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THE FIRST CABIN IN ROSSLAND (ROSS THOMPSON'S).

spring, and, no doubt, others will follow.

Despite the natural sociability of miners few are seen under the influence of spirituous liquors; the laws of the country are respected; and a noticeable feature of this cosmopolitan "camp is the high opinion entertained by people from the United States regarding Canada's constitution and system of government. All classes are busy, hence little time remains for mischief and little temptation to use strong language. In the Western States, unless the atmosphere is kept blue by exple

tives the miner imagines something has gone wrong! Here the prospector who comes in from a rough week's work behaves himself-if not, John Kirkup, the Chief of Police, sends him to Kamloops to "dig dirt," as the popular local vocabulary describes consignment to prison for a few weeks. These prospectors undergo great hardships and are very prodigal in their manner of living. The poor fellows do not get fair play, for, usually, their work benefits everyone excepting themselves. Some have done remarkably well, however; the writer heard a well-known character who discovered

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"Volcanic Mountain," in the Boundary country, upon being asked if he had made money, exclaim, "Money! I don't know how much I'm worthI'm dead rich!"

One phase of mining experience in all countries is that the men who know the least talk the most. The writer has heard travellers discuss Trail Creek district, and on enquiring found that they had never been so far south, but visited the Slocan country, and vice versa; and the next thing was to

read in newspapers interviews with gentlemen concerning both "camps," based upon scraps of information gathered from passengers on a through trip over the Canadian Pacific! No matter whether their opinions were eulogistic or condemnatory, it was not just to the public nor to the mineral districts. Service, experience, exploratory knowledge have been baffled both

PANNING.

in Ontario and British Columbia regarding the existence of various ores, and the only method of knowing is to see. Certainly the Kootenay country possesses many attractions even apart from the gold and silver deposits. At Rossland one is in the centre of a cosmopolitan metropolis: South Africa, California, Australia, Montana, Idaho, Colorado, Mexico, Wales, and all the Provinces of the Dominion are represented. An evening with the social element there assembled is, in reality, a revelation. On the occasion of the visit of the Hon. A. G. Blair and Colonel Domville, M. P., an object lesson of mining hospitality impressed itself upon the observer. The people talked plainly, but were not self-assertive; they were courteous without being obsequious; and in return their visitors met them heart to heart and eye to eye. The same feature is characteristic of

business gatherings and social entertainments.

But to return to more important subjects: According to William A. Carlyle, Provincial Mineralogist of British Columbia, a gentleman whose industry is remarkable, the first-class ores in Trail district consist mainly of massive fine-grained pyrorthite and copper pyrites, sometimes with a little magnetite or mispickel, with more or less quartz and calcite. In this class of ore, as found in the lowest workings of the Le Roi, the amount of quartz is much higher, the smelting returns giving 41 to 52.8 per cent. silica, and 20.6 to 26.8 per cent. feo.; but this is proving the best ore in the mine. The average smelter returns were, on 1,200 tons, 2.6 oz. of gold, 1.8 oz. of silver, and 2.5 per cent. of copper, or $53.05 net, per ton, while some shipments went as high as 4.06 oz. in gold. The secondclass ore, and the bulk of the ore of the camp shipped will probably be of this character and value, is a diorite, with a comparatively small percentage of these sulphides, but the value is still very good; 1,800 tons of the Le Roi second-class yielded, by smelter returns, an average of 1.34 oz. of gold, 1.4 oz. of silver, and 1.6 per cent. of copper, or $27.97 net per ton.

The fact must not be overlooked that, although mining supplies are dear enough, as roads are opened and competition increases the cheapening process will follow. Machinery and appliances, measured by prices a few years ago, have been greatly reduced in cost, and if miners and foremen, and all employed in the performance of manual labour, receive the benefit, the world will be happier and toilers more contented. The following prices for labour are, as nearly as possible, correct: Miners, $3 to $3.50 per eight and ten hour shifts; trammers and topmen, $2.50 per ten hours; engineers, $3.50 to $4 per ten hours; foremen, $4 to $5 per day. The cost of driving tunnels or drifts depends much upon the nature of the ground. In exceptional places, where the ground is much

broken, the cost is from $7 to $10 per foot, but in solid, tough diorite from $10.50 to $15.50 per foot. Shaft sinking depends upon the size to some extent, but costs from $18 to $23 per foot. The prices of timber, lumber, wood and other supplies are reasonable. The cost of these services, however, will vary according to the character of the rock.

Increased gold output is not solely the result of greater discoveries, but low-grade, refractory ores can be mined economically, the "tailings" can be saved, air-drills have been perfected, and the cyanide process has enabled the miner of certain ores to gather substance from what was shadow. Rock cutting, except under exceptional conditions, has dropped from $12 to $16 per foot to as low as $4.50; "stopping," or breaking the ore after the tunnels have been excavated, can be performed for 75c, per foot, as compared with $3 under the primitive system. In short, supplies are cheaper, mechanical methods more perfect ; while the cyanide process, where it can be applied, has worked a practical revolution. In South Africa, where mining was abandoned in 1884, the ore was refractory and low grade, but now, with values ranging from $8 to $22 per ton, immense dividends are being declared, and the Transvaal contributes nearly $43,000,000 per annum to the world's golden treasury. What full returns for 1897, from South Africa, will be only time and official statistics can reveal. Certainly, the outlook is not promising for shareholders, despite the fact that immense quantities of the valuable ore undoubtedly exist. Bayonets and bullets do not belong to modern mining itinerary. If indulged in, even gold could not carry the extra financial burthen.

