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  1. LIFE ON THE DIGGINGS. ROBBERS' EXCHANGE OF GUNS By C. R. C. PEARCE. The great army of diggers at Bendigo did an immense amount of work in an incredibly short space of time. Vast areas of ground were turned over to the bedrock and rifled of their treasures. Forests of great ironbark trees, with their dense underwood, quickly disappeared. So thick and dark were these forests that people had often lost their way in the daylight. After the winter of 1852 almost all the natural beauty of Bendigo had disappeared. Earth and clay reduced to a powder, lay on the roads ankle deep, and the slightest puff of wind raised it in blinding clouds. Mr. George Mackay, in his "Annals of Bendigo," relates that Mr. Joseph Crook, who afterwards lived in South Yarra, camped with three mates at the bottom of Long and Ironbark gullies in April, 1852. They lost a horse, and in searching for it in a dense ironbark forest they discovered a very rich gully, in which they picked up 9oz. of gold from the surface in two hours. In order to find their way back to this spot they cut marks in the trees when passing on their way to American Flat through California Gully. A rush to California Gully occurred on the following day (Sunday), and on Monday so much timber had been destroyed that Mr. Crook and his mates were unable to find the track. At a new rush diggers were shovelings up the gold between one an- other's legs, but Mr. Crook's party could not get within a mile and a half of the scene, as all the ground had been taken up. At Pegleg they got gold at 2ft. 6in., but not in large quantities. Thinking that they knew all about their claim they moved on. They were chagrined later to see men whom they regarded as new chums shovel up gold almost in bucketful's. Eluding Black Douglas Black Douglas and his gang were the terror of diggers when they were taking their gold from Bendigo to Melbourne in 1852. Mr. Crook, it is recorded in the "Annals of Bendigo," related how he chiselled four chambers 8in. by 3in. by 4in. in the bed of a dray, and after placing four chamois leather bags in the chambers covered them up with wooden lids and filled the crevices with clay. Mr. Crook and his party were not "stuck up" by Black Douglas, but a neighbouring camp of diggers was robbed at Carlsruhe on the night they were there. A successful digger, who had fortunately sent his gold to Melbourne by escort, was robbed on his way to Melbourne. The robbers took all his money with the exception of a few shillings. They also took his double-barrelled gun and gave him an old single-barrelled gun in exchange. The digger took this gun to England as a memento, and some time afterwards a young friend tried to draw the charge. The first thing he pulled out was portion of a 5 note. A blacksmith unscrewed the breech and took out notes amounting to 150. A man at the third White Hill valued his horse at 150, and he used to sleep with the bridle rein round his wrist. One morning he found that the rein had been cut and that the horse had been stolen. About three months afterwards he found the horse outside his tent with a new saddle on its back and 20lb. of gold in the saddle bag. The owner of the gold never appeared. Diggers when they entered a store to make purchases emptied the contents of their matchboxes, filled with gold dust, on to white paper on the counter. The store keeper blew the dust and put the rest in a fine sieve, afterwards paying for it. Mr. H. Brown, in "Victoria as I found It," says that he saw innumerable grains of gold in the dust on a counter and directed the attention of a storekeeper to the loss of gold. Laughing, the storekeeper brushed the gold off the counter with his sleeve, and said that the dust was worthless. It was only when alluvial gold became scarcer that this fine dust was saved. "The police have commenced their search for the licenses of gold diggers" wrote the Bendigo correspondent of "The Argus" on October 17, 1853. "They have dropped the musket and bayonet, and have taken to the baton." The principal objection of the diggers to the gold license was the method of collection. In the "Annals of Bendigo," it is recorded that some diggers were chained to logs for hours in the blazing sun. It is to the credit of the diggers that the first balls which they attended were held in aid of the foundation of hospitals. At the first diggers' ball in Bendigo, the "ladies numbered 60 or about one in ten to the gentlemen, and they did credit to the classes on the diggings. Despite the assurance of the committee that full dress would not be exacted a great number of the men were attired in garments that exhibited a gentlemanly taste. The scarcity of women dancers is reflected in the reports of other balls which followed at Forest Creek and Ballarat. At the Forest Creek ball 600 people were present, but there were only 100 women among the dancers. At a Christmas ball held in Bendigo in 1853 some of the dresses cost 10. The program ranged from the opening quadrille to Sir Roger de Coverley. New rushes were frequent in 1853 and 1854, but an exciting rush which occurred at Bendigo was not for gold, but for cabbages. An enterprising man brought from Brighton to Bendigo late in 1853 the first cartload of cabbages seen on that field. The cabbages were quickly sold at 3/6 each. Commenting on this "rush," the correspondent says "The promise of the surveyor-general to give every digger a cabbage-garden near the mines is