This list does not include one-half of the amount of assessments levied by well,
known companies, and several millions have been advanced in cash by capitalists
in San Francisco for prospecting and opening mines which never were heard of
except by a few who spent their money, and their friends'. A Mexican proverb
says, "It takes a mine to work a mine."
35. THE GOULD & CURRY MINE.
The following figures of the operations of the Gould & Curry company are
taken from official reports :
of ore per ton.
3 917 9'I7
$1 464 400
4 898 060
1 44Q (joo
2 395 242
Half of 1866
13 020 101
3 678 400
The mine was not opened until 1862, and before it began to pay its way the
Bum of $175,000, or $148 per foot, had been levied as assessments. The dividends
WEST OF THE ROCKY MOUNTAINS. 79
commenced in 1863, and for that year alone amounted to more than $1,000 a
foot ; and also for the next year, although very large sums were expended in
building a mill and in making other improvements. The average yield of the
ore, however, and the percentage of the dividends, decreased with each year.
The ore was nearly twice as rich in 1863 as in 1865, and the expenses in the
former year were greater than the gross receipts of the latter.
The total number of tons extracted in four years was 173,000, or a mass
of 165 feet cubic, and the bullion produced amounted to about 300 tons of 2,000
pounds of 12 troy ounces each. The expenses of the mine and mill in 1865
were the following :
Total expense at mine $609, 135 97
Under this head come the following items :
Labor at mine 298, 055 62
Contracts for tunnels, drifts, &c 37, 323 50
Lumber and timber 1 . 147, 382 92
Freight from California 11, 357 86
Total expenses at the reduction works $356, 865 81
Under this head come these items among others :
Labor 160, 260 22
Hauling ore to mill by contract 32, 489 83
Firewood 206, 749 32
Foundry work 33, 188 30
Hardware 12, 631 28
Sulphate of copper 12, 747 56
Quicksilver 9, 903 98
Salt 15,885 54
Water 10, 416 84
Oil, candles, &c 8,440 78
Freight from, California 20, 993 89
The following are further figures from the president's report for 1864:
Cost of extracting ores from mine, per ton 1 . $10 84
Cost of reducing third-class ore at Gould & Curry mill 14 46
Cost of reducing third-class ore at Custom mills 21 82
Cost of reducing second-class ore at Custom mills 50 00
Average yield of all ores reduced, per ton 50 76
Average yield of second-class ore 255 66
Average yield of third-class ore at Gould & Curry mill 44 26
Average yield of all ores reduced at Custom mills 45 12
The following is a statement of the operations and expenses of the Gould &
Curry mill, (which, however, did not reduce all the ore produced by the mine)
for the six months ending May 31, 1866 :
The pay of officers, general laborers, watchmen, teamsters, &c., was $14,354 88.
The cost of the driving power was, $10,565 87 for labor ; $85,996 for wood ;
$2,618 for sundries; $99,179 87 in all.
The cost of preparing ore for the batteries was, $8,913 23 for labor; $828 for
sundries ; $9,741 23 total.
The cost of the batteries was, $14,266 38 for labor; $4,546 for shoes, dies,
&c. ; $2,002 for sundries ; total, $20,814 38.
The cost of amalgamating was, $15,421 13 for labor ; $1,363 for retort wood ;
$12,037 for shoes and dies ; $5,794 for salt ; $12,256 for sulphate of copper;
$17,822 for quicksilver ; $2,232 for sundries ; total, $66,925 13.
The cost of repairs was, $16,424 48 for labor; $15,402 for sundries; total,
RESOURCES OF STATES AND TERRITORIES
The total expense of the mill was $79,945 97 for labor; $162,896 for ma-
terial ; total, $242,841 97.
The amount of ore delivered at the mill was 20,744 tons ; the amount amal-
gamated was 17,890 tons. The difference of 2,854 tons "shows the loss of ores
carried off in slimes."
The value of the ore and of the bullion produced was the following :
Value of ore .
$185 765 12
$639 598 21
$825 363 33
211 712 69
448 036 76
660 257 17
[The excess of gold in the "bullion produced" over that in the "value of
ore," must be accounted for by supposing that the samples assayed did not fully
represent the average value of the ore.]
