June 28, 1902: “With the exception of the Homestake mine at South Dakota, and the mines of Alaska, the two largest stamp mills on the Pacific coast are in Southern California. One at the Golden Crock mines at Hedges, San Diego County, Cal., and the other at the Yellow Aster mine at Randsburg Cal.” –Pullman Herald
September 06, 1902: “OF THE GREAT YELLOW ASTER MINE AT RANDSBURG the Bakersfield Californian says: The Yellow Astor, which is the backbone of the town, has developed into one of the greatest mines of the country. The big mountain where the rich ledges have been tunneled in all directions and down to a level of 800 feet. It Is said that more than fifteen miles of track have been laid, over which the ore carload by carload is brought to the immense crusher near the entrance. The entire interior of the mine is lighted with electricity and within some 150 men are at work. The ore is not a high grade, but the company’s facilities are such that it can be reduced at a minimum cost, and It is claimed that rock at as low a value as $3 can be worked with profit. The two mills aggregate 130 stamps, but on account of the scarcity of water but 100 stamps are now in use and’ these in the new and larger mill. The entire milling capacity is 500 tons daily, and it is the opinion of experts that it will require many years to exhaust the vast body of ore within the holdings of the company.” – San Francisco Call
September 21, 1902: “MINERS VOTE TO STRIKE– Will Tie Up All Kern County Gold Producers. — Unions in Randsburg District Decide to Walk Out–Trouble Results From Refusal to Raise Wages. RANDSBURG, Sept. 20.—All of the miners belonging to the unions of Kern County are to be affected by strikes on October 1. This is what the unions of Randsburg and Mojave have decided upon. In all about 1000 miners, a population of 10,000, and an aggregate capital of $10,000,000 will be drawn into the struggle. Special Dispatch to The Call. The friction between the miners and mine owners of Kern County is of long standing, It was recently greatly increased by the action of the management of the Yellow Aster Company of Randsburg in refusing to grant the car men an increase of wages from $2 50 to $3 a day. The miners of Randsburg demand that car men and shovelers shall receive the same wages as miners, in order that the companies shall employ more skilled men underground has been a serious difficulty between the Echo Mining Company and its employees on the question of wages. The foreman of the Echo mine discharged one union miner because of remarks whichthe latter made concerning the food supplied to the miners. The first symptoms of a strike were shown at Mojave last Wednesday, when the miners of the Echo mine were discharged. What reasons the Echo Company had for its .action are not exactly known. It is claimed by the miners that the main purpose of the Echo Company is to displace union miners with nonunion men. The company itself declaresthat the men were laid off en masse because of a lack of water to operate its mill. The foreman furthermore informed the miners at the time that they should consider it as compulsory for them, to board at the-company boarding house, and, gave them to understand that they were to be discharged individually, or collectively if they should in any manner criticize the fare. The Exposed Treasure Company was afterward called upon by the committee of the Mojave Miners’ Union and prevailed upon to formally recognize the same rate of wages. Now It appears to the union that the Echo Company has reconsidered its action by the discharge of the miners. Then the Miners’ Union of Mojave appointed a committee to wait upon the foreman and “invite” him to leave the community. The committee took the foreman in person to the boundaries of the Echo’- Mining Company’s property. Through the intervention of the superintendent the foreman was “allowed” to resume his duties at the mine, and he subsequently retracted the obnoxious statements made by him to the miners, which the superintendent branded as unauthorized. One result was that the Echo Company recognized the union’s contention, that the wages around the mines at Mojave are $3 a day, and not $2 and board, as suggested by ‘the foreman.” – San Francisco Call
October 18, 1902: “YELLOW ASTER—a committee of miners and the superintendent of this mine at Randsburg have signed a statement that there is no trouble between the miners and that company, and that no strike is pending as reports have said. There is no dissatisfaction between the miners and the company either as to wages or treatement. Eugene H. Barton is superintendent and John Singleton is manager.” – The Engineering and Mining Journal
May 22, 1903: “MINERS STRIKE ABUNDANT GOLD –Rich Discovery at Randsburg Property Special Dispatch to The Call. SAN BERNARDINO. May 21- C. A. Burcham, principal owner of the Yellow Aster mine, brought the news here today “of a great strike in that famous property. The strike was made a few days ago 250 feet below the last pay ore in the mine and as yet there is no way of determining the extent of the ledge encountered. The strike took place at the 1260-foot level. The miners have cross cut forty feet and have as yet failed to encounter the hanging wall. The ore is fully as rich as the products of the mine in the past and the owners are elated over the prospect. The new strike has revived the mining industry in Randsburg, where the mine is located, and the town is considerably excited. Many old-time prospectors of this vicinity are making preparations to leave for the desert town.” — The San Francisco Call
June 11, 1903: “Special Dispatch to The Call. The Yellow Aster Company discriminates between the miners and the muckers. The miners get $3.00 a day, and the muckers, who work alongside of them and do equally as hard, if not harder, work, receive but $2 50. This is an injustice to the muckers.” . John Singleton” of the Yellow Aster Company, in an interview, said: “The Yellow Aster. Mining Company is now paying its employees higher wages than are paid on the mother lode, and the company will not increase these wages, no. matter what the union may demand. The Yellow Aster will be closed down and the men who are now receiving high wages for eight hours of work may find better employment if they can. An eight hour day for a miner means six hours work, and we certainly shall not listen to any demand for higher wages.” – San Francisco
Call June 11, 1903: “ STRIKE AT RANDSBURG — Miners and Mill Men Insist Upon the Butte Scale. Bakersfield Cal. Cat June 10 — A special to the Californian from Randsburg says; At 7 o’clock this morning every man employed in the Yellow Astor mines and mill walked out. The mill ran until 11o’clock and then stopped. About 300 men are affected. Everything here he is very quiet and orderly. The Yellow Astor owners say they will remain idle permanently rather than to give in to t the strikers. The shafts will closed by bulkheads and as the mine is a dry one no damage be done. Today is the Yellow Astor payday and many of the unmarried men will probably leave here at once. The business men are feeling very blue over the prospect Coming on top of of the recent great fire this strike is most disastrous to the camp. The miners for are asking $3.50 per day in place of $3 and the muckers $3.00 a day instead of $2.50.” – Salt Lake Herald
June 11, 1903: RANDSBURG, June 10.— W. A. Linn, formerly president of the Miners Union, in talking of the strike, said: – ‘A vote was taken last night by the Miners Union on the strike question, and at 7 o’clock this morning every man employed in the Yellow Aster mine and mill walked out. About 300 men are affected. ‘Everything here is very-quiet and orderly. The Yellow Aster people say the mine and mill will remain idle permanently rather than give in to the strikers. The shafts will be closed by bulkheads and as the mine is a dry one no damage will be done. The business men are feeling very blue over the prospects. Coming on top of the fire, the strike is most disastrous to the camp.’” – San Francisco Call
June 12, 1903: “YELLOW ASTER MINING AND MILLING COMPANY.” By E. H. Barton, Superintendent.” “BAKERSFIELD, June 11.— Although all is reported quiet at Randsburg: and there has been no violence so far as known, the Yellow Aster Mining Company has become alarmed and is appealing for protection. No effort has been made to work the mines with non-union men and the company has intimated that it would close them. To-day, however, the following: telegram was received at the Sheriff’s office from Superintendent B. H. Barton at Randsburg: “Sheriff Kelly, Bakersfield: You are hereby notified that a strike is in progress at the Yellow Aster mines and that covert threats, have been made to destroy company’s property. The company respectfully requests you to adopt such measures as will protect the same. “YELLOW ASTER MINING AND MILLING COMPANY.” By E. II. Barton, Superintendent.” – San Francisco Call
June 14, 1903: “STATEMENT MADE THAT OLD WAGE SCHEDULE CANNOT BE CHANGED – STRIKE CAUSES CESSATION OF BUSINESS IN THE TOWN. — “BAKERSFIELD. June 13. — Because of the miners’ strike at Randsburg all business is at a standstill and merchants are giving no credit. The camp is practically dead. A special from Randsburg says: All men employed on the Consolidated Mining and Milling Company’s properties were called out last night. The St. Elmo group of mines are closed down and Manager Ericson has gone East. A report this morning says that the men on the Baltic, in the Stringer district, have come out. The unmarried men are leaving town rapidly, some going prospecting and some leaving for their homes and different mining town3 of the State. The Yellow Aster Company has sent all its mules to pasture. One of the officers of the company says the mines will remain closed permanently unless the men will work at the old scale. A year ago the company gave a mortgage of $100,000 to Paul Morgan of Chicago. This was paid off on May 26 of this year, two months before due.” – San Francisco Call
June 14, 1903: “RANDSBURG DEAD FOR BUSINESS PURPOSES. Bakersfield Cal. June 13. Because of the miner strike all business is it at a standstill and the camp is practically dead. A special from says all the Consolidated Mining men employed on Consolidated Mine Inc. properties were called out last night. The St Elmo group of Mines is closed down and Man Manager Erickson has gone east. A report says that the men on the Baltic in the Stinger district have come out. One of the officers of the Yellow Aster Company says the mines will remain closed permanently unless the men will work at the old scale. Business is at a standstill and merchants give no credit to anyone.” –Salt Lake Herald
