How Much Gold?

I recently ran across an article from 1942 by T.A. Rickard detailing the value of gold taken out of the Klondike during the Gold Rush:
“The output of gold from the Yukon in 1897 was $2,500,000; this rose to $10,000,000 in 1898 and reached its maximum of $22,275,000 in 1900. Up to the end of 1911 the total output was over $140,000,000. After 1900 a decrease began, continuing until the output in 1910 was only $4,570,000. In 1939 with the price of gold at $35 an ounce, it was $3,171,000.”

Today gold is running around $1340 an ounce. I tried to do the math but there were way too many zeros there, lets just say there was over a Billion dollars of gold at our current price taken out during those few years.

The Klondike Rush, T.A. Rickard, 1942 in the British Columbia Historical Quarterly, June 1942. read the entire article at:

John Wilson Snook

John Snook was the nephew of Marshal James McCain Shoup who was a member of the Arctic Brotherhood and the Midnight Sun Conspiracy. Perhaps Shoup was suspicious of everyone and so appointed his young nephew Snook (sometimes incorrectly spelled Shook) to be a Marshal in Dyea in February 1898 after Marshal Rowan was shot.
John Snook was only 22 years old, born October 20, 1876 in Salmon Idaho. He was only Marshal until April of 1898, (perhaps things got a little out of hand, more than he could handle). In any event, he made one very good contact while in Skagway – the sister of Frederick Clayson (famous Christmas Eve murder December 1899).
Charlotte Clayson was a bit younger than John, she was only 14 in 1898. So John waited until 1903 and married Charlotte in Portland Oregon. They moved to Salmon Idaho soon after and had at least two boys, John and Frederick there. John Wilson Snook was active in Republican politics in the 1920’s in Idaho. There is a law firm in Salmon that bears the Snook name, so apparently the law played an important part of this family’s tradition.
Charlotte’s sister, Esther Clayson Pohl was the subject of an earlier blog for her work in Portland.
John W. Snook had a long life, and died at the age of 99 in 1975 in Salmon Idaho. Charlotte, his wife of 67 years, had died in 1970. Seen above is the Salmon Idaho Cemetery where they probably lie.

“Law of the Yukon” Dobrowsky; 1909 AB book;;1902 directory, family chronicles; Mission Klondike by Sinclair; Mills; familysearch

Henry Walter Hovey

Major/Captain Hovey of the U.S. Company L, 24th Infantry came to Skagway on May 15, 1899. Their first camp in Dyea burned so they rented a barracks in Skagway and stayed until 1902. Although the 24th Infantry was an all-African American company, Hovey was probably white. He was a member of the Arctic Brotherhood in 1901 and, according to the New York Times, he was also at a Midnight Sun conspiracy meeting in November 1901.
Henry Hovey was born in 1852 in Vasselboro, Maine, and he died on this day, November 15, 1908 in Northfield Vermont from heart failure probably resulting from something he contracted in the Phillipines. He was 56 year old.

from the online history of Norwich University, 1819-1911: “her history, her graduates, her roll of honor: He [Hovey]joined his regiment, the 24th United States Infantry at Fort Douglas, Utah, March 1899; but soon after reaching the post, the regiment was ordered to the Philippine Islands. He, with his company “L”,was ordered to southeastern Alaska, where he was given command of the district, with headquarters at Camp Dyea. This camp being destroyed by forest fires, July 18, 1899, he removed to Skagway, where he remained until ordered back to the University in September, 1902. He was promoted major, August 14, 1903 and was ordered to the Philippine Islands, July 1906, arriving there in September, he was in command of Cebu, Dojinrtnicnf of Visayas, September, 1906-November, 1907, excepting a few weeks, when he was in command of the regiment at Camp Bumpus, Leyte. He was retired from active duty, November 7, 1907 for “disability in line of duty” and returned to the United States in…”

1902 directory;family chronicles; Skagway Museum Record; NY Times article

David Nathan Hukill

D.N. Hukill was born in 1858 in Covington, Kentucky. He came from Seattle in 1899 with his new wife Henrietta Catherine McKenzie. They had four daughters and three sons born here in Skagway. His granddaughter still lives in Skagway, (Mavis Irene).
David first worked White Pass construction, and then as a janitor and carver. He later worked for the City of Skagway as a laborer for streets. He was said to be a labor organizer. He died on this day, November 15, 1917 in Sitka at the Pioneers Home there. He was 59 years old.
Seen above is a modern Skagway fossil mammoth ivory carver with his supply.

1900 census;1905 and 1915 directories.

Frederick Verbauwhede

Mr. Verbauwhede was born in 1850 in Wareghem, Flanders, Belgium. His family, wife Nathalie and three kids came to Skagway in 1898 from Portland Oregon. His store which sold candy and cigars is still standing on Broadway and is owned by the National Park Service which leases it to Klondike Tours.
The photo above is of the other two cribs which he owned around the corner in “French Alley” between 2nd and 3rd off Broadway. The young lady pictured is not related to the family, she was a tenant.
Frederick and family stayed here until 1904 when they decided to go back to Europe and landed in Roubaix, France. His grandson, also named Frederick Verbauwhede still runs a casino in Normandie.

Frederick Verbauwhede died on this day, November 12, 1933 in Roubaix, France, he was 83.

