had elapsed when we made our query.
It was prompted by a telephone inquiry made by some one unknown to us—yes, we have a lot of such, as some take us for an information pagoda.
We replied, ‘There was
something of the kind, but we have no definite knowledge of it—no—no—we can't tell any lies about it. Good-bye.’
Some weeks later a very readable and interesting story appeared in the Sunday issue of a Boston paper, with a view of the locality.
It located the mine on land of Mr. Willis
, and says, ‘the shaft was sunk to a depth of eighty-five feet, encountering a spring that caused much trouble and that a lateral tunnel was excavated for seventy-five feet and that there all trace of silver was lost.’
Also that ‘the work was prosecuted for two years and after $10,000 was expended, ceased for lack of capital.’
How true these details may be we know not, save the fact that work ceased, which is self-evident.
We have made some inquiry.
One man, an assessor of those days, says, ‘We went up there to see if there was anything taxable. . . found only a hole in the ground. . . no buildings or machinery. . . nothing doing.’
Others were at the time in question incredulous, saying it was a scheme to sell land.
This was before the territory became a public reservation, also before the construction of the Winchester
reservoir, which now stretches away from the near-by ‘Old Tony's ledge,’ toward the Lawrence
observatory on Ram's Head
The spot is shown on the map of the Fells and marked ‘old silver mine,’ and the elevation of ‘Silver Mine hill
’ given as two hundred and fifty-five feet. At this remote day it is difficult to get at satisfactory conclusions.
One says to us, ‘Fiction is always readable, but don't believe it.’
The story of night and day gangs of miners, heavy blasting, and richness of ore in recent accounts do not accord with the testimony of old residents.
, in its resume
of ‘81, said:—
Who in Medford would have risked a pair of old shoes on the prophecy, that in the course of the year, silver mines would come