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they  stumbled  on  a  large  deposit  of   to  comment  that maybe  the  gold  was  as   mass of cattle of about 400  head.  I  could
         yellowish sand and gravel. Thinking they   good  as  the  music,  at  that.   see  Bob's  head  and  shoulders  as  he
         had  just  made  the  largest  strike  in   The  Bummer  Hill  affair  died  out  as   fought  to  get  through,  then  he  disap-
         history,  the  gents  grabbed  up  all  they   a  major  problem  when  the  Territorial   peared.  I  feared  his  horse  had  gone
         could  carry  and  headed  for  the  nearest   Legislature  passed  laws  providing  for  a   down,  but  Bob  came  up  again  and  there
         saloon  to  celebrate.             prison sentence for the possession o_t bum   was  Harol  under  his  arm.
           A  saloonkeeper  almost  took  some  of   gold,  and  the  courts  backed  up  tne  in-  As  the  Indian  worked  his  way  out  of
         the  stuff,  in  fact  he  even  had. some  on   tent  of  the  law  with  liberal  interpreta-  the  herd  and  came  toward  me,  all  I
         his scales, and possibly a  less experienced   tions.                  could  do  was  to  stand  there  and  cry.
         man  would  have  accepted  it.  Then  he   Honesty  among mining camp  denizens   I  walked  back  to  the  house  beside  them
         declined,  saying  something  about  the   wasn't considered a  particular virtue, but   holding on to his stirrup.  He tried to ex-
         amount  of  the  "dust"  it  took  to  weigh   prudence  was.  And  possession  of  yellow   plain to us that no animal was worth the
         up.  He  sent  the  miners  to  the  assay  of-  sand,  gold  covered  lead,  or  any  of  the   life  of one little boy.  I  wish  that  I  could
         fice in Placerville. They came back crest-  other  fraudulent  materials;  became  im-  tell  it  in  the  words  that  he  used  but  I
         fallen.                            prudent, to say the very least.  The  Bum-  cannot.  Yet he  made  us  understand  that
          The  yellowish  sand  and  gravel  looked   mer  Hill  hoax  was  over.   we  should  be  willing  to  give  our  best  to
         a  little  like  gold,  and  it  was  heavy.  It                       protect our property, but should not give
         just  didn't  happen  to  have  value.  The   CATTLE  AND  KIDS        our  lives.
         yellow  sand  became  known  as  "Bummer   By  S.  E.  (Ed)  Bogart      Bob  was  a  wonderful  man  and  many
         Hill  Dust"  in  honor  of  the  unfortunate   WHEN I  was  just  a  boy,  almost  sixty   were  the  lessons  he  taught  Harol  and
         fellows  who  made  the  original  find.   ~   years  ago,  we lived on  a  homestead   me  that helped  us  through  the  years.
          After  that,  with  men  and  money  be-                                Some  time  the  next  day  he found  our
         ing  what  they  are,  and  mining  camp   inside  a  large cattle  ranch  in  northwest-  cow  and  brought  her  back  to  us.  And
                                            ern  Kansas.  One  of  the  jobs  that  I  and
         morals  being no better than  they had  to   my little brother,  who  was  only  seven  at   the  next  spring  she  had  a  little  black
         be,  it  was  only  a  matter  of  time  until                         calf which  was  the  pride  and  joy of my
         Boise  Basin's  more  enterprising  gentry   the  time,  had  was  to  draw  water  from   brother.  Kids  don't  worry  long  about
         were  mixing  the  sa-nd  of  Bummer  Hill   a  well which was located about 100 yards   narrow escapes,  and  when  I  think  back,
                                            west  of  the  house  in  a  draw.  We  could
         with  a  little  of  the  real  thing  and  pass-  not  see  the  house  from  the  well.  It  was   it  was  just  one  more  of  the  good  times
         ing it off on  unsuspecting gamblers  and                              we  had  there  on  the  old  homestead.
