Barr came up and spoke about the Womanʼs Day outing that is being planned for July 30th on the Beaver Creek Claims. President Ben talked about the Pikes Peak or Bust Rodeo show and the hours that volunteers will be needed. Break President Ben and Secretary Elise drew the coupons for the volunteer nuggets. Heart Association show was won by David Censner. Kingdom Days winners were Bill Smith & Jerry Belver. WWMI Rock Fair weʼre awarded to Don Bray and two to Ken Mull. Stacey & Jim opened the meeting after break and had drawing for the white ticket there was one winner. They then did the red tickets there were 10 winners. President Ben introduced guest speaker Herb Hendricks who gave a video presentation titled “Common Ground”. Meeting was adjourned at 9:45 PM
GPOC The Prospector’s Quill Vol. 38 No.8

Pikes Peak or Bust Rodeo 2011 GPOC member Ted Westcott & Rodeo Queens from Iowa and Oklahoma photo by Gary Beaderstadt

Note from the Editor: I am currently in California helping my mother-in-law in rehab. and will not be able to attend the Championships. I would

appreciate any pictures or articles for the Quill you might have to help me out. Please send them to:quill@gpoc.com. Thank you in advance. Lin

• • •

Gold Recovery Equipment
Designed and Built in Colorado

• •

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For Superior Recovery of Coloradoʼs Flour Gold

• • • • • •

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★ Highbankers ★ ★ High Volume/Pressure Pumps ★
Call for a free demonstration of the unique designs

• • •

Buena Vista , Colorado ★ 719-395 -2003 ★
6

by Bob Butl er

WE ARE ELECTRONIC at www.gpoc.com

“Foolʼs Gold: The Orange Roughie or Washington Nugget Just Another Whopper of a Story?” by Lin
Smith James Saunders Grill claimed finding a 98-ounce nugget on his property along the South Fork of the Yuba River in the mining town of Washington. After the discovery, a website appeared seeking investors to help develop a commercial mining operation called the Lost Scotchman Mine on the property, suggesting the nugget was: “Eureka! Nine pound nugget the tip of the iceberg?” "Act now and just like the 49ers of 160 years ago, you can experience the wealth and excitement of the Gold Rush," the Website encouraged prospective investors. “An ancient Treasure, the Lost Scotchman Mine, which was lost to the miners of the California Gold Rush of 1849, was recently discovered near the South Yuba River in the gold country region of the Sierra Nevada Mountains of California. 130 ounces of gold nuggets, the largest weighing 9 pound (the “Whopper”), were found during a brief exploratory assay of private land at the bottom of a canyon. The news of the discovery made front page stories in newspapers and magazines and was featured on the Fox, ABC, CBS and NBC television networks.” Even a picture of the Mining Journal featuring the nugget was on the website. The Lost Scotchman website by Mr. Grill seeking investors is no longer on the web. It was still available late in June but apparently the controversy surrounding the origins of the nugget has shut it down. The American auction house of Holabird-Kagin described the nugget as being one of the largest single pieces ever discovered in the area. Holabird & Kagin also assessed Grillʼs property for sale using the proof of the nuggets discovery as to the lands value. The property is landlocked, and federal court documents show Grill, has been involved in a longrunning legal battle with the United States Forest Service to gain road access. Kagin and Fred Holabird are no longer representing Grill in his bid to sell his land as gold-rich property based on the false claim of the Washington Nugget find. The parties involved mutually concluded that the Washington Nugget was from Australia. Confidentiality agreements prevent the discloser of how the nugget was obtained by Mr. Sanders. Evidently all parties involved are satisfied with the conclusion of the matter. The anonymous nugget's buyer was reimbursed for their purchase of $460,000, which was well over 3 times the melt price, and the gold nugget was sold to a secondary bidder for less than the original bid. Due to confidential agreements, nobody has any intention of pressing fraud charges in the case. Two smaller nuggets purported to have been found on Grillʼs land, and sold for $24,700, are believed to be from Grillʼs land. The Orange Roughie (Washington Nugget) was sold for $50,000 to a buyer in Quartzite, Ariz., in 1989 - but how it got to Grill is still a mystery. When going to Quartzite I am going to keep my eyes wide open in hopes of finding another whopper! Let the buyer beware. If it sounds too good to be true it more than likely is. With the historical high price of gold, swindlers have reared their ugly heads waiting for the gullible prospector to invest in false promises and get rich quick schemes. Be realistic in your expectations and donʼt get swindled by “Foolʼs Gold”! The notion was known by the late 16th century, when it was expressed in rhyme by Thomas Tusser in Five Hundreth Pointes of Good Husbandrie, 1573:

The Cresson Mine is Colorado's largest gold producing mine and a top 10 world gold producer.

Cresson Mine

Cresson Mine 1910

A foole & his money, be soone at debate: which after with sorow, repents him to late.

This year the GPOC is pleased to have the State Gold Panning Championships sponsored by the Cripple Creek and Victor Mining Company which owns the Cresson Mine. The Cresson Mine has contributed to the rich history of Colorado since the 1800s. In the early 1900s melting snow filled the volcanic area with no way to escape, filling mine shafts with water. Burt Carlton, with little knowledge, was hired to puncture the volcanic bowl to release the buildup of water. By 1910 the granite rim of the volcanic bowl was punctured and water at the rate of 8500 gallons a minute was released, allowing mining to take place at lower levels. The Cresson mine originally produced only low-grade ore but that was to change when Richard Roelofs was hired as manager to bring the mine out of the red of $80,000. Roelofs, a brilliant engineer, drove the mine shaft an additional 400 feet striking a rich deposit which produced $1,000,000 of gold in one year. A new shaft at 1200 feet struck a spectacular find, the “Cresson Vug”. (Vug-Cornish for cavity in the rock.) The “Cresson Vug” or geode was a chamber thirty feet across and thirty-six feet high. The walls and ceiling of this vug were reported to have been encrusted with almost pure gold several feet thick, in the form of sylvanite, considered the richest of all gold ores. It was said that the minerʼs waded knee deep in the gold-bearing sylvanite crystals. Gold was scooped up with a shovel from the floor of the vug, and because of its extreme value a vault door was installed at its entrance. The first ore shipments went to Colorado Springs under armed guard and were valued as high as $100,000 per ton! Today, the low-grade gold ore at Cripple Creek and Victor is mined at a rate of 55,000 tons per day. Though not rich, there is a lot of the low-grade ore. In 2002 it was estimated that that there was a reserve of 157 million tons of gold-bearing ore containing 50 million ounces of gold. Active mining benches in an open pit are blasted to release the ore which is hauled to a crushing plant that crushes the ore to a specific mesh size of about 5/8 inches in diameter. This screened ore is then placed on a heap leach pad where a cyanide solution is slowly dripped dissolving the gold from the ore. The goldbearing solution is treated with activated carbon and the gold is precipitated from the solution. The gold is then smelted into doré bars. The resulting gold doré bar is nearly pure gold along with minor amounts of other metals like silver, platinum, palladium, etc. The doré bar is sent to an outside refinery to produce .995-.999 "pure" gold bullion involving soaking the gold doré in nitric acid to dissolve the silver and platinum group metals.
7

GPOC The Prospector’s Quill Vol. 38 No.8

WE ARE ELECTRONIC at www.gpoc.com

Gold Strike Cresson Mine as reported in 1914 “This report had gone to the printer when announcement was made of a great gold strike in the Cresson Mine, operated by the Cresson Consolidated Gold Mining Company at Cripple Creek. While the report covers only the period ending November 30, 1914, this strike was of sufficient importance to warrant the insertion of a brief mention as a supplement. In December, 1914, a vug was located in the Cresson Mine 1,265 feet below the surface. The vug was in the shape of a pear, its dimensions being 33 feet in length, 14 feet in width, and 36 feet in height. The walls were lined with calaverite and sylvanite. It was the greatest strike of its kind ever made in a gold mine. The amount of gold that the vug will produce cannot be accurately estimated until the thickness of the walls has been determined. The discovery of this vug is a proof of the contention of the Cripple Creek miners that the richness of the ores continues to an unknown depth. Further proof of this is established by the discovery of very rich ore on the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth levels of three mines in the Cripple Creek district. The greatest depth attained in Cripple Creek is 1,900 feet, and the richness of the ore continues.” Colorado. Bureau of Mines. 1914. Denver, Colorado. Smith-Brooks Printing Company.
“The Cresson Strike is of interest not only on account of its great value but on account of its depth. A visit to the mine and a personal inspection of the bonanza impresses one tremendously. The occurrence of a large chamber of extremely high-grade ore at a depth of 1265 ft. below the surface is sure to inspire confidence in the deep-development possibilities in the district and will undoubtedly stimulate work on the lower levels of many Cripple Creek mines. Contributing influences are the recent favorable developments in the lower levels of the Vindicator and Golden Cycle properties, just over Bull Hill from the Cresson mine. The strike was made in the 12th level of the Cresson in the midst of the main ore shoot. A raise which was being driven as an ore pass from one of the crosscuts in the orebody on this level broke into a chamber almost full of rich ore thickly incrusted with crystals of quartz, strontianite and gold tellurides. The chamber is about 14 ft. wide, 23 ft. long and 36 ft. high. The present cavity is pear shaped and the ore pass enters it at a point a few feet above its present bottom. The full extent of the find has not yet been determined, but its CRESSON MINE TOURS

