Julia Thomas Loan

Discuss information about the Lost Dutchman Mine
Joe Ribaudo
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The Julia Deception?

Post by Joe Ribaudo »

All,

Here are a few things to consider:

Waltz spent many years working a variety of goldfields. What if he collected rich ore specimens throughout those years as his "nest egg". At the end of his life, he has a small amount of that ore remaining and it could have come from many places.....including Turkey Creek.

He fears dying alone with no one to care for him. Enter Julia who might take care of him in his final days. He has the box of ore to offer, but what if he feels that he might recover and doesn't want to give everything he has to her.

He helps her out with a small amount of his remaining ore. Does he tell her there is not much left, or does he tell her he will show her the richest mine in the world.......soon, and insure her loyalty and best efforts to keep him alive.

This does help to explain the different descriptions of "Dutchman's" ore, and creates a reason for a deceptive tale.

Just some food for thought.

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Thomas - Petrasch Search Timeline

Post by novice »

Rereading this thread brought back memories of a simpler more innocent time for me. Joe Ribaudo, Matthew Roberts, Greg Davis, Thomas Glover, Billie Sharp and Wiz all contributing. I don’t know where everything went wrong but it is sad.

Joe,
When I read your latest post, I thought you must have been rereading the account by Robert Blair. :) You have pretty much summed up his story?

All,
I would like to revisit some of the timeline of the Thomas – Petrasch search in the first couple of years after the death of Jacob Waltz.

My timeline “was” centered around three contemporary documents, two newspaper articles and Gottfried’s voter Registration.

1. “A Queer Quest”, August 27, 1892 – (Paraphrasing) Julia Thomas has been searching for the Lost Mine for two months, aided by two men
2. Registration of Gottfried Petrach to vote, August 29, 1892.
3. “Another Expedition To The Superstition Mountains,” September 9, 1892 – (Paraphrasing) A party of three men, Herman Petrick of Montana, Joseph Gilmore of Minneapolis and Gottfried Petrick left Phoenix to search for the Lost French mine. Gottfried Petrick had returned from there recently.

From revisiting this thread, I now realize there are other documents that shed light on the timeline.

From the Greg Davis Posts
1. Indenture made out on June 1, l891, between Julia Thomas and Price W. Butler for the rental of a room formerly occupied as a saloon by James Coleman in what is known as the Capitol Building with use of the grounds in the rear to the alley for a term of two years.
2. Arizona Daily Gazette; July 10, 1892. Schooler & Wilson have bought out the Thomas ice cream parlors and expect to put in all kinds of the latest kinds of drinks made." She still has a year left on her lease.
3. Suggested research to find a new lease agreement for the building signed by Schooler and Wilson and perhaps the sale of the contents of the business. (Don’t know whether any of this has been done?)

From the Joe Ribaudo Post
1. Tom Kollenborn wrote “And so, on August 11, 1892, the three partners set out across the broiling Arizona desert toward Superstition Mountain in search of gold. They spent about three and a half weeks searching the canyons and ravines adjacent to Weaver's Needle and Bluff Spring Mountain."

To be that precise on the date, it would seem that there was another newspaper article associated with this statement? Of course this timeline doesn’t agree with the “A Queer Quest” article.

I realize the Jim Bark Notes and Sims Ely reference this time period but these accounts were probably recorded over 40 years later and I have placed them on hold for the time being.

If we take everything literally from the documents, it would seem that the initially search began about the end of June in 1892 and that search party would have consisted of Julia Thomas, Gottfried Petrasch and almost surely Rhinehart Petrasch? They were in the mountains two months.

They returned to Phoenix near the end of August, 1892 and Gottfried Petrasch registered to vote. This indicates to me that he had been back in Arizona for some time.

On September 8, 1892 Gottfried returned to the mountains, but this time with Joseph Gilmore and his son Herman Petrasch. The newspaper article gives the impression that both Herman and Joseph were both recent arrivals to Phoenix. Herman from Montana and Joseph from Minneapolis. I know this is in conflict with other stories that Joseph Gilmore had been associated with Emil and Julia in their business much earlier. It just seemed strange that the newspaper would record where Joseph came from if he had been in Phoenix for sometime. Hopefully someone has some references that place Gilmore in Phoenix at the earlier dates.

Some questions.

Had Rhinehart already had a falling out with his father and Herman when they made the second trip? (He didn't go with them unless he joined them later.)

Are we sure that Julia ever returned to the mountains after this initial search? It has been suggested that Julia made multiple trips into the mountains?

Does anyone know of any updates or additional documents that would shed light on the timeline.

Garry
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Blair

Post by Joe Ribaudo »

Garry,

Hope all is well with you and Carol. Have to admit, I still don't see what such a pretty gal saw in a coot like you, but..... :lol:

I find it a sad situation as well. What's interesting is to see the number of views this site still gets when anyone posts. My guess is that those who left are unable to cut the ties. :wink:

I have three copies of "Tales of the Superstitions", one of them signed and in a protective slip case. It's a well researched and written book by an intelligent man.

It's been awhile since I have read one of them, but I don't believe my thoughts were generated by anything he wrote. I have read most of the authors, but believe I have come to my own conclusions. My post wasn't really a conclusion......just a what if?

As to your conclusions on the time line, I believe the first search consisted of only Julia and Rhiney. They did not get very far into the mountains and had to turn back.

"Are we sure that Julia ever returned to the mountains after this initial search? It has been suggested that Julia made multiple trips into the mountains?"

Bark makes it clear that Julia made multiple trips.

Very nice post. Glad to see it here.

Take care,

Joe
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Post by Scott »

I am wondering about the logistics of the search. I know the mountain rain fall has changed thru the last 30 years due to tne heat island effect
Phoenix metro has brought on. Would the summer rains of 1892 allowed a 3-4 weeks stay in the mountains? I realize the Salt is just N.W. of the area. I have not spent more than a few days in the area.
Could they find enough water to support them in August?
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Post by djui5 »

Scott wrote: Could they find enough water to support them in August?

That's a very good question, and if the terrain was anything like it is now, I doubt it. They would have to know where the springs were. Then again, if the terrain is like Aurum said it was, then there was probably way more water back there and the heat wouldn't have been quite as bad as it is today. Maybe they camped at Willow Springs 8O :lol: :lol:

Again, who knows. Too many if's. We don't know where they went, or where they camped.
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Camping

Post by Joe Ribaudo »

Scott and Randy,

If you can find a copy of the article that P.C. Bicknell wrote in 1886, you will be able to see what month he was camped at Willow Spring.

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Post by novice »

Joe,

I assume that when you speak of the first trip being only Rhinehart and Julia, you are referring to the Jim Bark notes in which he relates;

…. As I was riding the range about six miles west of the home ranch in August 1892 or 1893, I met some campers near an old well belonging to the ranch, and they proved to be a colored woman by the name of Thomas and a young man about 18 years old by the name of Rhiney Petrach, whom Mr. and Mrs. Thomas had adopted………… I was somewhat surprised to meet them camped near the Superstition mountain, as it was very hot and an extremely desolate country to camp in. I asked them why they were camped there, and she replied that they were out on a vacation. I invited them to come up to the house as they at least would have shade. She replied that they were going back in a short time, so I rode on up the canyon following their buggy tracks, and they had gone up the canyon toward the Superstition mountains, as far as it was possible to go with a horse and buggy, and much farther than I thought was possible……..

If Bark has his facts straight, about the encounter, he saw only Rhinehart and Julia and they had a horse and buggy with which they were trying to enter the mountains, I can understand why you might suspect this was their first trip. (Only two people, a buggy, no wagon, no pack animals, no Gottfried or Herman, etc.)

All,

The problem I have is trying to fit this trip into the timeline of the newspaper articles. I realize that both the newspaper and Bark accounts could be flawed but I then have to begin to make excuses for one or the other to make them fit.

Also, doesn’t it seem strange that Gottfried was returning to the mountains on September 8, along with Herman and Joseph Gilmore. Where were Julia and Rhinehart?

We also have a portion of Herman’s letter from Kollenborn book. This is a firsthand account that was also recorded 40 years later. I have not seen the letter but the quoted portion does not name any other participants. (See Joe’s post from earlier in this thread for the Herman quote)

The newspaper article leads me to believe that the September 8th trip was Herman’s first trip and his later description of the event in the letter could very well fit around the newspaper account?

The newspaper article doesn’t seem to support the popular story that Gottfried and Herman returned from Montana together. We don’t know where Gottfried was living before arriving in Phoenix and he seems to arrived well before Herman. The September 9th article makes it pretty clear that this wasn’t Gottfried’s first trip in the search.

When did Rhiney and Julia make their first trip? Was it within the two month timeframe (Late June to late August of 1892) of the “Queer Quest” Article or perhaps earlier? When did Gottfried join the search?

Garry
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Post by djui5 »

I would find it hard to believe they waited from October of 1891 until July/August of 1892 to head into the mountains. Why wait until the hottest time of year? That just seems silly to me personally.
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Thomas search in the summer

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Randy,

I believe the common explanation would be that Julia had a business and she could not afford to just walk off and leave it. That's why Greg's research is important to the timeline. When did she close the business? She obviously had sold it to Schooler and Wilson by July 10, 1892 but we really don't know how much earlier since they apparently were upgrading the business before reopening?. When was she able to sell the business, how much inventory and equipment did she have to sell. (What kind of a money had she raised to conduct the search?)

Rhinehart also apparently contacted his father (Gottfried) in this time period and he returned to Phoenix. This also didn't happen overnight. The interesting question for me is, did Rhiney and Julia try to search before contacting Gottfried? This would push their activity much earlier but then we have to deal with the business sale.

Hopefully some new information will be found that will help. (I'll bet it's out there!)

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Re: Thomas search in the summer

Post by djui5 »

novice wrote:
Hopefully some new information will be found that will help. (I'll bet it's out there!)

Garry

I agree :D Nothing is better than answering questions and finding the truth.
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Post by zentull »

On May 8th of 1890 Julia gave possesion of the following items to Reinhart due to back wages he was owed in the amount of 370 dollars( Glover reports as 320 dollars in error)


A patent Peanut roaster
5 show cases
4 counters
2 sets of shelving
1 Hallis safe
35 candy jars
A lightning shaker
1 dozen soda fountain glasses w/ silver plated holders
20 chairs
8 tables
1 mirror
5 wall pictures
3 hat racks

Reinhart it would seem owned everything in the store at that point with just a few exceptions. I would believe he was boarding at Julias for free as well. Julia would own the Soda Fountain(balance still due on that) and be liable for the lease. This could resolve Hermans discussion that the Petraschs owned the store in some accounts. Emil deserted Julia in March and Waltz discussed the mine with them in December of that year. I have found no accounts concerning ownership of the items later or when the debt was settled, if at all. Julia was liable for 460 dollars to Reinhart at that time for the debt to be resolved that included an earlier loan.

Another curious note is that Gottfrieds whereabouts were unknown when George Petrasch died as according to the Arizona Gazette June 13 1885.

I believe the Petrachs found Julia too dramatic and devoid in any more information and jettisoned the deadweight asap. Julia would give out clues to the mine and sell maps, but appeared to be at a dead end in her searches. She would make periodic attempts years later, but they appear all show and very little go.

If there was a letter written to Gottfried or Herman it was sent soon after Waltz's death most likely. I doubt they were together, Herman implies they came at different times. I have always believed there were several cursory trips before the big push. Whether Bark is being misleading on the dates or just had forgotten some of it is up to speculation. The last trip Bark notes would have been the 3 Petraschs w/ Julia in Needle canyon I believe. Prior to that there seem to be several trips that involved different combinations.
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Julia's Debts

Post by novice »

Zentull,

Thanks for the additional details on the March 8, 1892 document. If I understand what you are saying, Julia was actually transferring ownership for these items and not simply providing them as security for back wages? You are also indicating that this transfer did not resolve the back wages issue but Julia still owed Rhiney $90? ($460 - $370)

Can you also share any additional details on the October 5, 1892 document regarding Julia’s borrowing money from Jim Lee or Rhiney (Dr. Glover)? I am still confused.

Do you know anything about Jim Lee and have you run across any “documents” that shed light on Joseph Gilmore?

What was it that gave you the impression that Gottfried was gone when George Petrasch died in 1885?

Regarding the letter written by Rhiney. You say “if there was letter”. It seems clear to me that there was a continuing correspondence between Rhiney and his father and between Herman and his father. I suspect they were probably also in contact with their mother from time to time. How else did they keep in contact and know where each was? Was there a mythical letter similar to the one that people continue to refer to? I don’t believe that at all.

Sorry for all the questions but I need all the help I can get!

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Post by zentull »

Arizona Gazette June 13th 1885

George Petrach, a boy aged 13 years and 2 months, died at the residence of his mother, in this city, on Thursday evening, June 11th, and was buried yesterday. Dysentary caused his death. The family has been in Phoenix but a short time and the whereabouts of the husband and father are unknown. We extend our condolences.


The information concerning the loan to Julia from Rhinehart is from book 4 page 179 book of misc. records. It is dated May 19th 1890 1:45 PM.

370 dollars was due for wages(seems excessive?) 460 dollars due to Petrasch total.
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