Marker Logo HMdb.org THE HISTORICAL
MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Virginia City in Madison County, Montana — The American West (Mountains)
 

The Mount Vernon Dredge

 
 
The Mount Vernon Dredge Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, August 6, 2009
1. The Mount Vernon Dredge Marker
Inscription. In its first five years, Alder Gulch produced between 30 and 60 million in gold. By 1874 about 35,000 people lived in the gulch. Times ran out but the gold never did. You can still find it here in the hills and streams of Alder Gulch.

There were 5 dredges working this stream at one time. They ranged in size fro a No. 2 to a No. 16, the world’s largest dredge. They removed from 150 to 200 million dollars in gold. The Mount Vernon Dredge is a No. 2 dredge and was donated to the museum by Mr. Harold Lynch and Mr. Joe Gray in 1985. It worked Deadwood Gulch and Crooked River of Idaho.

The dredge was built at a cost of $37,350 in 1937. The bucket line has 65 two cubic foot buckets and digs 2,000 cubic yards per day. It has a digging depth of 20 ft and was powered by diesel electric generators. The gravel, which contains the free gold, is picked up in the buckets, dumped into a revolving screen, referred to as a trommel, where it is washed. Oversize gravel is dumped behind the boat with a conveyer belt, referred to as a stacker. The gold bearing gravel passes into riffled sluice boxes, then into a mercury trap before being discharged at the rear of the boat. On clean-up day the sluices are cleaned, the amalgam restored and sent to the smelter. The Chilean Wheel, sometimes called Chi Mill by Americans, was a superior crusher capable

The Mount Vernon Dredge image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, August 6, 2009
2. The Mount Vernon Dredge
The marker is below the bucket line.
of being powered by a water wheel. Its origin was the threshing floor of the ancient Middle East. The Chilean Wheel was not the best invention in the world but it had one important virtue, it could be cheaply erected almost anywhere and used animal or water power. The Chilean Wheels being displayed were donated to the museum by Lester and Mary Stiles. Nicholas Carey, Mary’s grandfather arrived here in the fall of 1863, after walking from Denver. Her grandmother, Mary Carey arrived in 1864 by wagon train. By Mary Carey’s directions the wheels were later located by Lester Stiles several miles up Browns Gulch.

The other mining relics on display throughout the grounds have been collected from numerous mining sights [sic] in Montana.
 
Location. 45° 18.316′ N, 111° 57.93′ W. Marker is near Virginia City, Montana, in Madison County. Marker is on Montana Highway 287 (State Highway 287). Touch for map. The Mount Vernon Dredge is located in Nevada City. MT. Nevada City, MT is located about 1.5 miles west of Virginia City, MT on Montana Highway 287. Marker is in this post office area: Virginia City MT 59755, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Madison County Pioneers (approx. 0.2 miles away); Nevada City (approx. 0.2 miles away);

The Mount Vernon Dredge - The Bucket Line image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, August 6, 2009
3. The Mount Vernon Dredge - The Bucket Line
Site of the Trial and Hanging of George Ives (approx. 0.2 miles away); Gallows Barn (approx. 0.2 miles away); Montana’s Oldest Standing School (approx. ¼ mile away); Finney House (approx. ¼ mile away); Boot Hill (approx. 1.1 miles away); Green Front Boarding House (approx. 1.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Virginia City.
 
Also see . . .  Virtual Tour of Gold Dredge #8 - Alaska Dreams. (Submitted on November 16, 2011, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California.)
 
Additional keywords. gold dredge
 
Categories. Industry & Commerce
 
The Mount Vernon Dredge - The Bucket Line image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, August 6, 2009
4. The Mount Vernon Dredge - The Bucket Line
The Mount Vernon Dredge - The Trommel and Riffle Boxes image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, August 6, 2009
5. The Mount Vernon Dredge - The Trommel and Riffle Boxes
The Mount Vernon Dredge - The Stacker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, August 6, 2009
6. The Mount Vernon Dredge - The Stacker
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on November 16, 2011, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. This page has been viewed 995 times since then and 48 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on November 16, 2011, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
Paid Advertisement