June 27,1903 : “KERN COUNTY—All the employees of the Yellow Aster M. & M. Co., near Randsburg, numbering over 200 are out on a strike because of a demand by the union for a 60 cents a day increase in wages. The mills have been cleaned up and the mules sent to pasture. The St. Elmo group of the Johannesburg G. M. Co. has shut down and Manager Ericson has gone to New York. The Butte Con. M. Co. men are out, as also those on the Baltic mine. The Santa Ana is paying the 50 cents increase asked. C. A. Burcham, part owner of the Yellow Aster mine, says the company will not give in to the demands of the men for higher wages, and that the statement that the Yellow Aster was or is for sale is in error. The merchants of Randsburg are hesitating before rebuilding the property destroyed by fire.” – The Mining and Scientific Press
July 4, 1903: “THE MINER’S STRIKE at Randsburg has not yet been settled, and many people are daily leaving the camp. The Napoleon Consolidated has shut down and discharged its men, and the Yellow Aster and other prominent mines continue idle. The manager of the Yellow Aster states that the mine will not be reopened until the men return to work on the old rate of wages. The mills are being cleaned up and the shafts will be covered and the tunnels bullheaded.” — The Engineering and Mining Journal
July 11, 1903: “There is not sign yet of any improvement in the strike conditions at Randsburg, Kern County, where many mines have been closed down, including the larger ones employing many hundreds of men. The Yellow Aster people declare they will continue closed down indefinitely until the miners listen to reason. Meantime, the miners have taken up prospecting in that region, both in the mountains and the desert, an occupation not at all desirable during the exceedingly hat summer months. .” — The Engineering and Mining Journal
July 18, 1903: “John D. Ackerman, an attorney, 606 Montgomery Street, was released from custody by Judge Cook yesterday on a writ of habeas corpus. He was arrested on a warrant from Kern County charging him with a misdemeanor. He was accused of having sent some men to work at the Yellow Aster mine at Randsburg, knowing there was no work there for them. The writ was granted on the ground that if any offense was committed it was in this city and county and not in Kern County.” — The San Francisco Call
August 1, 1903: “A NEW CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION== The Desert Mine Operators’ association has been formed in Los Angeles to include mine owners in Southern California, Southern Nevada and Arizona. The object stated is “to foster and develop the mining industry in all its branches in the district covered by the Association.” The officers include John Singleton, president and manager of the Yellow Aster mine at Randsburg, Kern County, president; J. Hammond, of Searchlight district, Nev., vice-president; and F. S. Hicks, of Los Angeles, interested in the Stringer District of Randsburg, secretary and treasurer. The executive committee is to consist of representative men from different prominent districts. The platform of the new association is to the affect that, “We thoroughly believe in the principle of equal rights to all and special privileges to none, and therefore be it resolved that we, the Desert Mine Operators’ Association, declare in the employment of labor we shall not discriminate against non-union men.”
Judging from this expression it would seem that the prime object of the association was to band together the employers and operators to resist strikes among the miners. The president, Mr. Singleton, is a large owner in the Yellow Aster mine, now closed owing to strikes, and the vice-president is from a camp where they recently had a strike. An organization similar to this was formed in San Francisco recently by operators in the Mother Lode counties, but it has thus far effected very little, because its members settled affairs with their men about as they pleased and without reference to the rules of the association. In fact, in the first contest, the miners rather got the better of it, and other strikes have since occurred, where the men got the raise of wages asked. The new association in Los Angeles covers a very wide territory, and it will be hard to get operators to “pull together” when camps are as isolated and far apart, and where the interests of various sections are so different. It will be interesting to note whether the Southern California mine operators make more of a success of their association than did their northern brethren. .” — The Engineering and Mining Journal
August 8, 1903: “AT THE FIRST MEETING of the Desert Mine Operators’ Association, in Los Angeles, 40 odd companies sent in applications for membership, indicating considerable interest. Among those which have joined are the Yellow Aster, of Randsburg; Stanford and St. Elmo, of Johannesburg; Bagdad and Chase mines, in Bagdad District, San Bernardino County; Exposed Treasure, and others of Mohave District, Kern County; the mines of Virginia Dale District and other Southern California properties. From Arizona, the Arizona Wallapi Mining Company of Chloride and Gold Road and Leland of Mohave. From Nevada the Nevada Keystone and Nevada, of Yellow Pine, and all the companies of Searchlight District. The Executive Committee consists of John Singleton, of the Yellow Aster (president); J. F. Harrington, of the Quartette Company of Searchlight, (vice-president); Frank J. Hicks, (secretary); G. H. Hooper, John Seward, E. H. Stagg and Julian P. Jones. Since the Randsburg strike miners in other desert regions have threatened to tie up properties from “sympathy and the association will endeavor to prevent the spread of labor troubles.” – The Engineering and Mining Journal
August 8, 1903: “Yellow Aster—No attempt is being made by the management to open the property at Randsburg. The machinery is in shape for a long shut-down. .” — The Engineering and Mining Journal
August 25, 1903: “WITH NONUNION MEN. Effort Will Be Made to Open Mines in California. Bakersfield Cal. Aug 24. A special to the Californian from Randsburg. Randsburg says the negotiations for the settlement of the miners strike which have been on for several months came to naught. The Desert Mine Owners Association in conference with President Nelson of the Miners union refused to pay more than the old scale. $3.50 for sinking shafts and $3.00 for stoping and drifting while the union insists upon $3.50 straight a day for all miners regard regardless of the class of work and $3.00 for shovelers. It is evident that the mine owners intend to force matters and it is learned that 200 nonunion men are to be sent to the Yellow Aster at once. It is thought however, that it will be some time before operations can be commenced as many man repairs will have to be made to put the mine in shape. At present there are said to be a number of cave-ins as a result of the long shutdown. ” – Salt Lake Herald
August 29, 1903: “The Yellow Aster showed up better and better the deeper the shafts and winzes were sunk. The latest ledge struck, at a depth of 1260 feet, is the richest ever found in this camp. Unfortunately this and several of the other properties here are now tied up.” — Mining and Scientific Press
September 01, 1903: “ARMED GUARDS ESCORT MEN TO AND FROM WORK—Randsburg, Aug. 11—The Yellow Aster Mine Started up Sunday morning with a small force. Sheriff Kelly and his deputies, who arrived Saturday, are protecting the employees by armed guards, who accompany the men to and from work. The Yellow Aster Company is caring for its employees in bunkhouses and boarding-houses of its own. Four of the men from Joplin refused to work, they having sworn allegiance to the Miner’s Union. A few of the old men have returned to work.” – San Francisco Call
September 03, 1903: “THREATEN MINERS WITH BLACKLIST — BAKERSFIELD, Sept. 2.— The’ Miners Union at Randsburg has Issued a, circular to the union men working In the-Yellow Aster mine that if they remain there their names will be placed on the unfair list and will be published wherever the jurisdiction of the Western Federation of Miners extends. Four members of the union have returned to work.” – San Francisco Call
September 5, 1903: “The conference at Los Angeles between the Desert Mine Operators’ Association and the president of the Randsburg Miners’ Union came to nothing. The mine operators refused to pay more that the old scale of $3.50 per day for shaft sinking, and $3.00 for stoping and drifting. The Miners’ Union asked for $3.50 per day for all miners, and $3.00 for shovelers. The principal place affected is the Randsburg region, but all other “desert” districts are interested. Most of the mines at Randsburg and Johannesburg have been closed for some time owing to the strike. It is apparent that the new Mine Operators’ Association intends to force an issue with the miners. The Yellow Aster Mining Company, at Randsburg, the largest employer of labor in the region, is idle still. It has now, however, 60 non-union miners on the way to Randsburg from Missouri and will have 200 before long. The result of this move remains to be seen, but some trouble will doubtless grow out of it. If this is to be the policy of the Desert Mine Operators’ Association labor troubles may be expected in several camps in southern California and southwestern Nevada, where this association has jurisdiction. .” – The Engineering and Mining Journal
September 12, 1903: “AT RANDSBURG, KERN COUNTY, the strike condition is quiet, notwithstanding the importation of non-union miners from Missouri. It is now proposed to make the entire camp non-union. As it takes about 300 miners to work the various properties, aside from laborers, teamsters, mill men, surface laborers, etc., the Desert Mine Operators Association has quite a job on its hands to carry out this project. The pay rate is to be $3 per 9-hour day for miners and $2.50 for muckers, the same as before the strike, two months ago. It is stated that the owners of the Yellow Aster declare they will not again employ union miners, but will rather shut down indefinitely. The non-union men are now at the Yellow Aster. So fat the sheriff has had nothing to do, and the town is quiet. .” – The Engineering and Mining Journal
September 15, 1903: “DRY AS THE DESERT IS THIRSTY RANDSBURG –Mayor Closes All Saloons and There’s Not a Drop to Drink. Bakersfield, Sept. 14. – As a result of strike-breakers who arrived a few days ago from Joplin, Mo., to work in the Yellow Aster mine, Sheriff Kelly has closed all the saloons in Randsburg, and now not a drop of liquor can be purachased in the town. With the exception of the trouble mentioned there has not been the slightest breach of the peace in the town. About sixty men are now working in the Yellow Aster mine, but the mill has not been started. About eighty of the strikers are making their headquarters in Randsburg, some working on leases of their own and others in the smaller mines around town which have the union.” – San Francisco Call
September 19, 1903: “YELLOW ASTER MINING COMPANY—The mine at Randsburg, which has been closed some time, has started with non-union miners. Superintendent E. H. Barton says no discrimination will be made between union and non-union miners.” — The Engineering and Mining Journal
September 26, 1903: “YELLOW ASTER—This mine at Randsburg is working with a small force of non-union men. Some of the union miners have gone back to work, but not many. There has been no outbreak, and the miners’ union disclaims any intention of doing any harm to the company’s property. .” – The Engineering and Mining Journal
October 3, 1903: “YELLOW ASTER MINING COMPANY – This Company has succeeded in getting a number of miners at work again and started its mill. Miners have been brought from Missouri to take the places of strikers.” – The Engineering and Mining Journal
October 3, 1903: “THE LAST CARLOAD OF THIRTY-TWO MEN for the Yellow Aster arrived at Randsburg today. They now have about 200 men and have had the 100 stamp mill running since the 23rd. of last week. They will make their second shipment of bullion October 24th. There has been no violence and no damage done to the property.” – Mining and Scientific Press
October 14, 1903: “Dividend No. 51 ($10,000) of the Yellow Aster M. & M. Co., Randsburg, makes a total to date of $543, 789.” — Mining and Scientific Press
October 24, 1903: “A COMMUNICATION HAS BEEN RECEIVED, under date of October 22, from John D. Ackerman, which contains some supplementary statements relative to the conditions at Randsburg. Mr. Ackerman was in communication, on the date named, with Randsburg. His account is as follows: Everything is quiet. The Yellow Aster mine is running full force. Both mills are going night and day. In addition to the regular work of supplying the mills with the necessary ore the company is causing to be done considerable development Work. It has prospected some on the 1U7O foot level and finds that the body of ore discovered by it Just before the strike on the 1st of June last is as good as first reported and very extensive. It contemplates putting down a three compartment shaft at an early date for the purpose of working the level. The Miners’ Union Bas caused reports to go out through the, press that negotiations are ongoing between the members of the local union and the mine owners for a settlement of the strike. The truth is the business men and some of the Union men made a move in that direction and held several meetings and a committee was appointed to wait on the owners of the Yellow Aster, which they did. They were courteously received and were shown through the mine and mills to satisfy them that there was nothing to negotiate. That the property was running, and, so- far as the company was concerned, they had plenty of men and the strike was a dead issue. The committee retired seemingly convinced to that effect. Some of the smaller properties contemplate resuming operation at an early date.” – San Francisco Call
October 17, 1903: “REPORTS STRIKE BROKEN. John D. Ackerman makes the following statement concerning affairs at the Yellow Aster mine at Randsburg: On the 10th inst. every man in the employ of the company received his money and not a single employee left the company. That Is proof that the strike that was declared by the Federation of Miners Union of Randsburg on June 10 against the Yellow After Mining and Milling Company has been broken, and the mine is now running non-Union, but paying union wages and respecting union hours, with 200 men on the pay roll, 130 stamps dropping, crushing 500 tons of ore every twenty-four hours- The union men did everything within their power to hamper the management and are still annoying or rather trying to by sending out false statements as to the number of men employed, that those employed are dissatisfied and contemplate quitting as soon as they are paid, and they caused circulars to be printed and distributed stating that the strike is still on. When the company resumed operation notices were posted to the effect that any of the men that had been employed would be given a chance to go to work, at the same wages as were paid before the strike. Very few availed themselves of the chance. Therefore the management was compelled to look elsewhere for miners. They tent to Joplin. Ma, and got a great many and some from fan Francisco, all non-union men. – San Francisco Call
October 27, 1903: “SATURDAY THE 10TH inst, was the first pay day of the Yellow Aster M. Co. at Randsburg since the strike. There are but few of the former employees and strikers left in town. Superintendent Barton has 130 stamps dropping in their tow mills, crushing 500 tons of ore per day. There are 200 men on the payroll, and more are being added.” — Mining and Scientific Press
November 14, 1903: “THE BUSINESS MEN OF RANDSBURG, Kern County, where a miners’ strike has been going on for some months, have issued a statement to the effect that the Yellow Aster Mining Co. has been running steadily 130-stamps for the past three weeks, with about 200 men at work. The statement also says that men looking for work should disregard sensational articles which are published contrary to these facts. The union men are not in any way interfering with work, but the town is being held back by reports that the mines are not running.” – The Engineering and Mining Journal
December 17, 1903: “(JUSTICE) MANNING OF RANDSBURG has issued a warrant for the arrest of John D. Ackerman,’ attorney and agent of the Yellow Aster Mining Company in San Francisco, on a charge of shipping workmen to the district under false representations as to the conditions there. The warrant was issued under the provisions of a law passed by the last Legislature, by which the offense is made a misdemeanor.” – San Francisco Call
December 17, 1903: “John D. Ackerman when interviewed last night at his residence in Oakland said:” ‘Well,’ I said, ‘we. ¦will not have a union man on the place, and I’ll tell you that in plain English, so there shall be no misunderstanding. If you go to Rand3burg and affiliate with the union you will lose your jobs.’ “They asked me about the fare to Randsburg, and I told them if they made up a crowd of more than ten I would get them a special rate. On December 3 seventeen of them showed up. I went with them, but Berryman signed the ticket and checked the baggage. Each man was told by myself in the presence of two or more witnesses in my office that we had broken the strike at the mine. “The complaint was filed on December 8. I have a certified copy of it, and my attorneys, Frank McGowan and H. W. Hutton, declare that it is not worth the paper It’s printed on. We will, attack it, first because it is alleged the offense of misrepresenting conditions at the mine w*s committed in San Francisco and the Randsburg Justice has no Jurisdiction, and, second, on the complaint itself as worthless, and, third, on the ground that the men were in no way deceived. Berryman claims I did not tell him about the strike. “Sheriff Kelly, of Kern County, holds the warrant for my arrest, and I have talked with him over the ‘phone. He told me he was about of the same opinion as myself about the complaint. I told him if he came to San Francisco after me he might as well lay in a year’s provisions, because I would fight the thing through the last court. “We are keeping a heavy guard around our property, but the strike is broken, and since October 1 we have been running our 130 stamps every day. We got 100 Missourians among the new men, and the greatest trouble we have is to keep them from going out and fighting with the remnants of the men who went on strike.” “We had a strike of miners at the Yellow Aster mine that we broke in September. On October 1 we resumed operations with 200 non-union miners, and have been going ever since. John F. Berryman, the man who swore to the complaint, is one of a bunch of seventeen men who were sent from San Francisco on December 2 to work at the mine. Berryman and all of the rest of them were told by me that there had been a strike on, that we had broken the strike and that they could go to work provided they were non-union men. The first time he called at my office Berryman was accompanied by three other men. They replied then: ” Oh, we’re not union men.’ – San Francisco Call
January 09, 1904: “In a signed statement Eugene H.Barton superintendent of the Yellow Aster mine at Randsburg says that the following hours and wages are in force at that property:Miners nine hours $3.00, muckers 9 hours $2.50,car men 9 hours, $3.00, timber men 9hours $3.50, amalgamators 12 hours $4.00, stationary engineers 12 hours $4.00, hoisting engineers 8 hours $3.50, and the pump men 12 hours $3.50 Comparing the above with the scale in force here in Searchlight it will be seen that laboring conditions are much better here than in Randsburg. The Searchlight” – Mohave County Miner
January 1904: “Mines reported to be part of the Yellow Aster: Alameda, Big Horse, Burcham # 1, Burcham #2, California, Columbia, Defender, Desert View, El Rico, Fannie C., Golden Queen, J. B., Johannesburg, Mariposa, Mooers, Nancy Hanks, North End, Old Dollar, Olympus, Prescott, Rand, Reservoir, Wedge, Scott, Security, Singleton, Tennessee, Trilby Wedge” — AUBREY, LEWIS E., REGISTER OF MINES AND MINERALS , KERN COUNTY, CALIFORNIA, STATE MINING BUREAU
January 9, 1904: “SHERIFF KELLY went to San Francisco this week to serve the warrant of arrest on John D. Ackerman, the Yellow Aster attorney and agent, says the Californian. The lawyer had been in hiding for some time endeavoring to obtain a copy of the complaint from the Randsburg justice, who has refused to send it. Attorney Plats representing the Western Federation of Miners is still in San Francisco, where he has been ever since he went there with Under-Sheriff Baker, and has been waiting for the attorney to come in and surrender himself.
One day this week Sheriff Kelly received a letter from Ackerman stating that he was ready to surrender himself if an officer were sent to the city. The Sheriff went after him, and the matter of jurisdiction is probably again in habeas corpus proceeding in the Superior Court in San Francisco. With Mr. Plata representing the state as special counsel.” — Randsburg Miner
March 26, 1904: “DISTRICT ATTORNEY LAIRD has filed an accusation in the Superior Court in which John D. Ackerman is accused of inducing, or influencing and persuading a person to change from one place to another in the state by means of false representation of the existence of a strike, which is a misdemeanor and committed as follows: Ackerman on or about December 3, 1903 did willfully and knowingly by means of false spoken representations concerning the existence of a strike pending against the Yellow Aster Mining and Milling Company of Randsburg persuaded John T. Berryman to leave San Francisco and go to Randsburg, according to the allegations in the information Berryman misled by the representations went to Randsburg and found a strike in existence.–Californian.” – Randsburg Miner
APRIL 16, 1904: “ACKERMAN ENTERS PLEA—John D. Ackerman, the San Francisco lawyer is charged with having violated the law enacted by the last legislature forbidding the importation of strikebreakers into any place by means of false representations, was arraigned before Judge Bennet in the Superior Court the first of the week and plead not guilty to the information filed against him.
