Transcribed from "History of North Washington, an illustrated history
of Stevens, Ferry, Okanogan and Chelan counties", published by Western
Historical Publishing Co., 1904.
DANIEL G. CHILSON.
Surely the reliable prospector is a man deserving credit from every American
citizen, since the vast quantities of wealth of this country have been
brought to life through his efforts. Following this unique and strong
character always goes the mining engineer and expert, whose forces assist
to bring into circulation these vast amounts discovered by the prospector.
The mining expert is also a great benefactor. When we find both these
qualities combined in one man, who is promoted by an energy that never
tires and directed by keen wisdom and consummate skill which leads to success
after success, we certainly have men deserving of especial mention in the
history of the country. Such a one is the subject of this article.
Mr. Chilson is not a school made man, although he is a student. He
is a thorough worker and understands the science of geology, metallurgy,
mineralogy, chemistry, assaying and so forth, as far as they are real and
not theoretical. He is decidedly a practical man in all these lines,
and in financial lines as well. The magnificent success that he has
achieved, stamps him a man of great caliber and broad views.
Daniel G. Chilson was born in Burleson county,
Texas, October 9, 1849, the son of Judge S. L. and Sophie M. (Jenkins)
Chilson. The father was a native of Indiana, married in Missouri
and moved to Texas where he operated the Chilson hotel in Caldwell.
The family later moved to Bandera county, where the father was elected
county judge. He served the confederate cause through the Civil War,
after which he came to California and where he has remained since.
Our subject was liberally educated and early developed a propensity for
independent, personal investigation, the prosecution of which has given
him his success in life largely. In 1868 he was favored with a companionship
with Colonel K. S. Woolsey, in extended hunting tours through Arizona,
and during this time he became an expert shot. In 1871 he was in
California and roved about over the state. In 1873 he went to Arizona
and discovered some lead mines at Castle Dame. He was soon shipping
ore to San Francisco and continued the same until he came out a few hundred
dollars in debt. Being a man of energy he was not daunted and this
failure simply whetted his appetite for further mining ventures.
Gaining the assistance of James M. Narney, a wealthy wholesale merchant
at Yuma, young Chilson was soon in the field again and discovered the Silver
Nuggett, from which he cleaned up eighty-two thousand dollars in a very
short time. Major W. W. Leland, of New York, was the man that introduced
him to the New York capitalists with whom he was enabled to stock the mine,
in which deal he made two hundred thousand dollars more. His next
discovery was the Mineral Creek mines, where he located a mill at the expense
of ninety thousand dollars and lost the whole thing, through hostile Indians.
Other reverses in mining speculations took all of what he had left, except
a twenty-five thousand dollar farm in Los Angeles county. Following
this Mr. Chilson was in various deals, both gaining and losing money, always
clinging to the mining ventures. It may be said of him that what
he made in mining he would always use to further develop some property.
In 1876 he commenced assaying and in every department in the science he
made thorough investigations, until he is now a most skillful expert.
In 1876 Mr. Chilson took charge of the Young America mine, near Bossburg,
and one year later located in Loomis. Since coming here he has put
through several good deals, besides attending to a general assaying business.
Mr. Chilson is entire owner of the Paymaster group of mines, located about
fifteen miles west of Loomis, on Toat Coulee creek, and indications show
that there is a fortune waiting for him in this property. In 1888 he located
his present farm, which joins the town of Loomis, and is a very valuable
property. He has a good residence, commodious office and laboratory
near by, a thousand bearing trees and raises cattle.
On January 13, 1891, Mr. Chilson married Miss
Jennie, daughter of Joseph and Sarah J. (Wilkes) Hall, mentioned elsewhere
in this volume. To them one child, Daniel G., Jr., has been born.
Mrs. Chilson is a well educated lady and has become thoroughly interested
in mining assays, as is her husband, and has rendered Mr. Chilson most
valuable assistance. Too much credit can scarcely be given to this
remarkable lady for the self denial and excellent spirit manifested in
her husband's business, which at times is exceedingly trying and arduous,
and especially so in the hours when the clouds hang low. Mr. and
Mrs. Chilson have hosts of friends and are well respected in the community.