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Frank Reid Testimony

The Skagway Townsite Lawsuit was heard by Department of Interior Judge Delaney in Sitka, Alaska between late March and middle April 1898. The witnesses called by both the protestants and the defendent, Bernard Moore, provide valuable data on what was at Skagway in the early months of the town's existence. This testimony belies much of the legendary tales that sprang up in later years about "Skinners, Skinnees" and claim jumpers. It also provides a fascinating in-sight into the early stages of community formation.

Frank Reid, as a surveyor, was called by Protestants, J. G. Price et al. on April 1 and testified through April 2, 1898.
APRIL 1-2, 1898


Scanned and edited by Catherine Holder Spude, November 2011.


[page 48]


[April 1, 1898]

Frank H. Reid being first duly sworn testified as follows:

Q. Give your name, residence and occupation?

A.  Frank H. Reid, age 54, residence Skaguay, Alaska, Civil Engineer and surveyor.

Q. Will you just state briefly Mr. Reid, what experience you have
had as a civil engineer and surveyor?

A. I have been engaged in railroad work and city work and government for 26 years.

Q. What time did you go to the town of Skaguay, Alaska?

A. July 28, 1897.

Q. Do you know the applicant for patent in this case?

A. Yes sir.

Q. And also Capt. Moore, his father?

A. Yes.

Q. Since what time?

A. I met Ben Moore July 28, 1887, when I first landed at

Skaguay. I met Capt. Moore some time [sic] in August, 1897.

Q. Are you the same surveyor that laid out most of the Townsite

of Skaguay?

A. Yes.

Q. And have you a map and plat of the town made by yourself of

your own survey.

A. Yes.

Q. You will please produce that map?

A. (Witness produces blue print of Townsite of Skaguay).

Q. When did you make this survey and plat?

A. I commenced the survey on the 7th day of August,1897, by laying

off blocks one to eight, inclusive.

Q. What initial point did you use at the commencement of this survey?

A. At the corner of Broadway and McKinney St., where Burkhart's

store is, on the new map it is Broadway and Fifth.

Q. Now have you continued this survey from time to time until it has been enlarged so as to cover the ground as represented by this



[page 49]



plat that you have just produced?

A. I have. I have extended all the streets and alley ways as shown on the map.

Q. This plat, or blue print, represents the present town of

Skaguay, as laid out?

A. Yes sir, approved by the town council.

Q. Are you acquainted with the exterior boundary lines of what is known as the present Bernard Moore claim, and, if so, have you ever made a survey of said claim?

A. Yes sir. I have retraced the lines of the Bernard Moore claim.

Q. Where did you obtain the data consisting of courses, distances and monuments, by which you made such survey?

A. I took the notes as published in Bernard Moore's notice of intention to make final proof.

Q. Do you mean the same upon which Bernard Moore applied for this patent?

A. Yes sir.

Q. I hand you this paper and ask you to indentify it and tell

what it is?

A. It is the plat of the survey of the exterior boundaries of the

present townsite of Skaguay, made by me on the 19th day of October, 1897. It Includes the Buchanan claim also.

Q. Have you the exterior lines of Bernard Moore's present claim? also represented on this map, or any portion of it?

A. I have all of it.

Q. And you used the same courses and distances in making this survey as you stated before so far as it pertains to the Bernard Moore claim?

A. Practically the same. The chaining on the Garside survey over run [sic] a little bit but not to amount to any thing [sic].


[page 50]


Q. Will you please take this nap and show the Board the boundary line running along Skaguay Bay which Bernard Moore is claiming to be one of the exterior boundaries of his claim?

Counsel for claimant objects unless the plat is offered in evidence.

Objection is withdrawn.

A. The line on the map marked Moore's line is the southerly boundary of Moore’s claim.

Q. Have you also marked on the map the line of ordinary high tide along the Moore claim where it abuts upon Skaguay Bay?

A. I have.

Q. Have you ever computed the number of acres of land lying between the line of ordinary high tide and the southerly boundary of Moore’s claim?