        barkeeps.                           no little  job for  us,  as  I  was  only eleven
                                            at  the  time  and  the  well  was  105  feet
          When  blended  in  proper  proportions,   deep  and  cased  with  six-inch  galvanized   The  Boom  Days  of Staging
         Bummer  Hill  Dust  couldn't  be  detected   casing.  The bucket  was  of four-inch  cas-  (Continued from page 24)
         by  the  naked  eye.  The  only  place  it   ing  about  five  feet  long,  with  a  bail  at   the  operation  was•successful,  it  soon  be-
         showed  up  was  in  the assay  office  melt-  the  top.  a  wooden  plug  in  the  bottom_ ,  came  know  as  the  "Jackass  Mail"  be-
         ing  pots,  and  the  treachery  was  discov-  with  a  hole  in  it,  and  a  leather  flap  on   cause it took so long to get mail through.
         ered  too  late  to  stop  the  flow  of  the   the  inside.  It would let the water in,  and   In  a  further  effort to  get mail  to  and
         stuff into the  Basin's commerce.  In  fact,   the  weight  of  the  water  held  it  closed   from  California,  the  Post  Office  Depart-
         when a  committee from the miner's asso-  when  the  bucket  was  lifted  up.   ment  let  a  contract  to  John  Butterfield,
         ciation  rode  out  to  destroy  the -deposit.   We  would  let  the  bucket  down  in  the   the  organizer  of  the  American  Express
         they found that it had been nearly mined   well  and then  pull it back up by turning   Company,  to  carry  mail  from  St.  Louis,
         out.  The  Basin  boys  had  recognized  a   the  windlass.  It was  emptied  into  a  tub   Missouri  to  San  Francisco  by  way  of
         good  thing  when  they  saw  one,  and "'   for  our one  and only  cow,  Bess.  While  I   Oklahoma  Territory,  El  Paso  and  Los
         packed the  sand off to  add  to their min-  was  drawing  water  each  afternoon,  my   Angeles,  a  distance  of  approximately
         ing  profits,  just  as  the  cafes  in  town   brother  would  go  get Bess  and  lead  her   2,800  miles.
         added ground-up walnut shells to the cof-  down  to  drink.  This afternoon  that I  am   Since  this  contract  carried  an  annual
         fee  to  make  it  go  farther.   _   thinking of  started  out  as  usual.  I  went   subsidy  of  $600,000,  Butterfield  bought
         - After that,  for  a  time,  it became  very   to  the  well  and  Harol  went  to  get  the   coaches  and  fine  horses,  and  with  ex-
         hard  to  spend  gold  "dust"  in  the  area.   cow.  She  was  picketed  just north  of the   perienced  preparation,  put  the  line  into
         Even  the  hated  greenbacks  had  their   house.  We had  not  seen  the  range cattle   service.  The  Butterfield  Overland  Mail
         day.  Some  of  the  merchants  wouldn't   away  down  in  the  flat  or  I  would  not   began  a  semi-weekly  service  on  Septem-
        take  anything  that  hadn't  been  through   have  let  him  go  by himself.  We  always   ber  15,  1858,  and  put  the  first  stage-
        the  assay office melting pots.  Others  de-  had  to  shut the cow  in  the  barn  and  we   coach  through  to  San  Francisco  on  a
        vised  intricate  devices  to  measure  the   children  h~d  to  stay  inside  when  the   twenty-five  day  schedule,  arriving  Octo-
        volume  as  well  as  the  weight  of  the   range  cattle  were  around.  They  were   ber  10 ..
