Jim Bark and the Deering/Chuning Timeline

Discuss information about the Lost Dutchman Mine
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Post by zentull »

That is a lot of ponies to share for a one pony show Joe. Sims Ely would have gotten excited about those ponies, but Jim Bark would keep it to himself. I for one have a peccary style all my own and sometimes see phantom ponies when all I am trying to do is extract the pork from the canyon of beans.
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Post by TGH »

Best be careful of those phantom ponies....you wouldnt want to take a ride on one just yet............
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Post by zentull »

The grill over rides everything. I have no illusion of what fuels my fire. Only 550 permits this year though, I was hoping for some wet this winter. May have to move back up into Peeples valley before long. I will fling my shafts at least one more season though before moving on.
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Archer?

Post by Joe Ribaudo »

Zen,

A bowhunter? That explains a lot. :lol:

I started as a pre-teen.

Respectfully,

Joe
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Vino Visions

Post by Joe Ribaudo »

Peter,

You could be right, but Brownie Holmes had no, zero, zilch, nada clue where the LDM was. As I said before, he followed Julia and when it became apparent she was as lost as he was, he struck out on his own.
The rest of his "search" story, is nothing more than B.S. misdirection.

I do think they all thought the LDM was west of LaBarge.

"AND JUST WHERE DO YOU THINK ED PIPER WAS DISCOVERED HIDING?
(AND WAS HE FOUNDING HIDING OR HEADING SOMEWHERE?) PLEASE IF YOU ARE GOING TO BRING UP SUBJECTS LIKE THIS, AT LEAST HAVE A CLUE ABOUT WHAT YOU ARE TALKING ABOUT........."

Can't tell you where he was hiding. He was setting on his ass hiding in the rocks. Don't think he was "heading somewhere". I have more than a clue as to what I am talking about here. Why would you say such a thing? Do you KNOW otherwise? If not, why question it at all?

It seems to me that if you are going to comment about something someone else has said, you should "AT LEAST HAVE A CLUE ABOUT WHAT YOU (PETER) ARE TALKING ABOUT......" :roll: :lol:

The problem here, Peter, is that while you sneer at my list you offer nothing of your own. I take that back, you do have a pony in this show..., his name is Peter. :)

I have been looking at the clues in this game for 47 years now. Not as long as some, but it's a fair amount of time. Memory is starting to head south, but I can still hold an intelligent conversation on Dutch Hunting with most.

Until someone, like you, comes up with the LDM or anything of value out of the Superstitions, I will put my notion of "A CLUE" up against anyone's.
You may have better powers of deduction, but you are still working this Forum for information.....same as everyone else. :wink:

As I am no longer going into the Superstitions, and have never looked for the LDM/Two Soldiers/Joe Deering mine, I hope you are the one who finds it. You can take that to the bank. (Goldman's?) :)

Respectfully,

Joe
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Post by TGH »

Can't tell you where he was hiding. He was setting on his ass hiding in the rocks. Don't think he was "heading somewhere". I have more than a clue as to what I am talking about here. Why would you say such a thing? Do you KNOW otherwise? If not, why question it at all?

I SAY SUCH A THING BECAUSE I HAVE SOME KNOWLEDGE OF THE INCIDENT....

The problem here, Peter, is that while you sneer at my list you offer nothing of your own. I take that back, you do have a pony in this show..., his name is Peter.

WHY SHOULD I OFFER ANYTHING OF MY OWN? WHY WOULD ANYONE WHO BELIEVES THEY HAVE KNOWLEDGE OF WHERE THE LDM LIES SHARE THAT KNOWLEDGE ON A PUBLIC FORUM??? I HAVE NO BOOK TO PROMOTE, NO "TEAM" (man I loathe that term when it comes to Dutch-hunting..... as if every "team" needs a captain to keep all the underlings in line) TO CONVINCE THAT MY KNOWLEDGE IS UNIQUE OR COMPELLING, AND I DO NOT CARE WHETHER ANYONE THINKS I AM RIGHT OR WRONG.

THE ONLY PONY I GIVE A HOOT ABOUT IN ALL THIS IS A GHOST....

Until someone, like you, comes up with the LDM or anything of value out of the Superstitions, I will put my notion of "A CLUE" up against anyone's.
You may have better powers of deduction, but you are still working this Forum for information.....same as everyone else.

