peaked during the mid 1860's and boasted a population of between 5000-10,000 people.
|Lets join Mark Twain as he
describes from his book "Roughing It" a miner's life in Aurora during the mid
"We took up various claims, and commenced shafts and tunnels on them, but never finished any of them. We had to do a certain amount of work on each to "hold" it, else other parties could seize our property after the expiration of ten days. We were always hunting up new claims and doing a little work on them and then waiting for a buyer--who never came. We never found any ore
that would yield more than fifty dollars a ton; and as the mills charged fifty dollars a ton for working ore and extracting the silver, our pocket-money melted steadily away and none returned to take its place. We lived in a little cabin and cooked for ourselves; and altogether it was a hard life, though a hopeful one--for we never ceased to expect fortune and a customer to burst upon us some day.
At last, when flour reached a dollar a pound, and money could not be borrowed on the best security at less than eight per cent a month (I being without the security, too), I abandoned mining and went to milling. That is to say, I went to work as a common laborer in a quartz mill, at ten dollars a week and board.
I will remark, in passing, that I only remained in the milling business one week. I told my employer I could not stay longer without an advance in my wages; that I liked quartz milling, indeed was infatuated with it; that I had never before grown so tenderly attached to an occupation in so short a
time; that nothing, it seemed to me, gave such scope to intellectual activity as feeding a battery and screening tailings, and nothing so stimulated the moral attributes as retorting bullion and washing
blankets--still, I felt constrained to ask an increase of salary.
He said he was paying me ten dollars a week, and thought it a good round sum. How much did I want? I said about four hundred thousand dollars a month, and board, was about all I could reasonably ask, considering the hard times. I was ordered off the premises! And yet, when I look back to those days and call to mind the exceeding hardness of the labor I performed in that mill, I only regret that I did not ask him seven hundred thousand."
It was during his stay at Aurora that Samuel Clemens started writing articles for the Territorial Enterprise Newspaper, he was offered a job with the newspaper at $25.00 a week and left Aurora pennyless walking all the way from Aurora to Virginia City.
Let's explore Aurora
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