        "dust,"  knowing  that  the  sand  took  up   black.  curly-haired  and  very' mean,  and   This  in  reality  was  the  first  transcon-
        more  space  per  ounce.            would  attack  anyone  on  foot.    tinental  overland  mail  service.  Though
                                              When  Harol  loosed  the  cow  that  day   the primary purpose was the carrying of
        THE  ONES  to  suffer  most  from  the   she  saw the  other cattle  and  started  to-  mail,  the  law  required  that 'it be  carried
            phony  metal  were  the  Chinese.  The ·  ward them, and a  seven-year-old boy does   by  relays  of  stagecoaches  and  it,  there-
        "China  Boys"  had  little  truck  with  the   not have much chance to hold a  cow.  But   fore,  became  the  first  transcontinental
        assayers-or  any  other  white  man,  for   the  little  fellow  just hung -onto  the  rope   passenger  line,  as · well.
        that matter.  When they had an excess of ·  and  tried  to  stop  her.  When  the _ Black   Beginning  with  this  service,  a  pas-
        the  yellow  metal  they  would  deposit  it   Angus  range cattle heard her bawl, they   senger  could  take  the  Baltimore  and
        with  the  head  of  their  Tong  for  safe-  all  came  running.       Ohio  Railroad  to  St.  Louis,  the  railroad
        keeping.  The  Tongs,  in  turn, would  keep   I  heard  her bawl,  too,  and  ran  up  the   train to Tipton, Missouri, and there begin
        the gold in its original form  for fear the   hill  to  see  why.  I  tried  to  call  to  Harol   the  remaining  2,800  miles by stagecoach,
        assayers  would  steal  some  of  it  in  the   but  he  did  not  hear  me.  Instead  of   to  complete  a  transcontinental  journey.
        ing-ot-making  process.      ·      Brother  letting  go  the  rope  and  lying   Waterman  Ormsby,  a  reporter  for  the
          They were consequently the last to dis-  down.  he  just hung on.   -  New  York  Herald,  was  sent  out  by  his
        cover the truth of the Bummer Hill  Dust   _Bob Weatherhead, an Indian man who   editors  to  make  this  complete  westbound
        rumors,  and  when  the  whole  thing  was   was  riding  by,  saw  the  cattle  all  run-  trip  on  the  first  run.  His  reports  and
        over.  owned  more  $16-an-ounce  yellow   ning  and,  of  course.  stopped  to  watch   diary  are  now  a  matter  of  history  as
        sand than any other mining group in the   them.  Seeing my brother, he  tried  to  get   recorded  in  the  Huntington  Library
        entire  West.  With  the  inter-Tong trans-  to  him  before  the  cattle  did.  I  was  run-  volume,  The  Butterfield  Overland  Mail.
        fer  of  funds,  a  portion  of  the  Bummer   ning  as  fast  as  I  could  to  help  Harol,   Two  things  augered  against  the  But- ·
        Hill  Dust made its way into nearly every   and  still  calling  for  him  to  stop.  but  it   terfield  Overland  Mail  to  San  Francisco.
        other  Chinese  community.  From  San   was  no  use.  I  can  still  see  Bob . lying   The  schedule  was  twenty-five  days  and
        Francisco  to  Denver,  the  yellow  sand   down  over  his  horse's  neck  and  hear   the  route  was  through  the  South.  The
        showed  up  in  amounts  varying  from  a   him  holler  as  only  an  Indian  can.  I. saw   route  was  considered  vulnerable  in  event
        few  grains  to  wheelbarrow  loads.   the  smoke  from  his  six-shooter  as  he   of civil war, and operations were brought
          In Silver City, Idaho Territory. a group   fired  over the  herd  trying to  stop  them.   to  a  halt, as feared,  soon  after the firing
        of  Chinese  merchants  hired  the  local   Then  I _saw my brother disappear as the   on  Fort Sumter in March,  1861.  The last
        brass  band  to  play  for  a  funeral,  and   cattle  closed  around  him.   through  mail  over  the  route  arrived
        paid  the  group  with  dust  liberally  cut   I  stopped  and  stood  there  knowing  I   April  6,  1861.
        with the  sand of Bummer's  Hill-a situ-  was  unable  to  help.  As  I  watched,  it   The  Central  Route,  considered  in-
        ation  that,  when  discovered,  caused  the   seemed  to  me  that  Bob's  horse  never   operable  because  of  the  crossing  of  the
        local  newspaper,  the  Owyhee  Avalanche,   faltered  as  it  plunged  into  that  milling   Continental  Divide,  the  Sierras  and  the
        50                                                                                              True  West
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