What of the future of Southern Kootenay? Some render judgment upon mines according to the district in which they or their friends are interested; that is human nature the world over. It happens, however, in the

entire Kootenay country discoveries have been SO numerous, extending over such large areas, that, be he scientist or layman, no one would care to jeopardize his reputation by a definite pronouncement antagonistic to the Trail district. Long ago that accomplished scientist, Doctor G. M. Dawson, C. M.G., Director of the Geological Survey of Canada, a gentleman whose indefatigable efforts in this direction entitle him to high honours, pointed out that the Cordilleran belt, or Rocky Mountain region of North America, forming the wide western rim of the continent, had, whenever adequately tested, proved to be rich in precious metals as well as baser ores, comprising throughout a metalliferous country; that alluvial gold deposits or placer mining invariably indicated the existence of quartz ores, and that the more permanent phase of mining invariably followed the construction of

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railways and roads. The Province of British Columbia, from south-east to north-west, including as it does a length of over 800 miles of the Cordilleran region, and with the further extension of the same comprised within the boundaries of the Dominion of Canada, aggregates over 1,200 miles, being identical with the whole length of the region contained within the United States from its Southern boundary with Mexico to its Northern with Canada. Doctor Dawson considered that, being a mountainous country, the development of the resources of the Pacific Provinces would necessarily be slow; but once preliminary obstacles had been overcome, an era of prosperity, difficult to foresee the extent or the end of, would be experienced. His opinion was, indeed, prophetic, as is proved by the rich auriferous quartz reefs now under development, not only meaning wealth to the miner and to the nation, but stimulating every branch of agriculture and commerce.

This is the field now open for the display of Canadian energy. It must be remembered that several of the prolific mines of to-day were abandoned and condemned not very long ago, just as were some of the best South African properties in 1884; just as were many of the promising prospects on the Seine River and Lake of the Woods in Ontario. The oldest miners confess that the greater their experience, the less confidence they feel in rendering a final opinion. In fact, five years ago the mines between Nelson, Kaslo and Slocan were almost unknown, and, if known, generally discredited, wiseacres even venturing to cast the horoscope of failure in connection with the "Silver King." Then, again, the "Slocan Star," "Galena Farm" and many other rich claims, all were to rapidly exhaust themselves, and had the opinion of a few prevailed, patient toilers would have given up hope, lost heart, and abandoned not only those, but many other valuable locations. They had faith, which was infinitely better than the random opinions of very random

experts. The same with Trail Creek country; had Durant, and Turner, and Clark, and Galusha, and Warren, and Burke, and Moynahan, and many others, surrendered their judgment to the keeping of those who "knew it all," Rossland would never have been heard of, and Ross Thompson would be sitting in his log cabin cheered by the howling of the wolves, and enlivened by the companionship of grizzlies.

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Supposing both to start upon a legitimate basis, probably as much money is lost in commercial as in mining ventures; but the man who pays for calico must not expect to open the box and find velvet, and the man who purchases a mine must spend money to find gold or silver, unless bare rock or iron capping would satisfy him. The ore does not grow on trees, and he who wants must send after it. This was done in the "Le Roy," "War Eagle," "Poorman," "Iron Mask," "Virginia," "Centre Star," "Idaho," "C. & C.," "Columbia & Kootenay," "Josie," "Monte Cristo," "St. Elmo," "Mayflower," Colonna," "City of Spokane," "Georgia," "Red Mountain," "Jumbo," "O. "Great Western," Enterprise," "Evening Star," "Iron Horse." It is being done in the "Sovereign," R. E. Lee," "Maid of Erin,' "Home Stake, Lilly May," "Crown Point," "Nickle Plate,' "" Deer Park," "Commander," "Palo Alto," o," "San Joaquin," "San Juan," "Spotted Tail," "Caledonia,' Consolidated," "Mugwump,' Nest Egg," "Silverine," "California," and many others covering large areas on Red Mountain, the South Belt, and Look-out MounProbably twenty or thirty of these will be shipping ore during 1897, and three times that number in 1898; and who shall venture to question the probability of greater discoveries, or doubt that within a reasonable period cheap transport, local smelters, and perfected machinery will vouchsafe a profit on ore at present remaining on the "dumps"? The writer emphatically repeats that two requisites are indispensably necessary: cheap trans

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portation to the smelter and railways to convey the various mixed ores for smelting purposes. Happily, the mines of the Slocan produce every variety, and it is probable that, within a few months, the Trail smelter will be turning out gold bricks instead of sending the matte long distances.

Readers must not imagine, by the foregoing details, that life in a mining camp is all "beer and skittles"; scores of chances have to be taken, scores of obstacles must be encountered and overcome. Clouds as well as sunshine exist; blows as well as caresses. Fortune is just as fickle on the mountains and in the gulches as in the more refined walks of life, be they commercial or professional; there is a bright and a dark side to the shield, and he who is not willing to think and to work might better remain at home. The writer has striven to present an unprejudiced

statement with reference to British Columbia, but more, he would impress upon the public men of Canada the fact that they, too, must assume responsibilities, not only for the construction of a southern line from what is called Crow's Nest Pass, but branches and feeders from points of supply. He would impress upon those who have capital the opportunities for utilizing it. There are some who would prefer seeing all the profit remain in British Columbia. Such policy would be penny wise and pound foolish. Outside capital built Denver and Butte and Tacoma and Seattle and scores of other mining cities, just as outside commercial capital assisted in the growth and prosperity of Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Chicago, Toronto, Montreal, and other centres of business.

Then, again, some object to mining companies disposing of shares at low

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