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[Written for the Herald]
WICKES. The Coming Lead ville of Montana. BY W. A. LEW 'S. In all the different enterprises that have been inaugurated in the Tenitory duriDg the past year, none have so started up to active life, with brilliant results for the mining in dustry, as the reorganization of the Alta Mon tana Company, with a capital of $5,000,000, and with capitalists engaged in it, both here and in New York, who have the energy and the means to push it to a successful issue. The first six months of the past year the works were lying idle and deserted, except by a few of the officers who had stood by it through all of its dark days. Its mines were almost abandoned, the face of the tunnels showing only barren rock, and the only evi dence of value lay in its dumps of ore, and those seemed of but little value unless some mode of reduction was furnished. The com pany was largely in debt and it was doubtful whether they had a friend. In fact the name of the company was a by-word, and to be on the popular side and in public favor all one had to do was to sneer and pour words of contempt upon the company and its mana gers. But the succeeding six months brought about a change in the appearance of the works, in the value of the mines, in the money resourses and in public opinion to such an extent that the activity at Wickes has awakened the whole Territory to new life, and will result in the next six months in bringing into this rich mining district life, energy and capital that promise to make it a second Lead ville. The New York owners, after satisfying themselves that they had a valuable property, that could be made largely remunerative by additional capital and skillful management, raised the necessary funds and sent one of their own number out to take charge and management of the property. All the old in debtedness was paid, the worxs were enlarged, remodeled and put in the most complete or der, and all done in the most substantial man ner, and so constructed that all kinds of ore could be reduced, whether by smelting, amalgamating or leaching. The mines were all started up with most astonishing and sat isfactory results—the North Pacific and Alta lodes, owned by the company, as also the Rocky Bar and David Copperfield lodes un der lease. The Alta has been opened by three tunnels. The upper is 190 feet long and about 70 feet from surface. The average width of the vein in this tunnel is from 6 to 7 feet. The Wil liams tunnel is 380 feet long and is connected with the upper workings by an incline 80 feet in length ; the vein averages about the same as the above, and in a shaft that has been sunk forty feet below is a solid body of paying ore 18 feet in width. Another, the Cole Sanders tunnel, has been run 125 feet still lower, or 375 feet from the surface, which is 118 feet in length and has struck the rich est body of ore yet found—5 feet in width and some of it assaying as high as 170 ounces per ton. Also 300 feet west of the point where the vein was discovered the Chalmers shaft has been sunk 70 feet, showing a six foot vein of ore. The Alta lode has been traced by surface openings for a distance of 2,500 feet. Dr. Ernest Grenier, mining en gineer and metallurgist, estimated—before striking ore in the Cole Saunders tunnel— that the value of ore in sight was $765,000. Lyman Rowley, the mining captain of the company, considered this estimate much be low ite real value. The Rocky Bar and David Copperfield, leased mines, are being worked and producing ores, and although not running high in silver are furnishing py rites for a flux for the smelting department at but little cost. The company has added very largely to the value of their property lately by the purchase of the valuable and widely known Comet mine, situated only four miles from the works. This mine carries an immense body of argentiferous galena ore of the quality and richness of the noted Richmond and Eureka Consolidated mines of Eureka, Nevada. It has a tunnel 600 feet long all the way on ore. A shaft 145 feet deep connects this tunnel with the surface, and e part of the way shows a body of ore 12 feet thick. Another shaft, 220 feet east of the first, has been sunk 190 feet and contains a vein of ore from 5 to 6 feet wide. With these five valuable properties, all pro ducing an abundance of rich ore, it would seem as if there was no necessity for this now independent company to seek ore from outside parties, but with a desire to develope this rich section ot country they generously propose to purchase all the ores that are of fered that they have the capacity to work, and, if necessary, to add more furnaces and other modes of reduction just as fast as the supply of ore demands it, that there may be no necessity for the shipment of ores from this section of country—only bullion. The activity at the works of the Alta Montana Company, with the wonderful development of their mines and the further purchase of mining properties, proves that they mean business. The result has been that it has started into activity all the surrounding coun try in prospecting and mining for ores; con sequently very many rich lodes in gold and