The average assay per ton was $46 13 ; the average yield was $36 90 ; the
amount lost was 20 per cent. The total cost of reduction per ton amalgamated
was $13 57.
The cost of reduction per ton was $0 80.23 for officers, watchmen, and la-
borers ; $5 54.37 for driving power ; $0 55.04 for preparing ore for batteries ;
$1 16.33 for batteries ; $3 73.50 for amalgamation; $1 77.88 for repairs, and
$13 57 in all.
The expenses of the mine during the six months were the following :
The salaries of officers were $6,766, or 20 cents per ton.
The cost of extracting ore was $103,042 99, or $3 06 per ton.
The cost of prospecting and dead-work was $68,631 04, or $2 04 per ton
The cost of accessory work, $56,308 38, or $1 67 per ton.
The cost of improvements was $19,876 52, or 59 cents per ton.
The total cost of salaries of officers, extraction of ore, prospecting and dead-
work, accesrory work, and improvements was $254,624 93, or $7 56 per ton.
The amount of ore produced was 33,705 tons.
The amount of bullion produced from the Gould & Curry ore by outside
mills was $227,085 81, and the total receipts of the company for six months,
The expenses were $254,624 93 for the mine ; $243,131 97 for the Gould
& Curry mill ; $7,777 61 for assays ; $128,404 83 for reducing ores at outside
mills ; $27,285 53 for general expenses, and $6,375 76 for the boarding-house.
Total, $667,600 63.
36. THE OPHIR MINE.
The Ophir company has tried and compared the yard, the barrel, and the
pan processes of amalgamation, and the general result of their experience is
that the yard process costs $30 per ton, and loses 20 per cent, of the metal ;
the barrel process costs $28, and loses 15 or 20 per cent, of the metal; and the
pan process costs $15. per ton, and loses from 35 to 40 per cent, of the metal.
They have abandoned the yard process, as unsuited to the climate and having
no advantages ; the barrel is retained for ore yielding S90 per ton or upwards ;
and the pan is preferred for poor ore. Ore containing $150 per ton will yield,
at SO per cent., $120 to the barrel, leaving $92 after subtracting $28 in the cost
of working; whereas the same ore would give, at 65 per cent , a gross yield of
$97 50, and a net yield of $82 50 to the pan, showing an advantage of $950
per ton in favor of the barrel. By the same mode of calculation ore containing
$50 to the ton will yield $12 net to the barrel, and $17 50 net to the pan. Ore
containing $80 to the ton gives about an equal net yield to the barrel and the
WEST OF THE ROCKY MOUNTAINS.
pan. The following are the figures of some of the operations of the Ophlr com-
pany for the year ending November 30, 1864 :
$601 653 99
$519 703 38
299 825 85
248 947 65
Since -1864 the cost of barrel amalgamation has been reduced to $28 per ton.
In 1865 the barrel and pan were used, and the following figures show the
amount of bullion produced, and the sums and proportions of gold and silver
in it :
Ratio of gold.
$64 816 27
$178 747 61
$243 563 88
26 per cent
54 per cent.
The qualities of ore used in the two processes were different, but the propor-
tions of gold and silver were about the same ; and hence it appears that the
barrel loes the gold and the pan loses the silver. The value of the ore'sub-
mitted to the barrel process in 1865 was $332,273 61, and the total bullion ob-
tained, including some not represenfed in the above table, was $269,327 94,
showing a loss of $62,945 67, or 18 per cent. The bullion obtained from the
barrels was worth $1 05 per ounce, and, therefore, must have contained a con-
siderable proportion of base metal, since one-fourth in value was gold, and pure
silver alone is worth Si 33 per ounce. The pan bullion was worth $2 31 per
ounce, or more 'than twice as much as the barrel bullion.
37. THE SAVAGE MINE
At the annual meeting of the stockholders of the Savage Mining Company,
on the 10th of July, 1866, Alpheus Bull, president, submitted a report, in which
he said :
" By reference to the annual reports heretofore made I find the first ore taken
from the mine was in April, 1863. The total number of tons extracted up to
July, 1865, (26 months,) was 81,183, or 3,122 tons a month. The entire yield
of bullion from the above number of tons amounted to $3 ; 600,709 26, being
an average of $44 35 per ton.
