United States. Congress. Senate. Committee on Fore.

Compilation of reports of Committee ... 1789-1901, First Congress, first session, to Fifty-sixth Congress, second session .. online

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Haciibnoa, La Abra Siltxr Mining Co.,

TayolHta, FO'y^, 1866.
Jos. G. RiCB, Esq. :

Dbar Sib: In reply to your favor of yesterday I beg to say that I have no axes to
spare, that is, to sell, but I send you by the bearer four, which you can return when
yours are to hand.

I have made an order to Durango for about twenty-five cargas, consisting of pow-
der, tallow, and flour, which order left Gavilanes to-day by the regular courier. I
hope your order may reach Durango in time to come with the same train.
Tour friend,

Th. J. Babtholow,

Supmintendent,



The Dvranfo SUver Mimb to La Ahra Silver UMiif Co.
14 For 4 American axes (handled), at |5 $20.00

P. 8. — I will not have sufQcieut money to pay my hands this week, and will
thank you to let me have $2 to $250 on Friday. If yon can not get a ohanoe to send
it over let me know and I will send a messenger for it. I also write to Learago for
a small amoont.

The 8anU89ime THnidad AUning Co. Mi of " La Abra SUver MMef Co."

2 p's manta, 31f, 31i=4»i vs., at 37i 23.72

10 lbs. coffee, at 6oc 6.50

Amount $30.22



Haciknoa, La Abua Silvkr Mining Co.,

TayoUiUiy Fdrruary 27, 1886.
A. B. Eldbr, Esq.:

Dear Sir: Above I hand you bill of mania and coffee, atii't $^U).22 to yonr debit.
I have no powder to spare ; have ordered 2,000 pounds from Durango, and fear I will
be entirely ont before it arrives. I think Mr. Bice received a lot lately. Perhaps he
can spare you some.

1 would bo glad for you to ride up next Sunday, or any other day soon thai may suit
your convenience, as I deuire to havo a talk with you on the snbject of furnishing
you with the supplies you are getting of us, to understand from you your arrange-
ments, and how you desire to settle for them and the time necessary for this purpose,
as well as to talk of other matters connected with business.
Your fr'd,

Th. J. Babtholow,

8u.periniendeni.

Hacibnda, La Abba Silvrr Min'o Co.,

Tayoiata, FeVy 2fi, 1866.
Jos. G. Bicb, Esq're,

San DimoB:
Dbab Sib: I beg to acknowledge receipt of your favor of this date, and in reply
beg to say that I am obliged to yon for the offer of the loan of your ** Boletas'' ; bnt i i



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THE LA ABRA SILVER MININQ COMPANY. 245

k And myself under the neoeeeity of lesortinff to this class of cnrrenoy mv own might
answer the purpose; yet I do not wish to cu> this so long as I can avoid it. I have,
however, for the purpose of making change, issued the fractional narts of a dollar
to a limited extent when absolutely necessary. If Mr. Grassie should get back and
you can let me have $100 or $150 by Saturday or Sunday it will be thankfully re-
ceived.

Some weeks since I sent to Santiago Papasquia for a lot of mules to pack for mu.
Some came promptly, and are now in my employ, and to-day about 70 more arrived,
all of which I fear I can not emplov, yet think I need 20 to 30 of them to finish up my
freight from below. If you need the rest, and will come over to-morrow or next ilay,
we can make, doubtless, a satisfactory arrangement to use the whole lot iu copartuor-
ship, as it is desirable, in my opinion, to retain them. If, however, this does not suit
yon, I will use all in transporting salt and com from below. Please attend to this
promptly.

Tour i^end,

Ta. J. Babtholow, 8^pl't.

Tatoltita, Mmrch 4, 1866.
William Soott, Esq.,

OniKerotid:
DsAB Sib : The bearer of <his letter has a pack-train of sixty-four mules which J
have hired to pack com for Mr. Rice and myself from San Ignacio. Mr. Rice has con-
tracted, throueh Mr. Loaiza, for a considerable quantity of corn, and as I had en-
gaged this mme train, and Mr. Rice, being unable to hire any himself, has agreed
that in coosideratien of my letting him have the use of one-half of these mules he

lets me have one-half of the com.
15 On receipt of this letter vou will return to San Ignacio with the train. There

you will meet Loaisa and Mr. Grassie, who will assist yon in the loading, and
Mr. Grassie will more fully explain to you the arrangement. When loaded, you
will accompany the train, and at La Pnerta you will divide it, sending one- half to
San Dimas and bringinff the remainder to this place. Mr. Grassie starts to-day
from San Dimas for San Ignacio.
Tour Mend,

Th. J. Babtholow,

Smperk^endent



Numtra SeHara Giutdalupe Co. bought of La Abra Silver Mining Co,

1866.