hailed with gladness." How well the miners of Bendigo and Ballarat and other districts took advantage of the opportunity to grow vegetables, fruit, and flowers was shown in later years by the beautiful cottage gar- dens which adorned the mining towns. Though the price of flour was decreasing the bakers were charging 3/6 for the 4lb. loaf on the White Hills in 1853. Cats were in great demand on the Bendigo field. Good mouse cats brought from 2 to 3 each. Cricket at Back Creek The first cricket match in Bendigo took place on January 2, 1854, between the married and single members of the Bendigo Cricket Club. The bachelors were "shame- fully defeated," and the correspondent re- corded: "The wicket was pitched on a tolerably level piece of ground at Back Creek. In a spacious tent an excellent dinner was provided for the members of the club. The wines were excellent, and were pretty fully discussed, so that towards the close of day the meeting of cricketers wore anything but a dull aspect. Several gentlemen from the Camp, commissioners, and others visited the tent during the afternoon, and the best possible feeling was displayed toward them." On the Back Creek cricket-ground in later years Mr. George Mackay and Mr. Angus Mackay, sons of the recorder of this first match, gave an impetus to cricket on the Back Creek ground which resulted in the production of many fine players in Bendigo. Mr. R. Brough Smyth, in the "Goldfields and Mineral Districts of Victoria," re- corded that in 1858 147,358 adult miners, including 23,673 Chinese, were employed on the goldfields. In 1856 2,985,9910z. gold, valued at 4 an ounce (11,943,964), were exported. From the discovery of gold in 1851 to 1868 the amount of gold exported from Victoria was 147,342,767, and Mr. Brough Smith calculated the average for each man at 1,699/8/3, or 98/10/4 a year. "But these figures are not a true test of the success of individuals," he added. "The measure of success of the gold-mining industry must not be summed up by the exports. Immense sums were expended in the construction of roads, rail- ways, and other public works. Large towns, with fine buildings, good streets and parks, supplied with water from reservoirs of large extent, arose, so that no small share of the wealth the mines have yielded has been profitably used in turning a wilderness into a habitable abode." The Argus 1930 http://newspapers.nla.gov.au/ https://trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/4232417?searchTerm="Eluding Black Douglas"
  2. My video of a spot at the top end of West Australia. It might work. 😀
  3. Dirt Fish Mish tries out the Deus 2 in the Aussie gold fields along with Detect-ED friends using the Legend and Gold Kruzer. She finds her first nuggie........
  4. The way it was, a lot of photos. The quality and speed can be selected at setting icon. I turned the volume off when I watched it. At the 20 minute mark in the second video, it goes religious
  5. Due to Strychnine poisoning for dingo control in West Australia you have to watch out for your pet. Strychnine poisoning in animals occurs usually from ingestion of baits designed for use against rodents (especially gophers and moles) and coyotes. Rodent baits are commonly available over-the-counter, but coyote baits are illegal in the United States. However, since 1990 in the United States most baits containing strychnine have been replaced with zinc phosphide baits.[8] The most common domestic animal to be affected is the dog, either through accidental ingestion or intentional poisoning. The onset of symptoms is 10 to 120 minutes after ingestion.[9] Symptoms include seizures, a "sawhorse" stance, and opisthotonus (rigid extension of all four limbs). Death is usually secondary to respiratory paralysis. Treatment is by detoxification using activated charcoal, pentobarbital for the symptoms, and artificial respiration for apnea. This is one way to keep your pet safe. ..... Edit this is not my dog, but he is a beautiful model for this post.
  6. The passing of a friend unfortunately has led to me taking ownership of a modified Tdi Pro. My machine is mounted on an Anderson shaft and is factory spec. My old mate had his machine modified to smooth out the threshold and to add some sensitivity. The specifics related to the modifications are not known by me, other than that they were conducted by 'Luke'..Oz Digger.. This happened some time ago. So the modified machine is probably not a keeper, I don't want two Tdi Pro machines.. The opportunity to do a comparison cannot and should not be ignored. My intention is to focus on small gold performance, the threshold smoothness, the ability to use gain, basic performance and handling characteristics under different circumstances. The machines will use the same fully charged battery pack, same coil, same targets, same test location and conditions on the same day etc. Trying to minimise external variations. I'll start with the usual useless air test. Later I'll follow up with in ground testing on the actual goldfields in mineralized soil. Test coils will be with a small coil and a large coil. Targets will be gold only. The 1 grain ingot, the half gram gold coin, a half sovereign gold coin. Some real small sub gram nuggets to see how small we can go.. There is a process involved so I'll take my time and do it right. Any specific questions or suggestions, speak now or forever hold you peace.. I'm only doing this once. Once it sold it will be too late to revisit.. All the best.