extension downward will soon be learned by means of a crosscut driven to tap it at a point about 27 ft. below the 12th level. "When first opened, the cavity had the appearance of a stope filled with broken ore. The filling consisted of fragments of breccia incrusted and permeated with crystals of sylvanite and calaverlte. Most of this material could be mined with a pick. The telluride crystals were of two kinds; some were tabular, many over 3/4 in. long, and many of these exposing a face having an area of more than 1/2 sq. in.; others were small and thick. Irregular deposits of crumbly, crystalline material thickly impregnated with telluride crystals formed the richest ore and assayed from $10,000 to $16,000 a ton. This material was carefully sacked, together with other fragments which were thickly encrusted with sylvanite. The balance of the chamber filling was shoveled over a 1-in. screen, the undersize assaying from $5000 to $6500, and the oversize running from $1000 to $1500. After the removal of the bulk of the filling above the chute opening, shots were put into the walls and all of the rock broken down was found filled with sylvanite crystals, as well as the walls from which the material was broken. The walls of the chamber show numerous small vugs lined with quartz and strontianite crystals and sylvanite or calaverlte. The net value of the ore actually in sight may be conservatively estimated at not less than $500,000. In view of the fact that the extent of the deposit has not yet been determined it is probable that later development may justify a much higher valuation. The main ore-shoot in which the rich chamber occurs is about 500 ft. long and has a maximum width of about 150 ft. on the 12th level. This shoot has been mined down from a point above the 6th level, but at the 12th level the width of the shoot suddenly increases from about 50 ft. to 150 ft. and the richest ore in the mine has been found in this level. The fact that the average value of the ore has increased with depth is a pleasing argument for those who favor deep development in the district. The Cresson is operated by the Cresson Consolidated Gold Mining & Milling Co. Most of the stock is owned by Chicago investors. The property lies in the gulch between Raven and Bull Hills. The mine has been efficiently managed for several years by Richard Roelof and its costs are probably the lowest in the Cripple Creek district. Engineering and Mining Journal, Volume 99. Western and Company, Hill Publishing Company, New York January 1 to June 30th 1915. Page 35. 

The Largest Gold mine in Colorado

("CC&V") operates the current-day Cresson operations. You can take a guided tour of this mine during the summer months, starting at the Victor Lowell Thomas Museum Victor, CO. June 1 - Sept. 4 - daily except Thursday - no tours on Thursday. $7.50 per person, all ages Tours are about 2 hours in length and begin at the Victor Lowell Thomas Museum, 3rd & Victor Ave., Victor, CO, promptly at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Please arrive 15 minutes prior to your tour time to sign waivers and view a safety video. Reservation holders who do not arrive 15 minutes early may be replaced with a standby and your reservation will not be refunded. http://www.victorcolorado.com/mining.htm

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Unusual Columnar Jointing in Rocks Revealed at the Cresson Surface Mine
by Steven Veatch An extraordinary display of rock columns, formed from prehistoric magma (molten rock) that cooled underground, has been recently exposed by mining operations at the famous Cresson mine. The Cresson mine is located between Cripple Creek and Victor, Colorado. The Cripple Creek and Victor Gold Mining Company unearthed these magnificent rock columns while conducting routine mining operations at the surface mine. About 32 million years ago a volcanic complex, with several eruptive vents formed along a deep break in the surface, was emplaced near Cripple Creek. Following the emplacement of the volcanic complex, mineral-rich fluids moved up from great depths and seeped into the fractures and fissures created by the violent volcanic upheaval, and cooled into hard, ore-bearing veins. This process formed a low-grade ore body of microscopic native gold attached to pyrite. Narrow, high-grade gold veins bearing quartz, pyrite, and fluorite were also formed. Most of the gold mined in the early days of the mining District came from the high-grade gold veins.

Mining operations at the Cresson Surface mine exposed the geometric design of columnar joints, formed by a cooling mass of magma over 32 million years ago.  The mine is located north of Highway 67 between Victor and Cripple Creek, Colorado.  The columnar joints found at the mine are parallel, prismatic columns that had formed in shallow magma at the mine. When these molten rocks cooled rapidly from the outside toward the center, they contracted. As a consequence, the shrinkage produced cracks or joints, generally in a hexagonal pattern that relived stress. Once the cracks or joints developed, they continued to grow, generally forming straight columns with parallel sides. Columns typically form at right angles to the cooling surface where the molten rock makes contact. The size of columns depends on the rate of cooling of the rock—the faster the cooling, the smaller the columns.

