This section is from the book "Hill's Manual Of Social And Business Forms: A Guide To Correct Writing", by Thos. E. Hill. Also available from Amazon: Hill's Manual Of Social And Business Forms: The How-To-Do-Everything Book Of Victorian America.
THE PERSON who proposes to visit a mining region with a view to prospecting, discovering, and extracting from the earth precious metals, should first study the geography of the country in which he expects to operate.
Second, he should read all available matter relating to the region and the subject of mining.
Third, he should, if possible, make the acquaintance of those who have traveled in that portion of the country, and thus avail himself of their experience.
Fourth, he should then proceed to a "School of Mines," one or more of which may usually be found in the immediate vicinity of all rich mining regions, and there spend a few days or weeks in receiving instruction from competent instructors as to the means by which rich ores may be known when found, methods of testing ores, processes of reduction, assaying, smelting, taking out of ore, and much other useful information which will be of service to the prospector.
Experience has shown that a company of three, each provided with a mule or small horse, if this convenience can be afforded, make the number best calculated to prospect together, especially in the mountainous regions of America, the advantage of this number being that while one cares for baggage, mules, washing, cooking, etc., the others are free to engage in exploration.
Having found, outside of property owned by anybody else, evidence of mineral in such quantity and richness as to make it desirable to locate a claim, the miner will proceed to stake off the amount of land to which he is entitled by law, on each side of the nearest place where he intends to sink an opening into the earth in search of ore.
The law of most of the mining regions in the Rocky Mountains permits the miner to claim 750 feet in each direction from the discovery shaft in the line that the vein of ore is supposed to run, and 150 feet on each side, so that when the claim is staked off it will be in shape as follows:
The law of different mining localities is liable to change, however, so that it may be necessary for the miner to provide himself with the various pocket manuals containing the law of his locality in order to know how much land he is actually entitled to claim, as the law frequently differs in different portions of a State.
A prospector, holding a discovery claim, is allowed sixty days in which to sink his discovery shaft the distance of ten feet. At the place where the discovery of a vein has been made, it is customary to post a notice in substance as follows:
The undersigned claim sixty days to sink discovery shaft and three months to record on this vein. May 6, 1880.
FRANKLIN ALLEN, WALTER B. SMITH, JOHN JOHNSON,
This notice is not a necessity, but simply a warning to other prospectors that the vein is to be claimed. The sixty days begin when the vein is discovered, and cannot be extended beyond that number.
Having sunk his discovery shaft to a depth of ten feet, the miner should, if possible, procure the services of a surveyor, who will make a competent and lawful survey. But even without a surveyor the claim, if definitely marked off by stakes driven into the ground, or supported by a pile of stone around each, will be sufficiently well defined to enable a record to be made of the same
Having sunk a discovery shaft, and having an accurate description by a surveyor or otherwise, the next step is to have a record made of the same in the recorder's office of that county as follows:
Know All Men by These Presents, That we, Franklin Allen, Walter B. Smith and John Johnson, of the county of Clear Creek, State of Colorado, claim by right of discovery and location fifteen hundred feet linear and horizontal measurement, on the Coming Day lode, along the vein thereof, with all its dips, variations and angles; together with one hundred and fifty feet in width on each side of the middle of said vein at the surface; and all veins, lodes, ledges, deposits and surface ground within the lines of said claim; seven hundred and fifty feet on said lode, running east fifteen degrees north from the center of the discovery shaft, and seven hundred and fifty feet running west fifteen degrees south from said center of discovery shaft.
Said claim is on the eastern slope of Democrat mountain, in Griffith mining district, county of Clear Creek, State of Colorado, and is bounded and described as follows: Beginning at corner No. 1, from which deep shaft on Famine lode bears west three degrees, south 180 feet, and chiseled on prominent ledge of rock, bears east twenty degrees, north 290 feet, and running thence west fifteen degrees, north 750 feet to east center stake, thence same course 750 feet to corner No. 2; thence (etc., going all around the claim in the same manner). Discovery shaft bears west forty-nine degrees, north 100 feet from corner No. 1 of survey lot No. 777.
Said lode was discovered on the 6th day of May, 1882. Date of location, July 15, 1882. Date of this certificate, August 6, 1882.
WALTER B. SMITH,
Attest: Francis French. JOHN JOHNSON.
The law makes it necessary that at least Five Hundred Dollars' worth of labor shall be performed upon the claim before a patent will be granted by the government to the person who may desire to buy the land, and of this labor at least One Hundred Dollars' worth shall be done each year in order to hold the claim.
Where annual labor is performed for the purpose of holding a claim, affidavit must be made of that fact before a legally constituted authority, as shown in the following:
State oF Colorado, County of Clear Creek, ss.
Before me, the subscriber, personally appeared Franklin Allen, Walter B. Smith, and John Johnson, who, being duly sworn, say that at least one hundred dollars' worth of labor or improvement was done or made upon the Coming-Day lode, situate on Democrat mountain, in the Griffith mining district, county of Clear Creek, State of Colorado. Said expenditure was made by or at the expense of Frederick Allen, Walter B. Smith and John Johnson, principal owners of said claim, for the purpose of holding said claim for the annual period expiring on the thirtieth day of June, A. D. 1881.