FeVy 7. To41b6. Bngar,at50o 2.00

" 2 lbs. coffee, at 7fto 1.50

12. *• 4 q'res paper, at 25o 1.00

16. " 4 •' do., at25c 1.00

26. " 2 lbs. Mexican steel, at 30o Co

$6.10
Beo^d payment.

Th. J. Babtholow,

SnporimUndont,

Haobmiml, La Abba Silvxb M'o Co.,

TagoUita,Marokl,im^



Haoibmda, La Abba Silvbb M'o Co.,

Tayomto,A/aroA7,1866.
Michael Kirch, of the city of San Francisco and State of California, is hereby an-
thorijEed and empowered to cast the vote for the stock owned and held by this com*
pany, vix, five hundred and fifty shares (550) of the capital stock of Nuestra Se&ora
ce Gnadiuupe Silver Mining Co., at the general election for officers of said company
to be h^d in the city of San Francisco in this month, and also at any other election
which mi^ be held subsequently until^this proxy shall be revoked.

Th. J. Babtholow,

Suptriniendemt.



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246 THE LA ABBA SILVER MINING COBIPANT,

Hacienda, La Abra Silver M'a Co.,

TayolHta, March 1, 1866.
David J. Qabih, Esq. :

Deab Sir: Confirming my respects of FeVy 6th, when I wrote you fully regarding
my operations np to that date, I now beg to report that the wheel pit is completed,
the shaft and flanges are now being set, the arms, backets, and in &ct all the wood<
work is about completed and ready to set up. The tail race, which is four feet below
Castillo's, IS being excavated as rapidly as possible ; twenty feet of it finished, over
which a brick arch is now being turned: the foundation for the battery is dug, and
the timbers for same are now being put m ; the most of the grading is done, and tho
rest is progressing sufficiently to keep out of the way of the mechanics : besides, fully
two-thirds of the rest of our timber is delivered and dressed and ready for framing.

Dr. Hardy and Mr. Griffith are on the road with about 150 mules. Mr. Griffith
writes me fh>m San Ignacio that aH our machinery and the stock of goods I purchased
last month in Masatlui are loaded and on the way. I expect their arrival to-morrow
or next day.

Ton will bear in mind that our machinery, 80 tons, arrived in Masatlan Deo'r 13th ;
the country through which it was compelled to be packed occupied by the Liberal
troops and the thrater of military operations. This army had taken possession of all
the pack animals in the country between here and the port, and therefore I was com-
pelled to send to the vidnity oi the city of Durango for mules to transport the mill :
and when the animals were obtained I was under the necessity of sending to Gen'l
Corrona for his protection and a guarantee that the men and animals in my employ
should not be taken by his fbrces. All this I obtained, but not without difficulty,
and with all these difficulties I have in less than three months succeeded in getting
all our machinery and a fair stock of goods delivered at the hacienda. Every
16 American I talked with, and a number of Mexicans, inclading Messrs. Echegn-
ran, Quintana 6l Co., acLvised me to store the machinery in Mazatlau until the
ooontry was in a more pacific state ; but this did not suit me, and by harder work than
I ever before performed, seconded and assisted by the gentlemen in our employ, we have
surmounted all obstacles, ani you can assure the company that if the revolution does
not now stop our operations, and I do not believe it will, their mill will be completed
and crushing ore in June.

