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COLUMBIA, ARIZONA

 

Neal Du Shane

Version 012308

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

COLUMBIA, ARIZONA. 4

INTRODUCTION. 5

WARNING NOTICE. 6

HISTORY OF COLUMBIA, ARIZONA. 7

ELIZABETH LEE CHAMPIE. 9

CHARLES CHAMPIE. 10

COLUMBIA. 14

COLUMBIA CONFUSION. 14

COLUMBIA AERIAL PHOTOGRAPH. 17

SPANISH ARRASTRE. 18

ORE PROCESSING OPERATION. 19

MAP OF COLUMBIA AND AREA MINES – 2007. 20

OCCIDENT CAMP. 21

JACK SWILLING KNOWN TO HAVE VISITED COLUMBIA  24

SWILLING CEMETERY. 25

COLUMBIA - GRAVES AND CEMETERIES. 26

DEATH CERTIFICATE OF COLONEL C.W. NORTH. 28

ORVILLE PERRY – DEATH CERTIFICATE. 31

T H E   C O L U M B I A   M I N E S. 36

EXPLORATION OF HUMBUG MINING DISTRICT. 39

ECONOMIC GEOLOGY OF THE COLUMBIA CLAIMS. 45

DIARY. 49

COLUMBIA EXPERIENCE. 59

RODNEY “PUG” DALTON JR. REMEMBERS. 61

GEORGE WALTERS SHOT JUDGE. 61

GEORGE WALTERS SHOT BIKER. 62

NEWT WHITE. 73

TROY GILLENWATER - MEMORIES OF “CURLY” McKIBBY  76

BLACK ROCK & RED ROCK CLAIM’S. 78

CURLY’S HELICOPTER ENCOUNTER. 81

NIPPER, KIPPER AND SUSIE. 82

CURLY’S INTERMENT. 82

DOGS ADOPTED. 83

CURLY McKIBBY’S DEATH CERTIFICATE. 84

‘Curly’: introduction to the desert 85

CURLY McKIBBY PHOTOGRAPH. 86

GILLENWATER DONATES $1,000.00 88

“ HARRY ” 89

CACHE La POUDRE. 90

CAUTION. 92

DIRECTIONS. 92

CEMETERY INFORMATION. 94

HISTORY OF CHAMPIE SCHOOL 1928-1978. 97

COLUMBIA STROLL TO. 101

“CURLY’S PLACE” 101

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT. 119

PHOTO ALBUM. 120

COLUMBIA AND CLAIMS FOR SALE. 136

INDEX. 137

SOURCES. 141


COLUMBIA, ARIZONA

 

Volume One

 

Version 121707

 

Copyright © 2007 by Neal Du Shane

 

 

No part of this book or Website page may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without permission of the publisher.

 

 

Published by: Neal Du Shane, Fort Collins, CO 80525

 

First Edition

 

Published in the United States of America

 

 

Cover: This is as Columbia, Arizona appeared in 2000. Photo was taken from the hill looking toward the north - northwest. Photo courtesy: Kevin Hart 

All buildings were destroyed shortly there after by the BLM.

 

INTRODUCTION

 

Neal Du Shane has been researching ghost towns for 40 years. Living in Colorado has allowed him to vacation and explore in the mountains for 30 years. Neal spent the winter reading, researching and the summer physically locating these ghost towns and mining camps. In 2002 Neal retired and became an Arizona “Snow Bird.” Getting into the backcountry is in his blood and research started immediately in the Southern Bradshaw Mountains. Neal has compiled and written on Countess Minotto, “Arizona’s Time Honored Legend - Jack Swilling”, Shoot Out at Tussock Springs, Tip Top, Arizona, Humbug, Arizona, Swansea, Harrisburg and now Columbia, Arizona. In addition more than 90 pioneer cemeteries and graves have been found and recorded. This list grows daily as we learn of these derelict locations. Neal says “If we don’t preserve these historical museums of our heritage all information will be lost forever.”

 

Neal and his wife, Joyce, founded the Arizona Pioneer & Cemetery Research Project (APCRP) in 2003 documenting, recording, restoring pioneer cemeteries and graves in Mitchell County, Iowa and in Arizona. Currently Neal and the APCRP team are researching and finding hard to locate and derelict grave sites of our pioneer heritage.

 

Historic Arizona information is presently posted on two web sites:

http://www.apcrp.org

http://n.j.dushane.home.comcast.net/

Please visit these sites and review the historic information compiled by APCRP.

 

Figure 1.

Neal at Columbia, Arizona with his 2007Can-Am Outlander Limited ATV c. 2007.

Photograph courtesy: Bruce Colbert

WARNING NOTICE

 

Figure 2. Columbia is Private Property and posted. Any perceived theory on the sign painter’s ability to spell does not diminish their ability to shoot trespassers. Photograph by: Bruce Colbert

 

Quote In-part: Robert W. Service, “The Spell of The Yukon”

 

I wanted the gold, and I sought it;

I scrabbled and mucked like a slave.

Was it famine or scurvy – I fought it;

I hurled my youth into a grave.

I wanted the gold, and I got it –

Came out with a fortune last fall, -

Yet somehow life’s not what I thought it,

And somehow the gold isn’t all.

 

There’s gold, and it’s haunting and haunting;

It’s luring me on as of old;

Yet it isn’t the gold that I’m wanting

So much as just finding the gold.

 

HISTORY OF COLUMBIA, ARIZONA

 

Arizona has been shaped by many cultures, inventions and events. Native Americans, Spaniards, Mexicans and Europeans are just a few of the cultures that have made their marks and their homes in the Grand Canyon State.

 

Pioneers, prospectors and miners came to this area in the 1850’s exploring the region following in the foot steps of Spanish miners. Miners aban­doned the region by 1867 giving the name “Humbug to the creek flowing out of the mountains. Humbug is an archaic term meaning "hoax", or "jest."

 

From 1882 thru 1934 there was sporadic mining in Humbug, Rockwall Gulch, Carpenter Gulch, Swilling Gulch, and Gold Hill Mountain.  There were well over a hundred mines and claims, a few of which Dave Burns, historian and caretaker of Humbug, knows a little bit about.

 

The Beacon Light Mine has an extremely interesting history.  The owner had a good mine although extremely inaccessible in Swilling Gulch.  He owned the mine, store, saloon, whore house, and boarding house, all at the mine property.  Not much money left the area except in his pocket.  After he was done mining, he moved to Phoenix and started a Bank.

Other mines in the district were the Sidewinder that produced about 2,000 oz gold for Charlie Champie, Mountain Chief Mine produced about 5,000 oz gold for Charlie Champie, Little Annie Mine about 1,000 oz gold for Frank Hyde, Uncle Sam unknown amount in silver.

Lizzie Lee Mine (Figure 3), Acquisition Mine (Figure 26), Betty Lou Mine, Top Notch Mine, Gold Spring Mine, Little Joseph Mine, Crescent Mine were all producers, but Dave doesn’t have figures on their production. There were many more that were only prospects.

 

Swilling Gulch was notable as there were at least 50 different mines and prospects there.

 

The first mining was in the late 1870's when placer miners worked their way up Humbug Creek and found some small lode deposits.  This started a small gold rush.  

 

Charlie Champie showed up around 1882 and worked up at Humbug.  People came and went and mining continued until the mid 1930's.

The Little Joe mine was from the early 1930's.  Newt White (Figure 26) worked there during the first phase of mining when Charlie Champie's grandson, Joe Stockdale, was in charge.  Joe lost the contract, however, and someone else took over.  They moved to a different spot on the vein, and did quite well.

Records from the 1870's era are almost non-existent, just stories I heard from Newt.  I don't know much about the Lizzie Lee mine near Lizzie Lee Spring, except that it had a reputation as a good producer.

 

Figure 3

Lizzie Lee Mine in Swilling Gulch. Photograph courtesy: Bruce Colbert c. 2007

 

Charlie Champie came to the area and developed placer mining at Humbug, Arizona then moving down stream on Humbug Creek a mile to a mile and a half, near the area of Columbia in 1882. Built a stone house and the Champie Mill on a peninsula about ¾ mile north of Columbia where the Humbug Creek and trail to Acquisition Mine turns Northeast. It is believed there is a cemetery at this location where his baby is buried with up to 4 or 5 other individuals buried there. 

 

By: Dave Burns

ELIZABETH LEE CHAMPIE


Born on October 31, 1865 in Illinois, Lizzie Lee Champie was the daughter of Thomas and Agnes Bridget Feeley Lee. Lizzie had married Charles Edward Champie, II, on November 16, 1882 in Ft. McKavitt, Texas. Lizzie came with her husband and two children to Arizona in 1886, as a 20 year old bride. They settled on a small piece of land between Ash Creek and French Creek. 

 

Figure 4.