WORKING THE FORUM FOR INFORMATION? ABOUT THE LDM? LOL

P

PS: I do not agree entirely with your assessment of Brownies info, though lots of it is mixed up....just like Barks.
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deerings trail

Post by bill711 »

What? Piper was caught hiding in the rocks? Did he have his pants down? Could he claim to be taking a horse bocky? :lol: bill 8)
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Where?

Post by Joe Ribaudo »

Peter,

Just got in from one hell of a good Sushi meal. Saw the little dog telling me I had a message and smiled.

If you knew anything substantial about the "incident", you would know that he was hiding and you would know where. If you knew where, you would not hesatate in naming the place.

"as if every "team" needs a captain to keep all the underlings in line"

Yes, the team concept is very difficult for many people to understand. "Captains and underlings".....sounds like a great T.V. series.
When you were in the mountains with some of your close friends, were you a "captain" or an "underling"? Not a team? What then? Two or three people all pulling in opposing directions, or all focused on the same goal?

Like the Apache, you and I are on a team here. Loose, casual, able to walk away at any time, fighting each other at times, but always pulling in the same direction. Not geographically, but conceptually. Since you "loathe" the team word, perhaps you should consider "MOB", has a nice East Coast ring to it. :lol:

"WORKING THE FORUM FOR INFORMATION? ABOUT THE LDM? LOL"

OK....You are not sharing your "knowledge" and you are not looking for "information"........What's left? 8O

You do keep it interesting. Now what was that pesky topic again? :lol:

Take care,

Joe
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Post by TGH »

If you knew anything substantial about the "incident", you would know that he was hiding and you would know where. If you knew where, you would not hesatate in naming the place.

I WONT HESITATE A BIT. THE PLACE WAS HIGHER UP AND FURTHER AWAY THAN SOME THINK......

"as if every "team" needs a captain to keep all the underlings in line"

Yes, the team concept is very difficult for many people to understand. "Captains and underlings".....sounds like a great T.V. series.
When you were in the mountains with some of your close friends, were you a "captain" or an "underling"? Not a team? What then? Two or three people all pulling in opposing directions, or all focused on the same goal?

DONT REALLY FOLLOW YOU HERE. SINCE I AM NOT A MEMBER OF A "TEAM" , AND DONT HOLD MYSELF ABOVE OR BELOW ANYONE, THE CONCEPT WHILE DUTCH HUNTING IS KINDA ALIEN TO ME. RECKON I SHOULD GET TOGETHER A FEW FELLAS AND THRALL THEM WITH MY KNOWLEDGE, HAVE THEM SIGN SECRET AGREEMENTS AND SEND EM ON A WILD GOOSE CHASE OR TWO. GUESS THAT WOULD MAKE ME THE NANT'AN.

I ALWAYS HAVE CONSIDERED MYSELF JUST A SORTA "HIGH PRIVATE"...JUST A REGULAR LEGIONAIRRE I GUESS.



"WORKING THE FORUM FOR INFORMATION? ABOUT THE LDM? LOL"

OK....You are not sharing your "knowledge" and you are not looking for "information"........What's left?

THATS WHAT MOST FOLKS CANT FIGURE OUT. WHATS LEFT INDEED.....
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Double Talk

Post by Joe Ribaudo »

Peter,

Probably the key meaning for our discussion of "team", would be "a group of people working together in a coordinated effort" In the same vein, a group would be: "a number of persons or things classified together because of common characteristics, community of interests, etc."

OK, I see where you might not be able to follow the overall concept of what I was trying to say. :lol: Let me put it in another way: Where did you get the idea that there is an "I" in team? "I" is not really needed in a team. That means, in our type of team, there is no Grand PooPah. Just the team.

"I WONT HESITATE A BIT. THE PLACE WAS HIGHER UP AND FURTHER AWAY THAN SOME THINK......"

Well.....That's something new. You see, everyone I know believes the place is on exactly the same elevation and closer than some think..... :)

And to think, I believed you didn't have a clue here. :lol:

Good post, Peter. Perfect actually. :)

Take care,

Joe
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Post by TGH »

Gotcha.

So your "team" (which doesnt have an "i", but does have a "joe") DOESNT have a leader? It just has a "team".