Judge Bennett set the case for trial before a jury on June 7th. Ackerman meanwhile is out on bonds awaiting the date of his trial.
It will be remembered that Ackerman was the means of inducing a number of non-union men to Randsburg to help break the strike on the Yellow Aster several months since. Some of these men declared he had misrepresented the situation to them and led them to believe that the strike was ended. His arrest on complaint of one of these men backed by the Western Federation of Miners followed.
This is the second cast to arise of this kind since the law was enacted, the first having been tried in the police court in San Francisco a short time since and resulted in an acquittal on account of the nature of the testimony introduced.—Californian. .” – Randsburg Miner
June 11, 1904: “ATTORNEY USES STRONG WORDS BAKERSFIEL.D, June 10. — The Ackerman case was thrown out of court this afternoon on the ground that the information was defective. The three witnesses for the prosecution, who failed to appear, and whom the defendant looked up and had arrested in San Francisco, were in court to-day and pleaded that they had been without funds to come here. Judge Barnett accepted the excuse and allowed them to go. When the case was dismissed Attorney Matthew S. Platz made a sensational statement to the effect that if his clients “could not get Justice in the courts they would have to take the law into their own hands.” Attorney McGowan replied to the statement, denouncing the attorney’s remarks in strong terms. Platz represented the Western Federation of Miners, of which organization he is an honorary member. Under the law enacted by the last Legislature making it illegal to import strike-breakers into any district by false representations. Ackerman sent men from San Francisco to Randsburg during the strike at the Yellow Aster.”—San Francisco Call
August 27, 1904: “THE WIFE and three children of W. D. Peters, chief engineer at the Yellow Aster, came in last evening. .” – Randsburg Miner
October 15, 1904: “Mr. John Singleton, president of the Yellow Aster Co. came in Friday evening. Mr. Singleton has not of recent years spent much of his time in Randsburg, but now he expects to make a longer stay, as he seems to be in excellent health, and is the same jolly companionable gentleman he ever was among his friends. He was accompanied by Mr. Charles C. Greene, late of Middleborough-on-Tees, England, a mining engineer, who came here in employ of the Yellow Aster. Mr. Greene come well recommended and will doubtless prove a valuable man for the company. .” – Randsburg Miner
MINERAL SURVEY NO.4415
, Independence Land District, claim surveyed January and February 1905, known as Fannie C. Quartz Mining Claim, ownde by Yellow Aster Mining and Milling Company, imrovements consisting of 1. Discovery Shaft value $70, 2. Cut and Tunnel $315, 3. Cut and Tunnel $370 and 4. Shaft $120, located at T.29 S., R40 E., MDM, southwest ¼ of sec. 35. and T.29 S., R40 E., MDM northwest ¼ sec. 2.
MINERAL SURVEY NO.4421, Independence Land District, located April 26, 1896 claim surveyed January and February 1905, known as J. G. Quartz Mine, owned by Yellow Aster Mining and Milling Company, imrovements consisting of 1. Discovery Tunnel value $336, 2. Cut and Tunnel $150, , located at T.29 S., R40 E., MDM, southwest ¼ of sec. 35,
February 18, 1905: “A NEW CONE HAS BEEN INSTALLED in the large rock crusher at the 100 stamp mill of the Yellow Aster mine. This one is larger than the old one and crushes finer. They are now putting through five hundred tons of ore each day and averaging better than that taking the two mills together. Nearly all the ore now going through comes from the glory boles and is let down to the Rand level. The whole mountain side is ore and the mining is more like a quarry than anything else. There is an unlimited quantity in sight and 1000 stamps would not crush it out in any reasonable length of time. The mine is in better shape than ever before and the rest of mining and milling is lower than at any former time. A new crusher is soon to be installed at the old mill the30 stamp mill. There is a tremendous accumulation of tailings the company never having done anything with them but pile them up. Now they have decided to work them and a cyanide plant has been ordered and will soon be in operation. This however will work only about one fifth of the daily accumulation. Randsburg Miner” – Mohave County Miner
June 1, 1905: “THE FOLLOWING FROM the Randsburg Miner indicates that although little is being heard of the southern camp, it is at the stage of continuous production and beyond mere boom:
The Yellow Aster Company have their motor engine at work as far as the mouth of the tunnel and in a little while the mules will be turned out to graze, or turned to other labor. Cars will be procured in a little while holding three times as much as those now in use. Two more power drills have been ordered as the ones in use are found to work all right and with economy of labor. One hundred and fifty –one men are now on the pay roll, or were a few days ago; the list varies a little, some quitting and some beginning every few days. Under the old regime the pay roll carried 250 names and no more work was accomplished than now. About 550 tons of ore going through the mill daily.” — Inyo Register
June 8, 1905: “THE YELLOW ASTER COMPANY is doing business at Asher and Co.’s., old stand at the “Rand Mercantile Co.”, but for the present, Mr. Ancker, Mr. Asher, and the old force of clerks are attending to matters just as usual. It will take a little while to get matters straightened out as it is a large business. .” – Randsburg Miner
November 27, 1905: “YELLOW ASTER MINES. It is stated that the Yellow Aster mills near Randsburg, Cal., are crushing an average of nearly 600 tons per day, their total tonnage last month being 16,775 tons, with two day’s stoppage for repairs, which is unusual. They are developing for water with a view to enlarging their capacity. The development work in that direction is at the old wells east of Johannesburg. They have one well down 1535 feet and have two shifts of men, working night and day, making about sixteen feet in twenty-four hours. They feel sure of getting a good supply, as none of the old wells put down in that locality either by themselves or the water company exceeded 400 feet. If they should fail to get sufficient water in that direction they will turn their development work toward the valley, where they are sure of it, and the increased mill capacity will only be delayed and not abandoned.” – Los Angeles Herald’
March 22, 1906: “EVERYTHING IS GOING ALONG smoothly at the Yellow Aster mines and mills. They are steadily crushing about 500 tons of ore and working about 175 men, sometimes more. The ore is of course taken from the side of the mountain and varies a little from time to time in richness. At the present time it is running very good and big returns are being made. In drilling for water near the wells in Goler wash much difficulty has been encountered in going through the big round boulders which compose all the underground after getting a little below the surface and the work is slow in consequence. The have one well down over 400 feet and struck the water some thirty feet before reaching that point. They expect to continue at least another hundred feet. .” — Randsburg Miner
March 24, 1906: “Everything is going along smoothly at the Yellow Aster mines and Mills. They are steadily crushing about 500 tons of ore and working about 175 men, some times more. The ore is of course all taken from the side of the mountain and varies a little from time to time in richness. At the present time it is running very good and big returns are being made In drilling for water near the wells in the Goler wash much difficulty has been encountered in going through the big round boulders which compose all the underground after getting a little below the surface and the work is slow in consequence. They have one well down over 400 feet and struck the water some thirty feet before reaching that point. They expect to continue at least another hundred feet. The new deep well east of Johannesburg has never been thoroughly tested as it is difficult job to pump that depth, but the company has almost completed arrangements to test its capacity and it will be done inside of two weeks. – The Daily Californian
Mineral Survey No. 4001, Independence Land District, claim surveyed September and October 1904, known as Golden Queen Consolidated Quartz Claim, embracing the Golden Queen Quartz (located 12 October 1895), Alameda Quartz Mine (located 12 October, 1895), Scott Quartz Claim (located 29 October, 1895, and North End Quartz Claim (located 18 September, 1899, owned by Yellow Aster Mining and Milling Company, improvements consisting of on Scott Quartz Claim, 1. Discovery Cut and Tunnel valued at $800, 2. Shaft $120, 3. Tunnel and Cut $100, 4. Shaft $120, 5. Shaft $50, 6. Shaft $2000, on North End Claim 1. Discovery Cut $150, 2. Shaft $100, 3. Shaft $150, 4. Shaft $150, on Golden Queen Quartz Claim, 1. Discovery Shaft $30, 2. Cut, Tunnel and Shafts $400, 3. Surface Cut $150, 4. Cut and Tunnel $200, 5. Incline Shaft $200, on Alameda Quartz Mine 1. Discovery Incline Shaft $200, 2. Cut and Tunnel $200, 3. Shaft $100, 4. Surface Cuts $125, 5. Incline Shaft $200, 6. Shaft $120, 7. Shaft and Drift $600, 8. Shaft $60, 9. Shaft $60, 10. Open cuts $120., located at T.29 S., R40 E., MDM, southeast ¼ of sec. 24, southwest corner of sec. 35, and T. 30 S., R 40 E. MDM northwest corner of Section 2.
