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LIFE ON THE GOLDFIELDS
Bouldercombe first hit the national headlines In 1886, when it was reported that, "the Gogango Board was experiencing a major headache with the problem of prospectors pegging gold claims on a public road In the Bouldercombe area".
Gold continued to be drawn from the area for many years. The report below was taken from the 'Morning Bulletin" dated 9/7/1936.
"Marked-activity is associated with the working of a mining show, situated off the Boudercombe Road, nine miles from Rockhampton, called the 'Hidden Star'. Following the discovery of a reef carrying payable gold, a company called The Hidden Star Gold Mine Limited was formed with a view to working property and treating the ore. Capital of £8,000 was subscribed and, with the installation of the necessary machinery, operations were commenced on August 12 1935.
The battery at that time was a five head stamper, but since then a further five head of stampers have been added. In addition there Is a cyanide plant for treating the sands and the tailings, with five 10-ton vats and the necessary pumps and piping. The whole of the plant is now in operation and is kept working for 16 hours daily.
For the period ended June 9 last 1,475 tons of ore were crushed for a return of 671 oz. 11 dwt. of gold, and the cyanide plant had treated 295 tons of sands for a return of 62 oz. 3 dwt. of gold. Approximately 1,000 tons of sands and stocks at grass were awaiting treatment. As treatment proceeds at the plant further sands will be added to the battery.
Twenty-three men are employed at the mine and battery. The gold is sent to the mint, and the average price received has been £8/2/6.
The management is now proceeding with the installation of further machinery which will enable the mine and battery to be worked in three shifts, or continuous operation for six days a week. This will result in the employment of more men. The main shaft has been sunk 160 ft. and there is every indication of good values being obtained at a greater depth.
Other places exploited In the last few years are the New Zealand Gully diggings near Sliepner Junction, the old gold reserve behind Elgalla Homestead. the district between Mt. Chalmers and Mt. Wheeler, Shepherd's Gully at the head of Midgee Creek, Boongarry, the Old Retrieve mine at Baree (Mt. Morgan), and Ridgelands.
In addition to the operations of syndicates, prospecting work has been carried out -by unemployed men, who are assisted by the payment Of a government allowance of £2 a week."
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