A. I have.

Q. How many acres of land do you find there?

A. 17.01.

Q. Then this claim of Moore, as he is making it now, contains 17.0l acres of tide land?

A. Yes sir.

Q. I have here the original location notice of Bernard Moore of what is known as his agricultural claim, which is part of the final proof papers offered by Moore in this case and I wish you to take the same and to read over the courses and distances therein set out then explain to the Board if you can, and look at map marked "Exhibit B” and show just what grounds, as near as you can, that was included in this agricultural claim.

A. The first point mentioned in the field notes is a point 12 and 3/4 chains north of the mouth of Mill Creek and about 6O ft. above north high water which is on the line of the J. F. Fields claim on the map marked "Exhibit B", adjoining the Wheelock and Flannery land claim, thence in a westerly direction 40 chains, thence in a northerly direction 40 chains, thence in an east S. E. direction 40 chains, thence in a southerly direction 40 chains to place of


[page 51]



Q. Would you please mark upon this map and indicate as near as you can the approximate corners of this claim and mark them in red ink A, B, C and D.

A. I have.

Q. Are the boundaries of this claim identical with the one he is trying to patent, if not, please illustrate from the map the difference?

A. They are not. The south line of the old claim is north and east of the south line of the present Moore claim.

Q. Did the southerly line of the agricultural claim extend down to Skaguay Bay?

A. No sir.

Q. Do you know and if so how many acres of land lies between the southerly boundary of the agricultural claim and the southerly boundary of the present claim of Bernard Moore, and also approximate­ly how many acres between the line of ordinary high tide and the southerly boundary of what is known as the agricultural claim?

A. There is about 53 acres between the southerly boundary of the present Moore claim and the southerly boundary of the agricultural claim, and there is about 17.01 acres between the southerly boundary of the present Moore claim and the ordinary high tide line, leaving about 36 acres between the southerly boundary of the agricul­tural claim and ordinary high tide line.

Q. Did the agricultural claim at any place border on salt water?

A. There is a place on the creek where the salt water backs up to the line of the agricultural claim.

Q.  Now coming back to this blue print which has been referred to here as Protestants exhibit "C" I would like for you to indicate on said plat the exterior boundary lines of Moore’s present claim?

A. It is indicated by a light line running through the center of block B cutting about the center of block 45 about l00 ft. S. W. of
block 44 and 43 extending through the central part of block 42 and 40 and 31.


[page 52]


Q. What exterior boundary lines if any of Moores [sic] present claim cor­responds with the exterior boundaries of the town of Skaguay?

A. Three of the lines are identical. These lots and blocks marked on the plat are laid out on the tide land and were surveyed out for the parties claiming them as tide lands.

Q. Do I understand of you that no other land is laid out into lots and blocks on this blue print marked Protestants Exhibit “C” except the land of Moore?

A. No the Buchanan claim is laid out into lots and blocks, and that portion of the tide land extending up to Third are.

Q. Would the northerly exterior boundary line of the town site of Skaguay be one of the exterior boundary lines of the Moore claim?

A. No. It takes in the Buchanan property and a portion of land lying on the N. side of Skaguay river.

Q. Can you indicate on this blue print which is marked an exhibit in this case, where the southerly boundary of Moore's agricultural claim runs?

A.    Through the north end of the mill lot and out about Sixth ave. on Skaguay river.

Q. How many blocks then of land in the town of Skaguay bordering on the Skaguay Bay and in the southern part of Skaguay are left out of the agricultural claim?

A. About 28 blocks and the Mill lot.

Q. Are you acquainted with the land on the western side of the Skaguay river?

A. I am.

Q. Have you ever had any experience in laying out grounds for wharf purposes at Skaguay?

A. Yes sir.

Q. Is there any practical place for a wharf to be built out into salt water from any upland on the western side of Skaguay river?

A. There is no place to build a wharf on the west side of the river without crossing over the point into a little bay back of the moun­tain on the point and building an expensive piece of road through


[page 53]


a low place, which I do not consider to be practicable.

Q.  Is there any practical way then of reaching white pass [sic] with­out crossing crossing [sic] some of the land which is now claimed by Bernard Moore?

A. There is not.

Q. When you first went to Skaguay in July last, do, you know and if you do I wish you would state all the improvements that Bernard Moore had upon what he is now claiming from the Government?