April 26, 1906: “MINER CRUSHED TO DEATH. Former Resident of Los Angeles Almost Instantly Killed at Randsburg, California. By Associated Press. RANDSBURG. Cal., April 25.— Grant Smith, a single man forty years of age, was crushed in the Yellow Aster mines yesterday morning and died from the effects about three hours after. He was timbering a drift when the ground slipped and caught him. He suffered intensely until relieved by death. His father, two sisters and brothers live in Los Angeles. He had only been working here since the holidays. His remains will be taken to Los Angeles for burial this evening.” – Los Angeles Herald
November 11, 1906: “Randsburg mines are operating as follows: “The Yellow Aster’s stamps are dropping night and day and are producing dividends of $15,000 a month. The mine employs 175 men. On the Yellow Aster dump are 7,000,000 tons of tailings that await cyanide treatment.” – San Francisco Call
January 19, 1907: “ VALUABLE BRICKS OF GOLD ARE STOLEN. By Associated Press. BARSTOW, Jan. 18.— At 12:30 this morning, on the arrival of the train from Randsburg, Wells-Fargo Agent Browne took charge of a strong box containing two gold bricks valued at $8000 from the Yellow Aster mine on its way to the mint. He carried the box inside the office and returned to finish transferring. He was gone only three minutes, but on his return he found someone had broken the glass out of the side door and opened it, taking the box and contents. The alarm was given but no clue has been discovered as to the party committing the theft. The supposition is that some one knew of the shipment and followed it from Randsburg.” – Los Angeles Herald
May 06, 1907: “C. A. BURCHAM of Yellow Aster fame is developing his gold claims In the Calico mountains, where he Is opening up a body of low grade ore said to beliable to equal the famous Randsburg mine when fully developed. He has said little about his work, but Jt is understood that he has some 3000 feet of workings.” –Los Angeles Herald
February 28, 1908: KELLER, H. A. – REPORT ON CONDITIONS OF MINING AND MILLING AT THE YELLOW ASTER MINE,
Yellow Aster Mining & Milling Co.,
312 Coulter Building
Los Angeles, Cal.
During February, 1908, I have at your request visited the Yellow Aster Mining & Milling Company’s mines and Mills, with the view of advising on largely increased operations.
The object of this report is therefore, to describe in detail the present conditions of mining at your property, and to show from them how by enlarged operations, the costs per ton of ore will be reduced. To accomplish this, an initial outlay of considerable capital will be required. Estimates as to cost will be found below.
Your mines and mills are all situated in Kern, County, California, near the town of Randsburg, while Company’s Main Office is in the Coulter Building, Los Angeles.
Randsburg is a thriving little town of about 1500 inhabitants. It is almost entirely maintained by the Yellow Aster Mine as there is now but little else going on in this district, which is part of the Mojave Desert. The Company operates at Randsburg a general store, hotel and telephone line, with connection to the entire mine and mill stations, as well as to Johannesburg, the nearest Railway Station.
It maintains a hospital, social hall, mess house for the staff and owns 22 cottages, all in good condition. At Randsburg there is a good public school, a regular Wells Fargo Office and Western Union Telegraph Office.
The small town of Johannesburg is 1 ½ mines to the Northeast of Randsburg. It is the terminus of a railroad feeder 26 miles long, which joins the Main line of the A. T. & S. F. Railroad at Kramer. From Johannesburg, a daily stage connects with the Mining District’s 100 miles to the North as far as Skidoo.
The distance by rail to Los Angeles is about 210 miles over the Santa Fe System. The Southern Pacific has surveyed a branch line from Mojave to Keeler, a distance of about 200 miles on a 1 per cent grade. This branch is to run up the valley at a distance of about 4 miles from the Yellow Aster Mine and only 1 ½ miles from the new mill site. With increased operations along the Owens’ River Aqueduct and also at the Yellow Aster Mine, there should be no doubt as to its construction.
The climate is good throughout this section of the Mojave Desert and the altitudes here are in the neighborhood of 5000 ft.
MINING CLAIMS AND TITLES: Map #1 is a plan of all your Mining Claims, which form one contiguous plot.
- Yellow Aster
- Burcham #2
- Big Horse
12. Desert View 13. Johannesburg 14. Prescott
- El Rico
16. Old Dollar
18. Tennessee 19. Nancy Hanks 20. California containing in all 41.09 acres 22. Columbia 23. Reservoir Wedge 24. Rand Placer 25. Trilby Placer 26. Nevada Placer 27. Fanny C. 28. Scott 29. North End 30. Golden Queen 31. Alameda 32. Lucky Boy 33. Little Bonanza 34. Single Standard 35. Defender 36. Mountain Chief 37. Tom Cat 38. Monte Cristo 39. J. G. 40. Hard Cash 41. Montezuma 42. Randsburg No. 1 43. Randsburg No. 2 All title to this ground is good, being held under U. S. Patents, with exception of the two last claims, which are more recent locations, held under possessory title from the U. S. Government, all boundary monuments are in proper position and in good condition. It might be advisable to fill in some scattering ground, marked on Map #1, as #1 Annex, #2 Josephine #3 & #4 besides, additional surface ground should be taken up in connection with the proposed new rope tramway, mill, tailings and water supply in about the way outlined and accompanying Map marked # 2. The Yellow Aster Mine was discovered in April 1895 by Messrs. Singleton, Burcham and Mooers. At first, the rich outcrops were worked by dry-washing, owing to scarcity of surface water throughout this desert section. The mine has been worked continually ever since, till at the present time, it is equipped with two modern, complete stamp mills of 30 and 100 stamps respectively. During these twelve years the Mine has paid for all improvements, besides having paid $988,789 in dividends, leaving the property of debt. In 1897, the Yellow Aster Mining & Milling Co. was incorporated for $1,000,000 consisting of 100,000 shares of $10.00 each. This stock is still being closely held by the three original interests. The Company’s Officers are: John Singleton, President, C. A. Burcham, Vice President, C. H. Mooers, 2nd Vice President, Dr. R. L. Burcham, Secretary, National Bank of California, Treasurer, and J. S. Chapman, Attorney, all of Los Angeles. GEOLOGY For miles around, the country formation consists of a schistose hornblende-rock with variable shallow dips to the Northeast. Numerous strong quartz-prophery dikes running in various directions have caused the fissuring and shattering of this country rock. This has paved the way for ore occurrences throughout the Randsburg District. In many places too, extensive segregations of white, barren quartz are encountered, which on the other hand seem to have no connection with the ore depositions of this district. To the North of Randsburg, the country is known as the Stringer District. During the boom times of 1896 and 1897 a number of these narrow seams were worked, yielding many tons of rich gold ore. By far the largest and at the same time the most economically situated of these ore occurrences is the Yellow Aster ore-shoot or ore-zone. This huge mass of mineralized or impregnated material stretches along Yellow Aster Gulch, striking somewhat West of North or East of South, with shallow dips to the Northeast. These dips vary from approximately 60 degrees along the foot wall to 30 degrees and less along the hanging. This outcrop is traceable on the surface for 1000 ft. in length and some 600 to 800 ft. in width. The formation of this immense ore body is evidently due to the filling in of the fissures caused by the dykes, with granite or rather syenitic magmas, which contain innumerable small but rich, seams and also containing a system of more or less distinct veins, parallel, which are locally termed “Verticals” –From these “Verticals” large quantities of good ores have been extracted. By a subsequent movement, more particularly above the Rand Level as far as we know, these syenitic masses forming the Lode have further crushed and shattered, thereby impregnating the lode from these stringers and verticals, with gold values through low, sufficiently to be of economic value. The still firm portions of this mass, i.e. those that were not crushed by this subsequent movement, though remaining barren in themselves, exhibit plainly many rich soft stringers. Such masses are locally known as blocky ground or horses. ORE VLAUES About three ago, a large quarry or glory Hole which will be found indicated on several of the accompanying maps, was started in the Yellow Aster Gulch and is located on and above the Trilby Level in the Hanging Wall country. After having now mined some 400,000 tons of material in this manner, the mine records show that 60 per cent of this material has been milled and carried a gross gold value of barely $3.00 per ton. The remaining 40 per cent were rejected as waste material with gold values of about 60 cents per ton. Owing to this network of irregular rich seems throughout this enormous mass of impregnated material, now amount of sampling in the 15 miles of drifts existing along this lode will equal in accuracy the actual mill returns given above. I have, however, checked these values by two large samples, taken as nearly possible across the ore body on the Rand Level, along the Main Tunnel for some 550 ft. and along the Jupiter Crescent for some 200 ft. with the following results: Besides these, a large number of small samples taken at random throughout the workings, point to similar values. It must be borne in mind however, that large block of virgin territory in the foot-wall country cannot at this time be determined as above, by records not by samples. This ground has been included in my ore estimates given below, on a similar valuation, which though less certain, seems to be a fair assumption. Below the Rand Level, there are now a number of large good stopes. These can be seen from the various Mine Maps, some are located near the foot-wall and more of them closer to the hanging. However, the syenite or granite between these over-shoots is more blocky and lower in grade that is the case above the level. A large sample of 700 lbs. taken along the Subway Crosscut on the 1st level, e. e. 130 ft. vertically below the Rand Level, gave only 88cents per ton after rejecting 60% for waste, so that comparatively little of the impregnated or shattered syenite can be counted upon, as being exposed at this time between the richer ore shoots immediately below the Rand Level. Here, too, the distance between the hanging and foot walls has considerably diminished. However, considerable