Now I understand. Kinda........ it gets confusing tho, probably why Team Joe
is mucking around where it is....confusion and such.

I think I am going to form my own team now. Think I will call it the White Legion. I'll have to figure out the secret codes, handshakes and documents and such, but I'll muddle on thru I guess.

Any future White Legionairres out there wanna join?

lol
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Post by zentull »

Novice,

Which mine was it that Chuning claimed as the Dutchman in 1901 ? This is before he supposedly found it or finally figured out where it was again in 1910. Is this any of the mines we have been discussing previously?

Was the tunnel Chuning blasted in the vicinity of the Red paint mine related at all to the work he reportedly did for Silverlocke at the Red paint mine ?
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Post by novice »

Zentull,

Your question is where I reached an impasse previously. I "would" have told you that I believed Chuning's Worser Claim, north of the Paint Mine was the mine that Chuning thought was the Lost Dutchman. I would have based that on the timeframe of the Newspaper article (December 7, 1901 and the date that he noted in his filing papers for the Worser Mine in Phoenix on January 7, 1902. The filing papers indicated he did the location work and posted a notice on the Worser Claim, December 6, 1901.

There are several things that give me pause though.

1. The description of the location of the Worser claim does not match the newspaper article in which it states the LDM mine is located a short distance west of the Needle.

2. I got the impression that Joe Ribaudo knows the location of a mine that is now walled up with a monument in front of it that closely matches the "just west of the Needle location"?

3. Joe also didn't feel the description of the Worser Mine matched that of the mine in the Newspaper article.

Bark's description of the Worser Mine: "John ran a tunnel one hundred an fifty feet, along a crack in a hill near the Paint mine, north of Sombrero Butte. The crack was about eighteen inches wide and filled with boulders."

The newspaper description of Chuning's Lost Dutchman mine: "Chuning discovered old workings consisting of a shaft and tunnel, which he is now cleaning out, a short distance west of the Needle."

I wasn't having that big a problem with the description issue at first but since I know nothing of mining and was having trouble even visualizing a 150 foot crack filled with boulders that would require running a tunnel, I decided it wasn't my bailiwick.

I suspect that someone like yourself could shed much more light on this area by visiting the Worser Mine (I believe Late 49er has provided the coordinates). Greg Davis indicated he had been there but didn't have a flashlight to investigate inside. Is the crack filled with boulders still there or was that something that Chuning "cleaned out"?

The thought jumped to my mind that a boulder filled crack could have been an old vein that had been filled with boulders by someone. My thoughts are most likely completely out of touch with what's on the ground.

I do want to repeat two puzzling aspects that I had addressed previously but didn't get a response.

What was Bark calling Sombrero Butte (Weaver's Needle)?

Why did Bark know that there was "no possibility of their being a mine or any ore"?

As for Chuning working for Silverlocke at the Paint Mine, I have never heard that story but would certainly be interested in the details and the story's source.

Garry
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Location, Location, Location.

Post by Joe Ribaudo »

Zen and Garry,

There is an interesting correlation between the "crack in the hill" and Obie Stoker's claim.

Originally, Obie's claim was a fissure (crack) above Second Water. He and Olive left that claim and when they came back years later, it had filled in with boulders. Rather than cleaning it out, Obie decided to start a shaft lower down (The Question Mark Mine) and reach the "gold" easier that way. You can draw your own conclusions.

Stories do have a way of moving around over the years, and especially in the Superstition Mountains. Few people speak of John Chuning's orginal base camp, other than Dr. Glover, but knowing where he started his search for Joe Deering's mine/LDM makes the story a little more interesting.

Respectfully,

Joe Ribaudo
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Post by zentull »

1989 article by Tom Kollenborn

" In the Fall of 1898, John Chuning settled in a cave in La Barge Canyon below the Lower Box. He lived in this cave off and on for six years. He worked occasionally for Carl A. Silverlocke at the Indian Paint Mine at Red Pass between Boulder and La Barge Canyons. As the years progressed Chuning's health began to fail, and he eventually moved to Tortilla Flat around 1906. For several years Chuning helped out around Tortilla Flat. These odd jobs provided Chuning sufficient funds to continue his search for the Two Soldier's Lost Mine which he believed was the Dutchman's Lost Mine. Chuning entertained travelers who stopped at Tortilla Flat between 1908-1910 with stories about the Superstition Mountains. "

I believe Bark meant that Chuning blasted the tunnel without any physical evidence. I believe I have been to the site twice around 1978-79 and around 1982-84. I don't think that I knew the Chuning story back then enough to really care about spending any time there. Weeks ago when coming off Bluff Springs I thought of heading that way, but decided to follow Joe and Peters arguments East and become better acquainted with Music mountain.


