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Quiz about Theres Gold Up North eh
Quiz about Theres Gold Up North eh

There's Gold Up North, eh? Trivia Quiz


This quiz will excavate some of the history of the Klondike Gold Rush in the Yukon, Canada. It has been written by the gold crew members of Phoenix Rising as part of our World Tour 2022. Hopefully you will gain some insight into how difficult life was...

A multiple-choice quiz by Team Phoenix Rising. Estimated time: 4 mins.
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Author
MikeMaster99
Time
4 mins
Type
Multiple Choice
Quiz #
408,880
Updated
Apr 16 22
# Qns
10
Difficulty
Average
Avg Score
6 / 10
Plays
173
Awards
Top 35% Quiz
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Question 1 of 10
1. In which decade did the Klondike Gold Rush happen? Hint


Question 2 of 10
2. Who was the first person to stake a claim at the site of the Klondike Gold Rush? Hint


Question 3 of 10
3. The White Pass Trail was one common route to get to the Yukon goldfields. Where did this trail start? Hint


Question 4 of 10
4. Which 53-kilometer (33 mile) trail was used as the shortest and most popular access route from the Pacific coast to the Yukon goldfields during the Klondike Gold Rush? Hint


Question 5 of 10
5. The Klondike Gold Rush saw a flood of about 100,000 prospectors heading for the Yukon. To prevent starvation, Canadian authorities required prospectors to have a year's supply of food. Along with camping gear and mining tools, about what weight of equipment had to be transported by each Klondiker? Hint


Question 6 of 10
6. Dawson City was a settlement created to cater for the thousands of gold prospectors. After whom was the township named? Hint


Question 7 of 10
7. "Soapy Smith" was an American confidence trickster and gangster who ran criminal empires in both Colorado and Alaska. During the Klondike Gold Rush, he operated in the townships of Dyea and Skagway. How did he gain his "Soapy" sobriquet? Hint


Question 8 of 10
8. The name "Klondike" for the river and its surrounding region is of German origin.


Question 9 of 10
9. Which more modern mining technique was used extensively in the Klondike gold fields from the 1910s onwards and saw the decline of many remaining solo operations? Hint


Question 10 of 10
10. Which Canadian author wrote an extremely popular historical account of the Klondike Gold Rush? It was written in 1958 and updated in 1972. Hint



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Quiz Answer Key and Fun Facts
1. In which decade did the Klondike Gold Rush happen?

Answer: 1890s

The Klondike Gold Rush began on 16 August 1896, when a group of local prospectors discovered gold on Rabbit Creek, one of the tributaries of the Klondike River. After that became known as Bonanza Creek. News of the discovery, however, did not spread out of the region until June of the following year, leading to a veritable stampede in which over 100,000 people tried to reach Klondike - only less than half of them succeeding. The Klondike Gold Rush reached its zenith between the summer of 1897 and the summer of 1898, then gradually petered out - effectively ending in the winter of 1898-1899, when large amounts of gold were found at Nome, Alaska. Gold rushes occurred in all the decades listed as wrong answers, both in North America and in other parts of the world, such as Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa.

This valuable question was dug out of the ground by LadyNym.
2. Who was the first person to stake a claim at the site of the Klondike Gold Rush?

Answer: George Carmack

In August of 1896, after talking to the Canadian prospector Robert Henderson, George Carmack started looking for gold at Rabbit Creek, soon to be renamed Bonanza Creek. George then staked out four claims, along with his wife Kate, Skookum Jim Keish (her brother) and Dawson Charlie (their nephew). He registered the claims with the police post at the Fortymile River mouth. News spread quickly through the other mining camps in the Yukon River Valley. By the end of August, all of the land around Bonanza Creek has been claimed.

This question was claimed by JAM6430 of Phoenix Rising.
3. The White Pass Trail was one common route to get to the Yukon goldfields. Where did this trail start?

Answer: Skagway, south-eastern Alaska

Skagway and Dyea were the two closest saltwater ports to the Yukon goldfields. From Skagway stampeders, as they became known, had to cross the mountainous White Pass to reach Bennett Lake where they waited out the winter and made boats or rafts for the 500 mile journey down the Yukon River to reach the goldfields. The White Pass was truly awful. The path was narrow, very steep and overcrowded, made worse by the amount of gear and rations each man had to carry. A man with a sled could reach Bennett Lake in 90 days if he was lucky. Horses were treated badly; they starved, fell over cliffs or were hurt by the rough ground. Author Jack London who witnessed the trail termed the pass "Dead Horse Trail".

