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Carl Anderson

CARL ANDERSON, one of the fortunate miners of the Nome gold fields, was born on a farm near Kalmar. Sweden. When sixteen years old he went to Stockholm, and learned the trade of painting and paper hanging. In 1891 he immigrated to the United States, and lived in Chicago until 1898. In the latter part of this period he learned the trade of a tailor's cutter.

In February, 1898, he started for the Klondike. Arriving in Ballard, Washington, he began the construction of a steam schooner, into which he put all of his money. His associates in Chicago failing to supply promised funds for the completion of the vessel, he was compelled to abandon the work, and start for the Northland without funds. He sailed on the Argo to St. Michael, and the vessel continued the journey up the Yukon to Rampart. Mr. Anderson spent two winters in Rampart. The first winter he prospected and mined on Little Minook. In the summer of 1899 he worked in the woods cutting logs for Fort Gibbon. This work furnished him a "grub-stake" for the following winter. During the winter he mined on Little Minook, Jr., and he and his partner found the best pay ever discovered on this stream.

In the spring of 1 900 he came to Nome. He was employed by the Pioneer Mining Company, and in the following winter he and John Johnson went to the Kougarok District. Mr. Anderson remained on the Kougarok prospecting, while Mr. Johnson went to the Arctic slope. Returning to Nome in February, he and his partner nearly perished. They were two weeks on the trail, and one night were compelled to sleep in a snowdrift. The heat of their bodies melted snow, and next morning when they started on their journey their clothes were wet. As soon as they encountered the open air their clothes froze. When they finally arrived at Sliscovich's road-house Mr. Sepola, his partner, was badly frozen. The road-house was filled with people seeking shelter from the severely cold weather of this winter.

In the spring of 1901 Mr. Anderson went to the Gold Run country to prospect a claim on Skookum Creek. Not finding pay, he sold his outfit "on bedrock," and returned to Nome. The bedrock payment he never got.

September 15, 1901, he and John Johnson started for Candle Creek. They spent the following winter in unsuccessful prospecting on Candle, Chicago and Willow Creeks. They lived in a tent, which is a cold and cheerless winter home in this country. In the following summer he worked for Mr. Sundquist, and had charge of a shift on No. 18 Candle. In the latter part of the season he, John Johnson and John Roberg went to the Kobuk region. Mr. Anderson was near the Shungnak when the strike was made on that stream. He mined on the Shungnak in 1903, and near the close of the season returned to Candle. His attempt to return to the Shungnak diggings that fall was frustrated by the misfortune that befall the steamer Riley, which got caught by the ice at the delta near the mouth of the Kobuk. He, with the other passengers, took a part of their supplies to the first timber and built cabins, where they spent the winter. Before the close of the year Mr. Anderson took a trip to the Shungnak and did some assessment work. In the summer of 1904 he worked on Dall Creek. He and his associates, including E. O. Lindblom's representatives, extracted $2,000 in dust from Dall Creek.

In the fall of 1904 Mr. Anderson returned to Nome, and came near going the states. He finally decided to remain, and accepted John Johnson's offer to go in partnership with him on a lease of the Portland Bench, a claim near the great strike on Little Creek. Taking Nels Peterson as another partner, these three men began the work of sinking holes on this claim in November. In the latter part of February they had sunk six shafts in frozen ground to bedrock and had drifted 160 feet. Pay had not been found, and they were discouraged. They had enough coal to sink another shaft, which was to be their final effort. They had made preparations to abandon the shaft in which they were working, and had used the thawer for the last time in the drift. Mr. Anderson was working under ground. He sent up a pan of gravel taken from the end of the drift. This pan contained more than two dollars in gold. A second pan contained eight dollars. Investigation revealed the edge of an old beach deposit in which the sands glistened with gold. In sixty days, with only five men working in the drift, a dump was taken out which, when cleaned up, yielded $413,000. It was the richest gold placer ever discovered.

Mr. Anderson is a man of quiet demeanor, honorable in his business relations, and highly esteemed by the friends who know his moral worth.  

Source: Nome and Seward Peninsula by R. S. Harrison. Seattle: The Metropolitan Press, 1905.




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