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“Some to be sure have acquired fortunes in a short time, having struck a rich lead, but more are to-day working for their board. Parties are anxious to prospect further east, but the hostilities of the Indians prevent people from scattering. Should the Indians be well whipped, as there is hopes at present, I think many new and important discoveries may be made.
“The silver mines are considered by all to be far the more reliable. A gold mine is sometimes worked out in a short time, while a silver lead is a life estate. There are the Mowry,
. Patagonia, Eagle, San Pedro, Empire or Montezuma, Santa Rita and Mariposa, which were before the war worked to considerable extent, and there is now hope of their again thriving, providing they can have the necessary protection against the Indians.
“Provisions are, at present, very high; while in the mines flour was worth 35¢ per pound, and everything in proportion. Here flour brings 25¢, bacon 60¢, sugar $1.00, beans 50¢, etc., etc. Flour is, I learn, selling in the mines for $50 per 100#.
“There are extensive and good farming districts hereabouts and people anxious to work them, but there is no safety for a man outside of the town limits. Hence the exorbitant price of provisions.
“The following letters I received before leaving Fort Whipple: Rebecca's of Sept. 27th/63; yours of Oct. 12th from New York. Yours of Nov. 18th/63, covering dft. Leelyard & Fralick on Metro. Bank for $50, for which receive my thanks. Rebecca's of Oct. 12/63. Yours from Washington Dec. 10th, New York Dec. 21/63, and Mary's from N. Y. Dec. 30th. Those with the two received at Santa Fe, are the only epistles which have come to hand since leaving home.
“The Gov. is expected here tomorrow, when a location for the capital will probably be determined. Everything is behind. The Judge has, as yet, no power to act, which of course prevents me.
“I think I shall be able to make my expenses the first year from my fees, probably more. I think that if I have time to look around I might get hold of some silver mine, still I do not think mine, or even the judgment of the Judge, would warrant a move in the matter, still, should you feel like placing capital at my command, say $1500 or $2000 for prospecting and opening a mine, I will put my best foot forward to the work.
“If Uncle Fred would like to come out here, let him come. Not on my say, however, for I
, never shall advise any person to come on this coast. Not that I have anything against the country, climate (the finest in the world), or people, but many coming by the advice of others get discouraged and blame their advisers. I have undertaken the trip, am located, and am satisfied (that's a big word for me). If he should conclude to come, my advice as to route I fear, is poor. By stage from Kansas City via Santa Fe to Mesilla on the Rio Grande, 300 miles from here. He could come in about eighteen days at an expense of at least $200, and 40¢ # for baggage over 50#.
“From Mesilla he would have to wait until some train was coming through, or buy a good horse and come through with the military express. Should a party of ten, fifteen or twenty wish to emigrate, the following would be my advice: Purchase two, three or four light wagons or ambulances, cost say $250, eight or ten good mules, not under six years of age, load your wagons light, say eight or ten hundred pounds. The following articles I think in the way of provisions advisable to bring for use only: Flour, bacon, coffee, tea, sugar, beans, dried apples and peaches, butter, a barrel of crackers, eight or ten doz. boxes yeast powders (an overplus would readily sell here at good advance), rice, hominy, lard, keg of molasses, matches, powder, and what assortment of can fruits you think necessary. Grain for animals can be purchased at different points on the road. A little
A should be kept on hand, and as your provisions are lightened, fill up with grain. A few water kegs for making dry camps should be slung under the wagons." (Letter incomplete.) “Tucson, Arizona Territory,
“April 20th, 1864. “My dear Father & Mother:
“I recd. yours of Feby. 13th by yesterday's mail from Fort Whipple. I have also by same mail letter from Charley Weaver (Ray) forwarded by you. You make many inquiries to which I cannot, as yet, make decided answers, the capital not being located, the movement and stationing of troops not being complete, and the country being altogether in an unsettled condition. We hope within six months to be able to give an entirely different account of affairs, for the Gov. and his officials are working with all their might to bring order out of confusion. However, shall give it to you as my opinion which the Judge, will I guess, endorse:
“This territory is rich in minerals, probably by developing will prove to be the richest in the world. Gold, silver and copper are to be found upon prospecting, in all sections of the country.
"Sylvester Mowry, Esq., President and principal stockholder of the Patagonia Mining Co., kas a copy of a map drawn in 1757. The original was presented by the Society of Jesuits to the King of Spain.
“The reports of the immense mineral wealth of the new country made by the Jesuits induced a rapid settlement. There are laid down on the map more than forty towns and villages. There were a few north of the Gila River, and several on the lower Gila near the Colorado. The Santa Cruz and its tributaries and valleys teemed with an agricultural and mining population (Spanish). Thousands cultivated the rich valley of the San Pedro, and scattered settlements flourished at every suitable stream and spring at the foot of the mountains towards the Rio Grande.
“In the western part of the Territory were the missions of St. Pierre, St. Paul, St. Matthias, and others. On the Santa Cruz the missions of San Xavier del Bac, and Santiago, the towns of Tucson, Tubac, and many others.
“At San Xavier, nine miles from here up the Santa Cruz, stands the mission church of San Xavier (some two hundred years old). It is of great size, built entirely of brick, and is magnificently ornamented within. Forty thousand dol
lars in solid silver still adorn the altar. The church is surrounded by a Pagago Indian village, a few tame Apaches, and a few whites also live under the shadow of its towers. Judge Howell went down to visit the church soon after his arrival here, but I have not yet had an opportunity. Two years ago a cross of solid gold, six feet high, weighing five tons, was taken from its altar down into Mexico. There are evidences everywhere about corroborating the strange traditions of the country.
“Most of the mines which are about to commence operations below here, Patagonia, Santa Rita, Mariposa, and others, were first opened by the Spaniards many years ago, and deserted on account of the Indians. There are many men here in town who have silver lodes (or veins) but have not the capital to open and prospect thoroughly. These claims may be purchased from $400 to $1,000 each, provided upon opening they would pay to work. The gold mines lay north on the headwaters of the San Francisco and tributaries. They are rich but the scarcity of water has prevented a thorough development. There are, I understand, several quartz mills en route from California.
“Provisions are at present so very high that more mining companies do not commence operations. Mr. Hopkins, Agt., for the Copper Mining Co., is here, but will not commence operations at present on account of the exorbitant prices of provisions: flour 25¢; coffee $1.00; tea $2.00; beans 30¢; eggs $1,00; lard $1.50; bacon $1.00, and everything in proportion. People cannot make anything in even a rich country where it costs so much to barely