Question written by Phoenix Rising team member 1nn1 who is still shaking his head at the lengths people would go to find gold.
4. Which 53-kilometer (33 mile) trail was used as the shortest and most popular access route from the Pacific coast to the Yukon goldfields during the Klondike Gold Rush?

Answer: Chilkoot Trail

Providing the most direct and inexpensive route to the interior of Canada's Yukon Territory, the Chilkoot Trail was a popular transportation route that prospectors took advantage of during the Klondike Gold Rush in the late 1890s. The Chilkoot Trail has its origins in Dyea, Alaska, and winds through coastal rainforest following the Taiya River until reaching its terminus at Bennett Lake, British Columbia. The Chilkoot Trail, as popular and convenient a gold rush thoroughfare as it was, included enough challenging terrain and wintry weather that the North-West Mounted Police, later the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, required specific supplies and gear that prospectors needed to take with them to embark upon their journeys.

Faced with the prospect of choosing between the Chilkoot Trail and the longer White Pass Trail (72 km, 45 miles), once underway many miners quickly came to the opinion that they should have taken 'the other one'.

Although the Chilkoot Trail was mostly deserted after the Klondike Gold Rush, the site's US portion was declared 'Klondike Gold Rush National Park' in 1976, and the Canadian parts of the Chilkoot Trail were declared the 'Chilkoot Trail National Historic Site' in 1987. In combination they form the 'Klondike Gold Rush International Historical Park'.

This question was trekked in by Phoenix Rising gold team member Rizeeve.
5. The Klondike Gold Rush saw a flood of about 100,000 prospectors heading for the Yukon. To prevent starvation, Canadian authorities required prospectors to have a year's supply of food. Along with camping gear and mining tools, about what weight of equipment had to be transported by each Klondiker?

Answer: 1 ton (1016 kg)

The remoteness of the area and arduous winter conditions made reaching the Klondike a life-and-death experience for many. Dogs, horses, mules and oxen were used to move supplies, while some miners carried theirs, used sleds or hired others. Many had to move their loads in stages. Typically, each Klondiker transported around a ton of food and equipment. Because of this, it took a long time to reach the goldfields, with some either giving up or arriving to find opportunities limited.

A suggested equipment list included food staples (bacon, flour, beans, tea/coffee, sugar, potatoes and salt), cooking gear, tent, bedding and clothing. Then there were the mining tools: picks, axes, nails and various assorted devices for establishing and maintaining sites to extract the precious metal. Demand greatly exceeded supply, with prices for essentials climbing to astronomical levels. Poor hygiene and a lack of fresh food led to diseases including scurvy ("Canadian black leg"), dysentery and typhoid. Canadian "rules" were enforced by the North-West Mounted Police, and these also included customs duties which could cost an additional 25% of the value of the goods transported. Seeking one's fortune on the Klondike was indeed a true test of stamina and perseverance.

This question was carried into the quiz by psnz of Phoenix Rising's Gold Crew as they competed in their team Global Tour 2022.
6. Dawson City was a settlement created to cater for the thousands of gold prospectors. After whom was the township named?

Answer: George Mercer Dawson, Canadian surveyor and director of Canada's Geographical Survey

Prospector Joe Ladue and shopkeeper Arthur Harper created Dawson City in the early days of the gold rush by buying 178 acres on the mudflats at the confluence of the Klondike and Yukon Rivers. By the winter of 19-896 the population had frown to 500 people with a block of land selling for $500. Less than 18 months later there were 30 000 people in a town with no running water or sewerage. The river was polluted and the threat of typhoid and diphtheria was constant.

The supply of food for so many people was a critical issue especially when the river iced over in winter. Scurvy and malaria were prevalent. Fire was also a constant threat as houses were made of wood, heated by stoves and candles and oil lamps were used for lighting. There were three fires in three years with the worst in 1899 destroying 117 buildings. The town diminished rapidly in size as gold production fell heavily 1903-1907. The town had a 2016 census population of 1375.

Question written by Phoenix Rising team member 1nn1 who thinks he has found a Canadian town that matches the remoteness of some Australian Outback townships.
7. "Soapy Smith" was an American confidence trickster and gangster who ran criminal empires in both Colorado and Alaska. During the Klondike Gold Rush, he operated in the townships of Dyea and Skagway. How did he gain his "Soapy" sobriquet?