Photograph Courtesy: Ann Tewksbury

 

Lizzie was a homemaker and rancher, Lizzie & Charles had 12 children: Bessie Bridget (Mrs. Frank) Morgan (October 7, 1883 in Ft. McKavitt); Addie U (Mrs. Marshall) Young (October 16, 1884 in Ft. McKavitt); Charles Thomas ( November 29, 1886 in Columbia, AZ.); Mary J. (Mrs. "Doc") Wills (February 10, 1889 in Columbia); Emma Lorien (Mrs. Thomas) Stockdale (September 12, 1892); Joseph (April 28, 1894); Annie Lee (Mrs. Clyde) Douglas (April 24, 1896); George Edward (January 15, 1898); Claire Elaine (Mrs. Fred) Cordes (February 7, 1900); Henry Lawton (December 2, 1902); Samuel Richard (died as an infant); Gertrude March (Mrs. Tommy) Walker (July 1909 in Crown King).

Up to and through the 1950’s Lizzie resided at the Champie family homestead, at that time called "Champie Guest Ranch" near Castle Hot Springs. Lizzie died in Glendale, Arizona as the Champie family matriarch, in December 1958 and she is buried in the Champie Cemetery off Champie Ranch Road northwest of Castle Hot Springs, behind the School House at Champie Ranch.

 

Current research suggests that Samuel Richard Champie the eleventh of twelve Charlie and Elizabeth Champie’s children, was born in 1908 and would have died the same year as an infant. Further documentation has been gained, we believe Joseph is the infant that was stung with a scorpion in his diaper and is buried at the Champie Mill one mile north of Columbia. Joseph Champie grave has been found but the death date on the headstone is wrong. There is no documentation of a Samuel Richard Champie being buried at the Champie Ranch Cemetery nor has the grave been found.

 

Photo Courtesy: Clairann Cordes Allan

CHARLES CHAMPIE

Courtesy: Cathy Cordes

 

In 1885, school teacher Charles Champie and his wife Elizabeth with their two daughters, Bessie and Adeline, moved from San Angelo, Texas, to Ysleta, Texas, and the next year they moved on to Arizona. Elizabeth's mother, Bridgett Lee, and her uncle, John Lee, were already in Arizona and had written back to Texas, urging Charles and Elizabeth to follow them and make their fortune in the booming mining industry. They had gone to Ysleta to try farming, but, after two difficult years there, decided to try their luck in the new Territory. They sold most of their belongings and boarded a train that took them as far as Ashfork, Arizona. Since the railroad was not yet completed to Prescott, they had to make the rest of the trip by stagecoach. After a stay in Prescott they took another stage to Tip Top, in the southern foothills of the Bradshaw Mountains, where Bridgett and John were waiting for them. It was a long trip and the ruggedness of the country discouraged them, but John's tales of rich deposits of gold, just waiting to be found, convinced them that they had made the right move. They made their home in a small rock cabin and in a few months their third child, Charles, was born. Charles and Elizabeth had joined the flood of pioneers that were to stake a claim and raise their families in the rough wilderness of the Arizona Territory.

 

Charles' father, Charles Shampie, was born of French-Canadian parents in 1833. He ran away from home when his parents wouldn't let him marry the girl that he loved and enlisted in the Army in New York under the name of Charles Champie, severing all ties with his family. In 1852 the Army sent him to a new fort being built in Texas, Ft. McKavett, where he met and married Mary Elizabeth (Betty) Shellenberger in 1859. After leaving the Army he farmed for a while and later opened a store, hauling his own supplies in from San Antonio. After he suffered a stroke and could no longer drive the wagon to San Antonio, Betty took over, driving at night to avoid the Indians and outlaws. Their oldest child, Charles, was born in 1860, and they had fourteen more. The elder Charles and Betty both died in Texas and are buried at Ft. McKavett.

 

Elizabeth was born in Illinois in 1865 to Irish immigrants Tom and Bridgett Lee. They also settled at Fort McKavett where Tom was a stone mason and Bridgett ran a hotel and boarding house. They had ten children. Their daughter, Elizabeth, married the young school teacher, Charles Champie, when she was only seventeen. Two years later the young couple moved to Ysleta, south of El Paso on the Rio Grande to try farming. After months of back-breaking work clearing the land on the Mexican border, they decided to try for a better life in Arizona.

 

Tip Top

 

Charles and Elizabeth lived and worked in numerous mining camps in the southern Bradshaw’s for the next several years including Columbia, Hoffman, Copperopolis and Wagoner. They had nine more children, none with the help of a doctor except for the last, Gertrude, who was born when Elizabeth was forty-five. After Bessie and Adeline, who were born in Texas, their other children in order of birth were; Charles, Mary, Emma, Joseph, Anne, George, Claire, Lawton, Samuel and Gertrude. Joseph and Samuel both died as babies. Elizabeth became a mid-wife and nurse, traveling miles on horseback ill daytime or night, to deliver babies or nurse a sick neighbor. Besides being one of the few women in the country, her kind and generous nature made her a natural nurse.

 

As with all miners, the Champie’s had good and bad times. Once, they were offered $10,000 for a strike. They considered taking the money and buying Castle Hot Springs, which was available for $7,000, but, like true miners, decided to gamble on the strike paying off and turned the offer down. When their own prospects weren't supporting them, Charles took a job in the mill at Tip Top, a rough and lawless mining camp. There were two factions in the town, those who liked or profited from a wide-open "hell hole," and those who wanted to make it a respectable place to live and work. The always honest and upright Charles was elected Justice of the Peace by the "decent" faction and set out to try to clean up the unruly camp. However, he and Elizabeth soon tired of "city" life and returned to the Humbug Creek area and went back to working their own mines. Their big success was the Mountain Chief mine at Columbia which they worked for years. Charles carried the ore on horseback at night to sell in Phoenix in order to avoid the many thieves who made a living in the area. The local stage coach was robbed several times a month.

 

The Ranch on French Creek

 

Craving a permanent home of their own where they could raise their children, Charles and Elizabeth homesteaded a ranch at the confluence of French and Ash Creeks a few miles from Castle Hot Springs. They had tried to live in Phoenix for a while when their children grew to school age, but realized that they preferred living their own life in the country and returned to the sun-baked Bradshaw foothills. Charles used mules to pack in lumber and pipe from abandoned mining camps in the surrounding hills to build a house and irrigation system. Water was piped in from the two creeks and they planted an orchard and garden. Before long they had chickens, ducks, geese, turkeys and a milk cow. Charles started a herd of Angora goats that grew to several thousand and, eventually, he had to hire an extra man to watch them all. Every Sunday the bachelor prospectors in the area were invited to the Champie ranch for Sunday supper. Giving these men, most of whom probably lived alone, a home-cooked meal served at a dining room table surrounded by happy children was probably the high point of their week.

 

Being a former school teacher, Charles knew the value of education and, as their children grew, he hired a school teacher to live with them and teach the children.

 

Eventually, Charles built a school house near the ranch and he and Elizabeth periodically scouted the country for school-aged children so that there would always be enough of them to maintain a school district and teacher. Often, children who lived some distance away were invited to live with the Champie’s while they were attending school. The Champie School became the primary center of learning and social activity for the residents of the southern Bradshaw’s for the next several decades.

 

Charles had also purchased three Durham calves and established a small cattle herd with the CE brand, periodically selling fresh beef to local mining camps and towns. However, he never had much of a herd and concentrated mainly on his goats. As he grew older he turned over the responsibility of managing the stock to his surviving sons, all of whom grew up to be cattlemen. When all of their children were more-or-less grown, Charles and Elizabeth tried to escape dusty Arizona and bought a chicken ranch near Escondido, California. It was beautiful, green country and Charles thought that his goats would thrive there. He had them shipped out by train and turned them loose, but the goats refused to eat the grass and nearly -starved. Charles finally gave up and shipped the goats back to Arizona. He sold the chicken ranch, but made a nice profit because of a granite quarry that was found on the property.

 

When they returned to Arizona they found that their old ranch house had been badly damaged by intruders, so Charles hired some Mexican artisans and built a new adobe home about a half mile up the hill from the old one. Charles and Elizabeth moved into their new home and continued to work their mining properties until Charles died in 1932. Elizabeth then moved in with her daughter Claire and her husband Fred Cordes at their ranch in Bumble Bee and stayed with them until her death in 1958. Even at eighty years of age, Elizabeth was still riding over twenty miles on horseback to check on her mine in the mountains. After moving to the new house, they had turned the old ranch house over to their daughter Annie and her husband Clyde Douglas. They fixed up the old place, added a swimming pool, and opened what was probably the first family-owned guest ranch in Arizona. Many former guests of the Castle Hot Spring’s Resort started frequenting the Champie Guest Ranch and it became very successful. The Douglas' sold the guest ranch in the 1940s and moved to a ranch near Whittman.

 

The Two Shoe Ranch

 

In the early 1930s, after Charles had died and Elizabeth had moved away, Lawton and his sister Mary added some rooms and made some changes to the newer adobe ranch house with the idea of turning it into a guest ranch. However, this partnership did not work out and Mary and her husband, "Doc" Wills, moved to Phoenix, and Lawton moved into the house and started his own cattle operation. Originally, he was given the house with the idea that he would take care of his mother, but she was more comfortable with her daughter Claire's family and finally just stayed with them. Lawton called his ranch the Two Shoe and built it into one of the largest and most successful cattle ranches in central Arizona, with seventy-five sections in the desert and forty-five sections of Forest Service permit in the Bradshaw Mountains. At any given time he had up to seven or eight hundred head of cattle. He had some of his father’s goats at first but got rid of most of them quickly. He loved cattle but didn't care much for goats. He just kept a few around for fun, as ropin' goats. Occasionally, Lawton would take some of the overflow guests from the Champie Guest Ranch. One of his more famous guests was the gangster John Dillinger, who was on the run from the law at the time. An article about this unexpected guest appeared in the local paper, but Lawton didn't have any idea who the man was while he was staying with him. In spite of these distractions, Lawton's main concern was always cattle. But if one of Lawton's great loves was the cattle business, the other was rodeos.

COLUMBIA

 

Columbia's Post Office was established on September 25, 1894 and discontinued July 31, 1915, concluding 21 years of service to this mining community and surrounding area.

 

At its peak, Columbia was a mining camp of approximately 100 people.

 

Columbia had a business community comprising of:

 


Blacksmith

Carpenter Shop

General Store

Justice of the Peace 

Meat Market

Post Office

Saloon (s)

Shoemaker


 

Total production over the life span of Columbia was only about $50,000. Today that isn’t an excessive amount of money but in that era it would have been very respectable. Expenses could have easily exceeded production dollars however, leaving investors with worthless holes in the ground.

 

Currently the mining that is being done, is by hobby miners (not their profession) that are working in the area with a caretaker at the ore processing site (Figure 9). Plus the community of Humbug approximately 2 miles northwest up Humbug Creek has a resident caretaker.

 

Prospectors that heard rumors of gold and silver float in the southern Bradshaw’s began working the gulches, but found little treasure.   

 

After the rich Tiger Mine discovery in 1870 near the headwaters of Humbug Creek and Bradshaw City, miners renewed their search down Humbug Creek and found gold placers. Between 1872 and 1874 about fifty miners worked the gulches below Gold Hill, giv­ing the area such place names as (Jack) Swilling Gulch, (Dan) Rockwall Gulch, and (William) Carpenter Gulch.

 

In 1884 a store and gold mill were built at Hum­bug Camp a mile above the placers and lodes.

 

A decade later another company built a mill a mile below the placers. A half dozen buildings and Col­umbia Post Office clustered around the mill. Although the mines produced only $50,000 worth of gold, Columbia lingered on until 1915 when the British­ financed Acquisition Mining Company ceased operations (Figure 11).

 

Stone houses from the placer mining era and adobe buildings dating from the 1880's are on the creek, with clusters at Humbug and Columbia (Figure 13).

 

COLUMBIA CONFUSION

 

Over the years, there as been confusion as to the exact location of Columbia and justifiably so. Originally there was a community by the name of Columbia that was up on the flats on the present day road between Humbug and Columbia. It sat on the south side of the road after the “T” intersection leading to Humbug. Travel approximately one-half mile and there are two graves of men held up, shot and killed for gold they did not possess. Tragic and meaningless end to these pioneers’ lives. The Arizona Pioneer & Cemetery Research Project (APCRP) has placed two markers at the graves of these two gentlemen. We refer to this location as “Old Columbia” (Figure 5 & 6).

 

Figure 5

 

 

Figure 6

Old Columbia graves Figure 5 & 6 

Markers placed by the Arizona Pioneer & Cemetery Research Project (APCRP) 2006.

Photograph’s by: Neal Du Shane

 

Getting back to the subject at hand, that of present day Columbia. After you have turned right at the “T” intersection on Columbia Trail, continue northeast toward Gold Hill Mountain until you approach a trail to your left indicating a BLM route, turn left and follow this route.

 

As you approach the Gold Hill area you will see the mining operation on the right with holding ponds of a fairly current operation (Figure 9). In 2007, this is the current residence of caretakers, Betty and Larry Gill. The property is owned by Mr. and Mrs. Losee currently residing in Utah. This is not to be confused with Columbia although it is very close and please do not trespass on this property as it is posted and gated. (Figure 2)

 

Follow the BLM trail to the left and you will come to the Humbug Creek river bottom. Turn to your right and bounce through the creek to the east bank. Look across the creek bed and you will start to see the remains of Columbia (Figure 14). This is on private land so do not trespass (Figure 2). Not much is left of Columbia due to the destruction of the buildings and equipment by the government some years ago. There are still two or three palm trees that identify the location of the community (Figure 23).

COLUMBIA AERIAL PHOTOGRAPH

Figure 7

               Photograph courtesy: Neal Du Shane, Pilot: Gary Grant   

 

Aerial View of Columbia, Arizona - to the center of the photograph is the ore processing operation, two settling ponds and home of George and Marguerite Walters.

 

SPANISH ARRASTRE

 

Figure 8

Spanish Arrastre Photograph courtesy: Neal Du Shane

 

\Ar*ras"tre\, n. [Sp.] A crude apparatus for pulverizing ores, especially those containing free gold. This circular device with a circular trough was used to crush gold bearing rock. In this picture the center pivot metal axle would have had a horizontal bar attached to it. This bar would have either been made of wood or metal. At one end of the bar was a “Drag Rock” of considerable weight which would have been attached by rope, chain or cable. At the other end of the bar was a “beast of burden” that walked the perimeter of the Arrastre’s circle and the ore bearing rock would be crushed. Once pulverized the fine rock concentrate would be processed to extract the gold.

 

Locating an Arrastre is evidence of early miners working small mining operations, long before mechanical miners arrived. Arizona became a Territory on March 12, 1862 and after that date, this area was no longer legally Mexico and became illegal for Mexican Miners to own mining property or mines. Many mines in that era where acquired by European prospectors simply coming in to existing operations and taking the operations over from the Mexican miners. Arrastre’s predate stamp mills and other more modern methods of processing rock containing gold, silver, etc.

 

ORE PROCESSING OPERATION

Figure 9

This is not Columbia: this is the ore processing operation for mines in the area.

Columbia is to the left at Humbug Creek’s edge.

Photograph courtesy: Neal Du Shane


MAP OF COLUMBIA AND AREA MINES – 2007

 

Figure 10

OCCIDENT CAMP

Figure 11

Photograph source: Unknown

 

Figure 12

 

By: Dave Burns

 

Occident Camp and the mill in the picture (Figure 11) was associated with the Acquisition Mine in Carpenter Gulch.  Over the ridge to the east of Humbug is Rockwall Gulch.  The next canyon east is Carpenter Gulch.  It is 2 miles from Columbia to Occident Camp, now referred to as Acquisition Mine (Figure 11 & 26).

 

The old mill is gone, of course, and in its place a cyanide plant was built sometime in the 1970's.  It was never used.  There is evidence of an extensive drilling program, and apparently no ore was ever found.  Getting there is difficult. (Figure 26)

 

When Dave Burns went, he walked from Humbug across Rockwall Gulch to Carpenter Gulch, then down Carpenter Gulch to Swilling Gulch, down Swilling to Humbug Creek, then up to Humbug.  It was a long day, but lots to see, including the Beacon Light Mine (with several ruins) and Little Joe Mine.

 

The average grade in the two miles from Columbia to the old Occident Camp is 8% with a few 25% and one 35% grade. From the north end of Columbia it is currently a foot trail to/from Occident Camp/Acquisition.

 

Figure 13

Dave Burns (Pointing)

Humbug’s yearly March Open House, giving tour at Humbug, Arizona

Photograph courtesy: Reba Wells Grandrud

 

It is an extremely difficult trail to go through Columbia, up Gold Hill, east to Tip Top, then northwest to Carpenter Gulch.  To get there by 4X4 high clearance vehicle, or ATV, dirt bike, you would have to come from the east side of the Bradshaw’s starting at Gillett, through Tip Top. (Figure 12)

 

Dave is very interested in what you read about the stamp mill north of Humbug.  There is evidence of a stamp mill in Rockwall Gulch, northeast of Humbug, but I have never heard anything about it.  Please relay that information and let’s see if they line up.

Southeast of Humbug, there were two mills where Swilling Gulch comes into Humbug Creek.  The first was Charley Champie's.  His old boiler is still there.  The second was Allen Mill and a large stone foundation is still there. Also, there are a couple of stone houses still there.

 

Figure 14

The Post Office – Columbia, AZ.

Photograph by: Neal Du Shane

 

At Cow Creek Road and Columbia Trail there was a ranch, called the XP Ranch, and a toll house. This area may also be known as “Indian Springs”.

 

The road to Crown King (Crown King Trail) was, many years ago, a toll road.  There was a small hotel there, and in the 1930's, a resort.  If you look on the west side of the road, there is an old swimming pool with three structures still standing. There is evidence of foundations sprinkled about this general area that indicate this was a fairly large community and there is dam slightly past the structures going northwest on Cow Creek Road.

JACK SWILLING KNOWN TO HAVE VISITED COLUMBIA

 

In mid-April of 1878, Jack Swilling, George Munroe and Andrew Kirby rested at Columbia. Jack and company had left Gillett on a sojourn promoted by Trinidad Swilling and assisted by Munroe and Kirby, to sober Jack from his ever increasing binges of alcohol and morphine to the point of insanity. It was Trinidad’s intent that this three day trip would turn Jack’s life around. Drug abuse treatment programs as we know them today were non-existent in 1878.

 

The Arizona Miner of April 8, 1871, reported that Snively and four other men, one of them Andrew Starar, were attacked by about 180 Indians at White Picacho Mountain.

 

The account said Snively fell wounded at the first fire “and was left to the mercy of the savages by his comrades, who became panic-stricken, and ran away."

 

Snively was a long time friend of Jack and Trinidad Swilling. Jack’s benevolence was known to search out, exhume and re-inter the remains of others, to a more populated and respectable location to be near friends, family land civilization.

 

On this trip in mid-April of 1878 Jack Swilling, George Munroe and Andrew Kirby were accused and eventually arrested for a stagecoach robbery two miles west of Wickenburg. For which they were innocent of all charges but never-the-less they endured a trial in Prescott on the charges.

 

On this trip to exhume Col. Snively, the first afternoon was spent traveling from Black Canyon through Gillett, west to Tip Top then to Humbug Creek. It is believed they rested for approximately four hours at Columbia. They then completed the first day’s trip by reaching Castle Hot Spring that evening and spending the night.

 

One can only surmise they rested their weary sour muscles in the soothing, sobering waters of the resort. The next day they reached the White Picacho Mountain and exhumed Col. Snively’s remains and put them in a gunnysack for transportation back to Black Canyon City.

 

Upon returning to Black Canyon City, Jack was seen with the gunnysack with Col. Snively’s remains walking about Black Canyon City and Gillett, for what reason history does not provide. Eventually Jack placed the remains of Col. Snively next to his deceased eight-year-old daughter Matilda Swilling at their residence, which still stands in 2007. This structure was and still is referred to as the Swilling Stone House. The burial of five people in the Swilling Stone House back yard is referred to as the Swilling Cemetery (Figure 15).

 

As it turned out Jack Swilling was in ill health and this trip was the last one he made as a free man. He was arrested and jailed shortly after returning to Black Canyon City and after the trial in Prescott, Swilling, Munroe and Kirby were acquitted. But a new trial was required as the courts discovered they had tried the accused in Yavapai County and the actual robbery took place in Maricopa County. They carted the three accused Stagecoach Robbers to Yuma County Jail (not the Territorial Prison) and Jack died there at 6:30 PM, August 12, 1878 in the Yuma County Jail.  George Munroe and Andrew Kirby were never tried again and were released from Yuma County Jail in October 1878 after law enforcement caught the three individuals that actually committed the stagecoach robbery.

 

Figure 15

SWILLING CEMETERY

 

 

Grave locations - Swilling Cemetery at Swilling Stone House in Black Canyon City

Drawing created and documentation of graves by: Neal Du Shane APCRP

 

COLUMBIA - GRAVES AND CEMETERIES

By: Neal Du Shane, APCRP

 

Figure 16

2007 – Columbia Cemetery – Grave of a baby girl.

Photograph by: Neal Du Shane

 

Thanks to the property owners Mr. and Mrs. Losee and very gracious caretakers Betty and Larry Gill we were able to locate the Columbia Cemetery with approximately 12 to 15 burials.

 

One of which is believed to be a daughter of Pioneer Prospector. At first research it was believed this was the Champie baby. History records the baby was crying at the time, and no one could figure out why. They removed his diaper and discovered a scorpion had gained access inside the diaper and it had stung the baby several times. This is not the Champie baby grave. I outlined with rocks the burial plot. (Figure 16)

                                             

The ashes of George and Marguerite Walters are sprinkled on Gold Hill at the Cougar Mine. We have also documented the grave of a O.E. Penney 1874- 1955. (Figure 20)

Curly McKibby’s ashes were interred in his favorite “Lucky” gold pan at the foot of his favorite Saguaro on his claims.

 

Please don’t trespass on private mine property or destroy these museums of our heritage as this is a felony and most property owners prosecute. Disregard my previous statement regarding Larry & Betty being gracious, if you decide to trespass (Figure 2).

 

At the present writing, there are seven burial locations documented and identified, a complete roster of the interred and additional information on the Cemeteries and Graves in and about Columbia and Old Columbia refer to (Figure 38).

 

Figure 17

Headstone of C.W. North who died February 14, 1934, buried at his grave near Columbia, Arizona. “Location of His Last Claim”. Photograph and enhancement by: Neal Du Shane

 

This marker/headstone’s hand chiseled lettering is so faint it required special techniques to ascertain the actual lettering by Larry Gill and Neal Du Shane. To save others the task of reading his headstone we took the liberty to enhance the lettering to make it legible.

Whenever possible, attempts to high light the actual chisel marks were followed keeping it as authentic as possible recreating the original.

 

Figure 18

DEATH CERTIFICATE OF COLONEL C.W. NORTH

 

 

Death Certificate implies Col. C.W. North was buried at Castle Hot Springs which is not accurate. His grave is at the ghost town of Columbia, Arizona, there is an internment of a male adult in the grave with the headstone (Figure 17) placed at the grave site.

 

Figure 19

Grave. Photograph by: Neal Du Shane

 

Follow the BLM access road signs across the creek to the east. As you start to climb up out of the creek, you will pass over a cattle guard. On the right approximately 200 feet you will see the burial plot of “C.W. North 2/14/34 Location of His Final Claim”. From his death certificate he was listed as a Colonel C.W. North and his brother was John North of Phoenix.

 

Another individual burial site is that of an adult male (Figure 19). It is located on the left (North) of the main driveway about halfway between where the road “Y”’s and the gate to the present mine buildings. There is no headstone or marker, but the grave is clearly marked with rocks outlining it. In 2007 I made a rock cross in the center of the grave enclosure to help identify its location. At this time there is no record of this person or how/when he died. We can only speculate he may have been a miner.

Figure 20

 

 

Photo enhancement by: Neal Du Shane

Photograph courtesy Mr. & Mrs. Losee

 

Photograph at right is the grave of O.E. (Orville) Perry, born Sept. 9, 1874, died Feb. 17, 1955. Location of this grave is on Gold Hill in the area of Columbia, Arizona.

 

Margarite Walters maiden name was Perry, speculation is this grave may be the grave of her father. There has been no documentation to this effect found.

 

ORVILLE PERRY – DEATH CERTIFICATE

Figure 21

 

At the north “T” intersection on Columbia Trail, topographical maps show graves on the northeast corner. We dowsed this area and did find possibly three or four gravesites. Nothing is known regarding who the graves are or the circumstance’s that caused their burial here.

 

Larry and Betty are presently keeping the main house in good repair at the ore-processing site living there when ever possible. Larry has a mine claim up Humbug Creek about a half-mile that he works as time permits.

 

What has been written about Columbia in the past, places the town incorrectly. The town of Columbia is actually closer to the creek on a flat spot on the west side of Humbug Creek below the current ore processing buildings and holding ponds. There are still two palm trees, rock embankment wall, some remnants of the homes and a cement foundation of the ball mill.

 

All the buildings and equipment were removed from Columbia by BLM in 2005. Little remains of the actual town except for trees and a few foundations.

 

Figure 22

Downtown Columbia, Arizona c. 2006. L-R Cathy Johnson, Neal Du Shane,

Teri Thorpe & Larry Gill. Photograph courtesy: Reba Wells Grandrud.

 

George Walters started most, if not all of the mines as the former owner and operated here for years before selling to the Losee’s. Mr. and Mrs. Losee started the most current exploration at Columbia in the 1960’s and 1970’s.  They brought in Joe Stocks as technical advisor and did a substantial drilling program on Gold Hill and the ridge north of George Walter's house (Figure 9).

 

The exploration program was not productive. The history of this area of Arizona is for gold to occur in small pockets and difficult to find by drilling.  At this time, a promoter named B.J. Washburn appeared and convinced Mr. and Mrs. Losee to invest in a cyanide processing plant. 

