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The Klondike: Eldorado Creek, 1898

The Klondike: Eldorado Creek, 1898

Klondike Gold Rush

The Klondike News,
Dawson, N.W.T., April 1st, 1898

Antone F. Standard.

    GREAT is Eldorado! Bonanza, Hunker and Dominion, are also great, and cover many miles of gravel beds, but the five miles of Eldorado contain more wealth than all of these combined.

    The history of the world does not show such an auriferous strata of gravel as that contained in Eldorado Creek.

    The whole Cassiar country during the entire time it was worked did not produce more than half the amount of gold that will come from Eldorado this year. The richer districts of California in her palmy days could show nothing like this golden stream. The wildest imagination of ancient and modern dreamers pictured nothing to equal it. From the time of Pactolean streams running over beds of pure gold, to the fabled Isle of Monte Christo, the mind of man has been unable to conjure up a vision that will equal the reality of Eldorado today. It gives employment to one thousand men and pays out in wages more than a half million dollars per month. It will yield independent fortunes to several hundred men by the present system of working and fabulous amounts when reworked by modern improved methods.

    And the question now naturally arises who discovered this wonderful stream; who took the first pan of dirt out, and who found the first nugget?

    The newspapers of last year were filled to overflowing with the records and richness of the men of the Klondike; every one has read or heard of the names of Berry, Physcater, Kellar, Clemens, Bowker, Lippy and the others who startled the world last July by the exhibition of huge piles of dust and nuggets, and their stories of the northern lands of gold.

    Few there are, though, who have heard the name of Antone F. Standard, and yet to him, more than all others, is due the credit of uncovering these tons of gold.

    It was the last day in the month of August 1896, that Antone Standard and four companions made their way up Bonanza creek and camped at the mouth of Eldorado. Mr. Standard's companions were Whipple, Clemens, Kellar and Physcater, and the five men were somewhat discouraged. They were almost entirely out of grub, and their dinner on the first day of September consisting of slap jacks, bacon and tea, exhausted the bacon in the party, and made sad inroads on their flour. After dinner they wandered up the Right Fork of Bonanza creek to what is now known as Eldorado, in rather an aimless way, knowing that they had to return to Forty Mile almost immediately for provisions.

    Mr. Standard, in company with Frank Kellar, commenced digging on what is now known as No, 2 Eldorado, where they were joined by the rest of the party.

    Standard was busily engaged in digging through the muck, and although urged to leave by some of the others, replied: "that he would stay at least until he could take a pan of gravel."

    Mr. Whipple, who located claim No. 1, became quite impatient and a quarrel almost arose; at last Antone Standard's hot southern blood arose and he proceeded to declare himself by saying, "If you fellows don't like what I'm doing, go on about your business; there's plenty of room in this country." By this time, however, the young miner had reached the gravel and the first pan yielded a small amount of gold. The second was even better, and the third proved conclusively that good diggings had been struck. Then the entire party staked their claims, Mr. Whipple taking No, 1, Physcater No. 2, Clemens No. 4, Kellar No. 5, and Standard No. 6.

    The claim now known as No. 3 was held as Discovery claim and was afterwards jumped by K. Halstead. The party then went to Forty Mile Post to obtain provisions.

    Mr. Standard, who was a stranger in Forty Mile, without money and without friends, found it quite difficult, and in fact impossible at that time to obtain sufficient provisions to carry him through the winter. He knew that his claim on Eldorado was very rich, and was more than anxious to put in his time there during the winter. In his dilemma he approached a bar-keeper by the name of Clarence Berry for assistance,

    The saloon man was the owner of claim No. 40 above Discovery on Bonanza creek, then supposed to be of little value, and Mr. Standard proposed to trade a half interest in his Eldorado claim, for a half the Bonanza claim, provided, that Berry would "stand good" at the store for a small outfit. This proposition was accepted and the rapid development of Eldorado from that time on is a matter of history.

    The two men afterwards bought a controling interest in Nos. 4 and 5 Eldorado, and are full partners in these three wonderful claims yet.

    The first boat that went down the river that summer carried away Mr. Standard's four former companions, as well as his present partner. And while their names were in every one's mouth and their wealth the nine days wonder of the year, Mr. Standard, with as much or more than any of them, remained quietly at home.

    His innate modesty would have prevented him in the first place from making any exhibition of his newly-found wealth had he accompanied his friends, and his business sagacity taught him that he could well afford to stay another year in the North to make sure of the fortune almost in his grasp.

    This is why the name of Standard has seldom been heard outside of Dawson, and perhaps explains why the group of claims in which he owns the largest share are oftimes called "the Berry Claims."

    Antone Standard was not born with a gold spoon in his mouth, and has often looked upon the seamy side of life. He has herded cattle, dug coal and sustained himself for years with his two hands.

    In the past ten years he has visited almost every one of the United States in his restless search for fortune, and the Antone of to-day despite the millions at his command is the same Antone of the past.

    Quiet, unassuming, soft-spoken and polite, the young millionaire goes about his business unaffectedly glad to see an old friend and ever ready to help a former companion when in need.