Unusual Columnar Jointing in Rocks Revealed at the Cresson Surface Mine, Cripple Creek, Colorado By Steven Wade 1906 with fair The historic Cresson mine began operations inVeatch

An the Cresson display cavern, was discovered results. In 1914, extraordinary vug, or of rock columns, formed from prehistoric magma (molten rock) that cooled 1,200 feet below the surface of the mine. The room-sized vug underground, has been recently exposed by mining opwas a rich strike—yielding over 60,000 troy ounces of gold in erations at the famous less than 4 weeks of frantic mining. Cresson Mine. The Cresson

Unusual Columnar Jointing in Mine is located between Cripple Creek Rocks Revealed at the Cresson and Victor, The potential Colorado. The Cripple Creek a surface mine was of the Cresson deposit as and Victor Gold Mining SurfaceCompanyand modern surface mining began in Cripple Creek, recognized in Mine,unearthed these magnificent rock columns 1990, December 1994 to recover low-gradeVeatch operations at the surwhile conducting routine gold. The first gold ingot Colorado By Steven Wade mining was poured in February 1995, and by the end of the year gold
production was 76,500 ounces. The Cripple Creek and Victor from prehistoric magma (molten rock) that cooled unGold Mining Company continue mining operations at the derground, has been More than 250,000 mining opCresson surface mine. recently exposed by troy ounces of gold erations at the famous Cresson Mine. The Cresson were mined in 2008.

face mine. An extraordinary display of rock columns, formed

As molten rocks cool below ground, they may shrink, forming joints.

Mine is located between Cripple Creek and Victor,

Colorado. remarkable display Victor Gold jointing Recently, a The Cripple Creek andof columnar Mining was Company the mine. The columnar jointing was formed as unearthed atunearthed these magnificent rock columns while body of magma that cooled underground surpart of aconducting routine mining operations at the into a rock face mine. known as phonolite.

Sheepeaters Cliffs in Yellowstone National formAs molten rocks cool below ground, they may shrink,Park, and Devils Tower Recently, a are good examples of these features. ing joints. in Wyoming remarkable display of columnar jointing

The first gold ingot was poured in February 1995, and by the end of the year gold production was 76,500 As molten rocks cool below ground, Victor Gold Mining ounces. The Cripple Creek and they may shrink, forming joints. Company continue mining operations at the Cresson Anywhere rocks that were once molten occur is a likely place for surface mine. More than 250,000 troy ounces of gold columnar jointing to develop: Devils Postpile in California, were mined in 2008. was unearthed at the mine. The columnar jointing was

joints, geology, mineralogy, focusing on the mine. The columnarpattern that relived was unearthed atgenerally in a hexagonal paleontology, and other jointing was related part ofscience topics. Gemstone sites in the Pikes Peak Earth a body cracks or that cooled underAbout 32 million years ago a volcanic complex, with formed asstress. Once theof magma joints developed, they conregion tinued to knowngenerally forming fossils columns are rock grow, as phonolite. several eruptive vents formed along a deep break in ground into a examined. Dinosaur and otherstraightin Colorado are with parallel sides. investigated. Current research on the mammoth remains and the surface, was emplaced near Cripple Creek. FolThe columnar joints found at the mine are parallel, beds is shared. the IceColumns typically at theat right angles to the cooling Age pollen found form Florissant fossil lowing the emplacement of the volcanic complex, Essayssurface where mining are rock makes contact. on Colorado the molten in shallow mineral-rich fluids moved up from great depths and prismatic columns that had formedon this blog.magma The size Mining operations at the Cresson Surface mine exposed the at the mine. When these molten rocks cooled rapidly the seeped into the fractures and fissures created by the of columns depends on the rate of cooling of geometric design of columnar joints, formed by a cooling mass http://coloradoearthscience.blogspot.com/2011/03/unusualviolent volcanic upheaval, and cooled into hard, ore- from the outside toward the center, they contracted. columns. rock—the faster the cooling, the smaller the of magma over 32 million years ago. The mine is located north a consequence, the shrinkage or bearing veins. and process formed a low-grade ore As columnar-jointing-in-rocks.htmlproduced cracksoccur is a of Highway 67 between Victor ThisCripple Creek, Colorado. Anywhere hexagonal pattern that relived joints, generally in a rocks that were once molten body of microscopic native gold attached to pyrite. likely place for columnar jointing to develop: Devils developed, Narrow, high-grade gold veins bearing quartz, pyrite, stress. Once the cracks or joints Sheepeatersthey con-YellowAbout 32 million years ago a volcanic complex, with Postpile in California, Cliffs generally forming columnsin and fluoriteformed along a deep break in gold minedtinued to grow, National Park, and straightTower in Wyoming were also formed. Most of the several eruptive vents stone Devils GPOC The Prospector’s Quill Vol. 38 No.8 www.gpoc.com 9 the surface,in theemplaced nearthe mining District came fromELECTRONIC at are sides. examples of these features. was early days of Cripple Creek. Fol- WE ARE the with parallel good high-grade gold the volcanic complex, lowing the emplacement of veins. Columns typically form at right angles to the cooling

Mining operations at the Cresson Surface mine exposed the surface mine. More than 250,000 troy ounces of gold rapidly at the mine. When these molten rocks cooled geometric design of columnar joints, formed by a cooling mass were mined in 2008. from the outside toward the center, they contracted. Steven Veatch is a well-known author and historian in the of magma over 32 million years ago. The mine is located north Coloradoremarkable blog the shrinkage produced Recently, As area. This display of columnar jointingcracks or by a a consequence, explores Colorado geophenomena of Highway 67 between Victor and Cripple Creek, Colorado.

formed rock of a body February that cooled Although such as part poured in are often linked with underThe first gold ingot wasformations of magma1995, and legends of fearsome giants or a rock known asiswas 76,500 by the endground year the devil, there phonolite. of the into gold production nothing supernatural about them; they are simply geometric expressions of natural rock ounces. The Cripple Creek and Victor Gold Mining parallel, The columnar joints found at the mine are forming processes and are another example Company prismatic mining operations at the Cresson of magma continue columns that had formed in shallow the many geologic features in the Pikes Peak region.

