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Mixing Regions.-Under this designation we embrace all placer deposits, both the superficial detrital formations and the deep-lying conglomerate-like cement diggings, as well as the infiltrated system of quartz veins. In general terms, we may desiguate both slopes of the Rocky mountuins as pertaining to the mining regions.
The crests of the main chain, from the point of entering the Territory until reaching Mullan's Pass, in about latitude 4610 and longitude 35° west of Washington, maintain : course very nearly north 40° west. From this locality they make a sbarp turn to the southwest, and run on thus until they pass into Idabo. Within this limit the ridge is cut througb in but one place by the far western affluents of the Big Hole branch of the Jefferson river.
We find on the eastern slope two belts of ore-bearing country resembling an inverted V, the apex of which is towards the north. The left hand belt starts from Horse prairie below Bannock City, in the southwest ; thence passes through Blue Wing, Argenta, and an eastern systein parallel to the Silver Bow and Butte Ciry districts on the west, and continues onward through Beavertown, Jefferson City, Helena, and Silver City, northwards. The second belt commences high up in the mountains south of Virginia City ; passes thence northerly through Ramshorn, Brandon, &c., then disappears or gives but faint traces of its presence in the alluvial valley through which passes the river Jefferson, and shows itself again near Beavertown, from whence the two eastern belts pass northwardly as one.
West of the crests of the main range we find not only less developed but also less continuous zones of impregnation. That the points of enrichment appear to be more isolated is owing, doubtless, to a less thorough prospecting. Further south, and drained by the westernmost affluent of the Big Hole-emptying its waters, it is true, to the east, but from its position preferably credited to the west-we find the rich but shallow diggings centring about French gulch, a locality long since worked over and abandoned.
Advancing northwardly we have a mineral belt just west of the crests of the main chain, at the head of the Blackfoot river, running nearly northwest and southeast, conformably to the trend of the mountains and corresponding to a western prolongation of the mineral belt of Silver Bow and Butte City.
We find still another belt southward of, and baving a marked parallelism with, the general course of the Hell Gate river, bearing about west-northwest and east-southeast. This belt embraces Gold creek, the point where gold was first discovered, and likewise its continua. tion on the head-waters of Flint creek, where, lately, there was reported the discovery of valuable gold-bearing quartz lodes. Hence, pursuing the same direction, we still find evidences of gold deposits on most of the affluents emptying into the Hell Gate further west.
The most recent attraction for the migratory, restless race of miners, is a point on the western slope of the mountains far towards the northwest, and only a few miles distant from the line of the British possessions. The particular locality is said to be between the Jocko mission and Thompson's river, where there are believed to be both rich and extensive deposits forming those species of placer mines known as gulch and bar diggings. Many people have flocked thither, both from Montana and from the neighboring Territories. So great, indeed, has been the exodus from certain localities that many mining camps are entirely deserted. Whether the reported richness will be borne out by a closer examination remains to be proven. Such migrations are of too common occurrence in the history of placer mining to merit more than passivg mention, except for the purpose of exemplifying a peculiar phase of life in the mountains. Washings yielding fair average returns are abandoned on the justant so soon as the whispered rumor spreads abroad that fabulous richness lies hidden on the bed rock of some far-off ravine. The tireless prospector dares wind and snow in the depth of winter to hunt up new placers, and seems to prefer such as are most inaccessible and most dangerous to explore on account of hostile Indians. On the approach of winter these “stampedes," as they are called, occur most frequently. The summer bas yielded its harvests, favorable to some, but unfavorable to many, and winter begins to lock up for a six months’ rest the watercourses which are indispensable to placer mining. Hence, the prospector, unable longer to continue his washings, starts forth to renew tho chase of fortune, laden ouly with pick, pan, and shovel, and an amount of provisions measured by the length of his purse or the soundness of his credit. Sometimes in company, but more frequently solitary and alone, they carefully investigate such ravines, gulleys, &c., as experience or fancy may dictate. Buoyed up by the hope of ultimately “striking it rich," they endure every species of hardship and privation and not unfrequently are frozen to death. Amputations of frost-bitten hands and feet are of quite common occurrence.