 

This led to disagreements with Joe Stocks, as cyanide is not generally workable with gold bound in quartz, and since no deposits had been found, there was no indication that such a plant would ever be useful.  But Washburn convinced Mr. and Mrs. Losee to invest.  Gold bearing ore was never discovered on these expeditions or processed.

 

When Dave Burns came into the area in 1981, the Columbia operation had just closed. There has been no activity in Columbia since 1980.

 

Dave is unaware of any production from these operations, although I have heard that George Walters may have had some successes with the Cougar Mine and Top Notch Mine, both mines are up on Gold Hill (Figure 10).

 

The five-stamp mill that has been referred to at Columbia may have been at the Allen Mill right at the junction of Humbug Creek and Swilling Gulch. The Allen Mill came after the Champie Mill that is just down Humbug Creek.

 

There are considerable stone foundations and a large well at Allen Mill. Champie Mill was smaller, with a few stone walls and the old boiler.

 

George Walter's house is the main building on the ore processing and holding ponds area that Larry and Betty Gill currently reside in 2007 (Figure 9).

 

Figure 23

                                                                                          Columbia 2000 – Looking down from Gold Hill

Photo courtesy: Kevin Hart.

 

It is Dave’s understanding that the small stone building across and just up Humbug Creek from George Walter's house was the post office, and that the saloon (probably a frame structure) stood next to it.  The stone house across and down the creek was a residence (Figure 14).

 

It has not been documented that a stagecoach ever ran through or to Columbia, as Columbia was a dead end road for wagons coming from the west off Cow Creek Road, past Humbug and Old Columbia.

 

The current Columbia Trail was a pack trail until 1970, when the trail was improved into a road as part of the real estate development subdividing the area into 40 acre lots.

 

The pack trail down Swilling Gulch from Tip Top to Columbia was never wide enough for wagons. Today Swilling Gulch is still a trail.

In 2005, BLM demolished the structures and hauled off the equipment at Columbia, that were built in the 1960 - 1970's.

 

It is my understanding that the current road over the top of Gold Hill did not exist in Swilling's day (1870’s). The pack trail down Swilling Gulch from Tip Top was the main thoroughfare in the Columbia area (Figure 10).

 

The saloons along the route, at Tip Top and Columbia, may have influenced Swilling's decision to go this route and may have also necessitated the four-hour rest at Columbia.  In those days it was not unusual for travelers to drink in the saddle which equates to Riding Under the Influence (RUI). If this were the case, I’m sure Trinidad did not factor this into her theory to send Jack on this trip to sober him.

 

The majority of the lode producing mines were up on Gold Hill across Humbug Creek to the east of Columbia.  Mines and Claims by the name of:

 


Beacon Light

B & L

Blaze 1 & 2

Coolidge 1, 2

Columbia 1, 2, 3, 4

Cougar 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 AKA Gold Path

Gold Cliff

Gold King

Gold Path AKA Cougar

Gold Spring

Golden Glint 

Hard Times 1 & 2, AKA Yankee Maid 

Harrison M.

Hilda

Lizzie Lee

Lucky 

Lunan 1, 2, 3, 4 

Nevada

North Field

Owl

Red Star

Star Placer

T. N. T.

Top Notch 1 & 2

Uncle Jim 1 & 2

Yankee Maid 1 & 2, AKA Hard Tim




All but the Gold Spring Mine, were on Gold Hill. Although there is several placer mines along the Humbug Creek leading to Columbia (Figure 10).

 

According to Arizona Department of Mines and Mineral Resources database of mines there is a BEACON LIGHT MS 1396, UNPAT. file 914A, Columbia topo map,  N34 02 46  W112 17 37   Township 8N, Range 1E, Section 7, quarter SE. (Ref. Kevin Hart, Arizona Department of Mines and Mineral Recourses)

 

In reviewing Topographical maps there used to be a trail from Columbia to Castle Hot Spring some 6.16 miles away SW. Shortly after leaving Columbia, a short distance south on Humbug Creek the trail took off toward Castle Hot Spring (Figure 10).

 

George Walters owned the claims at Columbia prior to Mr. and Mrs. Losee. George Suber was the caretaker prior to Larry and Betty Gill, and Mr. and Mrs. Losee purchasing the claims. It is believed George Suber lives in or about Yarnell, Arizona, the last we have been able to determine. At this printing we have not been able to reach Mr. George Suber.


T H E   C O L U M B I A   M I N E S

29 April 1985

 

This property consists of 23 mining claims located in Township 8 North, between Range 1 West and Range 1 East, bisected by the Gila Bend and Salt River Median, in the Bradshaw Mountains north of Morristown, Arizona

 

Access to the property is from the intersection of Castle Hot Springs Road and Arizona Highway 93 (Phoenix to Wickenburg). Where Castle Hot Springs Road crosses State Highway 74 it becomes an unimproved graded dirt road. The road is easily traversed by any vehicle for a distance of 27.1 miles when it becomes much less easily traveled, and should be traveled in a four wheel drive (high clearance) vehicle for the remaining four miles. At least two hours and 15 minutes should be allotted to make the journey to the claims.

 

Columbia, Arizona was an active mining town at the turn of the century (1900). The claims were acquired by George Walters in the late nineteen twenties and he resided on the property and mined it for various minerals until the late nineteen seventies.  Many of the claims have been extensively worked, and there is evidence of the presence of long time residents in the area, including several gravesites.

 

A review of affidavits filed with the Phoenix Office of the Bureau of Land Management reveals that all assessment work required to maintain title to the claims has been done effective to September 1, 1985. The file also reveals that ten individuals have examined the file maintained on these claims since January 1983. These individuals live in various parts of the United States

 

Claim markers were difficult to locate. For that reason, it could not be determined if one mine was on the Owl claim or on the Harrison M. claim. It is assumed that one mine, which has collapsed to within six feet of the adit was on the Owl claim. In one of the mines on the Harrison M. claim, a visible vain of gold bearing quartzite about a foot deep was plainly visible which thickened as it ran back into the mine where mining was suspected. No attempt was made to estimate the richness of this ore due to lack of tools and assay equipment.

 

There is several building on the property. The Walters residence is well built, 1,158 sq. foot structure dating from the fifties. It has foot thick concrete exterior walls, a slab floor, and a corrugated sheet metal roof. There is an attractive stone fireplace and chimney, tow bedrooms, bath, kitchen, an attached garage and workshop. The home has ample cabinets and closets. It has a wash house with an outside shower built adjacent to the house.

 

The house is furnished with beds, table, chairs, sofa, overstuffed chairs, electric kitchen range and a working refrigerator. There is evidence of occupancy as late as March 1984, probable by persons doing assessment work.

 

Near the main house is a tool shed for the storage of hand tools, truck repair, etc. It is wired to provide for the use of power tools, and there was evidence of some assay work having been done there. Nearby is an old International truck which has been scavenged for parts, and is now useless to a mining operation. There is one other structure near the tool shed which may have served as a garage or storage building.

 

A building on the Coolidge claim adjacent to the Coolidge Mine appeared to be much younger than the main house. It could not be reached without a four wheel vehicle, but, viewed through binoculars from the Luck mine, appeared to be a two bedroom house or bunkhouse.

 

There is a bunkhouse with kitchen and two bedrooms on the old Columbia townsite surrounded by an assay building, tool shed and a cook house. Nearby is a windmill which provided water to the community. The Humbug Creek flows adjacent to the townsite and appears to provide an ample water supply. There are also corrals and watering basins for pack animals and/or cows.

 

There is a crusher on the property which may be usable. There is also a ruin of a rock walled building which probably served some very early mining party. This ruin appears to be more than a hundred years old.

 

The roads on the claims are in good repair for four wheel vehicles, and can readily be used immediately without further work being necessary. Since road building is a major cost in a mining operation, the significance of good roads on the property should not be underestimated.

 

Since the geologist’s report recommends keeping the property for further development, and since the price of gold is predicted by substantial economists to rise due to a widely expected monetary inflation within the next five years, this property offers an opportunity to capitalize on these economic conditions.

 

PERSONS WHO HAVE REVIEWED THE BLM FILES ON THESE CLAIMS

 

E. P. Larson                                                  3 Jan. 1984

15601 No. 19th Ave.

Phoenix, AZ 85023

 

Carolyn McDowell                                                  6 Jan. 1984

8935 West Peoria                                                17 Jan. 1984

Peoria, AZ 85345

 

Carl Anderson                                               6 Mar. 1984

P. O. Box 270270

Tampa, FL 33688

 

David R. Nielsen                                         26 Mar. 1984

15 South 1250 East

Bountiful, UT 84010

 

Frederick P. Schwartz                                   26 Apr. 1984

3142 Scenic View Dr. #8

Elko, NV 89801

 

James A Hutchinson                                     27 Aug. 1984

P. O. Box 1949

Glendale, AZ 85311

 

Joe Stocks                                                  14 Dec. 1984

1911 Murphy Lane

Moab, UT 84532

 

Larry D. Robinson                                        18 Dec. 1984

12419 No. 29th Place

Phoenix, AZ

 

Ray DeMoss                                                  3 Jan. 1985

2739 No. Pierce

Phoenix, AZ

 

James E. Craddock                                       26 Apr. 1985

759 North 550 East

Orem, UT 84057

 

The last assessment affidavit was signed by E. P. Larson, address cited above, in behalf of the present owners, Richard D. and Jo Ann Losee.

