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During the past year there were many new improvements for the furthering of the development of the district, by far-seeing capitalists who see a future as bright as the most sanguine can paint it; but the most important of all moves was the organization and commencement of work of The Cripple Creek and Pueblo Railway Company.
As the name indicates, the ultimate terminus of the road will be the city of Pueblo. The first four miles of the road will be a tunnel, entering Gold hill on the Cripple Creek side, and seeing daylight on the east side of the camp, on Beaver creek. This obviates the great grades, making virtually an air line to the head of Beaver canon, and shortens the distance to Pueblo one-third less than any of the present routes.
The good that will come from the new road is beyond calculating, and already many men of capital, seeing the advantages, are negotiating with the new railway company for various rights, which will mean the erection of a huge sampling works - the largest in the entire state - a large chemical reduction works for the treatment of ore, and a large power plant.
An independent company will erect a huge sampler at this terminus of the road. All the plans for the works are completed. It will be an ideal and up-to-date plant. It is to be constructed in sections, each section large enough to handle 125 tons of ore; the idea of the sectional plan being to have separate sampling plants for the various large mining companies, where none but their ore will be crushed.
Already there has been over a mile of the underground work completed, the tracks laid and ready for operation.
The beginning of the road is in Cripple Creek, at or near the present site of the Florence and Cripple Creek depot. The Cripple Creek and Pueblo Company has purchased the franchises, equipment, rolling stock, engines, right and title of The Gold Exploration and Tunnel Company.
Besides that, the company has acquired, for buildings and dump surface, the property of The Geyser Gold Milling and Mining Company, which gives them a terminal in Cripple Creek of forty acres.
Already the company has established grades for connections with all the roads entering the district, so that their cars can be transferred.
The first work to be started will be on four sections, making a total supplying capacity of 500 tons.
Another company, now in process of organization, will erect a mammoth chemical mill for the reduction of ore. The experts who have been employed to work out the plans have long since passed the experimental stage in their work, and have definitely announced that they will be able to treat, and at a profit, ores containing as low as $10 gold.
As is readily seen, such a reduction works will mean millions for the total production of the yellow metal. With such a mill in operation, there will be thousands upon thousands of tons of ore, that now remain in the mines, readily hoisted and the gold, thought to be beyond the hand of man, recovered.
Such a boon to the shipper is beyond calculating in dollars and cents.
One of the best things that will result from the organization and completion of this gigantic undertaking, which will so lessen the cost of mining operations that it will be practicable to treat the low-grade ores, will be the formation of a great power company.
Such a company has been worked out in detail. It will furnish the power to operate the underground hauling, pumps, compressors, samplers and mills that will be needed, and will be kept busy when The Cripple Creek and Pueblo Company completes its gigantic bore through Gold, Raven and Bull hills, thereby cutting all the great veins and dykes that contain incalculable amounts of the precious yellow metal.
The power company will generate electricity by waterpower, and bring the secret fluid into the district for distribution. The company will also furnish compressed air at a greatly reduced cost for operating individual compressors, thus making it an object to the various mining companies to patronize them.
With such a condition prevailing, it is readily seen that the cost of mining operations throughout the entire district will be greatly lessened, thereby allowing a much lower grade of ore to be mined at a profit than can be done at the present time.
Mining men generally will be quick to take advantage of such a thing. It will mean much to them. A reduction in the cost of operations means a greater percentage in profits - an item that all corporations look to.
The building and construction of the road means very much to the entire district, and especially to the city of Cripple Creek. An army of men must be employed to care for the interests of the great corporation, and the various companies that will be organized to take advantage of the benefit that the railway company will naturally give.
The good the railway company will do in driving through the hills of the district is beyond estimating. At great depth the tunnel will penetrate them, revealing ore bodies, the existence of which are not known at the present time.
The tunnel will pass through Bull hill at the depth of 1,550 feet.
The terminus of the road will be Cripple Creek. The men back of the enterprise are all men of wealth, far-seeing and shrewd, who not only know themselves, but have had the reports of some of the best engineers in the world, as to what the enterprise will accomplish.
The commencement of work on the construction of The Cripple Creek and Pueblo Railway is by far the most important event that transpired during the year just closed. Of course, it will take some time to complete the bore through the great broad hills of the Cripple Creek district, but the good resulting from the work will be apparent long before daylight is seen on the east side, for as work progresses the wonders of the great treasure vaults laying many hundreds of feet beneath the surface will be revealed, and the permanency of the Cripple Creek district established.