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Monday
Jun212010

Arbuckle

In southwest Shasta County there is an Arbuckle Mountain, Arbuckle Basin and Arbuckle Gulch.  There was also a community probably in the form of a miners' camp and not especially set on becoming a town. So why was it named Arbuckle? We always assume for the surname of a particular miner who discovers the gold or for that miner's hometown. In this case it was after the initial discovery and working of the diggings.

Sequence of events:

An Oregonian, named Engles, who was driven from "rich diggins" after just a few hours by the Indians may have been in Arbuckle Gulch. He talked about it in the community of Cottonwood.

October 1849,  A group of sixteen prospectors, after hearing from Engles about the rich diggings and letting Engles lead them toward the area up Cottonwood Creek and then he (Engles) slipped away with his new mining outfit and mule that the eager miners had provided for him. The large party later became alarmed and frightened by the Indians demonstration of might and fell back discouraged for not reaching the rich diggings and loosing the investment. They were not "Clear Creek" miners and supposedly left the area.

February 1850 - A party of twelve experienced miners from Clear Creek decided to venture into Indian territory to find what the stories were all about and really did find "rich diggins" in a basin of Cottonwood Creek. This party also met with the Indians and discussed as best as could be communicated an understanding that they were there to find gold and not bother or be bothered by each other. The Indians actually showed them the places to find the gold. When the prospectors went back to Clear Creek camp to gather their gear and provisions to return to the new site, other men, mostly Oregonians, followed them out.  To get along with each other in the mining gulches, they worked out a system of footage for each man's spot. The Indians remained troublesome, but the happy miners weren't as fearful of them. The miners were not experienced enough to follow the veins and get more gold and thus left.

The discoverers:

Abraham Cunningham, Alexander Robertson Andrews, French Tuttle, Noah Batchelder, Joseph Voshay, John S. Hittell, Samuel Nicholson, Samuel McConnell, ? Tomlinson, ? Davis, and two more unknowns.

This group also befriended a man by the surname of Watson and sent him into a place they had found on their first trip. This turned out to be a good find and was named for him as Watson Gulch.

According to Alexander Robertson Andrews who was actually in the party of twelve, the discovers, possibly writing in 1880, we have the following:

"After the discoverers left the Arbuckle mines they were deserted by white men until the spring of 1851, when they were again worked by a man named Arbuckle and they have been known as the Arbuckle Diggings since that time. They have been mined almost continuously since the time Arbuckle worked there and a great deal of gold has been taken from them. With the present improved facilities for obtaining water for mining there is little reason to doubt that the Arbuckle mines will yield largely in the future."

Arbuckle as a community didn't establish a post office or a school. The folks received their mail from the Horsetown Post Office or depended on an expressman. In 1871, George and John Parks had a general merchandise store to serve the mostly miners who lived there.

However, in The Great Register for the County of Shasta, 1877, Twenty-one men were listed as living in Arbuckle, all miners except Robert Shaw, a farmer, and George Willis Raymond, a Sheep Herder.~

Arbuckle being a popular place name in Shasta County I must make note here that we are talking about the Arbuckle Basin, Gulch and Mountain in southwest Shasta County mapped from the USGS 7.5' Map, Arbuckle Mountain.

1862 September 4, San Francisco Bulletin -

Homicide in Shasta County - On August 22nd at New Gulch, two miles from Arbuckle, Shasta County, a man named Butler was shot and instantly killed by one Larry Crumbe. The cause of the affair was a dispute about a squaw. Crumbe escaped.~

1877, The GREAT REGISTER of the COUNTY of SHASTA:

Local Residents listed in Arbuckle, Shasta County, California, did not hide the fact they were there for mining. George Willis Raymond brought sheep into the locale to take advantage of the grass.

Robert BLAIR, Scotland, Miner, Arbuckle (Shasta County); William BOWERS, Ireland, Miner, Arbuckle; Charles CABANEKE, Poland, Miner. Arbuckle (Shasta County); Thomas CLARK, Ireland, Miner, Arbuckle (Sullivan County, New York); Joseph DIEHL, _____, Miner, Arbuckle (Shasta County); George Warren DIXON, England, Miner (Shasta County); William HICKS, Massachusetts, Miner, Arbuckle; William LEESE, Isle of Man, Miner, Arbuckle; Antonio LOZADA, Mexico, Miner, Arbuckle (Shastas County); John PARK, England, Miner, Arbuckle (Lucerne, Connecticut); William PARK, England, Miner, Arbuckle (Shasta County); Robert Augustus POWERS, New York, Miner, Arbuckle; Alexander Columbus PHILPOT, Kentucky, Miner, Arbuckle; George Willis RAYMOND, USA, Sheep Herder, Arbuckle; John REAGAN, USA, Miner, Arbuckle; Robert SHAW, Ohio, Farmer, Arbuckle; Cornelius SULLIVAN, Ireland, Miner, Arbuckle; William SULLIVAN, Ireland, Miner, Arbuckle; Meinrad SCHAFFTER, France, Miner, Arbuckle (Shasta County); Gregor SCHNIEDER, Germany, Miner, Arbuckle; John WILLIS, Prussia, Miner, Arbuckle (Shasta County). ~