  7. I don't go for most gold Youtube videos but if you got 20 minutes to spare watch this one that I found the link on another forum. That my type ground (New Ground).
  8. This is an interesting read about someone taking people out to some claims near Coolgardie for a few days to find gold and relics. https://www.farmweekly.com.au/story/7680225/prospectors-dig-for-gold/
  9. This is a list of Greater than 10 Tonne Gold found and recorded (a lot of early finds were not recorded) in Victoria Australia.
  10. The 'Berlin Rush' beginnings, August 1868 when Alexander Clelland sank a shallow shaft outside John Catto's Paddock and found a 60 oz nugget at the bottom. The Government rewarded him 100 pounds for the discovery of what he called "Bervie" Gold field. This name was spelled incorrectly and became Berlin in the official register. The Rheola area became famous for its beds of large nuggets scattered through the gullies. Some of the gold nuggets found during the 19th century include: The Needful found in 1869, Rum Ton found in 1870, Viscount Canterbury found in 1871, Precious found in 1871, Viscountess Canterbury and the Crescent found in 1872. John Catto's Paddock was the location of both the Precious and the Viscount Canterbury. The Precious was Victoria’ fourth largest nugget, weighted at 1,717 ounces. Well that's the way the cookie crumbles 😢
  11. A good find in West Australia that turn into a reef. ............ Source Utube
  12. I always wonder what happens to the really cool finds that people have... so this is kind of a interesting read and if you hurry a chance to get a really cool Opal🙂 Alaska Premier Auctions
  13. I thought you might find this interesting. The Spider is called a Golden Orb Spider that looked like it had a dull greyish body. But when I took some photo's of it using a flash I was amazed how they turned out. This spider was in the process of spinning some insects in it web.
  14. Reg said I should go to Ballarat when I was there and I was very glad that I did. If anyone else is in Victoria you should go too! https://www.atlasobscura.com/places/centenary-of-gold-discovery-monument
  15. Just thought i'd start a post about mining in Australia and what it's like compared to California. As some of us know, California is not mining friendly. I've actually had people say to me "Oh no, you're not one of those people are you?" Sort of makes you feel like a second class citizen. So how is it for the miners in Ausralia?
  16. Who has seen the videos of "Legend of Croc Gold" done in Bougainville Papua New Guinea and how did you get to see it (what links have you got to see it) I spent time there from Feb 1973 to Sep 1979 when I was young and fearless what a great and rewarding time it was for my family and self.
  17. Saw this photo of a miner in Australia using pans to drywash, but is he trying to winnow for the gold? Is this a real technique with pans? I know some ancient miners used to do it with blankets, but this looks really messy and a good way to lose a lot of gold . If it was a technique they used, I’d love to detect or sample that dirt pile underneath his pan.
  18. Riddle of the rainforest coin. Ancient Egyptian visitors to Australia or miner's mishap? ....Link to Coin....
  19. My first day out of Melbourne Australia for a long time was spent exploring Nuggetty Hills near Maldon in Victoria. Felt good to get some fresh country air. Rocky hilly terrain meant I used a drone to get a better view. The drone has proven itself a very useful tool, for prospecting and more. All the best.
  20. As time goes on I hope to see more videos of the Garrett 24k used all over the world. The 24k does seem to impress those who have used it. We can never have too much choice when it comes to machines. As good as the new GPX 6000 is on small gold I still believe there is room for a good VLF in the arsenal. All the best.
  21. New owners are doing a lot of work to get this happening again. About ten minutes drive from my place.
  22. Not too long ago one of the local TV channels started showing Aussie Gold show . What I started to notice almost every episode showed flat ground ? So wondering how that works , from my understanding of geology [ limited ] we need generally plate tectonics / movement , heat , pressure , mountains etc. So some guesses on my end , Australia has some of the oldest land masses , so all the high spots have worn-off ? But then the river valleys do not seem to be there / deep ? Is that more of the coriolis effect Hell I can't afford to get back to CA etc. , otherwise I would come down there to play 😉
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