    In all that great land of sudden fortune there is no one more deserving of the blessings of wealth nor less envied in its possession than this young miner.

    Antone F. Standard was born June 16th, 1867, in the Province Unterkrien, District of Litte, in Austria. At the age of twenty he left his native home and landed in New York City with $1.75 in his pocket. Unable to speak one word of English and totally unacquainted, he resolutely set out to find employment, and journeyed on foot half way across the continent to Johnston, Ohio. From there he went to Brown's Park, Colorado.

    Herding sheep, rounding up cattle and digging coal, he put in his time for several years picking up dollars and acquiring an education. That he has picked up many dollars every one knows, and it is greatly to his credit to say that he is more than ordinarily well educated at the present time, and speaks the English language fluently and with little foreign accent.

    At one time in his career he was the proud owner of a hundred and sixty acres of Colorado real estate in the shape of a side-hill farm, but the life of a farmer was too slow for this restless spirit, and he did not continue at this vocation very long.

    It was about at this time that the young Austrian took the gold fever in a violent form and struck out for the North.

    His adventures on the road differ only from the many others who have made the trip, in that they were more varied and somewhat more disastrous.

    At one period he found himself standing on the bank of a river watching his boat disappear down the rapid current, with the prospects of snow balls for supper and spruce boughs for a bed; and the prospects were fully realized.

    Now, however, with an abundance of wealth he can well afford and does laugh at the hardships of the past.

    The Standard residence is a neat log cabin on the side of the snow-shrouded Eldorado hills overlooking his little garden patch of gold, and where each day he pans enough golden nuggets to pay off all his help.

    On the dumps there is a perfect glisten of gold in the sand and gravel and in places it seems almost as plentiful as the sand. There is a strong force of men working on the claims and this year's clean-up will amount to one million dollars. At one time Mr, Standard was offered a million and a half dollars for his holdings on Eldorado, but he very wisely refused, for after extracting that sum from these claims by the present mode of working, large companies with improved modern machinery will take out as much or more from the gravel now supposed to be worked out.

    The claims in which Mr. Standard are interested are Nos, 4, 5 and 6 Eldorado and No. 40 Bonanza. The latter claim, by the way, is one of the very best of the many good Bonanza claims, and is yielding handsomely.

    There is a romance too, in the life of this young Austrian, for it was the love of a beautiful woman that was partly responsible for sending him into the unknown North.

    It was while he was still poor that he first met Miss Violet Raymond, an actress, and, dressed as he was in the rough garb of the country and with few dollars in his pockets, his suit did not progress as rapidly as it might, for she was the undisputed belle of the camp and could number her admirers by the score.

    But after the summer's wash-up in 1897, he made a master stroke; he purchased all the diamonds in the camp and presented them to the lady. This proved that his judgment of woman's weakness [there are blank spots for the next few inches of the printed page, marked here by "..."] ...
and from that time a ...race for beauty, and soon ...

    Mr Standard has ...ed his fiancee with twenty ... dust, to say nothing of such little things as a lard bucket full of odd-shaped nuggets.

    They will join hearts and hands in July and spend their honeymoon in the Orient, visiting Japan and China, and will return to the little brown cot on the hill before making a trip to Paris to the Exposition.

    May your voyage down the stream of life be one of happiness and pleasure, and may your future forever be as prosperous as your short stay on Eldorado has been, is the wishes of THE KLONDIKE NEWS.

Miss Violet Raymond
    Bride Elect to Millions.

    EVERY patron of the playhouse on the Pacific Coast will remember Violet Raymond, ... Vaudeville fame as one of the ... Maud and Violet
thousands with the...
dancing and perfect acting...
Raymond three years ago accepted an engagement in Juneau, where she was a great favorite and broke all records in the Juneau Opera House by holding her engagement for two years. At the expiration of that time she was engaged at an enormous salary as the leading attraction in a big opera company then en route for Dawson. At that time only a few ladies had undertaken to cross the perilous Chilcoot Pass. Early in the spring of '97 Miss Raymond, in company with a dozen other performers, in a big scow began the descent of the river amidst big floating icebergs that...
to wreck the frail craft at every...
Windy Arm when a high sea...
and strong men paled before the mighty storm, Miss Raymond sat as cool and composed as if in a comfortable arm chair in some quiet parlor. She shot the White Horse Rapids, a raging torrent where hundreds of brave prospectors had lost their lives, without betraying the least sign of fear. Some one has said that "fortune favors the brave," such is the case of this fearless little actress. She made her debut in Dawson among a shower of nuggets and a storm of applause. Then Antone Standard fell in love with her charming manners. He wooed and won, and when the floating palace, "Mary Ellen Galvin" makes her first trip from Dawson this year the happy couple will start on their wedding tour. When the steamer's whistle indicates that the boat has erossed the Canadian line, the wedding bells will ring out and on Uncle Sam's domain Antone F. Standard and Miss Violet Raymond will be made man and wife.