silver have been discovered. The assayer of the company in one day of the in by it a made 124 assays ; silver ores running from 100 ounces to 2,870 ounces per ton in silver, and gold ores from $31 to $1,115 in gold per ton. Prospects and workings that have long laid neglected and unrepresented are now quickly located afresh, or by new parties, and the mountains and hills are black with prospectors seeking the gold and silver that has been hidden from sight these long cen turies. Among the numerous feeders to the Alta Montana Company for ores I would mention the following that are producing ores and others that are being put in condition to re sume operations. The Eureka is now being worked vigor ously by A. M. Essler, Superintendent, and is under contract for sale of the product to the Alta Montana Company. The Gregory, L. R. Nettre, Superintendent. Same as Eureka. The Minnesota, Sloane & Harper lessees. Same as above. The Lone Hand, operated by Mr. Coulter. Same as above. The Little Jennie, Red Mountain district, owned by C. B. Vaughn. Same as above. The last purchase of ore, made a few days since, was 17 tons, assay value 350 ounces to the ton. The Alta Custer, now under bond to Cole Saunders for $30,000 for Eastern capitalists shows a splendid body of ore similar to that operated by the Alta Montana Company on the Alta mine, and in fact is the west end of the same vein. This property will be active ly worked in the spring. The Dan Tucker, also under bond to Cole Saunders, is a mine that has producad largely in rich ores, assaying as high as 400 to 500 ounces in silver per ton. The last lot of ore sold to the Alta Montana Company assayed 270 ounces silver per ton. This will also be vigorously worked in the spring. The Legal Tender is also under bond to Cole Saunders. It is one of the best known mines in the Territory and has the best record of any for the richness of ores. Refer ence was made to it by Rossiter W. Raymond U. B. Commissioner of Mining Statistics, his reports to the Government, in 1873, which he says : "The heaviest galena ores contain black and gray sulphurets of silver and yields from $2,000 to $4,000 per ton The mine is well developed, having a shaft on it of 400 feet. A large quantity of ore, all of high grade, has been taken out, and $400,000 was at. one time offered for the property. This mine will again start up in the spring with machinery and capital to placé it among the most prominent and valuable of the Mon tana properties. The mine up to date has produced over $350,000. The Rumley mine, a very valuable prop erty, was lately sold under sheriff's sale to settle title and ownership. This is to be re organized under a new name with S. T. Hau ser, of Helena, and Charlemagne Tower, of Philadelphia, at its head, and will be exten sively worked in the spring. This mine has produced hundreds of thousands of dollars in the past, and is likely, under its present management, to be one of the great mines of the Territory. The Virginia Belle, owned by B. P. Mason and Dr. Brooke, is also being worked, and will be a large ore producer. The Nellie Grant, situated in the Ten Mile district, is now under legal difficulties, which will probably soon be settled, and will be shortly thereafter in active operation. The Sallie Bell, a strong vein of galena ore, owned by A. M. Holter, W. G. Clarke, and others of Helena, is a valuable mine, and will produce a large quantity of smelting ores. as of The Banner Mining Company, owning the Banner and Compromise lodes, a recent or ganization with T. J. Lowry, W. G. Clarke, Gieen Preuitt and other Helena capitalists, will vigorously work these mines and furnish the Alta Montana Company a large supply of ore. The Australia mine, owned by Col. J. A. Viall and other gentlemen. They are about forming a strong combination to not only work the property but to erect water dressing works and furnish concentrations to the Alta Montana Company. Mr. F. J. Sey mour, of New York, is interested in the en terprise, being satisfied after an examination last summer that it was one of the best and richest lodes in the Boulder district. The Belle of the Boulder, owned by Sam uel Mackey, Cole Saunders and William W. Wickes, has a large body of fine milling ore, one of the best prospects ia the district, and will be started up early in the spring. The Bismarck and Von Arnum, owned by the Bismarck Mining Company, is a valuable property, producing largely in the past, and likely to be able to furnish large quantities of good ore. The Rocker Mining Company are vigorous ly working their mines, have built a good road to the Alta Montana Company's works and expect to supply them with large quan tities ot ore in the spring. T. J. Conner is Superintendent of the company. The Nabob, owned by Samuel Mackey, Cole Saunders and Wm. W. Wickes, is situ, ated in Cataract district and furnishes very rich ore. The last strike assayed 182 ounces of silver per ton. The group of five mines, owned by Lyman Rowley & Co., in the Cat aract district, shows immense lodes of ore, which will be utilized at the works. Another group of mines in the Boulder district, known as the Emmet, Paul Jones, O'Connell and Latrobe, have all been partially developed, shows rich ore and will undoubtedly furnish ores in the future. is The Amazon, owned by Bowler & Cooper of Helena, a strong galena mine, is one of the old "stand-bys" of the country, capable of furnishing large quantities of ore. The Mollie McGregor, situated near the Belle of the Boulder, furnishes ore similar to the Amazon. The Mammoth, near Clancy, owned by .C. W. Cannon, also Dr. Hussey, of Pitts burgh, has furnished rich ore in the past, and the question often is asked "Why is it not worked ?" The Lord Byron, the Concannon, the Chro mo, Belmont and Ambrose form a valuable group of mines on Caliparaiso mountain, two miles fiom Wickes, which can furnish large quantities of ore. The Minah, owned by Bites & Dungee, of Jefferson City, is a well developed property and shows a true fissure vein. The Mantle Lode, a recent discovery, own ed by S. T. Hauser and Col. L. M. Black, on Cataract creek, has produced some of the richest gold ore ever found in Montana. It is a well defined vein and is a property of very great value. Professor Marsh and Dr. Ernest Grenier, as also other experts, have recently examined the property and consider it an extraordinary rich lead. This property is under bond to Cole Saunders, and may be brought into market the coming season. It is held at a fabulous price, but the great promise of the property would seem to justi fy the owners' expectations. There are not less than 100 mines within easy distance of the Alta Montana Company's works, which can furnish an abundance of ores and keep works of twice their present capacity in full operation. The large amount of money that has been expended in the construction and in the pur chase of mines, with the liberal policy that has been pursued by the company in all their operations and the care in providing for the comfort of the men, has brought them a host of friends, and now the friendship of the company is considered the most desirable and the most popular. Before closing I allude to the Cataract district, only six miles from Wickes, which is proving wonderfully rich in gold and silver, ores assaying from 500 to 800 ounces in silver per ton and gold as high as one dollar per pound are found. May I not safely predict that Wickes and its sur roundings is to be the coming Lead ville of Montana ? RIVER MINING. We again call attention of capitalists to the excellent opportunities offered in this depart- ment of mining. Many of our rivers travers- ing the most productive placer grounds are narrow, and have been confined within their rock-worn courses for ages. Their banks carry the "sands of gold" down to the marks of lowest tide, and there is no doubt that the beds of these streams are richer by far than any of the surrounding country. We are seldom annoyed by sudden, great floods, such as render the river mining of California so expensive, and sometimes even precarious; but we have generally an uninterrupted and comparatively even flood of water from the spring opening until the streams are closed again by the winter frost. The expenses of draining these narrow streams would be in- considerable, with the almost certain return of immense profits to those who should prose- cute the enterprise in a manner worthy of its importance. -— m »- ►► » —— -— m »- ►► » —— DEVELOPMENT COMPANIES. Under the intelligent guidance of an ex perienced and capable manager, who under stands mining and is in some degree acquaint ed with metallurgy, a few "development companies" might be formed that would pay their promoters enormous profits. They ought to be liberally capitalized, but above all prop erly managed. Out of the almost innume rable prospects now lying idle for want of capital to develope them, after full examina tion, they might select the most promising, and in almost every case, for an amount suffi cient to make the character of the property known, one-half interest could be secured. rospectors realize that one mine is worth a score of prospects, and are not slow to grant excellent opportunities to capital, provided they feel assured of fair and liberal dealing ARTESIAN WELLS. Four miles west of Helena are hot springs that add a large volume of water to the stream running through that neighborhood. Fifteen miles southerly are the Warm Springs, thirty miles easterly are the Antelope Springs, and at Springville is another warm spriDg, the waters from which are utilized at the Bed ford mills. On the high divide between Oro Fino and Grizzly gulches, six miles south from Helena, several attempts have been made during the past summer to sink shafts on the Black Eagle lode, but beyond a few feet from the surface every attempt has been unsuccessful on account of the abundance of water found. This region abounds in springs, and it only needs a little pluck and some cap ital to start a miniature guyserland almost anywhere among the foot-hills of these high ranges by sinking artesian wells. Town Improvements. Sixty buildings, of the value of $250,000, were erected in Helena, the Territorial Capi tal, during 1879. Other improvements—the grading of streets, adornment of houses, beautifying of grounds, etc., amount to a arge sum. ' of to [Written for the