A. He had a small log house and the top of a sloop or small boat a kind of a brush hovel on the 6 acre lot he now claims and has fenced and a leanto [sic] to the log house where he kept ducks and pigeons.

Q. I wish you would take what is known as the Garside map which has C. W. Garside’s affidavit attached to it and state whether all the improvements that are mentioned thereon were upon the premises in question in July last and I will call your attention to what is mentioned as a foundation on said map and want to know if it was on the premises at that time or is now?

A. I saw no foundation on that south line of that 6 acre lot of Moore's. There was no fence there then. There was a building on that 160 acres, a log house 12 x 14 one story high, where Moore lived and the boat house spoken of before and the brush stable and the building used by the Co. for a store and a boarding house and a house where Capt. Moore now lives, sometimes used as an office and a log foundation, 3 or 4 logs high adjoining the store on the east side.

Q. Was Capt. Moore’s house then completed?

A. No the outside part was up and it wasent [sic] finished inside. He was up on the trail when I first came to Skaguay.

Q. Was there any other building except these already mentioned?

A. No I don’t think of any more.

Q. That about this barbed wire fence that Garside has on his map?

A. It was not there then and is not there yet.

Q. Now what do you know about this piece of pasture land, which is marked on Garside's map.


[page 54]


A. That piece of pasture land is covered mostly by driftwood and timber, there is no fence around it and never has been to my recol­lection.

Q. I understand that nearly the entire amount of that piece of land is covered by salt water?

A. Well most of it is covered by drift wood that is thrown there by high tide, that is it was covered in July.

Q. On this map I notice also quite a tract of land that is marked cleared land. Did Moore ever clear that land?

A. That tract of land marked 19.99 acres? No.

Q. I see also marked on here sawmill, and millsite. Tell if you ever had anything to do with the surveying and laying out that piece of ground there and all the circumstances connected with it.

A.    I surveyed out the mill lot there for Mr. Hill and made him a plat of it and at his request I put the name of the Company on it The Alaska and Northwest Territories Trading Companies Millsite and Mr. Hill paid me for doing it.

Q.    Who is this man Hill?    

A.    He is the manager for the Mill Company.

Q.    Who built this mill?

A.    Mr. Hill.

Q.    Did Hill ever tell you who the owners were of that property?

A.    No he told me the name of the Company.

Q.    What Company did he say?

A.    The Alaska and Northwest Territories Trading Company.

Q.    Did you ever have any conversation with Hill concerning the millsite or the mill if so state it?

A.    He came to me a number of times and asked me get people off the lot who was going on to it. He says I find you for surveying it and I am responsible to the Company for the way that I manage it and if I lose it they will blame me for it.

Q.    Do you know what Nationality Hill is?

A. Yes sir, he is an Englishman.

Q. Do you know whether or not that Bernard Moore has now or ever


[page 55]


has had anything to do with the management or superintendancy [sic] or anywise controlling the affairs in and about this mill?

A. No sir he has not.

Q. Is the Mill running now?

A. No it is not.

Q. How long has it been shut down?

A. Three months or more.

Q. Do you know where they got the logs that they sawed into limber when they were running?

A. They got them off of the Moore claim and the Buchanan claim.

Q. This building marked "Wharf bunk house” on Garside map, tell when it was built if you know, by whom, and who has the management and control of it?

A. It was already built when I came to Skaguay July 28, and the Mill hands and wharf hands were all boarding there.

Q. Did you ever see Ben Moore around there exercising any super­vision over it?

A. No sir. He had no supervision over it to my knowledge.

Q. What about this store building?

A. That building was there when I came in July 97, and occupied by Harry Holmes as the manager for the Company.

Q. Did you ever see Moore around there ordering any goods or bossing Holmes around any?

A. No sir.

Q.  This building marked log house?

A. That was a foundation about 8 logs high when I came there and has since been finished up by the people and used as a city hall.

Q. Has Ben Moore ever had anything to do with it?

A. No.

Q. Then there is another building there marked store that stands next to the log ware house?

A. That is J. G. Price's law office and the Skaguay Real Estate and Investment Company’s office.


[page 66]


Q. What lot are the two stores and log ware house on? and who located them?

A.  They are on lot No. 8 in block 2, Harry Holmes told me he was going to claim it.

Q.    What about this sawmill bunk house?

A. That was claimed by Mr. Hill, built in the street. That was built for the accommodation of the mill hands as a bunk house and boarding house.

