Wednesday, 8 November 2017

Come and meet us.

Donald Waite, Brian Antonson and Fred Braches will participate in  “Local Author Day" at  Black Bond Books at Haney Place Mall on  Saturday, 18 November. Their time is from 12:00 pm to 1:00 pm. Looking forward to seeing you there!
Click here for the day's program.

Thursday, 27 July 2017

What is going on?

 Why was Adam Palmer having a secret meeting in Hope with famed veteran prospector Rob Nicholson and what did Crystal Island prospector George McLennan have to tell them? Our man in Hope spotted them but he could not tell anything about their discussion. They let him take a few pictures. The real purpose of the meeting that brought the three together remains a mystery. 

Monday, 17 July 2017

Slumach’s Lost Gold Mine has been found

QuinanBear, a member of the Canadian Gold Prospecting Forum claims that he has found the location of the famous gold. Click here to read the correspondence. 

Noteworthy comment from one of the members of the Lost Pitt Lake Mine Society.
That forum has always been full of beauty... man oh man... it never ends on that forum... just a bunch of internet weirdos sitting in a basement obsessing over childish stories trying to live out their "great outdoorsmen" dreams... Entertaining to say the least, but sad also as it represents a large amount of our population...may they rest in peace if their ever set forth outside of their home....

Sunday, 4 June 2017

Fact and Fiction

Click here to open and read a review of Fact and Fiction: Slumach and the Lost Creek Mine in the summer edition of British Columbia History, the magazine of the British Columbia History Federation. The review was written by Mary Trainer, well-known as co-author with Rick and Brian Antonson of Slumach's Gold: In Search of of a Legend and author of Whistle Posts West: Railway Tales from British Columbia, Alberta and the Yukon.

Thursday, 1 June 2017

Alfred (Fred) George Gaspard

Fred Gaspard, 1949
Alfred George Gaspard, was a 60-year-old widower who disappeared in the upper Pitt River area in 1950. During his life Fred Gaspard had been logging, prospecting, and farming and in 1949 he started a frog farm. The next summer Gaspard went into the upper Pitt River area never to be seen again.  Reportedly he was flown to a point north of Alvin and a second plane dropped off enough food for him to survive until the snow started falling.
On 28 February 1951, a dozen or so newspapers in the eastern US, all affiliated to Associated Press, published an article about Gaspard’s disappearance but the matter did not seem to catch the attention of BC newspapers until, on June 29, 1951 the Vancouver Sun reported that the RCMP had ended an unsuccessful two-week ground and air search for the lost “gold hunter.”

In October of that year both the Province and the Vancouver Sun reported that RCMP Constable John Dowsett of the Port Coquitlam attachment and Stan Zepeski of Pitt Meadows set out set out to Alvin on a five-day quest. As anyone familiar with the area knows the upper Pitt River at that time is a roaring torrent and the search in the rain in rough terrain was hazardous. As expected nothing was found but the account of their brief expedition made for good copy, in particular for the Province. That may have been the main purpose of this senseless expedition. Click here to read the article in the Province.  

Sunday, 14 May 2017

Slumach Mining Co. Ltd.

Henderson 1899-1900
A new discovery pushes the association between the name Slumach and the search for mines back to 1897 with the formation of the Slumach Mining Co. Ltd of New Westminster. The use of the name Slumach suggests that there were rumours circulating shortly after his death connecting the old man with that legendary mine.
Those who signed the “Memorandum of Association” for the company on 24 February 1897 are Bartley Willet Shiles, John Morrison and Frederick Robertson Glover. SHILES was mayor and GLOVER city clerk of New Westminster. MORISSON may have been a farmer living in Coquitlam but that has not been confirmed.
Glover had been city editor of the Daily Columbian at the time of Slumach’s arrest, conviction, and execution. His brother-in-law, T.C. Atkinson was Slumach’s defence lawyer.
The objectives of the company were not limited to any particular area or site but covered the entire province. 
Shiles was director of another company formed in 1896 amalgamating a few existing mines in Alberta and BC. The Slumach Mining Company was a tool to search for or acquire potential and existing mines throughout the province, not to look specifically for "Slumach's gold." 
Aside from being listed as a mining company as for instance in Henderson's Directory shown above  nothing was ever reported about the company's activities if any.