Cresson mine manager Dick Roelofs showing the Cresson Vug to an amazed Hildreth Frost and Ed De La Vergne on November 26,1914, as depicted in a contemporary woodcut engraving.
(Reprinted in Beebe and Clegg, 1955)

3-D portrayal of Cresson Pipe, looking Generalized outline of the north. Cresson blowout showing Note elliptical-shaped the location of the Vug. cross section, and Loughlin Modified from bifurcationand Koschmann (1935). at the margin of the pipe are shown in8x4x10m – 35,000 oz/month red. (From Jensen, 2003)

Generalized outline of the Cresson blowout showing the location of the Vug. (Modified from Loughlin and Hoschmann 1935)

Cresson mine manager Dick Roelofs showing the Cresson Vug to an amazed Hildreth Frost and Ed De la Vergne on November 26, 1914, as depicted in a contemporary woodcut engraving (Reprinted in Beebe and Clegg. 1955)

The Cripple Creek hills lie near the eastern border of a lofty and deeply dissected plateau, which slopes gently westward for 40 miles from the southern end of the Colorado Range, dominated by Pikes Peak, to the relatively low hills connecting the Mosquito and Sangre de Cristo ranges. The prevailing rocks of this plateau are granites, gneisses, and schists. During Tertiary time volcanic eruptions broke through these ancient rocks at several points and piled tuffs, breccias, and lavas above the uneven surface of the plateau. The eruptive rocks of the Cripple Creek district are the products of one of the smaller isolated volcanic vents of this period, a vent that erupted phonolite, a kind of rock that does not occur elsewhere in this general region. The most abundant products of the Cripple Creek volcano now preserved are tuffs and breccias, which cover a rudely elliptical area in the center of the district about 5 miles long from northwest to southeast and about 3 miles wide. The main breccia mass fills what once must have been a steepwalled chasm of profound depth. From the Conundrum mine, on the western slope of Gold Hill, to Stratton's Independence mine, on the south slope of Battle Mountain, the old granite walls plunge steeply down, with slopes which range in general from 70° to vertical and which in places actually overhang the breccia. This entire southwest contact represents a part of the wall of the great pit formed by the volcanic explosions that produced the breccia. In most of the other parts of the contact the walls are also steep. The general conclusion reached is that a tremendous volcanic explosion blew a great hole in the older rocks of the plateau. This hole was subsequently fined, perhaps partly with the fragments produced by the first explosion, including bits of granite and schist and pieces of the trees that were growing on the plateau at that time. To these materials were added, probably by later eruptions and explosions, fragments of phonolite and related igneous rocks. Finally, as shown in the drawing, a volcanic cone, consisting chiefly of fragments of rock was built up above the breccia-filled abyss.

After the eruptions had ceased the rocks adjusted themselves to the new conditions. Cracks were formed in them and in these cracks the gold ores were deposited by hot solutions that rose from deep volcanic sources. Rain and streams gradually wore away the cone and exposed the veins thus formed, which the keen eyes of prospectors afterward detected. The gold ores of Cripple Creek occur partly as narrow veins or as groups of closely spaced narrow fissures (sheeted zones) and are partly distributed more or less irregularly through masses of altered granite near fissures. Neither form of deposit is conspicuous at the surface, and only experienced prospectors would have found them. The gold is present chiefly in the pale brassyellow mineral calaverite, a combination of gold and tellurium, associated with quartz and purple fluorite. Native gold is rare, except in the upper oxidized parts of the veins. The ores average from 1 to 2 ounces of gold ($20 to $40) a ton, but the gold content varies widely, and comparatively small bodies of very much richer ore have been mined. In this district, as in most others, the ore is not uniformly distributed along the veins but is limited to what are known as shoots and occurs particularly where veins cross one another.
Geological Survey Bulletin 707 Guidebook of the Western United States: Part E. The Denver & Rio Grande Western Route. http:// www.nps.gov/history/history/online_books/geology/publications/ bul/707/contents.htm