amounts of good ore continue to come from these lower stopes. It is therefore not unlikely, that the promising conditions encountered in the upper levels, may eventually be restored below the second level by further development. In fact, even now, the developments in the hanging wall country through the Hercules Shaft on the 3rd level seem to point to this. It will be understood, that under these conditions, just described, it will be difficult to venture estimates much below the Rand Level, and I shall confine my subsequent figures mostly above the level, bearing in mind however, that another large ore supply man eventually be developed below the present lowest level on the main shaft, which is 220 vertically below the Rand Level. It may be interesting to state here, that the ores sent to the mill have mostly assayed below the values recovered in shape of gold bricks. DIAMOND DRILLING: During the past year, considerable lateral explorations have been done on the 2nd and 1st levels by means of a diamond drill. This drill makes a ½” core, requires 70 cube ft. compressed air per minute, and requires about 5 H. P. to run. It has averaged 10 ft. per shift at a cost of $15.0 per ft. 42 horizontal or slightly inclined drill holes were bored both north and south from the drifts on the 2nd and 1st levels. The holes are 50 ft. apart and were driven across the ore body. They were extended until blocks of ground were encountered but not sufficiently far to locate either wall nor was any drilling done in depth. Very complete records were kept of this work. The 17 drill holes along the 2nd level gave but indifferent results, while good values for a considerable distance were obtained by the work on the first level… After finishing up on this level, the Drill could be moved into the bottom of the X Ray and Georgia inclines, which are receptively 110 and 200 ft. vertically lower than the present 3rd level, and both of which show considerable sulphides, locally termed blue dikes. CHARACTER OF THE ORE: Although some sulphides have appeared in proximity to the dikes near the surface, and apparently increase at a depth of 300 ft. below the Rand Level, the great bulk of ore has been remarkably free milling. This is shown by the low tailings for last year, the average of which is below 35 cents on an average ore value of $3.75. The metallurgical proposition has therefore been a very simple one, and will remain so for a long time to come. Concentration tables have just been installed for experiment, but concentrating and cyaniding are questions of the distant future only. Meanwhile, we have to deal with a simple question of plate amalgamation. EQUIPMENT: The equipment of the property is complete for handling about 500 tons of ore daily, and is in excellent condition. What might be added is one boiler at the Large Mill. The equipment consisted of: 1- 130 H. P. gasoline hoist at the main shaft, of which only 50 H. P. are required. This shaft runs approximately along the footwall at a 61 degree angle. From the Rand Level down to the 2nd level it has a depth of 220 ft. vertically. Its dimension are 5 ft. x 10 ft. and has two compartments. 1- 27 H. P. gasoline hoist at the Hercules shaft. This shaft runs along the hanging wall at a mean inclination of 40 degrees and reaches the third level, which 318 ft. vertically below the Rand. Its size is 4 ft. x 6ft. Considerable ore is being hoisted from both these shafts. 1- 15 H. P. gasoline motor which carries all ores extracted above the Rand Level to the mills over a central track in the motor drift, and is connected by raises or chutes with the upper workings and glory hole. Not considering some smaller ore cars, this motor operates two 4 car trams of 12 tons each. This motor is shortly to be replaced by a steam locomotive capable of carrying 60 tons over a 1% grade. 1 – 30 stamp plate amalgamation Mill, called No. 1 Mill, complete with a 3 Standard Concentrating tables. This is operated by a 75 H. P. Engine with 2- 80 H. P. tubular Boilers fired by crude oil. Besides this, there is an Ingersoll-Sargent compressor of a capacity of 260 cubic ft. per minute. A jaw rock-breaker requiring 7. H.P. has a separate engine. 1- 100 stamp mill, called No. 2, similar to the above. The stamps in both mills are not very diriment, they average about 1000 lbs. in weight make 104 drops per minute and have a 6 ½’ drop. They are operated by 2- 125 H. P. Corliss Engines, with 2 – 15- H. P. Sterling boilers, with the intention of adding a third, also fired by crude oil. Besides this there is a duplex Ingersoll-Sargent compressor of a capacity of 560 cub. Ft. per minute and a 500 light electric plant. A Comet crusher, requiring 30 H. P. has a separate engine. The 2 compressors are capable of driving the Diamond Drill 2 – 2- ¾ machine drills 10 1- ½ machine drills, besides 4 Shaw “pluggers”. An Assay Office and sample room complete for all the work required in connection with the Mine and Mills. Well fitted carpenter and machine shops. There are 3 pumping stations. At Goler wells, the first one of them, the company has 3 well of which 2 are being pumped by lift-pumps into a shaft of a depth of 425 ft. The third overflows into this haft. From here, about 200,000 gallons of water are raised per day, to the surface in skips which are thence pumped by a Dean line pump to a pumping station near the Mills at a distance of 7 miles from Goler, and against a head of 1000 ft. From the repumping station the entire water supply of 500,000 gals is delivered above the mills by a large Dow pump working against the additional head of 325 ft. From the proposed mill site this head will be reduced from 1324 ft. to 375 ft. The third pumping station is at the old mountain wells, from where about 30,000 gals, of pure, hot rockwater is furnished directly to the mills for boiler and domestic purposes. A new lift pump is being installed, which is expected to more than double this quantity of water. At the mountain wells the wall is 17000 ft. deep in rock with a permanent head at 900 ft. down. The new 3 ½ lift pup will pump with a 10 ft. stroke from a depth of 1200 ft. The gasoline power requires about 60 gallons per day with cost 15 cents per gal. of distillate, delivered. Crude oil costs 50 cents per barrel 0f 42 gallons at Bakersfield, or $15.00 per barrel laid down. The average monthly consumption for 1907 has been 125,000 gallons. The cost per H. P. counting labor, fuel, etc. seems to have been $8.60 per month. With a large number of horse-powers at a centralized power station, these figures could be materially reduced, provided of course that oil can be obtained at similar figures. The power for the proposed new plant will be proportionately much less (1) the hoisting of all ore will be discontinued, (2) The Milling operations will be more concentrated, and (3) the water supply will be pumped against less than one third its present head. The question as to the source of power for the new plant is naturally a very important one, requiring additional close study. It is not only a question of economy, but one of reliability unless the company has a steady supply of crude oil. Electric power is undoubtedly to be preferred if it can be secured at reasonable rates. At the present time, the nearest supply of electric power is from the Kern River Co., at a distance of 40 miles, which can probably be had for $5.00 of less, per month H. P. and the cost of installing $1000 per mile. The Owens’ Lake aqueduct to be constructed by the City of Los Angeles could be tapped at half the distance, but this is too uncertain at this time to be counted on. WATER SUPPLY As there is no surface water in this region, the entire water supply has to be pumped. The amount of water that is being used at present is approximately 1000 gallons to the ton of ore. Since Goler Wells supplies the repump with 200,000 gallons of new water per day, which would indicate a loss of 40 per cent in the remanding of water, being lost in seepage and absorption by the tailings. The geological conditions at the Goler Wells are in general way these: There is ample water and pumping capacity for all present needs. To secure the additional amounts required in the proposed enlarged operations, it does not seem altogether safe to sink other wells in too close proximity to the present ones. However, there are two promising locations at no great distance. Here the indications point to sufficient water at a level which might do away with pumping to proposed new mill. This ground will have to be proven up.
The other but proven source would be from the dry lake near Garlock, which is at a distance of 3 miles West of Goler, at an elevation of 220 ft. lower. Here good wells have existed for a number of years, the water being encountered at a level similar to that at Goler. There is little doubt that sufficient water to handle the increased tonnage can readily be secured at these two places. Be referring again to Map #2, it will be seen that the present mill are located at a distance of 7 miles from the water supply, and at an elevation of almost 1400 above Goler. The distance of the new mill will not exceed 4 miles and its elevation not over 375 ft.
Of the ores mines and milled at present, about 50% have come from the glory hole or quarry. The remainder is being supplied from the richer ore-shoots inside of the mine, which require square setting as well as hoisting. This costly “sweetening up” is necessary to insure a good profit on the present capacity of 500 tons per day. The objects of the proposed New Plant are therefore to reduce the present costs of production which are shown below, first by improved working conditions, and secondly by increased capacity, to a figure at which the ores can all be mined by Glory Hole methods. Especial care must be had to get rid of the waste at a small cost, and to establish the work in a manner to keep the ground under control, both as to the grade of ore sent to the Mill, as well as to the safety of the workmen. To fully establish this system will require some time. Maps Nos. 3 & 4 show the proposed large quarry both in plan and section. Labor The number of men employed has been from 190 to 200, with monthly payrolls close to $20,000, which means an average monthly wage of $100.00 For some years past, Randsburg has been a non-union camp, with the following scale of wages for 9 hours work: Machine men $3.50, Miners- $3.00, and Muckers – $2.50. There is no scarcity of labor in the camp at this time.
In 1905 a special effort was made to mine as much ore as possible from the Yellow Aster Glory Hole, besides, this Glory Hole was comparatively new then, and little shoveling was required in the chutes or winzes leading to the Motor Drift on the Rand Level, which seem to have been the principal reasons for the low mining costs of that year.
