Golden Cariboo Treasure Found.
While BC Ghost Towns was out on the road exploring the history of British Columbia we have the opportunity to meet many wonderful and interesting people. When my wife and I were camped at Barkerville's Lowhee Campground, we met two lovely people with a passion for BC's Gold rush History that rivalled our own!

Lana & Gary shared an amazing story of Treasure on so many levels...
Thank you, Connie & John for inviting me to share our Story on your website. You are doing a wonderful job in keeping British Columbia history alive for generations to come!
I'll start with who I am.
My name is Lana Fox, my husband is Gary. We have two sons, Mike and Brian whom we used to bring with us on our outdoor ventures discovering Cariboo history. Besides the love of history, I do genealogy, researching our family tree. Guess you could say they are similar in ways, history is the past.
I can't recall what really sparked our interest in "old things". When did it happen? Possibly when, Gary brought home an old Eaton's catalogue from the early 40's. I remember the day he walked in the door and handed it to me, but I thought at the time "what do we want this for", so guess what, I threw it out! I still regret it to this day.
I think probably after our first visit to Barkerville with the kids, it left us with a lasting impression to want to come back and we did for many years and still to this day. Now the granddaughters are coming! There's something about the "Cariboo" that draws you to it. It's full of history not just because of the gold rush, but which became an important link in opening up this part of the province by the development of new trails, roads and towns; besides sending all that gold down south.
Spending many weekends hiking in the mountains looking for the old town sites and cabins, (Gary's favorite part), we dug for bottles, found some; usually someone else had been there before us in earlier years but we kept at it and most often found something.
I am very involved with the Friends of Barkerville which is to help preserve, protect and promote Barkerville. During the early 1990's Gary and I spent a good 6 years re-discovering the old original 1861 pack trail (which still exists) as one of the Friends trail projects. This trail was used by the first gold seekers to Antler Creek then on to Barkerville. We spent every possible weekend we could locating, marking and clearing. We were addicted! It was quite a feeling to walk in the same footsteps as the old timers did.
Our favorite find of an artifact was when we went exploring up Antler Creek near "Discovery Rock", where they first found gold in the area; was that of an early double barrel cap and ball pistol. Actually the kids found it with the metal detector. It had no handle left, it rotted away long ago but the rest of it was awesome! Inspecting it close up, it was at one time very fancy and has a Belgium proof mark.
I wrote to a gun collector, sent him a picture and he stated that it was from around 1844. The site that the gun was located from was hardly any bigger than 10x10', pretty cramped quarters and not much of a cabin site but maybe more of a canvas roofed shelter at the time, something to try to stay warm and dry in.
We also found fragments of glass from bottles. Being that we were in the area where gold was first found on Antler, we like to think it could be where the first gold seekers stayed and the gun may have belonged to one of them.
Photo From the Lana Fox Collection.
Photo From the Lana Fox Collection.
Another lucky find was when we stopped to rest at the top of a hill on Stevens Gulch, beside the old road. Mike our son looked down at the ground and said, "there's a dime". No big deal until we picked it up and "wow", it was an 1858 American dime!
I haven't figured out what country the coin on the left came from which is about the size of a quarter. Men came from all over the world. Maybe some of your readers know. We found it near the old site of Van Winkle.
Photo From the Lana Fox Collection.
A few other interesting finds
When we think back of all the camp outs, nasty weather at times, lots of bugs, it was all worth it. We have many collectable items from the past that we can share and talk about along with stories to tell.
Photo From the Lana Fox Collection.
Thanks Lana & Gary for sharing not only your Treasure story but for your participation over many years finding and maintaining the original 1861 pack trail into the Cariboo Gold Rush Country.

For more Information on the Friends of Barkerville and their current activities, just click the Button Below...
Lowhee Campground Barkerville BC.
Click Here!

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