Q. Did Ben Moore ever have any management or control of it?

A. No sir.

Q. This building marked as a hotel, what about that?

A. That building sprung into existance since this contest commenced. That was built at the instigation of Capt. Moore on a lot claimed by him, father of Bernard Moore.

Q. Did Ben Moore ever have any control over it?

A. No sir.

Q. Now here is another building marked stable and office?

A. That building marked office on the plat as Capt. Moore's residence and the pig pen joins it on the west and the stable on the south.

Q. Did Capt. Moore ever have you to survey and lay off some lots, on this land that is in controversy, for himself?

A. He paid me for surveying the boundary of his wharf site and his man Mr. Cole paid me $20 for surveying lot No. 7, 8, 9, l0, 6, in block 1, and lot No. 11 and 12 in block 8 and they have all been jumped since.

Q. What lot is this hotel built on?

A.  Lot No. 6 in block l.

Q. Is that one of the lots that you surveyed for him?

A.  Yes, one of the lots that I surveyed for Moore at the request of Cole.

Q. Has Capt. Moore jumped one the lots belonging to Ben?

A. It seems so.


[page 57]


Q. Did you mean that these lots that you had surveyed out had all been built upon?

A. All have been built upon except the one occupied by Capt. Moore.

Q. Did you ever hear Capt. Moore claim this to be his lot?

A. Yes air. He claims the whole town site.

Q. Were you in the room before the Board here on the opening day of this case while I was addressing the Board and hear a remark that Capt. Moore made relative to this 160 acres of land, if so, state what he said?

A. Yes sir, he said it belonged to him and Ben both.


The hearing was then adjourned until 9 o’clock the following day.


Hearing resumed at 9 o’clock A. M. April 2, 1898, present same as on preceding day.


Q. State Mr. Reid, if you ever made a survey of the wharf property which is claimed to be the property of the applicant for patent in this case, and if so at whose request and the circumstances connected therewith? 

A. Yes sir. I made the survey for the approach to the wharf at the request of Mr. Warden, who was the Superintendent of the wharf premises. I got the assistance from Mr. Hill at the Mill and while I was at work Mr. Hill wanted to know what I was doing. I told I was surveying for the approach to the English wharf. He found fault about my encroaching on his Millsite. He wanted me to survey off his Mill lot as soon as I finished.

Q. Now do I understand you to say that the Superintendent of the wharf Co., Warden, and the Superintendent or Manager, Hill, of the Mill Co. were each disputing as to whether certain grounds on this Moore claim belonged to the wharf Co. or the Mill Co.?

A. Yes sir.

Q. Do you know the nationality of this man Warden?

A. He came from Victoria. I am not positive about what he told me about his citizenship.

Q. You have spoken of some Mill property which Hill had you to



[page 58]


survey. Did you ever know of any one leasing that property, and if so, tell the circumstances?

A. Mr. Hill told me that he had leased it from Ben Moore.

Q. Was that before or after you had made the survey of it?

A. That was before.

Q. Did you ever know of Hill leasing any of this property?

A.  I advised him to lease it to parties that occupied it, and he told me that he had done so. One of the parties had a bath house on it and has yet.

Q. State if the applicant in this case ever had any conversation with you about any portion of this land in controversy and if so when and where and repeat all the conversation and circumstan­ces connected with it?

A. Ben Moore's 5 acre lot joins this Mill tract and some time be­fore I surveyed the Mill lot, Ben Moore asked me if I didn’t think he ought to have 5 acres in where his house is. He re­marked that he had lived there two years and thought he ought to have something there. I told him to go ahead and fence off 5 acres as quick as he could and take it as near in a square piece as possible and he did so putting his fence around the tract shown on the plat marked Exhibit “C” as Moore's lot. I agreed not to survey that into lots and blocks, and have kept my agreement.

Q. That 5 acres still remains there in that condition undisturbed?

A.  Yes sir.

Q. Did you or did you not ever hear anyone else claim title to that same piece and if so state the party and the conversation?