The 3 section lines A.C., E.F., and G.H., show the perpendicular distance between these two rhombic bases to be 270 ft., so that at 13 cubic feet to the ton of ore, the gross tonnage of this block figures. 15,000,000 tons From this deduct for
With direct costs of from $2.00 to $2.50 per ton such as shown above under the present conditions of working at the mine, this straight Glory Hole ore would leave but little profit. By continuing the policy of raising the grade of the Glory Hole ores by mining in advance the better ores from the lower level, and at considerable extra expense, means to shorten materially the life of your mine. To accomplish this will require (1) – Getting the Mine in shape for much larger capacity, which will require some time to accomplish; (2) – Securing a sufficiently large water-supply; (3) – Centralizing all power and extending the railroad to Randsburg, and (4) Building a large stamp mill centrally located.
With a complete plant, such as outlined, I estimate the costs of operation to be per ton of ore:
June 29, 1908: “500-Stamp Mill – C. A. Burcham left for Los Angeles a few days ago. While there he will probably attend to the details of the 500-stamp mill which his Yellow Aster Mining Company proposes to erect near Randsburg. To facilitate transportation of the new machinery to this mill site the Santa Fe railroad has decided to extend its line from Johannesburg to the proposed mill site, a distance of about one and a half miles.” – The Herald
August 18, 1908: “DYNAMITE PLOT AND THEFTS OF GOLD ALLEGED YELLOW ASTER MINE FOREMAN IN THE TOILS ASSISTANT CAUGHT AND ON BAIL IN RANDSBURG– Conspiracy to Blow Up Famous Property After “High Grading” is charged to Nelson and Others. George Nelson, foreman of the Yellow Aster mine, was arrested last night at 12 o’clock by Under Sheriff Edward Dlshman and placed in the County Jail on a charge of having been implicated with Fred Yockey in the plot to blow up that famous mine and water pipeline with dynamite. Added to the sensation which the arrest of Nelson will cause is the allegation that Nelson, Yockey and a number of other men not yet arrested, who were employed as miners In the Yellow Aster, were engaged in “high grading” the mine and finding out that the mine officials had learned of the thefts of rich ore which were going on had formed the dynamite conspiracy for the purpose of destroying all evidence that the mine had been stripped of thousands of dollars’ worth of valuable ore. Nelson was arrested on evidence obtained by operatives of the Hurst detective agency, which has had the case in hand for several weeks, but it was not until within the past few days that his complicity with the affair was suspected. Alleged Plunder Great According to the statements made by the officers last night. Nelson, Yockey and eight miners employed In the Yellow/Aster have been for months taking out ore which runs into the thousands of dollars per ton, and after milling the same in a small contrivance made by them for the purpose, have been shipping the gold to the mint in San Francisco and the assay office in Denver. From the inception of the dynamite plot the officers of the mining company are said to have been aware of the alleged thefts and to have taken steps to run down and arrest every man connected with the scheme. Evidence was first obtained showing that the men had been high grading. It was the discovery of this evidence it is said which prompted the miners to attempt to blow up a portion of the mine with dynamite. Before the dynamite plot could be carried out evidence of this was also obtained and the arrest of the men said to be guilty of the conspiracy was ordered at once. Yockey First Taken. Fred Yockey, who was employed as an assistant to Nelson, was the first man arrested. The news of his arrest becoming known, the other men, it is said, at once left town suddenly. At that time Nelson, whose position with the mine was a responsible one, was suspected of complicity in the matter and he was to a great measure taken into the confidence of the mine owners and in this way is said to have received and communicated to his, partners information which enabled them to escape arrest. A few days ago the detectives found evidence which they claim implicates ‘Nelson in the “high grading” and dynamite conspiracies, and his arrest was ordered. He left Randsburg, however, before he could be arrested, and came to Los Angeles. Is Finally Located- the detective employed by the mine searched for him three days before he was located. He was then pointed out to Under Sheriff Dlshman and the warrant which had been sworn out for his arrest served. Nelson refused to make any other than a general statement last night. He denied emphatically that he was concerned in the so-called dynamite plot or that he had been guilty directly or indirectly of high grading. He further added that the arrest of himself and Yockey was a conspiracy. – Los Angeles Herald
August 18, 1908: “SAYS SHE SWORE TO MANY LIES–Sent Labor Leader Fred Yockey Behind the Bars of a Southern Prison -Charged With Conspiring to Blow Up the Yellow Astor Gold Mine LOS ANGELES, Aug. 17. — The arrest by private detectives in this city-.yesterday of Fred Yockey, vice president of union No. 44 of the western federation of miners at Randsburg, Cal., on the charge of conspiring to blow up the Yellow Aster gold mine with dynamite has developed a complicated situation. Yockey was arrested, it is said, upon complaint of Mrs. Alice G. Clark of 1324 East Forty-eighth street by a detective working for the Hurst detective agency, ;• which was retained by , the Yellow Aster mining company 1 to secure certain evidence. According to published stories, Mrs. Clark now charges that all of the accusations against Yockey are false and says that she was compelled to swear to” them by Joe Coplan, another detective , of the Hurst company, who forced her to sign the statements at the point of a pistol. The whole plot, she avers, was an effort to break up the miners’ union at Randsburg. Yockey is to be taken to Randsburg today, where the miners are said to be greatly incensed over his arrest. “This whole “plot would be ridiculous If.it were not so Infamous,” declared Yockey. “I can clear myself in an hour at a preliminary examination and have absolutely no fear of the outcome. “The evidence trumped up against me is just like the evidence that was made to order for the prosecution of Moyer and Haywood and Pettibone. It is a parallel case exactly. There wasn’t anything j doing up in the Randsburg country; and some detectives simply worked out a plan to make business good. I do not take much stock in the story that the company thought it was being robbed of rich ore — there is nothing to that that I know. There had been a strike against the Yellow Aster since, 1903 and of course it is not friendly with the union. “It is true that I was vice president of the union at Randsburg, but I resigned that office a short time ago and left the mines, intending to go to the oil- fields.” Mrs. C. H. Clark met Yockey today at the office of his attorney. She told again, there, her story of the alleged plot to send Yockey to prison, as Yockey had told it before her arrival. “I have remained silent as long as I am going to be,” Mrs. Clark said. “I was forced to sign the false reports to the detective agency and, the mining company, but I will not see an innocent man railroaded.” — San Francisco Call
August 18, 1908: “SENSATION IN UNION CIRCLES–Prominent Member of Western Federation of Miners Accused of Conspiracy – Los Angeles Cal Aug 17 — The arrest by private detectives In this city of Fred Yockey vice president of Union No 44 of the Western Federation of Miners at Randsburg Cal on the charge of conspiring blow up the Yellow Astor gold with dynamite has developed a complicated situation Yockey was arrest arrested it is said upon complaint of Mrs. Alice G Clark a detective working retained Yellow Astor Mining company to secure certain evidence. According to published stories Mrs. Clark now charges that all of the accusations against Yockey are false and says she he was compelled to swear to by another detective who forced her (to) sign the statements at the point of a pistol the whole plot she an effort to break up the union at Randsburg. Says the evidence trumped up against me is just like the evidence that was made to order for the prosecution of Moyer and Haywood and Pettibone said Yockey. It Is a parallel case exactly There was not anything doing up In the Randsburg country and some detectives simply worked out a plan to make business good I do not take much stock in the story that the company thought it was being robbed of rich ore, nothing to that that I know of, there had been a strike against the Yellow Astor since 1903 and of course it (was) not friendly with the union. It is true that I was vice president of the union at Randsburg but I resigned that office a short time ago and left the mines. – The Salt Lake Herald
August 19, 1908: “DYNAMINE PLOT AND THEFTS OF GOLD ALLEGED—YELLOW ASTER MINE FOREMAN IN THE TOILS – ASSISTANT CAUGHT AND ON BAIL IN RANDSBURG – Conspiracy to Blow Up Famous Property After “High Grading” Is Charged to Nelson and Others – George Nelson, foreman of the Yellow Aster mine, was arrested last night at 12 o’clock by Under Sheriff Edward Dishman and placed in the county jail on a charge of having been implicated with Fred Yockey in the plot to blow up that famous mine and water pipe line with dynamite. Added to the sensation which the arrest of Nelson will cause is the allegation that Yockey and a number of other men not yet arrested, who were employed as miners in the Yellow Aster, were engaged in “high grading” the mine and finding out that the mine officials had learned of the thefts of rich ore which were going on had formed the dynamite conspiracy fort the purpose of destroying all evidence that the mine had been stripped of thousands of dollars’ worth or valuable ore. Nelson was arrested on evidence obtained by operatives of the Hurst detective agency, which has had the case in hand for several weeks, but it was not until within the past few days that his complicity with the affair was suspected. Alleged Plunder Great According to the statements made by the officers last night Nelson, Yockey and eight miners employed in the Yellow Aster have been for months taking out ore which runs into the thousands of dollars per ton, and after milling the same in a small contrivance made by them for the purpose have been shipping the gold to the mint in San Francisco and the assay office in Denver. From the inception of the dynamite plot the officers of the mining company are said to have been aware of the alleged thefts and to have taken steps to run down and arrest every man connected