Here are tales of two tragedies from this gold mine. Mining is –and has always been- a dangerous profession. At 4:20 p.m. on December 9, 1937, Charles Haynes was sent down into the main shaft, into the darkness. His job was to turn on the pumps. But Charles Haynes never again saw the light of day. They waited a while for Charles Haynes to return. Then a co-worker, Marshall Evans, was sent down into the main shaft. Evans found Charles Haynes lying dead in the sump, 200ft. down. The autopsy was performed by a Dr. Murphy. He found that Charles Haynes had drowned, and had broken 2 ribs. No one ever found out exactly how he died. Maybe he fell, and was struck unconscious. It’s still a mystery. The Washington Post reported that during questioning, the foreman, Mr. Turner became hysterical. He “whipped out a pistol and moved it towards his head in the company office while and officer was asking him about the death.” Charles Haynes was unmarried, but, as the coroner said, he was “mourned by a large number of devoted friends. “
Here is the second tragedy:
At 10:45 p.m. on June 15, 1906, Charles Elgin, a miner, was in the hoist house, ready to take some dynamite down into the shaft. No one knows how the dynamite ignited- maybe it was a spark from a miner’s lamp- but the blast destroyed the hoist house and the building collapsed on Elgin. A fellow miner, George Elliott, escaped the blast and survived. Was alcohol involved? A bottle of cheap whiskey was found. But we’ll never know for sure.
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