Sections showing supposed outline of Cripple Creek Volcano

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A New Way to Look at Gold Deposits in the Cripple Creek Mining District: High-Resolution X-Ray Computed Tomography Applied to Understanding Ore-Forming Systems and Maximizing Precious Metal Recovery Steven Wade Veatch, Colorado Springs Mineralogical Society Timothy R. Brown, Cripple Creek & Victor Gold Mining Company High-resolution X-ray Computed Tomography (HRXCT) provides imagery of the interior of rock specimens. This new technique, advanced by researchers at the University of Texas at Austin, has been used to create threedimensional imagery of ore samples in the Cripple Creek Mining District, Colorado for a variety of studies. HRXCT, unlike conventional medical CAT-scanning, can resolve extremely small details—down to a few tens of microns in size. The Cripple Creek Mining District is centered on a circular-shaped, Oligocene-aged, alkaline volcanic complex that covers just over 7 square miles. The complex is surrounded by Precambrian rocks (biotite gneiss, granodiorite, quartz monzonite, granite). Regional tectonic extension at the intersection of these four Precambrian rock units localized the volcanic activity. Laccoliths, cryptodomes, dikes, and sills composed of syenites, phonolites, phonotephrites, and lamprophyres were formed at shallow depths. The mineralization at the Cripple Creek Mining District is characterized by high-grade gold-telluride veins and lowgrade disseminated gold and gold tellurides. High-grade gold mineralization is associated with major structural zones and also occurs as sheeted vein zones. Underground mining operated in the district from 1891 until the 1960s. A small amount of underground mining is currently taking place in the district today. Small-scale surface mining, using the heap-leach method, started in 1971 and was followed by large-scale, low grade, surface mining at Cripple Creek & Victor Gold Mining Companyʼs (CC&V) Cresson project in 1994. The project is expected to continue operating into 2012. CC&Vʼs gold production for 2006 was 283,000 ounces. CC&V reached an important milestone in August, 2007 when it passed 3 million ounces of produced gold. HRXCT technology was applied to samples collected from high-grade gold zones. HRXCT scans sense differences in X-ray absorption due to differences in density within the sample and emphasizes these density variations. The digital information is processed from each ore sample, producing a series of two-dimensional images or "slices” of the sample. These series of scans are then stacked in order to generate a three-dimensional data set that will render the rock nearly transparent so that the interior can be seen. These images can be rotated, sliced, and viewed from any angle—allowing a three-dimensional analysis and measurement of internal features. These three-dimensional HRXCT investigations of ore samples examine grain-scale relationships between gold and associated ore minerals, reveal spatial
GPOC The Prospector’s Quill Vol. 38 No.8

distribution of mineral grains in rocks, and provide insight regarding the nature of structural features and their relationship with gold distribution (preferred mineralization sites). These studies contribute to the understanding of hydrothermal ore-forming systems. A three-dimensional image was made of an exploration drill core approximately 3.25 inches in diameter and 9 inches long in order to evaluate the economic potential of the exploration target. The image of the opaque rock was nearly transparent with gold-tellurides appearing as red and yellow specks clustered in a single plane. The variation in color of the gold grains is a function of their size and their composition (generally calaverite, sylvanite, or native gold) As a result, the gold content of this piece of drill core is estimated to range between 8 and 23 ounces per ton. HRXCT technology provides a new way to image rock specimens and has the potential to help understand the emplacement mechanisms that result in high-grade veins and may assist in targeting new resources in ore districts. The evaluation of HRXCT applications in mining, ore studies, and precious metal recovery is continuing. Steven Veatch. Throughout his career as a geoscientist, Steven Veatchʼs research has focused on Colorado geology and mining history. He has conducted educational earth science programs throughout the Pikes Peak region. With colleagues and students from across the nation, he has studied a diversity of earth science topics, including climate change, glaciation, and Coloradoʼs fossil record. Steve is an adjunct professor of earth science at Emporia State University where he received an MS in earth science. He has written over 100 articles and professional papers on geology. Steve is from a pioneering Teller and Boulder County mining family.

Florissant Fossil Beds Seminars by Steven Veatch
http://www.nps.gov/flfo/forteachers/seminar-series.htm Aug 20                  Field trip: Garden of the Gods and " " Red Rock Canyon. CRIPPLE " " CREEK PARK AND REC   Aug 27                  Seminar:  Garden of the Gods and " " Red Rock Canyon. FRIENDS " " OF THE FLORISSANT FOSSIL " " BEDS Sep 10                   Greater Mining District of " " Alma, Colorado  COLO PRES " " ON THE ROAD Sep 12                   Greater Mining District of " " Alma, Colorado  TOWN OF " " ALMA   Oct 1                     Field trip: Ecology of Dinosaurs " " (Dino Ridge), date pending Nov 5                    Teaching / writing with a " " BLOG. CO School of Mines " " class, date pending

 

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PROSPECTING THE INTERNET

Consumer Fraud Reporting
While not a government website there are several links to government agencies. Additional information is provided on how to handle a variety of different scams including: identity theft, mail scams, check scams, requests for money in e-mails, etc.