with the scheme. Evidence was first obtained showing that the men had been high grading. It was the discovery of this evidence it is said which prompted the miners to attempt to blow up a portion of the mine with dynamite. Before the dynamite plot could be carried out evidence of this was also obtained and the arrest of the men said to be guilty of the conspiracy was ordered at once. Yockey First Taken Fred Yockey, who was employed as an assistant to Nelson, was the first man arrested. The news of his arrest becoming known, the other men, it is said, at once left town suddenly. At that time Nelson, whose position with the mine was a responsible one, was suspected of complicity in the matter and he was taken into the confidence of the mine owners and in this way is said to have received and communicated to his partners information which enabled them to escape arrest. A few days ago the detectives found evidence which they claim implicates Nelson in the “high grading” and dynamite conspiracies, and his arrest was ordered. He left Randsburg, however, before he could be arrested, and come to Los Angeles. Is Finally Located The detective employed by the mine searched for him three days before he was located. He was then pointed out to Under Sheriff Dishman and the warrant which had been sworn out for his arrest served. Nelson refused to make any other than a general statement last night. He denied emphatically that he was concerned in the so-called dynamite plot or that he had been guilty directly of indirectly of high grading. He further added that the arrest of himself and Yockey was a conspiracy.” — Los Angeles Herald
August 19, 1908: “YOCKEY.TAKEN IN CUSTODY AND HELD AT RANDSBURG –RANDSBURG, Aug. 18.—Constable Thomson arrived at noon today, having in custody. Fred F. Yockey, who was taken before Justice Coleman of Mojave, charged with willfully and feloniously conspiring about June 27 to blow up the pipe line ‘of the Yellow Aster Company He was then told of his rights and placed under $1000 bond to appear for examination Tuesday, August 25. ‘The bond was furnished by S. K. Dickenson and Patrick Byrne. He named as witnesses outside of Randsburg Mrs. C. H. Clark; her mother, Mrs. Lindley; her brother and sister, Arthur Lindley and Mrs. James G. Gray, all of Los Angeles. There was no excitement, the principal feeling seeming to be against Nelson. A warrant for the latter’s arrest was Issued by Justice Coleman this afternoon. – Los Angeles Herald
August 19, 1908: “SAY HE PLANNED TO BLOW UP PIPE LINE YOCKEY CLAIMS CONSPIRACY AGAINST HIM–Woman Detective Asserts She Was Forced at Point of Revolver to Sign False Accusations Against Miner. Fred Yockey, arrested Sunday on a charge of conspiring to blow up a pipeline belonging to the Yellow Aster mines, was yesterday taken to Randsburg by Constable Dave Thompson of that place, but promises to return to Los Angeles for the purpose of prosecuting enemies who, he says, have entered into a conspiracy to railroad him to the penitentiary. Yockey, who at one time was vice president of the Western Federation of Miners at Randsburg, said yesterday that he had resigned his office in the Randsburg local and had come to Los Angeles a week ago, preparatory to going to the oil fields. His principal reason for leaving the mining camp, he said, was because he discovered the plot against him and wished to avoid trouble. The principal witness who is expected to appear in Yockey’s behalf is Mrs. Alice G. Clark, a woman detective living at 1324 East Forty-Eighth Street, Los Angeles, who, according to her own statement, was the unwilling tool of Yockey’s enemies. Mrs. Clark declares she was forced by Joseph Coplan, a detective, at the point of a revolver to sign reports to the mining company and a detective agency in this city, implicating Yqckey in the plot to destroy the pipe line. She now says these reports are false and were signed through fear. According to Yockey, the whole plot is ridiculous, but he declared he would fight the matter to a finish. “They say,” he commented, “that I planned to blow up the pipe line. Do you imagine for a moment I would do this when the only damage would be the destruction of a couple of links which could be remedied in a short time? I have nothing against the Yellow Aster Company, except that I despise it because it would not pay its employees living wages. I have never been near the property. I do not advocate violence, but I maintain that the man who digs treasure from the earth is entitled to his share of what he produces. He risks his life and health, and I do not think the paltry $2.50 daily wages paid him are enough for his needs, or a proper compensation for his work and the risks he runs. The Yellow Aster is not friendly with the union, and in that fact lays the whole trouble.” Yockey and Mrs. Clark were at Attorney Appel’s office yesterday and a detailed account of the alleged plan to send • Yockey to the penitentiary was given. “I will not see an innocent man suffer like this,” said Mrs. Clark, “and am determined to tell all I know of the plot against him. The reports were signed by me while Coplan, who is known as Nelson, sat across the table with a revolver pointed at my head. I signed sixteen of the reports, and they were all false,” — Los Angeles Herald \
August 22, 1908: “WOMAN REVEALS DASTARDLY PLOT – MEN PLANNED TO BLOW UP LODGING HOUSE –Witness Declares Conspiracy Hatched to Involve Miners in Murder of Innocent Workers – Further developments in the alleged plot to blow up the pipe line at Randsburg which brought about the arrests of Fred Yockey and George Nelson in Los Angeles and their return to Randsburg, came to light yesterday when Claude H. Clark, accompanied by his 10 year old daughter Edna, appeared in the superior court in response to an order made by Judge James to state his reasons ‘why the child should not be returned to her mother.’ Mrs. Clark has filed a suit for divorce against her husband, and when this comes to trial further light on this supposed conspiracy may come to light. Little Edna Clark was restored by the court’s order to her mother, formerly a detective employed at Randsburg during the troubles following a strike at that place, and as she fondled in her arms and the lips of her baby sister, Thelma, she wept as only an overjoyed child can weep. Postponement Denied When Clark appeared in court his attorney asked for a continuance until next Friday when he said two important witnesses would be present. The delay was opposed by Horace Appel, Mrs. Clark’s attorney. “This mother,” he said, “was good enough to have the care of the child from her birth up to a few weeks ago, and I believe she is still a fit person to watch over her, The Court would not grant a postponement and Clark was called to the stand. He said he had taken the child from the home of his sister-in-law, Mrs. Etta Gray, 488 East Thirteenth Street, where she had been placed during the absence of her mother in Randsburg. “I made arrangements two weeks before that time with the Sommers family, living at 1143 South Olive Street to care for the girl,’ said Clark, “and she has remained there since.” Mrs. Clark followed her husband. Charges against her character, she said, which had been made by her husband in a cross complaint in the divorce action, were a surprise to her. “They come like a thunderbolt,” said the woman, “and are utterly untrue. I worked as detective in Randsburg and my husband frequently sent me into houses of ill repute to work as a sewing girl and secure all the information I could. I learned of a plot to blow up the pipe line and a boarding house and told him I did not think myself of the children should live with after that. He told me if it would be “all off with me” if I informed on him.” Mrs. Anna Lindley, mother of Mrs. Clark, who lives at 1324 East Forty-Eighth Street, said she overheard a conversation, between Clark and others carried on in her dining room. “He told me at that time, between July 1 and 4,” said Mrs. Lindley, “that he intended to blow up the pipe line and lay it on to Fred Yockey, I protested against such and act, and he said, ‘Oh, it is hall in in the business.” “Later he told me the plan was all spoiled by Mrs. Clark, who, he said, ‘always bucked everything.’ “ Clark denied ever having engaged in such a conversation. He admitted after much sparring that he had been employed by the Hurst detective agency, not only at Randsburg, but also in Bisbee, Ariz. “And didn’t your wife tell you that any man who would ask his wife to blow up a building full of miners and lay the blame upon innocent men was not fit to have a wife?” asked Attorney Appel. “She never talked to me on the subject.” replied Clark Mrs. Clark’s complaint in the divorce suit alleges non-support, cruelty and other charges, which Clark in an answer filed yesterday denies. Judge James, in restoring Edna to her mother, warned the latter not to influence the child’s mind against her father pending the divorce suit. Mrs. Clark, before leaving the stand declared she had retired from the detective business and expected in the future to live with her mother, supporting herself by sewing. Clark in now, employed by the Pacific Electric railway as a motorman. The Sommers family on South Olive Street, in whose care Edna was placed by Clark, say they have no knowledge of the troubles in the Clark household. – Los Angeles Herald
August 22, 1908: “FRED YOCKEY IN TROUBLE—Old residents of Bisbee are speculating whether the Fred Yockey under arrest in California on a charge of conspiracy to blow up the Yellow Aster Mine at Randsburg, Cal. is the same Fred Yockey formerly of Bisbee. Yockey is vice president of the miners’ union at that place and was arrested on complaint of a woman detective of the mining company. The Fred Yockey who was about here was a popular miner who won the single jack drilling contest here two years ago. – The Bisbee Daily Review,
August 20, 1908: “JAIL PRIVATE DETECTIVE –Los Angeles Aug. 19 – George Nelson, the private detective accused of causing the arrest of Fred Yockey, a Randsburg miner and official of the federation of miners, by unlawful methods, is in the county Jail pending the arrival of an officer from Randsburg to take him to that place.” – The San Francisco Call
January 9, 1910: “New Equipment for Aster. Two seven ton engines and 21 three ton cars have just been added to the equipment of the Yellow Aster mine. As the mine is projected into the hill it becomes necessary to move more waste than formerly and the engines and cars in use were found inadequate. The engines were ordered some timea go from a firm in Pittsburg, Pa., but only arrived Monday. The Yellow Aster mine is still one of the best in the country and its working is being reduced to a system. —Randsburg Miner.” — San Francisco Call