Old Time Echoes.
PIONEERS OF GOLD-DREDGING
The story of the origin of gold, dredging in New Zealand is told ns by Captain Hosking, of the Commonwealth Mine. In 1863, the Captain and his five mates were working alluvial ground at Teviot, now cadod Roxborough, about 200 miles from/ the Molyneux. They knew that the bed of the river carried good gold, but the rises in the river were so frequent as to debar them from working it. On one occasion they were able to wade in up to their belts and pick up with their shovels good wash. They were not rich men, and roast beef anti goose seemed to stare them in the face from this out, for they were able to earn £lO per week per man.
But one night the snow waters came down and the river at this point rose 26ft., within two feet of their hut. They were naturally reluctant to leave the place, and it was while their minds were being severely exercised in this respect that they launched out in a scheme which the Captain believes to be the origin, primitive as it. was, of the great machine dredges which are now doing good work even on our own river the Macquarie. They bought an old boat and patched it up. This they moored in mid-stream, and with a bag made of sheepskin and a mouth-ring, held down to the bottom by the biggest man with a heavy manuka pole or spear, they dredged the river from the shore by the windlass which dragged the bag along the bottom. They did very well, and other parties came along and improvements with them ; for, the idea having been sug-g-eGed, development, as in all such cases, hurried along. The first, party to keep the Captain’s party company introduced a punt with a windlass attached, and following on this dedevelopment came the stern - wheel punts. —Wellington Times, N.S.W.
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Old Time Echoes., Southern Cross, Volume 14, Issue 51, 23 March 1907
Old Time Echoes. Southern Cross, Volume 14, Issue 51, 23 March 1907
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