http:// www.consumerfraudreporting.org/ reporting.php South Park 1875 Map http://www.parkcoarchives.org/index.html Park County Historical Maps http://www.parkcoarchives.org/index.html US Historic Mining Photos by State Great mining history and pictures. http://miningartifacts.homestead.com/ColoradoMines.html Cripple Creek and Victor gold Mining Company http://www.ccvgoldmining.com/ccvmodernmining.html Tours http://www.ccvgoldmining.com/ contactsearch.html All that glitters is indeed gold! http://www.adn.com/2011/07/23/1982529/all-thatglitters-is-indeed-gold.html American Metal Detecting Association (AMDA) has been dissolved effective MAY 1, 2011. http://www.amdaonline.net/ Britain's largest treasure hoard found in a back garden in Wigan http://www.thespoof.com/news/spoof.cfm? headline=s1i98202 Award winning treasure found in Wing was used by Roman criminals http://www.bucksherald.co.uk/news/local-news/ award_winning_treasure_found_in_wing_was_used_by _roman_criminals_1_2889061 Lost Treasure Tube http://www.losttreasure.tv/ This is a free online Magazine called The Relic Hunter http://www.relic-hunting.com/

g d learnin loring an s for exp e Resourc n.org/ associatio ties: nd locali inghistory a in x ://www.m istory.asp tion: http ek.co.us/H ry Associa ing Histo ripple-cre .c Min ttp://www ry page: h : http:// reek histo mps page Cripple C mining ca ns and ghost tow s.edu/ s.com/ Colorado side.mine hosttown oloradog s: http://in tion www.c ial collec ines spec hool of M Sc : http:// Colorado hive r Thread” istory_Arc nd “Silve ”a Mining_H Gold Belt lorado’s “ rough Co ves th enicScenic dri odot.info/travel/sc olorad www.c ris Mill dation, Pa m/paris_mill.htm lma Foun A on.co afoundati http://alm

loradoʼs about Co

mining h

istory

“In June, 1887, the 'Mining and Engineering Journalʼ of New York, reviewing the fruitage of placer mining in Colorado from the earliest times to 1866, mainly in Park, Lake and Summit counties, gave the following absurd estimates of the yields of the more prominent gulches and bars: Tarryall Creek $1,250,000 Gold Run $1,500,000 Montgomery Gulch $500,000 French Gulch $1,600,000 California Gulch $2,500,000 Illinois Gulch $500,000 Cache Creek and tributaries $350,000 Hoosier Gulch $200,000 Colorado Gulch $900,000 Other localities $3,500,000 Buckskin Joe $1,600,000 Swan River and tributaries $3,000,000 Total $17,400,000”
History of the State of Colorado. Frank Hall, The Blakely Printing Company, Chicago.1895. Page 265 In this newsletter, GPOC provides links and references to other websites.  GPOC has no control over information at such sites hyperlinked or referred to.  These links and references are being provided for the convenience of the readers, and GPOC does not endorse and is not responsible or liable for the content, nature, or reliability of any linked or referenced website or any link contained in a linked or referenced website.    GPOC takes no responsibility for monitoring, updating, supplementing, or correcting any information on any linked or referenced website and makes no representation or warranties regarding such information.

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Paris Mill

1930s. Operating the tram. Credit: Park County (Chihuahua Mining Co.)

On a recent excursion up Buckskin Gulch I was pleased to observe that the Paris Mill had been gated and no trespassing signs were posted by the Park County Sheriff. In past years we have observed people rummaging around the mill, perhaps removing items of historical significance. The historical past of Colorado is being lost to the elements and vandals so I was pleased to observe some efforts to preserve this site. While the mill is easily accessible from the nearby road, the Paris Mine hangs precariously above and is inaccessible. Once an important site for processing gold ore from the mines above Alma, this multi-level structure is now languishing at 11,000 feet. Constructed in 1894, the mill is one of Park Countyʼs most significant historic mining resources, is a Park County Historic Landmark, and is eligible for both the National and State Registers of Historic Places. Park County recently secured a conservation easement on the mill and surrounding 265 acres that supports a rare alpine plant community. In 2004, Colorado Preservation, Inc. listed the Paris Mill as one of Coloradoʼs Most Endangered Places. Three different “stamps” were used to crush and grind ore inside the mill representing several generations of processing technology. A steam engine originally drove the drive shaft assembly until 1900s when the operation was converted to steam-electric. Located about three miles west of Alma in Buckskin Gulch, the mill is a large, sprawling structure with aerial tramway connections to mines on Loveland Mountain and Mount Bross, hundreds of feet above. These mines were the richest strikes in the Alma Mining District, producing gold, silver and lead ore for decades. But time and unstable metal values forced the mill to close in 1957, following over 50 years of operation. The mill was activated again briefly during the 1970s by the Mount Bross Mining Company to reprocess old mine tailings, but was effectively abandoned shortly thereafter.