A. Yes I had a fraction of a lot outside of the Moore lot to survey for Mr. Christopher. There was a building in the street directly in front of it so I hadn’t room to set up the instru­ment and turn off the corners so I had the boys run through on Moore's lot and offset that line back to the corners of the lot. Just as we had finished putting in the corners Capt. Moore in company with Ben Moore came out in the direction of Ben's


[page 59]


house and ordered the men out of the lot, telling me with the rest of the boys that that land belonged to Capt. Moore. Ben complained to me about someone else knocking his fence down. I told him that I had explained to him down town that we were going to survey out that fraction and not to be disturbed if he saw us up there on his lot. At this time Capt. Moore called us a lot of thieves and accused us of trying to steal his land we had the corners set and we left them.

Q. Now, Mr. Reid, referring back to this land that is on the western side of the Skaguay river, I would like to ask you the kind and nature and quality of that land?

A. That part marked block 129, 130, 131, 133, and 134 lays at foot of a mountain in the bed of the river, and nearly all of it is over flowed at every high water.

Q. Why is not this land still further on to the westward of the the Skaguay river platted? In connection with that state the nature of the land to the westward?

A. It is platted up to the foot of the mountain and rocky bluff.

Q. Upon what kind of land, whether, tide land or upland, is this sawmill we have been speaking of, located?

A. I should call it tide flat, from the fact that it requires boom sticks to hold the logs on the land, and the buildings adjoin­ing that lot are put up on posts 8 to 4 ft. above the ground. The ebb and flow of the tide goes back and forth over the land.

Q. The applicant in this case states in his affidavit something about some goats that he once had upon his claim, tell what you know about that if anything?

A. About the latter part of August, 1897, I was passing by the house and Ben Moore called my attention to some goats he had in a pen by the house, asking me what I thought of them and if I thought goats would do well there. I asked him if he was going to raising goats and he said he thought he would. He asked me if I could tell the Bucks from the she ones. I looked at them


[page 60]  


a little bit and I told these were all old weathers.

Q. Do you think he would raise many goats out of that lot he had?

A. No they wouldn’t breed very fast.

Q. On yesterday you spoke of a man by the name of Cole asking you to make a survey for Capt. Moore. I want to know of you if that is the same Mr. Cole who has been sitting in the office during the trial of this case most of the time busily engaged in taking notes while the witnesses for the protestant have been testifying?

A. Yes sir.

Q. Counsel for protestant offers in evidence the blue print of the town of Skaguay, which has been marked protestant’s exhib­it "C” also the other, map and plat which the witness has tes­tified from, marked Exhibit “B”, which were received.


Cross examination by Judge Delaney for Claimant.


Q. Are you a Deputy U. S. Surveyor?

A. I have received my appointment from General Distin and am now preparing my bonds to send in.

Q. Were you a Deputy U. S. surveyor when these surveys were made and these plats which have been offered in evidence?

A. No sir.

Q. Was this survey of the so called townsite of Skaguay made by you in pursuance of any order from the Surveyor-General of this District or any other land officer?

A. No sir.

Q. Was it made under the direction of any townsite trustee duly appointed by the authorities at Washington?

A. No air.

Q. By what authority and under whose direction was it made?

A. By the authority of the people and under their direction.

Q. What people?

A. The people who have settled Skaguay and built a town there.

Q. At the time that this survey was made did you know that Ben Moore laid a claim to 160 acres of land covered by this townsite?


[page 61]


A. No sir. I thought the English company owned it.

Q. Then you did know that Bernard Moore or some other company or person laid a claim to 160 acres of land there?

A. It was called the company's land there.

Q. Did you know that an official survey had been made of it by Chas. W. Garside at the time you made this survey?

A. I had heard there had been.

Q. You knew it didn't you?

A. Not until after I had commenced the survey and I talked to Mr. Garside about it.

Counsel calls the attention of the witness to the official survey now on file as part of the records herein and also calls his attention to the map of Moore’s claim attached to and made a part of the affidavit of Deputy surveyor, Chas. W. Garside, now in evidence as a part of the claimant's testimony, and propounds the following questions:

Q. Examine these two maps more especially as to the meander line on the water front and state whether or not they are approximately the same in location and as to distances and courses?