While Bark may have been referring to Weavers Needle, I never understand why a landmark that is identified as such by the 1870s is always identified differently by so many sources. Weavers Needle had been Weavers Needle even in Waltzs time.
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Bark and Deering

Post by bill711 »

I do not think Bark and Deering found the ldm " maybe a similier mine" because at that time with all the activity in the sup,s you couldn,t haul that kind of rich ore without anybody knowing about it. After learning that Bark wrote his notes 25 yrs. after? I have to believe that his account of starting to hunt for the ldm is true BUT his later stories are just that! It explains the discreponcies in them. Zen; I read in an old story that minor,s needle was named the sombero peak by the spanish. That bill Minor " a early day prospecter" led the peeples party from cal. He had found some rich gold near a tall needle rock when the indians discovered him and ran him out. He led them back to find the place by the tall needle and couldn,t find it and they were about to hang his a-s when one of the minors seen sombero peak and yelled look there is Minors needle. The party got to laughting at the humor of the situation and didn,t hang him BUT sombro peak was renamed for him. He actually led the peeples party over some of the richest gold bearing ground in the country they found out later. The prospers were mad that he couldn,t find the placer gold he was trying to take them to. Weather this is true I don,t know BUT it was a very old story!!!!!!!!!!! bill
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Post by zentull »

A nice collection of stories by Tom Kollenborn can be located at the Apache Junction library site here which includes the Chuning story among others:

http://www.ajpl.org/aj/superstition/title.htm
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Chuning Timeline (1895-1898)

Post by novice »

John Chuning discovered the formation in the Fall of 1895 that would eventually lead to all of the activity on the Salt River. According to Bark, John had returned to the ranch and showed him some ore he had broken off and ask Bark what he thought. They left the next day to check it out and after looking it over, Bark decided it was worth pursuing and spending some money on.

(Most of the following is taken from documents and newspaper articles provided largely by Greg Davis.)

Bark and Chuning did the location work and Bark went to Phoenix and on November 19, 1895, filed a Claim under the name DEFENDER GOLD MINE (On the Salt River above present day Horse Mesa Dam) in both he and Chuning's names.

From Bark and newspaper accounts we can pretty much follow the development of the prospect. It seems Bark and Chuning returned and built a burro trail to reach the site and began extracting ore. They then built a burro powered arastra to process the ore. Bark soon grew tired of this and decided to install a water wheel driven arastra using the Salt River for power.

From March 3, to March 20, 1896 Bark was in Phoenix and Mesa and the newspapers reported that he was getting supplies together to build the water powered arastra. He wanted to process the ore he and Chuning had already dug out (About 30 tons) and demonstrate that the prospect was a good one.

The July 3, 1896 Arizona Republican reported that Bark was back in town and the water powered arastra was up and running.

Newspaper reports on September 11 and September 22, 1896 told of Bark being back in the city. A lot of work had been done at the site and the prospect was netting $10 a day using the arastra. By now Bark had interested out of state investors and there were plans to build a wagon road to the site and put in a stamp mill. It was reported that a California Company apparently being financed by Chicago capital had 5 claims in which they were interested.

It appears from the article that the arastra was still operating at this time but from the Bark Notes, we know that he went to town for supplies and when he returned the Salt River had raised and washed the water wheel away. (This seems to be the most likely time period for when they lost the water wheel.) According to Bark they had netted almost $1600 in gold from the operation when they lost the arastra.

Numerous claims in the area had been posted about the middle of August but it wasn't until October when they were filed for record in Phoenix.

There were two additional claims posted by Bark and Chuning. On August 14, 1896 Bark and Chuning located a mine called the PURITAN, very near their initial mine. Bark filed the location on October 12, 1896. On the same day Bark also filed a placer mine claim near the mouth of Alder Creek (North side of the Salt River) which they called CURIOSITY.