 

EXPLORATION OF HUMBUG MINING DISTRICT

By

Forest Brayshaw

January 1974

 

                        Humbug Mining District

Sections 13 & 18, Township 8 North, Ranges 1 East to 1 West. Yavapai County, Arizona.

 

Area:

 

                        1 placer claim, 22 lode claims, 496 acres.

 

Ore Type:

 

                        Approximately half of the claims extend into Humbug Creek, there fore suggesting placer mining. Some of these claims also have hard rock ore. The remaining claims are lode or hard rock. Placer sampling indicates gold from 0.5 to 2.0 oz. per ton, or yard. Silver runs from 0.5 to 2.0 oz. per yard and a trace of platinum. There is reason to believe that in some areas of the old stream bed gold could go as high at 10 to 15 oz. per yard with higher values of silver and platinum. Sampling of all ore piles, shafts, and open cuts on the lode claims indicates values of gold from 0.5 to 12 oz. per ton. Some samples have gone as high as 20 oz. per ton. A table of samples taken from the claims may be found on page 7.

 

Recovery Method:

 

                        A total of 2,000 lbs from all 23 claims was hand crushed to 100 mesh. 12 samples (2 lbs each) were run each day for 83 days. From each 2 lb. sample 60 grams were taken and panned. The gold was recovered with mercury. 2 milligrams of gold = 1 oz per ton.

 

Concentrates:

 

                        The black sand from all the concentrates was saved and run through a low temperature plasma. On most samples it has increased the recovery from gold and platinum. It is not yet know why it doesn’t work on all samples. In most cases it has increased the values 1.5 to 2 times.

 

 

 

 

 

Placer Recovery:

 

                        In trying to determine the best method to use for placer recovery, a Pan-O-Matic Model 850 was used on 4,000 lbs. of placer ore. 2,000 lbs. were run with water and then the machine was converted to run dry and another 2,000 lbs were run. The wet method is approximately 25% more efficient in recovery and at least 50% faster than the dry method.

 

Silver:

 

                        Some silver is present in both the hard rock and placer ore. The average ratio of gold to silver seems to be about 100:1 for the placer ore. The average for the hard rock is much higher, with silver sometimes going higher than gold.

 

Platinum:

 

                        This metal has been evident to both hard rock and placer but no quantitative analysis, has been made doe to the small amounts of ore handled.

 

Areas to be Mined:

 

                        Based on the recovery of gold from samples taken, the best placer mining seems to e on the North Field, Owl and Star Placer claims. These three claims are all within 600 feet of the bunk house. There are other good areas, but these are close and are quite easy to get into. When the time comes for hard rock mining the Harrison, Yankee Maid 1 & 2, Gold Path and Lunan 1, 2, 3, & 4 are the best claims.

 

Method of Mining:

 

                        For placer mining a backhoe with a front loader can be used to remove the overburden and stockpile the pay dirt. The backhoe can also be used for quite a large part of the hard rock mining.

 

Water:

 

                        One or more wells must be dug in order to run the necessary recovery equipment. To have a 8” well drilled to a depth of 200 feet will cost approximately $2,000.00. The last rain we had at the mine produced some good evidence of where water could be found at depths of 30-40 feet. These wills could be dug with a backhoe in a very short period of time and will produce enough water for the entire operation.

 

Conclusions:

 

                        There have been quite a few nuggets taken from Humbug Creek over the past 65 years. I have found a few myself so I know they are there. Placer gold, or free gold, is washed out from a rich deposit and carried down stream for a distance, there to be covered over with rock and sand. Whenever I find a nugget my first thought is: “I wonder where that came from? In taking placer samples from just north of our claims to 12 mile south of our claims I have noticed one very evident fact: the higher values of placer ore are within our claims. This means that the free gold being washed into Humbug Creek comes from Gold. Mt. and our claims cover the entire west side of that mountain. It’s the west side that drains into the creek. Some of the hard rock samples I have taken from drainage areas on Gold Mt. have gone as high, as 400 oz. per ton. I have some samples that show large amounts of free gold. I believe the question is no longer: “Is there gold here?”, but rather what is the best way to find it and recover it?

 

Figure 24

Windmill at Columbia, Arizona Photograph courtesy: Mr. & Mrs. Losee

 

 

Claim                                  No. Samples      Avg. per ton

 

Uncle Jim No. 1                   10                     0.5 oz.

Uncle Jim No. 2                   10                     0.5

Coolidge                            35                     1.0

Golden Glint                       10                     1.0

Star Placer                         25                     1.0

Owl                                   10                     2.0

Harrison                             75                     3.0

Lucky                                 50                     2.0

Blaze                                 50                     2.0

T.N.T.                                50                     2.0

Red Star                            50                     2.0

Top Notch No. 1                  50                     2.0

Top Notch No. 2                  50                     2.0

Gold Cliff                           50                     2.0

North Field                         75                     3.0

Yankee Maid No. 1              75                     3.0

Yankee Maid No. 2              75                     3.0

Gold King                           50                     3.0

Gold Path                           100                   4.0

Lunan No. 1                        25                     2.0

Lunan No. 2                        25                     2.0

Lunan No. 3                        25                     2.0

Lunan No. 4                        25                     2.0

 

Figure 25

Columbia Claims (Lode) 1987. Photograph courtesy: Mr. & Mrs. Losee

 

DIRECTIONS FOR FINDING COLUMBIA, ARIZONA

 

THE FOLLOWING DIRECTIONS WERE WRITTEN IN 1974.

SIGNS, LANDMARKS AND ROADS CHANGE OVER TIME.

WE ASSUME NO RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE CURRENT ACCURACY OF THESE DIRECTIONS.

 

Proceed to Morristown, Arizona from Phoenix on Arizona Highway 93 (US 60/89).

 

Turn north (right) on Castle Hot Spring Road. This road does not appear on the Arizona Highway map. Proceed north on Castle Hot Springs Road which becomes an unimproved, graded road within less than a mile where it transects Arizona Highway 74. After traversing 20.5 miles of Castle Hot Springs Road, a fork is encountered marked with a sign “Castle H. S.”. Take the right fork and proceed on the wide graded road another .95 miles where an unmarked turn is encounter which must be ignored.

 

The nest opportunity to turn off the road occurs 2.5 miles at the fork for the Champie School. Take the right fork at this point and proceed .4 miles to the next fork. Take the right fork and proceed an additional .9 miles to where the road appears to end at a “T”. This intersection in unmarked, as are most of the intersections. Turn left at this point and follow the road (locally termed the “Morristown Road”) and travel 1.9 miles to a gate which is the entry to the VX Ranch. Pass through the gate, close it, and take a right fork which does not appear to be a road. It looks more like a place where the stock go to water at the creek which you must cross, and where the road becomes considerably less hospitable.

 

Follow this “road” for 2.1 miles where a fork occurs which is the access road to the Humbug mine on the left and the Columbia Claims on the right. Again, the road seems to disappear as if crossing a creek bed. If a windmill does not appear within three tenths of a mile, you have taken the wrong road.

 

Proceed on this trail another 1.6 miles to the main gate of the Columbia claims. After passing through the gate and closing it, drive carefully to the main house, about a tenth of a mile.

 

THESE DIRECTIONS WERE WRITTEN IN 1974.

SIGNS, LANDMARKS AND ROADS CHANGE OVER TIME.

WE ASSUME NO RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE CURRENT ACCURACY OF THESE DIRECTIONS.


PRIMARY REPORT

ECONOMIC GEOLOGY OF THE COLUMBIA CLAIMS

HUMBUG CREEK, YAVAPAI COUNTY, ARIZONA

 

Prepared for

MR. RICHARD D. LOSEE

 

Prepared by

BERGE EXPLORATION INC.

September 1977

 

PRIMARY REPORT

ECONOMIC GEOLOGY OF THE COLUMBIA CLAIMS

HUMBUG CREEK, YAVAPAI COUNTY, ARIZONA

 

Mr. Richard D. Losee of Bullock and Losee Jewelers, (currently Losee Jewelers) Provo, Utah, has acquired the George W. Walters Claim Group at Columbia, Arizona in the Humbug Mining District. There are in the group, a total of 22 load mining claims and one placer mining claim. All claims are unpatented. The claims are listed below:

 

                        Load (sic) Claims:       Lunan

                                                Lunan No. 2

                                                Lunan No. 3

                                                Lunan No. 4

                                                Gold Path (Cougar)

                                                Gold King

                                                Yankee Maid (Hard Times)

                                                Yankee Maid No. 2

                                                North Field

                                                Gold Cliff

                                                Top Notch

                                                Top Notch No. 2

                                                Harrison M.

                                                Lucky

                                                Red Star

                                                Hilda

                                                Owl

                                                Blaze

                                                T. N. T.

                                                Golden Glint

                                                Coolidge

                                                Uncle Jim No. 1

                                                Uncle Jim No. 2

 

                        Placer Claim:      Star Placer

 

The claims were acquired from Mr. George Walters who presently resides on the property with his wife and acts as a care taker for the Losee’s.

 

The claims are located along Humbug Creek, around the old town of Columbia. Most of the mineral showing and old mines are located on the east tide of Humbug Creek, just west and southwest of Gold Hill.

 

Mines were observed on the Lunan, Gold Path, Yankee Maid, Yankee Maid No. 2, Red Star, Lucky, Harrison M. and Coolidge Claims; and workings were observed on most other claims. Much of the work is obviously near the surface as mine dumps are either small or nearly non-existent. Veins which were observed were thin, but appeared to be quite continuous. The thickest vain observed was at the Lucky Mine where it appeared to be about 3 feet thick.

 

Old reports indicate that the mining commenced about 1880 and was carried on intermittently to about 1908. The ore was ground in arrastres and panned or sluced to recover the gold. Later C.E. Champie operated a 4 stamp mill at Columbia from about 1900 to 1905. Little activity in the area was present until about 1932 when ore was again mined for a couple of years. Test shipments from surface veins and tunnels in the 1930’s netted from 207 tons of ore, and average of 1.5 oz. gold and 3.5 oz. silver and 3.5 percent lead. Ore has been mined from the canyon bottom up the mountain side for a vertical distance of over 1,000 feet. Veins here are on line with the Tip Top Mine located 3 ½ miles northeast of Columbia and there are old mine workings observed throughout most of the intervening distance. The Tip Top Mine was mined to a vertical depth of 1,200 feet. The evidence above indicates a vertical extent of ore deposition of at least 1,000 feet. Ore shoots are not expected to extend for a great distances, but the length may be over a couple of hundreds of feet.

 

The mineralized veins extend through the Pre-Cambrian rocks and seem to cut all rocks present, except those rocks which are in recent origin; ie, alluvium and volcanic rocks. Data reported and observed would seem to indicate the origin of the ore bodies and their vein systems as post-Yavapai Schist, and post-Bradshaw Granite, but Pre-Tertiary sediments and volcanics. In all probability, the veins were formed at the close of the period of the Bradshaw Orogeny in Pre-Cambrian Time, or they were formed in conjunction with igneous activity in early Tertiary time.

 

Mr. George Walters indicated that his experience on the properties indicated about ¼ of the vein system would be mineralized with ore grade mineralization, while ¾ consists of ore grades too low to be economic or where the veins are too thin to be mined economically. The better ore shoots are located where two vain systems intersect or where the vein cuts more competent rock types. The shattering of the rock prior to mineralization seems to be the most important factor in the establishment of ore bodies.

 

The country rock of the area is composed of muscovite schist’s and associated meta-sedimentary rocks. Interspersed, in concordant masses with the mica schist are quartzite and intermediate rocks. These rocks have been disrupted and intruded by quartz-feldspar pegmatite. In places, black tourmaline was observed in the pegmatite veins and dispersed into adjacent meta-sediments.

 

The veins of gold-bearing quartz cut all rock types, and become more prominent in the quartzite and pegmatite. They seem to pinch in the schist and swell in the more brittle rock type. Most ore minerals have been destroyed by oxidation; however, galena, chalcopyrite, pyrite and native gold were observed. The oxidized minerals recognized were malachite, azurite, wulfenite, and a variety of iron oxides. Part of the native gold appears to be primary and much appears to be of secondary origin.

 

The vein systems observed appears to strike in two principal directions. One system appears to run nearly north-south with a tendency to drift northwesterly. The second system has an east, northeast strike. The veins are nearly vertical with the Lucky vein appearing to have about a 70 to 80 degree dip. The rake of ore bodies within individual veins was not observed. The handing wall in the Harrison M. vein dipped northward at about 50 to 60 degrees where observed in the mine. In the Harrison M. Mine, the vein appears to have been off-set by later date faulting and the eastern extension was not found by previous mining.

 

The composite sample of vein material collected from the Lunan, Harrison M and Red Star Mine dumps was ground in a crusher of Columbia and assayed for gold, silver, lead, molybdenum and tungsten. The assay report is attached to this report. It should be emphasized that this sample is indicative of ore rejected while mining as conducted on the properties and should not be considered to represent true ore. The first figure was from a placer grab sample and probably is of little value either as to grade or potential. A proper placer sample would require the processing of about a yard or more of gravel and the assay of the concentrate were obtained.

 

The load sample indicated 0.064 oz Au/ton, 0.48 oz. Ag/ton, 0.78% Pb, 0.05% Mo, and 0.05% WO3. This composite sample should only be considered to represent waste, rejected in initial mining.

 

RECOMMENDATION

 

It is recommended that the claims be retained, and later patented if possible to gain both mineral rights and also surface rights. Assessment work should be diligently accomplished by the owners, with sufficient surface disturbance; ie, road building and excavation to provide proof of labor. It is further recommended that the possibility of a joint venture with a mining company be considered. Selection of a joint venture partner should be done with care as many properties are destroyed if proper mining and geology are not provided. The claims should not be allowed to lapse in any case.

 

 

 

September 16, 1977                                                         (Signature)

                                                        DEFORREST SMOUSE

                                                        Division Geologist


DIARY

 

 

The following reproduced pages were notes by George Walters, made in this

Diary Note Book.

 

 

The following DIARY was recorded by George Walters in 1934 on the dates indicated. It is believed these notations were made shortly after he purchased these claims. When he found a spot the previous owners had missed, he mined and shipped it, similar to a clean-up operation. It is comprised as a log of samples and shipments.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DIARY

and Daily Reminder

A Page a Day for 1935

Yankee Maid Group (North Mines)

Columbia, Post Office

South of Humbug on Humbug Creek

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

601 Harison (sic) Ledge - 64 ft. Tunnel 1934

Date on pages Jan 2-3, 1935

Date sample taken

Sample taken "in" from Adit entrance

Width of Vain

Oz. of gold per ton

 

 

3/16

16 ft

In

8 inch

W

Assay

1.86

 

 

4/12

24 ft

In

6 inch

W

Assay

1.58

 

 

5/3

38 ft

In

8 inch

W

Assay

1.12

 

 

5/30

53 ft

In

8 inch

W

Assay

1.44

 

 

6/8

59 ft

In

12 inch

W

Assay

2.08

 

 

5/8

12 tons to Mill

 

 

 

Assay

1.49

 

 

6/20

22 tons to Mill

 

 

Assay

1.34

 

 

 

34

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

North Harrison Ledge 1934

 

Date on pages Jan 4-5, 1935

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3/16

Cut

High

 

 

4 inch

W

Assay

2.04

4/12

Cut

High

15 ft

In

5 inch

W

Assay

1.83

5/2

Cut

High

99 ft

In

3 inch

W

Assay

0.83

5/30

Cut

High

46 ft

In

4 inch

W

Assay

2.26

6/18

Cut

High

52 ft

In

4 inch

W

Assay

0.64

5/30

Cut

Low

15 ft

In

4 inch

W

Assay

1.83

5/8

16 tons to Mill

 

 

 

 

 

Assay

1.29

6/2

6 tons to Mill

 

 

 

 

 

Assay

1.54

 

22

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lucky Tunnel 1934

 

 

Date on pages Jan 6-7, 1935

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4/16

12 ft

In

6 inch

W

Assay

2.09

 

 

4/16

29 ft

In

5 inch

W

Assay

1.14

 

 

4/16

38 ft

In

5 inch

W

Assay

2.34

 

 

4/16

49 ft

In

6 inch

W

Assay

2.18

 

 

4/16

86 ft

In

4 inch

W

Assay

1.10

 

 

4/16

South Ledge Face

 

 

 

Assay

0.76

 

 

6/4

Old Ore Pile 3 tons to Mill

 

 

 

Assay

3.19

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

119 Lucky Claim High 1934

 

Date on pages Jan 8-9, 1935

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4/8

Face

 

4 inch

W

Assay

2.25

 

 

5/12

15 ft

In

5 inch

W

Assay

1.89

 

 

6/1

29 ft

In

4 inch

W

Assay

2.49

 

 

