George Carmack

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George Washington Carmack, about 1900

George Washington Carmack (born September 24, 1860 in Contra Costa County , California , † June 5, 1922 in Vancouver , Canada ) was an American gold prospector . For a long time he was credited with the gold discovery at Bonanza Creek , which triggered the Klondike gold rush . According to recent findings, however, this was Carmack's brother-in-law Skookum Jim .

The Discovery Claim at Bonanza Creek

Carmack came to the Yukon River from San Francisco in 1887 via Dyea and the Chilkoot Pass . He took an Indian woman from the Tagish tribe as his wife who died of flu a short time later . Carmack then married Shaaw Tlaa, a sister of his first wife, whom he called "Kate". The two had a daughter, Graphie Grace. The family made a living from trading, fishing and hunting in the Yukon Territory . Carmack discovered a coal mine near what is now the city of Carmacks named after him .

In August 1896, he and his wife were fishing at the mouth of the Klondike River when the prospector Robert Henderson advised them to look for gold at Rabbit Creek (now Bonanza Creek). Together with the Indians Skookum Jim and Dawson Charlie, they struck gold on August 16, 1896 at the now famous "Discovery Claim". In the spring of 1898, when the first prospectors attracted by the find arrived at the Yukon, Carmack resided in the thriving city of Dawson and, financed by his new wealth, let others work for him.

In 1899, Carmack traveled south with his family. Kate was arrested in Seattle for drunkenness, after which Carmack sent his wife and daughter to his sister Rose in California and returned to Dawson alone. The following winter he became engaged to the American Marguerite Laimée. When Kate found out about this, she severed the relationship with Carmack, which had never been made official, and returned to her homeland. Carmack went back to California, married Laimée in October 1900, and brought his daughter to join him a year later.

On September 11, 1896, Andreas Huonker staked his first claim on the Klondike River, a tributary of the Yukon River, as the second person after George Carmack.


  • James Albert Johnson: George Carmack: The Man of Mystery Who Set Off the Klondike Gold Rush . Epicenter Press, 2003, ISBN 0-9708493-2-X .

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Website of the city of Rosenfeld (without author). (No longer available online.) Archived from the original on October 29, 2013 ; Retrieved October 25, 2013 . Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /