(2) History Journal Entries (1862) Essay

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Journal Entries 1862 Day 1 (Barkerville): I’m in what is soon going to be known as Barkerville. As I walk throw the streets I people why this area is going to be named Barkerville. I learn that a man named Billy Barker –who worked in Lillooet about 400 km south of Barkerville as a miner- decided to move to the area near Richfield to work on several mines that he owned. After he didn’t find any gold there, he decided to look below the canyon, in the area where Barkerville now lies. Many other miners thought Barked was silly, and that no gold would be found there. The area Barker chose to mine was hard. In places like Richfield- where he used to mine- gold was only three to five meters under the ground. On August 17th, 1862 he and his workers dough about 17 meters to strike an old river channel. A shovel full of gravel was sent up from the shaft and panel in the creek. It revealed $5 worth of gold. A bucket was next filled to the top with gravel and paned. It yielded $1000 worth of gold! This was the richest paydirt in the Cariboo. It offers Barker and his team a fortune of $600 000! Within no time at all, the appropriately named town of ‘Barkerville’ was springing up around the area where Billy Barker decided to mine. With the news of his valuable finding, other miners also decided to move into the surrounding area in seek of their own riches. Who’s silly now? The town opens 10 general stores that carried almost everything a miner might need. Eventually his fortune ran out, Barker returned to his old habit and usually only making enough money to get by. Day 2 (Judge Begbie): One of the most well-known people from Barkerville’s past is Judge Matthew Baillie Begbie. He’s been labeled as ‘the Hanging Judge’ by newspaper reporters, but not until after he died. However, many have argued this is an unfair nickname and that it’s not an accurate way to describe him.

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