6/18

26 ft

In

4 inch

W

Assay

2.22

 

 

 

 

Cut Low

 

 

 

 

 

5/12

Face

In

3 inch

W

Assay

2.11

 

 

6/11

12 ft

In

4 inch

W

Assay

0.1

 

 

6/19

34 ft

In

5 inch

W

Assay

2.26

 

 

5/16

6 tons to Mill

 

 

 

Assay

1.84

 

 

6/10

5 tons to Mill

 

 

 

Assay

1.63

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

164 Lucky Claim 1934

 

 

Date on pages Jan 10-11, 1935

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2/19

Cut in Face

 

12 inch

Ch

W

Assay

0.48

3/3

Cut

10 ft

in

14 inch

Ch

W

Assay

0.48

4/11

Cut

24 ft

in

14 inch

Ch

W

Assay

0.79

5/1

Cut

36 ft

in

18 inch

Ch

W

Assay

0.37

6/14

Cut

51 ft

in

16 inch

Ch

W

Assay

1.13

5/2

22 tons to Mill

 

 

 

 

 

Assay

0.54

9/12

32 tons to Mill

 

 

 

 

 

Assay

0.69

 

54

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

159 Lucky Claim 1934

 

 

Date on pages Jan 12-13, 1935

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2/22

Cut

 

 

6 inch

W

Assay

0.86

 

4/12

Cut

 

 

8 inch

W

Assay

1.83

 

5/2

Cut

32 ft

in

8 inch

W

Assay

1.44

 

5/30

Cut

44 ft

in

8 inch

W

Assay

0.54

 

6/18

Cut

52 ft

in

6 inch

W

Assay

3.02

 

5/8

16 tons to Mill

 

 

 

 

Assay

1.64

 

6/18

22 tons to Mill

 

 

 

 

Assay

1.28

 

 

38

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

172 Top Notch Claim 1934

 

Date on pages Jan 14-15, 1935

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3/16

Face

 

6 inch

W

Assay

0.50

 

 

3/28

17 ft

in

6 inch

W

Assay

0.68

 

 

4/18

23 ft

in

7 inch

W

Assay

0.36

 

 

5/2

29 ft

in

7 inch

W

Assay

0.42

 

 

4/16

8 tons to Mill

 

 

 

Assay

0.53

 

 

5/16

11 tons to Mill

 

 

 

Assay

0.48

 

 

 

19

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

178 North Star Claim 1934

 

Date on pages Jan 16-17 1935

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5/2

Face

 

 

6 inch

W

Assay

2.74

 

5/24

Cut

12 ft

in

6 inch

W

Assay

1.84

 

6/3

Cut

18 ft

in

6 inch

W

Assay

2.44

 

6/4

6 tons to Mill

 

 

 

 

Assay

2.05

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

161 Top Notch Claim 1934

 

Date on pages Jan 18-19 1935

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2/18

Cut

Face

 

5 inch

W

Assay

0.40

 

3/2

Cut

16 ft

in

8 inch

W

Assay

1.12

 

4/12

Cut

20 ft

in

6 inch

W

Assay

0.88

 

5/2

Cut

29 ft

in

7 inch

W

Assay

0.68

 

5/30

Cut

36 ft

in

8 inch

W

Assay

0.93

 

6/20

Cut

42 ft

in

5 inch

W

Assay

0.53

 

5/16

18 tons to Mill

 

 

 

 

Assay

0.69

 

6/18

14 tons to Mill

 

 

 

 

Assay

0.59

 

 

32

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

171 Gold Path Claim

 

 

Date on pages Jan 20-21, 1935

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3/1

Face

 

 

8 inch

W

Assay

0.74

 

3/18

12 ft

in

 

5 inch

W

Assay

1.66

 

4/20

28 ft

in

 

7 inch

W

Assay

1.61

 

5/14

36 ft

in

 

7 inch

W

Assay

0.3

 

4/19

12 tons to Mill

 

 

 

 

Assay

0.94

 

5/20

14 tons to Mill

 

 

 

 

Assay

0.86

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

167 Golden Glint Tunnel 1934

 

Date on Pages Jan 22-23,1935

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5/10

East of Winch

 

 

2 inch

W

Assay

2.04

 

5/10

West of Winch

 

 

3 inch

W

Assay

4.03

 

5/10

22 ft

in

 

4 inch

W

Assay

0.22

 

5/30

Top in Stope

 

 

 

 

Assay

1.24

 

6/10

Top in Stope

 

 

 

 

Assay

0.66

 

6/10

West from Winch

 2 ft down

 

 

 

Assay

3.78

 

6/10

13 ft back from

 Face

 

3 inch

W

Assay

1.42

 

6/12

12 ft in Winch

 

 

 

 

Assay

3.16

 

6/18

5 tons to Mill

 

 

 

 

Assay

2.48

 

 

5

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

167-148 Top Notch Claim

 

Date on Pages Jan 24-25, 1935

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3/19

Cut

 

6 inch

W

Assay

1.52

 

 

4/16

Cut

 

8 inch

W

Assay

1.19

 

 

4/29

Cut

 

8 inch

W

Assay

0.88

 

 

5/18

Cut

 

8 inch

W

Assay

1.27

 

 

6/1

Cut

 

8 inch

W

Assay

0.98

 

 

6/15

Cut

 

10 inch

W

Assay

1.08

 

 

6/19

Cut

 

6 inch

W

Assay

6.48

 

 

5/14

24 tons to Mill

 

 

 

Assay

1.04

 

 

6/17

29 tons to Mill

 

 

 

Assay

0.99

 

 

 

53

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

161 - 147 Top Notch Claim 1934

 

Date on Pages Jan 26-27, 1935

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3/12

Old Cut

 

10 ft

in

6 inch

W

Assay

1.65

3/30

Old Cut

 

29 ft

in

8 inch

W

Assay

3.07

4/12

 

 

34 ft

in

8 inch

W

Assay

1.64

5/2

 

 

51 ft

in

5 inch

W

Assay

1.52

6/12

 

 

59 ft

in

5 inch

W

Assay

2.02

6/18

Stope

 

32 ft

in

 

 

 

0.84

 5/3

17 tons to Mill

 

 

 

 

 

Assay

1.83

6/18

19 tons to Mill

 

 

 

 

 

Assay

1.29

 

 36

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

169-110 Cugar (sic) Tunnel 1934

 

Date on Pages Jan 28-29, 1935

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5/20

 

 

20 ft

in

4 inch

W

Assay

3.50

5/20

 

 

46 ft

in

5 inch

W

Assay

0.18

5/20

 

Winch

12 ft

down

4 inch

W

Assay

0.83

 

 

Winch

23 ft

down

5 inch

W

Assay

2.48

 

 

Winch

32 ft

down

5 inch

W

Assay

2.18

6/12

4 tons to Mill

 

 

 

 

 

Assay

2.48

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

170 Golden Blaze Claim

 

Date on Pages Jan 30-31, 1935

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5/12

Face – in Old

tunnel

 

 

6 inch

W

Assay

0.8

5/28

3 ft – in from old

face

 

 

6 inch

W

Assay

2.56

6/10

8 ft – in from old

face

 

 

6 inch

W

Assay

2.00

6/18

10 ft – in from

old face

 

 

6 inch

W

Assay

1.35

6/18

5 tons to Mill

 

 

 

 

 

Assay

1.74

 

Tunnel in 75 ft

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

150 Top Notch 1934

 

 

Date on Pages Feb 1-2, 1935

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3/12

Face of old tunnel

 

4 inch

W

Assay

0.63

 

 

3/30

12 ft

in

6 inch

W

Assay

1.69

 

 

4.16

29 ft

in

8 inch

W

Assay

0.28

 

 

4/30

42 ft

in

8 inch

W

Assay

1.18

 

 

5/20

56 ft

in

8 inch

W

Assay

0.94

 

 

6/20

68 ft

in

8 inch

W

Assay

0.78

 

 

4/12

16 tons to Mill

 

 

 

Assay

1.11

 

 

5/10

22 tons to Mill

 

 

 

Assay

0.83

 

 

6/17

28 tons to Mill

 

 

 

Assay

1.26

 

 

 

66

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

155 T and T Claim 1934

 

Date on Pages Feb 3-4, 1935

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3/18

Cut

 

6 inch

W

Assay

0.46

 

 

4/2

Cut

 

8 inch

W

Assay

0.88

 

 

4/30

Cut

 

6 inch

W

Assay

1.23

 

 

5/16

Cut

 

8 inch

W

Assay

1.12

 

 

5/14

Cut

 

6 inch

W

Assay

0.83

 

 

6/19

Cut

 

4 inch

W

Assay

13.94

 

 

5/10

6 tons to Mill

 

 

 

Assay

1.02

 

 

6/16

8 tons to Mill

 

 

 

Assay

1.24

 

 

 

14