Bonanza King Mine
Location In San Bernardino County, I40 at Essex Road. 10.5 miles NW to Ranch road. 6.2 miles N on Ranch road, 1 mile west 34 58.95n 11530.38w
History In the spring of 1880,
George Goreman and P. Dwyer, prospectors from Ivanpah, discovered rock that
assayed from $640 to $5,000 a ton in silver. Their discovery, about 15 miles
south of the old Macedonia District, was the birth of the Bonanza King Mine.
Some of the other nearby mines included the Rattler, the Treasury, the Lucknow,
the Mozart, and the Cashier.
On July 3, 1880, it was reported that ore was being prepared to ship to the Ivanpah Consolidated Mining and Milling Company at Ivanpah from the Bonanza King. However, further development was hampered by a lack of capital. Sometime around the spring of 1881, J. D. Boyer and H. L. Drew, San Bernardino businessmen, purchased the mine. In June, 1881, they also paid $20,000 for the Pierce Mine. This was probably a good investment, seeing that $28,000 in ore had already come out of it, yet the remainder of 1881 is notably lacking in information from the mines.
On the Bonanza King, in January, 1882, a rich vein assaying $100 to $1,200 per ton was discovered and a plan was “on foot to erect a large mill there in a short time.” Instead of going through with these plans themselves, they sold the mine to the Bonanza King Consolidated Mining Company, reportedly for $200,000.
In July, 1882, a new hoisting works arrived for the Bonanza King Mine via Colton, and a ten-stamp mill built by Prescott, Scott and Company of San Francisco was freighted from Mojave by Remi Nadeau. All was in preparation for the mill. Between 100 and 150 men had actively been employed since May or June. The main shaft was being sunk by 3 shifts of men, and some 2,000 tons of ore worth $230 a ton sat waiting on the dump. A post office had opened in June, and the town of Providence was born.
On March 11, 1885, the mines and mill were shut down, and virtually all the miners left. About a week later, the mines reopened with only 15 miners who earned $3 instead of the previous $4. By the end of March, 35 to 40 men were back at the mine, which previously employed from 150 to 200.
The mill operated more or less continuously from January, 1883, to March, 1885, and during June, 1885. This is a total of 28 months which would equal about $1,700,000.
Little took place on the Bonanza King property in the 1880s after the mill burned, but at the nearby Kerr Mine, a five-stamp mill was erected late in 1885. This mill ran continuously at least until 1890 and paid good dividends.
In 1906 the Bonanza King Mine was reactivated by the Trojan Mining Company. They installed a ten-stamp mill powered by three gasoline engines. The mine was active only until September, 1907, but the property was examined and a thorough report was written. This aroused a great deal of interest, and in 1914 Hall Rawitser and Company of Massachusetts purchased the mine, beginning development work.
The company totally revamped the mill, and during 1919 was treating 40 tons of the old dumps a day. Some rich ore at this time was shipped and reportedly carried 100 to 500 ounces of silver a ton. Operations were suspended in 1920. During 1923 the property was leased to the Bonanza King Consolidated Mines Company, and 6 men were employed, working on the third, fourth, fifth, and sixth levels. One carload of ore was shipped in May, 1924.
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