Yukon Gold Company, Dredge No. 1 on Lower Bonanza Creek, 1913.

Yukon Gold Company, Dredge No. 1 on Lower Bonanza Creek, 1913.

Accession Number: 1993.67.37-PER
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Photograph of Yukon Gold Company dredge No. 1 on Lower Bonanza Creek after being damaged by dynamite.

Inscription recto: 139

On February 22, 1913, Dredge No. 1, on Lower Bonanza, was dynamited and sank in its pond. Violence of this kind was unknown in the Klondike, where doors were seldom locked, and harried arrangements were made to post armed guards on the other dredges in case the dynamiter should try to strike again. The Yukon Gold Company posted a $5,000 reward for evidence leading to the conviction of those involved. Numerous ski tracks near the stricken dredge cast suspicion on a small group of Swedes, who appeared to own a few pair of skis. The principal suspect, nicknamed the Educated Swede, had often been seen skiing near the dredges. It was not until R.E. Frankliin, Yukon Gold's Electrical Superintendent, returned to Dawson in mid-March and planted a primitive listening device in the cabin where the Swedish group often gathered. Crouched outside in the cold, he listened and took notes while the group made fun of the police and the Guggenheims and later heard the suspect say that he had chosen No. 1 since it was closer to town and his tracks would be easier to explain. The Educated Swede (who was in fact Norwegian) was arrested soon after and while Franklin's evidence was never presented at court, there was a long chain of circumstantial evidence that resulted in his conviction. (Source: The Gold Hustlers, Lewis Green 1977.)