Whilst I have devoted all the energy and industry I could command in the trans-
portation of our machinery, and keeping the builders at work, I have not neglected
the mines. From '*La Luz'' we have taken out 400 tons, and the quantity mined
weekly has been increased to an average of 30 tons, and at the same time we have
succeeded in reducing the cost delivered on the paUo to $15 per ton. In this mine we
have found a small vein, an oflEshoot from the main vein, which is now about six
inches wide, which is producing with two hands (no more can be worked in it) from
three to four hundred pounds per week of ore of surprising richness. If the opinion
of the Mexicans, including Dn. Ignacio Manfasses, is worth anything, these say it
will yield |1 to the pound. I think this an overestimate, but I woiud not be sor-
prised if it should assay $1,000 to the ton. I have put np about two pounds of it,
which I will send with this letter, by Wells. Fargo 6l Co.'s Express. On its receipt I
would be glad if you would have it assayed and report the result. This ore we put
up as fast as mined in gunny sacks and store it in the ware room. * ' El Christo " mine
turns out greatly better than I anticipated. While working in the new tunnel and
sinking the shaft fiK>m the old works to inteneot it, we are taking out from ten to
fifteen tons a week. We expect the tunnel to steike the vein in thirty feet, when the
quantity of ore will be more than doubled, and when the shaft and tunnel has been
made to intersect each other this mine cannot fail to vield finom 60 to 70 tons per week,
ample to keep the mill employed day and night. The ore from this mine^ looks re-
markably well. In many pieces virgin gold is plainlv seen with the naked eye. Mr.
Cnllius, our head miner, says he has never seen sucn a mine in all his experience in
California and Mexico, and he has been working in mines for fourteen years. The
vein isisix feet wide and the ore uniform, requiring but little assorting, and besides,
it is easy to blast and ^et out, and is, I think, less rebellious than any ore we have.
I expect to commence in another mine in a week or two, for, as I promised to have
1,000 tons of ore on the patio by the time the mill is completed, I am determined to do
it, and at the same time to have the mines in such a condition that there can be no
possibility that the mill when once started will ever have to stop for the want of ore.
So far from this being the case I am fully convinced that if our mines are worked with
proper system and judgment the company will, in the next twelve months, be com-
pelled to erect another mill with twice the capacity of the present one to enable it to
work the ores which by that time will be produced, and when La Abra tunnel shall
have been cut to its intersection with La Abra vein at least 100 stamps with the req-
uisite number of pans, ^kc., will be required.

As you are aware, I have always been sanguine with regard to the success of this
entexprise and the great value of the property possessed by the company, and if at
any Idme there has oeen any cause whatever to doubt its snooeasi active work npon it



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THE LA ABBA. SILVER MINING COMPANY. 247

has diasipated that doubt. Bevolntion and war or criminal bad management alone can
oanae a lailnre. I am full; oonTinoed that within quite a short period after our works
are completed and mnning it will be demonstrated that this company owns one of the
best mining properties on the continent of America if not in the world, but this, like
all other yaluable property, will require close and constant attention, as well as sys-
tematic Judgment and integrity, to realize the profits that onght to be obtained from,
it, as all may be frittered away by dishonesty or bad management, and instead of the
property paying a large profit, if it should be managed like some other mining proper-
ties in tnis country, it may result in loss, but this can, in my opinion, only occur nom
the causes mentioned aboye. The thousand tons of ore which I will bave mined when
the mill is ready to start will, in my opinion, fully reimburse the company for the
entire expenses of the mill and all other improvements which I have been compelled
to make.

Soon after I commenced laying in my supplies for the coming rainy season, I found
that we did not have near enough warehouse room to store them. The com room was
soon filled. Salt and lard filled up the comer room, and beans, powder, and groceries
filled the third to oyerflowing, besides the back shed was soon piled up with every-
thing we could put into bags, so as to render them secure against damage or theft,
and yet not half enough was had to supply us during the long rainy season.

I was therefore compelled either to raise the hac'da another story or build other
store-rooms. The former I found to be attended with much diflQcnlty as well as ex-
posure to loss in the event of rain, so after refiection I concluded to build a row of one-
story rooms Just opposite and in fh>nt of the present building, leaving a street between
the two of 30 feet in width. I then made a contract with Judge Haight, an American,
to put up a building 101 feet in length by 18 feet wide (in the clear), to be built
17 of adobes, the walls to be IGfeet high, the roof of tiles, and the floors of brick,
to be divided into five rooms, he to furnish all the materials except the wood ;
this I am to furnish. He took the contract for $875 and to pay his board while engaged
in its construction. This I regard as very low, and am fearful he will lose money on
it, but he is doing the work with great rapidity ; will have the most of it completed
in a month. The first room next to the race I design for an office ; this will be 18 feet
square ; the next, 18 x 36, will be the store, and the next three are intended for ware-
rooms. When completed I will take the old store for a sleepi ng-room for our employ^.
At present we are sleeping on the patio, as we have not house-room for more than
half a dozen.

I have in store 200 cargas corn, 100 cargas beans, 100 cargas salt, some |2,000
worth lard, besides a large stock of flour, powder, drill steel, etc., and will require, in
addition, 700 cargas more com, 500 cargas salt, and if dry-goods continue to sell as
fast as they have for the past month, will have to have $10,000 more of them. Our
sales range from $80 to $100 per day cash, besides what we sell to our employees, which
is ohtfged on the books. The store under good management will, I think, yield a net
profit of twenty thousand dollars per annum, but it requires close and constant at-
tention, for the reason that these people buy everything of general consumption in
-very small quantities, usually from 3c. to 6ic. at a time. I bave seen women stand at
the counter and make three purchases of cheese of 3c. each ; thev do this under the
impression that they get more in the aggregate by buying in such small quantities ;
yet when they come to purchase a dress, a rebozo, or shawl, they will oheerfhlly pay
the highest price if they have the money, and rarely complain of the prices asked.
Oar staple goods and provisions yield a profit ot at least. 50 per cent., and fimoy dry-
goods from 60 to 100 per cent., and the most difficult task 1 have now is to keep an
ample supply on hand to meet the demand.