A. Yes sir they are approximately.

Q. Then if your testimony is true as to the location of the mean high water mark as you have heretofore testified along the water front of Moore's claim the statement or marking on the official plat of the said Garside of the mean high water mark is false?

A. Yes sir.

Q. Now, do you know what the ebb and flow of the tide is at Skaguay Bay?

A. I know the points reached by the high tide on Skaguay Bay, and the points reached by the extreme high tide, and approximately the number of acres covered by drift wood.


[page 62]


Q. how many feet does the tide rise and flow in Skaguay Bay, perpendicular, vertical? 

A. I haven't measured it but I should judge 18 or 20 feet.

Q. Have you ever made any measurements or observations on the ebb and flow of the tide there that will enable you to state in feet the vertical distance or height rather the tide shows between the lowest high tide and the highest high tide?

A. I have taken a set of levels from the point reached by the highest high tide down to the southern boundary of the Moore claim, which is at about the point of the lowest high tide.

Q. Whats the distance in feet vertical?

A. It will average about 5 feet.

Q. At what point do you understand the term ordinary or mean high tide as used by the Commissioner of the General Land Office in his instructions to be with reference to extreme low high tide and extreme high high [sic] tide?

A. I understand it to be the point reached by the ordinary high tide.

Q. Then you do not understand the term mean high tide to signify the meander line at a point midway between extreme low high tide and extreme high high tide?

A. I think so.

Q. What time of the year was it when you ran this level?

A. I think it was the 19th of October.

Q. It is a fact is it not, that at certain seasons of the year the tide reaches a greater flood than at others?

A. Yes sir.

Q. And there are other seasons of the year at which the tide is at what might be called extreme low tide?

A. There are seasons at which the tide reaches a higher point than at other seasons of the year.


[page 65: pages 63 and 64 not transcribed at this time (CHS)]



Q. Is the mess house, the store, the portable office or building now occupied by Price, the new building of Capt. Moore where the bank is, was the bunk house before it was moved? within the limits of that tract?

A. Yes sir.

Q. You stated in your direct examination that there was no fence there, wire and post fence, when you went there in July, 1897?

A. Yes sir.

Q. Your knowledge only comes down to 1897, you don't know what was there before that time?

A. No.

Q. The log building now occupied as city hall would fall within the agricultural location as Judge Winn calls it?

A. Yes sir.

Q. You don't wish to be understood as testifying that the barbed wire fence as shown on the Garside map was never there, do you?

A. I can't tell from the map how much he intends to represent there as barbed wire fence.

Q. There might have been barbed wire fence, post and wire fence before you came there, and it might have been torn down before you came there, might it not?

A. Yes sir there might have been.

Q. You stated that Harry Holmes was a manager, what of?

A. The store or trading post.

Q. When did he leave?

A. Some time the latter part of August or the fore part of September, I couldn't tell exactly.

Q. So far as your knowledge extends, neither the Alaskan and 
North Western Territories Trading Company, nor Billingham, nor Billinghurst, nor Hill, nor Escolme, nor Buchanan, nor Holmes, nor King, nor Capt. Moore have filed any protest or adverse claim to Ben Moore's application for a patent in this case?


[page 66]


A.No Sir.

Q. How long was Warden there?

A. I think about 3 or 4 months, probably more. He is there in town now, but not in the employ of the company.

Q. Do you know anything whatever about the business relations of Ben Moore with the Alaskan and North Western Territories Trad­ing company?

A. Only what I see.

Q. Do you know whether or not the Alaskan and North Western Ter­ritories Trading Company is an alien or an American corporation?

A. I know their manager is an alien, and several of the employees are aliens.

Q. What is the company, American or foreign?

A. It is understood at Skaguay that they are foreign.

Q. And you think it is?

A. I do. They ship contract labor in there.

Q. There are a good many foreigners there?

A. Yes sir.

Q. Good many that are not English?

A. Yes sir.

Q. What business were you engaged in when you first came to


A. I came to Skaguay with Mr. Hilts.

Q. Tended bar for him in the saloon awhile didn't you?

A. Yes sir, and bought flour and bacon.

Q. That's expert testimony same as goats isn’t it?

A. Yes sir.

Q. How long was you in the saloon business?

A. I wasn't in the saloon business at all.

Q. How long did you tend bar for Hilts?

A. I only stayed there to help Mr. Hilts, to take care of the place for him while he went to Juneau.

Q. Is there a bar in the place?


[page 67]


A. Yes sir.

Q. Did you tend to the bar?

A. Yes sir.


Redirect examination.