The other individuals involved in filing claims in the same area and timeframe were Frank Criswell, William Criswell and Harry Criswell (2 claims), James Bark, E. D. Boody (Bark and Criswell's Foreman), Samuel Smith and John H. Heise (1 claim), James Bark, E. D. Boody and John H. Heise (1 claim) and James Bark and John Heise (5 claims). Including the 3 claims filed by Bark and Chuning, we have 12 claims related to the same area. They were on both sides of the Salt River.

I could find nothing on John Heise and I suspect he was the representative for the outside investors.

It's not clear what happened next but I have seen no evidence that there was any follow-up by the investors to build a wagon road and stamping mill. It would seem to me that they probably sent their mining people in and after examining the location and ore they decided against investing a lot of money.

Bark and Chuning along with Criswell and the others apparently continued to hold out hope that it was still a worthwhile project. Bark and Chuning filed an Affidavit of Improvement on both the DEFENDER and PURITAN mines in Phoenix on December 15, 1897. The improvement work on the Defender mine was done by Henry and William Criswell, at which time they ran a tunnel for 63 feet. Chuning did the work on the Puritan mine in which he dug an open cut and tunnel in all 14 feet in length.

From Barks Notes:
John and I drifted on the vein until we came to the end; then sunk a winze about thirty-five feet and came to the bottom. The vein became narrower as we sunk and the value less. John said to me one day, "Jim, you can have my interest in this mine, if I have any interest. I am going back and hunt some more for the Dutchman."

In a short time after that, I gave to Criswell, my partner, and Elmer Boody, foreman of the cow ranch, my interest, and I went back to the cow ranch. Criswell and Boody kept the assessment work up for a number of years and finally let it go back to the government.
From the above it seems that Bark maintained some interest (At least he filed an Affidavit of Improvement) until the end of 1897. It might be a good guess to think that this was also about the time that Chuning gave up on the prospect and returned to prospecting?

It seems to me that we can probably account for Chuning's activities from about 1892 until the beginning of 1898. He seems to have been closely associated with Bark through these years with the possible exception of the year (1893?) that Bark said John prospected after working on the ranch water sources and the stone granary. Even in that period, he was probably in contact with Bark from time to time.

Joe,

Just wanted to check if your still reading! You seemed to imply that the headquarters that Chuning used for his search might be important in indicating where Chuning thought the lost mine was. Dr. Glover states that Chuning used the Bark ranch. I can't see any significance to this at all. Why wouldn't he use the Bark ranch as headquarters? He worked for Bark. Even if he was looking for the mine 15 miles away on the Salt River. It seemed to me that many Dutch Hunter's used the Bark and Barkley ranch as their headquarters. Any place in the Superstition range, they were only a day or two travel from Barks? Bark hoofed it from the Salt River claim to his ranch in one day and according to Ely, he had tender feet!

Garry
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Fitting in the Johnny Ayers' Story

Post by novice »

When Chuning gave up on the DEFENDER GOLD MINE and decided to continue his search for the Lost Dutchman, we might not be too far afield to assume that Bark continued to provide some financial support for Chuning until he collected on the Ayers' note. Bark relates that after he collected the $600 dollars, "From then "on" he [Chuning] would not take a dollar from me. He continued to hunt for the mine, and still made the ranch his headquarters." The date of the newspaper article recording Ayers' death was April 7, 1899.

Since it appears that Bark also gave up on the DEFENDER mine shortly after Chuning, perhaps we can narrow down the time period by looking at Bark's activities?

Bark was certainly interested in mining but it appears he was no less interested in politics. He served in various positions in the Republican Party in Maricopa County, beginning at least as early as 1894. From newspaper accounts it appears that he ran for his first elected office in 1898. He was the Republican candidate running for Sheriff of Maricopa County against the incumbent Democrat, Murray. The campaign was being wage aggressively in the fall of 1898. It seems clear that Bark had certainly moved on from the mining activity on the Salt River by this time and it was probably even earlier given the preparations required.

SIDEBAR:
The Arizona Republican published a story on November 8, 1898 in which it provided a glowing testimony of Bark and delivered a scathing attack on the Democrat Murray accusing him of various offences.

Bark lost the election; 1702 votes for Murray vs 1693 votes for Bark. Bark filed suit to have the election overturned and a recount was ordered. Murray won the recount 1672 to 1640.