In my last letter I informed you that ono of mv employees, Wm. Qrove, esq., fbimerly
of Valine Co., Mo., was missing, and I feared had been waylaid and murdered : since
then my worst fears have been realized, for after a search of two weeks his body was
found buried in the sand on the bank of the Piastla Biver, some ten miles above the
mouth of Candalaro Creek, near where he had been murdered. At the time of the dis-
covery of the body it was in such an advanced state of decomposition that it was im-
possible so ascertain the manner in which he had been kUled. His mule, pistol, and
clothing have not yet been found ; the mule is, however, likely to turn up, as it had our
haoienoa brand ''U.S." on the left shoulder. These facts were promptly laid before the
commander of the liberal troops at San Iguacio, SefiorD. Jesus Vega, who took great
interest in the matter and promised to use all the means in his power to diseover the
murderers and brin^ them to justice, and he has had arrested andplaced in confinement
two men charged )ivith the crime, and his soldiers are in pursuit of the third. These we
are assured will be tried by court-martial, and if found guilty will be summarily ex-
ecuted. Mr. Grove, I think, lost his life bv imprudence in talking; he had resided in
Mexico for six or seven years, spoke the language quite fluently, and ought to have
understood the character of the people. I had nominally purchased a train of pack
mules in Mr. Grove's name and sent nim to San Iguacio to obtain a permit for them to
pack for me, and a guarantee that they would notbe taken by the^umy ; he succeeded
in getting these dooumei ts and was on his way home to take poss e ss i on of the mules

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248 THE LA ABBA SILVER MININQ COMPAHT.

and start them to packing; he passed the night previons to his death at the house
of one Meliton, at Teohamato, the place where yon will recollect we stopped for dio-
ner on onr first trip op, whore we nad quite a qaaotity of watermeloiiB. This man
Meliton had a bad repntation, was some years ago convicted of miirder and robbery
and sentenced to be executed, but got clear by bribery. Grove told this man of his
purchase of the pack train, and that he was to pav $4,000 for it, and was on his way
to take possession of it and start it to work, thus leaving the impression that he bad
this snm of money with him. Now, whilst I do not think that Meliton committed
tbe murder, I have no donbt of his having planned it and arranged for it to be done,
and the imprudence of Mr. G. in telling this man the circumstances above mentioned,
in my opinion, was the cause which led to his murder, which was effected between
Techamate and Tenchuguilita. about midway between the two places.

You will cause to be iforwaraed to me as soon as issued the certificates of stock in
favor of Messrs. Hardy d& Wilson, which I will deliver to the parties as soon as all
is paid up. The original stock to them of 122,000 is to be divided equally between
Jas. M. Wilson and Irby Y. Hardy ; the $5,000 subscribed in New York by 1. V. Hardy
is paid infuU^ and the certificate is to be issued to him. Mr. Wilson agrees to pay in
this month one-half of his new subscription of $:).000, and the balance next month.
Send all these certificates to me by next steamer ana I will deliver them to the parties.

My stock is paid, but the company will retain my certificate nntil my return. Mr.
Grimth has given me no instructions.regarding his certificate. In my last I wrote yon
what he said about payment of the balance due. I have not yet gotten onr title

Sapers from Durango; as soon as they are to hand I will make out and forward the
eed yon have requested.

As I advised yon in my last, I have drawn upon yon in favor of the Bank of Call-
18 fomia for ($10,000) ten thousand dollars, which draft will go to San Francisco
by the steamer of the 16th inst. The most of this money I expect to use in
the purchase of salt and corn. Will start the mules, now engaged in packing ma-
chinery, to bringing up these supplies as soon as they arrive with the balance of
the mill, which will be in a day or two. When our mill is runninff we will not use
less tiian five hundred pounds of salt daily, and as none can be packed in June, July,
Aug., and September, and perhaps October, it is absolutely necessary that enough be
in store to run ns during the rainy season. To keep us fully supplied with this neces-
sary article will require during the packing season a train of at least 100 mules, and
another train of an equahunmber will be necessary for corn and panocha. All these
matters will require constant and assid'ous attention from your superintendent, for a
failure to obtain an ample quantity of these supplies for the rainy season will not
only involve a very heavy expense, but will greatly retard, if not absolutely stop, your
work. If the latter should occur you will lose your miners, and much time will be
required to obtain a new set, for these men are so improvident that if they are without
work for two weeks at a time they and their families are in danger of starvation, then
mutiny and revolution is the inevitable result.