Paris Mill. August 1936. Alma Gold Placers, Inc. Credit: Park County (Chihuahua Mining Co.)
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Kenosha Pass and Hall Valley
Listed on the State Register of Historic Properties, the Kenosha Pass Railroad Station site is important for its association with the D,SP&P railroad's crossing of Kenosha Pass. While detained for an hour at Kenosha Pass in 1896, Walt Whitman wrote: “At this immense height the South Park stretches fifty miles before me. Mountainous chains and peaks in every variety of perspective, every hue of vista, fringe of view, in nearer, or middle, or far-dim distance, or fade on the horizon." Modern day travelers can visit  the roadside exhibit on the east side of the road or walk the restored rail bed and wye at this interpretive site.  Also at the summit is a pond where migratory waterfowl can be viewed from a bird watching platform.  Ducks, elk, deer  and many other animals are drawn to this natural "watering hole" throughout summer and fall. Founded in 1883 in what later became known as Hall Valley, the community of Dake produced charcoal to fuel ore smelters in Denver and Leadville.  Nearly 300 area residents were employed felling trees or tending the 27 charcoal kilns. Another 12 charcoal kilns lined the railroad tracks in W e b s t e r.  H i g h w a y 2 8 5 h a s replaced the tracks and traces of the charcoal kilns are difficult to find in Hall Valley, west of Grant. In 1898 William Watts Hooper was appointed forest ranger after the forest in Hall Valley was nearly s t r i p p e d b a r e .  W i t h p r o p e r management by Mr. Hooper and his successors, the forest in this area is completely regenerated. Poet Walt Whitman wrote these words from this location in 1879... “I jot these lines literally at Kenosha summit, where we return, afternoon, and take a long rest, 10,000 feet above sea-level. At this immense height the South Park stretches fifty miles before me. Mountainous chains and peaks in every variety of perspective, every hue of vista, fringe the view...so the whole “Western world is, in a sense, but an expansion of these mountains...”

THE NAMING OF HALL VALLEY by Christie Wright Park County Newsletter Issue II April 2011

Hall Valley, located on the east side of Kenosha Pass, was one of the many mining districts coined in the 1800s in Park County. Given its thirty-five mile distance from the county seat of Fairplay, it was not as widely publicized as the Mosquito Range mining districts such as the Buckskin Joe or the Consolidated Montgomery Mining Districts. In addition, the Hall Valley mines were not quite as productive as the Mosquito area mines, although several individual mines were very successful. Hall Valley had several names: Hall's Gulch, Hallville and Hall City. It was named after Colonel Jairus Wm. Hall, who first came to Colorado in approximately 1868 after completing a brilliant Civil War career in the 4th Michigan Volunteer Infantry. According to his biography in the American Biographical History of Eminent and Self-made Men (Michigan Volume) 1878 by Wm. H. Gordon, Jairus Hall joined up in that state, quickly progressing through the ranks to attain that of Brigadier-General, although he always preferred to be called "Colonel." He was involved in over ninety battles including Gettysburg, Antietam and Nashville. He was never absent without leave and never reprimanded. Initially settling in Georgetown, Colorado, the Colonel managed a bank for two years and learned the mining business, continually seeking to improve himself. This was re-warded by his election to the Upper House of the Territorial Legislature; he was then appointed Chairman of the Finance and Penitentiary committees. Colonel Hall married in 1872 and his brother, Cassius "Cash" Hall also joined him in the mountains. The Halls then went over the range to mine in the area just south of Webster Pass. This valley gradually acquired the Colonel's name due to his prominence and leadership qualities, although a man named Scott Shaw previously prospected there. The Whale Mine, located just beneath the Continental Divide, was the best mine, purchased by the Colonel in 1872 for $20,000. Investors were garnered and the Hall Valley Silver Lead Mining and Smelting Company formed. They built a smelter below the mine and a tramway system was installed, but unfortunately the composition of the ore made it difficult to process. The Colonel eventually left Colorado and died in England in 1903 at the age of 63. Due to its remote location, the valley and town itself had its share of "roughs"—drifters who followed mine work and were tough characters. At one point, even the Colonel's life was in danger, forcing him to shut down the local saloons. On August 12, 1873, two of these characters named Michael Boice and Henry Hall (no relation) threatened the townspeople with guns and were promptly restrained and locked in a storeroom overnight for "safekeeping." The intent was to escort them to the Fairplay jail at morning's first light; however, this never happened. The two were hustled out of their confines in the middle of the night and lynched by vigilantes about half a mile down the valley. According to one of Henry Hall's friends at the time, Henry was buried "near the mouth of the gulch." Today, Hall Valley on County Road 42 off Highway 285, just east of the base of Kenosha Pass. A bumpy gravel road runs for five miles to two National Forest Service campsites: the Hall Valley Campground and Handcart Campground. Part of this road is private property and must be respected.

GPOC The Prospector’s Quill Vol. 38 No.8

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