Vignette Vol. 3 No.5
Resource: BEHIND THESE MOUNTAINS
1920. Excerpt -- Bull River Valley: Montana Mining was well known to be a rough and tough game that wasn't always peaceful. It wasn't unusual for skullduggery to occur that went unnoticed by local and regional newspapers. Some local happenings made the news, but most didn't.
One such case occurred during the years King and Lowry were prospecting in Sanders County on the East Fork of Bull River, below St. Paul Lake. When King and Moore from Kalispell owned the mine, Pat Moran mined with King. Tom Moran was the prospector who lived in the basin that bears his name–Moran Basin.
St. Paul Peak, Chicago Peak and Milwaukee Pass, Copper Gulch, Last Chance Prospect, and Bull River Valley.
During the fall of 1920, King and Lowry were prospecting on the East Fork of Bull River, high in the mountains below spectacular St. Paul Peak. Others were also prospecting on Milwaukee Pass below St. Paul Peak. In Copper Gulch, below nearby Chicago Peak, at the Last Chance Prospect, copper and silver were assaying pretty high.
Frank Berray told of one summer-day tragedy in a prospecting tunnel on the East Fork of Bull River.
"I think his name was Moran, but I'm not sure. Now they don't know whether someone short-fused him or whether he short-fused himself. They always did their blasting at noon. They'd set five blasts and only four went off. He was out of the mine. Maybe it was long-fused. Anyway, he went back in to see why it [the dynamite charge] didn't go off. Then it did.
"When he was blowed [sic] up King took him and laid him out on the ore dump. And then they come for help but the trail got afire.
"The folks noticed the trail afire and when King come down they asked him why he set the trail afire. Well, he said he just accidentally set it afire. So they couldn't get up there. King told them that the boy was dead.
"It was about four days before we got in there on account of that fire. I, and a fella named Jace Edwards, and my dad, Caspar 'Cap' Berray, went up there and packed him out. When we got up there to get him of course he'd laid out there and he was in pretty bad shape. His whole face was blowed [sic] full of rock.
"We wrapped him [his body] in canvas and put him on the pack horse."
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