Herald.] REMINISCENCES OF "OCR LITTLE MAN OF DESTINY." By JAMES E. CALLAWAY, HO. II. The ten companies of militia mustered into the State service at Camp Grant, May fâf 1861, by Captain U. S. Grant, assigned to dmy on the staff of Governor Yates as mustering officer of State troops, formed the ten pillars upon which was builded the 21st regi ment of Illinois infantry ; and were the his tory of that regiment and that of its first Colonel omitted from the annals of our Re public, the great drama of the slave-holders' rebellion could not be written. The companies of raw militia then mus tered organized by the election of three old Mexican soldiers as field officers. At that period of our military education any one who had "seen service in Mexico," or knew "right face" from "right shoulder shift arms" was considered duly qualified for a field officer. One S. S. Goode was elected Colonel ; but less than a fortnight's service fully demon strated his unfitness for the position. Goode had been a sergeant in a volunteer company during the Mexican war, and had fillibustered with Walker in Nicaragua. He was a fine looking fellow ar.d strutted like a peacock. These were his only accomplishments * Under his administration we were little better than an organized mob, fed and clothed at the ex pense of the State. On May 29th we were officially notified that President Lincoln accepted the tender of our regiment to serve the United States "for the period of three years or during the war." We, however, remained at Camp Grant until June 9th, engaged occasionally in "awkward squad drills," but principally devoted our time and talents in robbing hen-roosts, milk ing the town cows, and sparking the pretty girls of Coles county. Discipline was un known and battalion evolutions not among the orders. To this day our escapades at Camp Grant are known as "The Mattoon War." On June 10th we managed, with much tribulation and about 500 men, to straggle into Camp Yates, about one mile west of the city of Springfield. The balance of our com mand had gone where the wind listeth, and the last state of that regiment (of State troops) was worse than the first. We were ordered by the Governor to rendezvous at Camp Yates, for the purpose of reorganizing, recruiting our ranks, and of being mustered into the United States service. A few days thereafter all the company officers were requested to meet Governor Yates at the executive office in the State House. When assembled and the Governor had greeted each of us, he stated his dissatisfaction with Col. Goode and desired to know the views of the officers and the disposition of their commands about en tering the United States service with Goode as Colonel. A large majority answered that neither they nor their men would serve under Goode. The others said they would risk Goode rather than disband, but all would trust the Governor to select a successor. His Excellency then announced that our regiment was designated as the 21st Illinois Infantry ; that all the then officers (except Goode)' would be recommissioned, but he would consider the matter of the Colonelcy. The Governor thanked us for our attendance, and as we retired took each by the hand. When it came my turn, he said : "Remain a moment; I want to see you." [I had been a student with Yates when he practiced law at Jacksonville, had often vis ited at his house, and as an editor and in the State Convention that nominated him for Governor had warmly supported his nomina tion.! a of "Well, Captain James," said the Governor when we were alone, "Whom do you want for your Colonel ?" "The regiment would be pleased with Col. Alexander, "t I answered. "Yes, Alexander is a good officer, but I will do better," said the Governor. "I am going to appoint Captain U. S. Grant your Colonel. He will make you a military repu tation. General Pope says he is the best offi cer he ever saw.J I'll tell you, my boy,"— and the Governor laid bis left hand on my shoulder,—"that little man, Grant, knows more than all of us." I was somewhat surprised, but rather proud of Yates' confidence and his opinion of our new Colonel. I managed to ask, "Where is he? " "At his father's, in Covington, Kentucky, I will telegraph him." During our conversation we had been stand ing closely together, near a small desk, Yates resting his right elbow upon it. He half turned to the right, wrote the dispatch to Grant and rung for a page. I extended my hand to take leave. He said— " Hold on ! I want you to take an order to your regiment and read it. No, I will send Major Loomis with you." He then wrote an order as Commander-in chief of the State, removed Goode as Colonel, appointed Grant in his stead, re-appointed all the former officers to the positions they had held, and placed the command in charge of Lieut. Colonel Alexander until the arrival of Colonel U. 8. Grant. In a few minutes Maj. Loomis, Assistant Adj't Gen'l of the State, appeared in full regulation dress uniform, with sash and sword. That was about the first "toggery " of the kind my peepers had ever looked upon. The Major and I rode to camp, and soon the order reorganizing the regiment was pro mulgated at headquarters, with the assistance of a basket of wine. Buch