James Haun Diary, June 1854

Previous Compare to John Haun’s Account Next

Thursday 1 – Cool last night and today and cloudy with all. I had to put on my coat to work in. The three of us got gold $45.50. Hawkins and I are still a fixing our hose and pipe. I was yesterday and today making Hungarian Riffles to save gold.

Friday 2 – Cool and cloudy most all day, the wind from the South. Rained some in the evening late and after dark. John and Hopkins got $48 in gold. Hawkins and Shaw was setting boxes and I was making new riffles.

Saturday 3 – Cloudy at intervals and rain and thunder this evening. The three got gold $79. I and Hawkins are still fixing. I made two more riffles and Hawkins went down to the Point after two tom irons &c.

Sunday 4 – O, the Delightful weather! Just right for man. We divided out our gold for the last 3 weeks in five shares, each $86.50 and was dividing our provisions also. Dobson came up from Rich Bar about noon and I paid him off the balance for his claim $300. He said he was very sorry for selling out. My lesson is Paul’s Letter to the Hebrews, Chapter 1.

Monday 5 – Shaw and Hopkins got gold $28 and Hawkins and John was working the hose and pipe. They did not wash or clean out the boxes. I do the fiddling: mending boxes, fixing more riffles.

Tuesday 6 – Shaw and Hawkins got gold $37 and us three got $4. I was out in the afternoon. The pipe and hose work very well. We were at work in hard cement. The day was rather cool for sunshine.

Wednesday 7 – Shaw and Hopkins got gold $42. We expect better pay as soon as we are out of this cement. The weather is cool for the time of year, but pleasant enough.

Thursday 8 – Cloudy this evening. I did not feel able to work this afternoon. We got gold $41. I am buying milk at 6 bits1 a gallon.

Friday 9 – Fine weather, the dry season has regularly set in. We got gold $68.50. I did not work. I was too weak after taking four pills last night.

Saturday 10 – Fine weather indeed. No storms. The underbrush is quite green and the pineapple cactus2. A roadside  is peeping out of the ground, quite a number of them. We got gold $67. I shall take a wash and four Barlow pills and to bed.

Sunday 11 – I wrote a letter to H.P. on business, requesting him to send me up some gum coats. We divided our gold from this last week’s work, $59.30 a share. I received a letter from Dave of date April 16 18543 by one of the partners near sunset.
I went down to the Point and mailed my letter to H.P. and came back in the dark before the moon rose. My lesson was the second Epistle of Peter, Chapter 3.
I dreamed that I was in Georgetown going up the street to hug my wife. I saw Lizzy playing with a number of other  girls. They were going around in a circle and she was to turn her back and let one of them hide and then she was to tell by seeing the rest who it was that was gone. If she failed to tell she had to try it again. But she spied me and said, why uncle. We started to go to the house, but I woke up and found myself lying in my bunk. O, what a sad disappointment to find myself in the mountains of California, thousands of miles away.

Monday 12 – Cool and cloudy and rained more or less all day. No work done by the company.

Tuesday 13 – Cloudy in the fore part of the day but fair in the evening. The four went to work and I went down to the Point after dinner and paid Roots and company $6.50 for letters, $9 for a pan and fork, $140 for 7 lb meal, and $1 for a bottle of Medicine. We got gold $76.50.

Wednesday 14 – Pleasant day. All at work. I went out and worked all day, feeling first rate. We got gold $7.50.
I was fixing and cooking. A man stood before the door with two carpet wallets and said, why day bird what brought you out here? It was John Lloyd.

Thursday 15 – The weather is all right and all are at work. We got gold $49. John Lloyd said the gold looked very nice and thought we had good diggins. My wife ought to see me making mush as I am dieting and gaining fast.

Friday 16 – Pleasant weather indeed. We were all at work, got gold $73.50. John Lloyd is a heap of company for me.

Saturday 17 – Cloudy in the A.M. and rained all P.M. though we worked till late and got gold $72 cleaning up bedrock. John Lloyd took a tramp up the ditch.

Sunday 18 – John Lloyd and I went and staked off claims, seven for me and five for John. We bought those and another two by preemption and picked out one for Lloyd. We then went up the ditch and stopped some holes. Then we came home and breakfasted.
Lloyd and John went down to the Point. Our new partners had already gone. They came back before noon and we divided the gold. First we paid the previous expenses of the company $39 and then divided the remaining $240 making $48 to each. I then paid $36 for lost time in sickness and then the other three paid me for board $41 and Hopkins paid me $32.25 for the use of water.
I broke a hoe cleaning my potatoes and went down to the Point. Gave $2.50 for a new one, $1.50 for a bottle of bitters and then came home in company with Lloyd. My Lesson was Chapter 7 of Revelations.

Monday 19 – We five went to work but made no money. Lloyd went to the Point.

Tuesday 20 – I made a proposition to the company to take in Lloyd on the same terms with Hopkins but it was refused. I then said I would not work in this company longer. So we did nothing all day but disagree. Hawkins in a mean Yankee of New York. Shaw is a gentleman of the West.

Wednesday 21 – We made a settlement with Hawkins and Hopkins. Shaw bought his claim in the water at $150, including all the provisions and tools. I paid him $500 for us four and Shaw $29. That paid his bill. We then went to work in the P.M. Shaw went down to the Point. We got no gold worth weighing. The wind blew pretty hard from the South.

Thursday 22 – Quite a frost last night, it bit some of my potato’s tops. We four all went to work and got gold $29.50. Shaw and I worked together and Lloyd and John.

Friday 23 – Fine weather. We made nothing, but the Johns made $2.50. One ought to see me making mush to eat out of kiln-dried meal.
I was well aware today that I was forty-three years old today.  I often thought of my wife today and expect she did the same of me and wondered what I was at.
I read Revelations Chapter 20, and to bed.

Saturday 24 – We got gold $19.50. We done but little owing to lost time and the brake-up with Hawkins. This Yankee won’t do.

Sunday 25 – We four have been fixing up our grub bill so as to have it easily understood. I read this first chapter of Matthew this morning.
We all went down to the Point in the P.M. I got a letter from H.P. on business. I sent for gum clothes to work in. I paid for sharpening picks and $3.75 for the company. I bought a bottle of bitters for $1.50, and a 5th of meal for 75 cents.
Dobson stabbed a man down at Rich Bar four times. The miners went down to see about it.

Monday 26 – We got an English sailor, Lilly Lane, to come and sew our hose again. They keep a-bursting. Shaw and I hewed out some slabs at the mill for sluice boxes. The Johns were digging and got gold $7.50. A considerable freeze; the leaves was stiff this morning.

Tuesday 27 – The Johns got gold $13.50. I and Shaw got our pipes and hose to work again. The bank caved in and caught my leg under the dirt but I was not hurt.

Wednesday 28 – Cool nights and warm days. We all got gold $11. The Johns got about one dollar. I dreamed last night that I was in Georgetown and that my wife put her arms around my neck and kissed me–but, O, the next moment how sad the disappointment! Sleep had left me and I lay all alone in my bunk considering my disappointment.

Thursday 29 – Fine weather. We were all at work and got gold $40. Now we sit about the cabin doors as if we were exiled. That still small voice that speaks within tells of better days I hope I may come soon.

Friday 30 – We got gold $9. All’s well. The coyotes have commenced to howl again. Our ravine is still hard cement.

Previous Compare to John Haun’s Account Next
  1. 75 cents. A “bit” is equal to 1/8 of a dollar or 12.5 cents, the common slang “two bits” is equal to 25 cents.
  2. Matricaria discoidea, also known pineappleweed or wild chamomile
  3. Not included in this collection.