Alaska Treasure Mine and the ghost town of Gastineau City – by Brian Weed (Juneau Empire -December 23, 2015)

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The history of the Alaska Treasure Mine begins in 1884, when William Thompson found mineralization on the south end of Douglas Island, in the Nevada Creek area. Unable to find any backers, Thompson didn’t develop it and the area was abandoned.

In 1903, Percy Morgan and Col. Frank Stone purchased the area and created the Alaska Treasure Gold Mining Company. There were 25 employees working the property in the summer of 1904. The next year a wagon road was built from the beach to the mine site; it had an elevation gain of about 800 feet.

Under the watchful eye of Mike Hudson, buildings were built, tunnels drilled and, by the end of the year, the Corbus Mill, Hudson adit, Hogback shaft and 700 feet of trenches were completed. In 1906, 1.5 tons of hand-picked ore was sent to a smelter and it came back with an $11,000 return.

Stone was very happy with the work that had been completed. He left the mine to arrange for more drill equipment and a 10-stamp mill, with plans to order another 10, but he had trouble finding parts due to the destruction left by the San Francisco earthquake.

In late October of 1906, a 20 Risdon Iron Works stamp mill arrived. It was built and began crushing ore from the Hudson tunnel on Thanksgiving Day. At this time Nick King, the previous foreman at the 240 mill in Treadwell, was in charge of the Corbus Mill. But shortly after the start up one of the 10-stamp mills developed a broken part and was unable to run. The other continued until freeze-up two weeks later.

Very little work was done in 1907. Mike Hudson, the foreman, was elected as mayor of Douglas in 1908. He told the press that the Alaska Treasure Company was running strong and would start up the mill that summer. However Col. Stone had been ill for some time and died in June. Work was stopped once more due to legal issues.

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