Wednesday, 3 May 2017

Gold Trails & Ghost Towns

Gold Trails and Ghost Towns was a historical documentary show created and produced by Kelowna television station CHBC-TV and hosted by Mike Roberts with historian storyteller Bill Barlee.

Delighted to discover on YouTube the episode "Lost Slumach Mine." Click here to enjoy it!

Saturday, 29 April 2017


This morning Don Waite and Fred Braches joined other authors selling fact and fiction to celebrate independent bookstores (Indies) at Black Bond Books in Maple Ridge.

Tuesday, 4 April 2017

New insight into the old legends!

Click here to read tomorrow’s Looking Back column in the "Maple Ridge News" about Fact and Fiction: Slumach and the Lost Creek Mine. 

Saturday, 18 March 2017

Guytos [?]

“But he [Walter Jackson] fell sick, and being about to die, bethought him of Andrew Hall, who had grubstaked him at Guytos [?] many years before.” That is a quote from an interview with Wilbur Armstrong back in 1915. Click here to read the article. Where was that place Guytos? 

Guytos is possibly, as Brian Antonson suggests, a misspelling of Guyots. He found a Guyots Glacier in Alaska that flows south of Guyot Hills into Icy Bay. Not much mining activities in that area. 

It is perhaps more likely that “Guytos” refers to Guyot Hill in Colorado an area that saw plenty of prospecting and mining activity. 

Guyot Hill, Teller County, Colorado 

Thursday, 16 March 2017

They found it !

Summer 2016...
“They found it"..Evan and Adam walked over it and it wasn't until they headed back two years later that they realized they had found the Lost Creek Mine... so they say...
On a 12-day traverse from Harrison Lake towards Pitt Lake this was the only mineralization they saw. It was in a huge gap in the rock, deep down under the lip of a glacier. The location matched that of  Volcanic Brown's supposed last camp. 
The outcrop of rock is so far the best and most promising find in the search for the lost gold mine!! 
However, when they returned to their base camp after two days of careful examination and exploring  they found their tent crushed by a massive boulder (see below) Was this the curse?!? The ghost of Volcanic Brown? Or is it something else, not even of this earth? Click on the images to enlarge. 

Saturday, 4 March 2017

Slumach's gold revisited

Fact and Fiction: Slumach and the Lost Creek Mine, written by Fred Braches, is a welcome addition to Slumach’s Gold and earlier publications about the legendary gold of Pitt Lake.
In this 70-page book Braches puts Slumach and his legend in context, clearly separating the facts from fiction – and giving the readers the big picture. His approach is a respectful one, at the same time showing how First Nations people were perceived in days gone by.
For anyone new to the Slumach story and looking to discover more, this is the book to read.
Interested? To order a copy of this limited edition write to Whonnock Books, PO Box 130, Whonnock V2W 1V9, E-mail: or leave a message at 604-462-8942. The book sells for $12.00 plus mailing. Also for sale at Black Bond Books.
Click here to read what BC BookLook reported about Fact and Fiction.    

Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Digging for gold (and actually finding it)

Click here to read the story of Darrel Davis’s staggering gold deposit near Trout Lake. Contributed by  Brian Antonson,

Monday, 6 February 2017

Duck Rest in Pieces

Who knows where that map is? 
Back in October 2015 we wondered about that. The answer was that the map “was painted on the wall -- so it was torn down.”
In the Sunday issue of Tri-City News of 9 December 2007 is a report on the history and demise of the Wild Duck Inn that included this photo of Bob Watts. "taking a gander of the duck-hunting map.” Now that we have the map, where did you think that gold was? Thanks to Garth D. for finding that information and for Brian A. for sharing it.
Click here for page 1 of the article and click here for page 2.

Tuesday, 17 January 2017


Curse of the Frozen Gold made it to the final round for a Canadian Screen Award of the Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television. Winners will be announced at CSA awards show evening on March 7th.  The show is up against some big money shows… Fingers crossed! The History Channel must be pleased to be in the running with Netflix and CBC shows.
Best Factual Program or Series (in alphabetical order)
“Curse of the Frozen Gold” – History (Corus Entertainment)
 “Keeping Canada Alive” – CBC (CBC)
 “Real Detective” – Netflix  (Netflix) 
 “Still Standing” – CBC (CBC) 
 “This Is High School” – CBC (CBC)