FAIRBANKS — Kantishna’s Eldorado Creek, as opposed to the 26 other Eldorado Creeks listed in the “Dictionary of Alaska Place Names,” is a 5.5-mile-long tributary of Moose Creek, located just downstream from the confluence of Moose and Eureka creeks.
Mined since the short-lived 1905-06 Kantishna gold rush, Eldorado Creek’s mining history is a microcosm of the ebb and flow of mineral development in the Kantishna area.
During the brief six months the rush lasted, lode deposits of silver were discovered along Eldorado Creek, as well as a stibnite deposit (an ore of antimony) on Slate Creek, an Eldorado Creek tributary near its headwaters.
Mining picked up again during World War I. Slate Creek’s stibnite deposit was worked between 1915 and 1918, the Kantishna Hydraulic Mining Company mined along Moose Creek as far south as the mouth of Eldorado Creek until about 1922, and a silver deposit at the head of Eldorado Creek produced ore through 1923.
Along with other Kantishna mines, those along Eldorado Creek were hampered by high transportation costs, as a road from the Alaska Railroad to Kantishna was not completed until 1939. Most mines, even those with rich deposits, were simply uneconomical to operate.