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Wednesday, September 15, 2010

One Hundred Posts! Guest blogging and a Hard Hat and Pearls adventure!

I am pretty sure this is my 100th post. My "dashboard" says 99, so the assumption is I am correct. I can hardly believe it!! I thought it would take me a year to get to this point. Not just a few months. No wonder there is times I run out things to share!

I started this blog out to be one of decor on a tiny budget, that is still part of it. I started in April with one " bear with me" mini post and did not touch it again till May. My daughter Rebecca then took the reins and designed the page for me and made another short post, a comparative shopping post ; also still part of the blog, as I am always looking for bargains. Then a profile blog, and I was off and running.

 Through the months it has morphed and evolved, as life often does.  No longer just about decor, but now fashion, shopping, daily life and me and hubbies adventures in and around the Northern California area in which we live. I have shared my ups and downs, my panic attacks and happy dances. My insecurities and my boasts. From loosing our home and becoming apartment dwellers , and nearly being homeless and becoming empty nesters. I share my weight loss journey and my self improvement in other areas as well. Recently, I have added baking to the mix as well. My camera goes with me everywhere, and nothing escapes blog fodder for me.

I have relaxed my feelings of needing to post daily, or be perfect or follow the rules, or even worry that no one is reading. I say relax, cause I still would like to post daily, and would love to have more readers and comments....never will be one to follow the rules and perfection just ain't happening. I have "met" and become friends with fellow bloggers and now also have readers from all over the world, often from places I do not recognize! And other bloggers are giving me awards, sending readers my way and asking me to guest blog. I am so honored when that happens.

I am actually guest blogging with an older post over on my friend Angie's blog today. YEP , we finally figured out what was the issue, well my daughter Rebecca be sure to check it out , read her back posts and other guest posters. The post I shared with her was our adventure to Sutter Creek Gold Mine...part of a Hard hat and Pearls post that I made a while back. Well I have another!! So to tie in with the post I shared over at Treasures and her readers, I am sharing today our latest day trip adventure to Placerville , CA. and The Gold Bug Park and Mine .

First a little history , thanks to the official web site for the park and mine:

"It wasn't long before the prospectors were panning in the stream running through Gold Bug Park following the gold discovery in Coloma on January 24, 1848, only eight miles away. Big Canyon Creek was rich in gold for those early prospectors who could just pluck the gold from the stream.
Several prospector huts lined Big Canyon Creek during the early years of the Gold Rush. Every spring the streams and rivers throughout the Mother Lode produced a new crop of gold into the river bottoms. It was coming from the quartz veins outcropping into the streams and being washed away.
Once the panning operations were not turning up much gold, hard rock mining came into being. In 1860 hard rock mining was established throughout the area and small mining companies and miners were digging their own drifts following the veins into the sides of the hills.
Picture of William Craddock, first owner of Gold Bug Mine.
In 1888, The Hattie Mine was opened by William Craddock and John Dench. The Hattie, so named after Craddock's eldest daughter, was first established across the canyon. However, it played out. The larger vein structures were noted on the south side of the canyon and a new drift was started. They followed the vein well back into the mine before circumstances dictated a sale.
John McKay took over in 1926 and turned at an angle to search for a more prominent vein structure. What you see today is the result of his work. Tracks were laid for the ore cars to assist in the removal of the ore. The ore was then taken outside and run through a crusher to extract the gold.
The air shaft was probably established to provide clean air for the workers to work in the mine. After a day's work it would take 24 hours for the air to exchange so the men could start to work again. It is believed that no more than 2-3 men worked the mine at a time.
It is not known how much gold was removed! No records were kept. During World War II the mines throughout the Mother Lode were closed by order of the President as gold mining was considered a non-essential industry and men were needed to go to war.
The last owner of the four mining claims of the park area was held by William Meagher who owned the Independent Iron Works in Oakland, CA. He spent many hours working the mines and the area to keep his title on the property. His family always came with him and spent time swimming behind the dam he created on Big Canyon Creek, and hiking in the area while he worked. He built a summer cabin which still exists today at the end of the road. The Gold Bug Park Committee plans to turn the building into an nature center describing the flora and fauna of the area.

Because the mining claims were no longer worked or expanded, the Bureau of Land Management took over the land as public property. In the early 1960's the federal government under the Recreational Use Purposes Act leased properties to government entities for just that - recreational use. In 1965 the City of Placerville received the lease with the promise that the land would not be sold, divided or used for any other purpose than recreation. Under a 25 year lease agreement the City prepared to create a park.
In April 1980, Hangtown's Gold Bug Park Development Committee, Inc, was formed to clean up, protect and defend the property for public use.
On February 1, 1985, the park was approved for listing in the National Register of Historic Places and also as a State Point of Interest on the California registry.
Gold Bug Park is now owned and operated by the City of Placerville. The City of Placerville is the only municipality in the state of California to own a gold mine. Today, you can step back in time to the mid 1800's and experience what it was like to be a miner in the gold rush era."

*Be sure to click on the link and read the rest of the web site, and watch the video on the front page! You will get to see and hear what we did while taking the tour. Also if you are in Northern California , stop by there and pay the 5.00 each to take the short tour, it is worth it; there is nothing like being there in person! Also, keeps this wonderful place open and running! 

Hard hat and a Pearls pic was a can not quiet see the pearls in this pic, but they are there! the black "necklace" was actually a tour wand. There are 13 stops where you stand and listen. I know unlucky as that number is, we still made it out! This is the view that we saw upon entering the mine.There is one way in and one way out. Hubby is very hands on in these tours! These shots are ones of the slate surrounding us to the sides ... and over head as well.The white veins are quartz and as mentioned before , quartz is where the gold is. As we continued on, it got colder, darker and wetter....bit creepy actually. This is a hole made by hammering into the slate with large is for putting dynamite into. A cart and a tunnel, just left and never mined... You will have to excuse the blur on some of these, between being chilly and the camera having a hard time adjusting to the lack of light, many turned out that way. This is a shaft that was not fully explored. It just dead ends...we saw this explanation at another part of the park This shaft is linked to another and you can feel the fresh air coming in This is how far down we are below ground at this point... Original tracks...   You can still see the dynamite fuses in the wall! Time to turn around and head back out....start looking for that wonderful "light at the end of the tunnel"......  Ahhhhh, fresh air! beautiful scenery surrounding us once again. We went back to where we had picked up the hard hats and wands , explored the museum just a bit.... can you believe the difference in the price of gold??  After we explored this area a bit ,we were off to go to the other part of the park....The Stamp Mill. But I shall save that part for tomorrow. So I hope you will come back and explore that with us...OH and there is even more to share from our day trip and that will come on Saturday, because of course French Girl Chapter 4 is on Friday.


  1. No one looks cuter in a hard hat! ;) I actually lived in Placerville, actually the next town over called Cameron Park but Placerville was the big town to go to ;) Loved it up there! Thanks for doing the guest post!!! ;)

  2. I could have sworn I didn't leave any gold in that mine... thanks for the great virtual vacation and tour... and congratulations on your 100th post!... come visit when you can...


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