Deadwood - Encyclopedia Britannica 1911




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DEADWOOD, a city and the county-seat of Lawrence county, South Dakota, U.S.A., about 180 m. W. of Pierre. Pop. (1890) 2366; (1900) 3498, of whom 707 were foreign-born; (1905, state census) 4364. It is served by the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy and the Chicago & North-Western railways. It lies on hilly ground in the canyon of Whitewood Creek at an elevation of about 453 0 ft. Deadwood is the commercial centre of the Black Hills. About it are several gold mines (including the well-known Homestake mine), characterized by the low grade of their ores (which range from $2 to $8 per ton), by their vast quantity, and by the ease of mining and of extracting the metal. The ore contains free gold, which is extracted by the simple process of stamping and amalgamation, and refractory values, extracted by the cyaniding process. Several hundred tons of ore are treated thus in Deadwood and its environs daily, and its stamp mills are exceeded in size only by those of the Treadwell mine in S.E. Alaska, and by those on the Rand in South Africa. The discovery of gold here was made known in June 1875, and in February 1877 the United States government, after having purchased the land from the Sioux Indians, opened the place for legal settlement.

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