was the natal day and christening ceremonies of the new regi ment under its new commander—our Little Man of Destiny. Two days thereafter Col. Grant appeared at camp Yates, and assumed command. One of those brief, ringing and pointed orders for which Grant has become as famous as Napoleon the First, he had read to the regiment that evening at dress-parade. He reminded us that we were, " citizen soldiers ; that in becoming soldiers we would not cease to be citizens ; and that no true sol dier ever forgets that he is a gentleman , or refuses to obey the lawful orders of his superior officers ; that the country needed our services only to put down the enemies of the Constitution and Union of our fathers." While all of us contribute somewhat to those events that make history, it is none the less the duty of the faithful chronicler to see that the facts of history be not interwoven with too many warps of romance or fiction. Apropos of this : Some years ago there went the rounds of the public press a strag gling story to the effect that the 21st Illinois regiment received and treated their new Col onel (Grant) with ill grace and personal af fronts that he was so discouraged that he called upon certain distinguished gentlemen " t0 go down to camp and talk the boys into better behavior." Such a story may have pleased the imagin ative reader, as it smacked somewhat of the romantic ; and now, at this late day, it may be ungenerous to rob the public of such a charming delusion ; yet Truth says : "That story is a fiction—it is simply ab surd." A braver or more gallant class of men than the officeiS and soldiers of the Twenty-first Regiment of Illinois Volunteers never assem bled in one organization, as its acts of hero ism, written in letters of blood, and deeds of desperate daring, affirm ; but none were un gadant or reckless enough to offer a discour tesy to Col. Grant, nor do I believe any had the disposition so to do. His quiet and sol dierly bearing, business-like manners, firm ness and decision taught officers and men that he knew what to do and how to do it ! To of ficers, in a few and polite words, he gave his orders, and to the soldiers he was kind but firm. One evening, in a walk from camp to the city, he gave the writer a brief history of his military career, spoke of his successes and errors, and in a few sentences laid down maxims for the citizen-soldier that should have been written in indelible letters of gold. Under Goode (and even under Alexander before Grant assumed command, though Al exander was a good and gallant officer,) dis order reigned triumphant. In spite of the well meant efforts of company officers the soldiers broke through the camp guards, jumped the high board fence and made head quarters at the city of Springfield. One of Col. Grant's first orders was to place the camp, each 24 hours, in charge of one com pany, while the time of the nine companies not on duty was divided into hours for drill, police duty, and recreation, and then order came out of chaos ; discipline began, and from a mass of untrained militia there sprang a regiment of soldiers, well drilled and dis ciplined, that for esprit de corps had no su perior and few equals in the volunteer ser vice. * About the close of the war Goode was killed in a personal altercation with a revenue officer at Mexico, Missouri. tAlexander was then Lieutenant Colonel, succeeded Grant as Colonel, and gloriously tell while in command of his regiment at Chicamauga', Oct. 20. 1863. + Pope was then at Springfield in command of the Western Department. Tbe Deer Slayers. The following is a list of the persons who visited The Range during the past fall, and the number of Deer and Elk killed within 14 to 20 miles of Helena during the months ©f October, November and December, 1879, Reddin, George ig Simms, (deer). e w. Baahaw, " . John Bowman, W. H. Ewing, " Wm B. Hundley, ) M A. J. Kelley, j William Jones, " Oliver Allen, " J. W. Hopkins, " Thomas Charles«, " D. W. Curtis, " Percy Hauser, " Thoa. Kirkendall, " Mr. Tate. " . Mr. Manlove, " . Travis Brothers, " . Severn Jacoba, " , M. E. Walton, " . Jack Akers, " H. M. tarchen, " . John T. Murphy, " . D. A. G. Flowerree, " . T. H. Kleinachmidt, " Cliaa. D, Hard, " . Charlea Oldham, " . R. C. Wallace, •* . Charles Rumley, " . David Merritt, (Elk). Dr. Mclllhenney, " . Wm, Roe, (Grizzly bear, 1,100 lba. Î ^ -*« 14 ^^ ►► - ■-- A Nice Gold Nugget. In his recent annual report to the Director of the Mint, Mr. R. B. Harrison, Assayer in charge of the Helena Assay Office, says: " The largest single nugget of gold discover ed in Montana during the past year was de posited in thisloffice on the 29th day of April, 1879, and weighed 47.80 ounces, with a fine ness of 957. It was entirely free from quartz or dirt—a solid mass of metal having a value of $947.77. This was the largest piece found, though many nuggets varying in weight from a half ounce to 28 ounces were received at different times." 30 26 27 15 25 16 5 8 5 3 7 5 12 3 4 11 6 13 1 4 7 1 4 16 2 2 6 4 Weekly Herald. The Helena Weekly Herald— the pio neer newspaper of Montana—will be mailed to any address in the States or Territories at the regular subscription price—$5 per annum.