Another hint as to Chuning's activities is this period come again from the Bark Notes. "Whenever John ran out of money, he would quit hunting and go to work generally for Bill Kimball, who kept a hotel and livery stable in Mesa. John would take care of the livery part of it, and he was a number one worker. Kimball told me that he was always glad to get him."

William Kimball died January 20, 1906. The Arizona Republican of January 21st carried his obituary. One item it related concerned his hotel. "Mr. Kimball gave to Mesa the first hotel, a beautiful two-story building, and as a hostelry it became famous throughout the land. It was destroyed by fire, a severe blow financially, and he has never been able since to rebuild."

We have been unable to date this fire exactly as some of the newspapers are missing from the database when it apparently occurred. We do have an article on April 18, 1900 which states among other things that "W. A. Kimball has been under a terrible feeling of hopelessness since the loss by fire of his hotel. But already his undaunted courage and iron constitution is getting the uppermost of his unfortunate condition and he is able to appear more like himself. Mr. Kimball feels he has lost the savings of a lifetime....."

To fit in Chuning working for Kimball, it appears that this activity would have been after his involvement with the DEFENDER GOLD MINE and obviously before the fire. A guess as to the timeframe when John would have worked for Kimball would be sometime between 1897 and April of 1900. It's hard to pinpoint the date/dates and given the rest of the stories, it's even hard to chose a time when John would have had the need or time to work for Kimball but I suspect Bark's story has some truth to it.

It seems Chuning continued to prospect and use the Bark ranch as his headquarters.(1898-1900). After Bark collected the Ayers' note Chuning had his own grub stake at least for a while. We find Chuning living at the Bark ranch in the 1900 census taken on June 24, 1900, with Bark's foreman Elmer Boody. He was listed as a miner.

It is tempting to pick up on the Kollenborn article (Zentull's Reference) in which he suggests; "In the Fall of 1898, John Chuning settled in a cave in La Barge Canyon below the Lower Box. He lived in this cave off and on for six years." This would have been a semi-permanent camp and could very well fit within the constraints of the events. Since we have no source for the story, I would only offer it as food for thought.

It seems not too far fetched to assume that Chuning's involvement with Ayers preceded his activities with Bark (1892-1899). This would put Chuning in northern Arizona sometime before 1892. His sojourn with Ayers was probably not a short one. He agreed to work for Bark for $2 a day and board doing similar work to that which he performed for Ayers. A $400 note would indicate that he was in the northern Arizona area for perhaps the better part of a year. (1891?) Since he wasn't paid in full, he was probably about broke when he arrived back in the Superstition area and still needed a job.

We might "guess" he looked for Deering's mine earlier (Late 1880's) after leaving the Silver King (1888?). Both Bark and Ely hint that he did.

These dates are certainly speculation at this time and it is puzzling why he would go to northern Arizona if he wanted to look for the Deering Mine. What took him to the Grand Canyon Area? Seems like a long ways from the Silver King and the Superstitions.

Garry
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Post by zentull »

The partnership of Ely and Bark began in the Salt River time frame. Most likely at the time Bark pulled out. Ely begins this partnership in 1895-6. It seems Chuning drifted a bit more from haven to haven after that. It fits with his wanting to keep busy. The Ely/Bark partnership is one of the stronger and longer lasting ones and may have changed the parameters of the relationship of the Bark/Chuning hunt. Barks involvement with Chuning after this point is somewhat different.
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John Chunning

Post by late49er »

Perhaps the shortest trail to the mine for Chunning was through Southern Nevada and Northern Arizona.

Perhaps Dearing said something to Chunning, something very importent that lead him there.

Returning to the Superstitions Chunning may have well been herded from one site to another. Always believing he was the trail master. Some one who owned a ranch would allow Chunning to think this.


Regards,


Late 49er
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Chuning & Bark (1900-1902)

Post by novice »

Zentull offers an interesting observation about the relationship between Bark and Chuning and that of Bark and Ely. I believe that he is most likely correct except I would place this transition much later. It seems to me Bark remained allied with Chuning well after 1900 and his association with Ely blossomed after 1900. The "transition" might have been in the 1902-1903, timeframe?

