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were never conquered by the Spaniards. It is said that the women of this race have from time immemorial been able to maintain supremacy over the weaker male sex, leaving the men at home to take care of the house and children, while they carry heavy burdens to market on their heads. They are very handsome, these women, and their native costume is most artistic, including a picturesque headdress.
Not far from Salina Cruz is the city of Tehuantepec, with 10,000 inhabitants, most of whom live in adobe dwellings. Minititlan, the principal town on the Atlantic coast, is mainly composed of open thatched houses, with a few of brick, which are the residences of the better class of natives and of a sprinkling of English and Americans.
Some day in the not distant future, it is expected, the Tehuantepec Railroad will be double-tracked throughout, thus augmenting greatly its facilities for traffic. Up to the present time it has cost $35,000,000—exactly half of what we have paid for the scarce-begun Panama Canal. There is every reason to suppose that it will be opened for business in the coming autumn, and in all likelihood it will be in full operation for many years before the Panama ditch is completed, affording a pathway for a large part of the commerce of the world.
THE boring of what will be the By recently building the Lucin cut-off
longest tunnel in the United across the Great Salt Lake, in Utah, States, and one of the longest in thereby reducing the distance by 40
the world, has very recently been miles and eliminating a great many determined upon by the Central Pacific curves and reducing all grades between Railroad Company.
Reno and Ogden to one per cent or less, Chief Engineer William Hood has the company greatly strengthened its finished plans and reports for the pro- road as a freight and passenger carrier posed gigantic six-mile hole to be bored against the forthcoming competition of through the Sierra Nevada mountains, in the Western Pacific. The latter expects California, a short distance west of the to be enabled at the very start to divert town of Truckee, Arizona.
a good share of the traffic from the CenThe object of this great tunnel is to tral Pacific, and for that reason is buildcut down the present mountain climbing the new road with 85-pound steel of 7,017 feet by fully 3,000 feet, and rails and with a one per cent grade thus eliminate many of the present curves through the Sierra Nevada mountains, and much of the grade. Chief Engi- whereas the Central Pacific has a grade neer Hood's reports contain some modi- of 2.3 per cent. fications of his first series of surveys, In point of distance the Central Pamade some years ago, and these will cific is 97 miles shorter than the Western doubtless be approved by President Ilar- Pacific as designed by the engineers, riman; and work, it is expected, will between San Francisco and Salt Lake. very soon be commenced on this great In profile, the Western Pacific saves a tunnel.
climb of 2,000 feet over the Sierra NeIt is estimated that the tunnel will cost vada, for its highest elevation on the not less than $10,000,000, and that among mountains will be but 5,019 feet and other things it will cheapen the annual with no extensive system of snow sheds expense of operating trains over the like that along the Ceneral Pacific. The mountain division by fully $100,000. Gould system, therefore, as planned and Being over 36,000 feet in length, the constructed, will, it is asserted, be a tunnel will be one of the longest in the cheaper line to operate on through traffic world, and certainly the longest in the than the Central Pacific without the big United States. The longest now in ex- mountain tunnel. istence on this continent is the 16,000- So it is deemed absolutely necessary foot bore in the Cascade Range in Wash- for the Central Pacific to bore such a ington, on the Great Northern Railroad. gigantic tunnel in the very near future in order that this through line west of tunnel, even if operations are crowded Salt Lake may be placed on an even basis forward as expeditiously as possible. with the Gould road in the all-important Besides working at each end of the tunmatter of cheapness of operation. The nel, operations will be carried on beGould line as planned will come into tween. This will be done by sinking competition with the Harriman line at shafts at intervals down to the proper nine points between the two terminals, level and working each way. This will, and will cross a number of small local of course, be attended with much diffiroads in California and Nevada which culty, as all the excavated rock and earth now feed the Central Pacific alone. will have to be hoisted, and all the neces
It is estimated that three years at least sary material for the interior of the tunwill be required to complete this giant nel lowered.—J. MAYNE BALTIMORE.
IPLOMACY is the art of getting something as though you
were giving it.
The world may owe you a living, but you must collect it yourself. Providence provides food for the birds but does not throw it in their nests.
Gold in a Thousand Sand Pits
By Waldon Fawcett
HERE may be
Instead, he is demonstrating that the gold mine in your back glittering mineral may be taken in payyard, if you happen to being quantities from sources that have living on the site of an heretofore been regarded as not only unancient lake. In scores of productive, but absolutely worthless. In places, scattered all over other words, gold deposits, that were of
the country, there are. pits too low a grade to be worked profitably and mounds of black sand, out of which under the old conditions, are being made gold, platinum and other precious min- paying propositions by the aid of the new erals may be extracted. The national methods devised by the government scigovernment, itself, is the promoter of this entists and engineers. latest mining sensation, which promises The disclosure of this new source of to make as many over-night gold-kings mineral wealth came about in rather an as the discovery of Alaska, itself. odd way. The United States has long
Uncle Sam is not carrying out his new been dependent for its supply of platinum enterprise on the lines of the old-time upon the mines of Siberia and other natprospector, who sought deposits of gold ural storehouses in foreign countries. where none were known to exist before. When the Russo-Japanese War advanced
the price to almost prohibitive figures and The lay reader should not get the idea threatened, if it continued, to cut off the that “black sand” simply refers to one source of supply, the officials of the U. S. grade of sand to be found on the orGeological Survey speedily came to the dinary ocean beach. In its broadest sigconclusion that it would be an excellent nificance the term applies to the heavy thing if this country could be made self- sediment that is left wherever water has sufficient in the matter of platinum sup had an opportunity to work on the soil. ply, as it is in so many other natural re- To be sure, there are great expanses of sources.
this sand on the sea beaches, but there are It had long been known that platinum likewise extensive deposits of it, inland, existed in marketable quantities in what at points which, if not now reached by are known as the "black sands” of the rivers or other waterways, have in ages Pacific Coast, but the deposits were prac- gone by been subjected to wave action. tically useless because of the lack of an Wherever hydraulic mining has been efficient and economical method of con- carried on there are quantities of the macentration or treatment. It was to the terial. Indeed, the placer miners have, in solution of this problem that the govern- most instances, realized that they were ment experts applied themselves. As a discarding material that yet held some first step a general invitation was ex- valuable deposits, but, with the equiptended to Pacific Coast property owners, ment at the disposal of the average whose holdings included such deposits, miner, it would have proven too tedious to send to the government samples of and too costly to attempt to recover it. the wealth-bearing sand for free tests When the response to Uncle Sam's inand there was a generous response, thou- vitation for samples of black sand for sands of samples being received, varying testing purposes brought a goodly acin quantity from sacks of a few hundred cumulation from all parts of the Pacific pounds to carload lots.
Slope, as well as from Idaho, Wyoming