This nomadic instinct, combined with practiced observation, alacrity in every emergency, and self-reliant bravery, has moulded å race of hardy pioneers, fit instruments to subdue the wilderness and the mountain-fastnesses. To such men are due the discovery of new mining regions in localities where no inducement other than the yellow dust will draw the white man. They pave the way for oncoming civilization, and leave to others the fairest fruits of their toils and privations. As soon as their old camping grounds become comparatively settled and self-sustaining, these children of the frontier seek other ranges and wilder solitudes. Every fall and winter are marked by countless minor excitements and one or more gigautic stampedes, depopulating entire districts.
Up to the summer and fall of 1865 these migratory movements were in the main confined
to a comparatively circumscribed area, comprising what now constitutes the settled portion of the Territory,
The superficial placers having at this time begun to show symptoms of exhaustion, naturally gave rise to investigations of more distant localities. In Jannary, 1866, a rush took place to the mouth of Sun river towards a point some 60 miles from Fort Bonton. As a result no diggings of any value were discovered and a large number of the deluded enthusiasts were frozen to death. In July, of the same year, the placers of Little Blackfoot, Nevada gulch, and the llell Gate country, all on the western slopes, attracted considerable attention, and remain until the present time a region of undiminished interest. In the following month of August there spreng up an intense excitement caused by the report of fab. ulously rich placers in the neighborhood of Fort Lembi, in the Salmon river country of Idaho. In the same month a large number made their way to the Wind River mountains of Dakota, west and southwest of the extreme southern sources of the Yellowstone. Neither of these excitements appears to have justified expectation. That to Salmon river continued throngh the winters of 1866–67. Thousands were drawn thither, and others kept pouring in until the disappearance of the snow late in the spring so far exposed the ground as emphatically to disprove the illusion. Men remained for many months exposed to the cruel. ties of a very severe winter, built up a large town, held unprospected claims at enormous figures, and at length abandoned the country in disgust, condemning as fiercely as they had previously unreasonably lauded it. In October also of 1866, a stampede of some magniiude was directed to the Saskatchawan country, 650 miles north of Helena and in the British possessions. No diggings of importance rewarded the prospectors.
No permanent prosperity and no fixed centres of population are possible until such time as the superficial placers have ceased to yield a prolific booty of easy extraction. The long rows of deserted habitations, once teeming with the busy life of a flourishing mining town, bear melancholy testimony to the inefficiency of the placers alone to lay the foundations of permanent towns and cities. The real prosperity of a mining country may be dated from the time when the majority of the gulches, bars, &c., are worked out, since, at such timo, the people are compelled to turn their attention to the quartz veins, which alone promise permanency and a lasting source of revenue to well-directed enterprise. That many adventures terminate unfortunately; that vast sums are wasted through folly and ignorance, so culpable as almost to deserve to be branded as criminal, is not to be wondered at. The art of mining and the fundamental principles of metallurgy, as applied to the North American mineral regions, are of too recent formation to be, even in their general outlines, at all widely spread amongst the people. Hence, dazzled by a pursuit having as its immediate object the representatives of value in all civilized nations, viz., gold and silver, the majority of men lose sight of those primal economical considerations which no individual of practical business sense ever neglects or overlooks. They begin, not by counting the cost, but by rearing brilliant imaginary superstructures on a very meagre substratum of fact, and hence the mag. nificent proportions of the imposing edifice are in constant jeopardy from the faintest breathings of hard facts and common-sense reality.
Such opinions, the result of ignorance and malappreciation, must still continue until those men whose lives are devoted solely to the acquirement of a practical acquaintance with mining affairs shall have impressed upon the great body of the community the fundamental maxims necessary to successful mining. These may be summed up briefly as follows: First, a reasonably large estimate of cost; and, secondly, a just estimate of the average working yield by such process, either amalgamation or smelting, as may be determined upon by a reliable and competent authority. Undue hosto in erecting mills and machinery before a sufficient degree of development is apparent, has been, more than any other cause, the fruitful source of failure and disappointment. Companies organized with an insufficient working capital, and blunderingly conducted, find their resources failing them precisely at the moment when most needed, and many mining adventures thus prove failures even when the mine itself is of real value.
DISTRIBUTION OF THE VARIOUS METALS AND MINERALS.—There seems to be no marked segregation from one another of the gold, silver, copper, or coal bearing localities, other than that the last mentioned found mainly in the sedimentary formations of the east. Indeed, the phenomenon of double veins, so called, namely, those having pure smelting ores, as galenas, oxides and carbonates of lead on the one wall, and amalgamablo noble silver min. erals, as silver glance, stephanite, dark and light ruby silver, &c, &c., on the other, are of not uncommon occurrence. Gold is found over a wide extent of country, the main development of which, up to the present time, has been expended on placer deposits. Vein mining both for gold and silver is just beginning to come prominently into notice. Gold quartz of greater or less promise has been found in the immediate vicinity of all the localities once celebrated for their placers, viz: Dear Bannock, Virginia City, Helena City, Highland, &c., &c. Silver ores suitable for smelting are found in the Blue Wing and Argentă districts in the southwest, also in the vicinity of Jefferson City, in several of the districts near Helena, and in some of the mines of Flint creek and Mill creek. Silver ores suitable for amalgamation are found in Brown's gulch, in the neighborhood of Virginia City, and across the range in Deer Lodge county, on one of the branches of Flint creek, at Phillipsburg, &c., &c.
Copper ores, or such as carry a predominating percentage of this metal, are found among the eastern foot-hills, near the sources of the Muscleshell river, also in the valley of the Prickly Pear, and west of the range near Butte City. Traces of this metal are found in nearly all the mining districts, and a most curious formation of a true copper placer is observable near Beavertown, a short distance south of Jefferson City. The particles of pure copper, pointed, yet apparently uncrystallized, seem, in this instance, to be held together by a species of quartzy detritus.
We find, also, clays and sandstones superimposed and underlying the coal beds in thoso places where the local peculiarities of the surface have proved favorable to sedimentary and drift formations—that is, mainly, as before stated, in the east, but likewise among the foothills and, in one or two well-known instances, quite high up on the mountains of the west.
CENTRES OF POPULATION.--The chief centres of population in the Territory are three, viz: Bannock, Virginia and Helena cities. The motive of their foundation was the extent and profitableness of the placer deposits in their immediate vicinity. And since the limit of productiveness of the superficial placers may be determined to a degree of reasonable exactness, it is necessary to establish a claim to other local resources in order to maintain in the future the relative pre-eminence of the past.
First in the order of settlement. we find Bannock City, formerly called East Bannock, in contradistinction to another town of the same name lying to the southwest, and then likewise in the Territory of Idaho. The diggings were discovered in the summer of 1862 by one John White, from Colorado. The town is situated in a narrow gorge in the midst of a series of rolling bills. Through it there flows a considerable stream of water, called Willord's or Grasshopper creek, which is a tributary to one of the three chief affluents of the Jefferson river. Considerable mining was done the year of discovery. The majority of the claims paid well and uniformily without any surprisingly rich yields. The gold produced was of a very high rate of fineness, coining $19 30 per ounce. One particularly clean and choice lot, of upwards of $20,000, taken from a single claim, coined the very unusual sum of a few cents over $20 per ounce; that is very nearly as much as pure gold, which is valued at $20 67 per ounce. The placer deposits are still an object of pursuit, although the main reliance in the future must be the vein mines opposite to and below the town. The rocks of the vicinity are granite and metamorphic limestone, carrying the ore-bearing quartz lodes. We find some quartzite, and above the town clays and sandstones, with à considerable deposit of alluvium along the immediate borders of the creek.
The first territorial legislature assembled here, and among its other enactments promul. gated a series of laws determining the method of location, record, tenure, &c., of lode claims. These laws, although in the main modelled after the miner's customs of Idaho, which were in force up to and for some months subsequent to the date of segregation therefrom of Montana, were, nevertheless, altered in several minor and one or more fundamental points. The Idaho legislature did not attempt by statutory enactment to define the rights, privileges and penalties of the miners, but, according to the civil practice act, permitted to be brought in evidence " proof of the customs, usages or regulations established and in force in the mining districts, embracing such claims and such customs, usages or regulations, when not in conflict with the laws of the Territory, shall govern the decision of the action.” (Civil Practice Act, sec. 576.). As showing the animus of the framers, and the opinions in vogue in Montana at this period, it may not be inadmissible to insert these laws here.
We may premise by stating that these mid-continental Territories are stamped with the impress of Colorado. From geographical contiguity, and the fact that the bulk of the early immigration found its way hither from the east, it is only to be expected that the mining legislation should show unmistakable evidences of its origin, and hence be clearly distin. guishable from that of the west. A comparison of the two systems, in many respects fundamentally at variance, will be touched upon hereafter. AN ACT relating to the discovery of gold and silver quartz leads, lodes, or ledges, and of the manner of
theit location. (Approved December 26, 1864.) Be it enacted by the legislative assembly of the Territory of Montana, That any person who may hereafter discover any quartz lead, lode, or ledge, shall be entitled to one claim thereon by right of discovery, and one claim ench by pre-emption.
SEC. 2. That in order to entitle any person or persons to record in the county recorder's office of the proper county, any lead, lode, or ledge, either of gold or silver, or claim thereon, there shall first be discor. cred on said lead, lode, or ledge a vein or crevice of quartz or ore, with at least one well-defined wall.
Sec. 3. Claims on any lead, lode, or ledge, either of gold or silver, hereafter discovered, shall consist of not more than 200 feet along the lead, lode, or ledge, together with all dips, spurs, and angles emanating or diverging from said lead, lode, or ledge, as also 50 feet on each side of said lead, lode, or ledge, for working, purposes : Provided, That when two or more leads, lodes, or ledges shall be discovered within 100 feet of each other, either running parallel or crossing cach other, the ground between such leads, lodes, or ledges shall belong equally to the claimants of said leads, lodes, or ledges, without regard to priority of discovery or pre-emption.
Sec. 4. When any leads, lodes, or ledges shall cross each other, the quartz, ore, or mineral in the crevice or vein at the place of crossing shall belong to and be the property of the claimants upon the lead, lode, or ledge first discovered.
SEC. 5. That before any record shall be made, under the provisions of this get, there shall be placed at cach extremity of the discovered claim a good and
substantial stake, not less
than five inches in diameter, said stake to be firmly planted or sunken in the ground, extending two feet above the ground; tbat upon cach stake there shall be placed, in legible characters, the name of the lead, lode, or ledge, and that of the discoverer or discoverers, the date of discovery, and the name of each pre-emptor or claimant, and the direction or bearing, as near as may be, of his or her claim; said stake and the inscription theroon to
be replaced at least once in twelve months by the claimants on said loads, lodes, or ledges, if torn down or otherwise destroyed.
SEC. 6. Notice of the discovery or pre-emption upon any lead, lode, or ledge shall be filed for record in the county recorder's office, of the county in which the same may be situated, within fifteen days of the date of the discovery or pre-emption; and there shall at the same time be an oath taken before the recorder that the claimant or claimants are each and all of them bona fide residents of the Territory of Montana; and there shall be deposited in the recorder's office, either by the discoverer or some pre-emptor, a specimen of the quartz, ore, or mineral extracted or taken from said lead, lode, or ledge, which said specimen shall be properly labelled by the recorder and preserved in his office.
SEC. 7. That any person or persons who shall take up or destroy, or cause the same to be done, any of the said stakes, or who shall in anywise purposely deface or obliterato any part or portion of the writing or inscription placed thereon, shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor, and upon conviction thercof beforo any court of competent jarisdiction, shall be punished by a fine of not more than $1,000 or imprisonment in the county
jail not more than 90 days, or by both such fine and imprisoument. SEC. 8. That the amount of ground which may be taken up upon any lead, lode, or ledge, in addition to the discovery claim, shall be limited to 1,000 feet along said lead, lode, or ledge in each direction from the discovery claim thereon.
Sec. 9. All lead, lode, or ledge claims, taken up and recorded in pursuance with the provisions of this act, shall entitle the person recording to hold the same to the use of himself, his heirs and assigns; and con veyances of quartz claims shall hereafter require the same formalities and shall be subject to the same rules of construction as the transfer and conveyance of real estate.
Sec. 10. That if at any time previous to the passage of this act, claims have been taken up and recorded in the recorder's office of the proper county, upon any actual or proper lead, lodo, or ledge of quartz, ore, or mineral, the owners or proper claimants of said respective claim shall hoid tho samo to tho use of them. selves, their heirs and assigns.
SEC. 11. That the act relating to the discovery of gold and silver quartz lodes and the manner of their location, passed by the Idaho legislature and approved Febrnary 4, 1864, and all other acts, or parts of acts, inconsistent with this act, be, and the same are hereby, repealed. SEC. 12. This act shall take effect from and after this date.
Again, by an act approved January 17, 1865, it was enacted that quartz mining claims and water rights “sball become part and parcel of the county records, and shall be evidence in any court or courts of competeut jurisdiction;" thus placing the titles to quartz claims on the same footing and making their transfer subject to the same formalities as those to real property.