" During these twenty-six months there was disbursed $2,939,808 76, be-
sides paying over $800,000 in dividends. For reduction alone there was paid
$1,682,701 44, almost fifty per cent, of the gross yield of the mine.
" The total production of ores for the past year was 30,653 tons, of which
there were reduced 20,535 tons, yielding bullion of the value of $1,303,852 91,
or an average of $44 14 per ton, at a cost for reduction of $16 74 per ton.
Notwithstanding there was less ore extracted during the year just ended, and the
average value per ton a little less than the preceding years, yet the net earnings of
the company are in favor of last year's operations. The cost for extraction of
ores the past year is certainly high, but this is justly chargeable to the exten-
sive improvements in building machinery and explorations in the mine, the
practical benefits of which will be derived by the stockholders at some future
H. Ex. Doc. 29 6
RESOURCES OF STATES AND TERRITORIES
The superintendent's report for the year ending on the 1st of July, 1866,
gives the following figures relative to the ore extracted :
$93 220 04
Second class ..
62 084 54
Average yield of all ore reduced, per ton, 842 38.
During the last four months preceding the date of the report the cost of re-
duction had varied from $11 69 to $12 95 per ton.
38. THE YELLOW JACKET MINE.
The following statistics of the yield of the Yellow Jacket Silver Mining
Company for the year ending July 1, 1866, are taken from the annual reports
made by the officers of the company :
218 tons first-class ore worked, yielded, per ton ... $172 05
53,307 tons second-class worked, yielded, per ton 31 00
1,479 tons sold, yielded, per ton 3 26
Average of all ore worked per toa 32 51
Gross product of bullion from ores worked, t $1, 690, 394 82
Gross product of ore sold 4 r 833 88
Total product .' 1, 695, 228 70
Assessments to the amount of $300,000 were collected, and no dividends were
declared during the year, but a debt of $379,771 was paid off and a surplus of
$142,915 remained on hand at the end of the year. Among the expenditures
are the following items :
Crushing ore at outside mills $507,438 23
Crushing ore at company's mills 352,178 81
Total cost of crushing 859,617 04
The term " crushing" here must include all the process of reduction, and the
cost is about half the total yield of the ore worked.
39. THE CROWN POINT MINE.
It appears from the annual .report of the Crown Point Mining Company for
the year ending May 1, 1866, that the recepts from the mine in that period were
$689,191 37; the number of tons reduced, 1S,259J; and the average yield per
ton $37 33. Excluding about $8,000 of assay chips and bullion sold, there
was $243,967 86 in gold and $437,207 27 in silver. The average cost of ex-
tracting the ore was $8 97. The cost of reduction is not given precisely.
40. THE HALE AND NORCROSS MINE.
The Hale and Norcross Silver Mining Company own 400 feet on the Corn-
stock lode. They commenced operations in 1862, and worked on for four years,
at great expense, before they found any considerable body of ore to- reward them.
WEST OF THE ROCKY MOUNTAINS. 83
They levied and collected assessments to the amount of $875 per foot, making
a total for the company of $350,000 invested before any return began to come
in. In February, 1866, 1,261 tons were taken out, and the amount has since
steadily increased. September yielded 2,152 tons, and the eight months from
February to September, inclusive, 16,986 tons, which produced $736,394 32 in
bullion ; an average of $43 35 per ton.
41. THE IMPERIAL MINE.
The total receipts of the Imperial Mining Company, from the beginning of its
operations to the 31st of May, 1866, were $259,133 80, including 850,000 of
assessments. The dividends paid amounted to $527,500. The following are
certain figures for the years ending May 31, 1865, and May 31, 1866 :
Tons extracted - 28, 236 34, 735
Total yield $854, 630 56 $1, 019, 275 9.1
Average yield per ton 22 14 29 90
Cost of extraction per ton 537 5 49
The bullion for 1866 was worth $2 02 per ounce on average, the fineness in
gold being .039 and in silver .942.
The cost of reducing 11,404 tons of ore at the Gold Hill mill was $8 66 per
ton, and at the Rock Point mill, (where 23,227 tons were reduced,) $10 15 per
42. THE EMPIRE MINE.
The following are extracts from a report made by Benjamin Lilliman on the
Empire mine on the 2d of December, 1864:
" Up to this time (November 30) this company have crushed, since their
organization on March 7, 1863, about 25,000 tons (of 2,000 pounds) of ores in
their own and other mills, and have received from it, for the same period, in
bullion, one million forty-three thousand seven hundred and twenty dollars and
forty-eight cents ($1,043,720 43,) as appears by the bullion receipts which I
have examined. The actual value received by the company in working their
ores has been, therefore, $40 76 per ton of 2,000 pounds. The amount lost in
tailings it is impossible to fix, but we are justified, from the general experience
of the mills working on the Comstock ores, in assuming the loss to be at least
one-thild of the total value extracted." * * * " There has never
been an assessment on the mine, nor was there any capital stock paid in. The
nominal capital was one million of dollars. But the mine has paid for every-
thing, besides paying its fortunate owners $308,000 above all costs and charges."
" If from the balance of $731. 720 48
We deduct the cost of the mill in 1863 $60, 000
Mill in Virginia City . 75, 000
New shaft and present improvements to 1864 70, 000
205, 000 00
There remains for the presumed cost of mining and milling. . . 526, 720 48"
The president of the company, in his report for the year ending November
30, 1865, says :
" The receipts of the year, from all sources, amount to the sum of $543,081 79,
and the total disbursements to $525,129 79, of which $120,000 have been paid
in dividends to stockholders." * * * * " At the mine, during the
year, the main shaft has been sunk 133 feet, and drifts run, ,-it various levels,
965 feet, consuming 554,500 fet of timber..'
RESOURCES OF STATES AND TERRITORIES
During the year 20,500 tons were extracted from the Empire mine, and the
bull ion 'produced amounted to $485,542 49, including $185,452 30 in gold and
$298.929 96 in silver. The bullion was worth $2 02J per ounce ; weighed
^40,812.20 troy ounces before melting, and 239,707.95 ounces after melting.
43. PRODUCTIVE MINES OF REESE RIVER.
The following statement of the amount of bullion produced by the mines of
Lander county, Nevada, during the quarter ending September 30, 1866, is taken
from a report by the county assessor :
Name of mine.
Great Eastern .
North River ................... ......... . ...............
Blind Ledge . . ... .. . . .. .... . ..
Othello * *
Idora ...... ................. ...... . ......
Chase & Zent
Eldorado - .............. ..................
Morgan & Mnncey - ... ........... .......... ...
Dover .... ...... .. . ...... ...... ...... ...... .. . ......
Isabella . ............
Harding &, Dickman
Providential ...... ...... .... .. . ...... ...... .... ...... ......
Savage Consol No. 1 . .
Savage Consol No 2 .- ... ... .......
44. YIELD OF VARIOUS SILVER DISTRICTS.
The total annual yield of Lander county, Nevada, (or, as it is often called,
Reese River region,) is about $900,000, and the yield of the Owyhee district in
silver is about $1,500,000 ; so that this latter is next to Virginia City among
the silver producing districts of the United States, and it has the resources to
increase its production greatly within a few years. The yield of Esmeralda
was nearly $1,000,000 in 1863, but it is now not $100,000, and the Humboldt
district does not produce more than $50,000.
45. IMPROVEMENTS IN SILVER MINING.
Although the silver mining at the Comstock lode is not in a satisfactory con-
^dition, it is at least progressive, and there is a certainty of steady improvement
for a long time. So far as the extraction of the ore is concerned, there is nothing
better anywhere. The pumping and hoisting are done by machinery of unsur-
passed excellence. A machine has been invented for lowering men with safety
WEST OF THE ROCKY MOUNTAINS. 85
into the mine, and another for framing the timbers to be used in supporting the
sides and roofs of drifts. It is in the reduction department that the chief defect
exists. For a long time most of the ore was sent to custom mills, and as they
were paid a certain sum per ton, it was their interest to reduce as much as possible
without special regard to the thoroughness. For years this was the only method
of obtaining any return from most mines ; and besides, it was in accordance with
the custom of the silver miners of Mexico, Peru, and Bolivia, where for centu-
* ries the mines and the reduction works have belonged to distinct classes. *
But in time it became evident that the most productive mines must have
reduction works of their own, and now 'they are provided with magnificent
mills,' in which tlie processes of pulverization and amalgamation are carefully
studied by many careful and competent' men ; and they will undoubtedly make
valuable contributions to the metallurgy of silver within a few years. Although
the expenditures in the large silver mines are immense, they are not extrava-
gant. The general financial affairs are very carefully studied and strictly
managed. The operations are so extensive, the amount of material consumed
is so great, and labor is so high, no small sums of money r-ufEce. The comple-
tion of the railroad from Sacramento to Virginia City will reduce the cost of
wood, and of various other important supplies, nearly or quite fifty per cent, and
will be followed by consequent reduction in the price of labor ; and the comple-
tion of the Sutro tunnel will reduce the cost of draining and ventilating the
mines and of extracting the ore. The railroad may be in running order within
a year; the tunnel will not be finished for several years at least.
RESOURCES -OF NEVADA, OREGON, WASHINGTON TERRITORY, UTAH, MON-
TANA, AND IDAHO.
1. Historical sketch of Nevada. 2. Geography and products of Nevada. 3. Mines and
mineral resources of Nevada. 4. Mining property, &c. 5. General view of the mines
of Nevada, Oregon, Washington Territory, Utah, Montana, and Idaho.
1. HISTORICAL SKETCH OF NEVADA.
Boundaries. The State of Nevada, erected from the former Territory of
Nevada, extends easterly and westerly from tjie 37th to the 43d meridian west
from Washington, and from the 42d degree of north latitude to Arizona, hav-
ing Oregon and Idaho on the north, Utah on the east, Aiizona on the south, and
mines and the opulence of the tescutndores (amalgamators,) by whom these extensive
buildingswere raised. Few or none of them possessed a sufficiency of water to work their
machinery, for which purpose mules were employed, and .14,000 'of these animals were in
daily use (to work the arrastras and tread the ores in the patio} before the revolution. The
rescatadores purchased their ores at the mouths of the shafts, relying entirely on their own
powers of estimating by the eye the value of the montones (heaps) exposed for sale in such
a manner as not to make a disadvantageous bargain. In this science they attained great
perfection ; for more fortunes were made in Glianajuato by amalgamation works than by mi-
ners themselves; while the extent to which the system was carried afforded to the successful
adventurer the means of realizing instantly almost to any amount. During the great
bonausa (rich yield) of the Valeuciana mine, sales were effected to the amount of $80,01)0
in one day ; and it is to this facility iu obtaining supplies that the rapid progress of the works
in that mine, after its first discovery, may be ascribed. Had it been necessary to erect
private amalgamation works in order to turn his new born riches to account, many years must
have elapsed before the first Count Valericiana could have derived any advantage from his
labors ; for when fortune began to smile upon them, the man who was destined in a few
years to rank as one of the richest individuals in the world did no't possess a single dollar."
86 RESOURCES OF STATES AND TERRITORIES
California on the southwest and west ; comprising within its limits an area of
80,239 square miles. This region was a portion of the territory acquired by
the United States from Mexico under the treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, belonging
previous to its transfer to the " department of Alta California." Prior to its
acquisition by our government it was inhabited only by the aboriginal races, there
being no settlements of civilized people, not even a mission, within its borders.
At the time of the discovery of silver in 1859, ten years after its first settlement
by the whites, it contained less than one thousand inhabitants, which number;
two vears later, had increased to nearly 17, 000, as appears by the census returns
taken in August, 1861 ; the estimated population of the State being at present
between thirty-five and forty thousand, at which number it has remained nearly
stationary for the past three years.
The aboriginal races. These consist of three or four principal nations,
divided into many small communities or families, sparsely scattered over the
entire country. These nations are the Washoes, inhabiting a succession of
small valleys along the western border of the State, the Pah-Utahs occupying
the balance and greater portion of the western; while the third division, the
Shoshones hold the eastern part of the State. Some have considered, and per-
haps properly, the Pannocks, a race dwelling in the northern and northeastern
portions" of the State, as a distinct nation. With the exception of the last named,
these Indians, though often at variance among themselves, are naturally peace-
ful and inoffensive, being distinguished less for their warlike propensities than