1900 census;1902 directory;family chronicles Gold Rush participants website; descendant in France.

Samuel Haughton Graves

Mr. Graves was born in 1852 in Chicago, Illinois. He came to Skagway as the President of White Pass in 1898. He drove the ceremonial golden spike which finished the railroad line from Skagway to Whitehorse. This happened at Carcross on July 29, 1900.
So much has been written of him and his work supervising the 35,000 workers who built the railroad that I would not know where to begin.
Seen above is the administration building that once housed the offices of the White Pass President and staff. Today it is the administration building of the National Park Service. Graves’ office is the corner office overlooking the station and the harbor and is now the park’s Superintendent’s office. The office next to that was the railroad’s chief of operations but is now the park’s chief of administration (my husband, Reed). Some winter evenings when I go over to meet him for our walk home, the office is quiet and yet the ghosts of those great men linger on, I can almost smell the cigar smoke…
Graves died on this day, November 11, 1911 of a heart attack in Ottawa but is buried in the Graceland Cemetery in Chicago.

On the White Pass Payroll by Graves, 1908, Chicago; Minter

Leon Edward Henry Hudson

Born on this day, November 10, 1874 in New York, Lee Hudson came to Skagway around 1905 which is when he appeared on the directory.
He worked as a White Pass carpenter, a janitor for the bank, and a cook. He was the Chief of Police in 1923 and the Town Marshal in 1929. His wife Anna was originally from Germany or Norway and his daughter Lucilla was born in this area, in 1909. Anna died in 1912 at the age of 32 leaving Lucilla and Lee. Lee stayed on in Skagway and died in 1934 in Skagway. He is buried in the Pioneer Cemetery.

The photo above was taken in 1923 when President Harding visited. Is that Hudson holding the little girl? His daughter Lucilla was 14 then, perhaps that is her standing on the boardwalk wearing a white bow on her head…

1905, 1915, and 1923 directories;1920 and 1929 census; Mason directory; WWI registration; Skagway death record

George Little

Happy Birthday to “the kid” as he was known, born on this day, November 9, 1878 in Atwood Ontario. He was the mail carrier for the route Skagway to Dawson.

Samuel Graves, President of White Pass, praised “Mr. Little” in 1903 for work as second officer on the Columbian event near Dawson. (White Pass purchased the Columbian in 1901 but the Columbian was caught in Dawson for the winter in 1903 when navigation closed with no warning. It wintered in the ice in front of the BYN docks, receiving “nominal damage” in the spring.)

Soon after, George became tired of the hustle and bustle of the Yukon Gold Rush and headed for the Bulkley Valley in British Columbia. As he gazed over the beautiful Skeena and Kitsumkallum Valleys, decked in spring finery, he knew this was what he was searching for and stayed. When the government threw this land open for sale in 1905 George Little, the Founder of Terrace, staked his claim on acres of the heavily wooded timberland, including the site on which Terrace now stands today.

City of Terrace website; “On the White Pass Payroll” by Graves, 1908

Edward Lawrence Schieffelin

Ed Schieffelin was born on this day, November 8, 1847 in Tioga County, Pennsylvania. Although he did not come to the Yukon through Skagway, he is significant because he came to Alaska to prospect in 1882-it was the first significant investment made in Yukon mining.
He was a hardrock miner who had become a multi-millionaire in Arizona. In 1881 he and his brother Eff had sold their Tombstone claims and headed to San Francisco where they purchased the steamboat “New Racket”. He chartered a schooner there and put three years of supplies and lashed the “New Racket” to the deck. He then took it to St. Michael where they took it up the Tanana and built a winter cabin. After prospecting for awhile they did find some gold but not a bonanza and the winter weather discouraged them. They sold their boat to McQueston, Harper and Mayo and returned south.

Not one to stay in one place too long, Ed traveled to Oregon to search the hills for yet another claim. In May 1897, a neighboring prospector found him lying dead in his cabin. Although he always looked much older in appearance, Ed Schieffelin was only 49 years old. The coroner reported Schiefflin died of heart failure.
He was originally buried near the cabin in Oregon. But, when his wife went through his paperwork and will, she found another request he wished to have fulfilled. “It is my wish, if convenient, to be buried in the dress of a prospector, my old pick and canteen with me, on top of the granite hills about three miles westerly from the city of Tombstone Arizona, and a monument, such as prospectors build when locating a mining claim, be built over my graveyard or cemetery.”

The mayor of Tombstone made the arrangements and Ed Schieffelin was finally laid to rest in his beloved Tombstone on Sunday, May 23, 1897. His wife, mother, brother and a large crowd of friends attended the service. He was buried wearing his old red, flannel shirt and faded prospector’s clothes. Beside him they placed his pick, shovel, and the old canteen he had with him on the day he found his silver claim.
He is buried outside Tombstone, the city he founded in 1877.

Webb: Yukon-the Last Frontier; Encyclopedia of Frontier Biography;

Henry Cross

Henry was born in 1844 in Germany. He shows up in the 1881 census as a miner in the Cassiar District, and then he came to Skagway and worked on the railroad. Unfortunately he got caught between cars and was crushed to death on this day, November 7, 1901 and is buried in the Gold Rush Cemetery. Another White Pass fatality.
Seen above is a great photo of a train accident, though not from Skagway.

Skagway Death Record