The next great discovery, viz., that of Alder creek, in the present county of Madison, was the motive to the foundation of Virginia City, and the minor towns of Summit, Highland, Nevada, Central, and Junction. This gulch was the richest and longest ever worked in Montana, and probably in the world, being nearly 20 miles in length, and uniformly productive throughout by far the greater portion. The creek flowing through it received its name from the thick growth of alders once lining its banks, of which at present no twig nor root remains. It takes its rise among the snows of the bald mountain south of the mining hamlet called Summit City, and discharges its waters into the Passamari, or Stinking Water river, one of the tributaries to the Jefferson.
The history of the discovery of the gulch was substantially as follows: In the spring of 1863 there started out from Bannock, on a prospecting tour northwards, a party composed of the following individuals: Wm. Fairweather, Thos. Cover, B. Hughes, H. Edgar, L. Simonds, G. Orr, Wm. Sweeney, and H. Rodgers. Having journeyed as far as the Deer Lodge valley they concluded to alter their course, and, leaving Orr behind, they made their way to the Yellowstone country. Here they fell into the hands of a large party of Crow Indians, who relieved them of pearly all their provisions, and at the same time exchanged horses with them. During the night all except Simonds managed to make good their escape ; they travelled as rapidly as possible, without halting to prospect, and, worn out with fatigue, camped on the east side of the stream since known as Alder creek.
Wm. Fairweather crossed over the stream, and on examining the locality observed a point where the bed rock lay exposed above the surface. He returned to the camping ground, and in the company of Edgar went to prospect the bar. The first panful of earth yielded $1 75, and after superficially testing other points, in all of which they obtained encouraging prospects, four of the party proceeded formally to stake their claims. Fairweather, Edgar, Cover, and Hughes marked out four claims on what was afterwards known as the Fairweather bar. They likewise secured for themselves four claims on Cover's bar. Rodgers and Sweeney staked off two claims, one on each bar named after themselves, and one on the Cover bar. Being without provisions the party hurried back to Bannock City, from whence returning in company of their friends, the gulch was staked off on the 6th and 7th of June, 1863.
Within the space of less than two years Alder gulch contained five thriving towns besides Virginia, an incorporated city containing nearly 10,000 inhabitants.
This Virginia City, Montana, must not be confounded with Virginia City, Nevada, distant some 800 miles on an air line to the southwest.
At the head of the gulch, far back upon the mountains and nine miles south of the city, the gold found in the washings was coarse, and many nuggets were picked up varying in value from $200 to $800. A short distance below the town of Summit the gold appeared in the form of flat rounded plates, known as scale gold, and the further one removed down stream the finer did the dust appear, until it consisted almost entirely of the finest particles, known as flour gold. During 1863, the year of discovery, but few of the richest claims were opened and explored. This was owing to the fact that the pay stratum lay deep, and hence arose the necessity for unity of action on the part of the owners of contiguous claims
in order to carry ont a systematic plan of bed-rock drainage. The following year, however, saw the full development of this most remarkable gulch.
No better exemplification of the spirit of the miners and their peculiar customs can be offered than a study of the district rules and regulations for the government of placer claims. As proving a good example of their kind, and containing a reasonably clear and concise statement of the wishes and rights of the miners as expressed by themselves, we have the following regulations of Alder gulch. These laws were drafted by a select committee chosen at a meeting of the miners en masse; the motive to which is contained in the following preamble :
Whereas the laws now in force in Fairweather district, Madison county, Montana Territory, have proved insufficient to protect the rights of the miners of said district :
And whereas the rights and interests of the miners of the district are of such a nature as not to admit of a resort to the tedious remcily of the ordinary process of law for every violation of those rights :
Now, therefore, we, the miners of said district, in public meeting assembled, in pursuance of legal notice, for the purpose of defending our rights and duties, and the protection of our several interests, do hereby resolve and declare that the rules and provisions following shall be the law of Fairweather district from the date of enactment, viz: September 16, 1864.
ARTICLE A. SECTION 1. Hereafter the officers of the district shall consist of a president and secretary, who shall hold their offices for the term of six months, and until their successors aro duly elected and enter upon the discharge of the duties of their office.
Sec. 2. It shall be the duty of the president to call a meeting of the miners of the district at any time on the written application of five claimholders of the district, of wbich he shall give three days' notice prerious to the day of meeting, by three written or printed advertisements put at three of the most public places in the district, and he shall preside at each meeting.