Although Bark and Ely met in the 1895-1896 timeframe, they apparently did not become associates in the search for the Lost Dutchman until much later. I also think the documents tend to support a close relationship between Bark and Chuning at least until 1902. What I gather from the newspaper articles is, that about this time, Bark was slowly becoming more closely associated with the city scene and was weaning himself from the actual labor involved in ranching and mining.

We know that in April of 1900 Bark departed for Nome, Alaska and the new strikes in that area. He had planned to spend the summer and perhaps the winter in Alaska. It is not clear when he returned from Alaska but the first mention I have found in the Arizona Republican was on December 18, 1900 when he was appointed delegate to the Livestock Association.

Chuning was living with Elmer Boody in June of 1900 on the Bark ranch (First Water?) and by the end of 1901 we find Chuning filing his WORSER Claim near the Indian Paint mine. Even though Bark was apparently not grub staking John by then, he did name Bark as one of the locators on the WORSER CLAIM.

The Kollenborn story relates that there was an association between Chuning and Silverlock. "He [Chuning] worked occasionally for Carl A. Silverlocke at the Indian Paint Mine at Red Pass between Boulder and La Barge Canyons."

From Bark's account of Silverlock and Malhm we find some additional evidence for at least an acquaintance between Chuning and Silverlock and Malhm.

Bark Notes:
"One night Malhm came to our camp, woke us both up (John Chuning was there). was very much excited and wanted us to go back to his camp with him (Silverlock was away). Malhm's legs were full of cactus thorns, and altogether he was a very frightened man. He said that over in the second draw from his camp, there was a large party of Indians, squaws and bucks, and they were yelling, fighting and shooting, and he was satisfied that there had been a number of them killed. After we talked to him awhile, he calmed down, and we go him to stay all night with us."

Silverlock and Maln show up in the 1900 census and they are enumerated a few houses from where Boody and Chuning were living. Bark had a bunk house near First Water? and this may be where Chuning was when the census was taken? Possibly First Water was his "headquarters", at least by 1900.

It is difficult to dovetail the details of the Kollenborn account and the Bark account but we would suspect these events occurred in the early 1900s.

From the Sims Ely book, he writes;
When I moved with my family to Arizona in the middle nineties one of the first men I met was Jim Bark, then serving as the first president of the Arizona Cattle growers' Association. My job was to be local manager of a water storage project designed to provide supplementary irrigation for ranches in the Salt River Valley—a project which developed into the present Roosevelt Dam and Reservoir. Jim was just as interested as I in protecting the watersheds of Arizona from the destructive erosion of unrestricted runoffs, and we were soon well acquainted..........

As for the truly important qualities, in addition to the natural vigor and resolution, he had a heartiness of temperament that was infectious, and he won all our hearts. Soon the Children were calling him Uncle Jim, as they still do today, and he married my wife's dearest friend in Phoenix, Mrs. Lena Sears. Jim courted her in our house.

It was during that courtship, in fact, that Jim first talked to me about the Lost Dutchman Goldmine and invited me to become his partner in search—an association which was to enhance, of course, the ties that were already strong between us.
In attempting to place the time of the conversation between Bark and Ely in which they became partners to search for the Lost Dutchman, we know that Jim Bark and Lena "Cox" Sears were married November 24, 1902. Just how long they had been "courting" is unknown. Lena Cox had married Winthrop Sears November 25, 1886 and he died August 28, 1895 in Maricopa County. When she and Jim married she was 36 and he was 41. It would seem that this "courtship" may have occurred after Bark returned from Alaska (1901-1902)?

I would place the Ely-Bark partnership (hobby of hunting the Lost Dutchman) as beginning in about 1902 and the direct involvement between Bark and Chuning as ending about 1903, after his marriage to Lena Sears.

Garry
Joe Ribaudo
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Bark/Sears

Post by Joe Ribaudo »

Garry,

Nice job!

I doubt you will be able to tie the Bark/Sears marraige time frame into the date of the Ely/Bark partnership, much closer than you have. Niether
Bark nor Ely make many comments concerning the couple and specific dates.

Without a doubt, Bark married up here. Lena Sears and Helen Ely were traveling in rarefied air in Phoenix. Bark arrived in Arizona without any money, and while he was moving up the social ladder at a fast pace, I would guess that his real success came after Lena planted his feet in the right places.