Q. Do you know whether or not this 160 acres claimed by Ben Moore ever had the reputation among people generally as being Moore's trading post, that is, was it referred to by people as Moore's trading post?

A. No sir, it was never referred to as Moore's trading post since I have been in Skaguay.

Q. Can you state whether or not this entire 160 acres was, or ever will be, necessary for the carrying on and conducting, trade and manufacturing by Ben Moore?

A. No sir, it isn’t necessary.

Q. What would you say about Ben Moore having spent as much as $50,000.00 in improvements upon this claim?

A. Why he has never done it.

Q. Who shipped these foreigners in to work in that saw mill up there, and what nationality were the foreigners?

A. That I couldn't tell who shipped them in but they went to work in the saw mill. They were English and Irish.

Q. Since you have been there has Ben Moore conducted a trading business and manufacturing business on these premises in the sum of $50,000.00, or any other amount? per annum?

A. He hasn't to the amount of $50,000.00.

Q. He might have marketed a few groceries for family use.


Recross examination.


Q. Do you know what that saw mill cost?

A. It cost about twice or three times as much as it should. I do not know exactly.

Q. Do you know approximately?

A. No sir.



[page 68]


Q. Do you know what wharf cost?

A. No sir. I know approximately.

Q. Well sir, approximately?

A. Approximately in the neighborhood of $75,000.00.

Q. Do you know what the bunk house, the mess house, the store, the portable place where Price is, Capt. Moore’s residence, the building where the bank is, approximately would cost to put up, or what they did cost approximately?


Counsel for protestant objects to the question as being irrelevant, immaterial and incompetent and totally foreign to the case.


The decision of the board is that the objection is overruled and the testimony is considered relevant.


A. Yes sir I know approximately what it would cost to put up the bunk house, Mr. Hill's bunk house, but I don't know what it cost Mr. Hill to put up.

Q. What should it cost in your judgment?

A. It should cost about $600.

Q. Take the next building, the mess house? Down westerly of the


A. That building with the lean to's and sheds. Should cost about

$450 to $500.

Q. The store?

A. $125.

Q. The portable place where Price is? When you first saw it?

A. $150 would be a big price for it.

Q. Capt. Moore’s residence?

A. would cost about $250 or $300.

Q. The building where the bank is?

A. I never examined that building and couldn't estimate it without going through it and looking at the partitions.


[page 69]


Q. Could you form any judgment of the approximate amount of business that is transacted over the Moore wharf?

A. No I don't know how much business is done over that wharf.


Redirect examination.


Q. Did Ben Moore furnish the money and means and build and construct the saw mill in question, and the wharf in question, and the buildings which Capt. Moore owns, or any of these other buildings and, if so, make your exceptions?

A. No sir, he did not. The only building that Ben Moore had anything to do with around there is that log cabin and the annex to it, and the few sheds and brush stable and housing for a sloop, a duck pen and hen roost, and stable. All on the 5 acre tract marked on the plat as Moore's lot adjoining the millsite or mill lot.


Recross examination.


Q. How do you know he didn't furnish the money?

A. Because he was working as a common laborer when I went to Skaguay and didn't have money enough to pay me for surveying out that 5 acre lot.

Q. You are just as positive that the money that put these improvements on this land was not furnished by Ben Moore as you are of anything else you have testified to?

A. Yes sir.

Q. You are just as positive that the money that put on these improvements was not made for his benefit as a part of the improvements on the 160 acres?

A. I think the improvements were put on there by the English company to enable Ben to prove up on this 160 acres. That’s my opinion.



[page 70]


[Signed] Frank H. Reid


I hereby certify that the foregoing testimony was by me read and corrected in the presence of the witness, and that it was then subscribed to by him at my office in Sitka, Alaska, this 4th day of April, A.D. 1898.


[signed] John W. Dudley Register.





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