Sec. 3. It shall be the duty of the sceretary to attend all meetings called by the president, and keep a tree record of the proceedings thereof, and file the same with the county recorder; and he shall preside at 3 meetings when the president is absent.
Sec. 4. After suit commenced in any case wherein the title to a claim is called in question, neither parts shall be held liable to represent said claim during the pendency of litigation, but the same shall be deemed to be represented in favor of the real owner by operation of law.
SEC. 5. Every person shall be entitled to hold, by pro-emption, one creek, bar, or hill claim, and as many of either kind by purchase as he shall represent, according to the laws of the district.
SEC. 6. Any co-partnership or company of persons shall be entitled to hold the same number of claims br pre-emption and purchase as the number of persons comprising such co-partnership or company would be entitled to hold in their individual capacity.
Sec. 7. The lessee of a claim (if he shall have agreed to completely work out the same, and his lease be recorded) shall be entitled to hold one claim by pre-emption, and his work done on the leased claim repte empted by him.
SEC. 8. No person who, having pre-empted a claim by recording thereon, has forfeited the same, or wto has failed to receive a good title thereto, or who shall in good faith sell and convey the same, shall be thereby debarred from holding another claim by pre-emption.
SEC. 9. Every claim shall be considered as pre-empted upon which the pre-emptor or purchaser shall, by himself, his agent, or hired hands, perform three full days'
work in each treek, and such representative of each and every claim that such pre-emptor or purchaser holds in the district, provided that each and all of said claims have been duly recorded ; and if any person shall represent a claim by working thereon withoc having his bill of sale or other converance thereof duly recorded, then and in that case he shall not be entitled to hold any other claim in the district, either by pre-emption or purchase, but shall be confined and limited to the claim upon which he has so worked until it is recorded.
Sec. 10. Co-partners in any conpany or companies, working one claim in the district, shall be considered as representing thereby all the claims held by them in the district.
Sec. 11. Any claim to which a drain ditch is commenced or beginning, if the holder of the same shal compose one of the ditch company, or shall put and continue hands at work in the same, shall be considered as duly represented until the drain ditch is completed to such claim. Sec. 12. The
absence of any person from the district shall not impair or invalidate his rights therein, pro vided bis interests are represented by his partners or agents, or men in his employ.
SEC. 13. The rights of a sick member shall be respected during his illness, and the certificate of a phye cian shall be sufficient evidence of such illness.
Sec. 14. Any miner who shall bave expended $600 on his claim, or who, for want of money for opening the same, is unable to represent according to law, shall have the privilege of working on any other claim in the district in order to raise money to enable him fully to open his own claim, proridel he shall put op notices on his own claim, stating where he is at work, and his rights shall be respected during the time be is so at work for others.
SEC. 15. It shall and may be lawful for any person or company to dig a drain ditch through the claim & claims of any person or company, for the purpose of drainage, and any person or company making sucà ditch shall have a lien upon any and all such claims thoroughly drained thereby for a just and equal proper tion of the cost thereof." But no lien shall be enforced until the holder of the claim affected thereby shall avail himself of the benefit of the ditch.
Sec. 16. The water in any creek or gulch shall belong exclusively to the miners of the creek or gulch. Sec. 17. Each gulch claim shall be entitled to ono sluice-head of water of not less than twenty isches-to bo measured subject to a pressure of six inches, and such additional quantity as may be necessary for mining purposes, if such additional quantity be pot used to the injury of the rights of others.
SEC. 18. The interest of tho holder or holders of any creek or gulch claim is hereby declared to be a chattel interest, consisting of the right to the possession of the land and the water thereupon inseparable and indi. risible, except by the consent of the party or parties in interest, made in due form of law, and then only to such an extent as shall not impair or infringe the rights of others.
Sec. 19. No person or persons in company shall have the right, by pre-emption or otherwise, to claim and hold an exclusive right or privilege in or to any portion of the water in any creek or gulch in the district
. except as herein provided; and any ditch, pipe, channel, flume, or other means of conveyance heretofore made, or which may hereafter be made, by which the water in any creek or gulch in the district shall be directed from its original channel and carried beyond any creek or gulch claim, without learing in the creek or gulch the quantity of water belonging to ench claim,
is hereby declared to be a public unisance,
and may be abated immediately, in such way and manner as shall be in accordanco with the laws of this Territory and the common law of the land.