In my last letter I reported that I had paid $1,100 assessment to the Guadalupe Co.
Since then I am informed that yon had sent a check to the company in San Francisco
for one assessment of $550, and Mr. Oorrell has paid back to me this snm, conseooently
I have only paid $550 on this account. This company's mine is in a good fix, tLe tan-
nel has intersected the vein, and they are now taking out a fair quantity of good ore,
but I think at too heavy expense under the present management. I have written to
the pres't of the co. that a change was absolutely requisite in the management here,
and asked him to send a competent man to take charge of their business here— <fne
that would work in harmony with us and regard the interests of both as being identi-
cal, which is the case. But Mr. Correll does not appear to regard the matter in this
lignt, and instead of assisting me to manage and control the population (Mexican)
he endeavors to thwart my antnority , and has in consequence given me no little trouble
lately. However, I have told him plainly that he must change his course or he or I,
one, would have to leave. Since then I have got along better, but still by no means
satisfiftctory.

Mr. Kirch, one of the trustees of this company, who spent nearly two months
here, fuUy agreed with me in my views of management, and promised me to urge a
change. I advised the company to send Mr. Kircn here as superintendent, and hope
they will do so. By this steamer I fbrward to Kirch a proxy authorizing him to vote
the stock owned by our company at the general election to be held in San Francisco
the last of this month : this will enable him, I think, to oust Correll, and I am very
anxious that this should be done as speedily as possible.

I think by next month, if no accident occurs, I will be enabled to report an amount
of work completed that will be eminently satisfactory to the company. I, of coarse,
don't know what view the company entertains of my progress thus fer with tae great
diifloalties I have had to surmount, but I can assure them that my success has oeen
fkr beyond mv expeetations.

Toar frd, Th. J. Bartholow,



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THE LA. ABBA SILVER MINING COMPANT. 249

Haciemda, La Abra Silykr Minino Co.,

Ta^MUg, March 7, .866.
MiCHAKL Kirch, Esq., Sam Franeisco :

Dear Sir : Herewith I eocloee you a proxy authoriziDg yoa to vote the stock owned
by this company at the general election to be held, as I nnderstand from Mr. Correll,
▼cry soon, and of course you will vote it as yoor best Judgment will dictate, for on
this subject I have no instructions to ffive.

Hoping soon to have the pleasure ofseeing you here with authority to take charge
of the business of your company,
I am, &c.,

Th. J. Bartholow, 8»pt



Haoibnda, La Abra Silver M'o Co.,

TayolHta, March 7, 1866.
Messrs. Echsquran, Quintana A Co., MoMatlan :
Gentlemen : One of my mechanics desires to make a remittance of two hundred
and fiffy dollars to his brother residing in Scotland, and I will thank you to in-
19 vest this sum is a sterling bill, on London or Liverpool, payable to the order
of John Weir, and inclose same in a letter to him directed as follows: John
Weir, bskker, Lamlash, Island of Arran, Scotland. Ton will also please inclose the
letter herewith to the same party. Thissum you will place to the debit of my account.
Mr. James M. Wilson, tile bearer of this, goes to Mazatlan with a small pack-train,
to bring up some goods which I expect have arrived by this steamer ; please have
them passed at the custom-house and delivered to Mr. Wilson as sx>eedily as may, so
he will not be unnecessarily detained with his mules on expense in Mazatlan.

Yon will also do me the favor to forwanl, by Mr. Wilson, one thousand dollars
($1, 000), which said sum you will charge to my account. I forward by Mr. Wilson a
package of letters and a small package of silver ore, all of which please forward per
Wells, Fargo 4b Co.'s express, charging expenses to my account.

I have now on band fully four hundred tons of ore (400 tons), and am mining ovei
thirty tons per week. The ore of '* La Lnz " continues to improve in quantity and
quality. I now believe that by the time the mill is completed I will have enough ore
on hand to pay for the entire coat of the mill and improvements.



Online LibraryUnited States. Congress. Senate. Committee on ForeCompilation of reports of Committee ... 1789-1901, First Congress, first session, to Fifty-sixth Congress, second session .. → online text (page 37 of 156)