Not hard to explain Bark's move into a Phoenix home from the "ranch",
but it also may have had something to do with a favorite phobia of Peter's. While at the ranch, Bark had a spider get in his ear and blite him very close to the eardrum. Caused him to go, somewhat deaf and near blind for awhile.

The marraige to Lena (Cox) Sears was a complete surprise to the community and even their closest friends. Unusual for that era and especially unusual for their "Country Club" circle of friends. Makes one wonder at the timing for the birth of their first child. 8O

As was usual, for the time and place, their were many close family ties in the couples financial dealings. The incorporatiion of the Hasayamp Placer Mining Co., on April 17, 1906 included: Frank Cox, J. E. Bark, James Burson, Sims Ely and F.W. Bark.

The Bark's also had land dealing with D. Conner, I assume Daniel, around March of 1907.

I believe land sales became Bark's main source of income after his ranching days came to a close.

Nice piece of research, Garry. Thank God for the Arizona Republic.

Respectfully,

Joe
Last edited by Joe Ribaudo on Sun Jun 11, 2006 1:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Roger
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Bowen's Search Pre-dates Chunning Search

Post by Roger »

There is a somewhat lengthy article in the Arizona Daily Star dated June 27, 1893, which includes the following:

"Robert Bowen, of Tempe, one of the pioneer miners in Arizona, having been at the Silver King in early days, says he spent three months, thirteen years ago, looking for the treasure of the Superstitions, but in vain."

Thirteen years earlier than the article would have been 1880 which predates Deering's death in 1885. As most will remember, Bowen was at the Silver King when the Two Soldiers showed their gold ore to Aaron Mason. One must assume he based this earlier search in the Supers on the Two Soldiers story. Chuning said he did not start searching for the Deering mine until 7 yrs after Deering's death which would have been in 1892. Also interesting, Bowen was the foreman that hired Deering to work in the Silver King under John Chuning who was the shift boss.

Roger
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Chuning before 1892?

Post by novice »

Roger,

Thanks for the newspaper article reference regarding Robert Bowen. Couldn't have very well been following Deerings clues could he? Good food for thought. It might be worthwhile to research Deering, Green, Gromely, Bowen, Ayers, Mason, Silver King Mine, etc. to help bring into focus the pre 1892 activities of Chuning.

I'm still wrestling with when John Chuning started his search for the Deering mine. You write that he began in 1892. Can you share a source for that if it is something other than the Bark Notes? To me the Notes are not very convincing? My notes have the notation (correction seems to say 1892). I not at all sure these are Bark's words but perhaps a later transcriber trying to make them follow Bark's purchase of the ranch in the Superstitions?

Joe,

I suspect the courtship of Bark and Lena Sears was very Victorian. I do not know when the baby was born or whether it was a girl or boy or when they lost the child. Aurum may have shared some additional information on this previously?

The only hint that I have found involves your reference to the article about the spider bite.

Arizona Republican July 20, 1905;
Hon. James E. Bark left last night for the coast where he will join Mrs. Bark and the baby. the family will not return to Phoenix until fall. Mr. Bark will spend a month at Lake Tahoe. He returned day before yesterday from his cattle ranch in Superstition mountains. On his arrival in town he was not sure that he would not lose the sight of the left eye and the hearing of the left ear.................
The usage of the term baby as opposed to child, son or daughter might provide some indication of age? It gives me no reason to suspect there was anything out of the ordinary about the timing of the birth of the child. The child had died by the 1910 census. The thing that is somewhat puzzling is that Lena said she had one child and it was no longer living. It seems she had a child earlier with Winthrop Sears.

As for Bark "traveling in rarified air" after his marriage. I know previously it has been stated that the Cox-Sears families were well to do and I suspect that is correct but I'm not sure how much Lena herself brought to the table when they were married. In the 1900 Census of Maricopa County we find Lena working as a copyist. She is listed as the head of the household with a son Earl Sears, who was 10 years old and her brother-in-law and sister, George and Ora Spangler. George was a blacksmith. Lena did own her home free of mortgage and she was living at 482 North 5th Avenue a few doors from Sims Ely who was renting a house at 402 North 5th Avenue. I have been unable to locate Earl Sears and I don't know what happened to him?

If someone was marrying for money, I'm not sure which party it was?

Garry
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