Answer: Running a prize soap racket

Prospectors and miners had to contend with all manner of difficulties reaching the Klondike, surviving in a harsh environment and finding and extracting gold. They then had to avoid the human parasites keen to separate them from their hard-earned treasure. Jefferson Randolph "Soapy" Smith II (1860-1898) organised criminal operations designed to relieve miners of their money. Three-card monte and pea-and-shell games were just the tip of the iceberg. With local lawmen in his pocket, he opened and ran a fake telegraph office, charging fees for sending messages before telegraph lines reached the town of Skagway. Able to identify suitable victims, poker games were one way to rid people of their cash and gold. Smith's associates even posed as newspaper reporters and clergymen in their efforts to devise other methods for defrauding the unwary.

Soapy Smith was able to finance his criminal endeavours with earnings from his earlier "prize soap racket". To encourage sales of bars of soap, money was randomly hidden in the packaging, but sleight of hand ensured that only his confederates were ever winners. "Captain" Smith even formed his own "Skagway Military Company" during the Spanish-American War (1898), for which he gained official approval, and which helped secure his position in local society. On 7 July 1898, Klondike miner John Douglas Stewart was relieved of his sack of gold in a game of three-card monte with three of Smith's associates. An argument the next day led to the "Shootout at the Juneau Wharf" in Skagway. Soapy Smith and a guard were both fatally wounded. The "Soapy Smith Wake" festival is still held annually on July 8 in Skagway.

Phoenix Rising's Gold Crew member psnz slipped this question into the quiz as part of the team Global Tour 2022.
8. The name "Klondike" for the river and its surrounding region is of German origin.

Answer: False

"Klondike" comes from the word "T'rondk", meaning "river of hammerstones" in Hn, a Northern Athabaskan language spoken by the First Nations people also known as Hn Hwch'in. Hammerstones were used to drive stakes into the riverbed to support fish traps. As the original word was difficult to pronounce for the gold seekers that flocked to the region in the late 19th century, they adopted the pronunciation "Klondike" as the closest approximation.

This question was hammered down by LadyNym, Phoenix Rising's resident etymology buff.
9. Which more modern mining technique was used extensively in the Klondike gold fields from the 1910s onwards and saw the decline of many remaining solo operations?

Answer: Dredging

For the single miner, life was challenging. Of the 30-40,000 people who managed to reach Dawson City, about half were prospectors. Of these, very, very few became rich (and many of the rich then lost their money again soon afterwards). By the time the majority of prospectors arrived, all of the good claims had been taken and the 'easy' gold already extracted. There was still gold present but it was much harder to obtain. Permafrost not far below the ground surface meant that fires had to be lit (and kept going) to melt the ground to allow working it for gold. Some gold seams ran many meters below the surface. Many disillusioned miners then headed off for Nome, Alaska when gold was discovered there in 1899.

In 1910, mechanical dredging of the stream beds and surrounding land was introduced. A large dredge could be operated by as few as 10 men and would turn over the same amount of ground as over 2000 single miners. The dredge typically consisted of large metal 'buckets' on an extended arm from a central control 'hut'. These buckets would rotate along the arm and chew through the ground, moving through as much as 14,000 cubic meters (18,000 cubic yards) of earth per day. Several dredges usually operated simultaneously during the non-winter months.

This question was excavated by Phoenix Rising member, MikeMaster99, who enjoyed seeing some historical dredges still in place in Dawson City and reflecting on how challenging life as a miner must have been.
10. Which Canadian author wrote an extremely popular historical account of the Klondike Gold Rush? It was written in 1958 and updated in 1972.

Answer: Pierre Berton

Due to his father's involvement in the Klondike Gold Rush, Pierre Francis de Marigny Berton was born in the Yukon (Whitehorse) in 1920. He worked in mining camps while undertaking a history degree at the University of British Columbia. He served in the army during World War II and then became a war correspondent during the Korean War. He moved into journalism and editing. His ongoing interest in Canadian history resulted in a series of articles and then books including the highly regarded history of the Canadian Pacific railway and of the Klondike Gold Rush.

His ability to make history entertaining and informative won him many admirers and led to media appearances, his own TV interview show (1962-1973) and emergence as a popular public intellectual. He was not afraid of controversy as exemplified by taking on the Anglican Church in "The Comfortable Pew" (1965). He died in 2004. He received many honors during his lifetime and since 1994, the Canadian National Historical Society annually gives the Pierre Berton Award for excellence in history presentation. Berton was the first winner.

This question and the inspiration for this quiz, originated with PR member MikeMaster99 reading Berton's fantastic book on the Klondike gold rush while living in Canada.
Source: Author MikeMaster99

This quiz was reviewed by FunTrivia editor gtho4 before going online.
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